iiMStevo

So... what's happening?

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So... We're about two months behind the "definite" release date of Town Square now.

I'm not one to complain at this stuff as I understand game development can take longer than expected when you really want to perfect something. However, the Town Square is essentially a beta module, so really it doesn't need to be perfect before it can be released, that said I'm really looking forward to actually getting in to see what the game looks and feels like, and how the interactions work.

 

My biggest worry with Asylum right now, is not their failure to meet their own deadlines, but it's the complete lack of official communication. I've posted numerous times now that Asylum need to be more engaging with their community; there's nothing being released on their own official website about... well, anything.

- The last announcement was April 20th.

- The last dev-blog was a month ago.

- The last stream was 3 days ago (quite recent, but before that, it was a month... and there's only 5 videos total on their YouTube channel).

- The twitch account doesn't seem to have any real content aside from watching someone design a singular object with someone talking over it... and while it's cool to see some things being made by professionals, I really don't get why objects like this are still being made when the module is two months behind its definite release date... surely a deck-chair or lamp or whatever can wait. That's purely aesthetic extras which shouldn't be holding up development at all.

- The last I heard was the TS module will be released when the new website goes live at the end of April / start of May, but still no website or any further update on that front.

 

So what gives? Why is there an absolute void between Asylum and their own community? Either I'm missing critical information channels here that are filling these voids, or there's a massive void where there should be a huge flow of information two months past their own deadline.

It really shouldn't be too difficult with a Community Manager to simply put out a quick update article every week detailing what's happening, why there are delays, what the team is working on, where the game's direction is heading etc... you know, simply engage with your community.

I used to have a huge presence in Halo 3's Forge on a community site called Forge Hub, and we released several article pieces weekly... it isn't that difficult, and the staff members back then did it all for free.

One article every three months is NOT keeping a community informed, and currently a lot of this community aren't just community members, they've paid in advance for this game and need to be treated like customers... and you shouldn't be misinforming and keeping your customers in the dark.

 

EDIT:
This isn't a topic to discuss the deadline, or why development is slow... it is to discuss the lack of communication, and why the communications put out there are all scattered across several different media outlets, as opposed to being uniform and on their own website.

Edited by iiMStevo
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TL:DR ( too long didn't read )

The game is fine, it's a work in progress and is almost ready. Yes the devs didn't meet their deadlines but it wasn't really a deadline and that's why they introduced the dev tracker so we could see how long is left. Secondly the town square is by no means a beta module, it's a pre-alpha module and the beta comes after all 3 modules have released.

The devs Haven't been good at communicating in the past but are trying to be better now, to be honest what would you rather have? Devs working hard on the game or not working as hard because they're giving us an update every 5 seconds? 

In other words have patience like the rest of us and relax. It'll be ready when the remaining tasks are finished, the new website will hopefully launch at the same time and once the steam verification process has been approved we'll be able to play town square.

 

Edited by Preston_bodhi_343
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I've been keeping an eye on the Dev Tracker they have put up for a while. Every now and then I'll look and see somethings gone from "In Progress" to "In Testing", or just "Completed" all together. Progress is being made.

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They've been saying Town Square Module would be released back in December, then Easter, now its summer lol

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12 minutes ago, Orbiit said:

They've been saying Town Square Module would be released back in December, then Easter, now its summer lol

 

Those were hopeful release dates and realised it wasn't going to happen so they've had to push back. Annoying for a lot of people but over the last 6 months or so I've come to understand this situation a lot more and realise actually game development does take a long time and there are problems that do happen. This isn't a scam and is far closer to becoming a reality than say 3 years ago.

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I think this post is honest and constructive. I don't understand why you have to be either a die hard fan who doesn't question anything (PRESTON_BODHI_343) or think everything is a scam (Eschaton). 

It is more than acceptable to question the development direction they have taken here, as well as their lack of community engagement, especially when they talk about community as something they value.

Now, I have backed this project, and I am eagerly awaiting TS just like everyone else. But at the same time, I am also unhappy with the way they have handled information and communicating what is going on so that their backers, customers, and future playerbase have a somewhat better understanding. ESPECIALLY given their poor track record.

So both sides are wrong. It is perfectly reasonable to question what the heck is going on here, but calling it a scam is irritating too. We are still seeing stuff, but honestly, not enough.

Also FYI, you wouldn't have one of your developers write articles each week, to your point, that wouldn't make sense when there is clearly a lot of work for them to do. BUT you could very well delegate that task to someone who is not developing. Or hire someone specifically to engage your community and such. Come on, thats pretty basic.

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12 minutes ago, Suspect7 said:

I think this post is honest and constructive. I don't understand why you have to be either a die hard fan who doesn't question anything (PRESTON_BODHI_343) or think everything is a scam (Eschaton). 

It is more than acceptable to question the development direction they have taken here, as well as their lack of community engagement, especially when they talk about community as something they value.

Now, I have backed this project, and I am eagerly awaiting TS just like everyone else. But at the same time, I am also unhappy with the way they have handled information and communicating what is going on so that their backers, customers, and future playerbase have a somewhat better understanding. ESPECIALLY given their poor track record.

So both sides are wrong. It is perfectly reasonable to question what the heck is going on here, but calling it a scam is irritating too. We are still seeing stuff, but honestly, not enough.

Also FYI, you wouldn't have one of your developers write articles each week, to your point, that wouldn't make sense when there is clearly a lot of work for them to do. BUT you could very well delegate that task to someone who is not developing. Or hire someone specifically to engage your community and such. Come on, thats pretty basic.

 

First of all I've questioned things many times on this forum and I'm not quite at the point of die hard, I just have strong faith but I have criticised the devs where needed.

Secondly it's one thing to question the direction of where the game development is going but to outright scream "waaaahh it's a scam the devs are scum" is just childish and unnecessary and frankly I've seen too much of this in the last month which I think we can both agree on.

Other than that I can't argue with you.

 

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2 hours ago, iiMStevo said:

- The last stream was 3 days ago (quite recent, but before that, it was a month... and there's only 5 videos total on their YouTube channel).

The devs stream every Tuesday and Thursday. Gameplay streams not so much as you point those two out. 

2 hours ago, iiMStevo said:

- The last dev-blog was a month ago.

They are Monthly Dev Blogs

2 hours ago, iiMStevo said:

- The last announcement was April 20th.

What are they to announce? If you say a release date, well we have the tracker instead of one. 

2 hours ago, iiMStevo said:

- The twitch account doesn't seem to have any real content aside from watching someone design a singular object with someone talking over it... and while it's cool to see some things being made by professionals, I really don't get why objects like this are still being made when the module is two months behind its definite release date... surely a deck-chair or lamp or whatever can wait. That's purely aesthetic extras which shouldn't be holding up development at all.

The Artist don't programme..... So how are the objects like the deck chair and lamp holding up the programmers?

2 hours ago, iiMStevo said:

- The last I heard was the TS module will be released when the new website goes live at the end of April / start of May, but still no website or any further update on that front.

No, they said the new website will either come before or along side the TS module release. Please check the tracker for the progress on the TS module, as when that is completed the module will be submitted to steam to for verification and then it will release.

2 hours ago, iiMStevo said:

One article every three months is NOT keeping a community informed, and currently a lot of this community aren't just community members, they've paid in advance for this game and need to be treated like customers... and you shouldn't be misinforming and keeping your customers in the dark.

They have a dev blog every Month not every 3 months. Also Beach_Ball the community manager does answer the communities questions. 

Also we are customers but at the same time "Pledging/ Donating" to help fund the development on the game. We get the perks in the pledge we chose to say thank you for helping development early on.

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1 minute ago, LuckyDuck said:

The devs stream every Tuesday and Thursday. Gameplay streams not so much as you point those two out. 

They are Monthly Dev Blogs

What are they to announce? If you say a release date, well we have the tracker instead of one. 

The Artist don't programme..... So how are the objects like the deck chair and lamp holding up the programmers?

No, they said the new website will either come before or along side the TS module release. Please check the tracker for the progress on the TS module, as when that is completed the module will be submitted to steam to for verification and then it will release.

They have a dev blog every Month not every 3 months. Also Beach_Ball the community manager does answer the communities questions. 

Also we are customers but at the same time "Pledging/ Donating" to help fund the development on the game. We get the perks in the pledge we chose to say thank you for helping development early on.

 

^^

Boom, mic drop 

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On 02/07/2018 at 9:04 PM, Suspect7 said:

I think this post is honest and constructive. I don't understand why you have to be either a die hard fan who doesn't question anything (PRESTON_BODHI_343) or think everything is a scam (Eschaton). 

It is more than acceptable to question the development direction they have taken here, as well as their lack of community engagement, especially when they talk about community as something they value.

Now, I have backed this project, and I am eagerly awaiting TS just like everyone else. But at the same time, I am also unhappy with the way they have handled information and communicating what is going on so that their backers, customers, and future playerbase have a somewhat better understanding. ESPECIALLY given their poor track record.

So both sides are wrong. It is perfectly reasonable to question what the heck is going on here, but calling it a scam is irritating too. We are still seeing stuff, but honestly, not enough.

Also FYI, you wouldn't have one of your developers write articles each week, to your point, that wouldn't make sense when there is clearly a lot of work for them to do. BUT you could very well delegate that task to someone who is not developing. Or hire someone specifically to engage your community and such. Come on, thats pretty basic.

 

Thank you.

You’re the only person to see this point of this post is about communication and not about crying about progress.

Props to you, sir/miss.

 

On 02/07/2018 at 9:31 PM, LuckyDuck said:

The devs stream every Tuesday and Thursday. Gameplay streams not so much as you point those two out. 

They are Monthly Dev Blogs

What are they to announce? If you say a release date, well we have the tracker instead of one. 

The Artist don't programme..... So how are the objects like the deck chair and lamp holding up the programmers?

No, they said the new website will either come before or along side the TS module release. Please check the tracker for the progress on the TS module, as when that is completed the module will be submitted to steam to for verification and then it will release.

They have a dev blog every Month not every 3 months. Also Beach_Ball the community manager does answer the communities questions. 

Also we are customers but at the same time "Pledging/ Donating" to help fund the development on the game. We get the perks in the pledge we chose to say thank you for helping development early on.

 

Regardless of everything you’ve just said, you don’t answer the point of this post...

Why is communication so poor? Announcements should be made to keep people updated, so they don’t have to go looking in every corner of the internet to see if any progress hasn’t been made. I’ve been checking the process tracker and it hasn’t shifted once in six weeks. I have to trawl the forums to read hearsay posts about how someone’s friend heard the postman’s dog say it won’t be updated until the new site is up, and your cousin’s friend’s sister’s boyfriend is close mates with the developer of the new site and they’re waiting on payments so hat won’t be live until the third moon of the Chinese New Year... 

Look at any other game developer, they put out articles for progress to keep people updated. Crowd-funded projects such as this need to have that connection amplified by ten... it isn’t happening and it makes no sense as to why it isn’t. Its literally the easiest thing to write a weekly article about how something makes progress. You cover what happened, you cover what’s going to happen, and you highlight any questions the community has... job done.

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6 minutes ago, iiMStevo said:

I’ve been checking the process tracker and it hasn’t shifted once in six weeks.

Hasn't changed visually in 1 week**** 

Another way to have a question answered is going on the discord and asking Beach_Ball. 

I answered and corrected some of the things you pointed out. I don't have answers to everything as I know as much as you on some things. I have also conveyed over certain points another member gave/ suggested which are the same as yours. I too would love more info, but also I can't answer everything as you can see because I am a Moderator and can only tell you what I get told. 

I can only say, if I get answers for anything then I can give you some answers but until then, I will answer what i can to help. I read and understood everything on your post and yes, Beach_Ball already gave the answer that we are waiting on the Payment Provider for theirs side of things in which they have a few problems to deal with causing the delay for everyone. That is the truth and well if you choose to believe it or not is down to you.

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1 hour ago, LuckyDuck said:

1. Another way to have a question answered is going on the discord and asking Beach_Ball.

2. I too would love more info, but also I can't answer everything as you can see because I am a Moderator and can only tell you what I get told. 

 

1. That’s exactly the problem. Discord, Twitch, YouTube, Forums, Announcemens... so many ways and different places to track certain goings-on which should never be the case. Information should be readily available and be broadcast centrally from the original website of any project. It’s all good and well saying the information and progress is out there... as far as I’m concerned it isn’t, because there hasn’t been an official announcement by Asylum for three months. It’s an extremely poor communication structure, and it needs addressing.

2. It’s not your job to be a messenger as a moderator of forums. Your job is to keep the forums clear of garbage. The fact you have to relay on so much information as a moderator should be confirming point 1. to you even more... the simple truth is, they need to be putting out weekly announcements about progress, linking content like the twitch streams or YouTube uploads, advising on progress and setbacks, stating what future development plans are and engaging with the community. 

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Full agreement. I've been saying this stuff for awhile now - as a fellow indie developer, I think dev to playerbase communication is imperative! Organization is important as well. Consistency. And transparency.

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As there clearly seems to be some form of breakdown in communication here, I haven't asked any questions that have already been answered; I've asked why there's a severe void in official communications, and why the existing forms of communications are spread across multiple forms of media: - Twitch, YouTube, Discord, Forums, Announcements, E-mail, Twitter... None of which have been answered, because Lucky can't answer that.
If you read the original post, my entire post is asking why there is a void in official communication. The announcements section should be used to inform the community, and it isn't being used. The last announcement is April 20th, and reading that announcement, you get the understanding that the module should have been released at the end of April... that hasn't happened, and there's no official explanation as to why. No community members should be forced to go on a treasure hunt looking for information that should be readily available.

You cannot say that there isn't a void in communication, because if the community were well-informed through Announcements (they literally get sent to registered member's email accounts) there wouldn't be the majority of duplicate topics that there are. That's my problem... and I have no ill-will to Lucky, he's doing what he's supposed to, but what Preston is doing is what a successful community typically tries to avoid, because if you look at any of the past duplicate topics; he's in there being just as condescending and self-righteous in them all. People want information, they don't want to be "put-down" for asking questions about something they've invested money in.

Now, as for a duplicate topic, please by all means link in where there's a discussion about a severe break-down in communication. The only posts I've found aren't topic starters based on communication, but there are several people expressing the same opinion;

 

I mean, the list goes on... but you get the picture.
(For reference, this is just three posts I picked out key-wording "Communication", that aren't one of the three people that liked the original post of this thread).

Edited by iiMStevo
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I have $500.00 invested for over a year and have zero problem with not having my hand held. Just watch the tracker and let the team finish TS.

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I'm pretty sure they are stalling to promote hype, as well as push closer and closer to the SWAT update. We know that the artists are still producing assets, and the programmers' work is complete on Town Square. There are 3 things that have been in testing for around 2 weeks. This means that everyone has been working on the next module. Since the SWAT update is an addon to the base game, it will take much less time to complete than Town Square. I figure that, since vehicles are presently in development, and the SWAT system is simply the introduction of factions (or jobs, or both) that they may even be close to finished with the SWAT update. The most likely release date for SWAT would be 3 months after TS. This will give players enough time to understand the game, and have enough time for potential Police Officers to apply. After that, the vehicles update, which, as stated, vehicles are present in gameplay footage, so they may be a short wait too. The vehicles just need to be fleshed out and more vehicles are probably in production. After all the modules are out, they just need to add content: the full map, more vehicles, skins, clothing, basically more stuff.

TLDR: Town Square is probably being stalled, but the later addons are probably coming very soon after TS is released.

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31 minutes ago, Aerotactics said:

I'm pretty sure they are stalling to promote hype, as well as push closer and closer to the SWAT update. We know that the artists are still producing assets, and the programmers' work is complete on Town Square. There are 3 things that have been in testing for around 2 weeks. This means that everyone has been working on the next module. Since the SWAT update is an addon to the base game, it will take much less time to complete than Town Square. I figure that, since vehicles are presently in development, and the SWAT system is simply the introduction of factions (or jobs, or both) that they may even be close to finished with the SWAT update. The most likely release date for SWAT would be 3 months after TS. This will give players enough time to understand the game, and have enough time for potential Police Officers to apply. After that, the vehicles update, which, as stated, vehicles are present in gameplay footage, so they may be a short wait too. The vehicles just need to be fleshed out and more vehicles are probably in production. After all the modules are out, they just need to add content: the full map, more vehicles, skins, clothing, basically more stuff.

TLDR: Town Square is probably being stalled, but the later addons are probably coming very soon after TS is released.

 

The Developer Cyber's explanation on what "In Testing" means on the tracker.

Quote

? CYBER ? - Today at 21:23
remember that "testing" doesn't mean "hey i'll launch it and see if it looks pretty! herpa derp"

testing = launching, assessing, trying to break under stress test, load balancing, quality assurance, maintenance AND if you found a bug, you gotta FIX IT, and then redo all that testing because a fix can spawn another bug. so just because the tracker LOOKS idle, doesn't mean that we have been.
my 2cents from my side..

The 3D artists are working on assets because the last 3 things in testing are programming things and so the artists can't help on that part of the tasks.

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21 hours ago, LuckyDuck said:

The Developer Cyber's explanation on what "In Testing" means on the tracker.

The 3D artists are working on assets because the last 3 things in testing are programming things and so the artists can't help on that part of the tasks.

 

I think a better explanation for "In Testing" would be "Finalizing," meaning that the code is all there, but it's not yet working the way they want it to. In my experience, "In Testing" assumes it is complete and just needs to be tested for QA purposes. 

As for the next 2 modules, I believe they should take no more than 6 months each at this rate.

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54 minutes ago, Aerotactics said:

I think a better explanation for "In Testing" would be "Finalizing," meaning that the code is all there, but it's not yet working the way they want it to. In my experience, "In Testing" assumes it is complete and just needs to be tested for QA purposes. 

As for the next 2 modules, I believe they should take no more than 6 months each at this rate.

The racing module will take longer than the s.w.a.t. module because of the car physics etc. 

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On 7/2/2018 at 1:47 PM, Preston_bodhi_343 said:

TL:DR ( too long didn't read )

The game is fine, it's a work in progress and is almost ready. Yes the devs didn't meet their deadlines but it wasn't really a deadline and that's why they introduced the dev tracker so we could see how long is left. Secondly the town square is by no means a beta module, it's a pre-alpha module and the beta comes after all 3 modules have released.

The devs Haven't been good at communicating in the past but are trying to be better now, to be honest what would you rather have? Devs working hard on the game or not working as hard because they're giving us an update every 5 seconds? 

In other words have patience like the rest of us and relax. It'll be ready when the remaining tasks are finished, the new website will hopefully launch at the same time and once the steam verification process has been approved we'll be able to play town square.

 

 

Everybody I've talked to said they will not buy the game right now even if they save money because they don't even know if its gonna be done, they don't believe the devs will come out with a real product and they have no trust for a company who is on their first game. If there was more public relations, feedback, or even talk between the community and the devs were more transparent on their game and people actually knew they were working for it and that it was going to be a good product then people would buy it, and everyone I've met outside of this forum also agrees if they preorder, buy the game, for $15, they should get beta access, no company ever has made you pay for beta access (because right now you're valuing beta access at $15 the cost of the actual game), and don't even talk about the modules, they're minigames, they're minigames to show how development is going, they're not real products, but they're good fun and a good demo. Not to mention they haven't met one deadline.

Those are the reasons people are skeptical of the game and there would be a lot more preorders and funding if these issues were solved

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15 minutes ago, abababababa said:

Everybody I've talked to said they will not buy the game right now even if they save money because they don't even know if its gonna be done, they don't believe the devs will come out with a real product and they have no trust for a company who is on their first game. If there was more public relations, feedback, or even talk between the community and the devs were more transparent on their game and people actually knew they were working for it and that it was going to be a good product then people would buy it, and everyone I've met outside of this forum also agrees if they preorder, buy the game, for $15, they should get beta access, no company ever has made you pay for beta access (because right now you're valuing beta access at $15 the cost of the actual game), and don't even talk about the modules, they're minigames, they're minigames to show how development is going, they're not real products, but they're good fun and a good demo. Not to mention they haven't met one deadline.

Those are the reasons people are skeptical of the game and there would be a lot more preorders and funding if these issues were solved

 

if the beta access was included in the preorder it would probably cost 30$, the 15$ option is only for those who want to save money and don't want to bother with beta access...

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2 hours ago, dagtag said:

if the beta access was included in the preorder it would probably cost 30$, the 15$ option is only for those who want to save money and don't want to bother with beta access...

 

lol... which mathematically makes the beta access worth $15, the same value as the game... which is what he said :D

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51 minutes ago, iiMStevo said:

lol... which mathematically makes the beta access worth $15, the same value as the game... which is what he said :D

 

yeah but he also suggested they should just include the beta access to the cheapest package so I was making clear to him that if that would happen the price for the cheapest option would go up ;)

Edited by dagtag
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A long while ago i got excited hearing about this game.  I been around Arma 2/3 Life Mods or RP communities and that is where Asylum is coming from as well.  I haven't said that much throughout the course of the time,  I think once i finally asked questions regarding some sort of an update what is going on the development side.  Asylum needs to start getting their stuff together and be more in sync with the community.  I seen tons of posts with responses such as "Development takes time", "They have a small team"  And even then i still waited patiently.  However after watching few videos witch character creation and game play or rather so-called game play i realized for a term of 3 years, including some hicups they had not that match has been done.  I mean they do have dedicated artists and coders.  Now before someone shouts back and says that i have no idea what i am talking about let me share this with you. I started screwing around with Unreal Engine and Unity, And honestly in a month of time you can get a similar content they have been showing us.  Sure you can get a nice working map, invest into few assets such us day/night cycle with full weather, You can't even get a AAA Locomotion System for Unreal Enginethat is truly amazing for character movement and tons better of what we seen in the recent  game play streams.  Let's be serious,  the content shown to use is definitely not something that would take years to develop,  We are seeing character movement,  character creation and buildings that are decorated and almost no functionality introduced. You can search on you tube and find people decorating a map in 4 hours with stunning results... See this Speed Level Design done all in Unreal 4.  The real question is are we being told the truth because i am starting to feel like i am not being told the whole truth.  I rather hear the painful truth than sweet lies and that everything is pronto. 

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Obviously we are only seeing TS not all of the work done on the entire world map. Plus developing a game is more complex than just making generic scenes like the links you have posted.

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