Back in my post “In Defense of Gaming Company Forums” I expressed a little wish that gaming companies locate the gems in their community forums, like Blizzard does, and then post them to a page with RSS support, thus saving the lazy and the squeamish from having to venture into said forums.
RSS feeds and gaming company pages stayed in my brain. I noticed that my RSS reader had no gaming company feeds in it. I decided to rectify this situation. I figured some MMORPG game company sites must have RSS feeds for news. I figured I would go out and collect a bunch then maybe pare them back later.
I love RSS. It keeps me from having to remember to visit web sites to search for new items on a regular basis. It serves me, by bringing me content and it serves the web site by getting their content out to interested parties in a timely manner. Who couldn’t love RSS?
MMORPG game companies apparently.
I went to VirginWorlds.com and clicked on the link for every game in the Current MMORPGs list. I did not go nuts searching each site for an RSS feed or XML link. I went to each site’s news page and looked around thoroughly. If I could not find such a link in a minute or two, then it was either not there or too well hidden to be considered viable in any case.
In the end, out of THIRTY ONE web sites exactly ONE has an RSS feed for news and information.
Because of this, my new favorite game is… DARK AND LIGHT!
Actually, their feed is pretty crappy. You get a one line teaser and when you go to the page, you get the next couple of lines and have to click on another link to get to the full story.
But at least they have a feed! I will always know when there is fresh Dark and Light news.
Then I went though some of the Future MMORPGs listed. However, my resolve was beginning to fade by this point. This much effort for a blog entry? Isn’t this why I stick to commentary and narrative rather than news, because the research burden is so light?
Still, I found one more RSS feed. Star Trek Online has a feed for their news. The only news up there is from July, but they have a feed! God bless them, they have a feed. That is the important part. Well, that and showing that at least some game besides Dark and Light cares enough to get their news distributed to the lazy masses. I want to drive up to their offices and thank them for doing us at least that favor.
Now, a lot of the sites had a spot where you could sign up for an email newsletter. But that does not count in my book. I have signed up for a couple of those in the past. Those are actually collection points for the company marketing point to build up email lists. I have received very little actual news from any gaming company email list ever. I always know when there is an expansion to be purchased however.
And I imagine this is why there are no RSS feeds on these web sites. The company, usually the marketing department, wants to get an email address from you, or at least impress you with the pretty artwork on their site. Never mind that you would have to visit the site to get the RSS link in the first place.
Wake up gaming companies! Getting your news spread far and wide is a good thing! Give us RSS feeds! Help us help you!