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April 5th, 2021, 08:26
Rolling the dice only works for true role players, the majority are min-max players of sorts and will reload after failing a check. Even if the failed check would lead to interesting and fun situations (which they dont know, trust the dev to make each path cool and worthwhile I guess).
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April 5th, 2021, 10:40
Originally Posted by GabrielMP_19 View Post
It will only be bad if they're being dumb about it. Data is great, it's how you use it that's important. For instance, if they want a particular choice to be hard and 90% of people pick one of the options, then they missed something. They can use the data to give more interesting options for the players, for example.
I think we all agree on that point, the data part in itself has its uses and is fine, mostly.

But the "fickled crowd" problem is how much time and effort Larian is taking to fine-tune something in the hope it will please absolutely everyone, from the data but also from all the noise in their forums, instead of assuming their identity and having a clear vision of what they want. They have a fine record after all, and BG3 is great as it is.

Not only those changes can only tend towards a "neutral" result, which isn't necessarily good quality. But it's also a risk for the project itself. From the reactions above, it's interesting to note that people don't like to be reminded of that and prefer to think Larian is cool because they linger as they please. Another game does that, something to do about stars

It's just how they show, I like to hope they're not fools and won't fall into that trap.
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April 5th, 2021, 16:13
Originally Posted by GabrielMP_19 View Post
It will only be bad if they're being dumb about it. Data is great, it's how you use it that's important. For instance, if they want a particular choice to be hard and 90% of people pick one of the options, then they missed something. They can use the data to give more interesting options for the players, for example.
I actually like this a lot about the games Sunless Sea and Sunless Sky which are text heavy adventure rpgs that use a lot of non-combat stat checks. You get to see what stat test will be made beforehand and see your general chance of success (The dice is colored red, orange, yellow or green) and you can see your exact chance if you like (by using a tool tip on the dice) and there is always a cautious choice where you can avoid taking a test. This lets you know if a test is supposed to be hard for your character build or not. I find that makes the repurcussions less frustrating if you fail (these are random dice checks).
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April 5th, 2021, 16:21
Originally Posted by Redglyph View Post
I think we all agree on that point, the data part in itself has its uses and is fine, mostly.

But the "fickled crowd" problem is how much time and effort Larian is taking to fine-tune something in the hope it will please absolutely everyone, from the data but also from all the noise in their forums, instead of assuming their identity and having a clear vision of what they want. They have a fine record after all, and BG3 is great as it is.

Not only those changes can only tend towards a "neutral" result, which isn't necessarily good quality. But it's also a risk for the project itself. From the reactions above, it's interesting to note that people don't like to be reminded of that and prefer to think Larian is cool because they linger as they please. Another game does that, something to do about stars

It's just how they show, I like to hope they're not fools and won't fall into that trap.
This is a risk for all crowd funded/early access projects. I haven't paid attention enough about this project to have an opinion on Larian's decisions in general. I did pay attention when Pillars of Eternity and Might and Magic X were being developed and spent some time on the forums there and believe me there were plenty of forum posters who were full of rage about those projects as well, because they did not like aspects of those game's development decisions. And there was a poster a few years back who got banned from RPGWatch because of his anger filled rants (which included abusive treatment of other forum members who disagreed with him) about how Darkest Dungeon changed during Early access. Larian has done this Early Access thing 3 times now, so let's hope they know when its best to stick to their guns.
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April 5th, 2021, 16:39
I still think they are exposing themselves unnecesarily, and the EA was a huge mistake with BG3, simply because how media and social dynamics have developed in the past decade. It's always the negative opinions that are strongest and loudest, and that creates an illusion of the game being bad while probably a very high percent of the players are happily waiting for the game to release, and they have no need to comment on anything.

The backlash might be really hard to deal with, because the negativity amongst those vocal, angry nobodies does radiate to others and creates this false perception of things being wrong when there is a good chance that they aren't. And all of this nitpicky arguments like Jump being too powerful/too weak, the UI being too bulky/minimalist, having 10 hairstyles for female tiefling is too much/too little, dice RNG playing too big a role, elemental surfaces play too much/too little of a role, parties should be 6 characters… seems to me like the personal taste of a few people that feel the game needs to be custom tailored to their own explicit needs, and if it doesn't get changed, then it's the end of the world, because then the game will be completely and utterly unplayable, an aberration to forever hate Larian for, and curse them for the ages to come.

I don't remember anyone complaining about either of those things, or similarly nitpicky aspects of Baldur's Gate 1 or 2 as they became the masterpieces of RPG that most fans consider them to be. People just need to stop being so goddamn self entitled and play whatever they are delivered, and be thankful that we will even have a Baldur's Gate 3, because the world of RPG gaming will be so much better for it, especially if it becomes a massive success and more games like it begin to be developed.

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April 5th, 2021, 17:18
Several developers said they liked the EA cycle nowadays to "work hand in hand" with the fans, so to speak. I suppose the art resides in filtering the feedback, it can't be easy. For example, we see those huge threads on "party of 4" vs "party of 6" (49 pages), or "turned-based" vs "real-time with pause" (87 pages!)… A treasure of information, but I wouldn't like to be in the shoes of whoever has to read them
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April 5th, 2021, 17:25
Game development shouldn't be a democracy IMO. While I have enjoyed EA and Beta games at times I would still prefer games get released when ready. Also no real hype or marketing till close to release date.
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April 5th, 2021, 17:29
Personally I think the fifth edition rules are far too confusing and complex. Perhaps they'll have a tool that we can impose the second or third set of rules within the game? One can dream, I suppose. Sometimes simpler is better, when you add so much stuff the whole winds up diluted.
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April 5th, 2021, 18:13
I don't think that Game development should be democracy either, and believe early access can be a two edged swords. In Might and Magic X the playtesters were able to convince the developers to increase movement speed and to add character portraits for conditions, which were initially not planned due to budget constraints, and I am really of the opinion that those were both very positive changes to that game. I think what's really important is the developer's judgement. While the community can point out things the developer may have missed which could improve a game, the developer can't let themselves get steamrolled by a few naysaysers. Also, the risk does exist that a group of customers can bomb the release with negative reviews.
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April 5th, 2021, 19:02
Originally Posted by Redglyph View Post
Several developers said they liked the EA cycle nowadays to "work hand in hand" with the fans, so to speak.
I'm gonna need a list of those seven developers so I can boycott them please. As I despise the whole concept of Early Access and my opinion will never change.
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Last edited by Couchpotato; April 5th, 2021 at 19:21.
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April 5th, 2021, 19:27
Originally Posted by wolfgrimdark View Post
Game development shouldn't be a democracy IMO. While I have enjoyed EA and Beta games at times I would still prefer games get released when ready. Also no real hype or marketing till close to release date.
I think this goes hand in hand with the debate whether games are art or not.

- devs listen to what people *think* they want (in the end trying to cram too much into one game)
- devs use statistics to decide what people want (lootboxes and mobile first)
- or games can be art where devs have the full creative freedom

The real progress happens only in the last one.
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April 5th, 2021, 19:36
It's like food. Some people stick to their principles and make an art out of it, others ask people to build their own burgers and deliver them on a platter to get fast money from the greatest possible audience.

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April 5th, 2021, 22:00
EA is a strange notion for consumer products, I'm still wrapping my mind around it.

But in another scope, I've seen the interests of Agile development, in which you proceed by steps and allow for some controlled changes during the development, because it's not always possible for the client or the developer to anticipate every problem or opportunity.

Indie games are the most risky developments, they're bringing us novelties that huge budget games will be reluctant to introduce (that may be akin to what Ripper and Ilm said about freedom / art). So it makes sense for them to be somewhat cautious and see our reaction before it's too late(*). Maybe we can see EA as a similar tool to allow for some corrections?

See how Solasta made adjustments, for example the lighting. IMO that's a good example of how to do it, they kept their development under control but avoided to release a feature that would have been heavily criticized (because non-RAW).

(*) I'm talking about small opportunities, not change everything; I still believe they should stick to their main vision
Last edited by Redglyph; April 5th, 2021 at 22:13. Reason: (*) clarification
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April 5th, 2021, 22:14
I think most indies that do EA simply need the cash. They can flog alpha, beta, and EA access in different tiers. I think it's baloney, but, at the same time, if some people are willing to pay for it, and that's what keeps the lights on at the studio, good luck to them.

Personally, if I had to develop a game in EA, where the community is like a noisy townhall, that would be a penance for me. If I had my way, I would use my experience of communities like this one, to invite those I know are cool to participate in a private closed beta, and give them some nice perks for their trouble.
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April 5th, 2021, 22:24
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
I'm gonna need a list of those seven developers so I can boycott them please. As I despise the whole concept of Early Access and my opinion will never change.
Errrrr, Couch… I think Redglyph wrote "several", not "seven"… If there were only seven devs, it would be a lot easier for us to ignore them all, but since he wrote "several developers" then things get more complicated
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April 5th, 2021, 22:41
Originally Posted by Ripper View Post
Personally, if I had to develop a game in EA, where the community is like a noisy townhall, that would be a penance for me. If I had my way, I would use my experience of communities like this one, to invite those I know are cool to participate in a private closed beta, and give them some nice perks for their trouble.
That's how I'd do it too, I really don't know how they can handle it for so long. But apparently some of them like that as early feedback. As you said, most of indie devs mostly need the financial support, that remains the primary objective of course.

@Couchpotato yeah, sorry, several e.g. Larian, and I can retrieve others who said that, if that's of any interest. What aspects of EA do you despise? TBH I'm not 100% comfortable with everything, even if I see the advantages.
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April 5th, 2021, 23:02
I do wonder how many of them are really pleased about it, and how many just know EA is a painful chore that has to be done, to get some revenue in.
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April 6th, 2021, 00:00
Originally Posted by Redglyph View Post
@Couchpotato yeah, sorry, several e.g. Larian, and I can retrieve others who said that, if that's of any interest. What aspects of EA do you despise? TBH I'm not 100% comfortable with everything, even if I see the advantages.
Long wait till the game is in a full playable state and spoilers. Don't get me started on how almost every news-bit about a games launch is for Early Access. I could go on.

It's like that old idiom, "too much of a good thing".

Link - https://idioms.thefreedictionary.com…f+a+good+thing
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Last edited by Couchpotato; April 6th, 2021 at 00:19. Reason: Added Link
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April 6th, 2021, 01:08
Originally Posted by Ripper View Post
I think most indies that do EA simply need the cash. They can flog alpha, beta, and EA access in different tiers. I think it's baloney, but, at the same time, if some people are willing to pay for it, and that's what keeps the lights on at the studio, good luck to them.

Personally, if I had to develop a game in EA, where the community is like a noisy townhall, that would be a penance for me. If I had my way, I would use my experience of communities like this one, to invite those I know are cool to participate in a private closed beta, and give them some nice perks for their trouble.
That's what used to happen and the reward was a free copy of the final game. I beta tested a lot of games a few years ago and then reviewed the final iteration both here and previously for the Dot. All I got was a free game, but that was far better than now having to PAY to be a beta tester!!
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April 6th, 2021, 01:45
Yeah, I reckon loads of them would love to do it that way. But, I'm convinced that almost all crowdfunders these days set their goal at a figure they think is realistic to get, but way short of what's actually needed. Then they hope to get a new wave of funding from EA, or the game's up.
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