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Thread: A deep appreciation that the pimps aren't afraid to scrap and rebuild a game system

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    A deep appreciation that the pimps aren't afraid to scrap and rebuild a game system

    I've played since a11.5 and have seen a lot of changes over the years. Some I liked, some I hated, but what I absolutely love about the pimps is that they are not afraid to scrap an entire system that they worked hard to build because the players and devs felt it wasn't good enough. I just watched some preview videos for a18 and I see the skill system has been redone yet again. I might like it, I might not, but it takes serious dedication to create something new after all the work they've already put into the last few iterations. So, despite my whining about various mechanics, the pimps are absolute studs. Just thought I'd share.

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    Colony Founder Scyris's Avatar
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    But this is sadly also why the game hasn't really gone anywhere in years, A18 might be the first time in a loooong time its actually starting to go somewhere, assuming they don't redo the skill system yet again in a19.

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    Community Moderator SylenThunder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scyris View Post
    But this is sadly also why the game hasn't really gone anywhere in years, A18 might be the first time in a loooong time its actually starting to go somewhere, assuming they don't redo the skill system yet again in a19.
    Don't forget that TFP is breaking ground that no other game has ventured across. And even after years in development, none other has attempted. Basically every aspect of the game they are having to build from scratch. They have had a vision on how they want things to work from the beginning, and now some of the systems are finally starting to fall into that idea.

    A17 was actually the biggest step towards a vision they have been discussing in depth since at least a10. I know there were many struggles about how to implement the restrictions on inventory, and am aware of some of the many processes they considered, but deemed inadequate or over-encumbering. The buff system has been much discussed as well as it's changed over the years.

    Some of the changes that finally fell into place were due to changes in the Unity core, and some were just then finding a good method for linking different systems together in a way that worked.

    You guys seem to forget that this is the Alpha phase of development. It's completely acceptable (and expected) that systems will be completely re-worked, trashed, created, changed, ect. This is the nature of the Alpha development phase.

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    Reconstructionist Khulkhuum's Avatar
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    I am glad TFP decided to put time and effort on features they deem worthy of their time. It would be far less good if they went with what the players wanted, drenching themselves in guilt and forcing themselves to make a game they are not really into. They would quickly lose their motivation and stop working on this game, trying again with a new one.

    7DTD would be another abandoned product, because there were too many problems, the vision strayed too far away from what was created and/or people felt hopeless for making any good improvements.

    Don't get me wrong, i don't like some of the changes, but i am patient enough to see where all of this goes to. We have a dedicated Dev team and that's a good sign for the future.

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    Tracker OldManBrian's Avatar
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    I hated most of their changes in a17, but now it looks like they're course correcting so well and so much that I might not even need any mods in a18. (Other than the CompoPack of course.)

    I really like that they try things and then aren't afraid to backtrack or try something else when it doesn't pan out. Considering that the game isn't released yet, they are doing exactly what they should be doing to find their feet considering they're pioneering a completely unique gaming experience.

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    Refugee bitmapman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scyris View Post
    But this is sadly also why the game hasn't really gone anywhere in years, A18 might be the first time in a loooong time its actually starting to go somewhere, assuming they don't redo the skill system yet again in a19.
    Did they really "redo" it for A18? What they've shown looks more like a tweaking than a straight up refactoring to me. It's more like they reorganized it in order to facilitate specialization better, but most of the perks and the way the system works on the whole are pretty much the same as before.

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    Colony Founder Katitof's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dex314 View Post
    I've played since a11.5 and have seen a lot of changes over the years. Some I liked, some I hated, but what I absolutely love about the pimps is that they are not afraid to scrap an entire system that they worked hard to build because the players and devs felt it wasn't good enough. I just watched some preview videos for a18 and I see the skill system has been redone yet again. I might like it, I might not, but it takes serious dedication to create something new after all the work they've already put into the last few iterations. So, despite my whining about various mechanics, the pimps are absolute studs. Just thought I'd share.
    All that means is they never had any idea how they would like the game to be up until now.
    Building features update to update is perfectly fine and understandable, scrapping them and making them anew all the time is purest form of lack of direction and long term plan and design.

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    Fun Pimps Staff Gazz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bitmapman View Post
    Did they really "redo" it for A18? What they've shown looks more like a tweaking than a straight up refactoring to me. It's more like they reorganized it in order to facilitate specialization better, but most of the perks and the way the system works on the whole are pretty much the same as before.
    The underlying systems have not changed. This is more of a rebalance, pushing abilities into other buckets.
    Plus adding a lot more abilities to flesh out the systems.

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    Colony Founder meganoth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Katitof View Post
    All that means is they never had any idea how they would like the game to be up until now.
    Building features update to update is perfectly fine and understandable, scrapping them and making them anew all the time is purest form of lack of direction and long term plan and design.
    If game design were something you could plan perfectly ahead, abominations like "Fallout 67", "Simcity" or hundreds of other games that don't really work at release would not exist.

    Your first sentence is absolutely correct. A lot of the details they didn't know and tried to find the best way through experimentation. And "best" doesn't even mean the objectively best, it is just the subjective best they want for their game. For example in their kickstarter they were talking about the player "protecting his farm of chickens" (paraphrased). If they had perfect knowledge what fits and what they can do with the hardware, they probably wouldn't have said this.

    Do you really think you would have had the knowledge 7 years ago that that feature was not important enough now? Or whether to take LBD or a perk system? Or whether ziplines would fit?

    In a speech one of the best game developers of the previous century (I think it was Sid Meier talking about "Civilization") was telling the story of how the first Civ just wasn't feeling right for some time in development and they just didn't know what was wrong and how to fix it. They tried a lot of things until someone had the idea to change some speed value a little bit and suddenly it clicked. The game was fun again. Why didn't Sid know this? How come they needed to experiment and just play around with it?

    You think you are better than the developers of bethesda, EA, or TFP. Are you sure you can live up to that?
    Last edited by meganoth; 07-31-2019 at 01:51 PM.

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    Community Moderator OzHawkeye's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Katitof View Post
    All that means is they never had any idea how they would like the game to be up until now.
    Building features update to update is perfectly fine and understandable, scrapping them and making them anew all the time is purest form of lack of direction and long term plan and design.
    You'd rather they keep a system in place that wasn't doing the job intended for it? Granted, with perfect foresight you could ensure that every system that was started, fulfilled exactly the role it was intended for by the time it was finished, but no-one has perfect foresight.

    I'm with the OP on this one, maybe the game goes Gold later than it otherwise would have because the Pimps were willing to experiment and re-iterate, but the game will be all the better, in the end, for it.

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    Super Moderator Roland's Avatar
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    A lot of studios seem to wait to release their games to Early Access until they only have about a year or two left indev. This means most of the major decisions and possible pathways that could be taken are done and all that is left to do is to polish and add content.

    Everything we’ve experienced over the last years would’ve been done behind closed doors and A17 would’ve been the first version released— still not ready for gold but pretty much at the point where the game will remain as it is until gold. Most brand new players without any knowledge of previous alphas are loving A17. A18 is even more refined, optimized, looks better, and has tons of new content so it will feel like an update that you get from other Early Access titles.

    TFP started their Early Access....early.

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    Colony Founder Pille's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OzHawkeye View Post
    You'd rather they keep a system in place that wasn't doing the job intended for it? Granted, with perfect foresight you could ensure that every system that was started, fulfilled exactly the role it was intended for by the time it was finished, but no-one has perfect foresight.
    I don't think you need perfect foresight to avoid never ending rebuilding. Some obviously wonky systems make me wonder why they were implemented in the first place. They could have known better in some cases, even without being precogs. It's almost as if they would have little experience with such large-scale projects. If I didn't know any better, I would even say that 7days is their first big game and that some of the vicissitudes of development are the result of this circumstance. Also, "Wo gehobelt wird, da fallen Späne" (Good luck translating this german proverb^^).

    To me rebuilding stuff from scratch is ok as long as the end result doesn't suffer from attitudes like 'oh no 7 days is already x years in development, time to finish at any price'. In such cases, time used for reiterations might have been better invested in refinements of existing systems. If I recall correctly, TFP said they would continue to add feature even after the end of the alpha phase. So the possible loss of time due to scraping and reimplementing features is nothing I am really worried about, unlike other things...
    Last edited by Pille; 08-03-2019 at 03:55 AM.

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    one thing i do miss from A16 are the cone like traps that dismembered the legs from regular zombies.

    maybe these could come back but instead of dismembering the legs it could have nails coming out where zombies would get stuck.

    i like the building aspect of this game and love to have more options instead of having to resort to mods.

    IF im going to have to level up by killing zombies...

    then i would go play State of decay 2 or dead rising. where IMHO is more fun to be killing zombies.

    and i just want to shoot zombies then ill go play left for dead and be done with it.

    the building aspect and setting traps for zombies is fun also.

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    Ranger hotpoon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by delukard View Post
    IF im going to have to level up by killing zombies...
    then i would go play State of decay 2 or dead rising. where IMHO is more fun to be killing zombies.
    and i just want to shoot zombies then ill go play left for dead and be done with it.
    the building aspect and setting traps for zombies is fun also.
    ...Or Dying Light.
    The unique selling point of this game is the voxel system without the blocky Minecraft-esque graphics, so I'd agree, I think more focus need to go to the building system. One of the more unique parts of this game is the ability to build a horde base and see how its design and traps hold up. Currently the broken AI that can see through walls and all focus on one block at a time, all but ruins that. If I were the Pimps, fixing that would be priority #1. As you say, there are better games for straight up zombie bashing.

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    It sucks. Just changing everything every alpha for no reason. How about actually improving the features rather than overhauling the levelling system for the 54th time. The game has been in alpha for far too long already.

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