Project for BKmod

Talk about CoH1 or BKMOD1 in general.
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maeglin
Posts: 4
Joined: 21 Jan 2020, 23:13

Project for BKmod

Post by maeglin »

Hey guys, devs,
let me ask a simple question: is there any particular plan or roadmap or project or scheme or catalog of ideas for the development of BK-mod?

If there is not, then I think, those really should be made or the mod would rather descent into chaos provided by whiners, random shouters and sudden ideas from random guys.. From what I hear (from fellow players) and read on this forum it rather seems to me that devs are very much prone to random shouts from anyone who is loudest at the moment. It is good to hear to the community, of course. But it is not the community who is making this mod. So it should have only consultative role, not the main vote in creating.

I have been playing this mod from the very beginning (and also vanilla CoH) and it had it's highs and lows as the time flowed - which is natural - but right now I think it needs more of project management :idea: and less impact on endless discussions on every detail. Sometimes is rather better to faster publish not-so-polished product than perfect gem in nearly infinite amount of time.

Now you can shoot me. :twisted:

kwok
Team Member
Posts: 2237
Joined: 29 Mar 2015, 05:22

Re: Project for BKmod

Post by kwok »

Hi maeglin,

There has been a roadmap for a while for at least the past 1-2 years: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=3423

We are coming up on a large release that has been planned out. The main people that are listened to on this forum aren't random shouters, complainers, and sudden ideas but rather mostly people who have been on the journey of testing the beta with us for about a year now. I would go out to say the most recent chaos is due to a larger influx of players finally getting on the beta and finally making a forum account since the change is coming soon (a lot of too little too late).

On each update we give the plan to the next update and the next update is a full release of the changes that is honestly not polished. We made a decision to delay this particular release for so long because of the scope of the project. Here is the original release that announced the project: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=3207&sid=b8638e2761 ... 9e9b94faf9

To claim that the devs are prone to the random shouts from players and who is loudest I think is far from the truth. I can go into the specific examples (like the "popular" ideas: 4 man PE squads, limit to 1 sniper, etc) where the devs have flat out veto'd the community due to the team's experience in managing the community. There have also been examples of the opposite where the devs specifically reach out to the community to generate ideas (for example the reworked TH doctrine to Panzer Support). There is even extreme examples where the devs took an entire initiative on its own without community input until post release (for example the Armor, Inf, and Luft doctrine). Overall, it's always a balance between taking community input and making own decisions.

That being said, in my opinion only, in foresight and in retrospect the problems have been and will continue to be proper testing AND change management rather than project management. We did not get a high amount of testers until a couple weeks before we announced we will release to the main version, a bunch of last minute people who think they know best because they've played 3 games start posting despite having the chance to impact early on. The latest on the Panzer Support changes shows this most evidently.
Also, it doesn't help when every player who supports the changes does minimal to contribute while those who don't support change do everything possible to undermine any effort. It doesn't help when a player creates an invite-only server labeled "BK Beta Feedback Server", spreads falsehoods about the mod, actively prevents players from speaking out on the forum, and bans devs from being able to read/address the feedback on the server.

Multiple times the community asks devs "how can we help?" and they ALWAYS get the same answer. They will say things like "well I can help do the corsix changes" or "i can help make models" or "i can help project manage" but the response they always get is "test the most recent changes, provide feedback, and get OTHER players to try the changes". Because changes fundamentally shouldn't be pushed if it's unfinished, not unpolished. We were in an unfinished state for over a year with only a handful of testers and even less people providing any sort of actionable feedback. People will say they tested the BETA the most but believe me... as someone who has literally been working on it for the entire time, gets constantly bombarded with private messages on how things should be, and reads every post on the forum and as much as I can on other channels of communication (like discord, steam page, even youtube), I know exactly who has been testing it the most and who only recently tested.

The problem isn't that we take random people's suggestions (because we don't). The problem is we get so few suggestions that we can't create an aggregate picture of where the mod should go. If you are looking to contribute and help, the best thing you can do at this point is prepare for the tournament, practice the beta, win, and then educate others on how to win. Devs will be more receptive to feedback AFTER we release on the planned release (going to aim for early next week or maybe even this weekend. I think it's on me to finish the updated map which I'm almost done with).

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Devilfish
Posts: 331
Joined: 26 Mar 2015, 18:51

Re: Project for BKmod

Post by Devilfish »

Hello Kwok and the Team,
Let me disagree with you. You say that project management is fine, it's just that there are not enough testers. But part of the management is to evaluate and take such circumstances into consideration. You (the team) decide to go for a considerable doctrine overhaul, but half-way through realize, you have no way to properly test it? Whose fault is that? Most players are not interested in testing and you can't blame them for that.

The main problem is that you abused the beta concept. Beta is for final testing and fine-tuning before release. What you did is you've essentially created a separate branch of the mod for over a year and then blame players for not playing that one instead of the release version.

The other flaw is that you have no real method to evaluate the changes done. Release a big bunch of changes in one go (obviously only in the beta branch) then play a few random with some of your buddies and what? Go with the gut?

But maybe I am wronging you and you have some methods, but there is another problem, transparency. Working on something for god knows how long and then bam, new huge changelog with whole flippin' doc redone. Few forum topics created, immediately spammed by a few people doing anything but a constructive discussion. I don't have the energy to bother with that shiat, and I bet many others as well. Why not to share small things you are working on, what is on dev team's minds? Why not to set up small, specific goals and milestones? Forum is not the best tool for everything, try this for instance https://trello.com/

Bottom line, you took too big of a bite. Taking too big steps at a time. Should have gone with much smaller changes and iterating with patches in the production version. Not hiding everything in an alternative beta universe. In any case, take this as an honest critique, not a hate. Thanks for trying and hope that the new version turns out well despite everything.
"Only by admitting what we are can we get what we want"

maeglin
Posts: 4
Joined: 21 Jan 2020, 23:13

Re: Project for BKmod

Post by maeglin »

Thank you guys for detailed and interesting answers. I too very much hope that new patch/beta would turn well and BK community would be united again and there would be a whole lot player ready to play.

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