I have been playing your ‘First Life’ game for some years now and I wish to register dissatisfaction with some of the so-called features.
1) Lack of manual/in-game help/tool tips.
I realise that you boast an ‘extensive training mission’. What you fail to mention is that this will take approximately 1/3 of the promised 75 year content. Additionally there is little guidance even during this so-called “Schooling period”, and the training is mostly trying stuff out then having other characters telling you are doing it wrong. Even experienced players would welcome tool tips during actions – for instance when reaching for your third alcoholic drink a warning bubble saying “May impare your judgement of interaction with opposite sex” would be helpful.
2) Lack of Save/Load function.
Given the lack of in-game hints the lack of a Save Game function would appear to be a major omission. When attempting an action, the failure of which would have negative consequence, it would handy if we could return to a point just before so we can avoid the effects of making a poor choice with no guidance too many times. This would particularly useful during the ‘Teenage Romance’ sub game, for which there is no documentation. Frankly all the Romance sub-games are difficult and confusing, and prone to leaving you frustrated. The Rom-Com training package glosses over much of the difficulties.
3) Effects of other players.
I note the IPCC Yahoo group has found a bug within the global interaction algorithms. Apparently this could cause the game world to end prematurely based purely on the actions of other players on different servers. Even if this is fixable, it is apparent that servers in Africa and Asia are suffering DDOS attacks by resource usage elsewhere.
4) Random Character generation.
Not only does this make it near impossible to achieve some tasks against some players who ‘got lucky’ during the generation process, but that In-Game Credits are not accessible to all, leaving some downloads unavailable to most people- for instance “Sports Car” and “Big House” are two that spring to mind.
5) Non Linear Game play.
“Do boring/repetitive task or starve” doesn’t really count as open-ended.
6) Experience Points
Referenced frequently by the ‘Job’ sub-games, but there is no onscreen count to let you know how you are doing. Though they appear to be influenced by various tasks/games, there is no indication at the rate of accrual, so you can’t tell whether the amount of XP is worth it. Additionally some of these sub-games appear to over- or under- award XP: For instance “Art History” and “Engineering” in the ‘University Zone’ often cost the same number of credits, but rumour on the Fan forums is they award different XP. Is this true?
6a) Rumour on the ‘Buddah’ Yahoo group is that there is a kind of XP called Karma. Is this true as it is not referenced in any of the training/instructions? They claim this allows a second character to be started.
7) End Game routines
I am approximately half way through. According to more experienced players game experience dramatically reduces during the later stages, with your character becoming slower and less responsive. It has also been found that the graphics and sound settings deteriorate making it hard to follow the action. Did you know the ‘Hair’ colour setting can change spontaneously to ‘Grey’ and in male characters even ‘Flesh’? Additionally there are a number of bugs which can cause parts of the programme to just stop working altogether.
8.) Power-ups/Health Packs
While it is clear that some servers receive too many ‘Weapon packs’, there is a distinct lack of power-ups. I have repeatedly smashed any number of boxes, crates and other containers, and have yet to receive even one extra power. Additionally there are no health packs being generated. Did you mean these only to be available from players who have taken the “Doctor” quest?
I understand that in any product this ambitious there will always be a number of problems. Do you have any plans to produce a patch we could download?