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[Merged] Customer Support Ticket Response Times


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Just to toss in my own anecdotal evidence: I've only ever had pleasant and completely competent CS reps when I've had to contact support. I also see far more positive reactions from those who have had to contact support than I do negative. So, I have to disagree with the notion of Anet's CS being "infamously horrendous". That being said, I obviously haven't had interactions with every CS rep employed by Anet. So, there could definitely some language barrier problems happening that I just haven't personally seen.

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I'm sorry that the OP had bad experiences. If they really want to help, they should offer specific details about what happened, without assuming they know the cause. Ideally, they should start by opening up a conversation with a senior support person and identify which tickets and why the OP considered the service to be poor.

There's nothing in the current original post that would allow ANet to figure out what might need to change. It's all vague and generic, full of assumptions and conclusions without evidence.

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Every member of our Customer Support team is located in the United States. I'm not going to ask for personal information, such as every individual's country of origin. But I strongly believe that the vast majority of our agents -- if not all our agents -- are native English speakers, and Americans, to boot.

You are more than welcome to report any concerns you have to the CS Team. You may respond the the ticket to ask that your issue be escalated to a supervisor, explaining (respectfully, please) why you found your experience to be less than acceptable.

As you have read, several other forum members have had a good experience with CS, and while any team that is comprised of human beings cannot possibly be 100% perfect, overall I believe our players are satisfied. Some of what you've stated, and implied, sounds negative and a little pejorative. Saying you want to "make things better" by impugning the competence and linguistic skill of anyone who is not a Native (sic) speaker hardly seems a good basis for a civil conversation. If you want to make things better, please do share your concerns with a CS supervisor.

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My experience with ANet Customer Service (and I've dealt with them on several occasions over the years. I am a GW1 veteran) has been that they are top notch in quality and professionalism. Can I say the replies I got were always what I had hoped? No, but they weren't unexpected either when they were a bit disappointing. Those were times when I knew going in that my request was a long shot.

However, every time I have interacted with their customer service, I got the epitome of professionalism and good service.

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@"Arlette.9684"You want to help CS? Be positive and leave the rumor mill to those who rumor.

Your perception is one sided for many reasons:

  1. People didn't get what they thought they could from CS
  2. People got infractions for doing something wrong or stupid
  3. People are upset that "other people" are getting away with something yet are they really?
  4. Posts get closed/deleted by author's request. I have done it a few times when it has gone off topic
  5. Posts get closed/deleted because we have enough toxicity and don't need more
  6. Posts get closed/deleted for violating TOS
  7. Posts get closed/deleted for misinformation or talking about ways to circumvent the "system"
  8. The list goes on

CS nor Gaile nor others that respond to this forum can give you information pertaining to someone's complaint for privacy reasons and maybe because they just don't feel the need. Just because you see a post here, elsewhere or a video does not generally tell the whole story. I am sure there are legitimate complaints here and there and I am sure when someone calls out a CS rep, ANET looks into the matter.

I used to love the mods over at WoW forums when someone would come on there...complain...leave a big stink and then the mod would come and provide the proof and then POOF the author deleted his comment but couldn't delete the post. Six years ago and not sure how it is now. I would LOOOOOOOVE to see that here.

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I don't believe for a second that the majority of GW2 players that submit tickets are dissatisfied with the results. I run a GW2 FB group that has over 12,000 members and I can tell you in almost four years since the creation of that group, 99% of posts, comments and replies about the CS team have overwhelmingly shown complete satisfaction in how well tickets are answered and problems solved. In fact, most people that come from other games have been blown away by how much better GW2 CS is far superior than other games and comment about that frequently.

We've also had several people run into problems. Other group members guided them in how to submit a ticket. Every single time the member with the issue would report a very positive experience with CS.

You said if Anet took a survey right now, the results would be less than stellar. I disagree.

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I have spent a lot of time, since launch, in the Account Support sub-forum, and, for the most part, the only complaints about ArenaNet Support come about when there is a high volume of tickets, and responses are delayed. Very seldom is there complaints about the actual service; except, of course, when posters claim they've done nothing wrong, and been actioned. In most of those cases, it turns out they were less than truthful about the issue.There are cases where false positives have occurred, as well as human error; these seem to be corrected, usually, once escalated to superiors.

I could have been one of those dissatisfied with the CS Team; my account was once 'permanently banned' for Gold-selling, but after working with the CS Team, I was able to re-gain access to my account.

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@costepj.5120 said:

@Blude.6812 said:2 thumbs up, but I won't (can 't) say more, but there does seem to be a disconnect with understanding the nuances of the english language.

That's always going to be a risk when you are dealing with an American company!

What is it that you are saying here? That Americans intrinsically are unable to communicate in English? That the linguistic skills of a citizenry that exceeds 320 million is substandard when compared to... actually, to what are you comparing Americans? I'm pretty good with nuance, and I can tell you I'm not pleased with yours. :D So perhaps you can explain the meaning behind what I sense is a sweeping and wholly-unacceptable comment?

@Skynet.7201 said:I don't believe for a second that the majority of GW2 players that submit tickets are dissatisfied with the results. I run a GW2 FB group that has over 12,000 members and I can tell you in almost four years since the creation of that group, 99% of posts, comments and replies about the CS team have overwhelmingly shown complete satisfaction in how well tickets are answered and problems solved. In fact, most people that come from other games have been blown away by how much better GW2 CS is far superior than other games and comment about that frequently.

We've also had several people run into problems. Other group members guided them in how to submit a ticket. Every single time the member with the issue would report a very positive experience with CS.

You said if Anet took a survey right now, the results would be less than stellar. I disagree.

I'm glad that you shared this, since it's based on external observation and can be said, I believe, to be quite impartial.

@Inculpatus cedo.9234 said:I have spent a lot of time, since launch, in the Account Support sub-forum, and, for the most part, the only complaints about ArenaNet Support come about when there is a high volume of tickets, and responses are delayed. Very seldom is there complaints about the actual service; except, of course, when posters claim they've done nothing wrong, and been actioned. In most of those cases, it turns out they were less than truthful about the issue.There are cases where false positives have occurred, as well as human error; these seem to be corrected, usually, once escalated to superiors.

I could have been one of those dissatisfied with the CS Team; my account was once 'permanently banned' for Gold-selling, but after working with the CS Team, I was able to re-gain access to my account.

This is important: Working with CS solves nearly all issues, and the more one endeavors to do that, the better the outcome is likely to be!

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Famously horrendous customer service? All I ever hear in game and on the forums is how superior it is to every other MMO. My experience is that they will always try and help you unless your agent either has an offday or has been misinformed (like the recent beta toon wipe where they genuinely believed it had occured and ofc it hadn't, but that was really their fault). That is where escalating a concern comes into play.

The only other time is a person has been rude to a service agent. One of my first ever tickets I would not say I conducted myself "correctly" and as I result I didn't get anywhere and they shut me off. Frankly, that was understandable given my attitude.

A lot of the bad feedback you hear always comes from hearing one side of the story and usually comes with some hidden facts players choose not to divulge or a simple case of not reading the ToS in game/forums and then kicking off when the rules are enforced. There will always be some bad examples, agents are human after all, but it isn't a consistent enough theme for anyone to be concerned over.

I'd say the service agents for this game in my experience and those of thousands of others has actually been "famously excellent".

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@Gaile Gray.6029 said:

@Blude.6812 said:2 thumbs up, but I won't (can 't) say more, but there does seem to be a disconnect with understanding the nuances of the english language.

That's always going to be a risk when you are dealing with an American company!

What is it that you are saying here? That Americans intrinsically are unable to communicate in English? That the linguistic skills of a citizenry that exceeds 320 million is substandard when compared to... actually, to what
are
you comparing Americans? I'm pretty good with nuance, and I can tell you I'm not pleased with yours. :D So perhaps you can explain the meaning behind what I sense is a sweeping and wholly-unacceptable comment?

@Skynet.7201 said:I don't believe for a second that the majority of GW2 players that submit tickets are dissatisfied with the results. I run a GW2 FB group that has over 12,000 members and I can tell you in almost four years since the creation of that group, 99% of posts, comments and replies about the CS team have overwhelmingly shown complete satisfaction in how well tickets are answered and problems solved. In fact, most people that come from other games have been blown away by how much better GW2 CS is far superior than other games and comment about that frequently.

We've also had several people run into problems. Other group members guided them in how to submit a ticket. Every single time the member with the issue would report a very positive experience with CS.

You said if Anet took a survey right now, the results would be less than stellar. I disagree.

I'm glad that you shared this, since it's based on external observation and can be said, I believe, to be quite impartial.

@Inculpatus cedo.9234 said:I have spent a lot of time, since launch, in the Account Support sub-forum, and, for the most part, the only complaints about ArenaNet Support come about when there is a high volume of tickets, and responses are delayed. Very seldom is there complaints about the actual service; except, of course, when posters claim they've done nothing wrong, and been actioned. In most of those cases, it turns out they were less than truthful about the issue.There are cases where false positives have occurred, as well as human error; these seem to be corrected, usually, once escalated to superiors.

I could have been one of those dissatisfied with the CS Team; my account was once 'permanently banned' for Gold-selling, but after working with the CS Team, I was able to re-gain access to my account.

This is important: Working with CS solves nearly all issues, and the more one endeavors to do that, the better the outcome is likely to be!

If you were referring to what I said about the language, it wasn't about Support requests and the Support Team. They do their job and other than extended wait times during busy times. new releases etc. , they do their job, help and restore for those that have a legitimate issue and deal with those that don't. I should have been more clear. It was more about moderation not the CS team. So this was likely not the thread for me to comment on other than the OP jumped between forum moderation and CS ticket support. Thanks for the response and clarification.

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I think this is one of a few default assumptions/accusations when someone can't get the answer they want from customer support. In a previous job I worked on a helpline and more than once someone accused me of being unable to understand English and/or rigidly sticking to a script (because I was incapable of saying anything else because I didn't understand their question or my own answer) when the actual problem was I wasn't telling them what they wanted to hear. More often than not I was telling them what they wanted was illegal - and listing all 4 laws they'd break and exactly what they said. (And if you want an example of how horribly complicated English can be check out UK law.)

3 of my colleagues were referred to by different callers as "the foreign one" or "the one who doesn't speak English" - two because they had first names the caller wasn't familiar with and one because he had "a funny accent" - he's from Cumbria, so sure his accent is funny but it's not foreign. Oddly enough the one person in the team who was foreign - German specifically - never got called that.

I'm surprised to see someone say that about Anet though. I've always heard the opposite - that customer support for this game is better than average and better than people's experience with other games has lead them to expect. It's certainly better than I've experienced for other games, mainly because the reply is always from a person and not a computer spitting out a generic reply based on a few "key" words which more than likely has nothing to do with the actual question.

I have heard some people complain that the forum moderators are overly strict but that's not been my experience. I've had my share of warnings and deleted posts but as much as I don't like to admit it they were deserved, usually the result of posts made when I should have just admitted I've had a bad day and gone to bed. It is annoying when a conversation naturally drifts and then we get pulled up for being off-topic, but I can understand why they do it.

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@Gaile Gray.6029 said:

@Blude.6812 said:2 thumbs up, but I won't (can 't) say more, but there does seem to be a disconnect with understanding the nuances of the english language.

That's always going to be a risk when you are dealing with an American company!

What is it that you are saying here? That Americans intrinsically are unable to communicate in English? That the linguistic skills of a citizenry that exceeds 320 million is substandard when compared to... actually, to what
are
you comparing Americans? I'm pretty good with nuance, and I can tell you I'm not pleased with yours. :D So perhaps you can explain the meaning behind what I sense is a sweeping and wholly-unacceptable comment?

The following comment in meant mostly in jest, but it does sort of bring a point home. It's not that American's are intrinsically unable to communicate in English, it's that we don't actually speak English anymore...we should really rename what we speak to American English...to differentiate from the Queen's English or that English spoken in England. I firmly believe our language is sufficiently different from theirs to warrant this change, though it's a long shot it will ever happen. Also, this brings up the basic fact that though everyone is taught English in school, you still end up with regional dialects...aka accents, of course that only applies to the spoken word. Written words should have the same meaning whether it's East, West, North or South...well, should being the operative word.

Having said that, the few times I've had to contact CS have been positive. I might've had to reply to a response rewording my original request to make it more clearer, but that's only because there are so many words that are similar and changing a word here and there can make all the difference in the world.

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@Zaklex.6308 said:

@Blude.6812 said:2 thumbs up, but I won't (can 't) say more, but there does seem to be a disconnect with understanding the nuances of the english language.

That's always going to be a risk when you are dealing with an American company!

What is it that you are saying here? That Americans intrinsically are unable to communicate in English? That the linguistic skills of a citizenry that exceeds 320 million is substandard when compared to... actually, to what
are
you comparing Americans? I'm pretty good with nuance, and I can tell you I'm not pleased with yours. :D So perhaps you can explain the meaning behind what I sense is a sweeping and wholly-unacceptable comment?

The following comment in meant mostly in jest, but it does sort of bring a point home. It's not that American's are intrinsically unable to communicate in English, it's that we don't actually speak English anymore...we should really rename what we speak to American English...to differentiate from the Queen's English or that English spoken in England. I firmly believe our language is sufficiently different from theirs to warrant this change, though it's a long shot it will ever happen. Also, this brings up the basic fact that though everyone is taught English in school, you still end up with regional dialects...aka accents, of course that only applies to the spoken word. Written words should have the same meaning whether it's East, West, North or South...well, should being the operative word.

Having said that, the few times I've had to contact CS have been positive. I might've had to reply to a response rewording my original request to make it more clearer, but that's only because there are so many words that are similar and changing a word here and there can make all the difference in the world.

As a native speaker of English English (born and raised about 20 miles outside London) I really don't think American English (which is what we call it over here) is that different. Sure there's differences and sometimes they can be confusing - I once accidentally disappointed a group of American children by telling them we'd be doing some activities with a torch; I meant a flashlight and they thought I meant a flaming stick. But for me speaking to Americans is generally no more confusing that speaking to someone from Scotland. Possibly easier because we get a lot of American English from TV.

I think the most difficult part can be how we use humour, and especially sarcasm. It's a subtle difference but I think when an American is being sarcastic that means they're insulting you, whereas when a British person uses it they can mean that, or they can just be making a joke, or (more likely) it's self-depreciating humour and they're insulting themselves. Written sarcasm doesn't come across well to begin with and that can make it even more difficult.

I think that might be what's happened here - in spite of what I said above it's a common joke over here that Americans do not actually understand English, or that what they call English isn't really. But the joke is everyone knows that's not really true. Doesn't work so well online when the tone doesn't always come across and not all your readers are in on the joke.

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@Arlette.9684 said:As per my personal observations, and some videos I've seen with other players interactions with ANet's infamously horrendous customer service, I have to ask... Is @ArenaNet using Native speaker customer support, or are you following the EA model and outsourcing off country (think India/Iran) for customer reps?

It just seems to me that a whole lot of threads on this forums get closed for reasons that just make me think, the rep had no idea what was being discussed aka didn't understand what was being said. Same problem seems to occur with GM support ticket responses. I cannot stress just how many times I've gotten a GM response to a ticket that made ABSOLUTELY no sense in the context of the ticket I filed.

So can we please get an @ArenaNet employee to clear the air and confirm or deny my suspicions. I'm sure I'm not the only one thinking it.The more I think about this the more I get flashbacks of Bioware and SW:ToR. Bioware, arguably one of the greatest RPG developers and story tellers of our time got railroaded by poor customer support for the game they spent 300 mil $ developing. Is ANet following in their footsteps and what steps are being taken to improve your customer service department.Cuz let's face it, if you send every user a survey about it right now, you'll find the feedback to be, less than stellar.

Feel free to comment, in a respectful way so the thread doesn't get locked. I certainly don't want someone to take offense to the topic and lock it.Let me state right off the bat,I AM IN NO WAY TRYING TO OFFEND THE ARENANET CUSTOMER SERVICE TEAM, I'M TRYING TO HELP THEM AND THE GAME AS A WHOLE IN PROMOTING IMPROVED CUSTOMER SERVICE EXPERIENCE FOR ALL OF US, THE CUSTOMERS.

Regards.

Not really sure what you are going on about, but I find A-net customer support to be top notch. There may be things to complain about, but customer support is not one of them.

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Customer service is indeed a very important part of any company, gaming or otherwise. In all my numerous years of gaming I've only had to deal with CS a handful of times. The first one was in the mid-nineties when Duke 3D was all the rage and I had asked support for a problem at 3D Realms and I got all my answers in printed form in the mail (If you ever see this, Dennis "Headroom" Desmeth, I remember your help and big thanks again). The second time was with ANet a couple of years ago regarding my Guild Wars account because my email address had changed and I got 5 stars service regarding that matter. The third time was a minor issue with Witcher 3 and CD Projekt Red resolved my problem in mere hours.

Since I don't have negative CS experience I tend to believe that sometimes it's just a matter of miscommunication. Clear things up, be concise, be precise, but above all be polite and I'm sure CS will shine through.

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@Gaile Gray.6029 said:

@Blude.6812 said:2 thumbs up, but I won't (can 't) say more, but there does seem to be a disconnect with understanding the nuances of the english language.

That's always going to be a risk when you are dealing with an American company!

What is it that you are saying here? That Americans intrinsically are unable to communicate in English? That the linguistic skills of a citizenry that exceeds 320 million is substandard when compared to... actually, to what
are
you comparing Americans? I'm pretty good with nuance, and I can tell you I'm not pleased with yours. :D So perhaps you can explain the meaning behind what I sense is a sweeping and wholly-unacceptable comment?

I was alluding to the fact that Americans don't use English; they use American. The Irish writer George Bernard Shaw is attributed as saying 'England and America are two countries divided by a common language'. My post wasn't a criticism of Americans (and certainly not Anet customer service, who I've had almost no dealings with), just a reflection of how the language (and its cultural context) has evolved.Regardless, picking nuance out of what is written in email responses or forum posts is always going to be challenging. When my customer submits a written work request, the first step is invariably a requirements gathering workshop so we can determine what they are actually asking for. And that rarely matches our first interpretation.
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@Danikat.8537 said:

@Blude.6812 said:2 thumbs up, but I won't (can 't) say more, but there does seem to be a disconnect with understanding the nuances of the english language.

That's always going to be a risk when you are dealing with an American company!

What is it that you are saying here? That Americans intrinsically are unable to communicate in English? That the linguistic skills of a citizenry that exceeds 320 million is substandard when compared to... actually, to what
are
you comparing Americans? I'm pretty good with nuance, and I can tell you I'm not pleased with yours. :D So perhaps you can explain the meaning behind what I sense is a sweeping and wholly-unacceptable comment?

The following comment in meant mostly in jest, but it does sort of bring a point home. It's not that American's are intrinsically unable to communicate in English, it's that we don't actually speak English anymore...we should really rename what we speak to American English...to differentiate from the Queen's English or that English spoken in England. I firmly believe our language is sufficiently different from theirs to warrant this change, though it's a long shot it will ever happen. Also, this brings up the basic fact that though everyone is taught English in school, you still end up with regional dialects...aka accents, of course that only applies to the spoken word. Written words should have the same meaning whether it's East, West, North or South...well, should being the operative word.

Having said that, the few times I've had to contact CS have been positive. I might've had to reply to a response rewording my original request to make it more clearer, but that's only because there are so many words that are similar and changing a word here and there can make all the difference in the world.

As a native speaker of English English (born and raised about 20 miles outside London) I really don't think American English (which is what we call it over here) is that different. Sure there's differences and sometimes they can be confusing - I once accidentally disappointed a group of American children by telling them we'd be doing some activities with a torch; I meant a flashlight and they thought I meant a flaming stick. But for me speaking to Americans is generally no more confusing that speaking to someone from Scotland. Possibly easier because we get a lot of American English from TV.

What you are saying though is not that there aren't differences, but that you understand those differences. As do I. I've worked for a US company for over thirty years and I've spent a lot of time in the US, especially Texas. (Shout out to any Horned Frogs in this thread!) I've also worked with a lot of Scots people and for sure, understanding a slow Southern drawl is a whole lot easier than someone speaking Glaswegian after a couple of pints of Heavy :)
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