Development Updates?

Christmas holidays, they probably just came back

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This.
Besides all legitimate criticism, people tend to forget to be fair.

@FS
Your turn!

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It’s true that online communities can be cruel. Anonymity does that to people.

However, the route of - well, let’s be honest - basically zero communication, isn’t working out and to me doesn’t show any faith in us as a playerbase. We’re in [current year] where the industry standard is now to dish out weekly updates, or biweekly and so on. Actual regular information. A portion of the backlash would be avoided without radio silence too.

@KaelusVonSestiaf is right. It doesn’t need to be anything big. A tweet here and there, I can guarentee those get posted on the subreddit and people appreciate the insight. People might react bitterly, but it IS better than nothing which is the current treatment. And no offense, but I don’t buy the idea that creating regular blogposts is a hard affair unless you’re trying to make them more grandiose than they need to be. Unless there are strict guidelines that someone higher up has ordered and Fat Shark is merely abiding by them.

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Help me with this one. Because I honestly don’t understand it on a fundamental level. What do I need development updates for? The game itself, the gameplay, it doesn’t change if there is developer communication or not. The game is as good or as bad with or without communication notes. If there is an actual update I will see it anyways because of the automated update process and the Steam download.

Also looking at all the decisions made, the changes to the game and the stuff added it is very clear that Fatshark reads feedback and reacts to it. Nearly all additions have at one point been requested by the community. So it is obvious that the feedback is not ignored.

Is this some kind of weird notice me senpai? Some scream for recognition? Why the needy behaviour? If I like the game I play it, if not not. Developer communication doesn’t change anything on this.

I honestly can’t believe I’m reading this.
Of course communication with the devs is a good bloody thing, specially with a game that has such a slow, glacial pace in development and patching process. When there’s gaps in content of 8 months, when there’s 2 months inbetween getting patches with bugfixes, communication with the devs can only lead to good things.

It’s not needy behavior, it’s the very simple thing that when the developers do not say a word on how things are going for months, the community will obviously feel ignored, they will feel like nothing is happening, they will feel like the game is not progressing, the bugs are not getting fixed, the balance issues are not being addressed, new content is not being created, the game is abandoned.
This is what happens when there are glaring issues and not a single word from the devs saying “We’re working on it, might take some time.” You keep playing, the weeks go by, people keep complaining about it and no one can even say for sure that FS heard these complaints or that they think the complaints are valid or anything. Same with content drought.

Communication with the community can be key for the good health of a game. It keeps the community engaged, it keeps them aware that something is a bug or not, it keeps them aware that it’ll get fixed, it lets them know what to look forward to in content and fixes, it keeps them hopeful, it keeps them at ease that FS isn’t abandoning vermintide to develop a new game as a good bloody amount of the community is already theorizing thanks to the radio silence and slow development process. Which is absolutely ridiculous, but that’s how bad the radio silence has gotten.

All of these things can help keep the players interested and hopeful, which helps player retention and game health.

For the record, I can understand part of the reason for FS to be so quiet. The community is actively hostile and toxic, every single announcement no matter how big or small gets plagued with hate comments for no reason. No matter what they do, a good chunk of the community is ready to throw garbage at them because they ‘ruined the game’.
But I still believe small bits of communication inbetween the big announcements to keep the community in the loop will go a long way.

And in any case I still can’t believe someone out there thinks asking for better communication with the devs is ‘needy’ or unnecessary like damn.

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Like I said. I don’t understand it on a fundamental level. I’m a gamer. I am here to PLAY this game, NOW. Why do the developers have to tell me: “Yea, there is this bug and we are fixing it.” I mean i will see the result as soon as the game starts downloading something. The same can be said for content. It just is weird that people say they enjoy PLAYING the game more for something which actually happens OUTSIDE of the game.

What would have changed if Fasthark had said every day after WoM: “There are bugs. We are working on it.” Nothing inside the game until the bugs actually have been fixed which we had then seen. It just seems as a very redundant process to me.

And like said. We get regular updates. For some they make take a bit to long. But you can easily seen that the game is not abondoned and that they are working on it. They don’t need to tell me the obvious things. It is like walking down the river with someone and he tells me: “Hey look, we are walking down a river.” Technically, it isn’t wrong. But is not necessary either.

Also for the record. I did not say that it is not a good thing. I just wonder why people behave like it should be mandatory if the result stays identical. It will be worked on or not be worked on independent from developer communication. Even if they abandoned the game, it would still be “I like this game. I play it.” or “I don’t like this game. I don’t play it.” Or are there really people like “I don’t like this game but I will play it because the developer said xyz will happen.” ? Like the question is serious. Are people really playing something they don’t like? I mean if the changes happen I can still decide to try out, even if I got no further message for it.
Also for the record. If something has been changes, it should be documented.

Let’s say you follow a certain sports team, you’re a fan of this team and you watch every game this team plays. Now, would you say that you’re a fan to only watch the games and nothing else? Or would you also like to learn more of all the actions happening around that team; actions that are off field like upcoming trades, ongoing injuries etc.? I guess you’d appreciate any communication that stirs up hype (big name player set to come?!) or triggers dismay (oh no, he tore his ACL?!).

I would disagree and say: Fatshark earned all the hateful tidbits accompanying recent crumbs of news/communication. There’s no vocal majority left over that would defend Fatshark’s statements on reddit or the steam forums. Most people, who are around long enough to do so, probably feel estranged by the months-long radio silence, too. I have no animosities against WoM, I played Weaves, completed all the related challenges and got to enjoy the post-1.6 state of the game. But currently, I’d never want to actively argue against the unreasonable hate again. I’m more in the state of mind of reading the ‘communication’ coming from Fatshark and then feeling kinda embarrassed by their clumsiness.

Developers actively shape their game’s community and, accordingly, the kind of feedback they get from this community. Fatshark have to buckle up, swallow pride, grow a pair or do whatever necessary to overcome this unwelcoming atmosphere in all the forums that they have helped to foster in the first place.

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I basically feel that gaming communities in general present themselves as pretty entitled. Somebody always wants bugfixes, and someone else wants some specific balance change (and somebody else usually wants the opposite changed as well), and they all want it now. And no matter how fast and accurate a gaming company responds, it’s never enough. All this is probably caused because modern games are designed (and expected to be designed) in such a way that they require constant updates. Gaming companies in general try to keep up with the unsatisfiable fanbase. Often by running their own people into the ground with unreasonable workhours. I find myself really disliking this phenomenon. I really can not blame Fatshark for not trying to keep up with an unsatisfiable demand, and giving their employees christmas breaks, and so on.

Having said all that, however, I also can not say I feel Fatshark’s communication is perfect. I don’t want to demand speedy updates. Let them take as long as they need. (Not exactly a life or death thing, videogames…) But a simple acknowledgement of feedback or issues would be nice. Just knowing you’re not just shouting into an empty well, so to say. And preferably not a completely empy “We read your feedback and we’re working on it.”, but rather a more concrete “We know BW still isn’t where she needs to be, so we’re testing some tweaks internally right now.” or a “We are trying to fix bug X for the next update, but so far we haven’t found the perfect solution yet.”, if possible. Or a simple reply in a feedback thread asking for some clarification of somebody’s point of view or something once in a while, to show the information reached a developer, that would be the absolutely best thing ever. I’m pretty sure the Vermintide fanbase would respond very positively on these things, and people would be more understanding and complaining a lot less as a result.

Well, except for Reddit, off course. But if anybody has the communication skills to make bloody Reddit happy, their talents are probably better spent fixing a political crisis or 3 in the middle east rather than developing videogames.

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To play? The forum is for stay in touch with community and developers.

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Ah, man, you expressed things so much better than I could’ve. Completely agree with everything in your post.

Though if you think reddit is bad, steer clear of the steam forums.

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I agree in general (if I see one more person complain about how overwatch’s monthly updates aren’t actually monthly I might go insane), though I think there’s a point where it legitimately is just not enough.

Fatshark is a decently large company, and they update at about the same pace (probably worse actually) as the mordhau team (which is somewhere around 10 people).

I think frustration about the insanely slow dev speed and lack of communication is fair, even if people can get a bit hysterical. As over the top as some people on reddit can be, I think it’s hard to disagree with a lot of their complaints. Steam forums on the other hand, I’m not quite sure what game those people are playing half the time.

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This sums up a lot of my thoughts, and I don’t think criticism leveled at Fatshark is unwarranted or undeserved as there are definitely issues that should be addressed, communication being one of them; though I feel they are somewhat in a rock and a hard place where if they communicate and something goes sideways they are criticized, but if they don’t communicate, they are also criticized. I can’t imagine this is a fun situation for them to be in; though the complaints players have do merit addressing in some instances.

I feel Fatshark has this very unique situation of having a very small, dedicated playerbase and close-knit community structure, and the developers present themselves as very human vs corporate, which can present unique communication challenges. For a bunch of us, this might be the only game we’re super invested in, and the feedback here speaks volumes of the passion of the playerbase (and the fact you can run into this players in game as well quite frequently), but it is somewhat…untapped (or perhaps overly-tapped—we give a lot of feedback!)?

I feel they try their best, of course, but can’t help but wonder if there’s a lot of red tape inhibiting the communication process that we don’t know about.

Well, except for Reddit, off course. But if anybody has the communication skills to make bloody Reddit happy, their talents are probably better spent fixing a political crisis or 3 in the middle east rather than developing videogames.

Ha, I moderate the Reddit. Can confirm it’s a handful, but it gives a good pulse on the attitudes about the game surrounding the particular subset of users who post there. :stuck_out_tongue:

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Holy smoke I’m dumbfounded by where we’re at. Communication with customers is EVERYTHING. I mean, literally everything to do with a good relationship with your customers.

In the industry I work in (chef) failing to communicate with customers is absolutely guaranteed to trigger abuse, aggressive behaviour and downright violence in the worst cases.

EVERY SINGLE TRAINING course I’ve EVER been on for dealing with customer complaints or confrontation has been to;

1)Communicate early and often. If there is a problem communicate early and often with your customers. Often. Often. Don’t let people forget you are there for them.
2)Keep touching base with the customers to let them know we haven’t forgotten about them at all. Make them feel important to you. They might not be important and you might hate them, but make them FEEL important.
3) DELIVER anything we promise, at the expense of other things.

EVERYONE HERE has experienced this. Going out for a meal and having something go wrong and be put right by excellent communication and action, or something go wrong and then go really wrong by being left to stew in your own juices and get angrier by the minute while everyone around you gets their dinner and you are just ignored like a piece of filth on the floor.

And for those people who are saying that somehow an online community is vitriolic and angry and downright nasty, it is far removed from being face to face with someone who you have delayed their meal, possibly ruined their evening, given them six pints and then had to put up with them and their family IN YOUR FACE threatening to kick the living snot out of you.

TLDR;
STOP being so reticent FS, and just … PLEASE… work out how to mirror your development pace to your social media presence. It is painful to be a customer of FS at the moment, and this is PC, XBOX and PS4 all wrapped up into one miserable bunch…

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Guys. This is old as hell. just let it go, Fatshark wont change. the only solution would be if FS just sell the entire stuff to a studio which developed warhammer games with success and have the actual manpower and the knowledge to develop a game like this.

Sadly they failed the test so many times. just see the bugreports, half a year old bugs are in the game with acknowledged status. They said that they need money for paying the bills… With contents like WoM after the release: mostly negative feedback on steam, then the began to roll back the game before 2.0. Still not that much sell.

So in this case - like they wrote that they need to pay the bills (lol, a game developer company begs for money to be able to pay the bills? guys, you are doing something very wrong) they should present stuff what the community likes. Not a bunch of people who want something in the game. They should have listened a long time ago. But ego didnt allow them to please the players (they source of money).

They began to act like they care, but we can see, they care little. Lies, promises, delays, poor contents. This is why i wont add a single euro for the well being of a team which cares little. I gave a lot of bugreports. Acknowledged the most of them, but they are still int the game. I took the time to reproduce the bugs, provided evidence many times, and no solution, this bug for example well known since ages.

This is the downfall Im afraid, I’m just sad because I have a feeling that they will pull the game down too. See War of the Roses.

There were a few instances in the WoM beta, where we had a dev chime in, when a project/task/whatever of his was in question.
There was a question for origin or a need for clarification and we got a small discussion in a 3-5 post long thread, where we got what we wanted and/or the dev got some perspective too. There was no conflict in either one. Sometimes raw tech lingo is better and then the forum can translate it to the ones not understanding and doesn’t need to be dumbed down by the dev so that Hedge can post it.
This is what I would like to have more of.
The dev can explain the things we always would like to know, because they are the key to UNDERSTANDING it:

  • Why that particular thing is seen as necessary by FS.
  • How they intend to do it.
  • Preferably all this BEFORE the majority of the work is done, or WHILE it’s being done. Sometimes timely input can give perspective to the dev, especially if he doesn’t play the game…
    No major time investment is expected here, this can be done on a coffe break or while having a snack or whatever opportunity presents itself.
    NOBODY is working 8-12 hours without some opportunity for this…
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Exactly my thoughts. This is what I was getting at. I feel like the amount of effort that would go into tiny updates/acknowledgements cant often be overestimated. I dont expect the world from Fatshark and for them to provide me with a detailed change log of all actions they are taking, would just be nice to have some form of communication now and again.

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The Vermintide subreddit is comprised of many different fans of the game and I don’t think they’re unreasonable to be unhappy. There are defenders of FS there too. And as it stands, I think that Deep Rock Galactic’s community is mostly happy. And they actively communicate with the players and very regularly update the game.

I’ve got mixed feelings about calling gamers entitled. I don’t find gamers entitled specifically, but I think that their/our demands are often very unrealistic, which you touched upon. It’s important to remember that Fat Shark is in Sweden, which is a good place for worker’s rights and by comparison most other games are made in places in the world such as America where this sadly is not the case. The industry standard as a whole is to encourage HORRIBLE crunch time and I don’t think there are any unions at all to enforce some kind of reasonable treatment. So, the videogame industry is pretty effed and has been through its entire existence. Gamers’ demands reflect this wider industry problem of expecting developers to put in long hours.

I believe Hedge(?) commented on what it was like working at Fat Shark, saying he loved it because you had good hours and were treated well. And that’s genuinely heartwarming to hear, I really don’t want that to change. Everyone should have a job they enjoy and in a safe environment.

But company hours don’t need to change to accomodate what us as a community as a whole are actually asking for. I mean, we know Fat Shark can patch things faster than they do (they stated they prefer one big patch over smaller pieces of dough), and the lack of communication is just a cherry on top of all the community grievances making most everyone feel that they’re getting ignored.

Because the result isn’t identical? It’s actively harming the community. Well, what little there is left of it.

Just feel the need to chime in here and note that Mordhau actually has the same issue here with Fat Shark, the lack of communication was very bad for the game and still is. During the content drought before the Invasion gamemode was added a lot of players spouted that the devs had abandoned the game. They got their money and yeeted out of there. That turned out to not be the case obviously, but the problem just wouldn’t have been there if they communicated with their players!

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WHERE IS PATCHIE?! :rofl:

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Definitely, though they’re a bit better these days from what I know. There’s also only a dozen or so of them, which I think excuses stuff like that somewhat. They’re not perfect or even close, I just wanted to use a different example to deep rock lol, and mordhau is closer graphically to vt.

I was mostly just using them to show how insanely slow patches come.

Communication is a top priority.
I understand the fact most of the players seem entitled but that’s the price Devs must pay since when they decide to use them as paytesters instead on using normal playtesting.
Nowadays Gaming studios are just selling advanced betas at the Day1 so they can save work, money and let the players who payed the game do the dirty work of testing the builds, so they can fix the bugs and balance the gameplay on the run.

Either devs decide to use a real playtesting method or they must communicate with their playerbase even if many players are entitled kids . You cannot have your cake and eat it.

Poor communication followed by gameplay changes made by some ESK because “people must play the game in the way I want” are a recipe for disaster.

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