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Re: Preference of beta completeness

#16
Dromeda5, I get a little tickle of a feeling that you may be one of those people who just likes to argue, to be seen as contrarian. In which case, this will be a short conversation.

But I give you the benefit of the doubt to start with, and take your objections seriously.
Dromeda5 wrote:I would certainly agree with 100% that was said. But two years ago. I mean, it makes a lot of sense that investing so much time into a replaceable feature like warp-lanes was clearly a mistake. However, two years after their were pretty much fully implemented, what is the point of such argumentation? Or does anybody think that after two whole years not even warp-lanes were finished? 1) if they are fully finished, which is the obvious bet since they were already pretty finished last time we heard of them, then why the hell would be any waste time to have them? The time-cost is already paid;
If Josh hadn't told us he was ripping out the Limit Theory Script Language (in which, presumably, some or all of the warp rail functionality was implemented), I might agree with you.

But I don't know how much switching from LTSL to Python invalidated the LTSL script code. Maybe not much at all, in which case, sure, if it's in there, leave it.

If the Python code is significantly different though -- which is not an unreasonable guess since it's been how long now since that switchover with no word from Josh? -- and a lot of stuff would have to be pretty much rewritten from scratch, then my comments apply.

I'm assuming a lot of the LTSL script code is no longer valid. That may not be an accurate assumption.
Dromeda5 wrote:2) it seems to me that deep down, the whole argumentation is because you would like planets to rotate and move and you judge the warp-lanes as the main obstacle for that.
Thanks for checking on that. Nope, it's not the only reason -- as I describe above, I'm speculating that the latest period of silence is because it's taking time to rewrite a lot of stuff in Python. If so, then if it were up to me I wouldn't rewrite the warp rails code because I don't think it contributes nearly as much fun as do the other features I listed.

Would I like to see planets rotate and orbit? Absolutely! I've never hid that, while also saying these features would also need to show value for the cost to code them. I've even proposed an alternate way to implement warp rails that could allow for rotation/orbiting.

But your insinuation that this is the "whole" reason for my low assessment of the utility of warp lanes is wrong. In my opinion, they just don't offer nearly as much gameplay bang for the coding time buck as the other features that I listed as higher priority.
Dromeda5 wrote:it amazes me deep into my soul that someone classifies "procedurally generatable ships/stations" in LT as something "could live without if necessary". Those are core things that have defined LT since the beginning.
I think we may have different definitions of what "core" means. ;)

The metric I used for my prioritization is pretty simple: how much does Feature X contribute to what Josh described in the Limit Theory Kickstarter relative to its likely cost-to-implement?

What I took, and take, from that project description as truly being "core" is an extensible sandbox game set in a "living" science fiction universe, in which players will have the freedom to interact with that living, dynamic universe in multiple different ways. I don't see ships and stations being procedurally generated as core to that vision.

That said, Josh did explicitly list ships and stations as being procedurally generatable, so there's some support for your position.

But it's been nearly four years now. If it were me, I would absolutely be prioritizing what has to be implemented to achieve the true core vision and what ought to be added in a post-launch patch.

So are procedurally generatable ships and stations something that "ought" to be in Limit Theory? Sure.

Could I live without them if that's necessary to get an actual v1.0 Limit Theory, containing the features that matter most to the "feel" of the game that Josh described, into the hands of backers sometime in 2017? Yes.

Hence, "Ought To Have But Could Live Without If Necessary."

I think that prioritization is completely defensible.
Dromeda5 wrote:For a game that has been clearly a victim of feature creep, I see it as out of question to even consider the idea of Josh adding even new stuff like planets rotating or moving or crew management.
Let me refer you to what BFett actually said, which is what I was responding to:
BFett wrote:What are the features you would not mind missing from a beta build? What features must be in the beta?
My point being, BFett didn't ask, "What features should Josh include or exclude?" He asked us, the uninformed masses, what we'd like to see in the beta and what we wouldn't mind not seeing.

That's purely a matter of subjective opinion, not marching orders to Josh.

So I offered my opinions, with absolutely zip-point-zero expectation that Josh will even read them, much less consider them, and even much less actually follow any of them.

If you disagree, cool. Let's see your prioritized list of features. I promise not to criticize them as though I'm worried that Josh might alter his development plans.
Post

Re: Preference of beta completeness

#17
Flatfingers, thank you for the very detailed response I enjoyed reading the list. I do hope to see additional responses with a bit more details so that we can have a bit more discussion on this topic.


Must Have
Multiple star systems (connected via wormholes)
NPC controlled ships
Real yet simplified markets (ships transport goods, price changes based on buy/sell over time)
Limited weapon ammo, ship repairs (armor/weapons)
Various ship classes (4 or so would be fine)
Space Stations
Basic contract system
Basic fleet control/management
Basic Executive NPCs with same powers as player
Procedurally generate-able ships/stations (including the first iteration of the ship designer)
Basic Construction (ships and items)


Good but could live without
Factions spanning specific areas
Ship cargo dropping on death
Planetary colonies
Basic sensors for seeing what's nearby
Asteroid mining
Complex versions of the basic stuff above
Real historical universe generation (things are where they are because of history not numbers)
Fuel


Okay but not required
Crew mechanics/personalities
Research
Rotating planets


Please don't spend more time on this
Asset graphics (ships, stations, weapon effects, ect.)
Nebula graphics
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Post

Re: Preference of beta completeness

#18
Of course, there is the tendency to overlook how committed Josh is to providing a fully procedural game. It's somewhat of an obsession with the coding warrior.

If he's going to deliver the game he imagines, that obsession will drive the decisions he makes. I doubt if he would even contemplate compromising that core driving factor. So cutting corners by introducing elements that are not procedural is unlikely. Unless they are unavoidable. :angel:

:shifty: Maybe I'm stating the obvious here but it will be a key factor in what you will see in the beta.
Post

Re: Preference of beta completeness

#19
Dromeda5 wrote:Or does anybody think that after two whole years not even warp-lanes were finished?
Yes, many of us think exactly that regarding every aspect of the game.
BFett wrote:I do hope to see additional responses with a bit more details so that we can have a bit more discussion on this topic.
Happy to oblige:

Must Have
Multiple star systems
Planets
Space Stations
NPC controlled ships
Basic sensors for seeing what's nearby
Basic markets (price changes based on player's and NPC's buy/sell in the system over time)
Basic contract system
Basic Executive NPCs with same powers as player
Basic Construction (ships and items)
Various weapon types (laser, mass driver, missiles, plasma would be fine)
Various ship classes (fighter, corvette, capital, carrier would be fine with ability to demilitarise each as desired e.g. for mining, freight, exploring)
Procedurally generate-able ships/stations (including the first iteration of the ship designer)

Okay but not required
Research
Factions spanning specific areas
Asteroid mining
Fuel
Complex versions of the basic stuff above

Please don't spend more time on this
Real historical universe generation (things are where they are because of history not numbers)
Crew mechanics/personalities
Rotating planets
Planetary colonies
Asset graphics (ships, stations, weapon effects, ect.)
Nebula graphics
Experiencing a significant gravitas shortfall
Post

Re: Preference of beta completeness

#20
Zero Gravitas wrote:
Dromeda5 wrote:Or does anybody think that after two whole years not even warp-lanes were finished?
Yes, many of us think exactly that regarding every aspect of the game.
We have seen working warp lanes before the dark days.

Now, I personally felt that Josh spent more time than he probably should have with them, and focused too much on the aesthetics of them... When he could have made them "good enough" for "now" to get to the long over due (even at the time) beta... but hey.
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Re: Preference of beta completeness

#21
Zanteogo wrote:We have seen working warp lanes before the dark days.
We saw a lot of things implemented before Josh decided to rebuild the engine twice over. Sure, the architecture for any given system is easy to reimplement once figured out the first time, but it still needs to be reimplemented. When I see warp lanes working in the current engine, then I'll agree that they are "finished".
Experiencing a significant gravitas shortfall
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Re: Preference of beta completeness

#22
Zero Gravitas wrote:
Zanteogo wrote:We have seen working warp lanes before the dark days.
We saw a lot of things implemented before Josh decided to rebuild the engine twice over. Sure, the architecture for any given system is easy to reimplement once figured out the first time, but it still needs to be reimplemented. When I see warp lanes working in the current engine, then I'll agree that they are "finished".
Very true.
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Re: Preference of beta completeness

#23
Words like Beta, pre-alpha, premium beta, early access don't mean that much anymore. Everyone seems to have their own idea of what they mean and how "complete" a game has to be. At present I'd love to play the LT prototype in the new engine but I'm not convinced that exists at present or rather that the current build is at that level. Ultimately it's a guessing game.
Post

Re: Preference of beta completeness

#24
Philip Coutts wrote:Words like Beta, pre-alpha, premium beta, early access don't mean that much anymore. Everyone seems to have their own idea of what they mean and how "complete" a game has to be. At present I'd love to play the LT prototype in the new engine but I'm not convinced that exists at present or rather that the current build is at that level. Ultimately it's a guessing game.
Just define it as the next public release version of Limit Theory. Also, this is somewhat off topic as the topic is about what you would like to see in a publicly available version of Limit Theory and not about the definition of beta or how to word it in other ways. If you want to discuss that please create your own thread.

Please stay on topic people.
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Re: Preference of beta completeness

#25
Erm it was on topic. I said what I'd like to see as a beta, the LT prototype but running in the new engine. I was merely pointing out that everyone has very different views on what a beta is these days.

More specifically it matters not a jot what we think a Beta is or how complete we think the game needs to be or indeed what we would accept, the only person whose opinions count is Josh's.
Post

Re: Preference of beta completeness

#26
So, if LT were to be released you'd be satisfied with an experience much like the prototype? Okay, I can live with that.

I personally would like a game that leans more towards the economics aspect of a space sim. There are hundreds of shooters on the market but very few games which have a solid economic side to them. I think that this may be an untapped market if implemented correctly. Combat is fun, but it can get old after a while.
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Re: Preference of beta completeness

#28
I'm seeing these lists (like Flatfingers, BFett, & Zero Gravitas) and thinking "Wow, that sure seems like big list" :shock: I don't mean that critcaly either. I've watched the videos when they were being posted and I've lurked in the forums reading posts, just generally trying to keep up with things. But, wow :wtf: these lists of things really puts the game into perspective for me, especially when I consider that it's one guy working on it. I'm in awe... :clap:

Since I'm no backer, I'll just have to agree with the lists of what have already been posted. But I would love some kind of beta to play with, and any or all of those features seems great. I enjoy seeing how the beta/early access/pilot episode of things change somewhat from the final product. In the end I guess I don't really have anything constructive to add to the on going conversation. So ummm...sorry for the long post. :wave:
Post

Re: Preference of beta completeness

#29
Dromeda5, I get a little tickle of a feeling that you may be one of those people who just likes to argue, to be seen as contrarian. In which case, this will be a short conversation.
Not at all :) And I don't know why would you think that just because I disagreed with one post of yours. If you found my tone too acid, I apologize!
If Josh hadn't told us he was ripping out the Limit Theory Script Language (in which, presumably, some or all of the warp rail functionality was implemented), I might agree with you.

But I don't know how much switching from LTSL to Python invalidated the LTSL script code. Maybe not much at all, in which case, sure, if it's in there, leave it.

If the Python code is significantly different though -- which is not an unreasonable guess since it's been how long now since that switchover with no word from Josh? -- and a lot of stuff would have to be pretty much rewritten from scratch, then my comments apply.
Now I see where you are coming from. But frankly, that's new for me. I've read all Josh's posts in the past, but I did it again today and I don't see how could you get the impression that anything would be invalidated. Or in other words, why switching and converting from one language to another would harm any features? It does not make sense. I mean it even if Python code is different from LTSL. But in all likelihood they are at least similar enough. Reasons for that? Simple: first, both were implemented with the very same aim, which is being simple to use to code gameplay! Then Second, Josh always liked Python and used it as inspiration for scripting. That was said before in the past.

So, assuming the obvious before considering the less plausible, which is that converting means converting what already was coded, implementation time-costs of warp lanes (which again I agreed with you they didn't worth it) are already paid. Actually, even if warp-lane code is one of the things that was still not converted, it would be beyond any doubt that just converting such implementation from any language to another (with exception of assembly) is much less costly than implementing any other solution from scratch, as cheap in programing time-cost as it might be.
Thanks for checking on that. Nope, it's not the only reason -- as I describe above, I'm speculating that the latest period of silence is because it's taking time to rewrite a lot of stuff in Python. If so, then if it were up to me I wouldn't rewrite the warp rails code because I don't think it contributes nearly as much fun as do the other features I listed.
You see, I was not trying to be a jerk. I just made the following reasoning. Once your time-cost argument didn't make sense, the only one relevant that subsisted was how warp-lanes prevented rotating and moving planets. Which again is a relevant argument, but of course it's way too late for it (unfortunately, since again I agreed with you).
I think we may have different definitions of what "core" means. ;)

(...)

I think that prioritization is completely defensible.
Happy to agree with both things :D Of course prioritization is completely defensible. I never said the contrary. Actually, it's defensible not only because the game is late. Prioritizing should have been important from the beginning.

I just don't see how to "prioritize" dropping things that Josh himself mentioned as core LT things, that define the game, in favor of including as must haves things like "Basic LOD management for NPC" or including as ok-to-have things were never planned at all. Sure, we all can have our preferences. But I guess the idea is not to start debating about the ideal game we would like to play if we could design it ourselves (and once again, since I agreed with many of your points, our ideal game is not that different).

Dromeda5 wrote:For a game that has been clearly a victim of feature creep, I see it as out of question to even consider the idea of Josh adding even new stuff like planets rotating or moving or crew management.
Let me refer you to what BFett actually said, which is what I was responding to:
BFett wrote:What are the features you would not mind missing from a beta build? What features must be in the beta?
My point being, BFett didn't ask, "What features should Josh include or exclude?" He asked us, the uninformed masses, what we'd like to see in the beta and what we wouldn't mind not seeing.

That's purely a matter of subjective opinion, not marching orders to Josh.

So I offered my opinions, with absolutely zip-point-zero expectation that Josh will even read them, much less consider them, and even much less actually follow any of them.
Here I think you lost yourself a bit. I think it's clear what BFett asked. And it was not "what you did want to see in your ideal LT". It was something in the lines of "from what we know LT was planned to have, what we would classify as crucial for beta completeness". I only pointed, and of course I insist, that for a game that has been clearly a victim of feature creep, I see it as out of question to even consider the idea of Josh adding even new stuff like planets rotating or moving or crew management. These features were never in LT's list. So how does it make sense to appear in your list of things that would/wouldn't be required for beta completeness?
If you disagree, cool. Let's see your prioritized list of features. I promise not to criticize them as though I'm worried that Josh might alter his development plans.
Your irony was gratuitous and mis-targeted: I am not the one including in my list new features that would need change in development plans. But sounds good, I will try to write down my list later only with things that were known to be planned for LT.
Post

Re: Preference of beta completeness

#30
Here it goes my list (which includes only what it's known to be planned for LT):

Must Have
- basic procedural content that was *already* in the game 2 years ago:
procedural ships, stations, planets and asteroids. Ships needed some love, but the rest was fine enough.
- basic asteroid mining (e.g. in the form of what was pretty much already implemented 2 years ago)
- multiple ship classes
- basic contract/mission system
- basic economy market so buying/selling items make sense
- multiple star systems (at this point, connected whatever way)
- NPC ships
- basic NPC factions
- basic fleet control/management

Would love to have but could live without
- planetary colonies
- procedurally generated history
- advanced ship-building system
- ability to own/build stations
- gas-giants

Okay but not required
- Research system
- Procedural items/commodities
- Procedural weapons
- Modding system (as Flatfingers said, "modding is nice, but don't you actually want a game to play?")
- Player-creatable planetary colonies
- Full information economy
- docking into bigger ships

Please don't spend more time on this
- Nebula graphics
- Game basic HUD and UI
- Warp-lanes
- engine refactoring
- meta-tools to "make programming much more efficient!"

Might have to reconsider
- VR support (if the engine is suffering to handle 60fps, hammering it to handle VR will take an eternity, if at all possible)
- if modding is to be included, why not being less ambitious about its extent so you know, a game can be delivered?

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