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Kee

Please nix the term "early access", for our sanity.

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This community is great, and there's been a lot of people coming here recently to check out the state of development when is suuuuper duper. HOWEVER, there is a very loud subset of people who do not understand that this game is in pre-Alpha. Yes, I know it says that in many areas - but the front page, and store buttons, and package details all say in big shiny letters "Early access" - which sorta leads people who don't dig much to think that the current available server is just a slightly buggy game.

Please, beat people over the head with big, obnoxious, flashing signs that say "TESTING - THIS IS A TEST. DEAR GOD, PLEASE DON'T GO IN EXPECTING A FLUFFY BETA."

The people who do not do the digging to see the current state are getting upset (and yes, they should have done more digging. That's on them.) BUT their frustration is spilling over into the rest of the community. Folks feel baited into buying a full game that's just rough around the edges. They are wrong, of course - there really isn't a lot of alluding to that at all. But the wording should be MUCH clearer, because sometimes you have to hold peoples hands and explain things to them with small words and a pandering tone.

"Early access" has become synonymous with "eh, we have to work on some more polish but it's basically done" - wrongly so, but that's the state of things. The faithful, patient, and level-headed players don't mind. The loud, upset, and frustrated players do - and their behaviors and opinions are being shaped by this inaccurate assumption. Please let the squeaky, impatient wheel get a little grease, and spoon-feed people a very blatant warning of what the state of things are. The salty folk upset that they don't have the lovably buggy beta they were hoping for are really putting a dark cloud over the community.

 

TL;DR:
People are expecting early access to mean somewhat-buggy, and they're throwing fits that they paid for an alpha test. Please roll your eyes painfully hard, take a drink of something strong, and then type out a condescending tagline that says explicitly "We're currently in Alpha. Alpha means glorified proof of concept. Please exercise patience and don't bark angrily about a lack of content."

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I agree with @Kee on this one! Reddit can be full with 'How fun is the game' then we have to explain, it's pre-alpha and isn't really a game.

I'd reserve "Early Access" as the name of your Soft-Release.

 


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10 hours ago, jetah said:

I agree with @Kee on this one! Reddit can be full with 'How fun is the game' then we have to explain, it's pre-alpha and isn't really a game.

I'd reserve "Early Access" as the name of your Soft-Release.

 

It does say in big letters that the game is in testing phases that you have to click thru to get to the download launcher iirc. I could be wrong though. If not, I agree ACE could always put more places that the game is simply in testing phases. 

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25 minutes ago, Jjohnsin said:

It does say in big letters that the game is in testing phases that you have to click thru to get to the download launcher iirc. I could be wrong though. If not, I agree ACE could always put more places that the game is simply in testing phases. 

The main crowfall.com site doesn't have alpha mentioned via find. Pre Alpha is mentioned on the Early Access page but it's easily overlooked.  Instead of Early Access Pre-Alpha could be used thus preventing any misunderstanding that the game is complete but needs a little polish. To me when I hear Early Access I think of a game in beta with a month or 2 before release.

I see many post on Reddit asking how the game is and in every post someone mentions the 'game' doesn't exist as it's in pre-alpha. Even on the Reddit CF banner it doesn't mention Pre-Alpha!


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14 hours ago, Kee said:

"Early access" has become synonymous with "eh, we have to work on some more polish but it's basically done" - wrongly so, but that's the state of things. The faithful, patient, and level-headed players don't mind. The loud, upset, and frustrated players do - and their behaviors and opinions are being shaped by this inaccurate assumption. Please let the squeaky, impatient wheel get a little grease, and spoon-feed people a very blatant warning of what the state of things are. The salty folk upset that they don't have the lovably buggy beta they were hoping for are really putting a dark cloud over the community.

I think you are making assumptions about these loud, upset, frustrated players.

I consider myself loud, upset and frustrated and I understand that Crowfall is STILL in Pre-Alpha in 2018 even though they said they would launch by 2017. Some people just don't accept the "Pre-Alpha" forever excuse for gameplay. You act like this game is going to change dramatically. I have watched it for over a year now, there hasn't been dramatic changes and I honestly find the game more boring now than I did a year ago.

I have played every early-access survival out there and I don't have problems with buggy games. I have problems with competitive PVP games not being competitive and combat feeling slow and boring. Pre-Alpha isn't just a cover all hogwash excuse to protect every aspect of the game. A game isn't completed on the final day, the journey makes the game and the journey is already like 70% in. You need to understand, you are playing the game that will be released. It will just be more polished and have slightly more content. I think this game sucks and that is why i'm loud, upset and frustrated. Not because I am confused about the Pre-Alpha status it is in.

Edited by ClockworkOrange

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3 hours ago, ClockworkOrange said:

I think you are making assumptions about these loud, upset, frustrated players.

I consider myself loud, upset and frustrated and I understand that Crowfall is STILL in Pre-Alpha in 2018 even though they said they would launch by 2017. Some people just don't accept the "Pre-Alpha" forever excuse for gameplay. You act like this game is going to change dramatically. I have watched it for over a year now, there hasn't been dramatic changes and I honestly find the game more boring now than I did a year ago.

I have played every early-access survival out there and I don't have problems with buggy games. I have problems with competitive PVP games not being competitive and combat feeling slow and boring. Pre-Alpha isn't just a cover all hogwash excuse to protect every aspect of the game. A game isn't completed on the final day, the journey makes the game and the journey is already like 70% in. You need to understand, you are playing the game that will be released. It will just be more polished and have slightly more content. I think this game sucks and that is why i'm loud, upset and frustrated. Not because I am confused about the Pre-Alpha status it is in.

the problem is the term early access usually confers a near complete game with some minor-ish polish needed.  These were called beta about 5 years ago.

When I hit up the CF website I don't see any mention of prealpha or what the current stage the game is in. only big black letters over yellow box saying EARLY ACCESS. It isn't until you get to the backer page that you can see pre-alpha or you can miss it completely. It isn't until you're in game do you really noticed Pre-Alpha. There's a chance someone hit up the forums. There's a chance someone heads over to the CF Reddit and makes a post but the CF Reddit bar doesn't even mention Pre-Alpha.


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5 hours ago, ClockworkOrange said:

I think you are making assumptions about these loud, upset, frustrated players.

I consider myself loud, upset and frustrated and I understand that Crowfall is STILL in Pre-Alpha in 2018 even though they said they would launch by 2017. Some people just don't accept the "Pre-Alpha" forever excuse for gameplay. You act like this game is going to change dramatically. I have watched it for over a year now, there hasn't been dramatic changes and I honestly find the game more boring now than I did a year ago.

I have played every early-access survival out there and I don't have problems with buggy games. I have problems with competitive PVP games not being competitive and combat feeling slow and boring. Pre-Alpha isn't just a cover all hogwash excuse to protect every aspect of the game. A game isn't completed on the final day, the journey makes the game and the journey is already like 70% in. You need to understand, you are playing the game that will be released. It will just be more polished and have slightly more content. I think this game sucks and that is why i'm loud, upset and frustrated. Not because I am confused about the Pre-Alpha status it is in.

I disagree with your opinion, but that's not really the point I'm trying to get at here - I'm not trying to defend or justify why Crowfall is in the state it is.  This isn't aimed at people dissatisfied with the progress made - that's a personal viewpoint, and to each their own. This is about people who will rapidly buy the game, pop into the test server, and then immediately fill the global chat or forums with salt and bitterness.

If you've been keeping up, and you know what you're getting into, then this is not aimed at you at all. This is just for bright-eyed new folk.

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2 hours ago, jetah said:

the problem is the term early access usually confers a near complete game with some minor-ish polish needed.  These were called beta about 5 years ago.

When I hit up the CF website I don't see any mention of prealpha or what the current stage the game is in. only big black letters over yellow box saying EARLY ACCESS. It isn't until you get to the backer page that you can see pre-alpha or you can miss it completely. It isn't until you're in game do you really noticed Pre-Alpha. There's a chance someone hit up the forums. There's a chance someone heads over to the CF Reddit and makes a post but the CF Reddit bar doesn't even mention Pre-Alpha.

Very much past the point of buy in, which is the biggest problem with the current language.

"Early Access" should be renamed to "Test Access". Lose all the debate about alpha pre-alpha, and all the other overused and confusing terms. 

Test is test, and connotes an unfinished product, and a user role other than that of a player. You press buy AFTER a button and language that says testing on it, you have no excuse to complain.

 

 

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5 minutes ago, KrakkenSmacken said:

Very much past the point of buy in, which is the biggest problem with the current language.

"Early Access" should be renamed to "Test Access". Lose all the debate about alpha pre-alpha, and all the other overused and confusing terms. 

Test is test, and connotes an unfinished product, and a user role other than that of a player. You press buy AFTER a button and language that says testing on it, you have no excuse to complain.

 

 

This is exactly the suggestion I was going to make.


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3 hours ago, jetah said:

the problem is the term early access usually confers a near complete game with some minor-ish polish needed.  These were called beta about 5 years ago.

When I hit up the CF website I don't see any mention of prealpha or what the current stage the game is in. only big black letters over yellow box saying EARLY ACCESS. It isn't until you get to the backer page that you can see pre-alpha or you can miss it completely. It isn't until you're in game do you really noticed Pre-Alpha. There's a chance someone hit up the forums. There's a chance someone heads over to the CF Reddit and makes a post but the CF Reddit bar doesn't even mention Pre-Alpha.

I get what you are saying and I think Krakkens recommendation of Test Access is a good solution.

Early Access is just this term that has a bad reputation and that isn't ACE causing this, its the industry overall. I don't know how many Early Access survival games I have played at this point. Some seem like they started development a week ago and others seemed like they should have already released. This leaves the user really not understanding what "Early Access" means as it could be almost anywhere in development up to the point of release.

It is just a vague term people use and often it seems like they use it to sell off a pile of poorly made socks they will never finish.

I think ACE is misleading about where they are in game development. If you go off the emails that are sent to people that subscribed, you would think this game is a lot further along than it really is. poorly made socks I thought this game was much further along when I invested a year ago.

But for the love of god, why are there two test servers (TEST and LIVE). This has to be the most confusing, unnecessary design to date. You have the latest version which is doing the bug collection and that is where all the players who have an understanding of Crowfall live. Then you let the recently tricked "Early Access" subscribers who are ready to play their Early Access game into a version that doesn't match the email announcements you make leaving them totally confused and there aren't any Vets around to explain to them that they aren't on the same server as everyone else.

WHYYYYYYYYYYYY????????????

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1 hour ago, Kee said:

This is about people who will rapidly buy the game, pop into the test server, and then immediately fill the global chat or forums with salt and bitterness.

If you've been keeping up, and you know what you're getting into, then this is not aimed at you at all. This is just for bright-eyed new folk.

Oh yeah, this isn't me.... I waited a few months to fill the forums with salt and bitterness. Getting saltier every day....

You commented on another thread to me about it being pre-alpha. I hate that excuse with a passion and I think it is too often thrown out as a defense when it isn't a valid defense.

The description of loud, upset, frustrated player just seemed to speak to me. Sorry for the confusion. Good day!

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2 hours ago, ClockworkOrange said:

I get what you are saying and I think Krakkens recommendation of Test Access is a good solution.

Early Access is just this term that has a bad reputation and that isn't ACE causing this, its the industry overall. I don't know how many Early Access survival games I have played at this point. Some seem like they started development a week ago and others seemed like they should have already released. This leaves the user really not understanding what "Early Access" means as it could be almost anywhere in development up to the point of release.

It is just a vague term people use and often it seems like they use it to sell off a pile of poorly made socks they will never finish.

I think ACE is misleading about where they are in game development. If you go off the emails that are sent to people that subscribed, you would think this game is a lot further along than it really is. poorly made socks I thought this game was much further along when I invested a year ago.

But for the love of god, why are there two test servers (TEST and LIVE). This has to be the most confusing, unnecessary design to date. You have the latest version which is doing the bug collection and that is where all the players who have an understanding of Crowfall live. Then you let the recently tricked "Early Access" subscribers who are ready to play their Early Access game into a version that doesn't match the email announcements you make leaving them totally confused and there aren't any Vets around to explain to them that they aren't on the same server as everyone else.

WHYYYYYYYYYYYY????????????

Because the need this workflow going forward regardless.  Even after release, they are going to need a "test" environment where players interested in playing the newest content possible have a place to break stuff.  Far too many games launch what is essentially test code on the entire user base because they lack this step.

May as well entrenche that model early.

Edited by KrakkenSmacken

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34 minutes ago, KrakkenSmacken said:

Because the need this workflow going forward regardless.  Even after release, they are going to need a "test" environment where players interested in playing the newest content possible have a place to break stuff.  Far too many games launch what is essentially test code on the entire user base because they lack this step.

May as well entrenche that model early.

The server names should represent the current state of the game. 5.3 isn't a Live game with regards to pre-alpha. I've tried to think of alternative names for the servers but I can't. 

once people understand the crazy system in place you aren't confused but until then it can be confusing to a person who sees a video or retweet and comes here.

Think about this: Early Access, Live servers, Test servers. That's all the making of a 'this game is almost retail'.


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18 hours ago, KrakkenSmacken said:

Because the need this workflow going forward regardless.  Even after release, they are going to need a "test" environment where players interested in playing the newest content possible have a place to break stuff.  Far too many games launch what is essentially test code on the entire user base because they lack this step.

May as well entrenche that model early.

I mean, I get why. There is just too much confusion and too little population for it. If this is really test access, put everyone on the latest build that needs testing. Not a build we have already moved away from.

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On 1/5/2018 at 8:43 PM, jetah said:

Here's a perfect recent example of using Early Access:

 

Aye, this is the problem entirely. Thankfully this person is doing some digging, but it really shouldn't be necessary.

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"All these meaningless, jargony words that mean nothing to most people are very confusing. Let's use some different meaningless, jargony words that will mean nothing to most people to make things less confusing."

For the record, I agree that less confusing = more gooder and Test Access or similar is less confusing. I just think the whole thing is kind of funny. :3


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Software_release_life_cycle#Pre-alpha <--this is where we are. If your complaint is that the game don't not works good, come back later.

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I mean to me Early Access means still in development.  At which stage isn't part of It, know that you're buying into an unfinished product.  If people make assumptions that it's "nearly complete" because of that that's on them.  Early access means just that, access early while it's incomplete.

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1 hour ago, ArcJurado said:

I mean to me Early Access means still in development.  At which stage isn't part of It, know that you're buying into an unfinished product.  If people make assumptions that it's "nearly complete" because of that that's on them.  Early access means just that, access early while it's incomplete.

Yeah, me too. But I can see why some people might be confused by it, and can summarize that reason in a single word: Steam.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Software_release_life_cycle#Pre-alpha <--this is where we are. If your complaint is that the game don't not works good, come back later.

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