CSM9 Report: Week Five

And so this is my first weekly report in like a month from back on dry land. It’s been an incredibly interesting seven days for CSM9 and one I think we’ll look back to as one of those big, tentpole weeks in our tenure a year from now for all sorts of reasons. Kronos Kronos launched with what appeared to be zero problems. It sounded like one of the ‘cleanest’ expansion launches I can remember of recent times. The content had been locked in for a few weeks of course so there were no out and out surprises with the latest release but I have to say, the game looks more glorious than ever on my retina Macbook Pro. From a CSM perspective, I am pleased Kronos has launched smoothly. It’s not a guarantee that every six-weekly release from now on is going to be perfect but the last thing anyone wants with such a tight cycle are problems with the launch itself. And now the work on Cruis begins in earnest. Obviously I am very excited to see the industry stuff hitting TQ but I think some of the other features we ‘may’ see could be rather awesome too. Meetings Annoyingly, I didn’t make any of the meetings this week. My work offshore was rather busy this week – nature of the beast I guess. As always, Leeloo does awesome work sending us links to download the meetings if we can’t make them so we can at least listen to what was discussed and take relevant notes. We had four meetings – an intro with Team SpaceGlitter, a roadmap / development organisation meeting with (amongst others) CCP Seagull, our biweekly sprint meeting with Five-0 and one yesterday covering the recently announced internal changes. Given the recent announcements, I’m particularly disappointed in missing the latter one and I look forward to listening back to the recording once it becomes available. Thankfully, I did get some good summaries from the guys who made it. But more on this in a second. The level of access CCP continues to give us is astonishing. As a collective we are being worked hard but it shows the level of buy-in at many different levels from CCP in the CSM process and gives us a full picture of what is going on throughout the development of Eve Online. Of course, there are some things which can’t (and in my opinion, shouldn’t) be shared with the CSM… Layoffs On Thursday, it was reported that CCP has laid off 49 staff, the majority of which were from Reykjavik itself. Obviously this is devastating news and my thoughts and best wishes go out to those who lost their jobs as well as their friends and family. From our perspective, the first thing I should mention is that CSM9 did not know about these layoffs nor would I necessarily have expected us to. It is my opinion that the CSM exists to work with CCP developmental teams to make Eve Online a better game. It is not the CSM’s responsibility to delve into corporate HR issues such as hires, wages, redundancies, etc. Of course, it would be nice to think that if the CSM is doing it’s job well, it could in some small way contribute to layoffs could being avoided but one does not necessarily follow the other for all sorts of reasons. As mentioned earlier, on Friday the CSM had a meeting with some of the key personnel at CCP covering some of the details of the redundancies and what it means for the company going forward. Following that meeting, CSM9 does not have a list of everyone who has left the company as a result of these layoffs nor do we know the exact reasons why because it is none of our business. In exactly the same way I wouldn’t expect to know a certain developer’s salary, the CSM is not responsible for what are HR issues – it simply isn’t our jurisdiction. Now, I’m well aware it isn’t quite as simple as that. Some people may feel that those layoffs are indicative of a malaise within CCP. I’d argue that in certain cases, laying people off could be healthy for a company. As sore as these redundancies undoubtedly are, CCP believes they are vital for the long term health of the company. In the meantime, I can promise you that CSM9 will continue to work with Eve Online developers to make New Eden the best place it can be. I think it’s fair to say that this has been cause for a lot of internal discussion from CSM9 in the past 48 hours or so. The only public statements from CSM members up to this point has been FunkyBacon’s widely-read and rather divisive thoughts on the subject and Mike Azariah’s short and to-the-point post on his blog.
I’m going to cut this week’s report off here. I’m sure Mynnna and Sugar will have some very interesting takes on this week’s events on their respective weekly reports.
Tags: csm, csm9, kronos

About the author

Xander Phoena

The good looking, funny, intelligent member of the team, Xander set up Crossing Zebras with Jeg in April 2012 mainly because he was talking too much about Eve on his other podcast. Playing the game for almost five years, Xander still has absolutely zero clue about how to actually play Eve but somehow still manages to talk a good game.