Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 31
10-23-2010, 12:46 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darren_Kitlor
The canon purists complained and we're forced to have a review system that both gates content and has potential for abuse by reviewers.

It's a shame a simple report feature was used and been done with.
Source for this?

Seems this decision was made before UGC even became a common topic on the forums here. As a "canon purist" I have no problem with all content being available. Just slap ratings on it and all is fine. Put the mission entry in a simple dialogue list. So long as it's not sitting on the open game world map, purists should be able to easily excuse bad UGC away as not being part of the actual game world.

Heck... put all UGC on the holodeck and there's no problem at all from a purist's perspective.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 32
10-23-2010, 01:07 AM
As a fellow City of Heroes "Mission Architect" veteran, Armsman speaks for me:

First of all, you are drastically underestimating people's interest in min-maxing their XP. Early in CoH's UGC system, one faction (the Freakshow) gave about 10% more XP per hour to kill; by the end of the 3rd day, all you could find anywhere near the top 50 missions were Freakshow farms. No storytelling, no content of any kind, just the largest possible maps full of the optimum XP/minute mobs to repetitively farm. When that got nerfed, they moved on to the next-best. And the next-best. And the next-best. All you could hear in zone chat, for days on end, was "looking for (noun) farm" and "(noun) farm LF (n) members, P(lease)S(end)T(ell)." If UGC gives XP, it will work the same way.

If UGC gives rewards, it will be exploited. Period. Bet me any sum of money you care to name. You're going to end up spending the same percentage of your ongoing code maintenance budget on exploit fixes for UGC that CoH has been stuck with ever since they added it to theirs. Trust me on this; MMO players are not any different here than in any other MMO, and you're even using roughly the same engine. There is no reason, not one reason of any kind, to think that you can repeat their experiment and end up with a different result.

Secondly, any player-driven rating system that isn't at least as smart as Amazon's recommendations engine can and will be exploited, especially if there is even the most trivial reward for being in the top listings, even if it's as little as a 5 point Accolade, even if it's just a couple of slips of latinum. Fleets, in particular, will almost certainly take turns rating each others' missions the highest possible rating, so that their fleet can dominate the UGC list and monopolize the UGC rewards, however trivial they are. How do I know? Because in City of Heroes, what it gave was a ZERO-point accolade, and the badge-collectors still insisted on hogging it for themselves and their friends.

Telling me how many people rated "Vulcan Love Slave part 10" five stars doesn't tell me anything about it. Now, if you can tell me that other people who 5-starred the same stories that I did, and who 1-starred the same stories that I did, a stastistically significant number of them also 5-starred "Vulcan Love Slave part 10", that's potentially useful information.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 33
10-23-2010, 01:32 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by InfamousBrad
Telling me how many people rated "Vulcan Love Slave part 10" five stars doesn't tell me anything about it. Now, if you can tell me that other people who 5-starred the same stories that I did, and who 1-starred the same stories that I did, a stastistically significant number of them also 5-starred "Vulcan Love Slave part 10", that's potentially useful information.
The more intelligent the recommendation system, the more people will moan and cry and not understand why their missions aren't being recommended more often.

Ultimately there's no way to win.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 34
10-23-2010, 02:25 AM
Finally a more robust debate regarding the upcoming UGC.

UG content cannot, will not, and should not, be placed in a position next to developer made content. For it cannot replace professional content no matter the ratings, the material comes with no real connection to developer made content as a larger body. For the UGC missions are made to serve the individual for more reasons than can easily be listed, not the whole. Even if we assume that the motivation is beyond perfect, it will ultimately be fan creations of variable degrees of quality, and ratings does not take into account a larger frame of reference, only individual merit, once again.

And it is that which is the main problem, UGC fails to represent content within a larger context, for it is by nature an infinite collection of pieces destined to never settle down into a greater whole. You could of course pull out pieces that seemed to fit in, and place them somewhere else, in some kind of collection. But that is beyond a rating system, and the presentation format of the UGC.

I say all of this belongs on the Holodeck, for UGC creations is by nature fan creations made for other fans at best, not some kind of viable Star Trek content replacement. It is possible to find good things within a system like this, but the criteria for good quality content is yet again individual. And that transcends a rating system, some pieces will always be drowned in it's own presentation format. A system like this generate a lot of noise, compared to what might float to the top of it.

UGC do have the ability to engage and keep content creators busy. But do not push it too hard into the world at large, for it is not ready to replace real content at present time. IMHO.

---
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 35
10-23-2010, 02:52 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sernon
stuff
For a second there I thought your forum name was Sermon, and thus highly appropriate.

Anyway, yes. Especially for people like me who would prefer to make stories that are explicitly alternate to STO's events.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 36
10-23-2010, 03:10 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnthonySabre View Post
Based on the CoH system, most players are only interested in playing missions that are high ranked.
But in CoHV you have many other search options than the user rating of the missions. You can find good missions there very easily, it's very simple to avoid playing terrible boring farm missions, because the players who develop and release their missions also release a description with the mission. And beside that there are headwords you can search for.

There is no problem with UGC tools, as long as Cryptic can prevent massive exp farming missions. I do not share any other concerns then this regarding the UGC tools, escpecially not about "crap missions". If there are only 100 good missions found between the thousands of missions ppl will create i'm happy. Nobody is forced to play "crap missions", nobody is forced to use the UGC tools yet to play UGC missions.

I found the CoHV Mission Architect a very original and good feature, and i think with what Cryptic has learned of Pragon Studios mistakes about the MA, they will release an even better UGC tool. I really look forward to the release of the STO UGC tool.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 37
10-23-2010, 03:22 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sernon
the material comes with no real connection to developer made content as a larger body.
...
But do not push it too hard into the world at large, for it is not ready to replace real content at present time. IMHO.
I think you really underestimate alot of community members at this point.

Beside that, Cryptic told it will be possible to create mission-chains in the future when they expand the tool, not only single missions. But hey .. there are alot of single missions developed by the Cryptic devs, so it will not be to hard creating UGC missions with the same quantity & quality

Keep in mind, such a UGC tool will not replace official released content, it's for sharing your own stories / missions / ideas with other players and bring in some diversion.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 38
10-23-2010, 03:33 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maledicus
I think you really underestimate alot of community members at this point.

Beside that, Cryptic told it will be possible to create mission-chains in the future when they expand the tool, not only single missions. But hey .. there are alot of single missions developed by the Cryptic devs, so it will not be to hard creating UGC missions with the same quantity & quality

Keep in mind, such a UGC tool will not replace official released content, it's for sharing your own stories / missions / ideas with other players and bring in some diversion.
Quality is not the issue so much as not being the work of someone Cryptic has hired to write their story for them. If STO itself were to become a medium for fan expression as opposed to a game by Cryptic, its nature as an entity would have to shift, apparently in a way that Cryptic and/or CBS is not comfortable with because of the insistence on panel reviews and anointing some volunteer works and not others 'kosher' for being pushed alongside main game content.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 39
10-23-2010, 04:18 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by dstahl View Post
Anyone who accepts the Foundry EULA can rate content. Anyone who plays the content can rate the content. I've explained in better detail that mission reward xp is being implemented as based on time to completion and content within the episode. If there are specific questions, we are setting up a Foundry forum section where we'll keep a running FAQ of this stuff.
*breathes sigh of relief*

I have no issues with there being nil rewards for UGC content missions. That includes XP, skill points, merits and BO points.

I have no issues with there being absolutely no reward for being a '5 star' rated mission. In fact, I'd prefer there to be no rewards as it lessens the likelihood of rigging.

I do, however, have a major problem with any UGC episode I create being 'approved' by some douchebag council. Let the players decide whether my missions are worthy or not.

I would rather 10,000 crap missions with 1 pure awesome mission hidden in amongst it than 3 mediocre 'approved' missions.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 40
10-23-2010, 06:39 AM
Regardless, "Average Ratings" won't work.
Here's why. Let's say 80% of the players don't like hard missions, but you do. So any "hard" mission would only receive a 20% score, which means they'll be lost in the mass of "bad" missions. That's just an example, there are countless factors like this that will decide if its a mission you'll like or not.
Rankings need to be "personalized", that is the ranking you see on a mission needs to be calculated based on how you've scored missions in the past. So, if you've scored "hard" missions highly, then other "hard" missions should be rated highly.

This doesn't mean "categories" - there are too many variables possible for even one type of mission to try and start categorizing them. What it means is the system examining how you voted in the past and matching your votes with other players (that have voted similarly) to calculate a "personal" ranking just for you. This always ensure you'll enjoy every mission you play. It's not even that hard to do.

It's ludicrous to believe we're all the same and are going to like the same missions. I've been saying this for months (see the UGC Features), hopefully if enough people quote it someone at Cryptic will wake up about it.
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