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AoS3 - The points discussion


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22 minutes ago, thubivision said:

Which probably makes you think of something cynical regarding GW’s play testing. Maybe their process does suck, who knows. I can tell you this from my work experience. We playtest the game every single day for 2-3 years. Dozens of full matches a day. When it gets closer to ship, we have an army of QA testers playing the game. We have open Alphas and Betas. During all of this we collect data to analyze and make informed decisions. Roughly 10 minutes after the game goes live, there’s literal orders of magnitude more data than we generated in the entire dev cycle. This alone can expose things that nobody else noticed and may seem super obvious in hindsight.

GW definitely doesnt have that. They might have a handful of people playing a couple games here and there and then their feedback is probably largely ignored 

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26 minutes ago, thubivision said:

The reality is some poor soul probably stuck his head out to see what the reception was to the GHB info getting out and feels awful while double checking his tuning algorithm and scrambling to make changes for a FAQ.

This is also part of the problem...how are things so impactful like rules and points in the hands of just a single person? Or 2 people? Ideas and decisions on stuff like that need dedicated teams so they can proofread and check eachother.  

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1 hour ago, thubivision said:

 

Thanks for coming to my TED talk.

This TED talk was super insightful but the thing I slay GW for that you take for granted is all the controls:

You don't have just one person who tests their code in prod designing the whole game/army book, which is essentially what GW is doing. You have alpha to beta testing, the latter of which is often public for some games in a limited way, and you have QC, and there is a framework around your design and what you are doing.

The main reason I will hammer GW is we know for a fact that they don't have good infrastructure around design. In fact, studying how video game companies do it would go a long way for them, and I don't sling nearly the same nonsense at people who at least try to beta test and get things right at a much grander scale as I do at GW, because it's much easier for them and they still f it up badly.

Source: I actually think Cyberpunk 2077 was a good game and the hype just got ahead of itself and I think people should chill out about Overwatch balance. So I don't think I'm some super judgmental ****** here (at least about this). GW does just get an F for process.

Edited by Reinholt
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56 minutes ago, Malakithe said:

This is also part of the problem...how are things so impactful like rules and points in the hands of just a single person? Or 2 people? Ideas and decisions on stuff like that need dedicated teams so they can proofread and check eachother.  

Who says they don't? At the end of the day, there's one person responsible. Otherwise how would you settle disputes? Design by committee isn't typically thought of as a positive. It's all subjective (otherwise, we wouldn't be having this discussion) and who's to say that one person's opinion is better than anybody else's? There could be 10 people involved, bouncing ideas off each other and reviewing everything but at the end of the day it's ultimately one person's responsibility.

Another personal anecdote: I was the lead and I had tasked another designer with creating the weapon progression for gungame. I didn't agree with what he came back with and gave my feedback. He chose not to consider it. We had some heated debate. At the end of the day, what kind of leader would I be if I pulled rank and made him do what I wanted? What am I paying him for? He was hired, he was tasked with the responsibility because he's the expert, and for better or worse he owns it. It would certainly be easier if there was an objective right answer I could have shown him, but that's not how design works.

 

2 minutes ago, Reinholt said:

The main reason I will hammer GW is we know for a fact that they don't have good infrastructure around design. In fact, studying how video game companies do it would go a long way for them, and I don't sling nearly the same nonsense at people who at least try to beta test and get things right at a much grander scale as I do at GW, because it's much easier for them and they still f it up badly.

Yeah, I have absolutely zero insight into how GW runs things and it's completely possible that it's a total debacle. Relying on print and long lead times for game balance is pretty outdated and frankly unacceptable in 2021. I'm not necessarily trying to defend the company, just some of the designer hate triggered me.

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7 minutes ago, thubivision said:

Yeah, I have absolutely zero insight into how GW runs things and it's completely possible that it's a total debacle. Relying on print and long lead times for game balance is pretty outdated and frankly unacceptable in 2021. I'm not necessarily trying to defend the company, just some of the designer hate triggered me.

 

I feel you on that and I think it's justified. What I hate is the design PROCESS for GW; a lone designer of a tabletop game should have support (playtesters, an overall project manager who ensures all the books are in line, technical writers/readers to help with clarity, etc.). I am all but certain GW does not have that. In a way, they are hanging the designers out to dry as well by not giving them proper support.

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Of course the points are a crapshow of irrational choices. That's what matched play is; a good base set of rules brought low by absolutely inane point costs. You will all still need to self balance like before, and points are still a guideline at best like before. That's the devil we know, it is what Matched has always been.

Also lol at it not even taking one page for someone to make the argument that an army which doesn't win tournaments is bad.

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22 minutes ago, Reinholt said:

 

I feel you on that and I think it's justified. What I hate is the design PROCESS for GW; a lone designer of a tabletop game should have support (playtesters, an overall project manager who ensures all the books are in line, technical writers/readers to help with clarity, etc.). I am all but certain GW does not have that. In a way, they are hanging the designers out to dry as well by not giving them proper support.

I agree with this. Having all the weight of the power and responsibility shouldnt be shouldered on a single person. It seems rather inefficient and archaic when money is on the line and lead times are months and months out for finished products. 

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I get that Slaneesh definitely got hit unreasonably hard, but the changes to GSG all seem more than reasonable to me.  The models that weren't seeing much play didn't get touched, while the battlelines got hit to discourage people from going 120+ Grots like they did before (which was honestly incredibly dull).  Most Behemoths took a hit but with the new Rampages that was bound to happen; same with Endless Spells due to them now being bound and the huge buff to predatory spells.  Just because they were off the mark somewhere doesn't mean they're terrorists and out to destroy the game as we know it is my point basically lol.

Edited by Dingding123
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To provide a different professional perspective, a large component of my work is basically proofreading technical work. And as anyone who does similar work will tell you, it's all about process, not individuals. When a major mistake makes it into print, that's not an individual error, it's a collective error, because it should never be only one person making changes that aren't checked and double-checked and triple-checked by other people who weren't directly involved in writing it in the first place, because you can't proofread your own work, that's a basic rule. 

I can tell you with some confidence that GW either does not employ editors who understand the substance of what they are proofreading, or they ignore the feedback those editors give. Something like the 240 points per model Nundams wouldn't make it through even non-professional proofreading by a third party who understands the game. The only way something like that makes it into print is if they're sending stuff off to the printers without proofing it competently. Ditto for the 10 point Reavers. These aren't even developer mistakes BTW, it's not like the developers intended for the Nundams to be 240 points per model and immune to damage 1 weapons, those are just language errors that nobody spotted, and the only way nobody spots things that blatant is if your processes are inadequate. For something like that to make its way into print once is a failure. To have it happen multiple times within a period of a few months shows something is seriously wonky with the way they proof their documents. 

To the point that it costs money to put up a day-1 FAQ to change just one value...yes, but that's why you shouldn't foul it up in the first place. The fact that GW doesn't feel embarrassed enough about serious errors to fix them immediately is also why said errors keep making it into print in the first place. A culture that placed more value on getting it right in the first place is also a culture that would place enough value on correcting the error immediately to pay the people involved a couple hours of overtime if necessary to get said FAQ out, or, at a minimum, to maintain some sort of "known issues" list that can let people know they're aware of the error and working on fixing it. 

Now those are typographical errors, not balance errors. But from what we know of GW's playtesting program, it's every bit as basic as its editing. A company worth billions should be able to do better. It's not a failure of individual developers, it's a failure to put into place the sort of processes that we should expect for a company that claims to deliver premium products at a premium price. There'd probably be less developers feeling sad looking at the negative feedback towards their work if GW invested in making sure that work gets checked better before it goes out the door in the first place, and especially if they invested more in communicating how their processes work and in enlisting the help of the community in improving them. 

 

 

Edited by yukishiro1
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To the CoD dev:

Is the claim here that you guys design for balance exclusively, and not accounting for how progression affects the player’s engagement with the game, among other things?

Because honestly, without going into the ad hominem, it looked like you were painting a picture in which devs do their best but a misguided community attacks them anyway. I don’t think devs want to do a bad job, but I also believe that a good job is not to deliver a properly balanced game. The illusion of balance is present3d because it has some appeal for the players, but the actual games are all but.

Same as I am absolutely convinced some of the internal and external imbalances in AoS and 40K are there by design. They are not obscure rule interactions, some things like artifacts and strats in 40K are clearly poorly internally balanced to the point of being trivially obvious differences. 

 

 

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It definitely isn't obscure interactions or combos, because honestly even internet communities tend to be relatively forgiving about that stuff.

It's stuff like first-battletome Depravity, Petrifax, LRL Sentinels, Zombies, etc. Stuff that is obvious upon reading to anyone with a degree of experience. Stuff that yeah, a bunch of unqualified players could do better. And did for that matter, prior to the first GHB.

I've said it before; I could spit out the most balanced set of point costs AoS has ever seen (that's a low bar, mind) given maybe a month of doing it on the side with my own time. I'm far from unique in that.

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Do people not feel that some of the points changes could possibly due to new Battletomes coming out soon which will change armies anyway?

I noticed that the Warhammer Community article on Maggotkin contains some strange advice and glaring errors e.g Pusgoyles having 8W rather than 7.

The same article also recommend Nurglings which have gone up by 10 points! This was written by a playetester.

I suspect therefore some of the weirder points changes are because some factions have a BT coming out soon with warscroll changes.

 

 

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37 minutes ago, Warpfiend said:

Do people not feel that some of the points changes could possibly due to new Battletomes coming out soon which will change armies anyway?

I noticed that the Warhammer Community article on Maggotkin contains some strange advice and glaring errors e.g Pusgoyles having 8W rather than 7.

The same article also recommend Nurglings which have gone up by 10 points! This was written by a playetester.

I suspect therefore some of the weirder points changes are because some factions have a BT coming out soon with warscroll changes.

 

 

Unfortunately I do not think there is any point in considering these articles unless you are maybe absolutely new to the game and want an idea of what a faction is. I don't know why they need to have playtesters in these articles because what is being said has rarely anything to do with even half competitive play.

Best to just see these as fluff pieces rather than actual rule and mechanics "reviews".

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I totally agree that these are puff pieces at the end of the day. Nonetheless it rare that they contain massive errors in them.

That suggests that some of these articles were written based on new BTs in mind.

The only point I am making is that some points changes are also probably based on new BTs.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Warpfiend said:

Do people not feel that some of the points changes could possibly due to new Battletomes coming out soon which will change armies anyway?

I noticed that the Warhammer Community article on Maggotkin contains some strange advice and glaring errors e.g Pusgoyles having 8W rather than 7.

The same article also recommend Nurglings which have gone up by 10 points! This was written by a playetester.

I suspect therefore some of the weirder points changes are because some factions have a BT coming out soon with warscroll changes.

 

 

Thats possible as the new Soulblight book was designed for 3.0 and it wasnt touched points wise but GW in their infinite wisdom keeps us in the dark about that kind of stuff

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5 hours ago, thubivision said:

I get that the new points can be disappointing, but boy do I have a lot of empathy for the GW designers. I’m a video game designer who works on the best selling fps franchise (three words, hesitant to fully out myself). On multiple releases I’ve both been in charge of tuning weapons and managing/leading the person tuning weapons.

I’ve been reading the multiple threads around here and am sort of getting PTSD. I’m just gonna train of thought, so apologies for the rambling. Also, I’m not trying to minimize or take away from anybody’s feelings. I’ve been playing WHFB since 5th edition and 40k since 3rd; I know how bad it feels when the rules change from under you and makes your army not as good as it was.

I have no idea how GW works, but where I work, the community guys are pretty separate from the designers, both physically and with day to day stuff. When they come to design with questions or clarifications, it’s usually a pain for the designer to take the time to try and justify/explain why things are they way they are. There’s also a “once bitten twice shy” that can come from trying to interact with the community (even through an intermediary).

So once we have a game go live, the community guys will trawl the internet and come up with concerns the community has and try to get responses from design. One thing that the feedback almost universally has in common is that none of it comes from looking at the game holistically and trying to better the game as a whole. Any feedback or suggestion originates from a variation of “I use thing X, and thing Y just beat me. It couldn’t possibly be my fault, so thing Y is too powerful and/or thing X is too weak.”

Another issue is that things that may seem simple or quick from the outside aren’t. I saw something in one of these threads about incorrect points in a 40k codex with the comment of “all they had to do was change one number in one document and put out a FAQ.” I get how it could seem like that, but with a big company it’s anything but. Pushing changes can be pricey, so there’s a desire to group them together. There’s translators that the documents have to go through. The web guys have to push it live. And that’s only after the changes are made. Presumably before it gets to that point they’re reviewed and, well, tested.

Which probably makes you think of something cynical regarding GW’s play testing. Maybe their process does suck, who knows. I can tell you this from my work experience. We playtest the game every single day for 2-3 years. Dozens of full matches a day. When it gets closer to ship, we have an army of QA testers playing the game. We have open Alphas and Betas. During all of this we collect data to analyze and make informed decisions. Roughly 10 minutes after the game goes live, there’s literal orders of magnitude more data than we generated in the entire dev cycle. This alone can expose things that nobody else noticed and may seem super obvious in hindsight.

Perceived strength/weakness is also a real thing that can cloud people’s eyes from reality. I’ve severely nerfed overpowered weapons and not seen usage drop. Conversely, I’ve made weak weapons completely broken OP and not seen usage move. And this is with spending a lot of time to create meticulously detailed patch notes to communicate those changes (add another to the “why bother?” column.) Once a community believes something to be at a certain strength, it’s hard to dislodge that no matter what changes. I suspect that competent Hedonites players will be very successful as their opponents won’t have a lot of experience against them and will underestimate their strengths. More-so if points are adjusted down.

Anyway, I feel bad for the designers. I think the worst feeling in the world is going on a forum for a game you poured your heart into, for a game you missed your kids’ bedtimes for, to see how people like it but instead find people calling you incompetent, getting literal death threats, having your work equated to dropping a hydrogen bomb on a developing nation. And for reasons like that, over my 18 year career, I’ve grown to resent the fans. Maybe not resent, but I certainly don’t feel the need to justify my decisions when no matter what you do/say people will be jerks about it. Not everyone is terrible, but there’s a reason people say that a bad apple spoils the bunch. I avoid the internet for about 2 months after a product I work on goes live because I’m just over the abuse.

That’s basically all I have to say. Designers are people and people make mistakes. Nobody is sitting in Nottingham twirling their mustache and celebrating how they f-ed over Slaanesh. The reality is some poor soul probably stuck his head out to see what the reception was to the GHB info getting out and feels awful while double checking his tuning algorithm and scrambling to make changes for a FAQ.

Thanks for coming to my TED talk.

This.

Players / customers forget that for every designer there is over a hundred thousand users braying for his attention.

It's why GW folded up their forum in the ancient past, and it's why they have a marketing department - it's the marketing team that deals with all of this stuff, adn I guarantee you that the design team will have little or no feedback from them once the product is out there.

"how did this product do?"

"Yea, we got 100k likes on tweetfacegram - it's really popular"

..the accounts department are looking at sales figures, and if the sales of a (new) product tank, then maybe someone will ask the question.

Its the way corporate structure works.

There are a million people out there sat in their armchairs shouting at the TV telling a racing driver, footballer etc how to do their job, despite the fact that if you were in their place you would probably do so much worse.

As a design engineer in an unrelated industry, there are things I so desperately want to do, that I know the user base would love, but I can't as the machine won't let me, be it for reasons of money / future strategy / solar eclipse.  there's always a massive disconnect between creators and the people telling them to create in companies of this size.

I can't begin to think how many times our ideas have been thrown out because they conflicted with something that marketing or AN other strategy department had planned two years downstream. And this is the crux, projects like this are a couple of years ahead in the making if not more, 3.0 would have been started to be thought about probably no more than 6 to 12 months after 2.0 landed., starting with a story line , timeline of possible releases, new model strategies and what's going to get squatted / updated.

As runebrush said, you need to keep it constructive, as from experience I know that a company like GW / EA / etc of that size and global reach will shut down all the while it hears whining and people saying it's rubbish but the sales figures say otherwise.

Have you wondered why there hasn't been another community survey since the last one?   I bet there was a lot of "my faction is missing this (as I see it)... why aren't you sorting it?"

The passion is amazing but you have to communicate it in the right way, otherwise they just shut down and all they hear is red faced ranting noise.

I'd bet a good part of it is comments which basically just rip into them, and there would have been some dude at the top looking at the feedback as nothing more than a green happy, yellow meh and red whingers graph and saying "I don't care what they (red) think - the other two are still high, profits are strong, people are still buying and haters gonna hate, so we must be doing something right.  Ignore the rest".

bottom line is that if you're not putting money in that cash register, then you're not a customer, you're a tourist, a window shopper, the guy sat in the armchair telling the guy doing it how he should have done it.

Currently you're looking at everything with AoS2 eyes, and its pretty obvious that the last couple of battletomes were written with 3 in mind.

The FAQ / errata that comes out literally a couple of weeks afterwards is not done a week after launch based on feedback, it's probably been in the wings ready to drop since a month or two ago - stuff that they couldn't do before it all had to be released to meet production schedules.  A company of this size cannot react quickly anymore.  It's no longer piloting a kayak, it's in a supertanker now, and everything takes time and forward planning and this guy needs to talk to that guy... the days of yanking on the oar and making it go hard left straight away are long gone.

It was the same as in the last days of fantasy battle.  The blightkings and wrathmongers came out, stormfiends, etc.

Bases were bigger and everyone was complaining that a 3w model was overcosted and had no value as it was on a 40mm base  could attack it,  and that the monsters were on huge bases and stupidly overpowered  and was going to get trashed as three models etc, etc.  Through WHFB eyes it all made no sense.  Then AoS landed, and it all made sense.

I'm sure the designers would have suggested that nothing lands until AoS3 is out.  Strategy and marketing would have argued (and won) that it needs to be released as it's all part of the storyline and we can't advance that without models yada yada.

And that... is the designers' paradox.  Leaving the likes of Ward out of this, most designers want to do a great job, but in reality you get so far and just have to put a bandage on it and throw it out of the door as best yoou can because that timeframe to release never moves.  Your creative time gets squeezed as people are making up their minds as to where to go with it, but that cut off date doesn't slide to compensate.

"Don't worry about it, just get it out the door and we can send the update out under warranty" is what we got.

"Don't worry about it, just get it out the door and we can send the update out as a FAQ / Errata / software patch" is what they, and I guess your industry get.

When everything is on the table, core rules, GHB, and the errata/faq, then see how the dust has settled, and then get your pitchforks and burning torches out.  Until then it's just gossip, rumour and speculation. Keep rolling dice and carry on.

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, thubivision said:

*Snip*

Thanks for your insight :)

I often feel a lot of empathy for video game designers, especially the likes of WoW where the community wants 5 different things and no matter what the team does it's bad in their eyes. I can imagine being a GW designer would be similar (though perhaps without the overwhelming negativity) and it would likely be very draining. 

With what you've said in mind, what would you say is the most constructive way to talk to a designer? Obviously cruelty and death threats are abhorrent and should never be sent, but how much does constructive criticism help? I can imagine you would get piles of contradictory information which would be a pain to sift through. Do things like stats help more than opinions?

Edited by Enoby
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9 minutes ago, Enoby said:

Thanks for your insight :)

I often feel a lot of empathy for video game designers, especially the likes of WoW where the community wants 5 different things and no matter what the team does it's bad in their eyes. I can imagine being a GW designer would be similar (though perhaps without the overwhelming negativity) and it would likely be very draining. 

I know a guy who literally despises AoS because it took over from his beloved fantasy.

His biggest gripe...

Seriously...

new AoS models are too big to put on 20mm and 25mm square bases, so he can't use stuff like the new skeletons in his fantasy vampire counts, and the new character models are too big for 50mm monster bases.

Apparently GW are stupid, as they're losing so much money by not supporting the old fantasy, and 9th age and kings of war community.

🤦‍♂️

It's when you listen to stuff like that, that you realise try as you might, you can't teach pork.

Edited by Kaleb Daark
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Funny stories about GW playtests : When the Drukhari Codex was released, some playtesters complained. What did they complain about? The Codex released wasn't the one they tested. In their test, some weapons were 1D6 damage (and they became 1D3+3), stats were lower , some rules were missing...
GW made changes and that seems about right after some tests, don't you think? Well none of these playtesters gave them feedback to change these things AND no playtesters tested the changes... In the end, Drukhari were bordeline broken when they came out because no one tested their "new" book.

Some playtesters told GW that in 40K the D6 damages wasn't fun. It was unreliable, frustrating and the players didn't like that. GW team told them that the D6 damages was there for people to use their stratagems!

God, do they have a clue about their games?

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9 minutes ago, Kaleb Daark said:

I know a guy who literally despises AoS because it took over from his beloved fantasy.

His biggest gripe...

Seriously...

new AoS models are too big to put on 20mm and 25mm square bases, so he can't use stuff like the new skeletons in his fantasy vampire counts, and the new character models are too big for 50mm monster bases.

Apparently GW are stupid, as they're losing so much money by not supporting the old fantasy, and 9th age and kings of war community.

🤦‍♂️

It's when you listen to stuff like that, that you realise try as you might, you can't teach pork.

If I were GW / designer in general I would listen to fans / people who love the product and give constructive / positive ideas how to improve and just ignore the haters. 

 

If I‘d get comments like „Omg GW you suck, you ruined Slaanesh, how can you not see how obviously bad the rules are“ I‘d just think to myself even IF it was the case „weeeeell you now got yourself another year of waiting now, gz now go ahead and buy it anyway nerd lol“ 


A bit exaggerated tbf, but who in their right mind really thinks that you get a positive result by aggressively yell for a change you personally want (maybe not even the majority of people). 

 

This community is full of manchilds..

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15 minutes ago, Kaleb Daark said:

Apparently GW are stupid, as they're losing so much money by not supporting the old fantasy, and 9th age and kings of war community.

🤦‍♂️

It's when you listen to stuff like that, that you realise try as you might, you can't teach pork.

...and yet the revival of the Old World by GW is coming. So let's all go "oink oink"?

Some community feedback is rubbish, but frequently GW releases obviously imbalanced options. This is not an satellite, it is a highly simplified wargame.

My take? GW designs for imbalance and sometimes they make mistakes. They simply add too much salt and you have virtually unplayable factions. But, more often than not, whatever bullcrab we see in the rules is a conscious decision.

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12 hours ago, Reinholt said:

 

We've tried like 10% of this. You have to get Honest Wargamer on a hardcore campaign to ban Slaanesh in all tournaments, get the LVO to stop allowing them, get this forum itself to lock the entire Slaanesh forum except for a single "how to fix Slaanesh" thread, spam Youtube and GW's twitter and social media with comments about them, and literally pay for billboards (cheaper than one thinks!) talking ****** about GW for being so dumb they can't fix them.

 

I used to work at an investment bank. What we do is downright polite and kind; nobody is getting a mob together and storming GW's lobby and breaking everything.

Edit: Yet? To be clear not recommending the mob but also didn't want the internet to dunk on me by having this happen just after I wrote it so heading karma off at the pass.

Yeah, you go to Reece and tell him he should ban Slaanesh at his events.

 

He'll go "haha, F off"

7 hours ago, thubivision said:

I get that the new points can be disappointing, but boy do I have a lot of empathy for the GW designers. I’m a video game designer who works on the best selling fps franchise (three words, hesitant to fully out myself). On multiple releases I’ve both been in charge of tuning weapons and managing/leading the person tuning weapons.

I’ve been reading the multiple threads around here and am sort of getting PTSD. I’m just gonna train of thought, so apologies for the rambling. Also, I’m not trying to minimize or take away from anybody’s feelings. I’ve been playing WHFB since 5th edition and 40k since 3rd; I know how bad it feels when the rules change from under you and makes your army not as good as it was.

I have no idea how GW works, but where I work, the community guys are pretty separate from the designers, both physically and with day to day stuff. When they come to design with questions or clarifications, it’s usually a pain for the designer to take the time to try and justify/explain why things are they way they are. There’s also a “once bitten twice shy” that can come from trying to interact with the community (even through an intermediary).

So once we have a game go live, the community guys will trawl the internet and come up with concerns the community has and try to get responses from design. One thing that the feedback almost universally has in common is that none of it comes from looking at the game holistically and trying to better the game as a whole. Any feedback or suggestion originates from a variation of “I use thing X, and thing Y just beat me. It couldn’t possibly be my fault, so thing Y is too powerful and/or thing X is too weak.”

Another issue is that things that may seem simple or quick from the outside aren’t. I saw something in one of these threads about incorrect points in a 40k codex with the comment of “all they had to do was change one number in one document and put out a FAQ.” I get how it could seem like that, but with a big company it’s anything but. Pushing changes can be pricey, so there’s a desire to group them together. There’s translators that the documents have to go through. The web guys have to push it live. And that’s only after the changes are made. Presumably before it gets to that point they’re reviewed and, well, tested.

Which probably makes you think of something cynical regarding GW’s play testing. Maybe their process does suck, who knows. I can tell you this from my work experience. We playtest the game every single day for 2-3 years. Dozens of full matches a day. When it gets closer to ship, we have an army of QA testers playing the game. We have open Alphas and Betas. During all of this we collect data to analyze and make informed decisions. Roughly 10 minutes after the game goes live, there’s literal orders of magnitude more data than we generated in the entire dev cycle. This alone can expose things that nobody else noticed and may seem super obvious in hindsight.

Perceived strength/weakness is also a real thing that can cloud people’s eyes from reality. I’ve severely nerfed overpowered weapons and not seen usage drop. Conversely, I’ve made weak weapons completely broken OP and not seen usage move. And this is with spending a lot of time to create meticulously detailed patch notes to communicate those changes (add another to the “why bother?” column.) Once a community believes something to be at a certain strength, it’s hard to dislodge that no matter what changes. I suspect that competent Hedonites players will be very successful as their opponents won’t have a lot of experience against them and will underestimate their strengths. More-so if points are adjusted down.

Anyway, I feel bad for the designers. I think the worst feeling in the world is going on a forum for a game you poured your heart into, for a game you missed your kids’ bedtimes for, to see how people like it but instead find people calling you incompetent, getting literal death threats, having your work equated to dropping a hydrogen bomb on a developing nation. And for reasons like that, over my 18 year career, I’ve grown to resent the fans. Maybe not resent, but I certainly don’t feel the need to justify my decisions when no matter what you do/say people will be jerks about it. Not everyone is terrible, but there’s a reason people say that a bad apple spoils the bunch. I avoid the internet for about 2 months after a product I work on goes live because I’m just over the abuse.

That’s basically all I have to say. Designers are people and people make mistakes. Nobody is sitting in Nottingham twirling their mustache and celebrating how they f-ed over Slaanesh. The reality is some poor soul probably stuck his head out to see what the reception was to the GHB info getting out and feels awful while double checking his tuning algorithm and scrambling to make changes for a FAQ.

Thanks for coming to my TED talk.

:P I have no sympathy for "oh changes are pricey" from Bobby Kotick's company considering the guy continuously awards himself more and more money and then fires the people working for him to save money for the company. Activision is like a shining example of what's wrong with executives. 

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15 hours ago, yukishiro1 said:

This is why past practice is so important. If GW was in the habit of owning up to mistakes and correcting errors in its publications in a timely fashion, people might give them the benefit of the doubt, even without GW posting a "we know there's issues guys, don't worry, they'll be fixed in a day-1 FAQ." But that would be totally out of character. It took them a month to fix the points costs for Reavers, something that literally only required changing a 1 to a 2 in one place in the document. And again, even when they did it, there was no acknowledgment they had messed up, and it was presented as a "check out these exciting changes we made because we love you so much!" not "our bad guys, this was a really embarrassing error and we'll do our best not to repeat it." And then the same thing happens with the very next book...which they didn't fix with a day-1 FAQ either.

GW hasn't earned the right for people to give it the benefit of the doubt. So that's why communication is doubly important. If there is a big day-1 FAQ coming for AOS 3.0, they should be trumpeting that from the rooftops, not maintaining complete radio silence. 

As relates to AOS points...we literally had them drop the ball last time and tell us there would be no changes at all, because <reasons>, and to wait another 6 months. And now we wait...and we get something that's very hard to make any sort of sense of in many places, with no explanation for the bits that seem to make no sense. It's no surprise people are feeling confused and annoyed, and there's only so many times you can tell someone "just have faith, this time it'll be different" before they stop believing it. 

I get that. But my point is this:

We‘re mixing different problems in one pot. The general criticism is a mash. We‘re blaming bad communication (rightfully so) with bad balancing (not so sure, because we’re in prerelease) and everything is bad.

I wouldn’t even argue with you that the past has been rough. But until now all we can say of AoS is, that the methods of communication haven’t changed, at least not for the better.

Instead the def team gets roasted. While kinda understandable, that doesn’t really make sense. Roast marketing & comms instead. 
Yes, 9e was no moment of initial glory for 40k. But maybe apart from marketing & comms, these were different people. 
So in reality we roast the AoS defs for the wonky start of last edition - something the so far haven’t really had the chance to do better.

 Unless you want to through LRL in the mix. In that case roast on. I’m kidding btw.

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+++ MOD HAT +++

Feel that we may have exhausted the discussion regarding the new points as they've barely been mentioned in the past 3 pages and now veering off track.  If there's nothing else to add, I'll lock the thread later on today.

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