Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 11
01-08-2011, 03:59 PM
There are two sides to the story. First of all, your right that mission authors arent responsible for pathing errors. But that said, you should test your mission before you publish it, and not just once. If you discern that pathing errors are causing too much of a problem on your mission, then you either have to figure out how to "fix" the issue or not publish your mission. If you decide to go ahead and publish anyway knowing there is a significant(key word) problem, then its partly your fault if you get bad reviews.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 12
01-08-2011, 04:14 PM
Remember no matter how 'good' a mission may be, you'll always get 3 types of responses:

1) Those that love it and really like the story and other elements you had.

2) Those that are completely ambivilent (ie they played it, but didn't see anything either noteworthy, or terribly bad.

3) Those that dislike it (and no matter what you do short of pulling it and replacing it with something else.)

NO MATTER WHAT YOU DO, you will ALWAYS receive reviews in one of the 3 groups, as nothing written is universally loved by everyone. You know you have something nice when the reviews from point one, outnumber those in point three.

Also, if you're going to put something out fpr public consumption and review, know HOW to take criticism, and realize not everyone will see things through your eyes. Know when to accept and process good criticism (and I don't mean 'good' in the sense someone liked what you did, but rather, pointed out something bad/wrong that on reflection you agree with, and can improve); and be able to process 9or ignore) 'bad' criticism - ir someone who just hates an aspect of something; and can't get past sais aspect; bit in the long run, there's really nothing wrong objectively; the person reviewing just hates/can't get past it.

As for ignoring the 'technical aspects'; that's unfair in that, if you KNOW something can happen that will completely screw up the experience for players on a consistent basis; BECAUSE all the players want to do is complete a mission (and bugs like these either outright prevent compleion, or greatly detract from the experience); then it's up to you (or me) as an author to recognize the limitations of the system I'm working in (bugs and all); and tailor and design my content to account for; and minimize these things wherever possible.

If the state of the Foundry improves to that point where you CAN do what you orginally envisioned, go back and redo the encounter at that point, but don't fault a reviewing player because you as an author, who may realize a flaw due to a Foundry bug; refuse to adjust because in your opinion, the bug shouldn't exist in the first place; and it's not your fault if it does and you failed to account for it.

All the above said, IF you're doing something to trick the Foundry; and it works for 90% of the players you play your mission; but (for whatever reason) 10% encounter it; that might be good enough for you overall, but again, you can't fault the player if he/she encountered something that detracted from his experience and he/she either couldn't finish the mission, or found something extremely frustrating due to no fault of his or her own.

In the end, a good author is one who knows the limits of the tool - can vcraete something enjoyable within those limits; and is able to take and process feedback, and know what to accept and what to ignore in this regard to improve their work.

(And hell, I'm going to risk it and pimp my own mission here as it's (I think) two reviews from getting out of the 'Review Content' area and on to the 'Community Authored' section, so if you have th time and would be so kind, give "A Relic's Retrurn" a try )
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 13
01-09-2011, 05:34 AM
Don't just discount such a critic "I have no control over this".

I remember getting a review mentioning that he didn't like the bridge I used in my mission since it wasn't his. Well, of course that's a technical limitation. Either he or someone else suggested just to use the Ready Room for the mission, since it is the same for all bridges. And that made perfect sense and was a great work-around.

I went a step further and decided that this encounter could or should be conducted in the Brig instead, which I think lead to an even better result.

The critic was based on a limitation I had no control over. But was it unfair? It was still wrong, and it did impede the player's enjoyment (it did actually also impede the author's enjoyment). But in this case, there was a work-around, and someone playing the mission after I changed it did actually comment on how he liked my interiors.

So, overall, the review did something good for the mission. It helped convince me to find a better work-around for the technical limitations of the Foundry and overall improved the experience.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 14
01-09-2011, 06:07 AM
Every time a patch comes out, how many people come on these boards screaming and yelling at Cryptic about 'system limitations' and things that Cryptic, in general, had no control over? How many people lambast them for not testing something more before release and letting a bug through?

My prediction is already coming true. Now that the kind of criticism levelled at Cryptic since release is being levelled against players' creations, they can't handle it.

If you're going to publish missions in the Foundry for public consumption, I'd spend a couple of hours reading these boards to prepare yourself for what you're about to be in for. Thinking that they're going to go easier on you as a player than they do on Cryptic is naive.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 15
01-09-2011, 07:06 AM
I wish that the text box was bigger in order to give more in-depth feedback to mission authors. I also wish it was possible to provide reviews and bug reports separately for UGC, so I can provide as much feedback as possible.

I agree with the overall sentiment of the thread as a reviewer. Let's try to be constructive, people.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 16
01-09-2011, 07:58 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by rivenscythe View Post
I wish that the text box was bigger in order to give more in-depth feedback to mission authors. I also wish it was possible to provide reviews and bug reports separately for UGC, so I can provide as much feedback as possible.
Couldn't you use these forums to solve both of those problems?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 17
01-09-2011, 08:09 AM
I agree with Peregrine_Falcon... Serious and helpful reviews should be used in either a P.M. or in the forums if the subject seems relevant to other authors... the idea being to be actually helpful and convey the actual impressions and problems and possibly solutions.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 18
01-09-2011, 08:31 AM
Quote:
Couldn't you use these forums to solve both of those problems?
No, I can't. It's extra work. I want to do it directly after the mission, when the memory is still fresh. I don't want to alt-tab to the forums or open the mail and work out what name I have to send it to.

Am I lazy? Yes, absolutely. But in the end, Cryptic has to design its UI once. I have to jump through the hoops every time. It's just as with the idea that you explicitly state a mission goal or the planet in Sector Space where your missiion starts from. Sure, every player can search for the information himself, but that means every player has to, instead of just the mission-creator.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 19
01-09-2011, 09:23 AM
I agree that the in game ratings and reviews need some serious work and I believe it is up to us a testers and authors to examine the current system and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses and to come up with alternatives that may be helpful.

In the meantime... I try to be helpful to a particular author whose mission I'm reviewing. If that involves taking the time to P.M. or post in the forum, then I'm happy to do so... because I would appreciate the same thing to be done for me.

It should be a two-way street with each of us trying to be helpful to each other. There is no one else that will do it... just us.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 20
01-09-2011, 11:46 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by rivenscythe View Post
I wish that the text box was bigger in order to give more in-depth feedback to mission authors. I also wish it was possible to provide reviews and bug reports separately for UGC, so I can provide as much feedback as possible.

I agree with the overall sentiment of the thread as a reviewer. Let's try to be constructive, people.
You can always mail the author in game. A couple of the players who've played my mission have done that; (and I've done that for some of the missions I've played and reviewed as well) and it's nice in that I get a better feeling for aspects they really liked, or didn' like. Yes, it's not as easy as typing in the review field, but it's always available as an option.
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