More Dev Communication

Discussion in 'The Veterans' Lounge' started by Shakara, Apr 30, 2022.

  1. Shakara Augur

    Often times when reading patch notes or on new xpac releases I am frustrated because there is often little communication from the devs. In other games I play (League of Legends and Age of Empires) there is frequent communication from the devs on things like patch notes, state of the game, and upcoming content.

    In most other games when patch notes are released for each change or set of related changes there are short descriptions from the devs to give the players insight on why the devs felt the need to make a that change. In addition there will be a communication at the beginning of the patch notes to talk about what they hope the patch would achieve and what they are looking to change in upcoming patches. It would be really nice if the EQ devs did this so we know where they are going and how they are processing our feedback. For instance if the devs didn't make a change people had been asking for because they saw reason not to due to internal testing then it would be useful as players to know that on the other hand perhaps a change is made to try and fix a outstanding issue as players we could then give feedback on if such change is working and why or why not.

    In terms of state of the game it would be really nice to know what direction the EQ devs are trying to go. What things are they happy with? What new things are they trying to add? What are their goals? Where do they feel like they had success? Where do they feel they missed the mark? Its really nice to have stuff to look forward to and to talk about with other players. Just look at how TLP announcements get the community buzzing. There are content creators out there who would talk about EQ giving it much needed exposure if you just gave them something to talk about. They can be broad goals such as changing the dynamics of travel or raiding or more specific such as class direction or new mechanics.

    Upcoming content has at least had some progress with the roadmap that came out this year. It was very good to see what was coming up on the docket for the year my biggest wish is that it will not just be an annual communication and will have quarterly updates so we can see what things have been completed, added, or delayed.
    Hobitses, Veteran_BetaTester and Dre. like this.
  2. Benito EQ player since 2001.

    This is a counterpoint. Take these observations as you wish.

    1. Devs are fairly interactive on Bug Reports. They infrequently post on Veteran's Lounge and TLP. You can also reach them on Discord. In the past, I haven't had any issues with communicating with devs through direct messages as long as it was constructively related to the game.

    2. The EQ team is lean. The EQ engine and code is archaic. The devs are more than likely working on the game (degrees of labor that surpass our assumptions).

    3. Retail communication may be another layer of work. The devs likely already write reports for management. Imagine the added labor of waiting on the every needs, whims of the playerbase. Granted, there's a sensible level of communication that may be the status quo. I really could do away with excess communication if it also upholds their labor rights (not being overworked or working on the nights/weekends).

    4. Other games have great communication but tend to overpromise or use marketing to fleece their customers. For instance, several MMO vaporware titles are highly communicative but do so to gain more funds with little actual development. More communication is not always better.

    5. Dev communication is quoted for precedent and promises. In some ways, it is actually dangerous for devs to over-communicate. For instance, pro-automation posters are (inaccurately) citing decades old posts or brainstorming session dicta to rationalize their gameplay. People still crack jokes about ship-to-ship combat. You get the point: there's a moral hazard to communication.

    You have a point. I'm just saying levels of communication is probably more nuanced and subjective than commonly assumed among some players.
  3. Skuz I am become Wrath, the Destroyer of Worlds.

    EQ has always been somewhat minimalist on the communication front, but they try.

    I do however get the impression that there is a lot more hard work going on than is usual, even for a game company that is very hardworking with limited resources in spite of it being able to afford more.

    I think it would be nice, but only so many hours in the day.
    Hobitses, minimind, Elyssanda and 2 others like this.
  4. Febb Augur

    I think this is more of the community managers job than the devs. Leave them alone so they can work on the game. It sucks being focused on your work, only to have someone come along and pull you off a project to communicate what you are doing and so forth. Trying to communicate these sorts of things takes time to throw into an official format that people will understand.
    Timmyboi, Nennius, Skuz and 1 other person like this.
  5. Nennius Curmudgeon

    And I still enjoy comments from the Devs. Even when they are obvious displays of koala favoritism.
    Qwalla, Dre., Elyssanda and 2 others like this.
  6. I_Love_My_Bandwidth Mercslayer

    Just curious - but what, exactly, do you want to hear from developers? Seriously - what is it you think you need from them? You want to have a say in the process or something? :confused:
    Petalonyx likes this.
  7. Iven the bard

    The communication skill of the devs is still stuck in the Ruins of Kunark expansion and they love to surprise us with good things in patches that nobody has ordered.
    Dre. likes this.
  8. Benito EQ player since 2001.

    Many unannounced patch items could be 'under the hood' fixes. Changes on the code/engine side could help streamline the design side. It could mean more or higher quality content down the road. A hardworking dev such as Niente is tackling the dirty work (game's plumbing) which could bear fruit in the future.
    Bardy McFly likes this.
  9. Petalonyx Augur

    Having experienced the communication of devs in other games, i have to say that EQ devs are awesome.
    Stymie likes this.
  10. Shakara Augur

    Well if you read the post you will know.
  11. Shakara Augur

    Here is an example for an Age of Empires 4 patch. This is a good example of what I would like to see in EQ patch notes. 2-3 sentences is not that much to ask for non-bug related fixes.
    https://www.ageofempires.com/news/age-of-empires-iv-season-one-update-release-notes/
  12. Wobat Journeyman

    It only took 10 minutes for Benito to write a book White Knighting for the devs.
    Dre. and Brontus like this.
  13. Benito EQ player since 2001.

    New Member,

    Being understanding of workloads and supporting labor rights is not "White Knighting."
  14. Corwyhn Lionheart Guild Leader, Lions of the Heart

    It would be nice if Daybreak was brave enough to come out and explain the reasons they decided to nerf grind exp and let us discuss with them. It may be that then some of us can decide if we want to continue with the game or not. If

    Only things I can think of is they want to push everyone into misisons hard OR they think it cuts down on the autobots. Thing is if you can auto play 24/7 the exp rate would have to be zero on grinding.

    Not sure if they started running missions automated. I have heard folks flipping missions using software and that may be part of the recent crackdown or the current owners don't want cheating. All that stuff is fine.

    BUT
    Some folks are actually incapable of seeing both sides in a discussion so they throw out White Knighting every time.

    I can disagree with Daybreak polices and still think the Devs are doing the best they can. But looking at both sides of an argument is beyond some. *sighs*
    Nennius likes this.
  15. Bardy McFly Augur

    I still dream of a day where EQ is made open source with community contributions and we can all just look for ourselves at what has changed. I sure the codebase is far from being able to do that, but one can still dream.
    Corwyhn Lionheart likes this.
  16. Corwyhn Lionheart Guild Leader, Lions of the Heart

    I though he was just being realistic.
    Bardy McFly and Benito like this.
  17. Grove Augur

    Anyone else remember that long ago you could see code changes noted as the patch loaded? It took a fast eye, though.
  18. Skuz I am become Wrath, the Destroyer of Worlds.

    This is true.

    Plenty of "Internal Patch Notes" with server-side / back-end system fixes that aren't really relevant to players.
    Nennius, Benito and Bardy McFly like this.
  19. Brontus EQ Player Activist

    IMHO, they are not trying hard enough. Props to developer Niente for demonstrating to players how a dev can mange to find the time to communicate to players and treat us like adults.

    How is it that Elon Musk the richest man in the world who is focusing running various endeavors such SpaceX, Tesla, and now Twitter, has the bandwidth to communicate every day on Twitter, conducting press interviews and more, can do all of of this, yet some EQ devs can't seem to find the time to communicate with EQ players and give us the occasional paragraph of insight and information?

    This goes for the people higher up in the EG7/Daybreak/Darkpaw organization as well.

    It's not a lack of time that is the problem, it's is a lack of will and a lack of imagination. You get what you tolerate. For too long, the EQ dev team has been the victim of low expectations and excuses from the handful of white knights that have bogged down these forums in intellectual atherosclerosis.

    The key problem is that the EverQuest franchise does not have a product evangelist. I'm not talking about a glorified social media manager either, I'm talking about a serious visionary leader/designer/developer with authority and gravitas to make things happen. I'm talking about someone of Jeff Butler's caliber. We really need an exceptional and articulate spokesperson who is fighting for Norrath and the unique EverQuest experience.
    Dre. likes this.
  20. Febb Augur

    Elon Musk works at his own pace, he doesn't have deadlines he has to meet. He doesn't have a boss standing over his shoulder asking him when he is going to be done and to hurry. This is the life of a developer, we don't have time to stop what we're doing to make sure people know what's going on, that's a community managers job.