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What the crap, still no Beta ETA?

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  • ConstantineMerusConstantineMerus Member EpicPosts: 2,691
    Ever met someone whom you thought was perfect in every way but never called you and now 40 years have passed and your life is over and you don't even remember their face? 
    - Crowdfunding MMORPGs 
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  • BruceYeeBruceYee Member RarePosts: 1,690
    If the game doesn't go into beta 1 by 2022 I'll ask for a refund.
    KyleranJamesGoblinmeddyckXarko
  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 34,509
    BruceYee said:
    If the game doesn't go into beta 1 by 2022 I'll ask for a refund.
    So far you are winning the award for most patient.

    In my case I told Mark he could keep mine regardless how it all turns out.


    ConstantineMerusJamesGoblin

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    Just trying to live long enough to play a new, released MMORPG, playing POE at the moment.

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  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 34,509
    Just surprised to see him attempting to edit what the backers talk about on the forums.  Seems like a big departure from how they have handled things in the past.  They must truly be feeling the pressure.
    It seems pretty much in line with how CSE handled the forums in the past. I see nothing surprising with them asking the users to stop beating the dead horse and repeating over and over again that they're late on Beta 1. They've apologized like... 200 times already and even if we keep reminding them it's not going to change anything to the fact that Beta 1 has been delayed.

    Overall though I prefer the forums in which we're allowed to discuss whatever we want, but it's up to CSE to make the rules and up to me to visit this place or not.
    Users don't need more apologies, they just need reasonable dates for near future releases like beta 1, or good reasons why they can't be provided.
    ConstantineMerusMitara

    "See normal people, I'm not one of them" | G-Easy & Big Sean

    "I need to finish" - Christian Wolff: The Accountant

    Just trying to live long enough to play a new, released MMORPG, playing POE at the moment.

    Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

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  • ConstantineMerusConstantineMerus Member EpicPosts: 2,691
    Kyleran said:

    In my case I told Mark he could keep mine regardless how it all turns out.


    Funny thing is I told that exact same thing to my date the other night. She wasn't thrilled neither! :(
    JamesGoblinfrancis_baudmeddyckbcbullyKyleran
    Constantine, The Console Poster

    • "One of the most difficult tasks men can perform, however much others may despise it, is the invention of good games and it cannot be done by men out of touch with their instinctive selves." - Carl Jung
    • Song of the Week: Blackfield by Blackfield from Blackfield (2005)
    • Currently Playing: Devil May Cry 1
    • Favorite Drink: Bruichladdich Black Art 5th 1992
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  • ChicagoCubChicagoCub Member UncommonPosts: 380
    If you're a backer, it might be worth your time to do a little digging on the CU forums.  Looks like Mark Jacobs is starting to lose his shit about people discussing the delays.  He basically says, either drop it, or GTFO of the forums.  You guys think that's a good sign?
    Nah.  Venting on your backers?  What could go wrong?  Sounds like a solid business plan to me.
  • MitaraMitara Member UncommonPosts: 755
    I was well aware that the game designers would faul things up, they seem to always do that. Im still confident that MJ will get things done, although it would have been a good thing had they prepared things well enough from the start...
    meddyck
  • GavyneGavyne Member UncommonPosts: 116
    Building their own engine is the main cause of the delays.  It's hard enough to build your own game engine for big studios, they're trying to do it with a small team and very limited budget.  This likely also contributed to their difficulties in hiring, because they can't just hire any programmer, they have to hire the right ones capable of building a custom engine from scratch.

    Where as if you look at Ashes of Creation, another crowd funded game, they are using an existing established Unreal Engine 4.  Look at how much further ahead they are.  Hiring for them was probably a lot easier because all they had to do was to look for people experienced with Unreal Engine.

    Pantheon is using Unity engine.  Yes both have been hacked up and customized to death, but it's much easier to do that with established engines rather than building one from scratch like CU is doing.

    I've always thought it was a bad idea to want to create their own engine.  Not bad as in bad idea for the game.  But bad because given the size of their development team and budget, it just didn't seem like a good choice.

    Played: EQ1-AC1-DAOC-FFXI-L2-EQ2-WoW-LOTR-VG-WAR-GW2-ESO-BDO
    Waiting For: CU & Vanilla WoW

  • DvoraDvora Member UncommonPosts: 495
    Gynthazi said:
    For those that don't know, they DID run into massive design issues. A lot of code had to get scrapped and re-written [...]
    The ability system had to be re-written but not because of the design (it remained pretty much the same as the first iteration afaik), rather because CSE needed something more performant and versatile for the kind of gameplay they envisioned. I think that they've never blamed anyone specifically for this though. I guess CSE has its share of responsibility in the entire refactor of this system since they're supposed to oversee the work of the developers and if they figured out something went wrong only years later then visibly something went wrong on this side too. Overall though I believe that refactoring a major system isn't something uncommon in video games, especially in MMO, so maybe it was more or less inevitable and they had to go through all this.

    Bottom line, now from what I've heard our ability system is amazing and innovative and they can do a ton of cool things with it, some things we've rarely seen in other MMORPGs before.  :)
    Things like where you press a button and the ability happens?  Amazing.
  • TorvalTorval Member LegendaryPosts: 19,871
    DMKano said:
    If you're a backer, it might be worth your time to do a little digging on the CU forums.  Looks like Mark Jacobs is starting to lose his shit about people discussing the delays.  He basically says, either drop it, or GTFO of the forums.  You guys think that's a good sign?  Sounds like some SotA panic mode stuff to me.

    Delays are extremely frustrating for game studios - most people in his shoes would have lost their shit already.

    Game development is a HARSH business, it's brutal and completely unforgiving - you have a fanbase that is screaming "now now now now" and if it's not completely awesome will be flushing your game down the toilet and will scream "this sucks" a second later.

    You can go from being "I love these devs, they listen" to "these guys are completely clueless - can't wait to see them all fired" - in less than 1 hour from the SAME playerbase.

    Not awesome?

    I am surprised that MJ has been taken his time for this long to address the forums directly - because there is no winning for him - the outcome will always be a shitstorm in the end, because inevitably someone gets upset and starts shitting down the devs throat at every turn they see.

    Now having said all that - open development is super crappy for the devs in terms of being open with deadlines - especially when there are lots of delays.

    It kills the hype and player interest which for an unlaunched game can be absolutely lethal.

    The only way to keep open dev successful is to give constant "tangible positive progress" to the playerbase - and IMO you have to have a playable game, so that way players see first hand constant features/content being added which will keep them interested and keep them spreading the word.

    The problem is iteration times have to be crazy fast - like every couple of weeks or less if possible.

    I'm not sure if you read this article with Red Thomas and Eric Peterson of Descendent Studios - http://www.mmorpg.com/columns/descent-underground-devs-beware-1000012217.

    He touches on how Early Access was a mistake for them. The demand for constant updates and the PR hits taken for not providing them or missing deadlines was more detrimental to their development process than it was beneficial. They have since found a pub, pulled EA from Steam, and are on track to actually focus working on finishing the game.

    One huge point that stuck out to me in that article is the huge cost and overhead required for EA compared to keeping game development closed or limited to their crowd funders (as is the case here). It just takes up so much time and money and is a huge time void that smaller studios aren't equipped to handle well.

    It seems apparent from the outside that there is a huge amount of extra effort required for EA and have wondered what the payout would need to be to make worthwhile. I guess some studios are finding that out. I'm glad these guys got it and opted out the PR wine and dine dance that EA has become.

    For a single / multiplayer title it's easier to do. With an MMO it's virtually impossible once that box is open. And maybe for MMOs it's a better fit, but I still have my doubts about it. I guess you choose the best option(s) you can at the time and go with it. Every approach has its strengths and disadvantages.
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  • CrazKanukCrazKanuk Member EpicPosts: 6,130
    Torval said:
    DMKano said:
    If you're a backer, it might be worth your time to do a little digging on the CU forums.  Looks like Mark Jacobs is starting to lose his shit about people discussing the delays.  He basically says, either drop it, or GTFO of the forums.  You guys think that's a good sign?  Sounds like some SotA panic mode stuff to me.

    Delays are extremely frustrating for game studios - most people in his shoes would have lost their shit already.

    Game development is a HARSH business, it's brutal and completely unforgiving - you have a fanbase that is screaming "now now now now" and if it's not completely awesome will be flushing your game down the toilet and will scream "this sucks" a second later.

    You can go from being "I love these devs, they listen" to "these guys are completely clueless - can't wait to see them all fired" - in less than 1 hour from the SAME playerbase.

    Not awesome?

    I am surprised that MJ has been taken his time for this long to address the forums directly - because there is no winning for him - the outcome will always be a shitstorm in the end, because inevitably someone gets upset and starts shitting down the devs throat at every turn they see.

    Now having said all that - open development is super crappy for the devs in terms of being open with deadlines - especially when there are lots of delays.

    It kills the hype and player interest which for an unlaunched game can be absolutely lethal.

    The only way to keep open dev successful is to give constant "tangible positive progress" to the playerbase - and IMO you have to have a playable game, so that way players see first hand constant features/content being added which will keep them interested and keep them spreading the word.

    The problem is iteration times have to be crazy fast - like every couple of weeks or less if possible.

    I'm not sure if you read this article with Red Thomas and Eric Peterson of Descendent Studios - http://www.mmorpg.com/columns/descent-underground-devs-beware-1000012217.

    He touches on how Early Access was a mistake for them. The demand for constant updates and the PR hits taken for not providing them or missing deadlines was more detrimental to their development process than it was beneficial. They have since found a pub, pulled EA from Steam, and are on track to actually focus working on finishing the game.

    One huge point that stuck out to me in that article is the huge cost and overhead required for EA compared to keeping game development closed or limited to their crowd funders (as is the case here). It just takes up so much time and money and is a huge time void that smaller studios aren't equipped to handle well.

    It seems apparent from the outside that there is a huge amount of extra effort required for EA and have wondered what the payout would need to be to make worthwhile. I guess some studios are finding that out. I'm glad these guys got it and opted out the PR wine and dine dance that EA has become.

    For a single / multiplayer title it's easier to do. With an MMO it's virtually impossible once that box is open. And maybe for MMOs it's a better fit, but I still have my doubts about it. I guess you choose the best option(s) you can at the time and go with it. Every approach has its strengths and disadvantages.

    Don't forget the hype hit games take. After a game has been in EA for 5 years, it's difficult to get pumped for a release :) Take a look at Ark. 

    You either accept that and live in EA (like Ark) or you wait. I don't know that there is middle ground. 
    Torval

    Crazkanuk

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  • MadFrenchieMadFrenchie Member LegendaryPosts: 8,483
    edited November 2017
    It's the price of doing crowdfunding.

    As others have mentioned, at least CSE hasn't minced words with refunds.  That buys credibility.  Sprinkle in that CSE is allowing backers to be involved with the product more than any other crowdfunded endeavor (what with the dedicated backers being able to assist in full-on creation of gameplay systems), slather on a complete lack of ridiculously priced items/packages in the thousands of dollars and lavish conventions to build hype, and I think it's fair to say CU is not a good poster boy for crowdfunding delay angst.

    image
  • waynejr2waynejr2 Member EpicPosts: 7,768
    Just surprised to see him attempting to edit what the backers talk about on the forums.  Seems like a big departure from how they have handled things in the past.  They must truly be feeling the pressure.

    You mean controlling useless whining?
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  • SEANMCADSEANMCAD Member EpicPosts: 16,775
    waynejr2 said:
    Just surprised to see him attempting to edit what the backers talk about on the forums.  Seems like a big departure from how they have handled things in the past.  They must truly be feeling the pressure.

    You mean controlling useless whining?
    so what is the actionable outcome for you depending on the two possibilities? I know that is not asked perfectly but I am doing my best to understand the course of action one would take depending on the answers

    Please do not respond to me, even if I ask you a question, its rhetorical.

    Please do not respond to me

  • cameltosiscameltosis Member EpicPosts: 2,235
    Gavyne said:
    Building their own engine is the main cause of the delays.  It's hard enough to build your own game engine for big studios, they're trying to do it with a small team and very limited budget.  This likely also contributed to their difficulties in hiring, because they can't just hire any programmer, they have to hire the right ones capable of building a custom engine from scratch.

    Where as if you look at Ashes of Creation, another crowd funded game, they are using an existing established Unreal Engine 4.  Look at how much further ahead they are.  Hiring for them was probably a lot easier because all they had to do was to look for people experienced with Unreal Engine.

    Pantheon is using Unity engine.  Yes both have been hacked up and customized to death, but it's much easier to do that with established engines rather than building one from scratch like CU is doing.

    I've always thought it was a bad idea to want to create their own engine.  Not bad as in bad idea for the game.  But bad because given the size of their development team and budget, it just didn't seem like a good choice.
    I didn't think the engine was the main cause of delays. If my memory serves me correctly, the two biggest delays have been the ability system and recruitment. 

    On the ability system, they had built it and got it working but it wasn't up to scratch. The code itself wasn't performing as well as they wanted, but I believe they always wanted to make some tweaks to make the system more enjoyable but were unable to do so with the code structure. So, they decided to start again, but this obviously took a long time to re-do the work and also delayed other departments who couldn't do things like animations etc until abilities were complete. 

    On the recruitment front, that is a pure location issue. It's really hard to hire talented developers if you work in an area without a development background. It wouldn't have made a difference if they were using unity or unreal, they would have still struggled. 



    In terms of actually building an engine, you should think in terms of complexity vs quantity. 

    Writing a decent game engine is extremely complex and difficult. You have to have a shit load of knowledge about game worlds, programming, 4 dimensional physics along with a ton of mathematics. When creating a new engine, you're also trying to come up with solutions that nobody else in the world has ever solved - in CSE's case, how can we create an engine that supports 1000+ player battles. 

    So, when it comes to engines, the limiting factor is talent. The actual amount of code or the time it takes isn't as bad as you'd think, but having the talent and vision is. I used to work for a games company in the UK, and out of 500 employees there was only 1 developer in the company who worked on the game engine, because he was the only one with the required talent to do so. He would occasionally figure out a solution and then farm out the actual coding to a team member, but mostly it was just him. 


    This is why not many companies do it - they simply don't have the talent. the problem is that within the MMO world, none of the off-the-shelf solutions are designed for MMOs and so they all fall short. Ashes of Creation and Pantheon are going to suffer the same problems that previous MMOs have had when using off-the-shelf engines - shitty performance in multiplayer situations. It's simply unavoidable, hacking in MMO networking in Unreal or Unity will never give you the desired performance. 
    tweedledumb99KyleranYashaXjimmywolfXoph
  • tweedledumb99tweedledumb99 Member UncommonPosts: 254
    edited November 2017
    /snip
    Well said.

    My understanding of issues with the ability system and why it needed to change follows:

    Re: the ability system, they wanted a system that was flexible in the sense that it naturally 'figured things out on its own.' For example, they wanted a system that could naturally calculate that when a size 10 fiery-insanity-of-doom hits a size 2 water-hose-on-medium-high spell, that the water gets vaporized and that maybe the fire still sticks around. With the original system they had, they had to manually tell the system that the fire 'wins' in that situation - which isn't such a big problem on its own, except when there's multiple sizes of spells, multiple types of spells, and a ton of possible combinations, then there's a lot of manual telling that needs to happen, and that takes tons of programmer time.

    To put it another way (definitely simplified, possibly not entirely accurate) - you either have a really solid set of rules that's beautifully fleshed out so the engine knows how everything interacts OR you have a lighter set of rules but have to hand-write every possible interaction based on all the possible actions the players have for their character.

    So, that's a general overview (above).

    The history is that, at first, they tried using the manual/hand-crafted interactions with the light set of rules, and built a system that had a solid foundation of a small handful of those. They reached a point where expanding on that light foundation got more complicated and ate up more time, and I'm assuming they realized they'd have to significantly cut the scope of the combat they originally promised if they kept trying to go in this direction.

    So they decided to scrap the hand-fiddly/manual/light-rule-set old system, and made a system with many, fleshed-out, flexible rules so the system had every rule it needed to automatically decide the correct outcome of every interaction (i.e. 'what happens on screen when two characters interact makes sense'). That took a heck-ton of time, more than they wanted. And now they've got the rules they want (I think) and they need to keep plugging in the actions/abilities now that the more-functional rule set is there. They've done a lot of that plugging in already.

    ---

    About the engine, again, well said.

    Their options were to severely limit the number of players on screen, the number of player interactions happening at one time, the constructability/destructability/number of buildings, and the draw distance in order to use an existing engine (and then they probably could get higher-poly models or higher-res textures - though probably no better lighting) --- OR --- go the route they went, which is cook up their own engine. They did their own engine (still doing it as far as I can tell) that seems to have a damn strong chance at hosting 500 player battles with building destruction, siege weapons operating, spell effects going, physics projectiles, high fps, low/no lag or desync all at the same time.
    KyleranYashaXfrancis_baud
  • FlyinDutchman87FlyinDutchman87 Member UncommonPosts: 327
    User to follow this game every day, then once a week, and now about once a month. I've thought that beta was going to come out in a couple months for the last two years.

    Now.... I don't any more, and I'm not even sure I care.... The CF beta is coming along pretty well. 
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