Allow me the indulgence of an analogy.
Let’s say you have a second car that you only use for pleasure drives. After work, you haul that bad boy out of the garage and just drive around town to see the sights. In fact, when you bought the car, you even told the dealer this — the car’s intended purpose was for occasional driving in the evening and on the weekends.
“This car is ideal for that,” he said. (Of course he would. He’d say that about anything.)
This car is trouble from the start, though. Some nights, it won’t start. Other times, it will only chug down the street. Most nights though, it runs just fine and is a pleasure to scoot around in, but it’s annoying nonetheless that you can’t drive your own damn car whenever you want.
So you call the dealer to complain. He sends a crew to look at your car. They scratch their heads. They fiddle with a few things under the hood. They pronounce it improved and thank you for your patience.
Few nights later and, again, the car is out of commission. You call. He sends. They scratch and fiddle. You’re thanked for your continuing patience.
Again, no improvement. FCS, you just want to go for a drive in the evenings — is it too much to ask? You paid the money, you’ve maintained the vehicle on your end, you’ve been patient.
This time, the crew decides that your car isn’t performing because there’s a problem with one of the parts. You’ve worn it out already, too many miles on it or some such, so they’ll have to swap in a replacement some day. (Some day??)
You know how hard it is to get replacement parts from Germany! Sheesh! Sir, your patience is appreciated! There’s no call to get snippy.
A month goes by — you make occasional inquiries about that part and don’t they have FedEx in Germany? Sometimes the dealer returns your calls, sometimes not. You assume your continuing patience is appreciated.
Another month passes and finally the dealer calls! He found a replacement part with a lot of miles on it, but a replacement just the same! Aren’t you excited that he was so diligent?
(I’m going to guess that you wouldn’t be excited.) Why the hell can’t you get a brand new part?
He explains that they gave this issue a lot of thought and consideration to all the factors involved in replacing so many of these parts (so many? wtf), and they determined that this batch of used parts will suffice and be the least disruptive to all the car owners involved. Again, that patience sure is appreciated.
You’re no idiot. You know that soon this replacement part is going to wear out just like the other and you’ll have the same damn problems then as you did before.
The time for patience is over, isn’t it? Truth be told, patience had hit the highway a few months ago and was long gone. This cheap-ass trick of swapping in worn parts instead of brand new ones isn’t going over well, is it?
My point is this: you would not accept this kind of treatment with your car, or your cell phone service, or your cable service. If every time you went to a particular movie theater the soundtrack was mismatched, that would be entirely unacceptable, wouldn’t it?
(Setting aside the larger issue that we regularly accept sub-par performance and delivery in our computer products with no hope of refund or restitution), we are whiners if we expect our chosen MMOG to be available when we want to play and with a minimum of lag so we can enjoy them?
That’s not whining. That’s holding the gaming company’s feet to the fire and explaining the facts of life. We did our part: we paid our money, we bought internet access, many of us upgraded our computers to accommodate the system reqs, we allowed time to work out the kinks. Now it’s “put up or pay up” time.
Why others think they deserve any less is truly a mystery to me.