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Nickname Scheherazade
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Signed On Feb 28, 2001, 23:01
Total Comments 242 (Novice)
User ID 9185
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News Comments > Oculus Rift Preorders Wednesday
27. Re: Oculus Rift Preorders Wednesday Jan 4, 2016, 19:13 Scheherazade
HorrorScope wrote on Jan 4, 2016, 17:55:
The Pyro wrote on Jan 4, 2016, 17:33:
Placid wrote on Jan 4, 2016, 17:10:
About how much will the Oculus Rift cost?

That's the big question... $400 is probably on the low side, though hopefully it's in the ball park. The bigger cost is the fancy PC you need to run it. You need a beefy video card (GTX 970 at the minimum) because VR requires high refresh rates and renders two images (one for each eye) at the same time, so it's also more than double the number of pixels of a 1080p display.

Older games might not need such beefy hardware, of course, but then they're also less likely to have great VR support to begin with.

It isn't that many more pixels than a 1080p display. Check resolution then do math. That said, I'd think a 970 is a safe bottom end at this time. But if they make cartoon games like Lucky's Palm... I'm sure it's that way for a reason. To keep frames high.

Part of their re-scaling system involves rendering to double-pixel rez, and then sub sampling (as per nyquist requirements, you need twice as many samples as your reconstructed frequency).

That said, you still can't avoid 'in between pixels' limitations, where 1 pixel wide features that end in between pixels end up 'Fd in the A' IQ wise.

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News Comments > Oculus Rift Preorders Wednesday
15. Re: Oculus Rift Preorders Wednesday Jan 4, 2016, 17:11 Scheherazade
Rossafur wrote on Jan 4, 2016, 16:52:
I've been jonesing for this to make my return to flight sims (Falcon 4.0 and MechWarrior 2 for the S3 Virge were the first Windows PC games I played way back as a kid) as I'm spending a fortune crashing my RC aircraft over and over, but reading about the 90 FPS it requires has me worried...

I'm still rocking a I-7 2600K @ 3.4GHZ (but smart-clocked or whatever to 4.4GHZ with the ASUS app) for years now, but with 8gb RAM and a GTX 970 I have yet to feel the need to upgrade my CPU... Is this going to be what requires it?

DK2 (which is most of the rez of CV) is terrible for flight sims of 'modern' aircraft - because the hud is unreadable. None of the numbers are legible (unless you move your face significantly forward to get closer to them). Simply not enough dots across that wide of an FOV to resolve one or two pixel wide symbology. This is compounded by the image shifting/scaling that happens to realign chromatic aberration (work around needed to compensate for the simple single stage lens).

I posted a link to this before, take a look. The blurriness is not youtube compression - it's like that normally.

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News Comments > New Star Citizen Alpha
43. Re: New Star Citizen Alpha Dec 27, 2015, 20:38 Scheherazade
Kalthorn wrote on Dec 26, 2015, 20:14:
Scheherazade wrote on Dec 26, 2015, 17:31:

FYI, in software dev. The latest non-daily release is labelled "stable".

It's convention to call it " stable", likely stemming from how 'at the time that they release it' its the most stable of the recent dailies.

However, the title "stable" is not a description of the software's actual stability or instability - it just means 'not a daily'.

This isn't a CIG thing, its a naming convention throughout software dev.

FYI, not true at all. Stable means stable. Stable builds receive more testing and remain in place through many daily builds. It's not merely some slightly older build.

If you are actually in software development and follow this practice then I fear for your customers and you would be doing a service to the public to name your employer.

No such thing. Stable is a name forged in hope and expectation, and with time always turned into a lie.

You can test all you want, and you can have a great impression of whatever build you elect to be your latest 'stable'. Regardless, over time bugs will be encountered and bug fixes will make their way into newer builds. Progress will inevitably leave 'stable' less stable than current - barring new broken features. It's the very nature of progress.

Like I said, stable is 'the most stable build at the time it is released' - but time moves on, and what was once considered a good build will be looked back on as crap compared to newer builds.

Hence the redhat example. The [relatively] ancient stable releases are more unstable/broken than the free and more often updated fedora that redhat branches from. It's a case where 'stable' just means 'what is broken is well understood and your kickstart scripts that patch/fix crap will remain valid for a long time because the next stable isn't coming to fix what is broke for a long while'. If you want less headaches, you're better off with the bugfixed fedora releases than the old busted redhat 'stable'.

Also, its a given that 'testing' is how you judge the stability of a build. Unless you're doing some sorta faith based coding...


This comment was edited on Dec 27, 2015, 20:48.
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News Comments > New Star Citizen Alpha
29. Re: New Star Citizen Alpha Dec 26, 2015, 17:31 Scheherazade
Kosumo wrote on Dec 26, 2015, 15:42:
Scheherazade, you contradict yourself just like how RSI does.

You say you can play 2.1 without crashes, you say it is more stable than 2.0, you then go on to say PTU is a snapshot and non-PTU (2.0) is stable. Then go on to explain that that is not always true.

That's all fine, but why then would they release it to a wider player base? YOLO is a dumb reason for anything.

By them opening it to a wider player base, and baiting them in with the mention of the Freelance, they are undermining them self's.

They even say how the PTU server are more restricted, yet here they are enticing more players to give it a try, hince, making those who would use it for bug hunting potential having to wait/miss out.

This is poor management.

As to the Star Marine issue, why then did they make the effort (which they clearly did, at some expense)?

So you don't see a need for Star Marine, well at some point Chris Roberts did - and I say that point was so that they could work on that aspect of the FPS gameplay, he was selling it up like a tactical squad shooter like SWAT or something.

I have only watched a few (maybe 90 mins total) videos of the 2.0 since it came out - I've been away working a lot - but I've yet to see any footage of people ingaging in any kind of FPS play that is anything like what Chris Roberts was talking about a year ago, in fact, I've seen no FPS shoot outs. At best I've seen a person shot their gun!

How are they going to develop their FPS gameplay if no one is testing it?

As to Arena Commander, did they use that to help refine the space fighting because from all I ever seen (it was like turrents in space, lame as) and read, very few people where happy with it and thing that people complained/disliked about it to CIG where not addressed. It was nothing more than a place where people could accutly use their internet spaceships, therefore helping to sell internet spaceships. Nothing more.

FYI, in software dev. The latest non-daily release is labelled "stable".

It's convention to call it " stable", likely stemming from how 'at the time that they release it' its the most stable of the recent dailies.

However, the title "stable" is not a description of the software's actual stability or instability - it just means 'not a daily'.

This isn't a CIG thing, its a naming convention throughout software dev.

In actuality, its common for current "daily" releases to have more bug fixes and more actual stability than the the older "stable" releases.

Keep that in mind when reading my post, it should help you understand it better.

As per star marine, AFAIK they were gonna use it to demo fps prior to fps working in the universe (expecting the universe to take much longer?). Clearly the universe fps beat star marine to the punch.


This comment was edited on Dec 26, 2015, 17:38.
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News Comments > New Star Citizen Alpha
27. Re: New Star Citizen Alpha Dec 26, 2015, 14:52 Scheherazade
DNF comparisons are out of context.

DNF was a victim of rapid technological progress outpacing its own goals.

They wanted DNF to be so far ahead of the pack when it comes out that it would be an even bigger hit than Duke3D.

That decade had silly fast progress. Every other year was a night and day change in graphics.

From Doom to COD/HL2 was a span of ~10years... and DNF was pushing a multi year dev cycle.

At that time, if you tried to make a game with more than a 1 or 2 year dev cycle, it would look ancient by the time it was out.

By the time they would finish making all the DNF content, it would look old. Then they would start making new content, and again by the time they finished it would look old. They were in a death spiral that burned through all of their money - but it's a death spiral that could only exist within that decade.

Now that graphics and tech have stagnated, and change is slow, the very same development cycle that failed DNF in the 90s would today bring the game to completion without needing any reboots mid dev.


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News Comments > New Star Citizen Alpha
24. Re: New Star Citizen Alpha Dec 26, 2015, 13:53 Scheherazade
Kosumo wrote on Dec 26, 2015, 01:15:
I did not twist his words, those are two quotes straight form the announcement.

Can't you read? (really - who am I to say that, I'm shit at reading! )

The way I read that announcement (above, in the topic of the thread) is they are trying to build excitement for that new release of Star Citizen Alpha 2.1.0.

Fair enough.

They state how "We know some of you really want to check out the flight-ready Freelancer", which people have paid money for ($125usd - a lot of money, more than a cupply of completed AAA games).

They are totally telling those people that they can!

They then, a few pharagraphs later say "PTU is not about “early access” to content; it’s intended for actual testing of features, content, and updates"

It's classic RSI double speak.

The "2.0 Alpha" is far from stable, yet here they are rolling out a test "2.1.0 Alpha" to the PTU with more content in it rather than getting what they have got, "2.0" more stable.

It's the continuing of disorganized production.

And the 'tease' of the Freelancer is just there to keep people putting more money into it.

Case in point - Star Marine - they did not say nothing about it even after it was months behind when they said it was to come out as a "module", when they did say something it was "days not months" then after months its, 'oh, yeah, well not now, we are changing plans, its part of 2.0 now!'

Deceptive marketing all the way.

If they where really just after feed back form the PTU, why not keep the numbers allowed into the PTU down like they did before? Just those who do give them feed back? - Cos they want to hype with another ship being added to game.

When can people invite other people into their hangars? That was ment to happen years ago - that's why people brought stuff to put in their hangars so that when they invited people into them, they could show off, now they just talk about what is in their hangars or make youtube videos about it.

The list goes on.

What about when Chris was saying more money would help to get more in game without it slowing down the rate at which it would be made?

I'm not twisting anybodies words, Chris Roberts is twisting what he says to be everything to everyone while having no plan of how he is going to make it happen.

He just wants your money so he can spend it on playing Hollywood director with his wantabe actress wife.

His live stream video of him playing the game a few days ago says it all.

2.1 is more stable than 2.0. I can play 2.1 without crashes. 2.0 CTDs inside of 5 mins.

PTU goes out first to players who have actively been submitting bug reports, and whoever else there may be room for within their desired PTU initial population. It's been like that for a while. Given that it's Xmas break, I'm not surprised they just said yolo everyone aboard.

PTU is a snapshot, and non-PTU is stable. (Those are titles. Like with all dev, dailies can include bug fixes that make them more stable than the 'stable' branch - just look at the mess that is redhat, with the stable branch being years old shit compared to the dev)

In any case, star marine is OBE. It was meant to be a way to play fps before combined fps+flight are in one game mode. Now that you can get in and out of your ship all you wish in the test universe, I don't see a need for star marine. They can just add more fps missions/content into the universe. No need for an fps sandbox anymore. I wouldn't be surprised if they shitcan it... But also wouldn't be surprised if they keep it as a game-within-a-game like arena commander.


This comment was edited on Dec 26, 2015, 13:59.
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News Comments > New Star Citizen Alpha
23. Re: New Star Citizen Alpha Dec 26, 2015, 13:41 Scheherazade

This is why you do a demo with an older tested system - preferably the one normally used by the demo player (so none of his settings that he's used to are missing).

Watching them do a public demo on a freshly installed system is facepalm. Such risk.

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News Comments > Codemasters Closes Malta Studio
6. Re: Codemasters Closes Malta Studio Nov 25, 2015, 14:44 Scheherazade
Well, foreign, but mostly so by which government gets to tax within which lines on the map.

The southern end of UKR was Russia proper just a few decades ago, and the people actually living there are still Russian citizens (Either born there while the area was still Russia, or children of those who were). They speak Russian, their street and city names are in Russian, and they have no historical loyalty to UKR, and they've been right where they are for generations.
Only thing that changed was a line on the map that some drunk politicians redrew for a laugh.

Things get more complicated with the 'new economy'.
Eastern UKR is largely agrarian, and in the olden days (when they were part of the USSR days - i.e. the 'USA of eastern Europe/Asia') farmers had good wages mandated by the state. People living there remember a time when life was easy/low stress (financially speaking).
Nowadays, with capitalism, they are on the bottom rung of the food supply chain (i.e. not a value added element, but a pure raw material supplier). This means strong downward price pressures, lesser relative incomes, greater expenses, higher stress, and overall decline in quality of life.
A lot of people there miss the old ways, and would like to go back. They see alignment with Russia as some sort of stepping stone towards a revival of their region.

The economic hardship was bad enough, but when UKR government started to make anti-minority law changes that put pressure on Russian speaking areas (essentially outlawing Russian language), things basically boiled over.

Sure, the Russian involvement is greater than they admit - but at the same time UKR isn't the sort of pure victim that the US/UKR govt/Western Europe paints it as in the media. It's far closer to a civil war than an invasion. Russia is feeding arms to those they sympathize with, Europe is feeding arms to those they sympathize with, and both are feigning ignorance and pointing fingers.

Only reason Europe cares is because it's tapped out on agricultural land, and doesn't want a large food producer moving outside of their sphere of influence.


Dacron wrote on Nov 25, 2015, 13:54:
El Pit wrote on Nov 25, 2015, 13:06:

And the Ukraine has of course not been invaded. Putin has made clear very often that no Russian troops are involved. Only Russian "volunteers" join the separatists and take their tanks and weapons with them like on a holiday. In Russia, soldiers are allowed to take their tanks with them on a vacation. It's a totally peaceful and democratic liberation of the parts of the Ukraine with oil and other resources.

Agreed. People need to realize that having foreign troops, with foreign equipment on your soil, while launching artillery strikes from the country the troops/supplies originated from is NOT an invasion.

It's just boys being boys, they're just blowing off steam! And their economy...

This comment was edited on Nov 25, 2015, 14:55.
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News Comments > DOOM Alpha Video
31. Re: DOOM Alpha Video Oct 24, 2015, 00:27 Scheherazade
SirKnight wrote on Oct 23, 2015, 01:23:
OK played it for 30 minutes.

The game gives me an Unreal Tournament feel kind of.

Looks very good. Very little texture paging due to the mega texture. It's still there but not as crazy as Rage.

The player is not slow as molasses like in Doom 3, but could be a bit quicker. Quake 3 speed would be nice. There is no run key that I could find.

My biggest gripe, and hopefully this is just one game mode that will be like this, is you only carry TWO weapons and one equipment (grenade or teleporter) depending on your loadout. This loadout thing is very CoD and it annoys me. The weapons should be sprinkled around the map and you use what you pick up...all of them if you can manage it.

The demon possession thing is interesting, but I feel could be better in a more open map.

Doom3 player movement was quite fast compared to this - you just had to do the usual quake/id bunnyhopping to build up speed.


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News Comments > DOOM Alpha Video
30. Re: DOOM Alpha Video Oct 24, 2015, 00:20 Scheherazade
Anyone know where you leave feedback for this thing?

A) No bunny hopping = feels so goddam slow.

B) ~100 ms input lag. Painful and literally disorienting.

C) Weapon design is off.

- Rocket damage is ~2/3 of what normal ID rocket damage is
- Plasma is right on
- SS feels weak. Definitely not doom2 level damage
- Vortex rifle is a rail gun equivalent, but feels like ~half normal rail damage
- Static cannon is like a charging railgun, damage is ok, but what use is it? Not sure where this fits in.
- Repeater is good. Basically a cross between the MG and Chaingun, but with 3 round burst and more damage per round than ID usual. All in all a good feeling weapon.
- BFG equivalent is just a rocket launcher like gun with good damage and splash. k.

Classically the guns would suit situations.

- SS is up close and around corner ambush (Current SS is weak for the task)

- MG/CG is usually long range precise spam/mid range precise spam. (currently decent with the Repeater)

- RL is a splash denial weapon that punishes predictable movement (current splash bounce is small, and damage is so low that it's not worth using versus say a plasma at any ranger where RL stands a chance at hitting)

- Railgun classically was for limited exposure flick shots at range. Often setting up a spam gun for a finishing spray. (Current RL (Vortex RIfle) does maybe around 30% health damage on an unstacked player. With the recharge delay, you have no reason to use the Vortex over the Repeater (Repeater burst is about as good, but less delay)).

- Plasma was classically for hallway denial. Saturating a straight stretch to prevent a chaser from closing on you. Or to momentarily lock down a pathway with saturated bolts. (The current Plasma rifle does this well, with similar effective damage to what you saw in D3.)

- Static cannon is just... I don't even know. A rail that slowly charges so long as you keep moving (Maybe half a life worth of damage at full charge). Every shot fully depletes the charge. Then you run around like a tard till it recharges enough to be worth shooting. I can see it being a good opener - but with the weapon switch delay and just ok damage, you're better off just having your follow up gun in hand.

All in all, a good start.

But if bunny hopping stays out (and they don't double player speed), then this is gonna be a snore fest.

The input lag I assume will just get fixed... unless they are of the opinion that it's fine (A-la the battlefield and unreal engine input lag mess). In which case, GG. I'd rather go play quakelive or zdaemon.

God, I hate to say it, but it feels CODified.
At least they have health/ammo pickups (albeit players drop powerups on death, which is a bit soft).
Just the slow player movement is what kills me.
Starting with guns makes it impossible to meta your opponent by denying them the respawns of their favorite guns.
Limited 'basic' powerups makes stack denial less of an issue.
Feels wrong, tbh. Definitely not a quake/doom successor in its current state. More like a UT reskin mod.


This comment was edited on Oct 24, 2015, 00:32.
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News Comments > Star Citizen Social Module Released
193. Re: Star Citizen Social Module Released Sep 3, 2015, 14:56 Scheherazade
RedEye9 wrote on Sep 3, 2015, 14:45:
Scheherazade wrote on Sep 3, 2015, 13:00:
However, times have changed, and I think that if DNF were to begin dev these days, with how slowly graphics are changing, I bet they would have finished just fine with the engine they started with, and still meet the 'latest and greatest' requirement.

Sets in darkened corner, muttering to self "If only there was a Duke Nukem re-imagined like Black Mesa's Half-Life."

"The problem was that Reloaded, in its then present state, was both a prettier and better game than Forever was. So they [Gearbox] could under no circumstances allow us [Interceptor] to publish it, show it, or do anything at all with it, because it would destroy the sales-opportunities they had left in Forever."

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News Comments > Star Citizen Social Module Released
191. Re: Star Citizen Social Module Released Sep 3, 2015, 13:04 Scheherazade
RedEye9 wrote on Sep 3, 2015, 11:00:
SC does not fall under the definition of either ponzi scheme or pyramid scheme. We need a new term.
Feel free to add your own.

Roberts Scheme
Kickstarter Scheme
Cig Scheme
BDCSE (Best Damn Crowdfunding Scheme Ever) frequently confused with
BDKSE (Best Damn Kickstarter Scheme Ever)

OK, this post made me smile.

My vote is for "BDCSE".

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News Comments > Star Citizen Social Module Released
190. Re: Star Citizen Social Module Released Sep 3, 2015, 13:00 Scheherazade
Kosumo wrote on Sep 3, 2015, 05:59:
Thanks for your reply.

So you would agree that so far there has been no particular exceptional gameplay of any kind?

To me, that is what he should have been aiming for and could have done at a much more lower level of 'fidelity' in line with his original pitch for the game. (by lower level, it still would have been graphical nice, just not over the top - his making this for the future PC as apposed to the current PC)

By him talking this up, he has only boxed himself into a corner.

The whole getting out of you ship and walking to the bar will most likely get bland very quickly no matter now much 'fidelity' it has. He is shooting for a movie like experance when really he should be try to make a great game experience (of which he has shown nothing of so far)

The whole 'fidelity' thing is totally over blown, it's now a rod for his back that is really not important for a BDSSE - it's more a sign of how he wish he was making movies.

Minecraft, Team Fortress 2, Papers Please, Hotline Miami and many other games show that it's the gameplay that rules.

I'm don't really care that much either way because although I don't really get into space sims, I have enjoyed some over the years because I'm a gamer and like to try diffent game. (Elite, Freelance). What I don't like is how I believe that he has put getting more money form promising thing to people which I don't believe he can delivied. (It's Faith based)

It's like other game makers form the past who made great games but can't repeat it now. Times have changed and just because people have nostailga for your old games, does not mean that you can make something as relevant again. There is a whole list of those people whom I can't really be bother listing but I'm sure you know the type.

Duke Nukem 3d was a great game, the same guys with all that money could not make anything close to it as time went on.

I agree.
My top 2 played games on steam are : War Thunder, Dungeon Defenders
Because I liked the core game mechanics enough to enjoy repeating it.

I'm hopeful that after SC gets balanced, the combat will be more fun. I really liked WC3 combat, and there's not a lot to a space shooter at its core. Just give me shit to pew pew at, without some imba b.s. to ruin it.

Mass effect 2 got rid of the running around between your ship and location. As annoying as it was in ME1, I missed doing it. ME1 just felt better in that regard - it was a good annoyance. Getting rid of it made ME2 feel a bit more hollow (even though the gameplay itself was better).

DNF is a great example of refactoring yourself to death.
It's an interesting case, because it was developed at a time when engines were changing night and day year to year. You basically couldn't go a year without some amazing leap in graphics.
DNF was committed to being 'the latest and greatest', and in that kind of environment, they just couldn't finish development before newer tech would arrive and make the game look old. So they started over, again and again.
However, times have changed, and I think that if DNF were to begin dev these days, with how slowly graphics are changing, I bet they would have finished just fine with the engine they started with, and still meet the 'latest and greatest' requirement.


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News Comments > Star Citizen Social Module Released
182. Re: Star Citizen Social Module Released Sep 3, 2015, 05:36 Scheherazade
Kxmode wrote on Sep 3, 2015, 03:34:
Kosumo wrote on Sep 3, 2015, 02:42:
Your solar panel example is one (a silly, computer programmer) way of achieving that goal.

On my list of how some irrational White Knights handle Star Citizen criticisms comparing Star Citizen to Solar Panel technology would fall under 1, 2, 9, 14 and probably a few more. Making up 500 employees would fall under 19 and 32. And the whole post falls under 30. Basically it's a massive cacophony of pure irrationality.

Besides all that it is pretty amazing for the details.

- Never compared SC to solar technology. (unrelated to SC example of the nature of development's work vs delivery schedules)

- Never said CIG had 500 employees (said "500 people paid for by SC cash" - i.e. all people, inc. contractors. DSmart even chimed in on this point.)

- The post was not made to rationalize anything, and hence had no rationale to be irrational about. It was an illustration of the kinds of development aspects that have to be ignored in order to make the claim that what is included in AC is /everything/ that has been worked on.

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News Comments > Star Citizen Social Module Released
181. Re: Star Citizen Social Module Released Sep 3, 2015, 05:25 Scheherazade
Kosumo wrote on Sep 3, 2015, 02:42:
That all nice and dandy there Scheherazade, but it's not the only way things are done. Your solar panel example is one (a silly, computer programmer) way of achieving that goal. My best mate of 27 years who owns a persition (high end) engineering company that has a staff of about 50 who makes machines that make and package food stuff all over the world would be able to tell you at the start how long the job will take, how much it will cost - with the understanding of the problems that may arise.

Why can't Chris Roberts estimate the time that this project will take with any kind of accuracy?

How about they make all those 'locations' then work on your steps 2&3 only for Chris to then turn around and want to change those 'locations' - like how they have redone some ships multipy times? That's what I think is happening here, just like on Chris projects in the past. He is undisaplied. In this case with 'pre-order pledge' money.

Also, what about your claims of those 500 people working on it? You got anything to back that up/explain it?

The fact that you agree that they need to keep getting in more funds only goes to show how Derek is right when he points to it being like a Ponzi scheme - they have use early backer money to make/make concepts of ships to sell to get more money. A very scummy way to fund development. He should have taken the early 20 - 50 million and made a more simple, lest 'fidelity' game to show that he can make a fun game. As it is, all he is really doing is making pretty graphics with not solid gameplay to back any of it up.

The BDSSE will be because of the gameplay, not because of the graphics.

Can you point to him having shown any great gameplay yet?

Despite him going on that the Star Marine FPS module is being held up because of the networking/animaions, I don't believe him, I recon that he knows that the gameplay of the module is what is really lacking and he is trying to buy time in the hope of being able to get some kind of FPS that has some character to it that delivers more than just a simple counter strike in space knock off.

I don't believe he understands how to do this - I'm sure he has a vision of what it should be - and that vision is probly quite cool for the style he is after. I just don't think it's as easy to do as he thought it would be.

I could go on (as I do) but at this point I will just hit the ball back to the other side of the court.

The solar panel example is not one of predicting schedule.
It's a contrived example of how the work is done linearly, but the accomplished line items are delivered exponentially at the end.
Point being that non-developers expect line items to be delivered linearly, as if the quantity of delivered features should be in proportion to time spent.
(No relevance to CR's time estimation. No claim that this arbitrary example is the only/best/optimal way to do this arbitrary task.)

I suspect all the re-doing of ships as art technical requirements changed is what tempered their enthusiasm for adding locations up front.

I don't claim that the 500 employees are working on locations.
I state that you can't disqualify the possibility that they are - which is a prerequisite to saying that nothing else has gotten done other than what you see in AC.
(That said, there are a lot of artists on staff, and they're doing *something*. There are only so many tasks.)

A ponzi scheme is one where earlier investors are repaid by money provided by newer investors.
By definition, wholly unrelated to SC.

Gameplay wise, I have no particularly exceptional examples. While I like the recent flight mechanics changes, their refusal to balance 'what they have' creates a shit fest in DM. Basically people spam 1 particular missile type. They say they will balance it later when more combat features are in - however I think it makes for a crap demo in the mean time. I can't actually sit anyone down to play AC for the purpose of enticing them, on account of the shit balance.

FPS wise, maybe. I have no reason to distrust CR regarding networking issues - for if you played AC a little while ago you'd know they were quite real.
That said, I don't think anyone can make a whiz-bang FPS these days. All the ideas are played out. I get more fun nowadays from zdaemon than any recent FPS. I'm not actually expecting CR (or anyone) to blow me away re. FPS. So sure, I'll go along with it most likely being a tired rehash.
One excuse could be that the FPS serves the purpose of 'gluing' game elements. Transitioning from ship to port, via controlled 1st person, instead of teleporting to a slide show a-la WC privateer. Stealing ships via boarding party, instead of a magic tractor beam. etc.

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News Comments > Star Citizen Social Module Released
178. Re: Star Citizen Social Module Released Sep 3, 2015, 01:16 Scheherazade
jdreyer wrote on Sep 2, 2015, 20:12:
Scheherazade wrote on Sep 2, 2015, 14:00:
Of the 500 people paid for by SC cash, what makes you so sure that none of them are making content for those other 98 systems?
When have you not seen Chris gleefully show off a work in progress (SQ42 excepted)? If they had it, we would have seen it. Also, given all the criticism he's come under this summer, it's inconceivable he wouldn't allay people's fears by showing off what they've accomplished so far.

What makes you so sure that all the content they have created toward the final game, is all contained within the ArenaCommander&ArcCorp demo?
So, it's all in there but it's hidden? I suppose that it's big enough at 35 GB or whatever it's up to these days. Still, wouldn't hackers have pulled all the files out? All that stuff would be all over the web.

*(If Chris hadn't been showing some stuff off, you wouldn't know it. So you can't say that he has been showing everything off)
*(The sentence meant the opposite of how you took it. I.E. What evidence is there that all content CIG has in house has been put into the AC release? - answer: there is no evidence, one way or the other. So you can't assert that AC is definitively everything.)

The point I'm getting at is one that a software dev would recognize - one which dsmart knows but omits to mention, in favor of stoking dissent from the unaware.

I'll give a practical example.

If you want a product that does these 3 things :
1) moves a solar panel to follow the sun
2) Parks the panel at night
3) Parks the panel during hail

You would have a product with 3 features.

If someone gives you an estimate that it will take 3 months to make, which of these 2 scenarios would you expect?
(Not saying it's a 3 month task, it's just for example's sake)

A) 1 moth passes, feature (1) comes online. 1 more month passes, feature (2) comes online. 1 more month passes, feature (3) comes online.

B) 2.5 months pass, features (1)&(2) come online. 0.5 more months pass, feature (3) comes online.

A person naive to development would assume scenario (A).
However, the reality is that scenario (B) would happen.

The developer would need to:
- Get an objective compute system (maybe an AVR32 board or something).
- Get encoders, which require some interface (serial or DA, etc).
- Write software to read the interface and get the encoder messages.
- Interpret the grayscale or whatever to get a value.
- Mount the encoder(s) to a pair of gimbal axes (pitch & roll)
- Get some actuators
- Get an appropriate motor control unit for the actuators, which require some interface (serial, DA, etc).
- Wire it up, and write software to send commands down that interface.
- Create a routine that does some closure onto a desired pose. Eg. a PID loop or something that would drive the actuators to move the gimbal, such that the encoder reading is that which you desire.
- Use some DA device to read the DC voltage supplied by the panel, via whatever discrete channel you connect it with your board.
- Write a routine that can sweep the panel in a circle pattern, and detect which point along the circle the voltage reading was highest.
- Have that routine re-center the panel and re-run the parttern - effectively walking the panel onto the orientation with most supplied energy.
- Have the routine repeat this action periodically, to 'follow' the sun.
- Take a look at your hardware, and make some nice looking case for it, and pack it up in an environmentally sealed manner.
*** You now blew a bunch of time, and have just only now demonstrated feature (1).
- Add a case where if the voltate falls below some threshold, you move the panel to a stow position.
*** 2 minutes later, you now have feature (2)
- (Open a weather web site, and enter your zip code. Make note of the URL.)
- (Find the text that describes today's weather. Make note of it in firefox inspector.)
- At your device, open a TCP connection to that weather web site, and do an http request patterned like a URL with your zip code in it.
- Dump the HTML string that comes back, and parse it for the section with the day's weather.
- Search that section for the word 'hail' without regard to caps.
- Return 'is hailing' if that section has the word hail. Else not hailing.
- Write a routine that checks for hailing once every 30 mins, and parks the panel if it's true.
*** You now have feature (3).

Basically, for a long while, you do work, but there is nothing to show for it.
2 of 3 months into the project, if someone asked for a demo, you'd only have a mess of wires, and some twitching bits.
Then suddenly there are some features, and next thing you know, you're done.

How this pertains to SC is like so:

During dev, you have code branches.
Different folks doing different things.

One would generally have a release branch, which is the one you get to play with.

More branches for things like : FPS, Space combat, Mission system, AI development, matchmaker development, location development, etc.
Each of those would have lots of little micro branches for each open ticket or issue that's been assigned to one dev or another.
These are constantly being merged, deconflicted, and bubbled up to a higher level.

What ends up being published to the release branch, is whatever features are cherry picked as being 'bug free enough for folks to play with, and are politically useful for presentation purposes'.

You basically have a swirling mass of in-flux code being worked on, and you only get to see the bits that are stable enough and cool enough to make a nice demo.

The reason why most of the dev code is useless for a demo, is because most code is practically useless until it's nearing completion.

If you want to demo 'getting a mission at a bar, and flying it', you need:
1) NPC chat working
- Depends on a system where you can contextually 'use' an AI, and it will lead to a dialog.
- Depends on a dialog menu system
- Depends on triggering aniomation/sound loops and camera changes based on dialog selections
- Depends on a stateful conversation system (AI knows what you were talking about earlier if you walk away and return)
2) Mission creation working
- Depends on a dynamic content creation system, where your next take off will have the targets required to complete am mission spawned into your system.
- Depends on kill vs mission requirements accounting system (so if you have N missions, and each require you kill X amount of baddy Y, when you kill a baddy Y, it counts towards completing whatever missions)

You can have 3 of 4 items in section (1) complete, and the remaining 50% done. And maybe both items in section 2 75% complete.
And... you have zero to show for it. Because you can't demo 'getting a mission at a bar and flying it'.

So you'll never see all that code merged into (or simply exposed) to the player, because it wouldn't actually _do_ anything.

Furthermore, content is as much an anchor as it is a show of progress.

For example, if you want to add a location, you need to:
1) Make the 3d model of the location (essentially 99% of the art labor)
2) Have a technical artist prep it
3) Have some engineer add the metadata making it loaded and accessible from some entry point.

You can do step (1) for 100 systems - and that's most of the content creation labor - but none of it is available to play with.

You need to do steps 2 & 3 to get it into the game.
Step 2 often involves things like chopping it up into sections, so you can put them into a grid, and do load on demand.
Step 3 is often XML edits.

Steps 2 & 3 are fine. But they are risky.

For if you do something that requires the art to change, you have to repeat steps 2&3.
Like if your grid system changes, and you need the location cut into different sizes.
Or you need to add nav points for AI into the original map.
Or you need to alter the original map to accept a new pre-fab fixture that is dynamically spawned, and needs to not clip into a wall.

Making that change to the orignal art requires someone to go repeat step 2.
Then sometimes, step 3 has to be re-done too.

So if you make 100 locations, and you wait to integrate them till late in dev, the odds of needing to redo steps 2&3 are low.

If you integrate those locations early, you will likely need to redo steps 2&3 a few times. And if you have to do steps 2&3 a few times for 100 systems, you will blow a ton of time and money.
So instead, you wait to integrate the assets until late in dev.

(This is likely why you see CIG state they would rather fully flesh out one system before adding more. Note that 'adding' more systems doesn't have to mean *beginning* to overall work on them. It at least means *finishing* overall work on them (doing steps 2&3 to tie the assets into the game). You can make the art for many systems before you 'add' anything to the game.)

Development is not like building a brick house. You don't see it go up all nicely and proportionately to the work done. For most of the time, there's simply nothing to show for it.
In any case, people familiar with dev already know this. I'm rather certain that DSmart knows this. Which is why I find his complaints disingenuous, and frankly, pandering to the angst of folks who don't know any better. (This statement is specifically in regards to the rhetoric of : "Derp, 80+ million and all we see is a small shooter and some first person chat lobby, Herp".)


Besides that, I'm totally on board with the part about their budget being B.S.. I'm 90%+ certain that they in fact need to maintain funding in order to finish, and they can't simply finish on what they have. Too many mouths to feed over too long of a time. The math just doesn't work out (unless people are working for janitor money).
(But that's not anything to do with why you do or don't see progress)
In any case, so long as they do keep paying their staff and moving along with the game, I'm not particularly concerned. I'll be concerned if they start running dry.


This comment was edited on Sep 3, 2015, 01:52.
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News Comments > Star Citizen Social Module Released
167. Re: Star Citizen Social Module Released Sep 2, 2015, 14:00 Scheherazade
dsmart wrote on Sep 2, 2015, 13:26:
OK, here is a wakeup call that's hard to ignore.

In a Kotaku interview just two weeks ago, Chris stated that the full game would be completed by end of 2016.

THIS is the game he recently said they are going to deliver by end of 2016.


Note that the stretch goals commits them to 100 systems for which each needs a social module. To date, they have only released one buggy and empty one, ArcCorp, while showing another, Nyx which has more performance issues than I care to even highlight.

2016. He said that.

Of the 500 people paid for by SC cash, what makes you so sure that none of them are making content for those other 98 systems?

What makes you so sure that all the content they have created toward the final game, is all contained within the ArenaCommander&ArcCorp demo?

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News Comments > Star Citizen Social Module Released
163. Re: Star Citizen Social Module Released Sep 2, 2015, 12:42 Scheherazade
Creston wrote on Sep 2, 2015, 12:24:
Scheherazade wrote on Sep 1, 2015, 10:21:
No one is on time, everyone is over budget.
TBH, the very idea that you can predict a schedule, with nice buffers, is a fallacy.

May I recommend that you work with better project managers. I've worked with absolutely great project managers, both on small and massive huge projects, and probably 90% of their projects were delivered on time and under budget.

It helps if you have someone who knows what he's doing, who analyzes areas where things may fail and plans ahead for if/when that happens, and someone who doesn't promise the moon.

Of course, said project managers also didn't have to try to coax 3 million dollars worth of funding out of people every month in order to keep their developers employed.

If it's re-hashing things that have been done before, and just customizing for a particular customer, it's quite predictable.

When making new/novel items (i.e. customer has a unique new problem, and you are making a novel solution to it [not one that has ever been made before]), things get unpredictable.

Different industries cater to different customers. I happen to be in the "hey, this new gadget was invented, can we integrate it to do X? - Sure, why the hell not. F it." industry.
(Well, half is that. The other half is "Let's update some legacy system X by rebuilding it from modern hardware" - which isn't entirely new, but that hardware is new, and hence has plenty of quirks to discover. In either case, gobs of 1-off stuff with no prior users to work out the bugs ahead of time.)


This comment was edited on Sep 2, 2015, 12:52.
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News Comments > Star Citizen Social Module Released
161. Re: Star Citizen Social Module Released Sep 2, 2015, 10:04 Scheherazade
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News Comments > Star Citizen Social Module Released
160. Re: Star Citizen Social Module Released Sep 2, 2015, 10:01 Scheherazade
dsmart wrote on Sep 2, 2015, 08:57:
Notice that in the project status, they now mark ArcCorp as "ready". Though it is an incomplete and buggy mess, like the other modules, apparently it's ready. Which is precisely why I said in this comment that they're going to rush through these in 2016 in order to keep backers and the Feds off their backs for non-delivery.

"Ready" doesn't have to be the build you are playing. Neither does "Ready" mean "Complete".

Their in house build could actually have it ready /and/ complete, but that's beside the point.

In any case, with such a large team/production, you can build out most of the content to 90% completion in parallel, and nothing is "ready" at most points in time (other than the feature-testing kernel(s)).

dsmart wrote on Sep 2, 2015, 07:45:
btw, the reason they took out co-op and drop-in/drop-out is blatantly obvious. The net code sux.

IIRC it's not 'gone gone'. You just don't get to be a full fledged character along with the 'main' campaign player. You only hop in for combat to replace an AI, and are otherwise not present in the story. Some chatter about how a player centric/focused narrative becomes a bear if you gotta juggle each player's possible choices and integrate all branches.

It's not entirely clear if this coop is sandboxed or not (i.e. individual missions a-la modern combat coop - or a campaign).


This comment was edited on Sep 2, 2015, 10:18.
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