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IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of March, 2014

 
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IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of Mar... - 3/14/2014 2:10:05 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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Matrix Games World in Flames

State of the Game and Future Plans as of March, 2014


First, thank you for your interest in World in Flames and taking the time to read through this. The goal of this post is to give you an update on where we are.

As you are aware World in Flames released in November, 2013 after many years of development. In terms of computer wargames, it is the single most complex computer wargame we have ever released and it has the largest code base, which is saying something. We’ve been working on World in Flames for most of the history of Matrix Games, together with Steve Hokanson, the developer of World in Flames for the computer and one of the most dedicated individuals I’ve ever met. Steve also overcame great hardships during
development to bring the game to release, he and the beta testers deserve full credit for all they have done and it is a privilege to be able to work with them.

The decision to release the game in the first place had to be made months before the release as we had decided that we really wanted to get behind this truly enormous project and give the WIF audience a unique experience. So the decision to add the physical hardbound volumes and maps was taken. These represented the largest and most expensive physical package, by far, that we had ever done for a game. You have told us that these books and map are of the highest quality and this did not come cheaply. We felt that offering World in Flames in this kind of deluxe package was the right move for the World in Flames community and based on the reception, we know that you largely agreed. However, later we added a download only option, especially for the board games audience, as in the main they already owned much of the material, but we do still feel the physical Collector’s Edition is the best way to experience World in Flames.

From the outset we announced that the game did not yet have an AI but we were optimistic about the quality of the solitaire game and felt that it was pretty solid. Due to the nature of the WIF audience and the time it has taken to get to this point we decided to proceed. Simply put you had already waited far too long.

As you know testing a game of this complexity is a thankless job, but our testers did a great job over many years, yet despite that it can often be that even the most rigorous of testing does not pick everything up. The sheer enormity of this game and the number of games played has not unexpectedly revealed a number of fixes that do need attention and Steve is burning the Midnight oil to attend to these. A further and to some degree unexpected phenomena of this game is that individuals approach this game with their own particular playstyle and their own scenario and optional rule preferences. This unique influence has revealed a number of special cases which we have been dealing with.

It is particularly concerning for us that whilst many customers are playing and enjoying World in Flames, some are running into problems and I am confident that you know us well enough to understand that we will not walk away from these difficulties. We are working tirelessly with Steve to resolve these.

What I have been impressed with is the support and help from our customers and testers. This together with the efforts primarily by Steve and our test teams means that we have been steadily gaining ground and many issues which have been addressed are now working well. We are without doubt sorry that there have been a number of issues. Part of the problem has been trying to remain true to the board game experience and with hindsight the complexity of this game has been far greater than anyone anticipated. However we are confident that with our continuing team effort and some ongoing dedication and diligence, the game will continue to improve.

We will continue updating World in Flames until the game meets our customers’ expectations without work-arounds or replays, whether solitaire or via NetPlay.

Over the course of this last week, we’ve embarked on a full review of World in Flames from bottom to top and so that we can keep you up to date Steve will be posting regular updates regarding our development priorities as we move forwards so keep the feedback coming in.

We will also be testing each build through a public and private beta process before any new build goes “official”. Public participation in the beta process is optional, but of course welcome.

We will continue to make critical bugs a top priority regardless of where they exist and this will mean a change of approach where we focus on getting each functional area to completion before moving to the next one.

To help achieve this we will include the test team in that focus by setting more specific testing priorities and this should help thouroughly validate each build before it goes official.

Steve’s immediate priorities are a few Critical bugs that will be relatively quick to resolve, before looking at some issues relating to Supply, Production Planning and Naval movement/combat

Steve will also meet with our Technical Director next week for a review of the remaining Net Play issues as this remains high on our list of priorities and we will be giving you some feedback on that point after they have met. We hope that this update has been helpful and demonstrates our resolve in working through these current issues in order that we can improve the game play experience for everyone.


< Message edited by Erik Rutins -- 3/14/2014 3:10:38 PM >


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Post #: 1
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/15/2014 3:36:58 PM   
majordefeat

 

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You have removed your previous post (it seems?) from November, which concerned as I remember it Netplay playability issues.
You have provided a link on the Product webpage to this new post, and this new post makes bare reference to Netplay playability issues.

Since your link from the product page is titled "IMPORTANT: For news on the state of Multiplayer at release and World in Flames, please read this Forum post.", it would seem of value to be quite clear to the potential customer who is considering making a purchase of WiF for its multiplayer feature, that multiplayer is essentially in beta, playable to a very limited degree, but essentially in need of many fixes.

If you do purchase WiF and have no intention of purchasing the paper copy, maps, etc, you should know that you are purchasing a very expensive beta. Solo play is a nice sandbox and would seem to throw up only minor issues if any. Hot seat I haven't tried but presume this would be a similar situation to solo play, as the only real distinction is that you are switching between humans at the same console?

Multiplayer on the other hand. Well, in my opinion you will need a very patient friend, a skype connection and/or phone line connection in order that you can talk to your opponent so you can recover from frequent crashes, and familiarise yourself with how the multiplayer forum launches new games and recovers saved game files.

I am not expert enough to know the deviations from actual WiF and how it plays out in Netplay in terms of execution of the rules of play etc. But do not expect it to be playable without errors that effect the quality of your gameplay in general terms. Save any games that are in play as often as you can. It is not an inexpensive computer game. It's really stupidly expensive when you consider that there is no difference between the price with and without accompany paper/cardboard/maps etc. So decide before you buy whether you are buying the game because of its advertised multiplay feature, and know in advance that multiplay has many issues that the generalist player is likely to encounter in the course of even basic play.

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/16/2014 7:11:55 AM   
paulderynck


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quote:

ORIGINAL: majordefeat
Solo play is a nice sandbox and would seem to throw up only minor issues if any. Hot seat I haven't tried but presume this would be a similar situation to solo play, as the only real distinction is that you are switching between humans at the same console?

Responding because of the question mark at the end of that sentence.

Yes, but Hot Seat also hides the information that is hidden in NetPlay - like US Entry chit values. This is done with the expectation that the correct player for the side "in control" at the moment is the one in the hot seat.

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/17/2014 2:09:01 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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Sorry, I thought it was pretty clear. For new customers - NetPlay is not fully working yet, we will update this post when it is.

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Post #: 4
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/19/2014 4:43:28 PM   
mjjcpa

 

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Will netplay support more than 2 players?

This game is best with four imo. Six is too many. I used to play with 3. One Axis, 2 Ally.

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/19/2014 7:16:34 PM   
micheljq


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mjjcpa

Will netplay support more than 2 players?

This game is best with four imo. Six is too many. I used to play with 3. One Axis, 2 Ally.


Five is good for the board game. One german, one Italy/Japan, one russian, one Commonwealth, one USA.

Michel.

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Post #: 6
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/24/2014 12:25:07 AM   
Zartacla

 

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A few worn platitudes, some vague promises, and... nothing. Another week goes by with no patches, no fixes, no progress and almost no communication.

You want an honest state of the game? Here it is.

Supply - BROKEN Although most supply bugs can be gotten past by saving and reloading the game, this has to be done multiple times per turn if you want to both move and attack with your army in some places on the map. Since the game has to be completely exited and restarted every 3rd reload or so, this very quickly becomes tedious. Supply recalculations, while faster, are still causing lag times of up to 10 seconds per move in parts of Russia.

ASW - BROKEN Barely discussed, probably because supply is the major focus right now, the Battle of the Atlantic is broken. Sink every CW convoy and somehow all the resources still reach the CW! It's like magic (pun intended).

Mid to late game - BROKEN Multiple lock ups that can't be worked around, or can only sporadically be worked around, or take multiple (sometimes as many as 10) reloads to fix, making it all but impossible to finish a game. A beta fix for that was promised for two days ago, but not only was it not distributed, there was no communication about it at all.

Net play - BROKEN Pretty much doesn't work at all. Sure, we were notified on release day that it wasn't really ready yet, but the implication was that it would be fixed soon. The truth was that the rest of the code was still in such bad shape that net play would hardly be touched for at least half a year.

And these are just the critical issues, the game stopping, game breaking bugs that exist FIVE MONTHS after release.

I've been patient (admittedly with gritted teeth) and I've been helpful. I would venture to guess that outside of the beta testers, nobody has uploaded more save files to the tech support forum or reported more bugs. I own a copy of the game bought at full price. I've fulfilled my end of both the commercial and the social contract. Now it's your turn to deliver.

(in reply to micheljq)
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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/24/2014 6:57:06 AM   
AxelNL


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Zartacla, again it was me blocking the public beta last two days as I discovered a regression bug on reforming divs in the last alpha.
As that was fixed yesterday the new public beta is now on its way via Matrix, and should be accessible for customers soon.

You are right on above, and your first part on supply I am focussing on. I have now 7 gamesaves made available to Steve to help him in the coming supply release. I have also discovered once your statement on supply calculations in Russia, and provided the savegame to Steve. It was Rundstedt who took 8 seconds to be picked up 2 hexes deep in Russia on its way to Kiev. I did not find problems in any other area of Russia yet. Did you find a pattern?

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/24/2014 1:13:40 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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Hi Zartacla,

Per the new plan, we are focusing on some game-blocking bugs each week, but otherwise on one area at a time. Public updates will also be a bit less frequent, but hopefully more solid. I'm not sure what you were expecting, but we're proceeding exactly as I described above. Course changes take some time, but I think this is the right track for us to be on. We tried rapid, broad spectrum updates since release and while they fixed many bugs, they did not lead to happy customers - I think this new course will get us where we all want to be. We just need some patience from everyone as we try a more focused and more steady approach.

Regards,

- Erik


< Message edited by Erik Rutins -- 3/24/2014 2:14:33 PM >


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For official support, please use our Help Desk: http://www.matrixgames.com/helpdesk/

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/24/2014 3:36:05 PM   
CrusssDaddy

 

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Step into the Wayback Machine to 2005 (nine years ago?!?!?) to check out a previous MWiF restart. It sounds suspiciously the same...

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=894911&mpage=1

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/24/2014 5:36:30 PM   
Numdydar

 

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Ok. Yes it sounds the same. So what? Unless your machine can take the world back to that point so things can be fixed before we got to this point, what, exactly, do you think Matrix should do NOW? Give up, abanadon the project? Try and fix it the way Eric describes?

Pointing out past comments, while fun, is just that past. Absolutely NOTHING can be done today to effect what happened 9 years ago, Hoerver, CONSTRUCTIVE comments on what Steve/Matrix could do in order to move forward, would be very valuable. Is there anything along those lines you could contribute?

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/24/2014 5:49:43 PM   
CrusssDaddy

 

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My point is that this is still a hobbyist project, run by a guy with a day job (or now retired?) and a bunch of volunteer testers, who all are nice people and have good intentions but are woefully insufficient to the task at hand. Despite this, MWiF is being marketed and priced (callously, in my opinion) as a professional product. Matrix refused to invest professional resources nine years ago and they persist in that refusal today. Nothing has changed and Matrix, while pretending to engage the community, is just blowing smoke.

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/24/2014 6:27:42 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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Hi CrusssDaddy,

You are certainly entitled to that opinion. Hopefully we will be able to show you results that change your mind.

Regards,

- Erik


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For official support, please use our Help Desk: http://www.matrixgames.com/helpdesk/

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/24/2014 7:23:11 PM   
CrusssDaddy

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

Hi CrusssDaddy,

You are certainly entitled to that opinion. Hopefully we will be able to show you results that change your mind.

Regards,

- Erik



I'm not a customer, I'm just advocating on behalf of fellow WiF enthusiasts who I think have been jerked around. If I'm wrong about your current efforts I'm happy to hear different: have you added as part of this new effort professional resources beyond Steve and the beta testers? (Note: Accelerated meeting schedules and increased executive scrutiny does not fulfill my definition of "added professional resources.")

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Post #: 14
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/24/2014 10:06:24 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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First, we've put a lot of "professional resources" into WIF since the start of the project, though mainly in areas other than programming. However, we do not have another Delphi programmer as I've explained before and the game design and code base is such that you'd need another WIF expert and Delphi expert (combined in one like Steve) and at least a year to get up to speed. However, we have since my last update brought our Technical Director, who is also an excellent programmer, back into the project (he was involved pre-release as well) to do another review of the design of NetPlay and our server together with Steve and see if there is anything we're missing (other than more development time and addressing the known bugs) that will help us get it to a stable state as quickly as possible.

Regards,

- Erik


_____________________________

Erik Rutins
Director of Product Development


For official support, please use our Help Desk: http://www.matrixgames.com/helpdesk/

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/24/2014 11:57:39 PM   
CrusssDaddy

 

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As you may imagine, professional resources deployed to marketing and rulebook publishing aren't really what I'm looking for. What you have described your technical director doing sounds like executive scrutiny.

Noting that bringing a new programmer up to speed would take a year is painful when you consider the good that might have been accomplished nine (9) years ago if that had been adopted.

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/25/2014 12:45:33 AM   
RickInVA

 

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I have never posted any negative comments on either the state of the game, the progress of improvements, or Matrix Games in general. However, I am a full price (with maps) buyer of this title, and I have to say that I am disappointed with what I have read here recently.

While it might take a year to get a new programmer up to speed, had that person been hired at launch (a time when it had to be painfully obvious that there was still LOTS of work to do) that person would now be 5 months into that year of start up time, and would probably be contributing by now.

As has been pointed out that is the past and cannot be changed. However, looking into the future, will there still be work to do 12 months from now? Will Steve continue to work on MWiF forever? Would hiring another programmer show customers that Matrix is committed to the long haul and in getting the game right? You may have your own answers, but mine are: Yes, No, Yes.

Like many companies Matrix Games trades heavily on their reputation. I own several Matrix titles and have willingly paid the premium price for them as I had confidence that they would be superior products. I implore Matrix to not let MWiF imperil that reputation. Bite the bullet and commit the resources to move forward for the long term.

< Message edited by RickInVA -- 3/25/2014 12:47:34 PM >

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/25/2014 4:00:46 PM   
celebrindal


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Where do we go for the public beta test files? And not to sound facetious but i'd say we have already been doing beta testing

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/25/2014 5:23:59 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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To respond to the points above - to our knowledge no such other programmer exists. Steve is the only one we've found with the combination of WIF knowledge, expertise in Delphi and the diligence and organization to deal with this code base. As I said before, we have no one internally who even programs in Delphi and over the time that we've worked on WIF several other programmers have helped Steve out in certain areas, but none have been able to do what he has done in terms of mastering the ins and outs of the game and code base.

Our Technical Director is also the lead developer for several of our games, so he's not just "management", but he's not a Delphi programmer. We hope his renewed involvement will be helpful, but the point is that we're doing everything we can to improve WIF from our side.

Steve has our confidence and is capable of fixing the reported issues with WIF. I'll repeat again that while we appreciate greatly the patience shown by the community to date, we need to ask for a bit more to put this new plan into effect and hopefully the results will speak for themselves.

You can find the first public beta update through the link in this post:

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3578629

Regards,

- Erik




< Message edited by Erik Rutins -- 3/25/2014 6:26:09 PM >


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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/25/2014 7:49:53 PM   
CrusssDaddy

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

we're doing everything we can to improve WIF from our side.



This statement is demonstrably false.

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/25/2014 8:29:59 PM   
Numdydar

 

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Again? Would you rather NOT have any version of WiF other than CWiF done for the computer? Or now that it is here, just abandon the project entirely? I still do not understand the points you are trying to make with these comments.

You say you feel sorry for fellow WiF players that have been jerked around. I happen to agree that many WiF players may feel that way (I do not for the record). Ok, they have been jerked around. Now what do you suggest Matrix to actually do at this point? Do you not think that with the state of the game to date, they have paid a price in reputation and sales because of this? I certainly feel they have, but do not know for sure. Steve certainly feels the pain as this is 100% his effort. And feels just as much pain about the current game state as you do about WiF players being jerked around.

As a suggestion, instead of making these comments that help no one as far as I can tell, prove Matrix wrong. Find another Delphi programer who is an expert on WiF and pass their name to Eric. Now THAT would be useful.

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/25/2014 11:06:48 PM   
CrusssDaddy

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Numdydar

I still do not understand the points you are trying to make with these comments.



I know, and this does not bother me.

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Post #: 22
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/26/2014 12:38:23 AM   
RickInVA

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

To respond to the points above - to our knowledge no such other programmer exists. Steve is the only one we've found with the combination of WIF knowledge, expertise in Delphi and the diligence and organization to deal with this code base. As I said before, we have no one internally who even programs in Delphi and over the time that we've worked on WIF several other programmers have helped Steve out in certain areas, but none have been able to do what he has done in terms of mastering the ins and outs of the game and code base.

Our Technical Director is also the lead developer for several of our games, so he's not just "management", but he's not a Delphi programmer. We hope his renewed involvement will be helpful, but the point is that we're doing everything we can to improve WIF from our side.

Steve has our confidence and is capable of fixing the reported issues with WIF. I'll repeat again that while we appreciate greatly the patience shown by the community to date, we need to ask for a bit more to put this new plan into effect and hopefully the results will speak for themselves.

You can find the first public beta update through the link in this post:

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3578629

Regards,

- Erik


Erik, I can easily believe that it is difficult, even impossible, to find a Delphi programmer what is also a WiF expert. It should not, however, be impossible to find a Delphi programmer that can become a WiF expert. No one is born knowing WiF, anyone can learn.

I work in an Agile Team. We do not do programming, but similar to the current situation we often are assigned projects that we have very little knowledge of. We then gain the knowledge necessary to complete the project. If we waited to find an expert in everything we do, we would never get anything done. There could be a lesson to learn here.

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 23
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/26/2014 1:47:27 AM   
Numdydar

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: CrusssDaddy


quote:

ORIGINAL: Numdydar

I still do not understand the points you are trying to make with these comments.



I know, and this does not bother me.


Good Because it does not bother me that it does not bother you

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Post #: 24
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/26/2014 7:49:16 AM   
WarHunter


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quote:

ORIGINAL: RickInVA


quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

To respond to the points above - to our knowledge no such other programmer exists. Steve is the only one we've found with the combination of WIF knowledge, expertise in Delphi and the diligence and organization to deal with this code base. As I said before, we have no one internally who even programs in Delphi and over the time that we've worked on WIF several other programmers have helped Steve out in certain areas, but none have been able to do what he has done in terms of mastering the ins and outs of the game and code base.

Our Technical Director is also the lead developer for several of our games, so he's not just "management", but he's not a Delphi programmer. We hope his renewed involvement will be helpful, but the point is that we're doing everything we can to improve WIF from our side.

Steve has our confidence and is capable of fixing the reported issues with WIF. I'll repeat again that while we appreciate greatly the patience shown by the community to date, we need to ask for a bit more to put this new plan into effect and hopefully the results will speak for themselves.

You can find the first public beta update through the link in this post:

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3578629

Regards,

- Erik


Erik, I can easily believe that it is difficult, even impossible, to find a Delphi programmer what is also a WiF expert. It should not, however, be impossible to find a Delphi programmer that can become a WiF expert. No one is born knowing WiF, anyone can learn.

I work in an Agile Team. We do not do programming, but similar to the current situation we often are assigned projects that we have very little knowledge of. We then gain the knowledge necessary to complete the project. If we waited to find an expert in everything we do, we would never get anything done. There could be a lesson to learn here.

Learning how to play MWiF is very easy within our cycle of life. Once you are hooked, why the hell play anything else.

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RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/26/2014 3:08:53 PM   
rsunley

 

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From: Perth, Western Australia
Status: offline
I don't post a lot on this site but I am a MWiF customer and I just wanted to put in my 2 cents on this issue. I purchased this game in full knowledge that it had some issues to iron out. Anyone who has followed Steve's development blog over the last few years would be well aware of the complexity of the project and the amount of work he has put in to get it completed. When the announcement that it was to be released came out I was a bit surprised as the bug count in the blog seemed to be reasonably high, but after waiting so long and getting so close I understood the decision to go ahead with it. I made the decision to purchase because I wanted Steve to get something back for the investment of not only years of work but undoubtedly his personal health as well. I used to play the board game version back in the day but I figured it would take me quite a while to get back up to speed with the system as well as learning to drive the game. Therefore I do not mind how long it takes to resolve problems, I only care that they are resolved. To that end the announcement of renewed focus on this area is welcome. Regarding the available programming resources, it is easy to say what should or should not have happened in the past. Steve did end up getting some help towards the end of the project which no doubt assisted the process. I agree with other posters though that any developer worth his salt should be able to get up to speed with the task at hand reasonably quickly, regardless of the end product.

I think that this product is a magnificent piece of work and I am not going to let a few kinks dissuade me from that view. I look at this period as a post-beta phase, with the amount of testers increased by several orders of magnitude. Often issues can only be seen once a product is out in the wild, just ask any major software company, most of whom spend enormous resources on testing but still things go wrong. It may be valid to say that if people are paying good money they deserve something that works; this is fair enough, but to make an informed decision it does not take too much digging around to find out the current state of the product. If you don't want to buy something you view as being incomplete, you have every right to keep hold of your money. If you feel the product has been misrepresented to you, then you have every right to take that up with the publisher. If, on the other hand you want to support the good work that has already been done and help get the last bits fixed, then that option is available.

Lastly I am ever the optimist and I look forward to seeing the AI at work one day.

Regards
Ralph

(in reply to WarHunter)
Post #: 26
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 3/26/2014 4:09:13 PM   
celebrindal


Posts: 281
Joined: 2/26/2005
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

To respond to the points above - to our knowledge no such other programmer exists. Steve is the only one we've found with the combination of WIF knowledge, expertise in Delphi and the diligence and organization to deal with this code base. As I said before, we have no one internally who even programs in Delphi and over the time that we've worked on WIF several other programmers have helped Steve out in certain areas, but none have been able to do what he has done in terms of mastering the ins and outs of the game and code base.

Our Technical Director is also the lead developer for several of our games, so he's not just "management", but he's not a Delphi programmer. We hope his renewed involvement will be helpful, but the point is that we're doing everything we can to improve WIF from our side.

Steve has our confidence and is capable of fixing the reported issues with WIF. I'll repeat again that while we appreciate greatly the patience shown by the community to date, we need to ask for a bit more to put this new plan into effect and hopefully the results will speak for themselves.

You can find the first public beta update through the link in this post:

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3578629

Regards,

- Erik





Been a number of years but I could be persuaded to help out!

_____________________________

Order is nothing more than Chaos on a bad day.

Dave

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 27
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 4/3/2014 11:31:39 PM   
rkr1958


Posts: 723
Joined: 5/21/2009
Status: offline
-- misfire --

< Message edited by rkr1958 -- 4/4/2014 12:33:24 AM >

(in reply to CrusssDaddy)
Post #: 28
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 4/3/2014 11:32:47 PM   
rkr1958


Posts: 723
Joined: 5/21/2009
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: CrusssDaddy

I'm not a customer, I'm just advocating on behalf of fellow WiF enthusiasts who I think have been jerked around. If I'm wrong about your current efforts I'm happy to hear different: have you added as part of this new effort professional resources beyond Steve and the beta testers? (Note: Accelerated meeting schedules and increased executive scrutiny does not fulfill my definition of "added professional resources.")

I am a customer and satisfied owner of MWiF. Though new to WiF, I now count myself among the WiF enthusiasts. Please do NOT "advocate" for me.

quote:

ORIGINAL: CrusssDaddy


quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

we're doing everything we can to improve WIF from our side.



This statement is demonstrably false.

Funny ... I believe this statement to be completely true.

< Message edited by rkr1958 -- 4/4/2014 12:34:16 AM >

(in reply to CrusssDaddy)
Post #: 29
RE: IMPORTANT: State of the Game and Future Plans as of... - 4/5/2014 2:22:10 PM   
oto02

 

Posts: 31
Joined: 1/19/2006
Status: offline
quote:

Steve will also meet with our Technical Director next week for a review of the remaining Net Play issues as this remains high on our list of priorities and we will be giving you some feedback on that point after they have met.


I spent some time to re-read this newest statement. Did the meeting result in anything? Can't find anything in this thread.

Even though I agree with the prioritized areas I think at least a discussion should be initialized about Net Play and at least a hint about when any Net Play improvements can be continued.

Apart from fixing the current flow and not run into freezes and crashes, there are other things to consider to improve Net Play to a usable state.

Some suggestions:
- Create a separate "Net Play - Tech support" topic in the forum.
- Change the save game procedure so that when one side saves a game the other is forced to save at the same time. The save game files for both sides should contain the same information (some basic encryption/password protection of US Entry and garrison chits should be all that's needed). Unit comments are personal and should not be included in the shared save game file (see below for another reason).
- Add some form of validation between phases (where needed) so that the unit status for both sides (e.g. disorganized units) is checked and resolved (by the players if the computer cannot determine this).
- It should be possible to open up a saved game without the other side being on-line, to check your units and plan between Net Play sessions. And preferably add comments for your own units (in the separate file suggested above).
- If being the active side, allow that player to perform actions in that phase, but not proceed to the next phase (or why not allow to proceed and send a game save e-mail to the opponent, adding PBEM ability to Net Play).
- After each phase, the non phasing player should be able to replay the opponent actual moves and actions. When playing the board game everyone is present and has the ability to watch what happens and ask questions (did you move that unit? Where did it come from?) and to make sure the opposing side follows the game rules. In the computer game this is enforced by the computer, so players will not spend time watching the opponent move, and should not have to.
- If a game crash occurs, the other player should be notified. Needing to rely on phone text messages, e-mail and actual phone calls should not be necessary, as it is now. No fun having to re-do a move because your oppenents game crashed.
- Add the ability to be able to select to chat with All, Side or Individual. Not needed now, but work that into the interface at least.

This is what I can think of now, but I'm sure this list will grow the more I think about it. And I'm sure many more suggestions will come when the "Net Play - Tech Support" is created.



(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 30
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