Nice long response to this very defensive email I received...Dear |ce,
I'm very sorry to hear about your experience working with Max on
resolving the issue.
For the record, we have been making some major (and some might say
overdue) changes to our support structure to prioritize support for PC
games. I have been working with quite a few folks, including our friends
in Europe to improve our customers' experience. I'm sorry that we
weren't able to make improvements fast enough to catch and solve your
Also for the record, I want to say that Max did an admirable job and
stayed on your side trying to help you solve the problem even as you
treated him quite rudely and posted disparaging remarks about him in the
Though you may not see the logic from your point of view (and you may
not understand how RAM and disk transfer modes can be related to install
errors and thusly to missing files) Max responded sequentially with the
most common solutions that fit symptoms similar to the ones you are
experiencing. This is exactly what he is trained to do. He explained
things clearly and didn't make any assumptions about your level of
computer knowledge until you demonstrated your "hacker" skills by
circumventing the usual installation methods. When he was unable to
diagnose the problem, he stated in email dated 10/22 that he would
continue to research the issue on your behalf. The issue had been
entered into an "unsolved problems" queue as of 10/22, and we were
exploring avenues of solving the problem, including contact with our
sister department in England and the game's developer The Creative
Assembly in Australia.
The solutions that you asked of him, such as direct transfer of
individual files to you from Sega or burning of additional discs, are
not within his or my power to do as per intellectual property agreements
we maintain with our developers.
When he offered to test your discs personally, you did not accept, and
when he offered you my contact info you did not contact me but chose
instead to continue expressing your anger with Max. We all understand
the frustration that stems from long hours trying to get a piece of
software working on a PC - we've all been there too many times. It can
be quite a mess with thousands of different bits of code, drivers,
hardware, firmware, etc interacting often in unexpected ways.
Please understand that we are trying to develop an effective permanent
solution for PC support, but that it is not an easy process and that it
is quite common for us to find problems in users' systems that are
unrelated to our games. We will continue to work with you to resolve the
issue as our resources allow, and request that you please proceed with
an understanding of where we currently stand and that we are doing all
we can to solve a very difficult problem.
Sega of America
 Now that the rapid fire emails have ceased (probably for the night, hopefully *just* for tonight, I look forward to hearing from them again), and they're aware of this thread and the fact that we exist, I believe I'll post up an open-note to Sega.Eric,
Thank you for taking the opportunity to review the issue and I would very much appreciate a prompt solution to the issue at hand. You have every bit of technical information which has been asked of me.
As to my anger, well, let's address this directly with a nice story.
3 weeks ago I purchased a game for $40 at a local Wal Mart intending to play and review it for Tazzone.com. I bought this product in good faith that your company, it's producer, would stand behind it as any software company should. After installing this product according to the instructions provided within the user's manual (yes, I'm a good techie, I rtfm quite frequently), the product failed to perform. Since this problem surfaced, I've been passed across two different departments, found one person (Max) who was willing to attempt to help me (kudos to him - in truth he's the ONLY one to date) but only with a 'standard answer' he sent via a website link. Since this solution didn't work he, being a person not having permissions or access to get into the meat of the issue, could not assist me further. I asked that my case be escalated to someone who did have said accesses - namely you, to be met with defensiveness on how badly I've behaved and how angry I've become. Sir, I am quite outraged, you are correct.
Until today Max had not been told by me about the article review or TazForums, so unless he's a member there as well, he was probably quite unaware of any 'disparaging remarks' made about him therein. I don't fault Max one bit, I fault Sega Technical support. In fact, to be fair, all emails between us have been quoted directly in this thread - changing only my name to protect my anonymity there. This email and response are no exception.
As far as my technical knowledge is concerned, it is of no relevance to this issue. My 'hacking' skills are merely ways of attempting work-arounds when a problem arises, much like your company's are - I tried one trick, it didn't work, I kept yelling for help.
My case has been entered into an 'unsolved problems' queue. This reads to me like a 'dead letter' box - a place to conveniently park real problems forever and quietly forget them, or pass them onto someone else. Your sister department in the UK passed this case onto you at the outset, but then you'd probably know that if you'd bothered reading the email chain between Max and myself.
As for the solutions I asked of him, I want nothing more than to fix the problem at hand. As for sending my discs in to be tested, I only received word that this could be done about 3 hours ago now, in my final email receipt from Max, so of course I've not yet availed myself of this option. I'm beginning to think, however, that I won't - since I will not release anything material to this case without retaining full master copies for myself. Send me a new copy of the game - if it runs, I'll send you the cd's in my possession. If it doesn't, you'll get them back.
You tell me to please understand that developing a solid PC technical support system isn't easy and that it's quite common to find issues in user's machines completely unrelated to your software. This reads to me as 'it's not our problem, it's yours' - the same response I've been getting from your firm. Sir, I have a state of the art system designed for gaming. Blizzard's World of Warcraft has no issues running on my machine. Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion or the expansions don't either. I can run The Sims (insert version and expansion ad infinitum here) with no problems whatsoever. Shall I list all the games I have that DO actually work on my machine? Why can't yours?
Perhaps the issue lies in the fact that there are certain 'standards' and 'protocols' which guide and direct coding for machine softwares and that some companies fail to adhere to these standards and protocols, creating issues with their software on many machines? I find it uncanny that YOUR software will run neither on my desktop or laptop systems, nor on my wife's desktop system, nor on her laptop, which are 4 entirely different machines by different manufacturers.
Please, feel free to fix the problem. I look forward to hearing from you with a solution.
They might review it, they might not. Me, I just want the game to work. *sigh*I put this in a quote box but it's original writing, not sent to anyone or posted anywhere but here:
You were correct in informing me you were quite overdue for changing up your technical support departments in order to better serve your customers, but based on what I've seen from your 'new' system, I'd be deathly afraid to see an example of what your old one was like.
To date there has been precisely *one* other software package which did not run on this machine, a Velocity Micro Gamer's Edge (2006 version) stock from the factory with one change in hardware: I maxxed the ram to 4 gigabytes from the 1 gig it came with. All ram in my system is manufactured by PNY, in 1 gig sticks, purchased at Best Buy in the same purchase off the same shelf. It was configured in my machine by me (I am an A+ certified hardware technician, among other things) and has performed admirably to date, said software being Hitman Blood Money. The issue with their software was random lockups from the startup screen, not an installation or file transfer issue as is yours. That software was returned to the store for full refund after an 'unresolvable' issue was encountered (much as in this case) by their technical support department. The difference between the two cases is that yours was for review here, while theirs was not. I'd mentioned earlier in this very thread that I'd returned the software to whence it was purchased for refund. The fact is I got to the front door of the store, turned and left because I truly don't want this to occur with your software. Instead I truly do want to play this game and properly review it for the masses who are wasting their time reading instead about a dispute with technical support. Please don't force me to do this and leave a bad review up for the world to see. I wonder how many customers this never-ending thread has cost you already?
No direct response to this is necessary, it's merely an open letter. If you wish to address it you may reach me at my email, which is well in the hands of your support system.