View Full Version : Alarming silence of Firaxis


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gunter
Oct 09, 2007, 06:02 AM
After the 3.13 effort several issues have remained and it is only thanks to Bhruic & friend that those issues are beeing fixed out.

My dard goes to Firaxis...and I question about their silence because it would be sufficient to say : " guys, we are aware that several issues are still present and we will work to release 3.15 within a month to fix them all " ........or : " guys,the 3.13 has been the last one so stop moaning and take it easy".

In your opinion which is the reason of their silence ?

I am convinced nowdays more than ever where customers have became the only real betatesters that at least a faint level of comunication between Firaxis and its customers is mandatory,above all considering we are paying them since roughly a dozen years,more or less.

It is also clear that such a gorgeous site deserves at least a special comunication channel. It seems to happen the opposite...neither big rock star are so snob with their fans....

warpstorm
Oct 09, 2007, 07:25 AM
Considering the reaction they got here when they did give an Estimated Time of Arrival on a patch and were a few days late, I'm not at all surprised.

The flaming that Alexman, who was actually trying to help by giving dates and contents of the next patch, took makes it unlikely that this will be a special channel again.

Soneji
Oct 09, 2007, 07:52 AM
Yup, the masses ruined it tbh.

blitzkrieg1980
Oct 09, 2007, 07:53 AM
What else is new?

ripple01
Oct 09, 2007, 08:03 AM
I believe it was more than a few days late, depending on how alexman's comments were interpreted, but it is still a sad fact that the only communication from Firaxis was unofficial communication through a staff member. Let's not forget that Firaxis does not maintain any official forum of it's own, and that they direct site visitors to the forums here at CFC.

To blame the masses is unfair, IMO. If you want to blame somebody, blame Firaxis for not providing an official communication channel to fans for one of the most popular gaming series of all time.

Cheers,
ripple01

Horizons
Oct 09, 2007, 08:09 AM
I'm still happily playing 3.03 - even with 'broken' corporations etc - and wouldn't honestly care if I never patched it ever again. It would be nice to have a 3.15+ which fixes the 3.13 issues but not essential :)

LiberiGlacialis
Oct 09, 2007, 08:26 AM
Woohoo! Go Soxs!

Alright, back on topic...well, Bh has made an unoffical patch to the patch, and this is the most moddable Civ yet, so even if Firaxis abandons Civ (which I'm betting against), Civ 4 can still be patched to a point.

blitzkrieg1980
Oct 09, 2007, 08:35 AM
If Firaxis abandons Civ after Civ4, then we can probably count on the modders and serious community members to pick up the pieces, and perhaps even release their own open source Civ5. I truly believe that after the formation of a community so involved in the product, that even if they pulled it from the shelves, Civ will live on! Huzzah!!!! ;)

Duuk
Oct 09, 2007, 08:40 AM
Woohoo! Go Soxs!

Alright, back on topic...well, Bh has made an unoffical patch to the patch, and this is the most moddable Civ yet, so even if Firaxis abandons Civ (which I'm betting against), Civ 4 can still be patched to a point.

User mods can't fix the multiplayer out of sync issues or the fact that Firaxis introduced different version issues for Warlords and Vanilla with this patch.

jray
Oct 09, 2007, 08:46 AM
I would at least appreciate an announcement from Firaxis regarding which unexpected changes in 3.13 are "bugs" and which are "features." That would help us figure out how to preserve unaltered gameplay as we're making our own patches.

I understand that their silence is probably motivated by some kind of "play it safe, don't rock the boat" attitude, understandable in this day and age of frivolous lawsuits, but I'm still very disappointed in their silence. Grow up and take some responsibility for your mistakes please, Firaxis! Just ignore the flamers and know that many of us here will appreciate your communication.

gps
Oct 09, 2007, 08:57 AM
Hmm, maybe we should take it easy, the patch has been released just five days ago, so in my opinion that's not really an 'alarming' silence.
Nevertheless I do see some worrying parallels to the disaapointing way, they treated Civ III Conquest. BTS is the second addon, the game gets more complex, the number of bugs is rising and might require more and more efforts to solve - while the Civ 4-project team is disolving, budgets are used up and basically everyone has it's mind set on Civ Revolutions, Civ 5 or whatever new cash cow they have in mind for us spent our hard earned money on.
I hope, the don't go the cheap way simply abandoning BTS as they did with Conquests. I also think, we should give them some time to realize, there's still work to do. But if there wont be any reply within the next four to eight weeks - I guess then that's the inglorious end for Civ 4 as well.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 09, 2007, 09:04 AM
I see no reason for a response the second that someone in Firaxis actually tries to use their own wacked out patch... something like oh s*** we forgot to put the culture value next to the building! Or, ***? Why does Alexander want my iron when he already has his own?

blitzkrieg1980
Oct 09, 2007, 09:07 AM
<WAR HORN> Yankees fans (Bronx/Staten Island/New Jersey) declared war on Red Sox Fans (Boston)! The enemy has been spotted near Fenway! ;) good luck to the Sox. I'd rather see the Cubbies actually win, but what can I do? Yankees season is over and now there is no hope for my 1-4 Jets :(.

Oops... shoulda posted in the Sports Forum, :lol:

Personally, I don't see that many problems with the patched BTS. I tend to ignore non-gameplay related glitches and I try my best to adapt to any unbalance issues (which many have been resolved)

Rince
Oct 09, 2007, 09:07 AM
Let's give them a bit more time. The patch is only out a few days. I expect a response by the end of the week. Maybe not on CFC but at least on A*****on.

Greetings,

Rince

Soneji
Oct 09, 2007, 09:19 AM
I don't see what everyones problem is with that.

I mean how long have people been able to extort rediculous amounts of resources for one Iron for example?

If you need to rely on foreign goods, your crap at this game.

I can happily play a whole game without needing anything from the AI, and actually if you refuse their first offer and get them to try again.. they throw something else and some money on top.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 09, 2007, 09:22 AM
Soneji, there's no reason to tear down other players for playing the game as it is meant to be played. It is common to lack valuable resources that your neighbors possess - trading is the only way to acquire those short of open war.

blitzkrieg - my understanding is that there are a couple of problems, such as the AI not realizing it already has a resource and then trying to trade for your copy of it. Also, it will demand exorbitant amounts of resources in exchange for something common, where it should just be a 1:1 ratio in general (unless it's something key like iron) ... at least that has been my experience in the past on monarch.

Soneji
Oct 09, 2007, 09:30 AM
Yes, well if its a common thing... why do players expect an unfair advantage?

All I can see this patch doing is making it far more fair, the AI acts more like a humar player by keeping resources close to its heart.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 09, 2007, 09:37 AM
A 1:1 ratio is scarcely an "advantage"... but perhaps I am missing something here? You mentioned earlier someone being able to extort lots of resources from other civs in exchange for one (or few) of their own...? Do you have a specific example?

Duuk
Oct 09, 2007, 09:39 AM
blitzkrieg - my understanding is that there are a couple of problems, such as the AI not realizing it already has a resource and then trying to trade for your copy of it. Also, it will demand exorbitant amounts of resources in exchange for something common, where it should just be a 1:1 ratio in general (unless it's something key like iron) ... at least that has been my experience in the past on monarch.

Not only does the AI not realize it has it, but when trading for it there is no way for the human to KNOW the ai has it and thus avoid offering it.

MP sync issue.

Culture icon issue.

Firaxis made patch issue.

blitzkrieg1980
Oct 09, 2007, 09:40 AM
AFAI remember, every version of cIV from vanilla on have had the player able to trade exorbitant amounts of GPT and AI lux resources for a human player's one (1) strategic resource.

My game has redded out the resources that the AI already has.

Soneji
Oct 09, 2007, 09:43 AM
AFAI remember, every version of cIV from vanilla on have had the player able to trade exorbitant amounts of GPT and AI lux resources for a human player's one (1) strategic resource.

My game has redded out the resources that the AI already has.

TheWillToAct - Pretty much what he said.

I like the fact you cannot get GPT and Lux for a strat resource.

I don't need an example, almost every game I've played for the last couple of years it happened in.

troyDoogle7
Oct 09, 2007, 09:49 AM
Newsflash.... directly from Firaxis...

Stop crying... They will fix any bugs and release a new patch.

Some of you people are babies...

I wish some of the mods would really close these sorts of threads down, they are annoying.

blitzkrieg1980
Oct 09, 2007, 09:50 AM
I believe that the AI does measure the gains vs. losses. Much of the time, 10 GPT, Dye, and Wine are worth the AI giving if it is getting Coal and the ability to build railroads.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 09, 2007, 09:58 AM
Of course you don't need an example, I'm the one that requested it...

Technicalities aside though, I basically always do the automated "set up the trade for me" ... is this actually a mistake on my part??? If so I would really like to know cuz I have been doing this since I started playing :confused:

blitzkrieg1980
Oct 09, 2007, 10:01 AM
@TheWilltoAct: I always try to grab as much as possible for resource trades. If they refuse, I ask what would be okay. When it comes to tech trades, I am often able to ask for their suggestion first, then take away one of the smaller techs and still get a deal.

jray
Oct 09, 2007, 10:04 AM
AFAI remember, every version of cIV from vanilla on have had the player able to trade exorbitant amounts of GPT and AI lux resources for a human player's one (1) strategic resource.

My game has redded out the resources that the AI already has.

Guys, the resource issue has already been identified as a *bug*, an unintended side effect of the attempted fix to force vassals to offer everything for trade. Go to the Unofficial Patch thread to find a compelling explanation there. Yeah, everyone has a handful of occurrences prior to 3.13 of an AI asking for a bunch of resources, but this here is different, an obvious mistake on Firaxis' part.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 09, 2007, 10:04 AM
I see... I guess what I'm getting at is do you think it's possible to setup a better deal as far as more resources, gpt than the computer does?

cuz that'd be interesting

blitzkrieg1980
Oct 09, 2007, 10:07 AM
I see... I guess what I'm getting at is do you think it's possible to setup a better deal as far as more resources, gpt than the computer does?

cuz that'd be interesting

Yes. Not every time, but sometimes if you ask what kind of deal the AI would be willing to do, it will try to sneak in a cheap tech or some gold that you can barter to take off the table and still score the deal. It isn't often, but it is quite possible.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 09, 2007, 10:27 AM
lol yea... with techs I "micro" to try to get a better deal... that's pretty easy to read lol

but with resource trades? still the same thing you think?

blitzkrieg1980
Oct 09, 2007, 10:40 AM
perhaps. The AI is quite liberal with it's resource trading in my limited experience.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 09, 2007, 10:41 AM
ok, thanks for your input

Duuk
Oct 09, 2007, 10:49 AM
perhaps. The AI is quite liberal with it's resource trading in my limited experience.

Not at all. The ai accepts the deals that a human player is likely to accept.

Luxuries on a one-for-one.
Strategics on a my-one-for-your-country basis.

Honestly, humans rake the AI over the coals for iron, coal, etc (if they're even willing to trade them, which I usually do not). The AI does the same.

blitzkrieg1980
Oct 09, 2007, 11:21 AM
Luxuries definitely not on a one for one. Unless you consider 20 GPT from the AI for your 1 of 9 ivory resource a "1 on 1" type of trade. I would never give 20 GPT for an ivory resource that the AI can still trade to 8 other civs. Also, I can get a fur and gold resources from an AI for one dye in any game (unless they are not diplomatically cool with me).

The AI will always be selective with a strategic resource since it is more likely to have the resource used against one of their ally's. Besides, it had to be programmed that way since the AI cannot possibly utilize resources / GPT / science / military in a way that the human can.

gunter
Oct 10, 2007, 05:32 AM
Newsflash.... directly from Firaxis...

Stop crying... They will fix any bugs and release a new patch.

Some of you people are babies...

I wish some of the mods would really close these sorts of threads down, they are annoying.


Hi baby,

are you entitled enough to state such a news ? I wasn't aware you were a Firaxis spokeman....

If you missed the concept I'm not asking for a date that I agree it is quite a silly request,I'm just wondering about their silence,above all after 3.13 that beside a long list of bug fixes it also carried some garbage stuff like the one Bhruic fixed in a professional way,even because he constantly dialogs with forumers......

Now my theory : Firaxis after the patch moved 95% of resources to Civilization Revolutions that should be a kiddie arcade version of Civilization as far as I know....and now the pc version is floating like a ghost ship without crew on board.

I just want an answer and I can also pretend it having paid their salaries for 15years.

period

jpinard
Oct 10, 2007, 11:22 AM
The developers should have a thick skin by now. There's nothing different here on this forum vs. what happeend with Civ III etc. It's part of gaming and the fact that after we buy a game it's damn hard to wait to have big issues fixed. It saddens me when a developed can no longer remember what it's like to be a gamer who just wants to play his favorite game as bug free as possible. It makes people very passionate and somewhat loopy at times.

MrFrodo
Oct 10, 2007, 12:46 PM
I used to feel the same way until I started working in software development. Developers, QA, Porduct Managers, etc. work very hard to get these products out to their customers. Often working 80 hour weeks and responding day and night to issues. It is incredibly hard to test every aspect of any software in a short amount of time, so a lot of it will be automated and not hit the things that thousands of players simultaneously using it the way each of them likes to can test. So there will always be issues, no matter what they do.

The simple fact is, the company will need a break after a major release or big patch. They have been working their butts off right up to the release date and will want to see their families, go on vacation, and basically return to a somewhat normal life again.

Gamers have strong feelings about playing their games bug free, but you need to realize that the people that can fix it need to have a REAL LIFE that is reasonably comfortable, or they will quit developing games and you will see much worse bugs and delays than before. I have much stronger feelings about people maintaining a work-life balance that is reasonable, avoiding divorce, their children not getting quality time with their parents, or that geeky developer getting a chance to maybe get laid occaisionally, than I do about living with a bug in a GAME for another week while they test and get it right.

gunter
Oct 10, 2007, 12:55 PM
I used to feel the same way until I started working in software development. Developers, QA, Porduct Managers, etc. work very hard to get these products out to their customers. Often working 80 hour weeks and responding day and night to issues. It is incredibly hard to test every aspect of any software in a short amount of time, so a lot of it will be automated and not hit the things that thousands of players simultaneously using it the way each of them likes to can test. So there will always be issues, no matter what they do.

The simple fact is, the company will need a break after a major release or big patch. They have been working their butts off right up to the release date and will want to see their families, go on vacation, and basically return to a somewhat normal life again.

Gamers have strong feelings about playing their games bug free, but you need to realize that the people that can fix it need to have a REAL LIFE that is reasonably comfortable, or they will quit developing games and you will see much worse bugs and delays than before. I have much stronger feelings about people maintaining a work-life balance that is reasonable, avoiding divorce, their children not getting quality time with their parents, or that geeky developer getting a chance to maybe get laid occaisionally, than I do about living with a bug in a GAME for another week while they test and get it right.


Mr Frodo,

you are right in your post,how can anyone disagree ? What you have said is logic and noone here is saying the opposite.

I think anyway that a single official communication post every week it doesn't take more than 5 minutes to be finished.

To be honest I have never seen broken families due to a single post of 5 minutes ;)

But....wait..are you meaning the Bhruic social life is at risk ? Oh my god,I am under the impression the Bhruic's girlfriend will blame us all......I apologize in advance......

Civinator
Oct 10, 2007, 01:01 PM
I think FIRAXIS still had alot of time for real comfortable life with all the features you mentioned MrFrodo, since the last buggy patch for Civ3 Conquests and with your way of seeing things now they should do their job and fix the bugs they have left and adjust the promised features that didn´t work properly with C3C. I hope you got the point. ;)

Even in this Civ 4 thread you can read, that a lot of civers haven´t forgotten the betrayal FIRAXIS did with C3C and I think it´s normal that alot of people worry that this can happen again. Especially with a game that is as doomed by missconstruction as it is Civ 4 (here you can read why: http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=6023466&postcount=29).

Elandal
Oct 10, 2007, 01:04 PM
I do not expect Firaxis to announce anything regarding civ4. If one more patch still will happen, it'll be announced at earliest when it's in QA - meaning when it's close to release, when nothing at all will be done even if QA would say it doesn't pass (yes of course they can release a patch that did not get OK from QA - they will still do QA and QA will still say something and something will still be released, don't expect things to follow common sense always).

Honestly, cIV is not in development. We've had last expansion, and it's had one patch. Minimal ( = none except when someone somewhere manages to convince an expense towards a released final "in maintenance but we all know what that means" product) workforce is allowed for it anymore. Patch is only expense, no income at all in the papers (calculating goodwill from patch will not be done, nor would it be reasonable to put into numbers). We're lucky if we get a patch. If the patch actually fixes bugs and does not introduce new ones, we're twice lucky. If we get some communication regarding or in addition to the patch, it's a miracle.

Maintain my outlook and you may sometimes be positively surprised. Although in case of cIV I don't think that'll happen anymore.

Dagta
Oct 10, 2007, 01:19 PM
I used to feel the same way until I started working in software development. Developers, QA, Porduct Managers, etc. work very hard to get these products out to their customers. Often working 80 hour weeks and responding day and night to issues. It is incredibly hard to test every aspect of any software in a short amount of time, so a lot of it will be automated and not hit the things that thousands of players simultaneously using it the way each of them likes to can test. So there will always be issues, no matter what they do.

The simple fact is, the company will need a break after a major release or big patch. They have been working their butts off right up to the release date and will want to see their families, go on vacation, and basically return to a somewhat normal life again.

Gamers have strong feelings about playing their games bug free, but you need to realize that the people that can fix it need to have a REAL LIFE that is reasonably comfortable, or they will quit developing games and you will see much worse bugs and delays than before. I have much stronger feelings about people maintaining a work-life balance that is reasonable, avoiding divorce, their children not getting quality time with their parents, or that geeky developer getting a chance to maybe get laid occaisionally, than I do about living with a bug in a GAME for another week while they test and get it right.

I'm also a programmer, have been for over ten years and I've run my own company since 2003. I agree with everything you said about having a life and the ridiculous work hours. However, I'm very surprised that this patch was released with the bugs it has. The trade bug and the culture display bug are very obvious bugs that should have been apparent to anyone that played the game. It really makes me wonder if anyone did test the very final version before release.

Bugs are part of programming life. It's not possible to eliminate every bug in a large software project. However, acknowledging a bug and stating the intention to fix is should be announced very quickly.... less than 24 hours of learning of the bug.

Psyringe
Oct 10, 2007, 01:31 PM
If all the people who spend their time with the umpteenth rehash of the same old arguments would spend this time reporting bugs and discussing fixes, then the next patch would actually be released faster (because Firaxis then has more already approved solutions to work with).

Personally, I'm much more interested in making Civ4 the best product it can possibly be, so please excuse me while I move over to the bug forums and leave this thread to the people who enjoy pointless repetitions of resultless discussions more than I do.

Krikkitone
Oct 10, 2007, 01:44 PM
^ see the unofficial 3.13 patch

GenocideBringer
Oct 10, 2007, 04:17 PM
blitzkrieg, have you tried resource trading...

:rolleyes: Then set the deal yourself, cutting out all the extra stuff. It's annoying AT TIMES, but it's very easy to bargain down the AI.


But yeah. The community's whines ruined it.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 10, 2007, 04:37 PM
No... you are wrong. The bug is serious and real and you cannot just bargain it away.

Do not stand in judgement of the community, and do not judge what you do not know.

Minoan
Oct 10, 2007, 04:59 PM
I said it once, and I said it again: If you think Civ IV is buggy, go play Roller Coaster Tycoon 3. I guarantee that afterwards, your opinion on Firaxis will change. Or look at M2:TW prior to patch 1.2. The game was, for several months, almost unplayable. Yes, Civ IV has some serious problems, and it should be patched as quickly as possible, but I believe that some people are seriously overstating the problems with the game, especailly since many of them have been fixed by modders (the multiplayer bug aside).

King of Town
Oct 11, 2007, 04:08 AM
Based on the fact that someone has already released a fix to the problems people are having for the most part, i don't understand the point of this thread. I loathe the day Alexman came on as a favor to you all that patch was coming out. Unless there are severly game disabling things that happen in the game, that haven't been addressed by Bhuric, get the fixes and move on. We have great people here that can work the bugs out for you, for the most part, take advantage of it. Like the previous post said, they've probably been working on this patch for ridiculous hours and are just as frustrated as you. They care about product quality just as much as you do, if not more, because their names are on it. If after putting together this expansion, testing it like crazy, and putting out three patches to fix what they have missed, they want to take a little siesta I am more than fine with that. Surely they've missed most of the summer do to this game, let them at least go around and enjoy life a little before requesting the bend to your needs.

gunter
Oct 11, 2007, 05:23 AM
they want to take a little siesta I am more than fine with that.

First, this is a your assumption,maybe they already dropped the support and you are only hoping.

Second,their greatest error IMO is to consider 3.13 the last one BEFORE releasing it,this is witnessed by the long amount of bug fixes that usually are justified only for the latest patch,usually.

Third, a Firaxis programmer earns I assume between 3000 and 8000 euros per month. Considering their salary is definitely high I can for sure justify tiny bugs but not the existing ones.

Fourth and last their constant lack of comunication to super fidel customers irritates me a lot.

dutchking
Oct 11, 2007, 05:32 AM
I agree with everything the Original Poster says. It's dissapointing that most of it is true. And the second poster too, I'm not surprised either that there will probably be no special channel of communication like that again. :(

classical_hero
Oct 11, 2007, 05:54 AM
I think FIRAXIS still had alot of time for real comfortable life with all the features you mentioned MrFrodo, since the last buggy patch for Civ3 Conquests and with your way of seeing things now they should do their job and fix the bugs they have left and adjust the promised features that didn´t work properly with C3C. I hope you got the point. ;)

Even in this Civ 4 thread you can read, that a lot of civers haven´t forgotten the betrayal FIRAXIS did with C3C and I think it´s normal that alot of people worry that this can happen again. Especially with a game that is as doomed by missconstruction as it is Civ 4 (here you can read why: http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=6023466&postcount=29).

I still have not forgotten to what happen with Conquests. They really need to fix it since there are still too many bugs with it. It also showed tha they are willing to leave buggy games without fixing them, which does not look good from a stand point of the customer. Which is the whole point of making games, to please the customer.

ImperialGuard
Oct 11, 2007, 06:45 AM
I think we all just have to come to terms with the fact that BTS was a "money grab" by Firaxis ....


They added some new leaders, new civs (not much effort required)
They added a couple new technologies/buildings (not much effort required)
They added corporations (enhanced religion concept)
They added espionage (dug out the code from Civ1 / Civ2)
Paid Blake for the AI work he'd already done and paid him to make an AI that actually worked good....
Borrowed mod's from Civ Community and packaged them in the game
Gave us a Beta of an upcoming new game they will release (Some sort of Space Game)
Gave us a Beta of an upcoming new game they will release (some sort of squad based game (XCOM?))
Paid someone a couple bucks to put together a "manual" (and I use that term very loosely)
did minimal QA on the product (e.g. paid their summer interns to test it)
did I miss anything ??


They're just milking the cash cow for one more Civ hit... we shouldn't expect a polished, work of art ........ we'll be lucky to get another patch.

It was sure nice of alexman(?) to give us a "heads up" on the 3.13 patch, but Firaxis has moved on .... thanks to sites like this they may hear the uproar from the lack of quality they are producing, but they're sitting in their offices thinking about there next games / consoles ....

...they may be back in 2 years sucking up to the community when "technology has improved to the point that we wanted to remake CIV in a way that honored the franchise blah blah blah" (e.g. Civ5) ...

:eek: sorry, sound bitter, but not really .... it's just the way I see it .... I actually enjoy BTS, the AI rocks, and can't wait for GOTM with BTS ....

just wanted to rant :D

vilemerchant
Oct 11, 2007, 06:51 AM
:eek: sorry, sound bitter, but not really .... it's just the way I see it .... I actually enjoy BTS, the AI rocks, and can't wait for GOTM with BTS ....

just wanted to rant :D

Despite the problems and bugs it's certainly a FAR better game than warlords. Warlords 2.08 made the AI basically inept at war, AI vs AI wars would be lucky to even see a city change hands. The new Agg-AI in BTS means nice big AI stacks that actually know how to attack and capture cities. Lots of fun!

Tridus
Oct 11, 2007, 07:09 AM
Unless there are severly game disabling things that happen in the game, that haven't been addressed by Bhuric, get the fixes and move on.

Oh, you mean like multiplayer sync problems?

All they need to do is release another patch that fixes the bugs their last patch created. Thats it. No new features. No balance changes. Just fix the new bugs.

As a paying customer, thats not asking too much. I'll certainly remember in the future if they DON'T fix it, and will take my money elsewhere.

Öjevind Lång
Oct 11, 2007, 02:49 PM
Oh, you mean like multiplayer sync problems?

All they need to do is release another patch that fixes the bugs their last patch created. Thats it. No new features. No balance changes. Just fix the new bugs.

As a paying customer, thats not asking too much. I'll certainly remember in the future if they DON'T fix it, and will take my money elsewhere.

I suck at moving things like dlls around, so using unofficial patches aren't really for me. I have tried, and I just muck things up. So while waiting for the official patch that may turn up at some time or other, I have reverted to playing the vanilla game. It's a nice, unbuggy game, especially with the 1.74 patch. I had forgotten how much fun it is.

I suspect that the people at Firaxis are much too busy with the new simplified console version of the game to bother about BtS. Still, if they never bother to fix BtS, I will certainly remember it, and such a circumstance would affect my future choices as a consumer.

Wodan
Oct 11, 2007, 03:17 PM
I suck at moving things like dlls around, so using unofficial patches aren't really for me. I have tried, and I just muck things up.
It wouldn't be that hard for Bhruic or someone to make a self-extracting zip that automatically puts the .dll into the default directory on your machine. This obviously would only be for people who installed the game into the default directory, but that's the exact people such as yourself.

Wodan

Bhruic
Oct 11, 2007, 03:58 PM
It wouldn't be that hard for Bhruic or someone to make a self-extracting zip that automatically puts the .dll into the default directory on your machine. This obviously would only be for people who installed the game into the default directory, but that's the exact people such as yourself.

Actually, it's pretty easy to snag the install directory from the registry... I'll put this on my "things to do" list. :P

Bh

Bhruic
Oct 11, 2007, 03:59 PM
Oh, you mean like multiplayer sync problems?

All they need to do is release another patch that fixes the bugs their last patch created. Thats it. No new features. No balance changes. Just fix the new bugs.

As a paying customer, thats not asking too much. I'll certainly remember in the future if they DON'T fix it, and will take my money elsewhere.

A lot of people have had success with turning off random events. Obviously not a fix, but if you're looking to enjoy MP, that could be the best way to do it for now.

Bh

MarkM
Oct 11, 2007, 04:01 PM
After the 3.13 effort several issues have remained and it is only thanks to Bhruic & friend that those issues are beeing fixed out.

My dard goes to Firaxis...and I question about their silence because it would be sufficient to say : " guys, we are aware that several issues are still present and we will work to release 3.15 within a month to fix them all " ........or : " guys,the 3.13 has been the last one so stop moaning and take it easy".

In your opinion which is the reason of their silence ?While it would be nice to know what their plans/timetable is, I also know that if I worked for Firaxis, there would be no way in H-E-double hockey sticks that I would ever post a status report at this site ever again. Not after the way alexman got reamed. We've bitten the hand that feeds us, sadly, and now we all live with the consequences. If your dog viciously attacks you, do you really have any obligation to keep petting it?

And it goes on in this thread even, with ImperialGuard's bizarre claim that BTS was conceived as nothing more than an attempt to "milk the cash cow" and did not at all add to the game. Whaaaaa??? It's like a neocon's insistence that the US is winning in Iraq. It really doesn't matter what the reality is any more, they are going to believe that til we leave (and then believe that leaving snatched defeat from the jaws of victory, just like Vietnam supposedly). Relating it back to BTS: Firaxis will be attacked no matter WHAT they post here, it is clear. SO why even bother? I certainly wouldn't.

Craterus22
Oct 11, 2007, 04:11 PM
We've bitten the hand that feeds us, sadly, and now we all live with the consequences.

I have seen people state this a number of times on the boards (heck even a mod typed up something similar)...

FYI

We feed them.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 11, 2007, 06:53 PM
Hell yea Craterus.

I really wish people would knock off this zealotous defending of what is basically nothing more than a stereotype of what a "programmer" does. Now, I am no expert and therefore cannot offer definitive judgement, but I think it is absolutely preposterous to position the programmer as some kind of deprived slave o.O For goodness sakes, no one is forcing them to be programmers. If they don't like their job situation they can quit, or they could have chosen a different career path in the first place. Regardless of what we do or say on here I think they will be just fine...

Öjevind Lång
Oct 11, 2007, 06:56 PM
Actually, it's pretty easy to snag the install directory from the registry... I'll put this on my "things to do" list. :P

Bh

I'd appreciate that a lot. The list of things you have fixed makes my mouth water. And I suspect that an later official patch would simply overwrite yours, is that correct?

ImperialGuard
Oct 11, 2007, 07:20 PM
And it goes on in this thread even, with ImperialGuard's bizarre claim that BTS was conceived as nothing more than an attempt to "milk the cash cow" and did not at all add to the game. Whaaaaa???

Technically I didn't say they did not add anything to the game, what I was illustrating (in my opinion) was that they produced BTS with minimal effort/cost

CIV4 expansion (which tens (hundreds?) of thousands have) + minimal effort/cost = opportunity to make sizeable profit....

.... based on this premise ("milk the cash cow") we shouldn't expect any communication from Firaxis, and maybe one more patch (to fix bugs introduced in 3.13).... after that I'd be surprised if we get anything else .... they've moved on to other things ...

And I don't think I'm trashing Firaxis here ... just theorizing as to the reason why they made BTS and the corresponding reason for the "alarming silence of Firaxis"

TheWilltoAct
Oct 11, 2007, 07:44 PM
Well I have heard that it is basically the biggest expansion to a civ game ever... now I do not know whether that is true or not but imo the things they added really really fleshed out the civ game, making it far more fun and interesting. The level of balance which exists in civ makes me think that simply "milking the cash cow" might not even be something that can be applied to a civ game... in the sense that any change to such a complex strategy intensive game has tremendous potential ramifications which the developers have to deal with.

Duuk
Oct 11, 2007, 10:28 PM
We've bitten the hand that feeds us

I just checked. Firaxis failed to pay me for taking BTS off of their hands.

Ergo, I believe I fed them.

gps
Oct 12, 2007, 12:34 AM
Well I have heard that it is basically the biggest expansion to a civ game ever... now I do not know whether that is true or not but imo the things they added really really fleshed out the civ game, making it far more fun and interesting.

And they also added a lot of bugs. Bugs for me at least make a game much less fun a a lot less interesting. As far as Civ III is concerend, I rather play PtW instead of Conquests. As far as Civ IV is concerned, I rather play Warlords. Should the Bugs of BtS never be fixed - and after the experiences with III you can't deny there's a slight chance, things might turn out the same way for IV as well - the 30 bucks spent for BtS for me would be cash thrown out of the window. So they better fix them, that's all we want, it's only fair, we remind them now and then. If not I can guarantee, I wont buy a second expansion for Civ V, because we've lerant the hard way already it propably won't get fixed properly anyway. And I probably also wouldn't buy the main installment and the first expansion. If that's what they want, I can only encurage them to continue selleing us Civ-Expansions that never get finished properly.

CivAgamemnon
Oct 12, 2007, 01:32 AM
I wonder if software falls under the purview of a consumer protection agency? :mischief: I think it's about time someone held these companies to the same standard that a gadget or a car is produced with. If a company like Ford made a car as buggy as BtS, they'd get their butts reamed with a 50 foot pole, courtesy of the U.S. Government. The new patch is like they fixed something wrong with the headlights on the car, but introduced another bug that effects the turn signals.

That being said, I agree we're the hand that feeds them, and they *bit* us. If we didn't buy their buggy products, they would not exist. Their silence just means that they simply don't care, and they know people will buy their stuff no matter what.

I've learned my lesson. Never again am I buying software until after a year has passed, no matter the temptation. It simply isn't worth the money or the hassle, or the wait time of a patch. I have plenty of other games to play that work better than BtS. Warlords or Vanilla for example. Or even my PS2. Just call me a disgruntled and pissed off customer.

MrWhereItsAt
Oct 12, 2007, 02:34 AM
They added espionage (dug out the code from Civ1 / Civ2)



:lol: This is the funniest thing I have seen in this thread to date. "Dug out the code"?

And c'mon guys, the patch may not perfect, but there's not many game companies out there that listen to what the fans want/want fixed more than Firaxis have, at least since the build-up to BTS began. That's the reason we got a patch so quickly that fixed and tweaked so many things.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 12, 2007, 02:53 AM
Uhm the game is still super super fun to play... so I think this might be getting a little out of proportion... o.O
I love BTS and I play it all day and night =P
So don't get so bent out of shape about the bugs that you decide the game isn't worth playing :/

And lol yeah that is funny MrWhereItsAt LOL

CivAgamemnon
Oct 12, 2007, 02:58 AM
Uhm the game is still super super fun to play... so I think this might be getting a little out of proportion... o.O
I love BTS and I play it all day and night =P
So don't get so bent out of shape about the bugs that you decide the game isn't worth playing :/

And lol yeah that is funny MrWhereItsAt LOL


Just a little, yes. It's a pattern, dude. Feels like they expect us to buy their products and beta-test them, report bugs to them, then they fix it. If it's a beta product, why don't they say so? :sad:

I guess it's plain frustration at their lack of responsiveness. Look at Bhruic, he seems to have fixed a lot of the stuff in a fraction of the time it took them. Makes you wonder what they're doing there. :eek: :lol:

Just needed to blow off steam. Going back to my Warlords game now. Give me a call when BtS finally gets ironed out. :p

vodlaian
Oct 12, 2007, 03:13 AM
Just a little, yes. It's a pattern, dude. Feels like they expect us to buy their products and beta-test them, report bugs to them, then they fix it. If it's a beta product, why don't they say so? :sad:


I have noticed that this has become a common trend amongst these companies. Instead of going through the normal beta testing period and making sure the game is as bug free as possible, they release the game unfinished, get everyone's cash, use their cash to go on vacation, then come back and finish the game. That way they get paid before having to even finish the product. Sure people can argue what I'm saying, then all I need to do is point out the many MANY games that get released with bugs which can be observed within a few minutes of playing and can be reproduced every time, there is no excuse for that. Software/game companies are one of the only groups who can get away with selling people unfinished products, they are also one of the only groups who somehow manage to make the customer look like the bad guy for complaining.

gps
Oct 12, 2007, 03:43 AM
So don't get so bent out of shape about the bugs that you decide the game isn't worth playing :/


Really don't want to discuss things further, just two comments:
It's my privilege to decide what I think is worth playing or spending money and time on.
And it's not your privilege to call me 'bent out of shape for that'.
:mischief:

TheWilltoAct
Oct 12, 2007, 04:12 AM
It's my privilege to say as I like, it's your privilege to disagree.

CivAgamemnon
Oct 12, 2007, 05:15 AM
So let's just agree to disagree, and leave it at that. The peace must be kept, lest we fall under the moderator's glare and rod! :lol:

We wouldn't be humans if we didn't disagree over a game we care so passionately for. Better to be human than Vulcan, sometimes. ;)

gunter
Oct 12, 2007, 05:37 AM
I am seeing that moderators here are intelligent people that let freely discuss and complain without censure. Of course insulting is not tolerated so please don't insult each other,let's forward them to Firaxis :D .. I'm joking of course.

Just a snapshot : changing a single dll with a new one also explained in a perfect way inside the read me is definetly easy even for computer rookies so it is enough to read carefully the short read me and the switch is immediately done with no risk. Bhruic my compliments again.

Back to the thread's title I encourage Firaxis to chat with forumers and they are surelly not late to do that. Everyone can make mistakes in terms of programming and in terms of total lack of comunication but these errors can be overtaken talking friendly with us,if they do not consider themselves rockstars of course. :mischief: ...

Please 2K guys, Civilization and Console are two words that don't stand together very well....therefore get rid of those kiddie arcade Civ Revolutions and get back to Civ core business,pc fields neighboorhood.

gps
Oct 12, 2007, 05:39 AM
We wouldn't be humans if we didn't disagree over a game we care so passionately for.

I am the last who has a problem with controverse discussions. But beeing called 'bent out of shape' for me is hard on the edge of beeing an insult. And that's not a privilege, if I read the forum rules correctly. Anyone disagrees? Peace! Thanks! :)

P.S.: Thanks gunter, that's exactly what I meant. Was just writing, while you already postet...

MarkM
Oct 12, 2007, 07:19 AM
I have seen people state this a number of times on the boards (heck even a mod typed up something similar)...

FYI

We feed them.No, you fed them when you bought BTS 3.0. With the 3.13 patch, they are feeding you. Firaxis did not get an extra dime from you for that.

jray
Oct 12, 2007, 07:25 AM
It wouldn't be that hard for Bhruic or someone to make a self-extracting zip that automatically puts the .dll into the default directory on your machine. This obviously would only be for people who installed the game into the default directory, but that's the exact people such as yourself.

Wodan

But wouldn't that overwrite the vanilla DLL? How about making an installation program that re-names the vanilla DLL to CvGameCoreDLL.bak, and when it's uninstalled, reverts to it?

Methos
Oct 12, 2007, 07:39 AM
While it would be nice to know what their plans/timetable is, I also know that if I worked for Firaxis, there would be no way in H-E-double hockey sticks that I would ever post a status report at this site ever again. Not after the way alexman got reamed. We've bitten the hand that feeds us, sadly, and now we all live with the consequences.

I agree and find the title of this thread humorous. After the way Alex was treated, I'd be shocked if Firaxis informed us beforehand of a patch. Remember that Firaxis is not required to inform us of anything. If they wish to inform us prior to its release, than its because they want to, not because they have to.

The statement of "biting the hand that feeds you" isn't in regards to Firaxis and BTS, but is in regards to "attacking" the individual who was being nice enough to pass information to us. The small group of CFC'er "bit him", so now he's stopped "feeding us". I hear people saying that he should act more professional, but in the same instance that group that was attacking him should act more adult.

Sorry, I'm getting off topic. Basically, I totally expect silence from Firaxis. They have learned what happens when they "feed us" information, so what reason do they have to do it again?

Civinator
Oct 12, 2007, 08:23 AM
so what reason do they have to do it again?

They have none. And I´m very sad about the way Alexman was treated by the Civ 4 community. He even gave us some of the best informations to understand mechanism of Civ 3 and for all that thank you very much Alexman.

On the other side, I think we have a lot of reasons to remember everyone and at every possible opportunity about the way FIRAXIS left Civ 3 Conquest without fixing and adjusting the things they should do.

Even there, at first there was silence and then the announcement to do something quite different (Civ 4) and to leave all customers who have paid for their Civ 3 products with all the buggy features they did advertise so that these customers had bought these products. And this silence lasts until today... No word, that at least we can try to fix these bugs ourselves, no word about integrating the still existing no-raze-solution with Civ 3.

There are parallels in that probleme and the theme of this thread and it is no wonder that this feeling always comes back to the civers. Who behaves once like that, can do it twice and always again. Blizzard gave their community the last patch for Starcraft more than ten years after this game was released. FIRAXIS, please help your C3C customers and give them some support.

Öjevind Lång
Oct 12, 2007, 08:27 AM
Just a snapshot : changing a single dll with a new one also explained in a perfect way inside the read me is definetly easy even for computer rookies so it is enough to read carefully the short read me and the switch is immediately done with no risk.

It is not. I tried and messed things up. Be tolerant.

Öjevind Lång
Oct 12, 2007, 08:38 AM
I agree and find the title of this thread humorous. After the way Alex was treated, I'd be shocked if Firaxis informed us beforehand of a patch. Remember that Firaxis is not required to inform us of anything. If they wish to inform us prior to its release, than its because they want to, not because they have to.

The statement of "biting the hand that feeds you" isn't in regards to Firaxis and BTS, but is in regards to "attacking" the individual who was being nice enough to pass information to us. The small group of CFC'er "bit him", so now he's stopped "feeding us". I hear people saying that he should act more professional, but in the same instance that group that was attacking him should act more adult.

Sorry, I'm getting off topic. Basically, I totally expect silence from Firaxis. They have learned what happens when they "feed us" information, so what reason do they have to do it again?

You are contradicting yourself. First, you tell us that the "hand that was feeding us" belonged to "the individual who was being nice enough to pass information to us", not to Firaxis. Then you declare that you "expect total silence from Firaxis" because "they have learned what happens when they 'feed us' information." You can't have it both ways.

Considering how buggy the recent patch is, it is quite reasonable to expect a new patch from Firaxis fairly soon; and Firaxis posting information that they are working on it would be simple courtesy to customers. If, for some reason, they don't want to post the news here, they can do it at their own website. However, that website has links to both CFC and Apolyton, so presumably they regard those two websites as semi-official sources of information.

Duuk
Oct 12, 2007, 09:21 AM
Sorry, I'm getting off topic. Basically, I totally expect silence from Firaxis. They have learned what happens when they "feed us" information, so what reason do they have to do it again?

I'm going to both agree and disagree with you on this point. My future in politics is assured :D

Alexman released information, which was good. The abuse directed at Alexman was bad. Alexman reacted badly, which is also inexcusable but understandable since he's a programmer, not a public relations employee.

All in all, Alexman should be thanked for his personal efforts...

...but Firaxis should be lambasted for allowing that trainwreck to happen. Firaxis should have at least one full time employee handling customer relations, and I suspect they do but somehow don't feel that CFC and Poly deserve "full credit". 99% of the vitriol that was leveled on Alexman could have been avoided by a Firaxis employee saying "Whoops, our bad - give us some extra time". The other 1% of abuse was by people that just enjoy abusing other people on teh internets.

Firaxis' complete lack of interaction here is shameful and deserves all the scorn and mockery that humanity can bring to bear. It's tragic that a guy trying to be helpful (like Alexman) had to get flamed to the point of doing something "high school" in response. I'm sure that Alexman knows (now that it's several days later) that his response was wrong and childish, but I'm also sure that he will never, ever try to be helpful again. That's a loss to the community, but Firaxis caused that disaster, not CFC.

Wodan
Oct 12, 2007, 09:48 AM
But wouldn't that overwrite the vanilla DLL?
No... it would put the dll into the BtS directory, if that's where it was supposed to go. If it was a patch for vanilla, then yes, it would go into the vanilla directory. This is all easily do-able when you create a .zip.

How about making an installation program that re-names the vanilla DLL to CvGameCoreDLL.bak, and when it's uninstalled, reverts to it?
Sure, but that's more trouble. You need to be a programmer and have the appropriate utilities. The .zip trick, OTOH, anybody can do.

You are contradicting yourself. First, you tell us that the "hand that was feeding us" belonged to "the individual who was being nice enough to pass information to us", not to Firaxis. Then you declare that you "expect total silence from Firaxis" because "they have learned what happens when they 'feed us' information." You can't have it both ways.
Aren't you nitpicking his wording? You're right that he contradicted himself. But, replace the 2nd "they" with "someone". The intent of his statement is accurate.

Considering how buggy the recent patch is, it is quite reasonable to expect a new patch from Firaxis fairly soon
We have a patch, an unoffical one. It seems more reasonable to me for Firaxis to wait a while to see if the community discovers any more issues.

Wodan

onedreamer
Oct 12, 2007, 10:04 AM
is there any chance people will stop whining on these board ?

warpstorm
Oct 12, 2007, 10:05 AM
On the other side, I think we have a lot of reasons to remember everyone and at every possible opportunity about the way FIRAXIS left Civ 3 Conquest without fixing and adjusting the things they should do.


Conquests was a totally different beast than BTS. Conquests was primarily contracted out to BreakAway to build, but we weren't on contract to support it after it shipped (and Firaxis didn't have the staff to - why would they have contracted it out if they did?).

Duuk
Oct 12, 2007, 10:06 AM
is there any chance people will stop whining on these board ?

Yes. As soon as Firaxis patches all their mistakes.

So probably not.

onedreamer
Oct 12, 2007, 10:12 AM
why don't they whine with Firaxis then ? These boards are not run by Firaxis or Take2, they aren't official boards.

Duuk
Oct 12, 2007, 10:18 AM
why don't they whine with Firaxis then ? These boards are not run by Firaxis or Take2, they aren't official boards.

Find me a link to Firaxis official forum, and I'll post there hourly. I promise.

Öjevind Lång
Oct 12, 2007, 10:36 AM
We have a patch, an unoffical one. It seems more reasonable to me for Firaxis to wait a while to see if the community discovers any more issues.

Wodan

I'm not prepared to thank Firaxis for Bhruic's patch. Also, as I have stated before, I simply am no good at editing dlls and the like, so I'll wait for an official patch. Correction: I'll go do something else, until the day. If it comes.

Alll kudos to Bhruic (and to Solver before him), all the same.

onedreamer
Oct 12, 2007, 10:39 AM
Find me a link to Firaxis official forum, and I'll post there hourly. I promise.

the fact that they don't have one should suggest you that they don't care of people whining on forums and that you should use other means.

Duuk
Oct 12, 2007, 10:53 AM
the fact that they don't have one should suggest you that they don't care of people whining on forums and that you should use other means.

Or that I shouldn't pay for their products anymore, since they don't solicit the opinions of their customers.

Methos
Oct 12, 2007, 11:30 AM
You are contradicting yourself.

Yes and no. Alex isn't allowed to post the changelog without Firaxis's permission (if he wants to keep his job). So in a way Firaxis was "feeding" us since they allowed it. Though, I should have worded it better and used something other than "they". My mistake.

BSmith1068
Oct 12, 2007, 12:02 PM
I guess it's plain frustration at their lack of responsiveness. Look at Bhruic, he seems to have fixed a lot of the stuff in a fraction of the time it took them. Makes you wonder what they're doing there. :eek: :lol:


Double Standard. If Bhruic introduces a new bug, or some other quirkyness, he will be forgived because it is not an official patch and he is just trying to help out. On the other hand, if Firaxis introduces a new bug they get lambasted and accused of conspiricy.

I am not getting into the arguement on how Firaxis is handling the current situation (because I think it is useless). My point is that as soon as something is "official" it takes a lot more time to release (extensive QA, multiple level of reviews, internal beaurocracy, decision to see if they can identify and fix more bugs/issues than the ones currently obvious, the list goes on).

Bhuric (or anyone for that matter) can just go do it. If it is not perfect, no one cares, because the expectation that it is perfect is not there.

vilemerchant
Oct 12, 2007, 12:09 PM
Double Standard. If Bhruic introduces a new bug, or some other quirkyness, he will be forgived because it is not an official patch and he is just trying to help out. On the other hand, if Firaxis introduces a new bug they get lambasted and accused of conspiricy.

LOL! Bhruic took days. Firaxis took months. Firaxis CAUSED bugs. Bhruic FIXED their bugs and didn't cause any.

Wodan
Oct 12, 2007, 12:12 PM
I'm not prepared to thank Firaxis for Bhruic's patch.
Uhh... irrelevant? Nobody asked you to.

Also, as I have stated before, I simply am no good at editing dlls and the like, so I'll wait for an official patch. Correction: I'll go do something else, until the day. If it comes.
You have a solution, and you choose not to use it. There's no lack of assistance from people here at CFC, to overcome your dll handicaps. All you have to do is ask for help, instead of stating your unwillingness to even try.

I'm at the point of "Aw, come on."

they don't solicit the opinions of their customers.
Seems to me all you know is that they don't solicit opinions publicly on CFC. They may solicit any number of people via PM, who they locate here. Or, they may do in-person focus groups from people they find at EBgames stores. Or of people they find at conventions. Or all of these, or others.

A quick perusal of the manual did show me that there is a phone number and web site for Take2 feedback and support. Why don't you try using that? I'm sure on their web site you could also find an address and phone number, if you prefer to give them your feedback in written form.

Here's the US address:
Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. 622 Broadway
New York, NY 10012 (646) 536-2842

There's an address in Europe, too. They also have a nice on-line submission form on their web page, specifically asking for feedback.

Aside: I did also note that they specifically directed people to CFC. So, they officially acknowledge and direct people to the community here, for support and assistance, in addition to their offical phone number and web site (and address / phone). IMO that is de-facto encouragement of the so-called unofficial patch.

You know, I think the word "interim" might be better than "unofficial". It's really a patch to tide us over until Firaxis is able to do one. Isn't that another way to look at it?

Wodan

CivAgamemnon
Oct 12, 2007, 12:15 PM
I'm sorry, but I honestly don't care anymore. I think, for now, I'm getting off this board and just go back to playing Warlords until things are resolved. It's just getting too stressful. I'd rather not say something I'll wind up regretting. Ciao. :)

BSmith1068
Oct 12, 2007, 01:34 PM
LOL! Bhruic took days. Firaxis took months. Firaxis CAUSED bugs. Bhruic FIXED their bugs and didn't cause any.

I think you misread my post. I am not debating what Bhruic did or how long it took him. I am explaining why it is possible for someone like Bhruic to do what he did (with little to no "downside" if there is a problem), and why it takes much longer for Firaxis to release something (if at all).

jray
Oct 12, 2007, 01:51 PM
Originally Posted by jray http://forums.civfanatics.com/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?p=6042916#post6042916)
But wouldn't that overwrite the vanilla DLL?

No... it would put the dll into the BtS directory, if that's where it was supposed to go. If it was a patch for vanilla, then yes, it would go into the vanilla directory. This is all easily do-able when you create a .zip.


Oops, poor use of the word "vanilla" on my part. I meant the Firaxis-provided BtS DLL. To be more specific, why is it any different for multiplayer folks to suffer from out-of-synch DLL's at My Games\... than out-of-synch DLL's at Program Files\...? It just seems silly to me to gimp the ability to use the DLL in CustomAssets without a mod, unless I'm not understanding the real benefit for multiplayer.

Wodan
Oct 12, 2007, 01:56 PM
Oops, poor use of the word "vanilla" on my part. I meant the Firaxis-provided BtS DLL. To be more specific, why is it any different for multiplayer folks to suffer from out-of-synch DLL's at My Games\... than out-of-synch DLL's at Program Files\...? It just seems silly to me to gimp the ability to use the DLL in CustomAssets without a mod, unless I'm not understanding the real benefit for multiplayer.
I think we're talking about 2 different things. One is putting the patch in the correct location. Two is the OOS issues. I could be wrong, but it's my understanding that the causes of the latter aren't related to the former.

Wodan

jray
Oct 12, 2007, 02:01 PM
I think we're talking about 2 different things. One is putting the patch in the correct location. Two is the OOS issues. I could be wrong, but it's my understanding that the causes of the latter aren't related to the former.


Ah, it looks like I was accidentally continuing a thread of discussion over in the Unofficial Patch thread. There, Jaybe said this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaybe http://forums.civfanatics.com/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?p=6040724#post6040724)
DLLs are disallowed from CustomAssets because of multi-player games. The game would (or might) not detect that the DLLs were different, leading to sync (and not to mention cheating) problems.

And I responded by asking why the placement of DLL's in CustomAssets is such a big deal, because people could just as easily have out-of-synch or cheat DLL's at Program Files instead.

So I'm still curious as to the reason that DLL's were booted from CustomAssets.

ripple01
Oct 12, 2007, 03:01 PM
Double Standard. If Bhruic introduces a new bug, or some other quirkyness, he will be forgived because it is not an official patch and he is just trying to help out. On the other hand, if Firaxis introduces a new bug they get lambasted and accused of conspiricy.

Um, because we're not paying Bhruic for his work and we did pay Firaxis for theirs?

Cheers,
ripple01

MrFrodo
Oct 12, 2007, 03:07 PM
I really have a hard time grasping why people are so upset. :confused:

I guess folks here just take this game a lot more seriously than I do. Trying to analyze why a patch introduced new bugs is a big waste of time. It happens all the time. QA misses stuff because there is too much to test in a short amount of time, or a last second change goes in with ver little testing,. It isn't the same thing when a community member fixes something. With all the beauracracy that goes with releasing a new patch to the public, they couldn't fix a typo and turn around a new patch in a matter of days. Plus, quite frankly, if they actually let the ultra hardcore fanatics influence every decision they made their product would not appeal to the wider market of people that just want to play the game and have fun. The fact that many of the denizens of this forum ripped Firaxis a new one because a developer went out of his way to feed you good early informaion is a shame.

Obvoiusly, we all very much enjoy this game, and somebody did a pretty decent job because we are all here spending our time talking about it when we can't play it. As the old saying goes "Don't bite the hand that feeds you ".

Anyway, Good Luck with your whines!

SwordofStriker
Oct 12, 2007, 03:32 PM
Um, because we're not paying Bhruic for his work and we did pay Firaxis for theirs?

Cheers,
ripple01

Agreed.

It is a double standard, but that doesn't make it inherently wrong. If a community member takes time out of their own schedule to bring us a patch and it has some mistakes, I can easily be forgiving and patiently wait for a fix. However, when industry professionals who have received my money for a product make mistakes, I expect it corrected post-haste, and the longer I have to wait for said correction, the less likely it will be that I am forgiving and patient.

Granted I don't know that Bhruic isn't a programmer, but the fact is, what he did was 100% charity work on his part and Firaxis programmers are paid employees so they most certainly should be held to a higher standard. Even if Bhruic is a programmer, he was not operating in a professional capacity and therefore should not be held to the same standards as those who are.

Also, the argument that they don't make any money on patches is debatable and IMO incorrect. Their patching process and customer support for a flawed product will certainly make them money if handled well. On the other hand, it will cost them future earnings if handled poorly. As an example, I will say that there is at least one software company making games right now that I have turned more than a few people away from. That was without actively doing so but merely providing information when the subject of their games arose, so yes, working patches or the lack thereof can most certainly be a financial investment or potential loss for a software company.

gunter
Oct 12, 2007, 04:02 PM
People have different opinions on the matter here,the discussion output is plenty of personal point of views. Despiting I can agree or not or I can be exactly on the same frequency of some forumers meanwhile I would definitely blame other ones there have always been the basic rule ; a discussion.


I am still waiting for a missing component to JOIN here

King Flevance
Oct 12, 2007, 04:06 PM
I ain't going to jump into alot of this but the reason I think it should be patched officially soon is for Multi-player. (The game was built from the ground up for multiplayer and advertised as such.)

Also, I enjoy BTS. Although I will be frustrated an quit feeding Firaxis my money if they don't further address this. As this will be 2 games in a row they just abandoned. I personally doubt that this will be the final patch. It just seems way to rediculous to leave off on. But I also wouldn't be shocked if it happened considering Firaxis's support level since the release of 4.

I am along the mindset that we feed them instead of the other way around. If you think Firaxis is feeding you, you are a horrible consumer. People like 2k see you coming a mile away. Consumers define the market, not the otherway around.
To use a very quote from the game: Everything is worth what it's purchaser will pay for it.

How much is Civ 5 worth to you if they don't ever patch Civ 4? Making 2 titles in a row that were abandon - regardless of the reasonings on both, it would be fact nonetheless. If 4 was never patched again form here on out, Civ 5 isn't worth much to me. And will actually degrade in value as expansions come out.

What happened to Alexman was a bad deal. But as I have said before, the information he released should have been posted on the webpage for Civ 4 not on a fansite. It was a simple passionate mistake and the "fans" here punished him severly for it. He was doing the community a 'favor' by announcing it here. And I agree that I do not expect him to do so again in the future, I think it shouldn't have happened that way in the first place. It should have been released on the public Civ 4 site, (the one that directs everyone here) and then only discussed here. Such as the Dennis Shirk comment back in vanilla days was.

However, I do enjoy BTS and I doubt that future efforts on a patch have been abandoned although I understand it isn't a far-fetched possibility. If the latter is the case, then anyone disappointed should avoid buying Civ 5. As I garauntee 5 would be abandoned in the same fashion as many consumers on this very forum will still be pre-ordering 5 to show their devotion to a title that abandons a project before it is finished to work on the next idea they plan to abandon when they can't squeeze another dime from their fanbase.

gunter
Oct 12, 2007, 04:17 PM
It should have been released on the public Civ 4 site, (the one that directs everyone here)


Nope, I came here just Googling

King Flevance
Oct 12, 2007, 04:23 PM
Naw, what I mean is if you go to CivIV.com, their site directs you here. This is where the Alexman info on the patch should have been released. I don't know why they pay for server space for that site when they never use it.

BSmith1068
Oct 15, 2007, 08:29 AM
Granted I don't know that Bhruic isn't a programmer, but the fact is, what he did was 100% charity work on his part and Firaxis programmers are paid employees so they most certainly should be held to a higher standard. Even if Bhruic is a programmer, he was not operating in a professional capacity and therefore should not be held to the same standards as those who are.


And that is exactly the point of my original post. I was not debating if/when Firaxis should fix this patch or release another. If they created game breaking issues, like seems to have happened with multiplayer, then yes they should update/fix as soon as possible.

The whole point of my original post was that you can not compare Firaxis with an individual like Bhruic precisely because we hold them to a higher standard. It is unfair to say "If Bhruic can do it in 3 days, why can't Firaxis? See - Firaxis is incompetent!"

Gibsie
Oct 15, 2007, 08:55 AM
Indeed, and we should hold the company with dedicated staff that designed the entire game in the first place to a higher standard than this Bhruic fellow.

Wodan
Oct 15, 2007, 11:31 AM
What you're confusing is "higher standard" with "speed of response".

These are two separate things. Faster does not always mean better. And, better does not always include faster. It can, and it sometimes does, respectively.

Every single one of us would like instant gratification. The world doesn't work that way.

Personally, I think the current setup is pretty darn ideal. We get patches within days from Solver or Bhruic, and we also get company sanction later when they are able to incorporate the fixes.

People who want both simply want to "have their cake and eat it too". You can ask for it, but to get obstinate and offended when it doesn't happen strikes me as an unreasonable expectation.

Wodan

TheWilltoAct
Oct 15, 2007, 12:53 PM
It makes sense to feel offended if you think of it as the company (Firaxis) failing to deliver a polished product to their customers. A customer has the right to expect a quality product, and to complain when that expectation is not met.

vilemerchant
Oct 15, 2007, 01:10 PM
What you're confusing is "higher standard" with "speed of response".


Firaxis seem to be failing on both those counts :(

r_rolo1
Oct 15, 2007, 01:12 PM
My opinion is that the today's 3.13 patch is the alpha or beta version of the definitive patch that Firaxis really intended to make ( they messed up too much stuff to the corrections they actually made.... I think that clearly shows that the patch project was wider than its current form ), and by some reason ( probably because of the fans or wage payers pressure ( choose one ) they decided to release it as it was. The best decision? Probably not.....
They intend to make the whole job? I'm not sure ( I remember the tragic end of Civ III Conquests... ), but it would be stupid not to, even if to not loose the core of the fans ( people are not getting younger and some loose interest ) that seriously helped Firaxis to make the games and in which Firaxis unofficially outsourced the troubleshooting and tech support ( just look at the CivIV.com site: last update from Firaxis to that site was the release of patch 1.61.... the only updated thing are the links to the CFC and to the "Greek" forum last updated threads ). Things are quite sour between a significant part of the fans of CivIV and Firaxis and letting BtS as a ghost ship may make some people to leave Civing for good... ( or just play older versions... for Firaxis is the same thing )

Wodan
Oct 15, 2007, 01:44 PM
It makes sense to feel offended if you think of it as the company (Firaxis) failing to deliver a polished product to their customers. A customer has the right to expect a quality product, and to complain when that expectation is not met.
Sure, and I agree they snarfed up. What's happening though, is people are saying, "See, Solver and Bhruic can do it in 2 days, so why can't Firaxis?" That's where the disconnect is happening.

Wodan

Methos
Oct 15, 2007, 01:58 PM
I don't think a lot of people understand the process a patch has to go through before being released and I'm not just talking about the beta-testing, but from the beginning. Anyone who's worked at any sort of medium size company and bigger knows how slow it takes to get anything done. Solver and Bhruic are individuals working on their own. They make all decisions and do not have to answer, or seek a higher authority to do it. Firaxis does not have that capability. I don't think people understand the full process.

Wodan
Oct 15, 2007, 02:16 PM
Right! And as things stand now, we get both solutions. Both the individual / fast response, and the full company response. That's why I think we, as consumers, have a good situation as it stands right now.

Not that things couldn't be improved... no one person and no company is perfect... but let's ask for things that are reasonable. e.g., asking for an official Firaxis representative to post on the official site is reasonable. IMO asking for Firaxis to "change the laws of Physics" (for you Star Trek fans out there) is not.

Anyway, just my two cents. :)

Wodan

vilemerchant
Oct 15, 2007, 02:19 PM
Right! And as things stand now, we get both solutions. Both the individual / fast response, and the full company response. That's why I think we, as consumers, have a good situation as it stands right now.

This is incredible logic. The only reason we even need the unofficial patches is because Firaxis regularly puts out patches that are COMPLETELY SCREWED. Just how that can be twisted into a positive thing I don't know! :lol:

LiberiGlacialis
Oct 15, 2007, 02:24 PM
Hey, 3.13 isn't as screwed up for Single-Player as the dreaded 3.03. And Bh hasn't made as many changes as Solver's Patch did for the 3.0X. Of course, he's still working on it (by the looks of things).

Work with what you get. Don't forget, you don't like something about a patch/unit/building/leader/whatever, you usually can change it yourself for this Civ.

Wodan
Oct 15, 2007, 02:30 PM
This is incredible logic. The only reason we even need the unofficial patches is because Firaxis regularly puts out patches that are COMPLETELY SCREWED. Just how that can be twisted into a positive thing I don't know! :lol:
You're overstating the situation. One has only to look at the change list to see how many things were fixed. Yes, they loused up 2 or 3 things. However, that's only 2-3% of the change list, if that. 2-3% is a far cry from COMPLETELY SCREWED.

Wodan

SwordofStriker
Oct 15, 2007, 02:34 PM
You're overstating the situation. One has only to look at the change list to see how many things were fixed. Yes, they loused up 2 or 3 things. However, that's only 2-3% of the change list, if that. 2-3% is a far cry from COMPLETELY SCREWED.

Wodan

I understand what you're saying, and when looking at the patch from a single player perspective you're absolutely right.

However, some people are more interested in the multi-player aspect of the game, which is as vilemerchant stated, "completely screwed" for many people who had no problem previously.

Wodan
Oct 15, 2007, 02:47 PM
I have to say you've got me there. I haven't played MP in a while (though I've been meaning to get back into it... I tend to go in waves), but I have heard some alarming reports of, how to say, rampant disconnectivity. That would annoy me to no end, during one of my MP "waves".

That's good question, though. Are the MP problems (hotseat games aside) something that an unofficial patch is incapable of fixing, because of the nature of the MP interface? Thus, the only solution is an official patch? Anyone know?

Wodan

Minoan
Oct 15, 2007, 03:04 PM
I have to say you've got me there. I haven't played MP in a while (though I've been meaning to get back into it... I tend to go in waves), but I have heard some alarming reports of, how to say, rampant disconnectivity. That would annoy me to no end, during one of my MP "waves".

That's good question, though. Are the MP problems (hotseat games aside) something that an unofficial patch is incapable of fixing, because of the nature of the MP interface? Thus, the only solution is an official patch? Anyone know?

Wodan

If I recall correctly, the multiplayer issue is hardcoded, and can't be fixed by a modder. So yeah, it'd need an offical patch.

toft
Oct 15, 2007, 03:44 PM
I don't think a lot of people understand the process a patch has to go through before being released and I'm not just talking about the beta-testing, but from the beginning. Anyone who's worked at any sort of medium size company and bigger knows how slow it takes to get anything done. Solver and Bhruic are individuals working on their own. They make all decisions and do not have to answer, or seek a higher authority to do it. Firaxis does not have that capability. I don't think people understand the full process.

I fully understand the process, and I still think it's ineffective in every way possible. Firaxis is heading down a path that is hard to turn back from. When they lose the customers goodwill, then they have nothing.

Sony Online Entertainment is already on my list of companies I dont buy from, and Firaxis/take2 arent far from ending in that list.

Dont get me wrong. I love Civilization as an idea, its just sad that the branche has been lost in the grinding machine of take2, and not some more passionate publisher.

Dagta
Oct 15, 2007, 04:18 PM
It's the silence that's so frustrating. It's not difficult to say, "We're working on another patch. No ETA"

Many of us remember how Conquests was left hanging with problems. I love playing Civ but I'm wondering if this is going to be a repeat problem with the second expansion pack.

I, too, refuse to purchase a SOE game. Star Wars Galaxies was the biggest disappointment I've ever had with a PC game.

Chode
Oct 15, 2007, 06:31 PM
Yup, the masses ruined it tbh.

no, firaxis ruined it by releasing terrible patches that had maybe 20 minutes of playtesting max

MarkM
Oct 15, 2007, 10:14 PM
What's "alarming" to me is that you guys don't understand why Firaxis is silent. Their future silence was roundly predicted in the alexman-bashing thread. This thread is equivalent to wondering why your boss doesn't come around to chat much after you mock him publicly ...

Chode
Oct 15, 2007, 10:54 PM
What's "alarming" to me is that you guys don't understand why Firaxis is silent. Their future silence was roundly predicted in the alexman-bashing thread. This thread is equivalent to wondering why your boss doesn't come around to chat much after you mock him publicly ...

Yeah if your boss always walked around with his zipper undone and uncomfortably failing to hide his flatulence every 30 seconds or so

Methos
Oct 15, 2007, 11:28 PM
no, firaxis ruined it by releasing terrible patches that had maybe 20 minutes of playtesting max

Yeah if your boss always walked around with his zipper undone and uncomfortably failing to hide his flatulence every 30 seconds or so

Warned! - The first quote is borderline trolling, as you making an outlandish statement. The second quote for spam, since it doesn't pertain to the discussion.

vilemerchant
Oct 15, 2007, 11:33 PM
Warned! - The first quote is borderline trolling, as you making an outlandish statement.

I agree that it's outlandish to suggest it was tested for 20 minutes. It's quite obvious it wasn't tested for anywhere near that long!

Warned! - You probably expected this when you posted.

Methos
Oct 15, 2007, 11:44 PM
I don't mind if someone wishes to post their complaints, but please do so in a reasonable manner. There's no need for such outlandish statements, as they only turn it from a discussion into a flamewar. Keep it reasonable. Note that goes both ways.

Mesix
Oct 15, 2007, 11:46 PM
I have to say you've got me there. I haven't played MP in a while (though I've been meaning to get back into it... I tend to go in waves), but I have heard some alarming reports of, how to say, rampant disconnectivity. That would annoy me to no end, during one of my MP "waves".

That's good question, though. Are the MP problems (hotseat games aside) something that an unofficial patch is incapable of fixing, because of the nature of the MP interface? Thus, the only solution is an official patch? Anyone know?

Wodan

I've had no problems with multiplayer using 3.13. My friend and I have played several LAN games totaling 40+ hours of game play since updating and have not had any issues at all.

Mesix
Oct 15, 2007, 11:48 PM
It's the silence that's so frustrating. It's not difficult to say, "We're working on another patch. No ETA"

Many of us remember how Conquests was left hanging with problems. I love playing Civ but I'm wondering if this is going to be a repeat problem with the second expansion pack.

I, too, refuse to purchase a SOE game. Star Wars Galaxies was the biggest disappointment I've ever had with a PC game.

For me, Master of Orion 3 takes the cake.

Bhruic
Oct 15, 2007, 11:54 PM
For me, Master of Orion 3 will be the all time biggest loser or a PC game.

Ha! Don't get me started on Master of Orion 3!

At least this time I've got source code to work with.

Bh

lulu135
Oct 16, 2007, 03:08 AM
What's "alarming" to me is that you guys don't understand why Firaxis is silent. Their future silence was roundly predicted in the alexman-bashing thread. This thread is equivalent to wondering why your boss doesn't come around to chat much after you mock him publicly ...

There were maybe 10 loudmouths persistently posting in that thread. It is extremely unprofessional for company representatives to alter their public behavior based on such a tiny sample. Unlike the average poster, this is their full time job, they ought to be above such petty nonsense.

The first quote is borderline trolling, as you making an outlandish statement.
I wish I could agree with you, but his statement was merely an exaggerated version of the truth. I have worked in software development, and I know firsthand that some bugs are inevitable in any complex system. However, the kind of bugs that would be obvious to almost anybody during normal use of the software are not inevitable, and point to the fact that Firaxis has a completely broken QA/release process. I'm not pointing fingers at any individuals, but it is sadly obvious that 3.13 testing was far from adequate. And let's not even get started on 3.03 - "built from a wrong branch"??? Such a thing would not be even remotely possible at any software development shop that wasn't completely screwed up.

toft
Oct 16, 2007, 03:27 AM
...And let's not even get started on 3.03 - "built from a wrong branch"??? Such a thing would not be even remotely possible at any software development shop that wasn't completely screwed up.

Makes me wonder... have their main/seasoned/veteran programmers moved on to "revolution" and assigned whats left of civ4 to an intern? :crazyeye:

omnimutant
Oct 16, 2007, 03:34 AM
Age old argument, with an age old answer. Don't sell crappy products that don't work. It's as simple as that.

Problem is, we got so used to patches over the past 15 years of gaming, that what should in any other product, be a major exception has become the norm with regards to software. No other industry can get away with selling such broken/defective products freely to the public. In a sense we brought this on ourselves buy continuing to buy from companies that release unfinished/buggy crap. None of this is new or shocking, just the reality of the situation.

I give Firaxis credit for at least releasing a patch, which is more then one can say anymore about a lot of major game companies. Companies like Activision, and EA, just to name a few, have given up on making patches so much that the only patches you do see come from Major releases, or ones that the developer has to make with their own out of pocket resources. I'm not saying it's right, thats just how it is.

It's no wonder so many companies are gearing for consoles, because in that world most of the time, if it's buggy, your stuck with it, and thats it.

Soneji
Oct 16, 2007, 03:44 AM
Yes, thats why I think Firaxis are going to the consoles... so they can sell buggy crap and no one can do a thing about it once they have finalised all the discs!

gunter
Oct 16, 2007, 06:11 AM
What's "alarming" to me is that you guys don't understand why Firaxis is silent. Their future silence was roundly predicted in the alexman-bashing thread. This thread is equivalent to wondering why your boss doesn't come around to chat much after you mock him publicly ...

I don't know and I didn't read that Alexman-bashing thread ( BTW do you have a link please ? ) therefore I can't judge it.

Anyway if I didn't read it I can say that it seems to me not quite fair to get offended by some thread statements and as a consequence of that close the whole company press/fans relationships.

We can say that the Fireaxis' war weariness is always on, despite time,peace treaties,non aggression pacts,mutual defense agreements and resources offered ( Dj Anjon and Bhruic for instance are the great scientist leaders ) ..... ... should we start to use some expionage points to drain infos ? ;)

warpstorm
Oct 16, 2007, 07:55 AM
Makes me wonder... have their main/seasoned/veteran programmers moved on to "revolution"

Actually, Soren (who was lead before BTS) left Firaxis totally to work on Spore.

Wodan
Oct 16, 2007, 10:59 AM
I've had no problems with multiplayer using 3.13. My friend and I have played several LAN games totaling 40+ hours of game play since updating and have not had any issues at all.
That's good news! Are the people having problems just because they have different versions of patches, then?

Wodan

Wodan
Oct 16, 2007, 11:14 AM
Yes, thats why I think Firaxis are going to the consoles... so they can sell buggy crap and no one can do a thing about it once they have finalised all the discs!
Consoles require much more exhaustive testing precisely because you can't patch it.

The reason to go to consoles is that the programming and testing is all easier and standard because you have one fixed, stable platform, instead of a different hardware setup on every single customer (which is what the PC version has to deal with).

Wodan

Perfxion
Oct 16, 2007, 11:51 AM
People who are upset are forgetting THREE MAJOR rules of software.

1: Consoles have set hardware, every PS3 is th same, every X-Box, every Wii, they are all the same. So making software to match the hardware is easy and does not have the long bug test process as PC games because every code change can be predicted.

2: On the other hand, no 10 people have the same PC. Just look at how many different companies make PCs, and look at all the different internal products available to customize a PC. Software/games have a hard time testing because there are SO MANY people with different products that bugs will spring up. And fixing one bug will create new bugs that will create new bugs fixing those. It is a long process. The biggest exclusion is Mac is they are built mostly the same, but still changes and other programs conflicting could be a (minor) problem.

3: Customers are now demanding everything as soon as possible. And in the PC would, they have the ability to patch any problems so they can keep up with the demand. It just takes time. Time is needed to go through all the red tape of releasing something, working a set hours so OT is not being used. Do whatever other projects are needed to be done. They have 40 hours a week to do everything and it takes time to really and fully code everything correctly. Flaming someone from the site for taking time out of his life to answer a few questions does NOT help anyone and only hurts EVERYONE.

Maybe a few of the people voicing the loudest about the problems need to step back and look at the big picture and see on the realm of importance a patch to a video game is in the grand scheme of life.

Dagta
Oct 16, 2007, 12:46 PM
There were maybe 10 loudmouths persistently posting in that thread. It is extremely unprofessional for company representatives to alter their public behavior based on such a tiny sample. Unlike the average poster, this is their full time job, they ought to be above such petty nonsense.


I wish I could agree with you, but his statement was merely an exaggerated version of the truth. I have worked in software development, and I know firsthand that some bugs are inevitable in any complex system. However, the kind of bugs that would be obvious to almost anybody during normal use of the software are not inevitable, and point to the fact that Firaxis has a completely broken QA/release process. I'm not pointing fingers at any individuals, but it is sadly obvious that 3.13 testing was far from adequate. And let's not even get started on 3.03 - "built from a wrong branch"??? Such a thing would not be even remotely possible at any software development shop that wasn't completely screwed up.

Agreed. I've been programming since 1995 and it seems obvious to me that there was very little testing done on the last version of the patch. 20 minutes might not be far off the truth.

Smidlee
Oct 16, 2007, 04:09 PM
Actually, Soren (who was lead before BTS) left Firaxis totally to work on Spore.
This statement says a lot.

Wodan
Oct 16, 2007, 04:54 PM
This statement says a lot.
Come on, there's no idea why he left. Maybe they simply offered him a big salary increase.

Wodan

Smidlee
Oct 16, 2007, 05:09 PM
Come on, there's no idea why he left. Maybe they simply offered him a big salary increase.

Wodan For what ever the reason the captain jump ship.

Antilogic
Oct 16, 2007, 05:37 PM
Ha! Don't get me started on Master of Orion 3!

At least this time I've got source code to work with.

Bh

Are you the genius who put out that patching program for MoO3? If so, I owe you a long overdue "thank you" for making that game playable! I enjoyed it for awhile after all the fixes...

All right, I really don't have anything on topic to contribute. As far as I'm concerned, the game is quite playable in the current form, and if patches take another week to be released, I'm fine with it. I'm so busy now I don't get a lot of Civ time anyway. If that culture-not-showing-up-in-the-build-list bug is really annoying you that much...look in the Civilopedia or download the unofficial fix. It's a minor issue, and I'm more than pleased they produced the game and the expansions, as much as I disagree with some of the content they included. I'll mod it. End of story.

Duuk
Oct 16, 2007, 09:22 PM
Personally, I think if people would read (for example) the title of this thread, they'd understand that "we the whiners" aren't asking for the patch RIGHT NOW. We're asking for Firaxi$ to say "we're going to patch it. no really". Then we'd sit and be happy for a month.

And if they'd pop on every monday morning and say "not done yet but still working on it" we'd be content for a while.

It's the deafening silence, suggesting that BtS is "done" and Civ:Rev is the only project of the future, that is alarming.

I won't be purchasing anything from Sid Meier again. Pirates, Railroads, and Civ4 have shaken my faith.

ezwip
Oct 16, 2007, 09:33 PM
I love BTS it is my favorite game right now. I have not played anything else since purchasing it. The AI is great and I've had alot of fun playing this game. It will never be complete to everyone's satisfaction. They gave us the ability to mod the game so if you hate something all is not lost. I do not play online but perhaps if I did I'd be on the side of those complaining about bugs. I have been playing 3.03 with Solvers patch and I'm quite content. I have faith that Firaxis will eventually release another patch to calm you guys down. Give them a little bit of time there are companies like "EA games" that would never address any of your concerns. They'd just charge you another 50 bucks with a promise of solving the problem, and lie to you. Firaxis FTW! :goodjob:

TheWilltoAct
Oct 16, 2007, 10:27 PM
There were maybe 10 loudmouths persistently posting in that thread. It is extremely unprofessional for company representatives to alter their public behavior based on such a tiny sample. Unlike the average poster, this is their full time job, they ought to be above such petty nonsense...


...And let's not even get started on 3.03 - "built from a wrong branch"??? Such a thing would not be even remotely possible at any software development shop that wasn't completely screwed up.

To the first part: I agree 100%

To the second part: ROFL :lol:

Bhruic
Oct 16, 2007, 11:57 PM
There were maybe 10 loudmouths persistently posting in that thread. It is extremely unprofessional for company representatives to alter their public behavior based on such a tiny sample. Unlike the average poster, this is their full time job, they ought to be above such petty nonsense.

The company hasn't altered their public behaviour. But individuals within that company have.

Such a thing would not be even remotely possible at any software development shop that wasn't completely screwed up.

Making such absolute statements without being aware of the reality of the situation really doesn't mean much. There are many times when an outsider's perspective just can't encompass the internal situation. That doesn't stop speculation, of course, but it'd be nice if it stopped these sort of grandiose statements.

Bh

Stilgar08
Oct 17, 2007, 01:21 AM
Personally, I think if people would read (for example) the title of this thread, they'd understand that "we the whiners" aren't asking for the patch RIGHT NOW. We're asking for Firaxi$ to say "we're going to patch it. no really". Then we'd sit and be happy for a month.

And if they'd pop on every monday morning and say "not done yet but still working on it" we'd be content for a while.

no offence, duuk, but that's just plain wrong. Before Alexman posted the changelog of 3.13. there were continuous requests and complaints and "whinings" from a wide variety of users: When will it come out??? :aargh: I remember ongoing debates about when this will stop and that HRE or Poland-threads were missed! ;)

After Alexman's post we all know what happened.. If I would be working at Firaxis I wouldn't bother posting to open myself for accusations and attacks anymore and would prefer working on improvements (updates/patches) and get the satisfaction of positively surprising the civvers when releasing a new patch... :p

gps
Oct 17, 2007, 01:46 AM
If I would be working at Firaxis I wouldn't bother posting to open myself for accusations and attacks anymore and would prefer working on improvements (updates/patches) and get the satisfaction of positively surprising the civvers when releasing a new patch... :p

No problem if they do. But are they?
There hasn't been another PtW-patch after the release of Civ III Gold.
There hasn't been another Conquest-patch after the release of Civ III Complete.
And last week Civ IV Complete hit the shelves!

Naismith
Oct 17, 2007, 02:17 AM
My suggestion: Wait before buying a new game, expansion or patch. Review the complaints and issues. For BTS, I didn't even buy it until 3.02 and Solver's patch were available. I never installed 3.03. I didn't install 3.13 until Bruic's patch was out for almost a week.

For those of you who can't wait, resign yourself to being out there on the bleeding edge. It sucks, but that's the reality of software products these days.

Stilgar08
Oct 17, 2007, 04:32 AM
Comparing Firaxis with other developers I find they're supporting their products quite long after the release... :run: Don't hit me for that, but I honestly have the feeling you can count on them to patch until major gamebreakers are gone... (Played CIV I-IV and Pirates).Concerning Conquests I haven't encountered MAJOR gamebreakers after the last patch but maybe I'm not a too in-depth player for that.

I'm pretty sure they'll at least fix the problems that have been made for MP with 3.13. (I usually don't play MP, so I cannot say anything about that...) - I'm trusting them far enough for that.

Mistakes have undoubtely been done but compared to other games I recently bought the Firaxis-support and connection with the fan-base is pretty good.

Medieval TWII for instance was/is a nightmare updating and the latest patch had about 600MB!!! :eek: (no flatrate here...)

EA has been mentioned few times already and Activision is one of the companies where I refuse to buy a game from anymore... I made a lot of bad experiences with games not finished (enough) from shelf but CIV hasn't been one of them...

P.S. @Naismith: Could that be "Admiral Naismith"? McMaster Bujould? ;) Great novels!

Naismith
Oct 17, 2007, 12:10 PM
P.S. @Naismith: Could that be "Admiral Naismith"? McMaster Bujould? ;) Great novels!

Yes, the little Admiral - I don't really have his flair for strategy or tactics, though. Bujold is probably my favorite author.

warpstorm
Oct 17, 2007, 05:30 PM
Agreed. I've been programming since 1995 and it seems obvious to me that there was very little testing done on the last version of the patch. 20 minutes might not be far off the truth.

Well, I've been a professional programmer since 1984, and it's obvious to me that hundreds of hours of testing went into the patch.

Throwing about the number of years you've been a programmer (which in my case is actually true), carries little weight in an argument. It's about as meaningful as saying that since I ate lunch at the same restaurant as Sid (true fact) or that I am in the credits for Civ (true fact) or that the fact that I have a high post count (yet another true fact) makes me an authority on how much testing Firaxis did. It is meaningless.

T.A JONES
Oct 17, 2007, 08:41 PM
Well, I've been a professional programmer since 1984, and it's obvious to me that hundreds of hours of testing went into the patch.

Throwing about the number of years you've been a programmer (which in my case is actually true), carries little weight in an argument. It's about as meaningful as saying that since I ate lunch at the same restaurant as Sid (true fact) or that I am in the credits for Civ (true fact) or that the fact that I have a high post count (yet another true fact) makes me an authority on how much testing Firaxis did. It is meaningless.

NO offence but throwin around your close relation to fireaxis makes it look like your coverin for em...true fact ;)

The masses say theres no testin then thats that truth. Oh well the same masses will take what they make and they will like it. Or they put up with it and buy the next offering . So in the end whats the point on complaing.

WHy should Fireaxix change their ways when their income statment tells em where all suckers. (no losses in research and testing dept yet high return in sales,,oh and the best moddin moddin team in the world to fix their mistakes for em)
Come on wake up, they expect all you to pick up the slack.

Methos
Oct 17, 2007, 09:48 PM
The masses say theres no testin then thats that truth.

Oh really? By your statement if the masses claim someone is guilty of a crime than they are guilty, even if the evidence states otherwise. Truth and fact are not derived from the masses opinion.

jpinard
Oct 18, 2007, 01:24 AM
I think a lot of the concern really has to be the fear the Civ IV staff has been dramatically cut back. It freaks people out there are so many loose ends that need to be tied up. No doubt, there's a ton of great stuff in BtS and I love it. But I am equally frustrated by some of the things that are messed up and some outstanding issues that are a bit sloppy (much fewer of course thanks to Bhruic).

One thing that bothers me about Firaxis right now? Look at Sid Meier's Railroads. There are still terrible design issues that broke the game for many people - and never got fixed. The game has no support from Firaxis, and the mod community is nearly non-existant. Ironic since it was built off the exact same Civ IV based engine (Gamebryo) so the potential is there. And can you believe it was only released a year ago? The community was pretty much neutered in just 6 months. So there is very good reason for people to be afraid we'll be abandoned. Railroads is the prime example.

Some interesting trivia:

At the end of the Civ Revolutions movie Sid says, "This is the game I always wanted to make". Sid said the exact same thing about Railroads.

gps
Oct 18, 2007, 03:39 AM
Railroads is the prime example.


Hmmm, for me C3C/Conquests is the prime example: the immediate predecessor of the game we're talking about right now. Second expansion is out and still has several bugs left, that somehow don't want to dissappear even after a handfull of patches, while everybody at Firaxis allready has it's mind focused on the next Civ-Project - and suddenly the company closes it's shutters and it's silence ever after. Does that sound vaguely familiar to anyone??? ;)

gunter
Oct 18, 2007, 05:36 AM
I played a lot the first original masterpiece called Railroad Tycoon,it was 1990....then I skipped intermediate versions due to several reasons and I finally bought Sid Meier Railroads! more or less an year ago.....

Sid has been a real Genius and for the youngsters here his masterpieces list http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sid_Meier can witness his first games were deeply full of geniality ..... later on maybe he became rich and famous and maybe losse some adrenaline....maybe it's a common human behaviour....but you are not human,believe me ! :)

All this speeches.....to say that he always stated that he made games that himself would have loved to play....excellent concept and excellent mind but now Sid we wanna talk with you directly,you surelly will be the most wellcome guy ever seen in a forum. By myside I would only to thank you for what you have done in these last 20-25 years. I do not want to complain about Civ IV.

If you wanna appear with a camuflated nick ....maybe..... are you already here ? ;)

gps
Oct 18, 2007, 06:00 AM
I played a lot the first original masterpiece called Railroad Tycoon,it was 1990....

Sid has been a real Genius.


True, 50% of all the games I played in the late eighties/early nineties were Sid's: Silent Service, Gunship, F15, F19, Red Storm Rising. Don't forget, he had a whole career in military sims - BEFORE he ever started working in the strategy genre.

later on maybe he became rich and famous and maybe losse some adrenaline....


I don't think that's the problem. I just think in those days, games were a much less complex matter, some of these games were coded by Sid alone - and having the whole code and the whole logic in the hand of one man sure makes bugs less likely than today with hundreds of people working on one game. And if you have a look at the making of Civ IV video provided with the Civ Cronicles, one starts to wonder, how much input - except for the name - Sid actually had.

... now Sid we wanna talk with you directly,you surelly will be the most wellcome guy ever seen in a forum.


:goodjob:
Tha would be something... ;)

I do not want to complain about Civ IV.


Me either, it surely is one of the greatest games I've ever played. If I did not care, there'd be no need for me to be a little bit worried, the game may stay unfinished.

classical_hero
Oct 18, 2007, 06:03 AM
My suggestion: Wait before buying a new game, expansion or patch. Review the complaints and issues. For BTS, I didn't even buy it until 3.02 and Solver's patch were available. I never installed 3.03. I didn't install 3.13 until Bruic's patch was out for almost a week.

For those of you who can't wait, resign yourself to being out there on the bleeding edge. It sucks, but that's the reality of software products these days.

There are some of us who use BTS for Mutliplayer and generally you have to go with what you host is doing and every single one of them that I am playing in went to 3.13, so there was no option for but to patch.

r_rolo1
Oct 18, 2007, 06:33 AM
^^ And there are those people that purchased their BtS on Steam ( or some other e-commerce thing ) and that had their BtS auto pached and unable to go back to 3.0X....

And BtS 3.13 has some serious SP issues ( unlike some suggested ) : the colony issue ( you can't have more than one colony... if you make a second the first auto declare war ( WTF ? ) ) , the way that they handled the max 18 civs problem when creating colonies ( if there is a dead civ, the colony takes his place... the problem is that the colony inherits the culture from the dead civ and you suddently have cities with 95% of your colony culture and with the " we yearn to .... " :mad: ( why they didn't installed a 34 civ dll ? :confused: ) ) , the fact that privateers can have safe harbor in the victim's cities.... just to name a few. Not so bad as the MP issues, but clearly broken issues that unbalance the game seriously.

The big problem is that a lot of people ( me included ) is with fear ( based on other games of the same house fate, like CivIII ) that Firaxis had simply abandoned BTS as a ghost ship and that no more patches will come. That would not be the end of the world if Firaxis officially said that the shop was closed ( almost all of the people would adopt some kind of unofficial patch and life would go on ), a thing that most likely will not happen for marketing issues ( who would buy a game that the manufacturer said that was on the shelf?... ).

@gunter

Most of us ( if not all ) feel the same about Sid... if it still was Sid that was making the games.... ;)

P.S alexman is again in here... good news ;)

Dagta
Oct 18, 2007, 07:37 AM
Well, I've been a professional programmer since 1984, and it's obvious to me that hundreds of hours of testing went into the patch.

Throwing about the number of years you've been a programmer (which in my case is actually true), carries little weight in an argument. It's about as meaningful as saying that since I ate lunch at the same restaurant as Sid (true fact) or that I am in the credits for Civ (true fact) or that the fact that I have a high post count (yet another true fact) makes me an authority on how much testing Firaxis did. It is meaningless.

Perhaps total hundreds of hours went into testing but how much of that was on the final release candidate of patch 3.13? No caught something as obvious as the cultural icon bug? I saw that within five minutes of loading my first game after the patch.

23 years of programming and you think hundreds of hours of testing went into this patch.... was there a beta test with 100 people?

Perfxion
Oct 18, 2007, 07:47 AM
Are people still forgetting that PC software is hard to test for everything since there are about 1.75 trillion different hardware configurations out there. So the bugs might not be present on the machines they work with. And the beta testers that uses can only change so much with testing. It would take like 10 million dollars and 6 years to test a game on every possible hardware configuration out there.

Dagta
Oct 18, 2007, 07:50 AM
Are people still forgetting that PC software is hard to test for everything since there are about 1.75 trillion different hardware configurations out there. So the bugs might not be present on the machines they work with. And the beta testers that uses can only change so much with testing. It would take like 10 million dollars and 6 years to test a game on every possible hardware configuration out there.


To test if a program core and graphics are compatible you need several configurations. Bugs like the culture icon bug, the colony founding bug, and resource trading bug are machine independent. They are logical bugs in the game's programming and will show up regardless of machine configuration.

Perfxion
Oct 18, 2007, 10:36 AM
I played the game many times with the latest patch and have not seen any of these problems. So it has to be hardware dependent.

King Flevance
Oct 18, 2007, 10:44 AM
No it isn't. Its coding. Those two statements are fact. You are either:

1) not playing 3.13
2) using Bhruic's patch
3) never noticed.

Smidlee
Oct 18, 2007, 03:21 PM
Perhaps total hundreds of hours went into testing but how much of that was on the final release candidate of patch 3.13? No caught something as obvious as the cultural icon bug? I saw that within five minutes of loading my first game after the patch.

How many bugs were spotted before you got the patch? I can see someone play the game for hours and miss this bug. (The more people play the game increases the changes of spotting bugs.) I bet you didn't catch ever bug on Bhruic's patch in five minute yet ever one of those were there at the time.
Personally I didn't notice this bug until it was reported here.

toft
Oct 18, 2007, 03:30 PM
How many bugs were spotted before you got the patch? I can see someone play the game for hours and miss this bug. (The more people play the game increases the changes of spotting bugs.) I bet you didn't catch ever bug on Bhruic's patch in five minute yet ever one of those were there at the time.

This is why frequent small patches would be nice. Firaxis would get a fast feedback to the changes they made, and we would get a better feeling of satisfaction with our product. Its a win-win situation.

Anyway... that "Check for updates" button in Civ4 is pretty useless when theres only ~2 patches per game/expansion.

Vanadium
Oct 18, 2007, 04:38 PM
i only play MP with some freinds we usually play a game at least once a week.

the MP sync issues have just bricked the game for us since it happens on every turn for us...

can they not release a small patch to fix that? cause seriously that IS a large problem.


ive never complained before about any patches for xpacs or fixes ...but that last patch just made the game literally unplayable for me and my freinds.

please fix soon.

ori
Oct 18, 2007, 04:42 PM
i only play MP with some freinds we usually play a game at least once a week.

the MP sync issues have just bricked the game for us since it happens on every turn for us...

can they not release a small patch to fix that? cause seriously that IS a large problem.


ive never complained before about any patches for xpacs or fixes ...but that last patch just made the game literally unplayable for me and my freinds.

please fix soon.
Have you tried the fix proposed here (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=6041031&postcount=80)?

Vanadium
Oct 18, 2007, 04:47 PM
Have you tried the fix proposed here (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=6041031&postcount=80)?

no i didnt, thanks. tomorrow night i guess the 3 of us will have to do that and hope for the best :)

jpinard
Oct 18, 2007, 04:57 PM
There is one issue to think about... and that's how the Civ development team feels about modders.

For those that mod the game, every time a patch comes out it could be a major undertaking to update their mod to fit the new code. As anxious as I was for the last patch, I was also painfully aware of all the editing and re-testing I'd have to do of my own work.

That being said, if they chose the "bigger patch - longer time" vs.
"smaller patch shorter time" because of a the extra work it causes modders... they should communicate that to players.
It's really really hard to find balance, and I've been on all sides of the gaming world.

I'm just really thankful Soren and the team took the route they initially did so we don't always have to wait for the dev's (mod-wise) and we have talented people who can help us enjoy our gaming while Firaxis tries to catch up.

warpstorm
Oct 18, 2007, 06:36 PM
Perhaps total hundreds of hours went into testing but how much of that was on the final release candidate of patch 3.13?

I have no way of knowing; I turned down the offer to beta-test BTS and its patches.

23 years of programming and you think hundreds of hours of testing went into this patch.... was there a beta test with 100 people?

There were on all of the previous patches to Civ3 and Civ4. By extrapolation, I would assume that they kept a large core set of beta testers as well as some T2K professional QA. (Firaxis recruits its testers from posters here and at Apolyton.)

The other thing to consider is that maybe the testers are not at fault and they dutifully wrote up bug reports on these problems. They might have been deemed "known shippable" by Firaxis (or more likely the upper management at T2K) so as to not delay the patch any more (or spend any more money it).

Dagta
Oct 18, 2007, 11:58 PM
I have no way of knowing; I turned down the offer to beta-test BTS and its patches.



There were on all of the previous patches to Civ3 and Civ4. By extrapolation, I would assume that they kept a large core set of beta testers as well as some T2K professional QA. (Firaxis recruits its testers from posters here and at Apolyton.)

The other thing to consider is that maybe the testers are not at fault and they dutifully wrote up bug reports on these problems. They might have been deemed "known shippable" by Firaxis (or more likely the upper management at T2K) so as to not delay the patch any more (or spend any more money it).

Thanks for the explanation. I didn't know about the beta testers.

Whatever happened, I do feel this patch wasn't ready for release.

Snazzye
Oct 19, 2007, 03:42 AM
Consoles require much more exhaustive testing precisely because you can't patch it.

The reason to go to consoles is that the programming and testing is all easier and standard because you have one fixed, stable platform, instead of a different hardware setup on every single customer (which is what the PC version has to deal with).

Wodan
You can patch consoles. Thats what Xbox live is for. Look at EA with Madden 07. That game was buggy until they released a patch over live months later kinda like, erm..........

TheWilltoAct
Oct 19, 2007, 03:54 AM
I don't know how you can not notice the culture icon bug...... :scan:

Loopy
Oct 19, 2007, 04:14 AM
I'm not sure why the OP labeled their silence as "alarming". When was the last time Firaxis/Take2/2KGames ever been forthcoming and responsive about when a patch was going to be released? All it would take would be a three words on their webpage saying "patch in progress" and that would be tons better than their total lack of communication. I'd say that the silence is just a continuation of the status quo, and not particularly alarming.

Some may point at the response Alexman got as a reason for the silence. That might be valid if, 1) Firaxis/Take2 had been communicating with us beforehand, 2) he were acting in a official capacity in keeping us informed, and 3) he actually received some serious flaming for his words.

To address those points:
1) AFAIK, their communications have been only of an extremely informal nature, done once in a blue moon, of random Firaxians posting on random topics or asking for our help in providing save games. A loss for sure, but how big of a loss?

2) All indications were that he was acting of his own initiative. While he personally might not want to repeat his actions, one could easily argue that the lesson learned by Firaxis/Take2 shouldn't be that they ought to keep quiet about everything, but rather that they ought to have a designated liason. Some of the best CS comes with a mantra of "it's not my fault, but it is my problem." That kind of thinking actually gets things fixed. When the philosophy is "it's not my fault, so someone else can deal with it", too often that "someone else" is "no one else".

3) I'd hardly call what he received a serious flaming. There was clearly tons of support for Firaxis early on. As implied "deadlines" came and went and the weeks passed, while there was criticism for his lack of communication there was still just as much support. And I don't remember a ton of actual moderator action coming up in response to what anyone said about Alexman. On a per page basis, it wouldn't surprise me if there were more in this thread. And the more cynical might even wonder if he never came back to read it, if he could even be affected by the "flames". Sort of a "tree falls in the woods" question, no?

Thoughts?

warpstorm
Oct 19, 2007, 05:51 AM
You can patch consoles. Thats what Xbox live is for.

You can but there are caveats. Microsoft charges you big money for each patch (which is one reason why console games do not get patched over Live often). In addition, they (MS) have strict limits on what you can do in a patch. In particular they have very strict rules on the size of the patch. This means that you can usually only get your executable to change, but not your game assets.

Wodan
Oct 19, 2007, 09:12 AM
This is why frequent small patches would be nice. Firaxis would get a fast feedback to the changes they made, and we would get a better feeling of satisfaction with our product. Its a win-win situation.
That kind of logic is why there are stories of the U.S. government paying $5000 for a single wrench.

Basically, what this ignores is the fixed overhead of the project. The project can be releasing a CIV patch or getting something to tighten bolts, or anything else really. Then you have to define the project, set up the team, set up the procurement process and budget, get the accounting all lined up, organize the project management, pay the suppliers, pay the staff, set up testing, etc.

Depending on the volume (e.g., 50 patches with 1 fix vs 1 patch with 50 fixes, or getting 1 wrench vs 10,000 wrenches), the overhead changes only slightly if at all. What is then necessary is to amortize the overhead costs over the quantity, to estimate the cost of the project.

In addition to all this, they will have a cost-per-item (cost of materials, labor, etc, per volume).

So, for a patch, if the overhead cost to Take2/Firaxis is $100,000, and the cost per fix is average $1,000, then we have the following numbers:
To fix 50 bugs by issuing 5 patches with only 10 fixes each, it costs $550,000.
To fix 50 bugs by issuing 1 patch with 50 fixes all at the same time, it costs $150,000.

See what I mean?

Wodan

DagHammarskjol
Oct 19, 2007, 09:31 AM
Could someone summarize, or point to a summary, of the major issues that remain with the latest patch?

Thanks

-DaHa

Wodan
Oct 19, 2007, 09:39 AM
Could someone summarize, or point to a summary, of the major issues that remain with the latest patch?

Thanks

-DaHa
Just look at the Unofficial Patch (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?t=246057) change list.

Wodan

jray
Oct 19, 2007, 10:01 AM
Could someone summarize, or point to a summary, of the major issues that remain with the latest patch?

Thanks

-DaHa

Here are the ones I know about:
For installations in a non-default location, the patch installs some of the files in the default location anyway due to hard-coded paths, resulting in a non-functioning game
The game version in the "About This Build" screen is incorrectly updated, usually still showing as the version it was patched from
The player cache is improperly updated, resulting in constant OOS errors in multiplayer
The patch overwrites the Vanilla and Warlords DLL's, causing OOS errors in multiplayer versions of Vanilla 1.74 and Warlords 2.13 when some people have BTS 3.13 installed and others don't
Culture/espionage does not display for building popups
Spies are ejected from a square with other units when declaring war
AI tries to trade for resources it already has, with no regard for whether they are valuable for corporations, other trades, etc. (appears as grossly uneven trades)
Promotions are handled incorrectly when a Warlord is attached to units belonging to a selection group
New Colonies can overwrite previously existing Civs, incorrectly inheriting their culture, war declarations, etc.
New Colony message is displayed even if player hasn't met Master Civ
Workers on Transports can capture cities, resulting in displacement of other units in the city and sometimes a chain reaction of other enemy cities being automatically "captured" on the same turn without any battles
Units considered "unsuitable" for city defense do not heal when in cities, even if they do not move
An unlimited number of air units can be based in vassal's cities
Corporation founding does not work under Mercantilism
Vassal's spies can be "caught" in your territory, even though they provide no threat
City plot selection does not take into account the amount of time worked for cottage/hamlet/village, resulting in poor choices by governor
The Vassal of a Capitulating Civ is not freed before peace treaty, resulting in incorrect war/peace status and other problems
Mouse-over for Worker actively working a plot counts Worker twice, resulting in incorrect turn counts
Automated Workers sometimes idle when railroading is possible
Mouse-over for Join City lacks extra bonuses for Great People
Vassals freed by Capitulating Master incorrectly refuse to talk
Moving a Privateer from a city to rival territory causes a war declaration
Automated Workers idle in cities within 2 squares of a hostile border
AI ridiculously spams excess Executives, completely ignoring defense of citiesFYI, Bhruic's Unofficial BTS 3.13 patch (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?t=246057) seems to correct all but the OOS problems, and those are usually corrected by deleting the player cache and re-installing the patch.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 19, 2007, 12:11 PM
ugh Wodan :p

I think the procedures, infrastructure, and financing for making patches can be set up permanently throughout a multiple patch phase. If Firaxis is phasing multiple bugs then they can release a small patch that solves some of these bugs, and then another to solve some more, etc. It is illogical for them to disband their whole patching group and reassemble it each time they have to make a new patch.

Perhaps you are assuming that when they are putting together separate small patches they think they are solving everything and then they disband and reassemble if some new bug comes up...?

r_rolo1
Oct 19, 2007, 12:11 PM
@jray

One more:
- First colony auto-declares war if you make a second one

Wodan
Oct 19, 2007, 12:46 PM
I think the procedures, infrastructure, and financing for making patches can be set up permanently throughout a multiple patch phase.
Some can, surely. Some can't. So the principle remains.

If Firaxis is phasing multiple bugs then they can release a small patch that solves some of these bugs, and then another to solve some more, etc. It is illogical for them to disband their whole patching group and reassemble it each time they have to make a new patch.
What do they do interim? What's illogical is to pay them to sit around waiting for the customer base to find new bugs.

In any event, again, that's only part of the overhead costs. There's quite a bit that can't be combined no matter what you do, and are incurred each time you do a release.

Anyway, I wasn't meaning to have a protracted debate, just to simply point out that it's more expensive that way.

Wodan

Naismith
Oct 19, 2007, 02:13 PM
Some can, surely. Some can't. So the principle remains.


What do they do interim? What's illogical is to pay them to sit around waiting for the customer base to find new bugs.

In any event, again, that's only part of the overhead costs. There's quite a bit that can't be combined no matter what you do, and are incurred each time you do a release.

Anyway, I wasn't meaning to have a protracted debate, just to simply point out that it's more expensive that way.

Wodan

The biggest problem is QA. In theory, every time any code change is made, a complete QA of the entire product on every configuration is required. Of course, this theory is routinely ignored in the software industry, because of the prohibitive costs in time and money. But that in turn causes buggy releases.

Most companies try to take a middle road by batching as many fixes as possible in bug fix releases, by constructing a quick (sometimes automated) "smoke test" to flush out obvious bugs, which gets run after any bug fix, no matter how small. They can never wait until all the coding is done before starting QA. That usually means many of the bug fixes occur after QA has started, and they aren't always tested as much as they should be.

I'm fairly sure the main thing Firaxis wants to avoid is putting out an emergency patch without enough QA, one that creates an even bigger problem than the bug(s) it's supposed to fix. Then they get roasted by the user community, and as a bonus they have to immediately release an emergency patch for the emergency patch. It also tends to mess up your scheduling on other development projects, as your staff yo-yos from one emergency to the other.

Just my opinion, but I've been through a good bit of this myself. :)

toft
Oct 19, 2007, 04:12 PM
That kind of logic is why there are stories of the U.S. government paying $5000 for a single wrench.

Basically, what this ignores is the fixed overhead of the project. The project can be releasing a CIV patch or getting something to tighten bolts, or anything else really. Then you have to define the project, set up the team, set up the procurement process and budget, get the accounting all lined up, organize the project management, pay the suppliers, pay the staff, set up testing, etc.

Depending on the volume (e.g., 50 patches with 1 fix vs 1 patch with 50 fixes, or getting 1 wrench vs 10,000 wrenches), the overhead changes only slightly if at all. What is then necessary is to amortize the overhead costs over the quantity, to estimate the cost of the project.

In addition to all this, they will have a cost-per-item (cost of materials, labor, etc, per volume).

So, for a patch, if the overhead cost to Take2/Firaxis is $100,000, and the cost per fix is average $1,000, then we have the following numbers:
To fix 50 bugs by issuing 5 patches with only 10 fixes each, it costs $550,000.
To fix 50 bugs by issuing 1 patch with 50 fixes all at the same time, it costs $150,000.

See what I mean?

Wodan

I see what you mean, but the situation you are creating cant be compared to a videogame. Video games have a rather short lifetime, and should be patched very often.

If you were aboard a ship that was sinking, and you could fix it before it sank - wouldnt you do just that? Or would you stop and think about the costs? I think that the customers goodwill towards firaxis is more worth than a few more work hours.

I feel im aboard the Titanic heading towards something big...

Lance of Llanwy
Oct 19, 2007, 05:28 PM
I see what you mean, but the situation you are creating cant be compared to a videogame. Video games have a rather short lifetime, and should be patched very often.

If you were aboard a ship that was sinking, and you could fix it before it sank - wouldnt you do just that? Or would you stop and think about the costs? I think that the customers goodwill towards firaxis is more worth than a few more work hours.

I feel im aboard the Titanic heading towards something big...
Sorry, I don't think a buggy patch is very dire at all. It is more analogous to my floor: the longer I wait to swifter it, the more there will be to swifter. It will take me a longer time to swifter than if I did so more often, but, conversely I also swifter less often. Accumulating dirt and other crap on my floor is merely an annoyance: I am not going to die from my neglect. My chick friends might not be too enamored with it, but, ultimately, it is my floor and I clean as I wish to, and they cannot change that short of cleaning it themselves, which is something they understandably don't care to do. You'll survive. Firaxis will release another patch at some point, but it's going to be released when it's released and nothing you say or do is going to change that

Wodan
Oct 20, 2007, 07:51 AM
I see what you mean, but the situation you are creating cant be compared to a videogame. Video games have a rather short lifetime, and should be patched very often. I think that the customers goodwill towards firaxis is more worth than a few more work hours.
Sure, but that's an intangible that can't really be assigned a value. Yet, if customer service had no effect, they wouldn't bother to patch in the first place.

Ultimately there needs to be a balance between cost and customer service. Issuing patches too frequently is unrealistic. ("Frequently" could be determined several ways and is subjective.) Issuing patches too seldom results in demonstrable negative impact upon some percentage of the customers (as we have seen).

Probably every single person will have their own "sweet spot" of how frequently they would want official patches. Still, I think probably everybody on CFC would say they would like them more frequently than has been happening.

Nevertheless, if we're going to ask Take2/Firaxis for better customer service, my two cents is that we should make a reasonable request. If we make an unreasonable request (or even a request that is perceived to be unreasonable), then they are going to dismiss it out of hand.

Personally, I would think that they would consider a request such as "patch frequently" to be unreasonable. Frequent is not a word that a business would want to hear applied to a task that requires spending money.

However, a request such as "patch twice as often as you have been" is reasonable, can be easily assigned a cost, is measurable, and scales itself with the severity and number of bugs. It also would have a big PR benefit. They could say "you asked for something, we listened, it was reasonable, and here it is. enjoy."

Wodan

King Flevance
Oct 20, 2007, 08:50 AM
However, a request such as "patch twice as often as you have been" is reasonable, can be easily assigned a cost, is measurable, and scales itself with the severity and number of bugs. It also would have a big PR benefit. They could say "you asked for something, we listened, it was reasonable, and here it is. enjoy."

I would crap in my pants if I ever saw 2k say this.

Wodan
Oct 20, 2007, 10:42 AM
:lol: :agree:

Wodan

Duuk
Oct 21, 2007, 01:50 PM
So it appears that Firaxis is leaving BtS as-is. Anyone shocked?

toft
Oct 21, 2007, 02:04 PM
So it appears that Firaxis is leaving BtS as-is. Anyone shocked?

There is still time... but I'm not buying any new firaxis products in the future - not at release day anyway :(

Methos
Oct 21, 2007, 02:17 PM
There is still time... but I'm not buying any new firaxis products in the future - not at release day anyway :(

Why? Let me ask you this and anyone else who feels the same way. Did you have fun playing BTS, even with the bugs? During all the time you played, was there not times where you enjoyed yourself?

Even with the bugs I'm still glad I bought it the day it came out, but that's just my opinion.

TheWilltoAct
Oct 21, 2007, 02:24 PM
Yeah, I like it so much I'd probably buy the next iteration the day it came out :)

ori
Oct 21, 2007, 02:27 PM
Why? Let me ask you this and anyone else who feels the same way. Did you have fun playing BTS, even with the bugs? During all the time you played, was there not times where you enjoyed yourself?

Even with the bugs I'm still glad I bought it the day it came out, but that's just my opinion.
I agree that BtS is fun - IF you get it to run. This is my main :gripe: this patch broke MP for a lot of people (and yes I know in most cases there are fixes but you'll only know this if you come here and not if you ask their Tech Support) and kills the game altogether for people who did not install the game in the default directory. Leaving those people who bought a game which is being broken by this patch out in the cold would be a disappointing move by Firaxis/Take2.
The weird thing about this is: I enjoy Civilization in all its incarnations since way back and would probably buy Civ5 upon its release just for nostalgia - buying other stuff from this company though would be difficult for me to say the least. I am glad I don't play console games though so it will be a few years until I have that choice to make ;)

gps
Oct 21, 2007, 02:44 PM
Why? Let me ask you this and anyone else who feels the same way. Did you have fun playing BTS, even with the bugs? During all the time you played, was there not times where you enjoyed yourself?

Even with the bugs I'm still glad I bought it the day it came out, but that's just my opinion.

To be honest, I never really started playing BtS. I play Vanialla and Warlords and Civ 3 PtW while BtS is lying on the shelf waiting for Firaxis to finish it properly. I don't play unfinished games. And if a company developes the nasty habit of never finishing the majority of it's games, I stop buying them. I was a big fan of EA's Need for Speed Series, bought all titels until Most Wanted, which they refused to patch properly. Although it wont kill them loosing one silly customer like me - it wont kill me either not wasting my time on their *** games any more. I am also a Civ Player of the very first hour, even Civ I DOS is still installed an the PC I am typing right now. I can remeber times, when a PC-game or a DVD-Player or a Satellite-Receiver or whatever was working properly out of the box, without having to be software-updated ten times first. It maybe naive, but that's what I expect for my hard earned cash: quality. A working product. That's not what we got with Civ 3 Conquest and that's not what we have right now with BtS. And that's what we should try to remind Firaxis of now and then in a friendly way. No insults as some do here as that's not very civilized - but we also should stop defending them! Don't give them the impression, it's OK for us that they simply abandon their games and let guys like Buhric do the hard work.

jpinard
Oct 21, 2007, 02:51 PM
So it appears that Firaxis is leaving BtS as-is. Anyone shocked?

Why would you say that? Was there some official press release?

theKurgen
Oct 21, 2007, 03:06 PM
To be honest, I never really started playing BtS. I play Vanialla and Warlords and Civ 3 PtW while BtS is lying on the shelf waiting for Firaxis to finish it properly. I don't play unfinished games.

You should, despite the bugs it's a FAR superior game to any of those. The thought of going back to Warlords now just makes me cringe.

Duuk
Oct 21, 2007, 03:48 PM
Why would you say that? Was there some official press release?

Not even a whisper of one... 20 days after the patch was released. Not a word, not a HINT that there will be another patch. Not even an acknowledgment that bug reports are being received or that Firaxis has any desire to finish their patch.

toft
Oct 21, 2007, 03:56 PM
Not even a whisper of one... 20 days after the patch was released. Not a word, not a HINT that there will be another patch. Not even an acknowledgment that bug reports are being received or that Firaxis has any desire to finish their patch.

Thats hardly different from all the other "in-between-patch" moments...

toft
Oct 21, 2007, 04:10 PM
Why? Let me ask you this and anyone else who feels the same way. Did you have fun playing BTS, even with the bugs? During all the time you played, was there not times where you enjoyed yourself?

Even with the bugs I'm still glad I bought it the day it came out, but that's just my opinion.

Well... From day 1, I had to edit xml files to remove some major bugs with the spies on marathon. I've finished ONE game so far... but started A LOT. And when playing on marathon its not that funny to find bugs after 20 hours of play IMO. Everytime Firaxis attempt to patch the game, they disappoint me with more bugs.

BUT! I could live with the bugs, if Firaxis told me that they were working on a patch with an estimated release day. I know Alexman tried this - but he failed just as much as a man can possible fail IMHO. If he gives an estimate, and that estimate turned out to be twice the time first posted... then it might be a good idea to let us know. Instead of starting a meltdown at CF.

... and then I've been told to not play on marathon :rolleyes: but... thats just the only way I want to play. I dont like small maps and fast gameplay...

So basicly I feel like a beta-tester... ONE finished game so far :eek:

AfterShafter
Oct 21, 2007, 04:36 PM
Why? Let me ask you this and anyone else who feels the same way. Did you have fun playing BTS, even with the bugs? During all the time you played, was there not times where you enjoyed yourself?

Even with the bugs I'm still glad I bought it the day it came out, but that's just my opinion.

Their last patch made me unable to play it with my friends, and I've yet to hear anything about this weeks after its release... So I can honestly say that I haven't enjoyed playing a patched BTS at all, in any way, shape, or form. I love Firaxis' games, but would you defend the 3.13 patch *at all* if you were in my position? I've just rolled back and shake my head at Firaxis releasing such a piece of garbage patch - if I didn't love their games so much, I would drop their products as a result of this type of thing, as I've done with several lesser games in the past.

PieceOfMind
Oct 21, 2007, 05:15 PM
There is still time... but I'm not buying any new firaxis products in the future - not at release day anyway :(

I feel the same way. Lack of communication frustrates the patient and impatient alike because they can't have any idea what to expect. If people get impatient with realistic ETAs then that's their problem.

Personally I'd encourage anyone who is having serious problems to actually forword their concerns to Take Two. Even if they can't help you they may get the hint that the game's got serious problems.

Dominico
Oct 21, 2007, 05:30 PM
I can never get round the idea that pc games can be released with so many faults. I cant think of any other business where you can get away with this.

Console games work out of the box, why cant PC games?

Yes you can argue that PC's have so many different facets there will be faults, but in that case repair them when they are pointed out. The main reason is a console game cant be repaired once its released, so it has to drop back in schedule till its as right as possible (Assassins Creed as an example).

The saddest thing is most of the faults games are released with are faults for all, not a system specific thing so its just lazyness. Rather than pay for testing and QA they just send it out and wait for the populace to say whats wrong then fix it bit by bit.

I have to say Civ are normally alright for this but not this latest game. The worst culprits in my experience were always the Total War series who would refuse to release more than 2 patches no matter how half assed the games.

I know that 90% of the problem behind this lies with the publisher refusing to put any more money into the project so they get the hate, but it must also be down to the game designers underestimating the resources they need just to get the game published.

I wonder if i will see the day when a game publisher gets sued now more and more people are playing games into their adulthood. I think the main reason that game companies got away with this behaviour in the past was that it was mainly children who played.

lol sorry, rant over. Im just a bit wound up im having to play without any animations since i handed £15 over to Firaxis...

AfterShafter
Oct 21, 2007, 05:43 PM
Console games work out of the box, why cant PC games?

I recently bought a game called Eternal Sonata for the XBOX 360... Not very good, by the way... But anyways, it only starts roughly one out of five times that I put it in the system. Not the only game I've had problems with this generation too...

Smidlee
Oct 21, 2007, 05:55 PM
I recently bought a game called Eternal Sonata for the XBOX 360... Not very good, by the way... But anyways, it only starts roughly one out of five times that I put it in the system. Not the only game I've had problems with this generation too...

I know I got my share of crappy console games down though the years especially those rushed for Christmas release. Even back in C64 days I bought some sorry games without any hope of a patch.

Bhruic
Oct 21, 2007, 08:52 PM
and kills the game altogether for people who did not install the game in the default directory.

You know, I keep seeing this reported all of the place. I didn't install the game in the default directory, and I had no problem installing the patch. It didn't try and stick anything in the "wrong" directory. The game is patched correctly, and reporting the correct version. Did I just get exceptionally lucky?

Bh

Elandal
Oct 21, 2007, 11:06 PM
I second Bhruic's observation. I have BTS installed in non-default location and patch applied just fine. I have to add that I patched by downloading the patch and executing it, not by internal update-game system (I download and manually apply patches whenever I can).

jpinard
Oct 21, 2007, 11:20 PM
You know, I keep seeing this reported all of the place. I didn't install the game in the default directory, and I had no problem installing the patch. It didn't try and stick anything in the "wrong" directory. The game is patched correctly, and reporting the correct version. Did I just get exceptionally lucky?

Bh

No, works fine for me too. And mine is not only in a non-default directory, but on another hard drive as well!

King Flevance
Oct 21, 2007, 11:55 PM
There is still time... but I'm not buying any new firaxis products in the future - not at release day anyway :(

That makes 3 of us then. I like BTS. I actually still think another patch is on the way too.

But vanilla had all sorts of problems for me. From day one and past the date of 1.61. Warlords, I skipped because I thought it wasn't worth its money. BTS was worth its money. And I get GG's thrown in as a kicker to add to the value pack.

But I am not at all impressed by the support (or lack thereof) from Firaxis/Take2 as far as customer relations and patching goes. I was dissappointed with 3. Especially concerning some very gamebreaking bugs never being fixed. Capture the Princess anyone? ... oh wait. But the thing is, I overlooked these flaws in the game to enjoy it because I like the game of Civ and is the game I call "my game".
I will overlook the flaws in Civ 4 too. A whole lot easier than I could 3 because I have began to get into modding and seeing how I can change what I don't like. But if I am just going to be waiting around for the next patch anyways so I can enjoy the game, I will just wait for Civ 5 complete to come out.

I have had long personal boycotts with companies before. And this isn't really a boycott so much as a smart consumer move IMO. Depends on what I see though. Some companies have 'redeemed' (for lack of better word) themselves in my eyes from later titles and I pulled off the boycott. (Sierra was one)

It sucks to see Civ going down the tubes as far as quality goes. But in the end, I always hope for the game to come out shining. Civ 3 was almost there IMO before it got abandoned. Fixing some of the major bugs would have put it up on a higher pedestal than it currently is. Hopefully Civ 4 BTS will fully live up to its potential before it gets tossed aside for the next project.

gps
Oct 22, 2007, 01:31 AM
You should, despite the bugs it's a FAR superior game to any of those. The thought of going back to Warlords now just makes me cringe.

And I will soon. ;) Thanks to Bhruic's great work, obviously the Community brought BtS where Firaxis should have put it. That's the big advantage Civ 4 has over Civ 3. If they don't want to finish it, we can. One major reason for me to buy Civ 4 at all, after bugs and insane copy protection almost drove me completely out of PC gaming.

ori
Oct 22, 2007, 04:40 AM
You know, I keep seeing this reported all of the place. I didn't install the game in the default directory, and I had no problem installing the patch. It didn't try and stick anything in the "wrong" directory. The game is patched correctly, and reporting the correct version. Did I just get exceptionally lucky?

Bh

I second Bhruic's observation. I have BTS installed in non-default location and patch applied just fine. I have to add that I patched by downloading the patch and executing it, not by internal update-game system (I download and manually apply patches whenever I can).

No, works fine for me too. And mine is not only in a non-default directory, but on another hard drive as well!
:hmm: there goes another theory ;) I have seen quite a lot of reports that had BtS installed in non-default locations and the installer put files in the default location - so I assumed that was the problem, if it is not it is something else. Of course finding it is not made easier by the fact that quite a lot of people reporting broken games use cracked versions for which there is a simple solution (buy the game :p) - but I doubt it is all of those that report problems caused by the patch, just testing this is neigh impossible...

Antilogic
Oct 22, 2007, 12:26 PM
Well... From day 1, I had to edit xml files to remove some major bugs with the spies on marathon. I've finished ONE game so far... but started A LOT. And when playing on marathon its not that funny to find bugs after 20 hours of play IMO. Everytime Firaxis attempt to patch the game, they disappoint me with more bugs.

BUT! I could live with the bugs, if Firaxis told me that they were working on a patch with an estimated release day. I know Alexman tried this - but he failed just as much as a man can possible fail IMHO. If he gives an estimate, and that estimate turned out to be twice the time first posted... then it might be a good idea to let us know. Instead of starting a meltdown at CF.

... and then I've been told to not play on marathon :rolleyes: but... thats just the only way I want to play. I dont like small maps and fast gameplay...

So basicly I feel like a beta-tester... ONE finished game so far :eek:


I'd say you have gotten the royal shafting of the pRNG-god. Despite my heavy working schedule, I have finished about 7 or 8 games so far. I've started many more, but quit them because I lost interest in what was going on, or didn't play for a week and felt like starting a new game and not trying to figure out what I was doing the weekend before to pick it up again. The only games I had to quit was when I had "Lock Modifiable Assets" on and then patched the game, only to find my running game as Frederick wouldn't load. It's also pretty obvious why that happened, though, so I'm not going to whine to Firaxis.


I'm convinced ori's observation of using cracked games is correct. My game isn't exactly in the place it "should" be either, but when I boot from the CD I purchased, patch and all, it works like a charm.

Wodan
Oct 22, 2007, 01:26 PM
Yeah... it always makes me wonder. For some people, cracked games are the norm. Usually because of the country in which they live. I'm not saying that as a negative to them... it's just the exchange rate, and other factors, which makes it economically less advantageous for them to purchase a retail copy. That's the world market for you.

Anyway, my question is what is the correlation with that factor and with incidence of trouble with the game? It would be interesting to find out.

Wodan

toft
Oct 22, 2007, 01:30 PM
I'd say you have gotten the royal shafting of the pRNG-god. Despite my heavy working schedule, I have finished about 7 or 8 games so far. I've started many more, but quit them because I lost interest in what was going on, or didn't play for a week and felt like starting a new game and not trying to figure out what I was doing the weekend before to pick it up again. The only games I had to quit was when I had "Lock Modifiable Assets" on and then patched the game, only to find my running game as Frederick wouldn't load. It's also pretty obvious why that happened, though, so I'm not going to whine to Firaxis.


I'm convinced ori's observation of using cracked games is correct. My game isn't exactly in the place it "should" be either, but when I boot from the CD I purchased, patch and all, it works like a charm.

I'm not sure I misunderstood something here... but my low number of finished games isnt because of instability, cracked game or anything. BTS is without a doubt the most stable version to date IMO, and I'm not running it with any cracks. I just simply quit the games I've started because of the bugs I've found. Then "patched" it with solvers or bhruic's "patches"... but something always comes up, and then I lose interest :(

Antilogic
Oct 22, 2007, 01:50 PM
I'm not sure I misunderstood something here... but my low number of finished games isnt because of instability, cracked game or anything. BTS is without a doubt the most stable version to date IMO, and I'm not running it with any cracks. I just simply quit the games I've started because of the bugs I've found. Then "patched" it with solvers or bhruic's "patches"... but something always comes up, and then I lose interest :(

I'm not suggesting you have a cracked version of the game, that was a different part of my post. To my understanding, you quit the game because of bugs. I have not quit a game of BtS for that reason, ever. I have never even seen half of the bugs that people post on these forums...I often wonder where all these mysterious problems are coming from. My game runs smoothly with no problems at all.

T.A JONES
Oct 22, 2007, 04:51 PM
I'm not suggesting you have a cracked version of the game, that was a different part of my post. To my understanding, you quit the game because of bugs. I have not quit a game of BtS for that reason, ever. I have never even seen half of the bugs that people post on these forums...I often wonder where all these mysterious problems are coming from. My game runs smoothly with no problems at all.

*response to bolded text by T.A

YEs fine and dandy...once you except your playing a mini me version of civ3 correct? ;)

IM not tryin to say I know it all but what proportion runs "smoothly with no problems at all"? ahem, I mean that ain't what a civ3 player would call insignifigant or small? :)

Does your Xpience include churning mods that add everything exept Sluggish play with long turn delay?

Serious, Mybe post a youtube turn of 31 civs on a Huge map late game to end the debate? ...ok even 16 civs? ...how bout just a huge map late game.

Heres a performance example on a bulked up mod (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z-Q5mK_0qFY)(FAR Horizons aka the biggest, with 4era custum soundtrack) played on a map bigger then civ3 huge and past 350 turns.

IM just tryin to explain what some have come to expect in performance if you can show similar results I will be humbled my good man. (truly your honesty is much respected from my side)

Smidlee
Oct 22, 2007, 05:00 PM
[

Serious, Mybe post a youtube turn of 31 civs on a Huge map late game to end the debate? ...ok even 16 civs? ...how bout just a huge map late game.
Where have you been? There are plenty of mods let you play with 34+ civ on superhuge maps (more civs than civ3) if that's what someone wants. The only limit you got to watch out for the 2gb 32bit limit which can be increased. (BTS has made some improvements) If that's not enough then there is Galciv2 which you can play on a map with 700+ habitable planets and will get even bigger with the new expansion. Civ3 was great in it's day but now is showing it's age.
Of course A 7 year old game should have no problem running fast on a modern day PC. It's a no brainer that a modern day PC will run 7 year old first person shooter extremely fast compare to recent FPS.

T.A JONES
Oct 22, 2007, 05:10 PM
Where have you been? there are plenty of mods let you play with 34+ civ on superhuge maps (more civs than civ3) if that's what someone wants. The only limit you got to watch out for the 2gb 32bit limit which can be increased. (BTS has made some improvements) If that's not enough then there is Galciv2 which you can play on a map with 700+ habitable planets and will get even bigger with the new expansion. Civ3 was great in it's day but now is showing it's age.

DUde I do appreciate that flawed 32 build you found out about. That explains a lot. STill, IM invitin him to post a decent map turn to show us what "smooth Civ 4 looks like, mybe to prove that theory wrong if he goes dares to play big enough,,, er, half of what civ3 handle easily (in # of civs or maps size)
I knew 31+ its possable otherwise I wouldn't of asked to see it, smooth however? like you say not so easy is it?

Just tryin to to prove my top line of my last post, plain and simple.
Of course, it wouldn't be decent of me to ask such a thing if I didn't show my ends first, yes?

btw THats to be most fair, thats a random turn I posted(not staged). I could have waited for one with less AI vs AI conflict and posted a 30 sec vid but then wheres the show ;)
My fav part is the 6 navel bombarments US drops on my door all in less then 5 seconds!

Smidlee
Oct 22, 2007, 05:15 PM
Well years ago Civ3 didn't run so fast with these oversize huge maps with 31civ (including those WW2 mods) which was the reason I didn't play them. (5-20 minutes between turns .. no thanks) I'm not a fan of "bigger is better" myself.

King Flevance
Oct 22, 2007, 05:22 PM
Hey Smidlee is Vista able to handle more of a bridge from an earlier analogy (I believe it was yours) that you used?

Smidlee
Oct 22, 2007, 06:26 PM
Hey Smidlee is Vista able to handle more of a bridge from an earlier analogy (I believe it was yours) that you used? It's my understanding that with Vista 64bit you can allocate the whole 4gb of memory for a 32bit program instead of the 2gb user/ 2gb Window kernel split . Unfortunately I was one of those who got stuck with 32bit Vista (new pc) so I haven't tried this first hand.

T.A JONES
Oct 22, 2007, 06:51 PM
Well years ago Civ3 didn't run so fast with these oversize huge maps with 31civ (including those WW2 mods) which was the reason I didn't play them. (5-20 minutes between turns .. no thanks) I'm not a fan of "bigger is better" myself.

HEY Ive aways said IM waiting for CIv4 to evole the way CIv3 has. THe reality is we are in the now and Bigger has only become better for civ3

CIvs a world sized game you need a epic feel to makew you think your goin up against entire world sized armys and stuff. Like IF your told anther civ has joined against you that should mean more then 6 cities.
I could go on but look how many world Ive written already.

You see I didn't mind making moves for that many units back in the day It was being drawn away from my attention span by long ass turns that ruined the day. ONce that was cured I could stay in the grove so to speak and big did become better

the whole point is if someone say CIv4 performs flawless that means they are like you and feel small is best, if they felt large was best they would not being sayin what antilogic is, period ;)

btw Atilogic is a stand up member know doubt. I mean no offence to his person..only his prefs :lol:

BSmith1068
Oct 23, 2007, 11:16 AM
*response to bolded text by T.A IM not tryin to say I know it all but what proportion runs "smoothly with no problems at all"? ahem, I mean that ain't what a civ3 player would call insignifigant or small? :)

Does your Xpience include churning mods that add everything exept Sluggish play with long turn delay?

Serious, Mybe post a youtube turn of 31 civs on a Huge map late game to end the debate? ...ok even 16 civs? ...how bout just a huge map late game.

the whole point is if someone say CIv4 performs flawless that means they are like you and feel small is best, if they felt large was best they would not being sayin what antilogic is, period ;)



So.. let me get this straight. Because BTS does not run well on some user built mods that are extreme, we are blaming Firaxis for a buggy game?

The way I read Antilogic's post was that the normal, non modded game, worked well for him, and he did not have any of the reported bugs that others are having.

While I have not played extensively, I too have not seen these bugs (except for some of the minor ones that Bhuric has already fixed) - definitely nothing that would cause me to stop playing.

Granted I don't play MP, so I have not had to deal with any of the sync issues others have discussed (which should be fixed IMHO).

Dominico
Oct 23, 2007, 11:35 AM
Ignorant to suggest that those of us with problems are playing cracked versions and not all that helpful. Is anything going to be done about the problems with animations or is this only a problem with XP gamers and so not important?

I wonder if they will have problems with the new console version they are bringing out soon or if thats why we have nothing but silence, they are busy rigorously testing and debugging that version lol.

JBConquests
Oct 23, 2007, 11:47 AM
I don't run any mods with BTS and I am not noticing any *major* bugs that would prevent me from finishing a game other than the multiplayer sync bug which is a huge failing of Firaxis. Geez, there testers couldn't even start 1 game in multiplayer???

Anyways, before I rant on that too much, I have played huge, marathon games with the maximum # of civ's (unmodded) and performance is fine for me. I don't have to wait much at all. (Unfortunately I don't have a save anymore for the last huge marathon game I played and am currently playing a standard map game)

I used to try and play huge games in Civ3 Conquests with max # of civ's (unmodded) on a new PC (Custom Built, very powerful back then anyways...) and was unable to finish a huge game because it was too slow. Sooo, I would be inclined to say that the performance of Civ 4 is probably a little better than the performance of where Civ 3 was back when the Civ3 expansions were coming out.

It is ridiculous to gripe about the performance of Civ 4 directly against Civ 3. That would be like comparing the performance of Windows XP against Windows Vista. It makes for an interesting discussion but in the end, if you add new code (i.e. functionality, smarter AI, etc...) the software gets slower. Its the laws of software development.

ori
Oct 23, 2007, 12:19 PM
Ignorant to suggest that those of us with problems are playing cracked versions and not all that helpful.
Just to be clear, since this discussion started with my post: I do not believe that the problems I listed are due to cracked versions alone. The problem is that I have come across a lot of posters who had those problems and it turned out or I highly suspect that they use cracked programs. This now poses the problem to distinguish between those that have the same problems with legit copies of the game and those that use cracks. This also makes it easy for developers to attribute these problems completely to cracked versions if they want to since its impossible to prove on the web that posters don't use cracked versions (for all I know everyone and no one who posted in this thread so far does - I highly suspect neither of those two is correct though :mischief:)

The animation problems are probably due to conflicts between the code and some graphics cards (or their drivers more likely) - which should be addressed by the developers but even if they did (do ;)) you'll always find some cards that won't work properly. This is hard to track down for at least two reasons:
1) the multitude of cards out there makes it a daunting task to ensure compatibility with all of those and I am glad that they at least made sure that you can disable some stuff in the game files so that this does at least not crash the game (I know this is not a satisfactory answer). And for the record it is not an XP problem - I know three extremely different machines all running XP and all running the games without Animation bugs - so I would argue it is not XP but rather some other problem (of course three is a sample size that is much too low to argue that with certainty, but I also am sure that most people playing Civ4 run XP and that most of them don't have that problem).
2) the ineptitude of the Take2 Tech Support which unfortunately does not seem to even read emails send to them makes it hard to be sure that such bug reports including the necessary hardware information actually reach developers - the tech support section on this site (which Firaxis links to instead of the tech support offered by Take2 (and for good reason - see above :gripe:)) is not really suitable for this since only few people actually post complete records of their hardware and drivers.

Civinator
Oct 23, 2007, 08:30 PM
To be honest, even today with Civ 3 you can have long turn times. SOE (Storm over Europe) has turn times of about 18 minutes today. That´s why it is not published at present. That mod starts with more than 8.000 named units on the map. And at some time when there are reached about 12000+ units sometimes mysterious crashes did happen. We called that effect "MUA" (maximum units allowed), but may be we even run with Civ 3 in the limitations of 32-bit machines, Smidlee did post. Another Civ 3 mod, TCW II (The Cold War II) by El Justo was retransferred from a 362x 362 map to a 180 x 180 map as present turn times of about 8 minutes were considered too long.

But it seems, Civ 3, with all of its setbacks, was the last "classic civ-game" that was produced. In former games of the civ series, there was always a possibility to transfer the graphics of the older version to the newer version without big problems. Here Civ 4 broke with that tradition. And for me (subjective standing point) these 3d graphics of Civ 4 are ugly as hell and a possibilty to transfer the thousands of well made and -in my eyes- much better looking civ 3 units would have been more than needed. And in my eyes much worse, these ugly 3d graphics make no sense for gameplay and additionally sometimes confuse me.

The new civ games are getting a more and more cartoonish styling, what I really don´t like. This started after Civ 2 (which tried to be more historical)with some units in Civ 3 (tank, transport) and became much worse with Civ 4 and the statement of Firaxis senior producer Barry Caudill, that they found with Civ Revolution "the essence of civ which can make its way even to to a pc version" (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=6070857&postcount=1) is really alarming in my eyes about the future of the civ series.
In my eyes some of these 3d graphics in Civ Revolution look like an exploded toilett brush and the leaders are even much more cartoonish. May be a possible Civ 5 will look like "Mickey Mouse Complete". I see no real chance to replace these -in my eyes-more than ugly 3d graphics in Civ 4.

And it seems Firaxis in new versions of the civ series always cuts out the features I did like. The Civ 2 feature to easily do events was cut out in civ 3 and the same for the handling of helicopters, caravans and spies. The idea to be more historical of Civ 2 was abandoned as cartoonish graphics were introduced with Civ 3 (and this was badly maximised with Civ 4). What I mostly liked in Civ 3, the units graphics, was cut out in Civ 4, the same with the idea how artillery should work (what Firaxis was only able to solve properly for sea artillery in Civ 3). I liked to have seawarfare and instead of improving it, it was simplified. The statement that "sea is only another kind of desert" doesn´t make any hope for getting things better in the future. Hey Firaxis do you know, that more than 80 % of the world is sea and sea isn´t an other kind of a desert?

In the earlier versions of the Civ series (Civ 2 and Civ 3) a lot of these shortcomings could be corrected by modding. The shortcoming of the 3d engine in Civ 4 (and as brickheaded as Firaxis is in this point, in future versions too) can´t be corrected with modding. So for me it´s not alarming, that there is no new patch for Civ 4 BTS, as Civ 4 -in my eyes- is unhealable spoiled with that 3d engine. With the statements of Firaxis senior producer Barry Caudill above, Firaxis still is thinking about a new version of Civ and it seems Civ 4 will dissapear out of the head of that software company much more quickly as all other versions, that did preceed it. Alarming in my eyes is -with the statements of Barry Caudill above - that there won´t be any more satisfying versions of Civ for me. This means, I have to stay with Civ 3 and Civ 2 ToT, until another company tries to fill that gap.

JFLNYC
Oct 23, 2007, 09:29 PM
I agree with much of what you've written. In particular, how much the 3D graphics detract from what I consider is the Civ experience. I really don't care whether sheep are moving about or pigs are oinking or whether I can view my cities from different angles. What I care about is gameplay. In my view, so much time and effort was spent on developing and integrating the 3D graphics that most other aspects of the game have suffered. Your point about artillery is illustrative. The whole point of artillery is that you don't have to bring it in close to do damage. Yet one can no longer fire more than one space. There are lots of little annoyances too. For example, in Civ3 you could locate any visible city in the world by using the SHIFT+L command. Now you've got to scour the whole map in search of cities. Also, the forced centering on the active unit is very annoying. Why can't I just stay where I am on the map. If I want to center on the active unit, I'll hit "C." That reminds me: In Civ3, if you want to center on your home city, all you have to do is hit "H." Why was that little convenience so hard to carry over into Civ4? And I, too, find it much harder to discern what's going on visually.

Again, I think it all goes back to the focus on 3D. I'd guess Firaxis felt they couldn't put out another 2D game for fear of being labeled behind the times. But, for me, Civ has never been about graphics as much as strategy. All that being said, I'm not saying Civ4 is a bad game by any means. I play it and enjoy it very much. It just seems that a lot of the collective gameplay wisdom and innovations which evolved over time were lost in Civ4 in the name of creating a 3D game.

gunter
Oct 24, 2007, 05:40 AM
JFCNYPD, I agree about that the rookie artillery should be able to fire from 2 tiles distance, I also add that the expert ones should be able to shoot from 3 tiles distance,anyway that's OT indeed ;)

Wodan
Oct 24, 2007, 07:00 AM
What you guys are talking is form over function. If, for you personally, form has little value, that's understandable. However, it is inarguable that to attract the new generation of gamers, particularly kids and teenager, any new civ game absolutely has to have better graphics than were seen in Civ2 or Civ3.

There's no reason we can't have both form and function.

Wodan

r_rolo1
Oct 24, 2007, 07:26 AM
^^ Limited time and resources? If you don't have time to do both a good form and a good function ( using your wording ) , you have to choose... and clearly the Civ IV team choosed good graphics over good game mechanics ( not my words: I read Soren's blog a while ago, when he was discussing why the SMAC unit workshop system was not in Civ IV..... one word, just one word: graphics (in his opinion ( that I respect .... goood game making is hard ) the SMAC workshop would prevent good looking units, due to dificulty to make them out of Lego-type graphic blocks ).... Form over function QED ).

I agree that the civ community needs fresh blood ( how many of us came from civ II or SMAC ? ), but a game with some logical flaws in his core system and with a sometimes hard management ( I really miss the city search funtion of civ III, especially when in war ( "the enemy is near XYZ" ... Where the hell is that? scroll, scroll , zoom in, zoom out, F1 , search again..... ) ) may not atract a lot of people, in spite of the shiny graphics ( even AOE3 beats Civ IV to the points in there )... people come to civ games searching for a strategy game, not for eyecandy (a little of it can't hurt, but it is not the most important stuff ). Let's hope that BtS may be developed to his full potential and that the still hypotetical Civ V will have a more well thinked structure ( and please remove all forms ( direct and especially the indirect ) of anti human bias out of the game, please..... )

JFLNYC
Oct 24, 2007, 07:49 AM
There's no reason we can't have both form and function.

Then why don't we have both?

The point is we have more form and less function in Civ4. If Civ continues to add form and lose function, it won't attract new customers anyway.

Bandobras Took
Oct 24, 2007, 08:07 AM
I agree with much of what you've written. In particular, how much the 3D graphics detract from what I consider is the Civ experience. I really don't care whether sheep are moving about or pigs are oinking or whether I can view my cities from different angles. What I care about is gameplay. In my view, so much time and effort was spent on developing and integrating the 3D graphics that most other aspects of the game have suffered. Your point about artillery is illustrative. The whole point of artillery is that you don't have to bring it in close to do damage. Yet one can no longer fire more than one space. There are lots of little annoyances too. For example, in Civ3 you could locate any visible city in the world by using the SHIFT+L command. Now you've got to scour the whole map in search of cities. Also, the forced centering on the active unit is very annoying. Why can't I just stay where I am on the map. If I want to center on the active unit, I'll hit "C." That reminds me: In Civ3, if you want to center on your home city, all you have to do is hit "H." Why was that little convenience so hard to carry over into Civ4? And I, too, find it much harder to discern what's going on visually.

Again, I think it all goes back to the focus on 3D. I'd guess Firaxis felt they couldn't put out another 2D game for fear of being labeled behind the times. But, for me, Civ has never been about graphics as much as strategy. All that being said, I'm not saying Civ4 is a bad game by any means. I play it and enjoy it very much. It just seems that a lot of the collective gameplay wisdom and innovations which evolved over time were lost in Civ4 in the name of creating a 3D game.

Er . . . how precisely did Civ IV being a 3D game prevent any of those things? Given that Civ IV removed the major and poorly designed inconveniences of pollution striking a tile and an entire city being unable to build because 3 of its population are unhappy (not to mention having an intelligently designed combat system), I'll forgive them a few minor inconveniences.

Incidentally, go to your options and click "no unit cycling."

JFLNYC
Oct 24, 2007, 08:12 AM
Er . . . how precisely did Civ IV being a 3D game prevent any of those things?

You've proven the point. Saying that the focus on 3D likely caused the omissions is the most benign explanation. What's yours? A conscious decision by Friaxis to make the game less full-featured (e.g., ranged artillery) and convenient (e.g., finding cities)?

Bhruic
Oct 24, 2007, 08:12 AM
The point is we have more form and less function in Civ4. If Civ continues to add form and lose function, it won't attract new customers anyway.

I don't agree at all. How much "function" there is in Civ IV is completely a matter of personal opinion. In my opinion, we've got at least as much "function" in Civ IV as we did in III, if not more. The only area that "form" interfered with "function", imo, is with the system requirements for larger maps. But in terms of actual gameplay, I don't think it suffered at all. The artillery example you list is a design choice. I'd agree with the ability to search for a city - while you can view a city by using the F1 screen, sometimes I want to know where the city actually is on the map, and it can be hard to scroll around and find it.

Bh

Wodan
Oct 24, 2007, 08:46 AM
^^ Limited time and resources?
Yes, agreed.

I agree that the civ community needs fresh blood ( how many of us came from civ II or SMAC ? ), but a game with some logical flaws in his core system and with a sometimes hard management ( I really miss the city search funtion of civ III, especially when in war ( "the enemy is near XYZ" ... Where the hell is that? scroll, scroll , zoom in, zoom out, F1 , search again..... ) ) may not atract a lot of people, in spite of the shiny graphics ( even AOE3 beats Civ IV to the points in there )...
That's a subjective evaluation of a particular function. Civ4 has some functional improvements over Civ3. Different people will say different things.

people come to civ games searching for a strategy game
That's a little simplistic. Maybe YOU did, but people come to Civ for all kinds of reasons. One of which is a contemporary graphic look.

Then why don't we have both?
Rolo answered that, I think. However, I do think it's not a one-or-the-other thing. Civ4 has functional improvements over Civ3.

The point is we have more form and less function in Civ4.
Disagree. Civ4 lost some functionality. Civ4 added some functionality.

Wodan

Vladesch
Oct 24, 2007, 09:50 AM
For those that are claiming that there was minimal testing done, since how could the possibly mis the OOS bug in multiplayer, I present the following....

A long time back, I cant remember which game it was even, they had out of sync bugs. it may even have been a RTS game. Eventually it was tracked down to people running with cracked versions of the game.

Doing a little but of hypothesis... I imagine that 2 copies of the game can go OOS if one of them is generating a different list of random numbers, so combats resolve differently, or perhaps the AI does different things. Perhaps a change in the memory layout by running a cracked version could cause this.

Perhaps someone else remembers the game this was happening with. Perhaps Rise of Nations? or Starcraft?.

In any case it's probably not so wise to be jumping the gun and accusing them of inadequate testing. If it turns out like this other game that the OOS is caused by cracked versions then you might end up looking a bit silly.

Bandobras Took
Oct 24, 2007, 09:58 AM
My friend and I were getting the Out of Sync error (both with purchased copies). However, we each did a complete reinstall and that solved the problem. I suspect I had tampered too much with my XMLs. :)

Bandobras Took
Oct 24, 2007, 10:03 AM
You've proven the point. Saying that the focus on 3D likely caused the omissions is the most benign explanation. What's yours? A conscious decision by Friaxis to make the game less full-featured (e.g., ranged artillery) and convenient (e.g., finding cities)?

No, I'm saying that the more likely explanation is redesigning certain aspects of the game from the ground up. I listed pollution, unhappiness, and the combat/XP system as examples. Against those major improvements, something as piddly as two-square artillery when you can just as easily use bombers seems a miniscule complaint at best.

I can't think of an instance where I'd need to find a specific city and not know exactly where it is on the map, anyway. I click on the minimap and go there. ;)

Vladesch
Oct 24, 2007, 10:09 AM
Yeah, any changes that could alter the outcome of a game or behavior of the AI could easy cause the 2 games to go OOS.
Then theres the unofficial patch which would cause OOS errors with someone whose not running it. Unless everyone is either running it, or not running it, you're going to have problems.

Wodan
Oct 24, 2007, 10:30 AM
One thing we should realize is that official testers are probably required to have a legal purchased copy. Cracked copies, by definition, are not tested, and should rightfully not receive any company support in tracking bugs / problems.

Now, it's a valid point that people who use a cracked copy may cause customer service issues, either by publicly blaming it on the company, or whatever.

There's no easy answer. Not from the company's viewpoint, not from "legitimate" customer's viewpoints, and not from cracked-copy users viewpoints.

Wodan

JFLNYC
Oct 24, 2007, 11:12 AM
No, I'm saying that the more likely explanation is redesigning certain aspects of the game from the ground up. I listed pollution, unhappiness, and the combat/XP system as examples. Against those major improvements, something as piddly as two-square artillery when you can just as easily use bombers seems a miniscule complaint at best.

With all due respect, you and Wodan are missing the point. Of course Civ4 added some new functionality. The question is, why did we have to lose other functionality at the same time? Saying you'd gladly give up ranged artillery for other improvements is a false choice. They obviously figured out how to implement it and that it was a good enough feature to include in Civ3. Why not include it plus new functionality in Civ4? Why not build on success?

As I said before, the most benign explanation is that they were so focused on implementing features such as 3D that they didn't have the time and resources to include other features which had already been developed for Civ3 (e.g., ranged artillery and a better way to locate cities). The alternative answer -- that they made a conscious decision to eliminate helpful features and conveniences which they'd already developed -- makes no sense at all.

JFLNYC
Oct 24, 2007, 11:17 AM
P.S. Before anyone says: "Well, they had to make choices, based upon limited time and resources," I know that. The point is they would have had more time and more resources if they weren't so focused on 3D. And, for many of us, the trade off of game play elements for 3D is not a good one.

ori
Oct 24, 2007, 11:18 AM
The alternative answer -- that they made a conscious decision to eliminate helpful features and conveniences which they'd already developed -- makes no sense at all.
:hmm:

Removed ugly glance tab from Foreign Advisor

case closed :evil:

Wodan
Oct 24, 2007, 11:30 AM
I hear you about the resources devoted to 3D.

They obviously figured out how to implement it and that it was a good enough feature to include in Civ3.... the most benign explanation is that they didn't have the time and resources to include other features which had already been developed for Civ3
Developing a feature for a totally different engine is little help (and may even be counter-productive). We might as well be talking about a totally different game. Just because they have code to implement something in, say, Starcraft, doesn't mean they automatically know how to do it in Civ4. Same thing for Civ3 to Civ4... it's probably more work to reverse-engineer the feature than to simply do it again from scratch.

The alternative answer -- that they made a conscious decision to eliminate helpful features and conveniences which they'd already developed -- makes no sense at all.
No, I think we hit on it earlier.... simply a decision of limited resources, and what features are able to be implemented for those resources.

I suppose the question for our discussion is, if they keep the Civ4 engine for Civ5, it is reasonable to expect and ask them to "bring back" some of the "lost" features. Since they now have a good engine foundation, the limited programming resources could be devoted to adding more functionality.

Of course, we might run into problems with the game becoming bigger and bigger and unable to run except on better PCs. Of course, if Civ5 comes out in 2009, it is reasonable to expect a better minimum system requirement of the consumer base.

Wodan