The possibility of asynchronous social features for Wasteland 2 resulted in a small torrent of panic and criticism in the midst of an otherwise positive phenomenon. Brian Fargo, CEO of inXile, addressed the issue of incorporating the feature and crowd-sourced games after the fact in his blog.
“Creating fan funded projects with input and transparency is certainly a new experience for me, and I would not have it any other way,” wrote Fargo. “I think it is important to note that we still want to be creative and throw ideas out for debate, which is why I couch most of my details with caveats. What I have discovered is that there are some four-letter words with extra letters like ‘Social’ which get very emotional responses. Social means casual to some people and Wasteland 2 is NOT a casual game. I will certainly be careful in my word selection as I want new ideas to be discussed without being railroaded for bad word choice. Also please keep in mind that we don’t start full production until the funding hits in about a month. Until then, the forums are helping us hone in on the most important tenets.”
“And to repeat… this is an old-school RPG and nothing is going to make us deviate from that experience but there could be some options to consider that make it more fun,” he continued. “In fact, the reason we are not doing multi-player is because it would have affected the narrative. Keep in mind that this game is pre funded, so I don’t have to use clever buzzwords to get attention or convince people to buy it. My thoughts on additions are pure in the sense of whether it would make it more fun to play. Period.”
“I clearly made a mistake in throwing out an idea before I communicated a cohesive vision document on the overall game. At two million in funding we will be doing the top things everyone wants anyway: a larger world and more content, more character dialog, more graphics across the board, and more audio. I should not have thrown out any fringe ideas this early on . . . but live and learn,” Fargo noted, “The mod-kit is a whole other beast which I have let people know we are considering, but it would not make launch as I want to keep our development focus on the content we plan to ship.”
“I do like sharing my experience with my friends when I play a game—be it conversation or leaderboards. I would be curious to see my friend’s stats when playing: how many kills he had, ammo used, his level and other various non-spoiling information. However, I think the best way to handle new concept is to put them out on the forum for people to discuss. We will also try to communicate the work required for any potential new ideas so people understand impact. We want to spend our energy on the parts that people will enjoy the most no matter what. My statement is still true that I would rather make a smaller group ecstatic than worry about a bigger audience. All of you backers are the core group I care about the most, and I will continue to post and read from the forums to sync us up,” he concluded.