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Thread: Feedback for The Fun Pimps on Alpha 17

  1. #31
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    Hey Everybody,

    Wow! Lots of replies! Thanks for all the great discussion! And a HUGE thanks to our Moderators and Fun Pimp Staff who have taken the time to read and reply!! Thank you so much for taking the time to read all my post and give some feedback.

    I know that some of my post has an 'us' versus 'you' kind of language, but I just want to reiterate that in no way am I trying to make any kind of personal attack, and that the purposes of these posts are purely to present a point of view which I hope will help the Fun Pimps in their development endeavors. I have nothing but respect for how hard all these guys work, and I wouldn't bother writing these if I didn't care about the awesome game they've created. You guys are awesome. Thanks again for reading and replying to this thread.

    Also, this reply ran a bit long, so I'll have to post the second part to it in another reply post. Please forgive me for double posting but it wouldn't let me post something this long.

    So, with all that said, I want post a bit of a rebuttal to some of the counterarguments here. Here are the two main ones I've seen:

    1) The nerfs and changes have been done in order to achieve acceptable zombie behavior.

    I can agree, to an extent, that this kind of modification is necessary. Yes, zombies being able to jump reasonable distances seems warranted. And yes, zombies going into a 'berserk' mode and attacking things around them if they can't reach you also seems appropriate as well. Giving zombies the ability to dig down also, yes, seems like a thing a zombie should reasonably be able to do. And yes, being able to attack storage boxes seems completely reasonable.

    However, this behavior modification has gone to some lengths that I think far surpass what reasonable zombies could do. For example, they can sense you through solid objects, regardless of distance - a sense that cannot be fooled by any sort of decoy. They can also psychically detect the shortest route into your base. They can also smash stone with their bare hands. And, at full health they can fall any distance and survive.

    So, I wouldn't so much have a problem with zombies digging, but I would expect they would do the same damage to stone as my character would do to stone with their bare fists. But, since the desired behavior is to oust players from their subterranean lairs, the zombies behavior includes a massive boost to damage to objects. This seems inconsistent because, despite their ability to do massive damage to blocks they have had no damage boost to players. Also, it seems inconsistent with player expectations. A player expects an unarmed humanoid to break rocks at the same rate at which their character does (their character also being an unarmed humanoid).

    The fact that a zombie, at full health, can survive a fall of any distance seems at odds with the goal of zombies achieving acceptable behavior. If I was in Halo, and I saw a grunt fall from the top of the map onto the ground, and it didn't die, I would instantly assume that was a glitch or oversight. Why would I not assume that same thing for 7 Days to Die? It seems inconsistent with the rules that the player is presented with.

    In short, I'm not criticizing all the updates that have been made to the zeds. Certainly giving them the ability to leap, dig and attack storage boxes seems completely reasonable. But it also seems like a number of abilities have been massively improved solely for the purposes of overcoming obstacles the players might set up.

    I want to talk about how it's okay for zombies to be stupid and flawed. If the developers create an AI which the players can manipulate and take advantage of, well, that's just humans being humans.

    For example, when catching lobsters, fishermen lower a crate into the ocean with a special opening. Lobsters crawl in to get the bait but can't get out, at which point the crate is hauled up. Catching the lobsters requires ZERO effort on behalf of the fishermen once the trap is laid. In fact, lost traps can even continue to kill, as the lobsters inside will die, which will attract other animals to get inside, and die, and so on and so on. All with zero effort from the fishermen who laid the trap to begin with. Is this an exploit? Are the fishermen abusing broken lobster A.I.? No, this is simply humans being humans in our problem solving. We look for patterns and use them to our advantage. No matter how sophisticated your A.I. gets, people will always do this.

    The same is true when seeking places of shelter. When you're being stalked by a sabertooth tiger and you get into a cave and close up most of the entrance with large rocks, you've put yourself in a position where that threat cannot harm you anymore - which was your goal to begin with. You're literally exploiting the fact that creatures cannot penetrate rock, which humans have done forever. But in 7 Days to Die, the zeds are given the ability to specifically circumvent that strategy, completely ignoring the reality of that situation, which is inconsistent with how the zeds are portrayed.

    What I'm trying to convey through my argument here is, updating the zombie's A.I. so it can do new things is fine, but in some cases it has far surpassed what a reasonable zombie-survivalist might expect. In specific, the zeds have adapted to counter certain player strategies, but not others. Like the fact the zeds can tunnel through stone, but don't do absolutely absurd amounts of melee damage. Or the fact that no single fall can kill a full health zombie. I am trying to say that I find the zombie's behavior very inconsistent given that they are clearly identified as 'zombies'.

    I would go one step further to say that these inconsistencies of behavior have not been included out of any desire to achieve an 'ideal' behavior for a zombie, but rather are included specifically to thwart certain player strategies.

    (continued below)

  2. #32
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    2) Strategies that involve zero effort during Horde nights are unacceptable.

    So, this counterargument is saying that the developers do NOT want a situation where surviving the 7th-Day Horde requires zero effort on behalf of the player. They also say that, specifically, they want to avoid counters to the Horde that require zero maintenance, even if it has taken effort to set up.

    I'd say that both of these concepts are in error, because it overlooks one key fact: the player already always expends effort when they choose how to deal with the Horde.

    So, whether the player is expending almost no effort, or all the effort, they ARE, in-fact, dealing with the 7th-Day horde. How? By making choices on how to handle the event. They ARE expending effort, even if that effort is something as simple as "I climb that radio mast and hide at the top all night." This counterargument would argue that this strategy involves little to no effort and is therefore bad. However, I'd say even the current 'successful builds' to overcome the hordes, be it with traps, cages, platforms, etc. are all designed to REDUCE effort on behalf of the player. Why penalize the player if they successfully reduce the amount of effort to zero?

    The point is, even a player who elects to literally do NOTHING during the 7th-Day horde is making a CHOICE on how they deal with it. And that is what makes the situation so interesting as a player. We can have a choice. We can (or could)...
    -Fight them head on
    -Make an obstacle course of traps
    -Watch our pit trap kill them all
    -Take a 20 minute break from the game as we sit in our underground bunker
    -Go for a midnight drive on our motorbike while listening to some Timecop1983
    -Hide on top of a gas station using molotov cocktails we made
    -Get hit a bunch, fall on the ground and die for 20 minutes

    That last choice, simply dying, is one that absolutely requires no effort on behalf of the player. Even if you include something to penalize them, the player always, ALWAYS has an option to expend no effort whatsoever on the Horde, so long as they are prepared to pay the requisite cost (in this case, time spent dealing with death penalties). Why is dying over and over a mechanically acceptable method of dealing with the Horde, but preparing something ahead of time is penalized? The player is still pays the cost for their 'zero effort' strategy, one is simply spent ahead of time while the other is spent after.

    No matter what the player chooses, the player IS dealing with the 7th-Day Horde event; they are seeing an event and taking the action which they feel is appropriate. And being given that choice is a huge part of what makes the event so interesting and entertaining for the player.

    Having a lot of choices is, for example, one of the thing players love about tabletop games. They love that they don't HAVE to fight their enemies straight on. They can negotiate with them, lure them into traps, stealthily go around them, trick one enemy into fighting another, turn on the party and join the enemies, etc. Just because a group of players 'trivializes' an encounter doesn't mean the Dungeon Master (DM) has run a bad encounter. It means that the DM gave their players the freedom to reasonably handle the situation instead of railroading them on to one particular course of action.

    That's my criticism with the concept that Hordes MUST take effort. I feel the game is railroading me. That it's telling me "THIS is how we want you to deal with this situation." Again, all weapons, powerups, ammo types, armor, they work great against zombies, but pit traps, concrete barriers and hiding don't because... you are being railroaded into a combat situation.

    I feel like, I used to have the freedom to deal with the zombies in a lot of ways. Now, I have to either look up exploits, follow someone elses build design, or play the game in a way that I don't really enjoy. All because the 'DM' wants me to expend my effort on the Horde in what they feel is the 'appropriate' manner. They are removing my choice and supplanting it with one of their own. Not very fun if you ask me.

    My final words on this topic to the developers would be this: It's OKAY if players come up with something that trivializes your Horde encounter. If pit traps kill them with no effort, that's okay, because the player chose that, put the time and effort in to make that. Players will literally always have the option of putting in zero effort during a horde (by dying) - they will just deal with it later. To restrict players from exploring the option of 'zero effort' defenses is a futile effort that only stymies the current player's creativity.

    If the developer's goal is a game that forces a combat situation, that's fine, but I think the game would benefit if it set that up more clearly and directly.


    Anyways, those are my rebuttals to the two main counterarguments I've heard. Again, I want to reiterate the respect I have for the staff and apologize if any of my post came off as confrontational. I am trying to confront something I see as a problem, but I hope I haven't given any offense in the process of doing so. Thanks so much for reading.

  3. #33
    Reconstructionist stasis78's Avatar
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    Reading this thread made me realize how good TFP are at making a game and fixing exploits.

    I salute them for paying attention to their game and actually giving a f*** about it.

  4. #34
    Zombie Hunter OnlyMeiya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jedo View Post
    Except it likely is the truth for a good number of people.
    A good number of people if you take their collective IQ and turn it into electricity, could probably toast a slice of bread lightly.

    Reading this thread made me realize how good TFP are at making a game and fixing exploits.

    I salute them for paying attention to their game and actually giving a f*** about it.
    If only they gave any attention to multiplayer and pvp issues, till then I have to disagree honestly.

  5. #35
    Colony Founder Jedo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OnlyMeiya View Post
    A good number of people if you take their collective IQ and turn it into electricity, could probably toast a slice of bread lightly.

    If only they gave any attention to multiplayer and pvp issues, till then I have to disagree honestly.
    I take it that you are part of that collective? Both of these responses basically were non sequiturs.

  6. #36
    Reconstructionist stasis78's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OnlyMeiya View Post
    A good number of people if you take their collective IQ and turn it into electricity, could probably toast a slice of bread lightly.



    If only they gave any attention to multiplayer and pvp issues, till then I have to disagree honestly.
    Already stated fact that they are addressing issues.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Honestly if you are playing without a server mod that is on you. Multiplayer issues and PvP issues are solved problems already. CPM can create unlimited advanced claims for PVE and restore a16 claims for PVP

  7. #37
    Super Moderator Roland's Avatar
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    I have never ever heard once during developer discussions a single developer say, “We gotta oust people from playing underground”. Again the OP makes the faulty assumption that the devs are out to stop the players from playing a certain way which is not true. As changes are made there will be old strategies that become unviable but new strategies will be found. That is indeed a major source of fun for certain individuals: to experiment with different designs and try things out.

    Instead of complaining that underground bases no longer are viable because the devs don’t want players playing underground, try going underground and experimenting to see what works. Or wait until someone else does and posts it and the copy what they do.

    If the devs want anything it is that players will rise to the challenge and be creative in finding new designs rather than bemoaning that old exploits no longer are viable.

  8. #38
    Refugee Lanadon Conners's Avatar
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    A friend of mine who works in the Gaming industry once told me that putting out a new video game is much akin to tossing a basketball off the Empire State Building and trying to hit a basket 103 floors down. As the Devs toss basketballs off the roof, they watch how the wind currents affect the drop, obstacles in the way down, listen to folks watching from the windows and make changes to their next release (patch/update/version) trying to get closer to their target goal. The roar of bystanders trying to tell them that they are standing in the wrong place, not putting enough backspin on the ball or that the devs should be using a different type of ball can be deafening and disheartening at times; but they have their target goal. They take notes, make observations and try again.


    All that to say, just because there was something you liked in an earlier version that was changed, removed, altered does not mean that it wont reappear closer to the final product and if there is something you absolutely hate in the current version, doesn't mean it will be there in the final cut. This is still Testing Phase, so folks, keep testing, reporting bugs and giving the devs the feedback they need. Don't expect them to respond to everything but also rest assured their pay checks are linked to the success of the final product so they are trying to hit that Basket far below.. they are going to try many variables before locking anything in. I would guess that folks who were playing on open test release would say that A17 looks and plays like a totally different game from back then.

  9. #39
    Scavenger Venemox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roland View Post
    I have never ever heard once during developer discussions a single developer say, “We gotta oust people from playing underground”...
    Actions speak louder than words. No one may have said “We gotta oust people from playing underground”, but they still did it anyway.

    As far as the rest goes, I assume TFP is still trying to sell new copies of this game. That means new players. How intuitive is the current Zombie AI to someone with 0 hours of game time vs. 1500, or more? Is it intuitive that Zeds can ignore fall damge? Bash through steel blocks in a matter of seconds without damaging their arms/hands? Sense the player form any distance, and through obstacles? Eat machine gun bullets like candy?

    Can we expect success on their first day 7 horde? Probably not, and I'm not arguing we should. However, can they learn from that and succeed on their second, or third, attempt? Without looking up AI exploits, build guides, or any other external information?

    I think the OP has the right gist of things. The current iteration of zombies has so evolved past the pop culture references that Geroge Romero started perhaps a new enemy should star in this series. I reccomend "7 Days to Die: Skynet Attacks".

    As far as needing to do repairs after Horde Night goes, all you really need is Rule 1: Cardio and a Bike. A mining helmet is nice, but far from necessary. Kite, kite, kite! All prep work and no after horde maintenance.

    Of course, on a persistent server, you could just log out for Horde Night. Or in SP, you can abuse the fact Zeds don't get 'remembered' when you quit and come back.

  10. #40
    QA Tester unholyjoe's Avatar
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    nope, Roland 100% is correct... no Dev has said or lead anybody to that conclusion.

    what is happening is game mechanics and features that were discussed ages ago are being tested and or added or subtracted.

    why the hell would we have underground bunkers, a few caves large underground attachments to poi houses and so forth if they didnt want us going underground and mining... underground is as much a survival mechanic as living above ground.

  11. #41
    Zombie Hunter OnlyMeiya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jedo View Post
    I take it that you are part of that collective? Both of these responses basically were non sequiturs.
    Stay around and deal with the community for about 5 years as I have, you've only been less than a year little one, you were just taking a jab at me for lulls I'm sure because I said something so mean didn't I? rofl neither comment was a non sequitur but I'll give you a brownie point for trying to use a big word. Careful not to bite your tongue on it though.

    (Seriously just observe the behavior of some of these people, they complain about some of the most inane things and I have watched live streams of players literally that just are utterly terrible at the game and don't know what they're doing )

    Honestly if you are playing without a server mod that is on you. Multiplayer issues and PvP issues are solved problems already. CPM can create unlimited advanced claims for PVE and restore a16 claims for PVP
    and where can I find this mod, I usually don't mod and like to play the game as it was intended, but the recent LCB changes destroys multiplayer.
    Last edited by OnlyMeiya; 4 Weeks Ago at 05:46 PM.

  12. #42
    Colony Founder Jedo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OnlyMeiya View Post
    Stay around and deal with the community for about 5 years as I have, you've only been less than a year little one, you were just taking a jab at me for lulls I'm sure because I said something so mean didn't I? rofl neither comment was a non sequitur but I'll give you a brownie point for trying to use a big word. Careful not to bite your tongue on it though.

    (Seriously just observe the behavior of some of these people, they complain about some of the most inane things and I have watched live streams of players literally that just are utterly terrible at the game and don't know what they're doing )
    You join date is one year sooner than mine, and I lurked before making a profile. (I can only assume that you did as well.) As for the rest, no lolz and not because of some "mean comment." Your statements were just wrong. (Small enough words for you?)

    I know people say inane things and complain simply because they are lazy (not necessarily directing that to this thread). It is frustrating. Interestingly, it happens on both sides of the aisle.

  13. #43
    Super Moderator Roland's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Venemox View Post
    Actions speak louder than words. No one may have said “We gotta oust people from playing underground”, but they still did it anyway.
    All you are exposing is your own lack of creativity. I promise you that those who find it fun to adapt and innovate will find ways to continue playing underground. Some may discover cheap exploits that feel kind of cheaty but others will find interesting strategies. And then they will post their strategies and people like you will learn that not everyone was ousted and when people like you copy those methods that others find then you’ll finally realize that the devs didn’t oust anyone from the underworld simply by making zombies dig.

    Their actions are speaking and what they are saying is that the behavior of the enemies in the game are meant to be threatening in every biome but just like the devs still do want you to play the game in the forest biome even though zombies can go there they also want you to play underground even though the zombies can go there too.

    If you can’t figure out how to do it or if solving such puzzles is not fun for you be patient because eventually there will be instructions provided by those who do like to adapt and overcome.

    I would not be surprised if by A18 it will almost universally be held that surviving underground even with digging zombies is....”too easy”.

  14. #44
    Refugee Lanadon Conners's Avatar
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    In the 2 games I have played thus far (one in Nav and one Ran gen) both of my bases have been underground. With Cement and rebar so abundant at construction sites in A17 (and there is literally a TON of it at the "Gracie POI") , I was standing on the top of a concrete tower by day 14 that lead into my bases by ladder. Sure I have to replace layers of wood and metal spikes after a Horde night, but thus far, only once have they gotten within reach of my tower wall and I find that If I am standing on top of my tower blasting away, the Z's have no reason to dig.

    Dukes from treasure maps has let me snag a few Shotgun turrets and I am working on a second layer of concrete (to be reinforced later when I can make steel) and adding barbed wire and even more spikes. They upped their Offensive game so I upped my Defense. I don't mind chopping trees and harvesting iron scrap the day after a horde night because it means I survived another week.


    Only having seen the changes from A16 to A17 (all of which I too am not crazy about but endure), I am curious to see what changes await in A18 and beyond and what strategies the more experienced players develop to counter what is being thrown at us.

    Feels like we went from facing "Walking Dead" Z's in A16 and found ourselves in Resident Evil Z's in A17.

  15. #45
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    I see we still going at it with digging zombies. It isn't like they are a new thing and all. We used to have them so it isn't a shock they brought them back. I do believe I remember them saying they would bring them back when they had more time to work with them or something like that. I think they will get even better the more they work on them.

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