Sony Online Entertainment president John Smedley has responded to the calls of angry Star Wars Galaxies fans demanding a withdrawal of the latest upgrade for the MMORPG.
More than 15,000 people have signed an online petition in protest against the Combat Upgrade. Petition organisers say Sony should have concentrated on fixing problems already in existence, rather than employing an upgrade which renders combat "generic, non-dynamic and very poorly designed."
SWG players report numerous bugs in the upgrade, and instances where items and experience have inexplicably disappeared. There are also complaints that SOE's customer service department has failed to deal with the problems, and that people posting negative comments on the game's official website have had their posts deleted - and in many cases, received a ban.
"We would like to appeal to both SOE and Lucasarts to cancel the Combat Upgrade and fix the game in its current form, instead of turning it into a generic online roleplaying game like EverQuest II," the petition states.
"All we wanted were minor changes, not a minor overhaul. We want to achieve the Star Wars feeling!!"
SOE president John Smedley has responded with a post on the SWG website, stating that Sony has seen the petition and is reading players' emails - and that he's even responded to some personally.
"In order to make the experience in SWG more diverse and to breathe new life into this game we felt it was important for us to entirely overhaul the current system and to make sure that it's balanced properly," says Smedley.
"Are we finished? Not by a long shot... We recognize there are problems that have arisen from this, and what I'd like to ask your help in doing is to target these problems so that we can knock them down very quickly.
"As you've seen in the last few days, the team is working tirelessly towards fixing any problems that have arisen, and with your help we're confident we can get the rest of them taken care of." You can read Smedley's response in full here.
But it may not be enough to placate some of the angrier fans, judging by sites like starwarsgalaxiessuccks.com.
It displays the SOE numbers to call if you want to "let them know how bad they f[ish]ed up", along with a gallery of screenshots subtitled: "HERE IS WHAT YOUR FANS ARE SAYING ONLINE SINCE YOU BANNED AND DELETED ALL OTHERS WHO SPOKE OUT ON YOUR F[LOWER]ING FORUMS YOU COMMUNISTS." Cheer up son, the new film's out in a couple of weeks.
We tried to contact Sony to find out if they really are a bunch of pinkos, but sadly no one was available for comment.