Author Topic: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.  (Read 6931 times)

Offline Coppermantis

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #15 on: January 17, 2014, 01:33:39 AM »
So far, easily the most testers we've had for a game.

That, of course, doesn't mean we'll get plenty of feedback from all of them. We've had testers in the past who give very little to none, but, we've never had this many testers before. (Unless Tidalis had a big long list I"m not aware of before I got here.)

Guilty! :(

I wasn't able to contribute any Bionic Dues observations until it had shipped (and still have some in a .txt file), so in spite of my best intentions and desires, I didn't actively seek a beta test position for this one.

If I get an invite anyway (having been on the list), I'll take advantage of it, of course. But I'm slightly afraid of being as time-strapped as before.

Either way, will be monitoring the beta threads on coffee breaks for those drips and drabs of information!

I've done that too. I got into the AVWW2 and Bionic betas without even applying (I got in by doing level slices for AVWW2 and contributing to the robot design thread on Bionic) and although I tried I didn't feel particularly helpful. I'm just not good at giving feedback, since when something seems off I subconsciously assume that it's just me being dumb and not getting something, or I just don't notice that anything's off.

Like you, if I get into one I'll do what I can to help out, but that's unfortunately limited by my time available and the aforementioned obliviousness to problems.
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Offline chemical_art

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #16 on: January 17, 2014, 04:43:54 AM »
I'm just not good at giving feedback, since when something seems off I subconsciously assume that it's just me being dumb and not getting something, or I just don't notice that anything's off.


Been there.

Which is why for this run I'll just roll with it. If anything causes a "?" that isn't solved in 10 seconds, then I notate it. If I fix it myself in a minute, I add in how to shorten the process. If anything causes a "?" for more then a minute, I stop, notate in length, and wait for response.

It seemed to help SH a bit.
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Offline x4000

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #17 on: January 17, 2014, 08:49:07 AM »
I should qualify that if you aren't giving feedback, it's not like we send goon squads to your house or something. ;)

Really when people sign up with the intent to help us out with testing, that's not really an issue if they wind up not having time -- I mean, life happens, and this isn't your job or something.  That goes mainly for people that we already know in some capacity, through the forums or prior bug reports or testing or whatever else.  For someone new, if they sign up, take the game, and then give no feedback, that's kind of suspicious because it can seem like they just wanted a free game.  But even there -- I mean, I'm not exactly paranoid about that, and if you are new and you wind up not having time, I'm not going to be thinking bad thoughts about you or something.

I should also note that when it comes to giving feedback, it's not something where we expect 100 mantis tickets from everyone or something.  Honestly if we had that, we'd go nuts.  Having really long narratives of your play experience are also something that is really time consuming for you and us, and doesn't tend to be that useful.  Basically, just making a quick note when something jumps out at you negatively, or when you happen to see something positive that you think could be cross-applied somewhere else, or when you have an idea for whatever else.  That's all there is to it.

Obviously when you find an outright bug, that's slightly more involved since we need enough information (usually a savegame, or other info) to replicate it.

But in general, it's more of a low pressure thing.  Just play, and see what jumps out at you.  If something rubs you the wrong way but you can't tell why, THEN doing some more soul-searching and detailed analysis to see why is a good thing. 

As opposed to kind of approaching the game clinically from the start, with your rubber gloves on, which gives a different sort of experience than if you were just trying to play the game.  I think a lot of people think we expect them to do that, but actually we don't.  That changes how the player is approaching the game from the get-go, not always positively.  It can make someone really get focused into minutiae and miss larger things that are actually bugging them, for instance.  Or it can lead us down ratholes that are something minor that actually causes more problems when we try to solve it, rather than just leaving it alone.  Etc.

Granted, it's our job to sort through whatever feedback does come in in order to decide what to act on and when.  And we'd always rather have too much than too little (within reason).  But I think a lot of folks view the alpha/beta testing like we expect a ten page report from them at the end of each week, and that's really not what we're ever expecting or wanting. :)

Just some thoughts from my point of view on the other side of this, anyhow.  I'm not trying to convince anyone to join the alpha who doesn't have time, but for anyone reading this in general, I thought it might be useful to know our thought process on what we actually are looking for.  Later I'll have to clean this up and make it into an actual blog post.
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Offline Penumbra

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #18 on: January 17, 2014, 12:44:57 PM »
Having really long narratives of your play experience are also something that is really time consuming for you and us, and doesn't tend to be that useful.

 ???  :-\  :-[

Sorry!

Offline x4000

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2014, 01:01:07 PM »
It's ok. ;)
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Offline orzelek

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2014, 01:20:57 PM »
Long narratives about game play are more useful to other players :D

Offline x4000

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #21 on: January 17, 2014, 01:35:32 PM »
Oh, that's always fine.  But directed solely at us, not as much.
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Offline Kahuna

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #22 on: January 23, 2014, 06:00:11 AM »
Last Federation sounds really interesting so I'd really like to be alpha/beta testing it.
How and when will you choose the testers?

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if %diff%==max (
   set /A me=:)
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Offline x4000

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #23 on: January 23, 2014, 08:35:36 AM »
1797 hours of AI War.

Holy mother of moses!  I had not seen anyone with that many hours in the game before, I think the max I've actually seen is around 700 prior to this.  You are well past the number of hours of actual playtime I have in the game. ;)  I calculated it out, and I have in the ballpark of 1200 hours from my weekly play sessions that I used to have with the game, not counting testing time during the week.  If you count testing time, the number obviously shoots up, but that's not the same as really playing.

Did you find the other stickied thread about playtesting?
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Offline Misery

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #24 on: January 24, 2014, 02:00:52 AM »
Last Federation sounds really interesting so I'd really like to be alpha/beta testing it.
How and when will you choose the testers?

Sincerely,
1797 hours of AI War.

.....and here I thought *I* was obsessive about some games ("obsessive" not being bad, mind you!).  Particularly considering that I have nothing but free time.

But this.... I cant top this.

Well played, sir.  Well played.

Offline x4000

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #25 on: January 24, 2014, 08:22:51 AM »
To be fair, it seems like you might well have that many hours in on all of the Arcen titles you play if you combine them, heh. ;)
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Offline Misery

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #26 on: January 25, 2014, 05:13:04 AM »
To be fair, it seems like you might well have that many hours in on all of the Arcen titles you play if you combine them, heh. ;)

Hmm, a good point.  :P


Speaking of the alpha, is this still on track for the 27th?

Offline x4000

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #27 on: January 25, 2014, 08:02:48 AM »
For very early this week at the worst. We may start a subset of round 0 folks on the 27th specifically to look at combat balance via combat practice. Not sure.

The larger metagame needs a bit more internal testing before I am sure if that will be ready enough on the 27th or 28th. Either way, it's close. :)
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Offline Kahuna

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #28 on: January 25, 2014, 01:08:40 PM »
Did you find the other stickied thread about playtesting?
Wow. How could I not see that.
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set /A diff=10
if %diff%==max (
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)
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Offline x4000

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Re: Alpha will be starting on the 27th, or thereabouts.
« Reply #29 on: January 25, 2014, 01:10:58 PM »
Sometimes it seems like the stickied threads are actually LESS visible in forums, to me, for some reason.  All good -- sorry to hear you are so tired though!
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