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Crowfall Flies High in March!


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This week, during our monthly player Q&A, Crowfall’s co-founder and Creative Director, J. Todd Coleman, laid out the plan for future development through launch -- and beyond!  With an eye on the future, this list of features and content will (we hope!) fuel Crowfall’s ascent to new heights as the “gold standard” for a new breed of online games where you, the players, take control of the universe.

Click here to review the road map which includes a feature we didn't mention in the Q&A. 

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Glad you finally put out a roadmap! I am happy to see you acknowledge that you are aware of what needs to be done HOWEVER, I really do not think you can launch this game with the currently planned lau

This week, during our monthly player Q&A, Crowfall’s co-founder and Creative Director, J. Todd Coleman, laid out the plan for future development through launch -- and beyond!  With an eye on the f

I'm very pleased to finally have the roadmap available to discuss. I thought the Q&A (even though no Q portion) was the best in years.  Thanks for responding so completely to our requests for a ro

Glad you finally put out a roadmap! I am happy to see you acknowledge that you are aware of what needs to be done HOWEVER, I really do not think you can launch this game with the currently planned launch features. It just won't last. Launch day is when you should expect a rush of players. Players that will want community spaces, that will seek out guilds, friends, and an economy to partake in. If they do not have that on offer, they will not stick to the game.

You brought up Albion as an example of a game that launched with a lower player numbers and over time grew to be as big as it is today. Valid, and yes you can do the same. But Albion had all of those features from day 1 of alpha. Guilds, social hubs, friends lists, marketplaces were all in the game. And by the time it launched, the game had a decent enemy variety, a system for feeding enemies gear without taking away the importance of crafters, multiple types of content for multiple types of players (dungeons, instanced dungeons, guild PvP, zerg PvP, smaller safe PvP, duels, multiple types of PvEvP, meaningful guild and player housing) where all could in some way contribute to the greater game. 

I think the EK improvements listed under Long Term goals, especially taxes, farming, management, trading, portals, visibility and building improvements should be pretty high priority. Improvements to trading like Buy Orders, as well as a guild UI, friend lists and other social features should definitely come before you launch. You get 1 launch rush. Going back to the Albion comparison, it did not gain it's population through updates alone. It went through multiple re-releases (a Steam release and a free to play launch) to reach the numbers it has now. 

I just do not see this game keeping players without having social features that MMOs had at their core for decades. 

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I'm very pleased to finally have the roadmap available to discuss. I thought the Q&A (even though no Q portion) was the best in years.  Thanks for responding so completely to our requests for a road map. 

BUT... Now my guildmates know WHAT to expect, but we still don't know WHEN to expect it. Please don't give us a 'surprise launch'!

Crowfall is a complex game that takes some time to learn. So, players are gonna want to join Beta some 4 to 6 weeks prior to launch so they will have learned the ropes and be ready for a fast start. Now, you could say, hop into beta now and be sure to have learned the game prior to launch, and some of us, including me, have done that. I've been here since Alpha... HOWEVER, many players are afraid of burnout from a long beta.

So, those folks, and that's most of my guildies, NEED an official Heads up announcement before they will join us, the advance team, in beta. If ACE is planning for Live Launch on May first, then please announce that in Mid March.

For those who say, why worry about this? of course they will give us a heads up.  Well, we didn't get more than a few days heads up for Alpha or Beta. For Live Launch we really need it.

Thanks for listening,

Mac

Edited by MacDeath

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Reading over the short term goals, and after reading about how you will launch without even achieving them all... it seems like launch is eminent.

Just wanted to predict the launch will be in April or early May!  😁

Good luck.  We’ll see if they’ve done enough to bring all the quitters back!  If they do come back, hopefully they will stay longer than a few months!

Once the money starts coming in, I really hope you will reinvest it into getting parcel to parcel territory control up and running ASAP, as I believe it’s required for the main game loop to be fun, and to help prevent zergs!

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i believe that if Ace launch this game too early it  will be terrible no one will buy it and you are gonna make your own cripte. PLEASE do not launch this game before the things are mentioned above are ready. Launch day should be a day when you show to the public a game which is a sweet candy for everyone. People started playing his mmo after a year of launch said @jtoddcoleman people should be playing since day 1 should be enjoying since day 1 do not launch the game before it's core features are done and atleast playable until you have a good core design and playable you cannot launch there are a lot of things that are already said about it. i would say the 80% of your roadmap should be done before launch if not this will be the biggest fiasco i've ever seen because look at valheim just as a videogame i'm not comparing anything else than the fact that is a game which have sold millions in 2 weeks everyone knows why it happened and it's just cause the people is talking very well of it. ACE TEAM IF YOU LAUNCH THIS GAME without the short and mid term road map already done you are gonna be in trouble because the launch date is the born day of a game and if it's sick it will be a pain in the ass to bring people and make good reviews from content creators.

 

@jtoddcoleman@thomasblair 

PLAY THE GAME LISTEN TO YOUR HEARTH HONESTLY AND LAUNCH THE GAME WHEN IT SAYS IT'S TIME TO LAUNCH IT. 

ps: Glad to see your last Q&A Please do yourself a favor and keep doing it like this one we all are gonna appreciate it. Good job and have luck / fun!

Edited by EnsaimadaBlanca

                                                 

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1 hour ago, EnsaimadaBlanca said:

i believe that if Ace launch this game too early it  will be terrible no one will buy it and you are gonna make your own cripte. PLEASE do not launch this game before the things are mentioned above are ready. Launch day should be a day when you show to the public a game which is a sweet candy for everyone. People started playing his mmo after a year of launch said @jtoddcoleman people should be playing since day 1 should be enjoying since day 1 do not launch the game before it's core features are done and atleast playable until you have a good core design and playable you cannot launch there are a lot of things that are already said about it. i would say the 80% of your roadmap should be done before launch if not this will be the biggest fiasco i've ever seen because look at valheim just as a videogame i'm not comparing anything else than the fact that is a game which have sold millions in 2 weeks everyone knows why it happened and it's just cause the people is talking very well of it. ACE TEAM IF YOU LAUNCH THIS GAME without the short and mid term road map already done you are gonna be in trouble because the launch date is the born day of a game and if it's sick it will be a pain in the ass to bring people and make good reviews from content creators.

 

@jtoddcoleman@thomasblair 

PLAY THE GAME LISTEN TO YOUR HEARTH HONESTLY AND LAUNCH THE GAME WHEN IT SAYS IT'S TIME TO LAUNCH IT. 

ps: Glad to see your last Q&A Please do yourself a favor and keep doing it like this one we all are gonna appreciate it. Good job and have luck / fun!

I think we can all agree that the calendar doesn't decide when a game is ready, It's ready when it meets exit criteria.

Now, some folks will say that ACE needs to do both the short term list AND the Mid term list prior to launch. If that were the answer it will delay the launch by another year. In the mean time, ACE is burning money with very little income.

I believe many folks have already given up on Crowfall cause it has taken so long. Some of those folks can be brought back if the game is ready soon.

So... Make it ready (Short term list complete) and launch!

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45 minutes ago, MacDeath said:

Now, some folks will say that ACE needs to do both the short term list AND the Mid term list prior to launch. If that were the answer it will delay the launch by another year. In the mean time, ACE is burning money with very little income.

The problem is games need the basic functions listed in the mid term list. Even poor games with tiny development teams manage to do better then ace. Sorry, but the truth is brutal.

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1 hour ago, MacDeath said:

I think we can all agree that the calendar doesn't decide when a game is ready, It's ready when it meets exit criteria.

Now, some folks will say that ACE needs to do both the short term list AND the Mid term list prior to launch. If that were the answer it will delay the launch by another year. In the mean time, ACE is burning money with very little income.

I believe many folks have already given up on Crowfall cause it has taken so long. Some of those folks can be brought back if the game is ready soon.

So... Make it ready (Short term list complete) and launch!

And more, launch in June or July ! Because many mmos will come out (or get a bug update ) at the end at the year .

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4 hours ago, MacDeath said:

I think we can all agree that the calendar doesn't decide when a game is ready, It's ready when it meets exit criteria.

Now, some folks will say that ACE needs to do both the short term list AND the Mid term list prior to launch. If that were the answer it will delay the launch by another year. In the mean time, ACE is burning money with very little income.

I believe many folks have already given up on Crowfall cause it has taken so long. Some of those folks can be brought back if the game is ready soon.

So... Make it ready (Short term list complete) and launch!

I don't fully think that is the case. Crowfall has been getting really bad rep because of how incomplete as a game it is after how long it has spent in development. I think most people just ignore the game because it is not out yet. There also isn't much in terms of marketing or hype right now. I think releasing too early, as in without core functionality being there, will do more harm as the people who have shelved this game will come in, see it's still kinda empty, and leave. They need clear long term goals, a good and natural introduction to PvP, and means of integrating into the community. And due to the temporary nature of campaigns, they just don't have that.

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They game took to long to actually launch and be completed. Re leveling multiple times while waiting for the game to become complete after this long has made the game boring and lose its hype. Patience is one thing but after so long and it being no where near complete you just move on, if you’re waiting for a game. 

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16 minutes ago, LiquidSabotage said:

They game took to long to actually launch and be completed. Re leveling multiple times while waiting for the game to become complete after this long has made the game boring and lose its hype. Patience is one thing but after so long and it being no where near complete you just move on, if you’re waiting for a game. 

Yep, may as well just check it out at launch rather than burning yourself out testing.

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In-game Guild system (not noted on the Roadmap, but a post-launch priority

Lack of this major feature will certainly be problematic. There are enough games with functioning in-game guild systems, guild banks, etc, that this is really not optional for post-release. This is not a new MMORPG feature, and for the entirety of CF development, there has always been a major emphasis on Guild mechanics.

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8 minutes ago, Padishah said:

Lack of this major feature will certainly be problematic.

What is the impact of not having in-game guild management at launch? It seems like a quality-of-life improvement that is significantly lower in priority than fixing core game loop issues. Can't you just open the website?

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12 minutes ago, Padishah said:

guild banks

Guild banks already exist in the form of Keep/Castle chests in campaign and Noble/Public chests in EKs. These can certainly be improved, but they do serve their functions currently. It is mildly problematic for small guilds in campaign without a keep, however. 

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1 hour ago, Alot said:

What is the impact of not having in-game guild management at launch? It seems like a quality-of-life improvement that is significantly lower in priority than fixing core game loop issues. Can't you just open the website?

There are some major issues here:

1) A new player who has just started will look in game, see that there is not a guild interface in game and potentially wrongfully assume there are no guilds in the game full stop. 

2) The lack of in game tools means you actively have to leave the game to find, join and manage guilds. Having this sort of interruption to the game flow is bad for player retention.

3) Having to go to a separate interface for managing guilds in general is just a drag that will make guild play feel less integral to the game and more as a secondary feature. 

4) I do not think I can name a single MMO out there that is missing this functionality. It's just an expectation to be able to press G and see a guild menu.

 

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3 minutes ago, Zastier said:

There are some major issues here:

1) A new player who has just started will look in game, see that there is not a guild interface in game and potentially wrongfully assume there are no guilds in the game full stop. 

2) The lack of in game tools means you actively have to leave the game to find, join and manage guilds. Having this sort of interruption to the game flow is bad for player retention.

3) Having to go to a separate interface for managing guilds in general is just a drag that will make guild play feel less integral to the game and more as a secondary feature. 

4) I do not think I can name a single MMO out there that is missing this functionality. It's just an expectation to be able to press G and see a guild menu.

 

These all seem like quality of life improvements. They do not prevent the player from doing something they would otherwise need to do and do not impact the core game flow. They just require a little bit of extra effort on the part of players for events that occur rarely. 

I think retention will be impacted significantly more if core game features are missing or unpolished or performance is lacking at launch. 

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On 3/3/2021 at 4:45 PM, Zastier said:

I think the EK improvements listed under Long Term goals, especially taxes, farming, management, trading, portals, visibility and building improvements should be pretty high priority.

EKs have taken a back seat in their design so continuing to invest in them at this point is a distraction. I would also love to see some of these changes, but they are not necessary for launch and do not have a significant impact on current game play. 

Quote

 

Improvements to trading like Buy Orders,

This is the one area I really agree with you. The economic system at present is particularly weak and that is going to be problematic. Players can band-aid over this to some extent by creating third-party tools but it's never going to be as effective as an in-game solution. 

Quote

as well as a guild UI, friend lists and other social features should definitely come before you launch.

Just re-iterating, these are nice-to-haves in my opinion. They would be great, but don't inhibit the core game flow. We have Discord for social features. 

Quote

You get 1 launch rush. Going back to the Albion comparison, it did not gain it's population through updates alone. It went through multiple re-releases (a Steam release and a free to play launch) to reach the numbers it has now. 

Albion's re-releases were major updates. The first major uptick in population was for the f2p release and the more recent one was around additional language support and mobile. I agree with you that launch is important, but it's not a deal breaker, as Albion proved out.

The important things for ArtCraft between now and launch are to ruthlessly cut scope, prioritize core features and performance, and polish. They need to make sure that crafting and the economy are in good shape and campaigns work, because you can't undo or roll those things back. The nice-to-haves can come later, either in any time remaining pre-launch after everything integral is complete or post-launch. 

Edited by Alot
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