Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

jmpveg22
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Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

Postby jmpveg22 » Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:26

It is April 2014.... and you are Eugen systems. You just released Red Dragon. Aside from the obvious response of : "Not starting AOA until all aspects of RD were complete" How would you handle the release and management of RD differently?

How would you gather information? How would you communicate with the community? How would you fix bugs? How would you do anything?

The purpose of this is not to lambast Eugen Systems to the point of ineptitude... i think that has been done already, many times ( honestly for both good and bad reasons). The purpose of this is to possibly provide those at Eugen a way of learning how to better handle similar situations in the future.

So no insults, flaming, trolling, sniping, snarkyness, sarcasm, etc etc etc etc etc

Simply post what you would have done differently or state how you think what others have said could be problematic in a respectable way (also give an example of how it could be a flawed concept)... then retire for the day/night. Come back the next day/night calm and collected, then repeat the process if need be.
Last edited by jmpveg22 on Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:27, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

Postby jmpveg22 » Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:26

For me:
1) Weekly communication updates on what is being worked on. Even if it only 2-3 sentences.... those 2-3 sentences go a long way in maintaining trust and goodwill on both ends. If an obvious problem exists... at least acknowledge you know of its existence. Ducking and hiding from things only detracts from your credibility from a developer standpoint.
If RD was a car with a fault, and i go back to the dealer and tell them there is a fault... only to see the dealer hide behind the counter and pretend i wasn't there, i would be pissed and think "incompetence" immediately.

2) Following my own stipulated Rules and stay consistent. Easiest example is "OOTF". the game is set by Eugen's own site to be between 1980-1991, then Eugen said we will extend to 1995 for select nations to fill gaps, then appeared units and weapons from the late 90's and even 2000s.

3) Updating/reforming the Marshall system. I really think this is the core of the failure. I think part of the problem was the lack of randomness to the Marshal system. You need technical and research experts yes... but when you fill in the gaps from that with "fans, liked personalities, etc" you are bound to create a non-productive dynamic... even one where the dev is likely to ignore the experts and researchers (simply because the other group is more appealing to listen to).
Thus the problem of favoritism is born. So to counteract this i think that you should've done 50% Experts and researchers... 50% random selection. To me (and others) it seems obvious that the lack of randomness in your Marshall pool has yielded some unfavorable conditions

4) As a French developer its totally cool you may or may not have a french bias... but don't hide form it and try and defend it when obvious holes to the logic apply. OWN IT. American developers all the time are guilty of producing games with "Super M1A1s" that are essentially impervious from destruction. Something to me that is unappealing and even somewhat pig-headed. But at least they often own their bias... and acknowledge it. Everybody has a favorite ________, no matter who you are. To pretend you are being "totally objective" when you are incapable of being so... just makes you look silly in the long run.
It is 100% your right as a French developer to do things "French". Just as you see American developers do things "Murican" (god i hate this... and I am American, to me it just reenforces negative stereotypes). Nobody can fault you for that. But we as the community can rightfully fault you for pretending to be otherwise... especially when the we patiently ask about the double standard. and times when logic and facts seem to go out the window.
Plus I feel, this would have eliminated 99% of the unproductive conversation on the forum alone.

5) Keep trolling by devs and mods to a minimum. Yeah i know its fun to tease and prod the community.. but when you do you are only often stoking the fire. The effect is especially exaggerated if there is a perceived fault with the game. This inevitably leads to negativity towards the dev or mod.


Hope some of those ideas help.

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Re: Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

Postby Rorschach » Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:30

jmpveg22 wrote:For me:
1) Weekly communication updates on what is being worked on. Even if it only 2-3 sentences.... those 2-3 sentences go a long way in maintaining trust and goodwill on both ends. If an obvious problem exists... at least acknowledge you know of its existence. Ducking and hiding from things only detracts from your credibility from a developer standpoint.
If RD was a car with a fault, and i go back to the dealer and tell them there is a fault... only to see the dealer hide behind the counter and pretend i wasn't there, i would be pissed and think "incompetence" immediately.

2) Following my own stipulated Rules and stay consistent. Easiest example is "OOTF". the game is set by Eugen's own site to be between 1980-1991, then Eugen said we will extend to 1995 for select nations to fill gaps, then appeared units and weapons from the late 90's and even 2000s.

3) Updating/reforming the Marshall system. I really think this is the core of the failure. I think part of the problem was the lack of randomness to the Marshal system. You need technical and research experts yes... but when you fill in the gaps from that with "fans, liked personalities, etc" you are bound to create a non-productive dynamic... even one where the dev is likely to ignore the experts and researchers (simply because the other group is more appealing to listen to).
Thus the problem of favoritism is born. So to counteract this i think that you should've done 50% Experts and researchers... 50% random selection. To me (and others) it seems obvious that the lack of randomness in your Marshall pool has yielded some unfavorable conditions

4) As a French developer its totally cool you may or may not have a french bias... but don't hide form it and try and defend it when obvious holes to the logic apply. OWN IT. American developers all the time are guilty of producing games with "Super M1A1s" that are essentially impervious from destruction. Something to me that is unappealing and even somewhat pig-headed. But at least they often own their bias... and acknowledge it. Everybody has a favorite ________, no matter who you are. To pretend you are being "totally objective" when you are incapable of being so... just makes you look silly in the long run.
It is 100% your right as a French developer to do things "French". Just as you see American developers do things "Murican" (god i hate this... and I am American, to me it just reenforces negative stereotypes). Nobody can fault you for that. But we as the community can rightfully fault you for pretending to be otherwise... especially when the we patiently ask about the double standard. and times when logic and facts seem to go out the window.
Plus I feel, this would have eliminated 99% of the unproductive conversation on the forum alone.

5) Keep trolling by devs and mods to a minimum. Yeah i know its fun to tease and prod the community.. but when you do you are only often stoking the fire. The effect is especially exaggerated if there is a perceived fault with the game. This inevitably leads to negativity towards the dev or mod.


Hope some of those ideas help.


@1, already done really, not in any sort of official capacity but Madmatt and FLX are around quite a lot to talk about stuff

@2, Eugen does follow their own rules; they do what they want. Many people don't like that, but they've been consistently dedicated to doing whatever the hell they want to do.

@3, don't know enough/care enough about the marshall system to disagree/agree

@4, No.

@5, Apart from that time they trolled the community by not releasing a DLC because the 6 Linux players wouldn't be able to play, the devs trolling is fine by me. I mean, its just baaaaahntaaar.
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Re: Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

Postby Solo » Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:31

*Forget about Naval
*Decide whether the game is nationally or coalition-ally balanced and damn stick with it
*Be more responsive and transparent on the forums
*Give more than just one or two new units for non-DLC countries
*Either stick with the timeframe or stop using OOTF as an excuse for not putting in units/weapons
*A few new maps would be nice, even if just remastered maps from previous games
*More frequent patching especially as it relates to balance and historical accuracy

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Re: Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

Postby raventhefuhrer » Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:41

Off the top of my head I can think of three things, in no particular order.

1) Naval - Just didn't work, but I give them credit for trying to push the envelope. And to be fair a lot of people asked for inclusion of naval stuff at various times when ALB was being released. It just didn't work though...I think nobody put enough thought into just how naval should function, and then didn't realize soon enough that it wasn't working out.

2) Communication - I think Eugen has lost a lot of ground on community relations and Developer-Customer communication. But basically I think there's been far too much secrecy on what's going on, what's being planned, etc. I understand community relations is hard, especially when the game isn't in a great state, but it's very important. Had the developers collaborated more closely with the community I think we'd have done better. I won't go further than this for risk of derailing the thread, but I believe a divisive and adversarial relationship between developers and the forum goers has been cultivated and a lot of that is on Eugen.

3) Patches - They really needed to commit to more frequent, and meaty patches. There were long segments (months and months) where we didn't get any patch at all. The entire Red Dragon experience has been characterized by 'Well, the game's in a bad spot, but let's wait for the next big patch...' and the next big patch is always four months away. Truthfully I'd probably rate this as the worst of the three... there was just too much time between critical fixes and balance adjustments and enormous amounts of players gave up waiting for these patches.

Too late now I guess. But hopefully lessons can be learned.

edit:

4) Consistency - There was just far too much inconsistency in units and balance decisions. 'We can't give this unit because it was a year out of time frame, but we'll give North Korea the T-90 because of gameplay considerations'...Or 'We won't make this unit because it didn't exist, but here's a Chimera for Canada'. The 'rules' for what goes into the game and what doesn't never felt like rules, they were just always excuses to justify when Eugen wanted to, or didn't want to do something.
Last edited by raventhefuhrer on Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:43, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

Postby Hollywood Myth » Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:41

I'd have looked at what they did during EE and ALB and do it again.
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Re: Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

Postby F-22 » Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:45

More maps

Not taking 4-5 months to introduce another balance patch, if modders can do it in 1, so can you.

More maps

Stop adding units and giving capabilities to nations which goes against what they actually focused on militarily IRL.

If the USSR has the best AA capabilities IRL, make damn sure they do, too many USSR planes are armed with R-77's.

If the US has the best Airforce in the world IRL, make damn sure they do, Patriots gotta go.

More maps.


Don't call an entire group of people lobbying for a nation to get their actual capabilities "fanboys"

More maps.

Do better research on the Red Dragons(especially North Korea, you guys really missed some, as you say 'flavor' units), consult the people on the forums who obviously knew what they were talking about before you sent off the ticket to the outsourcing modeling company.

And finally, more maps.

Basically, take everything you did from EE and ALB, and do it again.

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Re: Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

Postby Vulcan 607 » Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:51

Naval naval naval I have to say it should have been finished or not included at all it's just not finished what else can you say?

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Re: Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

Postby PzAz04Maus » Thu 15 Jan 2015 23:52

raventhefuhrer wrote:Off the top of my head I can think of three things, in no particular order.

1) Naval - Just didn't work, but I give them credit for trying to push the envelope. And to be fair a lot of people asked for inclusion of naval stuff at various times when ALB was being released. It just didn't work though...I think nobody put enough thought into just how naval should function, and then didn't realize soon enough that it wasn't working out.

I think they also didn't quite realize how much effort would have to be sunk to get the whole system working. Didn't the models alone soak like 5 times the amount of modeling time compared to ground units?

Another way they could've done this was scope up through DLC. Focus on the small craft, work your way up when you have the fundamentals down.

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Re: Hindsight 20/20: If you were Eugen...

Postby raventhefuhrer » Fri 16 Jan 2015 00:01

PzAz04Maus wrote:I think they also didn't quite realize how much effort would have to be sunk to get the whole system working. Didn't the models alone soak like 5 times the amount of modeling time compared to ground units?

Another way they could've done this was scope up through DLC. Focus on the small craft, work your way up when you have the fundamentals down.


Yeah, I think MM said once that the amount of resources/time/effort they put into one ship was the same as went into five ground units. So think of the boats in game, multiply it by five, imagine those units being distributed to existing nation's ground forces. Just think of how glorious the game would've been... and again, I respect Eugen for trying to push the envelope again...it's just a shame it didn't work out.

And yeah I think small rivercraft could've been an interesting addition to the game. Maybe even infantry in water transports for insertion along coasts or up rivers. Maybe even naval aviation called in from separate, oversea air corridors. That could've been a lot of fun, potentially. But I've been arguing for this since closed beta, where they should section the 'blue water' vessels off into the naval-only maps and allow only 'brown water' assets in mixed maps. Eugen never listened.
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