Since I’m sure this thread will deteriorate and given CGTalk‘s shitty moderation policies (and the Cinema 4D forum being moderated by Maxon staff to boot) be shut down, let me post Nigel‘s wise words reflecting the sad state of affairs here.
As for trying to get Maxon’s attention before and with my departure. Not something I’ve set out to do. The issues I have are similar to what others have been saying for ages. I’ve just become more vocal about these issues this year. In no particular order, Maxon has the following problems as I see them:
Price to high for Studio edition. The price would be fine if there was consistent development across the application. Instead something will get enhanced and then be left for years.
Recent upgrades have been a bit weak. Many areas of the program are now years behind the competition.
Almost a code of silence when it comes to communicating with their customers in social media. The Team Render thread here for example is probably the worst example of PR I’ve seen by a software company. Initially there was no response from Maxon. We’ve then had a few posts from lower level Maxon staff. Great but someone higher up should have dropped in and said “Sorry folks, we’ve stuffed up and we’re working on improving Team Render / Team Render Server”. That would have helped. We’re now at the stage we’re Maxon subsiduaries are acting as intermediaries between customers and Maxon H.Q. An improvement but why the hell can’t there be direct communication between customers and Maxon management / developers? And yes I have seen the developer post in the thread a couple of times but he kept a fairly low profile. Maybe I’ve got it all wrong and don’t understand things? I’m just going on what I see around the place with software developers and customers. We’re in a social media world but Maxon is still in the CB radio age and all the customers are out of range.
Suggestions from customers largely ignored unless they fit in with Maxon’s own development plans. Now I’m sure Maxon wouldn’t agree with this view but that’s the perception I have and I reckon many others have as well. See, if they interacted with their customers and I’m talking about management interacting with customers and not just a staffer talking off the record then things would be greatly improved. Maxon’s entire management should spend an hour or two browsing The Foundary / Modo forums and look how well The Foundary interacts with their customers.
Still selling boxed versions of C4D. Yes I know you can download C4D from some resellers but by having a boxed version means a significant lead in time before release date. Virtually everyone else has gone to downloads only. This means they can be bug fixing / coding up until release date or a couple of weeks before.
I can’t buy C4D from a US reseller / shop around for the best price. I bought Modo 801 for $1299 from a US reseller, saving myself $200 from buying direct from The Foundary. I then downloaded it from my Foundary account as if I had purchased direct from them. I also receive a free upgrade to 901. The same US reseller isn’t allowed to sell to me as ordered not to by Maxon. Just crazy. I’m not interested in Maxon’s excuses about support, regional prices. It’s a global / digital world out there and I can buy virtually any software application from anyone without any restrictions.
Now when you combine all the above with Modo 901 delivering an awesome update and tools that I as a hobbyist use and and can use now rather than waiting another 10 years for C4D to catch up (if ever) then combined with my own personal desire to step back from running a forum and have more time for my cycling and my own 3D work it’s a no brainer to jump ship. I jumped ship before from Truespace when Truespace 7 was in alpha stage as I thought they had completely lost the plot. In time I was proven right as they never properly finished it and then eventually were closed down when Microsoft pulled the plug after buying them. Now I don’t think Maxon is in the same boat and they are in a much better position than Truespace was but the writing is on the wall that they need to move with the times. The thing is a lot of what I’ve harped on about has nothing to do with writing software so isn’t that hard to fix if there was a willingness to do so. However, I’m not sure there is a willingness to move with the times. Maybe a year or two of lower sales may make them wake up?
Edit: I should add, that over the years the Maxon people I have come into contact with have been very pleasant to deal with. Thanks for that.
Now it’s not the time to gloat and we all have our own special personal relation with the companies producing our favorite tools, but personally I find so much truth in there and it reflects my own decision earlier this year. Maxon are living in the past and are hanging on to a somewhat self-deluded view of their product, when in fact for years they have only been serving some niche markets and trying to catch up without ever getting a foot into the door in other areas. Someone, who has been on their Beta for the last decade and runs a Cinema 4D forum, jumping ship three months before R17 is due is indeed very telling…