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@DEVs: Features Which Are Effectively Off The Table

Discussion in 'Ask the Team' started by 0strum, Jul 7, 2017.


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  1. 0strum 0strum Arkhona Vanguard

    Dear developer team,

    time has gone by since @Oveur joined the project and the "great crushing of dreams" happened. EC was reevaluated and put on a different track, new features were announced to make the new vision for the game appear as appealing as possible and unsatisfied founders were offered a refund. This thread is not about the time before, but about the time since EC's change of course.

    Many features were announced by the developer team and a fair number of others were confirmed implicitly and explicitly during the weekly twitch shows. Now, we all know about the current state of the game, the queues speak for themselves. We also all know that a quite large number of these features have yet to be implemented or even shown in their most rudimentary stage of development.

    So, in the interest of transparency I am inviting all developers to chime in here and to be open about features - which were announced and/or confirmed AFTER this game's "rebirth" under new management - features which are now no longer on the table. I would be grateful if you developers would voluntarily mention some (post-Miguel) features which are no longer part of this game's intended future and whether it is due to changes in development, technology or due to a lack of resources.

    Think of this request as an opportunity for those on the team with responsibility to clean the slate on what players can and can not expect in terms of features that will be making their way into this game in the next 18 months. (I think looking beyond the end of 2018 is pointless)

    So, dear developers, I encourage you just this once. Don't tell us what we want to hear. Tell us what we DON'T want to hear about previously announced or confirmed features, which are dead.

    @KatieFleming @Oveur @NoahWard @jbregg @MichaelChan


    Dear players, this thread is NOT for us to respond to, I want to hear the developers on this issue. I WILL ask moderators to conduct merciless purges in this thread if it derails, so no salt please.
    Kralgor, Cath, kotovasy and 12 others like this.
  2. Anvil The-Forge-Dragon Arkhona Vanguard

    You forgot michael Chan. I can't link things because I'm on mobile.
  3. 0strum 0strum Arkhona Vanguard

    Got it.
  4. Kharn KharnVarus Eternal Battles Moderator

    Michael Chan no longer works on EC I'm pretty sure.
  5. From Discord today (7/11/17): IMG_3442.PNG
    Cath, Brother_Nemiel, Never and 3 others like this.
  6. Nathan Richardsson Oveur Senior Producer

    Howdy all,

    Here’s my perspective. Back when I arrived, I wouldn’t call it a rebirth. Great purge would be more correct. It was painful and happened a couple of times before we disclosed where we’d be heading.

    Besides a few technologies failing the original vision when we were revisiting the scope back then, there were things we had to change pretty drastically for this to become a reality at all.

    The drastic changes, were because of two hard goals:

    1. Massive battles in a persistent world.
    That’s a high number of players in a match, a single world where you’re a unique player, with character and visual customization that is persistent.

    2. A technical runway which was extendable and allowed us to eventually get close to the original vision.
    I call it a hub and spoke, and it’s commonly used today. Other approaches would involve sharding, phasing and instancing within those shards. A shard is your common “MMO” server.

    What fell under the bus during development were the harsh realities of game development people don’t see. It’s why most game developers stay miles away from even announcing a title before it’s almost done these days, and if it’s announced, it includes no detail. Because they know a lot of things will be moved out or cut. You get a nice video and a title.

    We went the exact opposite way, and we decided we didn’t want to reverse that course. Besides. We believe in getting the game into the hands of you, the player, as soon as possible, to get feedback and try to respond to it.

    One of those was changing to an engine that could even remotely achieve those goals. Remember, back then we were stuck at 8 vs 8 and needed nuclear fueled machines to run it? Switching to UE4 was about being ever able to ship, not “hey let’s try out this stuff”.

    Assets transfer over. Game systems were rewritten. We achieved in 3 months what had taken 2 years. It’s not a fair comparison as we were more people but it’s what happened. And in 3 months it was 32 players out of the box. After all, it’s was a purpose built shooter engine.

    Back to the original question.

    What has been cut forever? Nothing.

    What can we do today compared to the full production team? I'd say 10%.

    What does that mean? It means some things are now very far out, instead of just “later.” For all intents and purposes as a customer, you can consider it cut. It’s that far away.

    Our production pipeline isn’t parallel any more. We retool it for any given time, and what we decide to take on. Right now, we focus on systems. Systems allow the creation of systemic content which is re-usable. It’s often tools which you give into the hands of players, so the players are more valuable to each other.

    Systems allow us to create far more content, faster than making one map.

    Game modes is a system.

    Melee is a system.

    Objectives (personal goals), is a system. It’s also in my mind the pre-requisites for the game modes, and campaigns evolving.

    Vehicle Customization is a system. It contains a lot of content (visuals) but also as a system, it is a pre-requisite for any form of more vehicular game modes (especially vehicle only modes). To create vehicle variations and balance them in any meaningful way, this system is needed.

    This is what we’re working on.

    As an example of systems we can take on after we’re done with the above, you can, like me, dream about the following:

    Slates is a system. If you imagine in a simplified way, you select three slates of the ones you’ve gathered into a match. Three extra “powers.” Then we can make Squad leader slates. And there is more. They are a pre-requisite for Warlords, which is a pre-requisite for even more interesting game modes. They are a pre-requisites for allowing you to bring more heroes and veteran spawns into the same match. But you have to choose.

    So you probably see by now where I’m going with this. We’re rigged for systems right now.

    As an example, re-rigging our production line to deliver Terminators, we would throw out engineers, and get animators and such on the team. Then we’d take 3+ months getting them finished and balanced. Not a lot of bang for the bucks there.

    On the other hand, rigged for systems, we can deliver the systems above, step by step. I might not have been clear enough why we’re doing vehicles and objectives, but as you see, they are enabling us to improve current systems and expanding new ones – like game modes.

    Another example is maps. Re-rigging for maps is the same as Terminators. A new map through the entire process is months by multiple people. Going dark for some months to deliver one new map doesn’t sound very interesting.

    But rigged for systems. Imagine, what if we ... created different types of “capture points” or such activities as part of a game mode for different classes on current maps. As in new point? Or added more destructible stuff? These are all systems.

    That means, to answer your question more plainly from your viewpoint as a customer, “what is cut?”

    Anything that isn’t systems. The rest is currently so far out it’s not worth talking about.

    Who is to blame? Oh, I can name a lot of contributing factors along the way, I find mainly me. In the end, I’m responsible.

    Working on systems was barely a choice for me because it was so obvious, a necessity as we need engineers to fix fundamental issues as well and couldn't rig for maps or Terminators. But there was more. Systems was also how we turned EVE around from 30,000 subscribers to 500,000. Noah and I come from there.

    I have a lot of hope; I came here only because of my love for 40K, I’ve spent 2 and a half years on this because I believe and I can imagine what we can do over time. Because it’s happened before and seen it with my own eyes.

    Just my 2 isk. And I encourage other devs to chip in as well, but don't expect them to. Me voicing this opinion is not done lightly. Then again, when have I sat on my opinion, to a fault.

    I simply hope you see what I see. Potential. Not death.

    Data8671, omarx, Kralgor and 70 others like this.
  7. @Oveur, THIS is stuff I've been waiting to see. This post needs to be Steam News. It needs its own Announcement. Its a State of the Crusade, and it explains the path forward far more clearly than much I've seen.
  8. Aven Aven Subordinate

    Hey @Oveur , thanks for taking the time to write here, it's really appreciated.
    omarx, Njord-Halfhand, cmonty and 6 others like this.
  9. Well, at least he let us down gently, I guess.
    Xeltan, AddyRedrum, Aidwell and 3 others like this.
  10. -WCA-Vola Talron Moderator

    @Oveur this is the single best thing that could've happened on the forums. Thank you for telling us what is happening! I don't see this as a bad thing by any means. If anything it means that the team is trying to make the game succeed with what they have. Guys this is good and now that it is out there we can move forward and maybe help them.
    omarx, cmonty, Faeruin and 5 others like this.
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