Jump to content

Development Hell


Recommended Posts

Sorry Ailenkiller, but 4+ years is just too long for something that was promised long ago, Covid et all not withstanding. I am a patient person, have been and always will be. Do you profess to talk for Chris or/and Goldhawk now, do you? Do you REALLY think a release before xmas 2022 is too much to ask? Really? Do you not realise that people will start to fall away from the project? When do you what it to be released? Summer 2028? And don't just say "when it's finished", because as a Software Engineer myself, I know that a project can NEVER really be considered truly finished. There are always things that can be improved. The worst thing you can be as a games programmer is a perfectionist in this respect. Take the project to a decently acceptable conclusion, then let the modders continue the development (iron out things later) if they want to afterwards. As was seen with xen1, the team continued to make improvements after its official release - they didn't just 'drop' things.

There is no reason at all why the game cannot be released in a "playable" finished state rather than a "totally" finished state, which is what I think Chris is aiming for.

This is NOT to say that I don't trust Chris and his team or anything (I do, he's proved himself with xen1) but no one wants to wait forever. A lot of people have put a lot of money into this project.

 

There is a balance to be had. And it is somewhere between releasing trash (xen2 has gone way beyond that from what I've seen) and waiting forever.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I speak as a Founder of that Project as well as an Betatester from first Day on. An third thing I can evaluete when a Game is ready for Public is my about 36 Years Expierance of Playing Games since the 1980s.

And as both as well as my Experiance I can evaluete when a Game is finished. And it´s not finished rudimentary about the nessecarry Chances, Reworks, Refits etc the Devs have to do. I don´t repeat everything what I have announced VERY FRIENDLY A LOT OF TIME.

We Founders all trust the Dev Team and the Freelancers, if not we wouldn´t have been big Founders and Main-Betatesters. The Base-Game with everything what we need to have in against the direct Rival [the UFO ET-Row] must be fully ready without big Bugs etc., then we can think about an DLC with missing Content and so on if the Community is Nice. Like said, the Base-Game isn´t stable for the Public to get into Early Access.

4 Years is nothing in Development. The Game-Studio in England, which is making the first officall licenced F1 Manager since over 22 Years (F1 Manager 2022) is working on it since Years on it. Yes it have the licence since 2 Years (F1, F2 and F3) officially. They know too that only an playable Game and esp. with so high Forecast can hold a long time or bring the fast fall. An good to very good Game-Development is with big Changes minimum 6 Years after the first Idea and Paper-Thing.

The Devs and Freelancers are doing what they can to bring a good to very good Game out in the last light Tests [Early Access] and full finished Game [Basegame]. The Betatesters are the ones which can say an Game is playable or not, like you can read in the Bug-Section. They are the ones, which test the Game from beginn to End with all Risks such an Test can have [full CTDs, Breakdown of the Full Computer in Worst Case etc.]. So be happy that you have such People, which say the Devs if an Game is ready for the Community or not.

And the Devs here don´t have an bad Publisher which is saying after that or that Time the Game have to be ready, playable or not. That very sad Place [bad Publishers] takes the Community instead. There you don´t have to gawp when Xenonauts 2 isn´t playable, finished and so on if the Devs and Betatesters get rushed.

Exact the same Failure get done in UFO 2 ET [Battle for Mercury] Basegame. And an last time friendly said: That You all don´t wanna have. Point!

Edited by Alienkiller
Link to comment
Share on other sites

At this point, the game gets done when the game gets done. There is not any point in promising a release date, though a release date of a playable open build before December is not out of the question. 

I guess we will have to see with v23 how playable and polished it is. If it all goes well, then an open beta or early access launch in December would be pretty feasible. If some of the numerous new mechanics end up needing to be rebalanced and retrofitted to address player feedback, then it might delay the game a little while. Chris may or may not want to re-test many mechanics like orbital bombardment, soldier stress, and offices before releasing an open build as well, delaying it further. 

There is still a lot of work to get done, so prematurely announcing a release date now would not be a great idea. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 3/28/2022 at 2:15 PM, Alienkiller said:

Thanks Kameh.

No more to say about that.

ooey is right. Every critical thought is answered by you with lots of volume, why everybody is wrong and nothing is going wrong.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Critical Thoughts are good, but not with an Time-Limiter or Rushing someone. Sadly the young Guys / Medium Guys Community which have begun playing first in the 2ks after the I-Net were established, took over the worst bad Thing from Publishers: Set an Time-Limit and Rush the Devs / Testers to bring out an Game which isn´t ready for Public.

The Result: Over 80 % up to 90 % on the Market since the last 15 to 20 Years are unplayable Scrap. If you try to help make them Playable you get mostly courtmartialad or similar. And that´s no single Case.

The remaing 10 to 20 % of Dev-Studios which make good to very good Games are the smaller independed Companys (like Goldhawk, Chaos Concept) or linked Companys to a very nice remaining existing Publisher (like Paradox, 2K, Sega).

One more thing you have to think about:

The Teams which bring out very good Games like Goldhawk Interactive, Chaos Concept, Studios in the Ukraine which are self-contained aren´t big. Mostly they are very small or medium (5 to 50 People as Core-Staff). The Remaing contains on Founders (like here) which are Betatesters too and some Freelancers which help the Devs [Translation, Graphics, Storywriter or whatever the Devs ask them for]. 

 

In our Case here an other very big Part you have to look at, which get said a last time very friendly:

The most things from the planed Gameplay on Kickstarter shows itself as not realizeable. In the last 4 Years the Devs, Freelancers and Betatesters have Refited, Reworked and Upgraded the Game as good as possible to give it a stable Ground with the realizable Features of Kickstarter. Big Parts of the Game are not integrated yet [R & D, Storyline, Geoscape-Secrets etc.] and many Parts from already tested Features, which will come in hopfully hardcoded are in Rework / Upgrade for the fix Ground-Platform. To Rush us or give a Time-Limitation from the Community isn´t productive.

That´s bad overtaken Thing from the Community is what all of us, which working on this Project [Devs / Freelancers / Founder-Betatesters], make us very angry.

Esp. the Beta-Testers which have to beginn completly new from 0 on after an new big Version or an Hotfix comes out. Only for the Community we get hundreds and thousends of Hours of Testing, Bughunting etc done with upcomming more hundrets / thousends Hours. That´s no self Evidance after we come home from Family, Friends, Holidays and the needed Work / Sporting Activitys.

Otherewise we could do it like the bad big Companys and let the Community test the Game after they payed the Full Price.

The Choise is yours now:

1. You get an unfinished Product like above on Top announced, which you all are Beta-Testers for a full Price-Product.

2. Or you let us Calmly do our Best and get an maximum tested Product before it goes to an Early Access Status where the Finetuning get done.

Edited by Alienkiller
Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, Alienkiller said:

Critical Thoughts are good, but not with an Time-Limiter or Rushing someone. Sadly the young Guys / Medium Guys Community which have begun playing first in the 2ks after the I-Net were established, took over the worst bad Thing from Publishers: Set an Time-Limit and Rush the Devs / Testers to bring out an Game which isn´t ready for Public.

The Result: Over 80 % up to 90 % on the Market since the last 15 to 20 Years are unplayable Scrap. If you try to help make them Playable you get mostly courtmartialad or similar. And that´s no single Case.

The remaing 10 to 20 % of Dev-Studios which make good to very good Games are the smaller independed Companys (like Goldhawk, Chaos Concept) or linked Companys to a very nice remaining existing Publisher (like Paradox, 2K, Sega).

One more thing you have to think about:

The Teams which bring out very good Games like Goldhawk Interactive, Chaos Concept, Studios in the Ukraine which are self-contained aren´t big. Mostly they are very small or medium (5 to 50 People as Core-Staff). The Remaing contains on Founders (like here) which are Betatesters too and some Freelancers which help the Devs [Translation, Graphics, Storywriter or whatever the Devs ask them for]. 

 

In our Case here an other very big Part you have to look at, which get said a last time very friendly:

The most things from the planed Gameplay on Kickstarter shows itself as not realizeable. In the last 4 Years the Devs, Freelancers and Betatesters have Refited, Reworked and Upgraded the Game as good as possible to give it a stable Ground with the realizable Features of Kickstarter. Big Parts of the Game are not integrated yet [R & D, Storyline, Geoscape-Secrets etc.] and many Parts from already tested Features, which will come in hopfully hardcoded are in Rework / Upgrade for the fix Ground-Platform. To Rush us or give a Time-Limitation from the Community isn´t productive.

That´s bad overtaken Thing from the Community is what all of us, which working on this Project [Devs / Freelancers / Founder-Betatesters], make us very angry.

Esp. the Beta-Testers which have to beginn completly new from 0 on after an new big Version or an Hotfix comes out. Only for the Community we get hundreds and thousends of Hours of Testing, Bughunting etc done with upcomming more hundrets / thousends Hours. That´s no self Evidance after we come home from Family, Friends, Holidays and the needed Work / Sporting Activitys.

Otherewise we could do it like the bad big Companys and let the Community test the Game after they payed the Full Price.

The Choise is yours now:

1. You get an unfinished Product like above on Top announced, which you all are Beta-Testers for a full Price-Product.

2. Or you let us Calmly do our Best and get an maximum tested Product before it goes to an Early Access Status where the Finetuning get done.

quod erat demonstrandum

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nothing is perfect and we Founders / Betatetsters as well as the Devs explained it often enough very friendly why.

We integrated the Community in a Main-Important-Part. They decided it and that´s why the Game-Dev strengh over several Years. So don´t cry why that and that takes longer then expected. So we take us time for the implementation from all other Features now.

Short enough for you Guys!

   

Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 hours ago, Alienkiller said:

Nothing is perfect and we Founders / Betatetsters as well as the Devs explained it often enough very friendly why.

We integrated the Community in a Main-Important-Part. They decided it and that´s why the Game-Dev strengh over several Years. So don´t cry why that and that takes longer then expected. So we take us time for the implementation from all other Features now.

Short enough for you Guys!

   

Fanboy vs Reality

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So I have been quietly following along here for the past four months. Riding the center of the fence and waiting for the time I felt driven enough to air my thoughts. Well here goes. I have around 150 hours of playtesting X 2 . So I have given plenty of time to form an opinion on and about this game. 

From what I was able to play I thoroughly enjoyed the game. Finding ways around the bugs and crashes seemed almost normal. Restarting from scratch with very release and Hotfix all in the name of keeping earth alien free. If it sounds like I'm complaining I'm not. That's what you should expect if one is willing to put time in as a play tester. I have been on board with this from way back in 2016 ( six years ago) when it was a single combat mission.

 Six years is a long time.  Up to four and a half months ago I checked for a new release or hotfix daily ( if not more ). Now I maybe check once a week. There has not been anything ( new version or hotfix ) from the Devs since mid November. I find that very odd . We get an occasional " here's what we have been working on" . But otherwise not much else, unless you read what a certain play tester says the dev's are doing. Must have a hotline to the game studio. What I really want to say is simply my drive for this game is dwindling. I'm sure I am not the only one who is scratching their head wondering what is going on. A little (official) information please, to keep the juices flowing.

I don't claim to know every exact thought (as some do ) of what  the Devs have in mind. What I do know is that this will be a great game if enough people stay interested. 

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey guys! I can wait patiently for years, no, really, what's the worst that can happen? We don't get xenonauts 2? That's same as now, so no biggie.

 

but! Please do something more than "Please visit the Xenonauts 2 steam community here (https://steamcommunity.com/app/538030/allnews/) to read our most recent development updates." at your own site with your own news category. If i wanted to follow you at steam, i'd go make a steam account. Fuck steam. Go x2.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just to let you know, I've been in since the start too (actually one of the first backers for Xenonauts 1). And yes, of course I want it to succeed, we all do (we backed it didn't we?). And no, alienkiller, we are not at extremes of the spectrum (I'm about half-way, whereas you want it released when "finished"). Technically, what would you regard as "finished"? When Chris says it is finished or when you can play right through to complete the game and defeat the aliens? I define it as the latter. Okay, it may have temporary placement graphics for certain things or none at all, or slight bugs, but if you can still get to the end you can regard it as finished. I think you missed my point. If released in THIS state, with the promise of fixes until it is finally up to the standard that Chris wants it, then you are forgetting one small but important point.

Those that have held off playtesting themselves (either because they want a surprise when they tackle the finished product, or because they are too busy to playtest or for any other reason) will do so on 'release'. There are lots of us taking this path, which will add MANY MORE play testers, and thus hopefully any bugs will be ironed out faster. Do you see my point? And sure, I am grateful that there ARE people like you who aren't paid play testers who are helping to knock the game into shape for the rest of us - we thank you for your time and effort in doing so. 

 

On 4/2/2022 at 10:28 PM, meddog50 said:

From what I was able to play I thoroughly enjoyed the game. Finding ways around the bugs and crashes seemed almost normal. Restarting from scratch with very release and Hotfix all in the name of keeping earth alien free. If it sounds like I'm complaining I'm not. That's what you should expect if one is willing to put time in as a play tester. I have been on board with this from way back in 2016 ( six years ago) when it was a single combat mission.

 

My thoughts exactly. From what I've seen things are quite enjoyable and interesting as they are. I don't want to get deep into the game - I mainly want to keep it a surprise for its release (that's why I was overwhelmed with xen1). But. But... for the less patient the interest WILL wane the longer they have to wait. We want EVERYONE on board. And from what Chris has been saying, they are well on their way to a pre-Christmas release.

So with regards to what 'I' believe to be a realistic release state (from what I have heard and seen so far), what is the harm in setting a pre-Christmas release date? Many many projects in the past that never set a release date just "disappeared". Bandersnatch killed Imagine (yes I am old enough to have had plenty of 8-bit computers). That game (on the ZX Spectrum) was one of many that kept having its release date changed and people just lost interest. The problem with it was, if I remember, it was too technically difficult to achieve for the 8-bit computers. Xen 2 is not really a technical challenge, just one of content. Chris proved with xen1 that him and his team are technically proficient.

Edited by ooey
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If I was harsh in my last Posts, then I´m very sorry.

The Thing is, that the Game needed from Ground on in some Parts a big refit about the Things which haven´t worked after many Fixes, Try & Errors and so on up to V16 or similar. I can´t remember that Versions exactly. After that was done and all Versions after the big Groundrefit up to V21 / V22 with new Features and so on get testet, the first big Bugs should be out of the Game now.

In the upcomming V23 we (Founders / Betatesters and Devs / Freelancers) hope to get the Game fullly stable now, that the other Parts which get still missing (R & D, Specials on the Geoscape, more Storyline and so on) can be integrated to make an more interresting Open Beta eventually to the End of the Year for more Founders / Betatesters like the Game UBoat is doing it. If all goes well it will be V27 or similar.

The constant hard Working Founders / Betatesters schould be able to make an full Run / Playtrough in the next Versions with the Standard Win- / Lose-System. More Alternatives are comming for the Gameend (if I have an older Dev Diray correct in Mind 5 Playthrough-Ends incl. the old Standard Win- / Lose-System) and more cool Stuff in the Game-Phases (Start, Mid, End) with overworked already testet Features etc. to make Xenonauts 2 more differnt to the predecessor.

There are light and medium Differneces to the Predecessor already integrated. Testet Features which come back Reworked / Upgraded Step by Step will bring in more medium and big differences to the Predecessor, so that the public Beta-Test will be an big hit.

Edited by Alienkiller
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, Alienkiller said:

If I was harsh in my last Posts, then I´m very sorry.

The Thing is, that the Game needed from Ground on in some Parts a big refit about the Things which haven´t worked after many Fixes, Try & Errors and so on up to V16 or similar. I can´t remember that Versions exactly. After that was done and all Versions after the big Groundrefit up to V21 / V22 with new Features and so on get testet, the first big Bugs should be out of the Game now.

In the upcomming V23 we (Founders / Betatesters and Devs / Freelancers) hope to get the Game fullly stable now, that the other Parts which get still missing (R & D, Specials on the Geoscape, more Storyline and so on) can be integrated to make an more interresting Open Beta eventually to the End of the Year for more Founders / Betatesters like the Game UBoat is doing it. If all goes well it will be V27 or similar.

The constant hard Working Founders / Betatesters schould be able to make an full Run / Playtrough in the next Versions with the Standard Win- / Lose-System. More Alternatives are comming for the Gameend (if I have an older Dev Diray correct in Mind 5 Playthrough-Ends incl. the old Standard Win- / Lose-System) and more cool Stuff in the Game-Phases (Start, Mid, End) with overworked already testet Features etc. to make Xenonauts 2 more differnt to the predecessor.

There are light and medium Differneces to the Predecessor already integrated. Testet Features which come back Reworked / Upgraded Step by Step will bring in more medium and big differences to the Predecessor, so that the public Beta-Test will be an big hit.

See, you're treating people with some disrespect. Or right away as idiots, because you brush off very obvious thoughts with just a lot of words, which are repetitive. Everybody here is either a backer or somehow a hardened fan. Thats why everybody invested time and money, and a lots of patience as well.

Critical question being asked after 4 years is a very natural thing to do, it is rational and logical. Explaining how wrong all the rational and logical thoughts of some very patient adtult people are neither makes the obvious problems disappear, nor does it help the community or the patience shown by those very people. The critique here is: Why aren't there no information to the very backers of the game, which made it possible and are the (only) fanbase left? Why arn't there any satisfactory explanations for the delay in years? Why does the game feel so very much like Xenonauts 1? 

I am waiting and testing the game ever since, I am leading a couple of different organizations and a software company. So I do know - as many others here too - how difficult development is, how sticky things can become.Peope are not stupid. They know how things feel. They know if stuff motivates them to dig in or if stuff bores them. They know, if they feel and experience something new; or they have a déjà vu. 

Round about two years ago I wrote down my impressions. Your only reaction was to tell me, how wrong my feelings and impressions are. Now we have more years of development, and still I don't see or feel the difference to X1. But the feeling of a game is my motivation to play that game. And the feeling of a difference ist the motivation to fare for a successor. And right now I almost don't care any more, as my children have grown over the same time as well as my company rolled out three major products. 

 

So you or the devs or whoever is invested should do some motivational work = explanation *and* take the feedback seriously. Otherwise X2 is doomed fade away as most of the other xcom-clones. As long we're critical, we still are invested. Though the clock is ticking, as you can read in the reactions above. 

Edited by mcw
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

That could be read out of my written words if they get misunderstood. English is not my Main-Language, and it dosen´t matter how good I translate, that can happen without to speak directly to Persons / Groups.

Many of us here are Founders, that´s correct. But not all are Testing like the constant Betatestteam from beginning on. We respect the untesting Founders. But then they have to respect us too, while we are doing the hard Testwork after comming home from Work, Family and so on.

What we don´t respect are the impertinent Suggestions, Demands etc. from the Communty which refuse the Game and / or Features from the outset. And esp. the unrespect for the Time we need to bring the Game stable to get to the next Step, which beginns now in V.23 and long before. Dosen´t matter where [Steam, Kickstarter or wherever the Game get presentet and Community informed].

If nice formulated Explenations of the Features / Gameprogress / Bugfixes / Refits / Reworks get several times ignored or refused from the outset, then the Maximum Point of affability is reached. Esp. if the Communty get integrated and then get said from them that the Refit of the stable Baseground takes to long.

I don´t know if you read the Steam Community from Xenonauts 2, but there the People bring last Straw to the Maximum Point of affability realy fast.

Edited by Alienkiller
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, you will find the young amongst us to be more impatient, naturally. We are all different. There is no getting away from the fact that the longer the younger of us have to wait, the less interested they become. Being old, I only play a very few games (mainly War Thunder, Strategy titles like HOI3 and even UFO: enemy unknown/xen1). Being young, there are lots of shiny games about to distract them away (my 18 yo nephew plays all-sorts). Xen2 is one of a very few old-school turn-based games in development now - let's not turn them away from it.

Seeing as xen2 is reasonably similar to xen1, you would think that many lessons had been learnt from xen1 which would have cut the development time dramatically. I never really minded if xen2 was to be a more refined and feature-packed version of xen1 (with a better ending).

Alien: your passion is good, and your English is fine! But there are always going to be different viewpoints; neither is right or wrong really. It's really Chrisses decision and he will have to live or die by it. There was nothing wrong with the way he went about xen1, so why not do it with zen2 (that is release rough, refine later)? As long as players are aware this is his strategy then I think all will cope.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, ooey said:

Well, you will find the young amongst us to be more impatient, naturally. We are all different. There is no getting away from the fact that the longer the younger of us have to wait, the less interested they become. Being old, I only play a very few games (mainly War Thunder, Strategy titles like HOI3 and even UFO: enemy unknown/xen1). Being young, there are lots of shiny games about to distract them away (my 18 yo nephew plays all-sorts). Xen2 is one of a very few old-school turn-based games in development now - let's not turn them away from it.

 Seeing as xen2 is reasonably similar to xen1, you would think that many lessons had been learnt from xen1 which would have cut the development time dramatically. I never really minded if xen2 was to be a more refined and feature-packed version of xen1 (with a better ending).

Alien: your passion is good, and your English is fine! But there are always going to be different viewpoints; neither is right or wrong really. It's really Chrisses decision and he will have to live or die by it. There was nothing wrong with the way he went about xen1, so why not do it with zen2 (that is release rough, refine later)? As long as players are aware this is his strategy then I think all will cope.

 

Not necessarily, I'm around 18 myself. Not all of us are as impatient as the general stereotype labels us as. I actually really like some of the old-school design that comes from games like this. The Firaxis Xcom games, while great, cut out I lot of the gameplay that I liked from Xenonauts and the ordinal Xcoms. It just feels really restricting to have your soldiers automatically assigned a class, can only bring 1 item to a mission for most of the game, and cannot do basic things like shooting first then moving or being able to shoot anything on the map. My favorite thing about Xenonauts is how free it felt in comparison and how little it holds your hand at the start of the game. 

I think Chris did learn from the lessons that had been learned when he developed Xen 1; I just think that he made different mistakes than he did before. I do agree with Chris that it should be released publicly when it is possible to play the game all the way through without many game breaking bugs or major workarounds. It would be a better first impression than releasing it earlier, but I also agree with you that a public release in the next few months would be great. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was kind of thinking of the younger generation (<18). They have short attention spans and move on to "the next thing" rather quickly. If we lose the younger gen, this type of game may not exist in the future.

The concept of xen2 is similar to xen1 - it's not really like everything had to be totally re-written. I don't think it was a good idea to start off with a single base model anyway, but I suppose he wanted to do something a little different to xen1 for fear of people saying it was too similar. The premise of xen1 and even UFO:Enemy Unknown was good to start with. If Xenonauts lacks anything for me, it's alien "weirdness".

Oh - and General Burt Reynolds from xen 1 it seems... :)

 

Every xcom game has to have a General Burt.

Edited by ooey
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...