SQUAD

KSP Weekly: We’re back!

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Posted (edited)

I do see where you're coming from, @passinglurker and I think you have a valid point. That said:

5 hours ago, passinglurker said:

I insist based on my own detailed analysis of the part stats that there isn't as much math behind the scenes as you assume.

So, since you've done it.. present your analysis.. that's basically what everyone is asking to see.

8 hours ago, passinglurker said:

again I'd rather leave it to someone who gets a paycheck for figuring stuff like this out

That's a cop-out.. if you've already done an analysis.. present the data. That will give the devs the opportunity to hit the ground running, rather than having to re-do work you've already undertaken.

 

5 hours ago, passinglurker said:

I shouldn't need to crunch all the numbers and do squads job for them to prove this. Nobody had to find all the bugs in the code before squad would be convinced they needed a bug squash update so I shouldn't have to write the whole gameplay side of things for them to prove that ksp was built on a pile of placeholders assets that they procrastinated returning to that still need to [be] refined and polished

True.. you shouldn't have to.. but according to you, you already have. So let's see it already. Heck, if it's as detailed as you claim, maybe Squad might even be interested in hiring you to help sort it out.

Edited by JAFO
Removed unnecessary quote
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3 minutes ago, JAFO said:

So, since you've done it.. present your analysis.. that's basically what everyone is asking for.

wracking my brains trying to make a mod to satisfy my own standards and writing detailed notes with the expectation to win a debate some day are two different things. find any other amauture modder and ask them how organized thier assets are.

5 minutes ago, JAFO said:

That's a cop-out.. if you've already done an analysis.. present the data. That will give the devs the opportunity to hit the ground running, rather than having to re-do work you've already undertaken.

you want data? open your copy of ksp and look at the stats they are all over the place it's obvious seriously the existence of clashing inconsistent stats shouldn't be up for debate. though I do accept debates on what to do about them.

12 minutes ago, JAFO said:

Agreed.

honestly this is a case where "its broken fix it" could be genuinely applied the parts catalog has never had a proper and thought out balance pass and due to the number of parts and how interconnected they are the breadth of work is massive even listing all the problems would be daunting let alone suggesting fixes and why should I the player and paying customer be expect to catalog and fix such a large and obvious problem? I just want to play and maybe make more little mods when there is something solid to build on top of and proudly be a fan of instead of this inconsistent procrastinated mess born from the greedy rush to 1.0.

20 minutes ago, JAFO said:

True.. you shouldn't have to.. but according to you, you already have. So let's see it already. Heck, if it's as detailed as you claim, maybe Squad might even be interested in hiring you to help sort it out.

thou doth presume too much. I did my own study for my own modding work I obsess over the details wanting to get the essense of stock alike "right" So I believe I was detailed, but since this was a casual project it's not like I kept notes and at no point did I feel like it was my responsibility to go back and make them as I considered it squads responsibility to polish the core game and I had every impression they were going to get around to doing it themselves until the hired modders left, the revamp was canceled, and squad reverted to being a frustrating tease about the future I mean come on! they were so close! 

anyway look at your copies part catalog you won't have to search long

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Fair enough.. you kinda made it sound like you were organised enough to have spreadsheeted it..

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6 minutes ago, JAFO said:

Fair enough.. you kinda made it sound like you were organised enough to have spreadsheeted it..

If I had a spread sheet why would I hesitate to link it? Be honest you weren't expecting a spread sheet.

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Totally honestly? Yes, I was..

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46 minutes ago, JAFO said:

Totally honestly? Yes, I was..

fine benefit of the doubt I make mistakes too and I apologize for causing a misunderstanding

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I'm curious how many times people have to point out that career mode feels like a disjointed pile of mostly unrelated and "forced" features before Squad finally acknowledges it. Probably isn't worth it, rewriting a good chunk of the game would be a pain.

Any news on an art pass, maybe based on PorkJet's excellent prototypes and drawings? Or is that more of a "super secret" kind of thing?

Also, Dev Notes, bring them back please, the detail was welcome. Could just be the holidays, but it's always worth reminding you guys... vOv

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Posted (edited)

32 minutes ago, regex said:

Any news on an art pass, maybe based on PorkJet's excellent prototypes and drawings? Or is that more of a "super secret" kind of thing?

the last time they mentioned the art pass was here...

On 12/2/2016 at 5:33 PM, SQUAD said:

We have been listening to all the concern about what happened to the Rocket Parts Revamp and we wanted to shed some light on that topic. The reality is that the development focus had to shift towards other matters, that is why we decided to make the already completed parts from porkjet’s PartOverhauls public, which you can download here.
Despite the change in priorities, this doesn’t mean that we will put this project aside indefinitely, we may continue porkjet’s work in future installments, but for the time being it is not within our immediate work plans.

While it's still disappointing to me that this was put on hold, but it is even more disturbing that whatever was deemed so much more important than the art pass was also deemed to be worth keeping a secret for this long which just points at this being something the player base will hate and the executives will love (if its a mobile port the kerbals will tell tales about how the sun is actually an ever burning flame war sparked by the rage of a betrayed fanbase)

Edited by passinglurker

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Posted (edited)

6 minutes ago, passinglurker said:

While it's still disappointing to me that this was put on hold, but it is even more disturbing that whatever was deemed so much more important than the art pass was also deemed to be worth keeping a secret for this long which just points at this being something the player base will hate and the executives will love (if its a mobile port the kerbals will tell tales about how the sun is actually an ever burning flame war sparked by the rage of a betrayed fanbase)

Alternatively, the "super secret" thing could be the art pass and the thing it got sidelined for could be localization (which even I, an American English monoglot, find a very important feature). vOv

See guys (talking to you, Squad), this is why building hype over "super secret" stuff is stupid. Sure, your forums get more use but in the end you're just tossing the dice on disappointed customers. Keep your stuff like, actually secret until it's time to reveal it.

E: Also, it's not going to be a mobile port. IIRC the console versions are gimped enough as it is.

Edited by regex
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22 hours ago, TriggerAu said:

I'm happy to come in and chat about stuff when I have info to share or things I can chat about for sure, and I'm always keeping an eye on what people are interested in, so please don't stop expressing ideas, desires, concerns, food preferences or jokes :). The community is why KSP is such an engaging thing to be involved in and why its such a great place and project.

If the ears are open... One pet peeve of mine as of late is the fact that text is placed over Kerbals when they EVA as opposed to the header area, eg. the way it was in 1.05. I'm a simple guy, I'd be happy with that changed in the next version :) 

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Thanks for the honest and open comments guys, its helpful to see what players (of all levels) find good and bad with the game and the forum posts. There's things in the above posts that drive me a little nuts as well :P

 

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I`m seeing a lot less plans for future stuff in the weekly these days. Mostly polishing like localisation and a texture pass, nothing in the guts of the code from what I can see.

It might be time for the conversation about widening the API for modders so they get access to ALL the variables they might need to ensure longevity for the game and allow something more like a total conversion mod like is possible in other games which had a long life.

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10 hours ago, regex said:

See guys (talking to you, Squad), this is why building hype over "super secret" stuff is stupid. Sure, your forums get more use but in the end you're just tossing the dice on disappointed customers. Keep your stuff like, actually secret until it's time to reveal it.

So, which is worse: no news or 'We are working on something but we can't tell you about it'?

I think Squad tried the first one and there was great unhappiness that Squad was not saying anything, and now that they are doing the second, there are still concerns but it is not as bad as it was with no news.

 

Trial and error: It's the Kerbal way.

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I am most likely in the minority here but I don't get the art pass concern, or for that matter even the balance issues.. Sure the decouplers are too big and bulky. Other than that, yes the rocket parts appear to be a mix match from at least 3 different companies parts but that is because they are said to be that way in the descriptions. Rather than spend time making them all homogeneous, I'd rather Squad fix the seams and make Duna (for instance) more visually interesting. Maybe give Dres a little color. I've had no trouble building ships, with the stock parts we have, that will take me wherever I want to go. Once I'm there, it is pretty much plant a flag and return. As for balance I have to admit, I do miss the prenerfed Nerv. I also admit I am not looking for total realism. I'd rather have immersive fun. With what I have available I can almost always think my way through or around pretty much anything.

I am not against the art pass or a rebalance. It just isn't presently an issue for me. 

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1 hour ago, Terwin said:

So, which is worse: no news or 'We are working on something but we can't tell you about it'?

That's not what I'm talking about at all.

Quote

I think Squad tried the first one and there was great unhappiness that Squad was not saying anything, and now that they are doing the second, there are still concerns but it is not as bad as it was with no news.

Squad tried talking openly about features before they had decided they should be in the game. They built false hype. The most famous example is the original resource extraction model; I'm pretty sure there's still some customers disappointed over the fact that all that detail got scrapped.

No, what I'm talking about is building hype over everyday, in-progress work that hasn't been formally announced, so called "super secret" features. Squad keeps that sort of thing secret because they're gunshy after the resource extraction fiasco but they still love teasing about it for ... some reason. The thing is, we all know Squad is working on new features for the game (it's part of their job, after all) so I'm not entirely sure what the benefit is in hyping a feature that may not make it into the game, why they hype prototyping before they've decided if the feature is "fun" or not.

How about just hyping the public work? Localization is awesome, detailing how and which bugs were fixed is awesome, "We're still plugging away at our roadmap" is boring but useful (there is no roadmap, though :( ), "OMG GUISE WERE WORKING ON A NEW SUPER EXTRA SECRET FEATURE" is just building unnecessary hype over everyday work and opening the comments section up to cynical posts about past behavior, especially because secret features may be axed (that's why they're secret).

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1 hour ago, regex said:

Squad tried talking openly about features before they had decided they should be in the game. They built false hype. The most famous example is the original resource extraction model; I'm pretty sure there's still some customers disappointed over the fact that all that detail got scrapped.

Yup. And also we have to remember that this @SQUAD is not the same @SQUAD as last year.... will be interesting to see how the current team manages The Hype, and The Very Passionate User/Fanbase. 

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Posted (edited)

22 minutes ago, Kuzzter said:

And also we have to remember that this @SQUAD is not the same @SQUAD as last year....

Well, the employees may not be but "THE FOUNDERS" are still the same two people. How much influence they have (or have had) on the game is anyone's guess.

Edited by regex

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7 hours ago, Terwin said:

So, which is worse: no news or 'We are working on something but we can't tell you about it'?

I think Squad tried the first one and there was great unhappiness that Squad was not saying anything, and now that they are doing the second, there are still concerns but it is not as bad as it was with no news.

 

Trial and error: It's the Kerbal way.

As a software developer myself, I can tell that these kinds of things tend to happen when there is no planning nor roadmap, because when they exist (even if just internal to the team) it's already known in advance which features would be implemented and approximately when. Presence (and accuracy) of such plans is what differentiates professional software development process from amateur-hobby-like "today I want to work on feature "A" 'cause it's cool!, but tomorrow I might change my mind". Everyone who has been following KSP development as long as I have (since 0.17) have seen many-many times that Squad has always been lacking in planning department. This is where all these hiatus came from - when something was announced before it was thoroughly planned and thought through. What they need the most is what they always lacked - experienced project/program manager which have enough experience to understand importance of good planning as well as actually coming though with implementations. Planning not as in "I would be really cool to add feature A", but more as in "Here's features A,B and C that we're going to include into next release. My analysis indicates that it would take approximately X days to design, implement and test, so let's make a public announcement that we're going to deliver A, B and C after 3.14 * X days" (Those who don't know why there's a multiplier next to X has never done any development and just don't understand how that industry works). And whey would actually deliver them in announced time.

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26 minutes ago, asmi said:

As a software developer myself, I can tell that these kinds of things tend to happen when there is no planning nor roadmap, because when they exist (even if just internal to the team) it's already known in advance which features would be implemented and approximately when. Presence (and accuracy) of such plans is what differentiates professional software development process from amateur-hobby-like "today I want to work on feature "A" 'cause it's cool!, but tomorrow I might change my mind". Everyone who has been following KSP development as long as I have (since 0.17) have seen many-many times that Squad has always been lacking in planning department. This is where all these hiatus came from - when something was announced before it was thoroughly planned and thought through. What they need the most is what they always lacked - experienced project/program manager which have enough experience to understand importance of good planning as well as actually coming though with implementations. Planning not as in "I would be really cool to add feature A", but more as in "Here's features A,B and C that we're going to include into next release. My analysis indicates that it would take approximately X days to design, implement and test, so let's make a public announcement that we're going to deliver A, B and C after 3.14 * X days" (Those who don't know why there's a multiplier next to X has never done any development and just don't understand how that industry works). And whey would actually deliver them in announced time.

I've seen the theme described here as well, but just gonna say that this one has some inaccuracies when applied to Squad from what I see. 

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18 minutes ago, asmi said:

As a software developer myself, I can tell that these kinds of things tend to happen when there is no planning nor roadmap, because when they exist (even if just internal to the team) it's already known in advance which features would be implemented and approximately when. Presence (and accuracy) of such plans is what differentiates professional software development process from amateur-hobby-like "today I want to work on feature "A" 'cause it's cool!, but tomorrow I might change my mind". Everyone who has been following KSP development as long as I have (since 0.17) have seen many-many times that Squad has always been lacking in planning department. This is where all these hiatus came from - when something was announced before it was thoroughly planned and thought through. What they need the most is what they always lacked - experienced project/program manager which have enough experience to understand importance of good planning as well as actually coming though with implementations. Planning not as in "I would be really cool to add feature A", but more as in "Here's features A,B and C that we're going to include into next release. My analysis indicates that it would take approximately X days to design, implement and test, so let's make a public announcement that we're going to deliver A, B and C after 3.14 * X days" (Those who don't know why there's a multiplier next to X has never done any development and just don't understand how that industry works). And whey would actually deliver them in announced time.

Things are a little different when:

A) you are pushing the envelope/your product must be performant on a limited hardware budget(like the minimum required system specifications from the original release)

B) you are building on top of someone elses's platform and may encounter issues that make your planned approach(es) unfeasible

C) the features you are working on are neither mission critical nor contractually obligated

Due to B, some things that seem like they should be easy may turn out to be much more difficult/expensive, making the entire feature unfeasible

With C, you will often run into scenarios where a planned feature turns out to have a higher development cost than expected, and those programming hours would be better spent on something else.

With A, you will some times find that the processing power needed to do what you want is more than can be expected for those running your product. 

 

There are many reasons that a feature can be canceled after it is added to the road-map, and not all of them equate to bad management, especially in a sand-box environment like KSP with a huge user base that does not want to lose any existing functionalities.

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38 minutes ago, asmi said:

As a software developer myself, I can tell that these kinds of things tend to happen when there is no planning nor roadmap, because when they exist (even if just internal to the team) it's already known in advance which features would be implemented and approximately when. Presence (and accuracy) of such plans is what differentiates professional software development process from amateur-hobby-like "today I want to work on feature "A" 'cause it's cool!, but tomorrow I might change my mind". Everyone who has been following KSP development as long as I have (since 0.17) have seen many-many times that Squad has always been lacking in planning department. This is where all these hiatus came from - when something was announced before it was thoroughly planned and thought through. What they need the most is what they always lacked - experienced project/program manager which have enough experience to understand importance of good planning as well as actually coming though with implementations. Planning not as in "I would be really cool to add feature A", but more as in "Here's features A,B and C that we're going to include into next release. My analysis indicates that it would take approximately X days to design, implement and test, so let's make a public announcement that we're going to deliver A, B and C after 3.14 * X days" (Those who don't know why there's a multiplier next to X has never done any development and just don't understand how that industry works). And whey would actually deliver them in announced time.

I can only speak about the time I have been working with Squad, but I can assure you that here at Squad we plan new features the best we can and we are always trying to improve our work and planning practices. Thanks for the analysis anyway. 

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1 minute ago, nestor said:

I can only speak about the time I have been working with Squad

Generally those of us who bring up "roadmap" arguments are speaking of the past when things like career mode were being planned having features thrown at a wall to see which stuck. Things turned around once Max left (Not placing blame here, it's just a noteworthy event where communication seemed to change towards more development detail and I, at least, felt more like KSP had a proper roadmap even if I could never see one like the fine folks who make Factorio have done).

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To be honest, I'm not very fond of localization. First of all, KSP is a pretty scientific game and English is the language of science. Translating it will not bring many more players to the community. I would prefer if you guys worked on the core of the game a bit more, e.g.:

  • reduce stuttering (yes, GC is still a major issue)
  • add mission management (like custom sorting active missions or grouping them and manually toggle between mission time and next node time)
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16 hours ago, Terwin said:

Things are a little different when:

A) you are pushing the envelope/your product must be performant on a limited hardware budget(like the minimum required system specifications from the original release)

B) you are building on top of someone elses's platform and may encounter issues that make your planned approach(es) unfeasible

C) the features you are working on are neither mission critical nor contractually obligated

Due to B, some things that seem like they should be easy may turn out to be much more difficult/expensive, making the entire feature unfeasible

With C, you will often run into scenarios where a planned feature turns out to have a higher development cost than expected, and those programming hours would be better spent on something else.

With A, you will some times find that the processing power needed to do what you want is more than can be expected for those running your product. 

If you think that these are some kind of out-of-ordinary circumstances, than you are wrong - it's a day job for many of my colleagues. I deal with that every day. And my computational resources sometimes are even more limited (think microcontrollers which can't perform several billions of operations per second like even very old desktop computer easily can).

 

16 hours ago, Terwin said:

There are many reasons that a feature can be canceled after it is added to the road-map, and not all of them equate to bad management, especially in a sand-box environment like KSP with a huge user base that does not want to lose any existing functionalities.

The thing that every competent project manager knows is that you don't include things into roadmap unless you're reasonably sure you can deliver them on time and on budget. So such cancellations are always project manager's fault (the only exception being divine intervention from "higher-ups" of the company, but that usually is a sign that said company has much bigger managements problems), because it's his job to 1) plan things that can be implemented, 2) once they are planned, allocate enough resources so they can actually be implemented, and 3) manage schedule (expected and unexpected roadblocks), financial (going above budget) and resource (someone gets sick, gets into car accident and ends up in a hospital for 2 months, or just quits for one reason or another) risks to ensure implementation happens when it's supposed to. And if any of above doesn't happen, it's his fault and his alone. That is project management 101, and this is a true essence of project manager's job.

16 hours ago, regex said:

Generally those of us who bring up "roadmap" arguments are speaking of the past when things like career mode were being planned having features thrown at a wall to see which stuck. Things turned around once Max left (Not placing blame here, it's just a noteworthy event where communication seemed to change towards more development detail and I, at least, felt more like KSP had a proper roadmap even if I could never see one like the fine folks who make Factorio have done).

I actually feel the opposite. Before that - as hectic as it was - I've seen things moving somewhere, so there was a hope for a better and brighter future (which was, of course, the part of whole "early access" thing). Right now I have no idea what to expect, which is why I don't expect anything anymore and judge the game for what it is right at that point of time.

What I do know though - such significant change of team's composition will delay any progress for sure. Been there done that.

-------------------

 

But in spite of all that I've said above, I would be more than glad to see Squad proving me wrong by publishing they roadmap for the next year or so, and then seeing them deliver on it. Like many other indie devs manage to do (some of those were mentioned above).

Edited by asmi
typo
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1 hour ago, asmi said:

I actually feel the opposite. Before that - as hectic as it was - I've seen things moving somewhere, so there was a hope for a better and brighter future (which was, of course, the part of whole "early access" thing). Right now I have no idea what to expect, which is why I don't expect anything anymore and judge the game for what it is right at that point of time.

It's probably because I feel KSP is "feature complete" as of 1.2 and that all I really want to see are refinements at this point that I don't particularly care what gets added unless it completely screws up how things are.

I mean, they're certainly not going to rethink career mode.

Quote

But in spite of all that I've said above, I would be more than glad to see Squad proving me wrong by publishing they roadmap for the next year or so, and then seeing them deliver on it. Like many other indie devs manage to do (some of those were mentioned above).

Would be nice but It'll never happen.

E: I also find it funny how Squad is revered as a company that did EA right; I don't think so in the slightest. Many other indie devs have done it much, much better, providing a clear picture of where they want to take the game and setting expectations. Squad set expectations of "we're not going to tell" and instead relied on hype, so instead of a roadmap we get an orgiastic "hype train" thread on the forums.

Edited by regex
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