DDO: European players are still hanging in Limbo.

It has dropped a little off the radar, so let’s catch up with how the transfer of European DDO accounts from Codemasters to Turbine is going.

Essentially, it isn’t.

On August 19th, 2010, the European Dungeons and Dragons Online servers were shut down, meaning that the characters that European players have been playing since launch were lost to us. We are still waiting for our characters to be transferred, as promised, to the US servers.

What will happen to European characters?

Character data from the Codemasters European DDO service will be passed to Turbine after the Codemasters Online service is closed on August 19, 2010. We will be providing free character transfers to the new global service and players will be notified when the character transfer is available. As a welcome and thank you, Turbine is offering all current and former European players 5,000 free Turbine Points, worth nearly €50, when they transfer their character(s) to the global DDO service

We haven’t got those points yet either, seeing as we can’t get them until the accounts are transferred.

I have to ask “What the hell is going on over there?”. How hard can it be to convert/merge the character databases? Maybe it is really really hard, but if that is the case then they shouldn’t have shut down the European servers until it was ready! The players may have had minimal warning about the server shut-down, but Turbine certainly did not, and should have gotten the processes sorted.

I don’t know whether it is Turbine or Codemasters that is responsible for all this. They won’t tell us which it is, so I’m inclined to blame both.

The flow of information has been terrible, and any European player who dares ask about it on the US forums gets shouted down and told to reroll. Imagine, their characters have essentially been deleted, and wanting to know when they can have them back is considered to be unreasonable. I appreciate that going F2P has given DDO so many new players that keeping hold of old European players might not seem worth troubling over, but it has left a rather ashen taste in the mouths of many players. Turbine have not played fair with us. As European players we’re pretty used to getting the short end of the stick from US developers, but losing your characters for 9+ weeks is particularly special.

Unfortunately, Turbine has adopted a rather weird attitude towards us. This was a response to a European’s complaint that all Euro characters will end up on the Ghallanda server, and if we want them to end up somewhere else we have to pay $25 per character.

Originally Posted by Tarrant
We’re actually giving you your characters, and $50 worth of points, for free. If you don’t want to transfer your characters, you don’t have to. We’re not charging you anything, and are in fact making a kind gesture by bringing them here and giving you points.

Mr Tarrant. You obviously feel that we’re terribly ungrateful for the bounty you have bestowed upon us. Let us be clear here. YOU (that is, Turbine) chose to sell the rights to DDO in Europe to Codemasters, and YOU blocked Europeans from having a US DDO account even if we wanted to. (Until F2P began). Then someone , either you or Codemasters, decided to end that deal and shut down those European servers. I’m not privy to what went on within your companies, but I’ll tell you one thing I’m sure of: It was not the players who decided to go shutting the servers down. What you call a kind gesture, I call the bare minimum that I would expect, and that was when I thought the transfer would happen on the same day the servers were shut down. The eight week wait takes it far below what I would consider the bare minimum.

A kind gesture? What was the alternative? That you’d just shut the server down and not take the opportunity to gain all of Europe’s players, every one of them a fee-paying subscriber? That you’d make it known that you were happy to just shut down European servers at will, with no recourse for the players? That would have killed Euro-Lotro overnight. If you don’t actually want European players, just say so!

Please do not call how European DDO players have been treated “kind”. It just comes off as incredibly patronising. They’re paying customers who have been messed around on an epic scale.

We’re told that transfers will begin on the 25th of October. I truly hope it goes smoothly.

Update: The transfers have happened now. I’ve written an up to date guide for European players who move to the US servers here.

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