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RogerK

Understanding of Early Access

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Its really sad that a lot of people really dont understand what "Early Access" is. I think the main reason is that the big publishers started to use this term for their own "big" games.

Buy "BF5" now for a shitload of money to play 2 weeks earlier than your friends IS NOT the meaning of early access. They want you to spend more money for a finished game that was produced

with millions of capital from the publisher. 

 

REAL EARLY ACCESS is that devs who cant find a big publisher (because the target group is not big enough, and the publishers want to make money) are asking us if we want to spend some money to realize a game thats not mainstream. If you buy it you get a piece of software thats unfinshed (!) because it cant be done without us. we pay for the development, and we the test unfished versions to help in the development because we want this game. Its absoluty normal that it has problems, lags, crashes, people who cant start it while other guys having 100fps. And if someone dont want to part of this.. dont buy it, wait if it becaomes the game you want and get it later. 

 

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Agreed 100%. A lot of it is self entitled, self centered children / people who have the mental age of a child who don't understand what they're buying or seem to have unrealistic expectations when they purchase an early access title. Its pretty rotten. 

I think a rebranding from 'early access' to something else like 'alpha access' would make more sense, along with a short disclaimer (with an actual tick box) on every purchase through Steam that asks if a person is aware of what they're buying explicitly before they buy it. Furthermore some sort of restriction or moderating around people leaving bunk reviews because they still fail to understand what EA/alpha means and they're having a bad time.

Edited by N4choLibre
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5 minutes ago, N4choLibre said:

Agreed 100%. A lot of it is self entitled, self centered children / people who have the mental age of a child who don't understand what they're buying or seem to have unrealistic expectations when they purchase an early access title. Its pretty rotten. 

I think a rebranding from 'early access' to something else like 'alpha access' would make more sense, along with a short disclaimer (with an actual tick box) on every purchase through Steam that asks if a person is aware of what they're buying explicitly before they buy it. Furthermore some sort of restriction or moderating around people leaving bunk reviews because they still fail to understand what EA/alpha means and they're having a bad time.

Pretty much this x 100000

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There are points in for expecting devs to actually do something (which they are) and not getting screwed out of your money or having the game not meet its potential.

It really is heart breaking to have a game that you like go in to the shiter and never meet the potential it could have.

But some of these dudes are complaining about nonexistent problems like how the game is unplayable which it is playable.

Should have waited and looked up reviews to see if you would like the game before you buy.

 

EA is not a excuse for a lot of things but you have to expect bugs and a unfinished but playable game.

If the game sucks leave a review.

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It´s really about time that the basic terms of software development are taught in school. EA stands for SID/Alpha, so except bugs. Maybe Steam should make it more clear, when you purchase a EA game, most people seem to thing EA is already stable/release version.

Edited by Flakstar

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This is such an important topic to get right. I've been thinking to myself how can all these people who've just bought early access keep saying the 'launch' was terrible? They treat it like a 'gold' or 1.0 release and expect everything to work out perfectly. There really needs to be a secondary step in steam to make people acknowledge the fact they're buying an unfinished game/piece of software/product. One that may never be completed.

Though with the reputation steam users have managed to give themselves for the level of discussion in the steam discussion sections I guess it's difficult to expect much else.
As echoed by the above posters it seem that we agree on that much. I do believe though that since Early Access via Steam is something valve came up with they should enforce a degree of understanding on their users as really it's on par with kickstarter.

 

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I don't think the situation is that easy.

First let us talk about the launch.

  • The launch was delayed by a few hours because of technical issues.
  • When the game launched on steam it was unplayable till late Sunday evening (GMT)
  • Unplayable means that people could not get past the first or second loading screen. In the best case they could get into the main menu.

Early Access does not mean you can release a game that is unplayable. That is not (just) my personal opinion. This is what steam writes in their own documentation for developers who wish to release a game as a early access title.

Quote

Steam Early Access enables you to sell your game on Steam while it is still being developed, and provide context to customers that a product should be considered "unfinished." Early Access is a place for games that are in a playable alpha or beta state, are worth the current value of the playable build, and that you plan to continue to develop for release.

Quote

6. Don't launch in Early Access without a playable game

Source

 

So in this regard you can not really defend the launch of the game with the fact that it is early access. This is also reflected in the majority of negative reviews from the launch. If a company decides to sell something on steam and it is unplayable, the only logical response from customers will ne a negative one. Nobody forced the developers to release the game in this state. They could have made the decision to delay the release. As a positive example I would like to mention New World Interactive which is the developer of Insurgency Sandstorm. They decided to delay their release because their game was in a bad state. Note that their game was playable, it was simply not "enjoyable. I think that is the main difference a lot of people don't get.

So I personally think that every negative review of the game from the launch is 100% correct, at least when it makes the point that the review is based on the fact that it was unplayable at the time. If you release a game on steam you open your game up for open discussion and reviews. The best defense against negative reviews is to release a game that people like and enjoy. 

Some people here made the point that early access is about crowdfunding. I think that a lot of developers do this, but steam also has (at least openly) a different position here

 

Quote

 

What Early Access Is Not

Early Access is not a way to crowdfund development of your product.
You should not use Early Access solely to fund development. If you are counting on selling a specific number of units to complete your game, then you need to think carefully about what it would mean for you or your team if you don't sell that many units. Are you willing to continue developing the game without any sales? Are you willing to seek other forms of investment?

 

I think the reality is that a lot of developers do take this risk and use it as crowdfunding, but I think it is worth mentioning the official position of steam on this.

 

I gave the game a negative review on the release because it was unplayable. I updated my review but I decided to keep it negative, while also mentioning that the developers have a lot of work to do in order to gain the lost trust back and that there are plently of other reasons why I can not recommend the game to other people for the time being. 

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29 minutes ago, Schlagerfreund said:

I don't think the situation is that easy.

First let us talk about the launch.

  • The launch was delayed by a few hours because of technical issues.
  • When the game launched on steam it was unplayable till late Sunday evening (GMT)
  • Unplayable means that people could not get past the first or second loading screen. In the best case they could get into the main menu.

Early Access does not mean you can release a game that is unplayable. That is not (just) my personal opinion. This is what steam writes in their own documentation for developers who wish to release a game as a early access title.

Source

 

So in this regard you can not really defend the launch of the game with the fact that it is early access. This is also reflected in the majority of negative reviews from the launch. If a company decides to sell something on steam and it is unplayable, the only logical response from customers will ne a negative one. Nobody forced the developers to release the game in this state. They could have made the decision to delay the release. As a positive example I would like to mention New World Interactive which is the developer of Insurgency Sandstorm. They decided to delay their release because their game was in a bad state. Note that their game was playable, it was simply not "enjoyable. I think that is the main difference a lot of people don't get.

So I personally think that every negative review of the game from the launch is 100% correct, at least when it makes the point that the review is based on the fact that it was unplayable at the time. If you release a game on steam you open your game up for open discussion and reviews. The best defense against negative reviews is to release a game that people like and enjoy. 

Some people here made the point that early access is about crowdfunding. I think that a lot of developers do this, but steam also has (at least openly) a different position here

 

I think the reality is that a lot of developers do take this risk and use it as crowdfunding, but I think it is worth mentioning the official position of steam on this.

 

I gave the game a negative review on the release because it was unplayable. I updated my review but I decided to keep it negative, while also mentioning that the developers have a lot of work to do in order to gain the lost trust back and that there are plently of other reasons why I can not recommend the game to other people for the time being. 

 

They didn't expect their game to sell as many copies as it did and they ran into unforeseen issues on launch. This is part of being an Alpha/EA game. The sheer volume of people trying to get in and play at the same time killed their servers, or at least thats my understanding, and their main server collapsed. This is actually a good thing from a development perspective because it identified numerous bugs and issues that they might not have otherwise been able to figure out in such a short space of time.

Sure, EA means shipping a game in a playable state. However I think WW3's launch is a bit of a grey area; it would have been playable had their not been so many players all connecting at the same time. I might be completely wrong, but this is what I've gleaned from reading various comments from moderators or community folk on various social media platforms. 

Judging from the response, I suspect they did not think they'd sell 100k+ copies in its first week. Now they're working hard to fix the game and it seems like its in a playable state for loads and loads of people. And its pretty fun dude. Sure, there's a lot of work to be done but its only going to get better. :)

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O I truly believe that they completely underestimated the load on the main servers. But this was also somewhat avoidable and this is also something that is the job of the developers. So I don't think they should get a free pass for it. They could have done stress testing 1-2 weeks before the planned launch. They decided to do very limited (by numbers) closed testing. If they would have done a free stress test, they would have gotten a relatively fair view on the numbers of interested players. Personally I also don't consider these mistakes a "good" thing. It did a lot of damage to the reputation of the game and the developers. You got a lot of bad reviews and a lot of people refunding the game. The lack of server capacity caused the game to be unplayable for days. This lack was caused by what I guess was poor management.

 

Don't get me wrong, I wish the developers and the game the best possible future, but I also think it does not improve anything if people use the "early access excuse" for things like this. I guess it is just a way for people to cope with their own uncertainty about their own decision making when they bought the game. Nobody wants to be disappointed and it is hard to admit you made a mistake. But blindly defending something will not help yourself and it will also not help the game. 

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10 hours ago, Schlagerfreund said:

Don't get me wrong, I wish the developers and the game the best possible future, but I also think it does not improve anything if people use the "early access excuse" for things like this. I guess it is just a way for people to cope with their own uncertainty about their own decision making when they bought the game. Nobody wants to be disappointed and it is hard to admit you made a mistake. But blindly defending something will not help yourself and it will also not help the game. 

 

You're making a lot of assumptions there about peoples characters. Trying to tell people who aren't as doubtful as yourself that they're just blindly defending something because they are worried they made a bad choice. Literally suggesting its a coping method. ? Who do you think you are dude? Thats pretty twisted. Telling people they don't want to admit they made a mistake lol? What the hell? You need to check yourself dude, thats a very weird approach to take. 

I certainly didn't make a bad choice or a mistake and I'm quite stoked with the game. I had the same problems as everyone else but I didn't whine or throw my toys out the pram because I couldn't play immediately. I left it to see what would happen in good faith and confidence and sure enough the issues were resolved within a few days for loads of people and they continue to get resolved for others. I didn't feel the need to be vindictive and leave a negative review, or go on a huge whiny rant because the game didn't work out for me. I sure as hell wouldn't try and second guess others or imply they're blindly defending a game out of fear / as a coping method because 'they might have made a mistake'. 

I think you ought to take a look at yourself and your own feelings and maybe stop measuring others by your own disappointments. And maybe you ought to not put so much feeling into what is a video game. There are more important things in life bro. 

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8 hours ago, N4choLibre said:

 

You're making a lot of assumptions there about peoples characters. Trying to tell people who aren't as doubtful as yourself that they're just blindly defending something because they are worried they made a bad choice. Literally suggesting its a coping method. ? Who do you think you are dude? Thats pretty twisted. Telling people they don't want to admit they made a mistake lol? What the hell? You need to check yourself dude, thats a very weird approach to take. 

I certainly didn't make a bad choice or a mistake and I'm quite stoked with the game. I had the same problems as everyone else but I didn't whine or throw my toys out the pram because I couldn't play immediately. I left it to see what would happen in good faith and confidence and sure enough the issues were resolved within a few days for loads of people and they continue to get resolved for others. I didn't feel the need to be vindictive and leave a negative review, or go on a huge whiny rant because the game didn't work out for me. I sure as hell wouldn't try and second guess others or imply they're blindly defending a game out of fear / as a coping method because 'they might have made a mistake'. 

I think you ought to take a look at yourself and your own feelings and maybe stop measuring others by your own disappointments. And maybe you ought to not put so much feeling into what is a video game. There are more important things in life bro. 

You are taking this personally which is wrong. I am not aiming at specific people, but I am pretty sure that this is what is going on inside the head of some people. I don't want to drift into psychology or philosophy here but at the end of the day people (including you and me) hope that their decisions were good/right and its not "nice" to realize it may have been wrong. 

Ironically I often made the same statement you did you in your paragraph, but I approach it from a slightly different angle. A lot of people love and hate a game/developers. They get on a very emotional level which often leads to people mindlessly defending a game, or people giving unfair reviews of games. Unfair in the term that they are not really about the facts and are just based on something else. Both is wrong in my eyes because at the end of the day it is a company/customer relationship. I think a lot of people gave very reasonable negative reviews on the launch of the game. It is now up to the devs to turn these people around in the next 12-15 months. 

As said in another thread. Trust is created when words are followed by actions. 

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23 hours ago, N4choLibre said:

 

They didn't expect their game to sell as many copies as it did and they ran into unforeseen issues on launch. This is part of being an Alpha/EA game. The sheer volume of people trying to get in and play at the same time killed their servers, or at least thats my understanding, and their main server collapsed. This is actually a good thing from a development perspective because it identified numerous bugs and issues that they might not have otherwise been able to figure out in such a short space of time.

Sure, EA means shipping a game in a playable state. However I think WW3's launch is a bit of a grey area; it would have been playable had their not been so many players all connecting at the same time. I might be completely wrong, but this is what I've gleaned from reading various comments from moderators or community folk on various social media platforms. 

Judging from the response, I suspect they did not think they'd sell 100k+ copies in its first week. Now they're working hard to fix the game and it seems like its in a playable state for loads and loads of people. And its pretty fun dude. Sure, there's a lot of work to be done but its only going to get better. :)

From what i understood is that there was a issue with the game itself,where it asked way more from the login server than it should have.

That's why we where getting these client side patches,and that's way they didn't found out before the launch,because only a hand full of youtubers where ''stress'' testing.

I've read it somewhere but i forgot where so i can't show the sauce.

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