Wednesday, April 23, 2008

EAL Herald Closed

Because of the stymied growth from EAL and the lack of communication between players and devs, the EAL Herald has decided to shut down operations. We feel that EAL is on the end of it's rope and there's no where else to go but down.

We would like to thank all of the hundreds of people who visited our site daily and we hope to see you again someday.

EAL Staff

Monday, April 7, 2008

Friendliest Sim in EAL: An Interview w/ Debbie Simth

Meet Debbie Simth, she is the friendliest sim in EA-Land and has over 300 friends to prove it.

EA Land Herald: Tell us a little about your sim and her simmy ways
Debbie Simth: Well, I came back after a two year absence. And I'm SO glad I did.

EALH: What made you return?
DS: I just really missed it. I went to EA to find out if the discs were still available and found the downloads. I was VERY fortunate to have come back at the perfect time.

EALH: So, did you ever think you would become the nicest sim in EAL?
DS: LOL - I think what I actually am is the most compulsive avatar in EAL. I decided about two weeks ago that I needed more friends, and I just haven't' been able to stop.

EALH: Haha, I noticed you're not that old (46 days old), must have been alot of work.
DS: It probably has, but I play a lot of hours a day. It's been so much fun, though, it just doesn't seem like work. If it weren't for the fact that I'm trying to carry skills without locks I could probably have more. But I keep a careful eye on the skills

EALH: Was it ever your goal to be the nicest sim?
DS: No, that just happened when I couldn't stop LOL. It was my goal to be on all 3 of the lists, though

EALH: And are you?
DS: Yes, I'm proud to say I have reached that goal.

EALH: How do you stay in touch with 300 sims?
DS: I spend at least 2 hours a day making sure the links don't drop below 75. After that, I spend another hour serenading people I havn't previously met. Finally - I check the people in the room I am near to being friends with, and finish the link. That takes about another hour.

EALH: It sounds like a chore?
DS: Well, I'm having so much fun with it, it doesn't seem like a chore : ) So it's good. When it start feeling like work I'll find another goal to work on.

EALH: What perks, if any, do you receive?
DS: Hmmmmmm. I guess you could count this interview as a "perk". Other than that I haven't really noticed anything. I have my personal sense of accomplishment and that makes me happy: ). It is really amazing to me that behind all these avatar friends are real honest to goodness people- from all over the world. WOW

EALH: Do you ever try to use your status to your advantage? lol or flaunt it to your 300 friends? lol
DS: LOL- I have no extra time for that! I hope I haven't flaunted it - but I AM human. I guess you'd have to ask others about that.

EALH: What feature would you most like to see added to EAL in the future?
DS: I hadn't really thought about that. I like the new features ( I get to see Jack Sparrow in the house I'm in now!), but as for new things I guess I'm not creative enough to "dream" what could be. I just roll with the flow.

EALH: Thank you so much Debbie for agreeing to this interview :)
DS: Thank you for asking! It was fun : )

Friday, April 4, 2008

Player's Choice - Part 1: Our Voice

(Because some players complained that the Special Reports are too long, I'll be breaking them down into 3 parts for this month, Enjoy)

As EAL is starting to form together as a big post-merge community, we're finding that our choices for sources of news and feedback is not only limited but also discouraging.

The Sims Online(older EAL) used to host it's own message board at it's older site "". There, players could discuss problems and have actual one-on-one interactions with Maxis devs. With the major overhaul of the site in 2003 came the termination of the Official TSO boards. Players were left to scatter across the internet and find sites that had TSO boards. Stratics has been, since 2003, the most popular TSO/EAL message board for players to voice their concerns and feedback. Parizad comments that "Stratics is not the official EAL board" and that "EA and Stratics have no relations". Meaning there is still no one site for players to gather all of their information. Because of Stratics being the largest EAL fan community, it is dubbed by players as the "unofficial EAL boards." But posting at Stratics brings new TOS rules that were never present at the old TSO boards. Rules that deny you of helping others and protecting the community.
One TOS from Stratics states,

"C. Personal attacks are prohibited. This specifically means any text/post that is blatantly attacking another person on or off the forum, especially in a personal way. This includes accusing anyone of cheating, using exploits, or scamming. Stratics does not have the ability to follow up on these claims to verify their validity, therefore they are not allowed. "

The advocates for the rule say that it protects the misaccused or innocent. But how many times has a player cried wolf over scams? For a recent example, I'll use the Bradleys. The Bradleys are the most well-known scammers in EAL. A few weeks ago the EA devs finally took care of the problem by terminating their accounts. The EAL Herald reported on it(exclusive ;) )and it so happened that we had a link on the Stratics board. The link did not even lead directly to the article. We were instantly messaged by Stratics to take down the article or remove the link from their site. We found that the truth should remain lit so we deleted our link on the Stratics site and parted ways. Stratics dosent realize how many sims.....avatars will get scammed in EAL because of the rules that restrict us from protecting other players. Even when the scammers are well-known and the EA devs took serious action because of their scammings.

Players are starting to stop and stare at Stratics's TOS and reevaluate their choices. Players have started to create their own sites with boards on them for other players to talk and discuss EAL topics freely without having to limit their speech or thought. A few examples of these sites include EA-Land Mania, EA-Lander, and EA-Land Forum. Players see are starting to see how unfairly Stratics is treating the EAL players and how they will take advantage of their high membership for their own benefit. Players are also starting to see their choices grow from one to many, as we continue to grow as a community and keep our bond strong.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Parizad Speaks, "A few people came in to do nothing but bitch and moan..."

The following is a comment made by Parizad when the topic of the EA Town Hall Meeting schedule came up on Stratics.

"I'm going to wear my heart on my sleeve in this post.

We (the whole team) works crazy amount of hours each week. We try to make it to the Town Hall whenever we can. In the past, we tried to be there religiously. As time went on, we got busier and busier. I don't know if you guys noticed that I cut back the hours posted? We'll probably cut it back some more.

The last couple of times I was there, I was so busy that I knew, absolutely knew I'd have to work until 9 p.m. or later, but I went anyway. You know what happened? A few people came in to do nothing but bitch and moan about how much we sucked. They did not have any questions or issues. They only wanted to form a mob. They kept keeping the players that actually had questions from asking them.

You have to understand, the stuff you guys post about and the feedback we get in-game... the bugs, exploits, etc, we take those very seriously. We're keep pushing ourselves to make this game better for you guys. When people come in to do nothing but whine, and do not have any suggestions on how we can better this game, it really takes a toll on me. Like I said, we're stressed, working tons of hours, and often times these people are the straw that breaks the camel's back.

Often times, it is easier to just close down the Town Hall than it is to play into their hands by reacting to their diatribes.

I can help you guys, the community, sooooo much more with the things I do behind the scenes. Whenever I can, I'll go to the Town Hall. The times posted are more of a suggested schedule"

Well we brought the heat, they ran like hell from the kitchen.

-Via Stratics

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