Should full release be postponed until the friendly AI is improved?

Should full release be postponed until the AI is fixed?


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harpo99999

Ah kick till it starts
Aug 14, 2014
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from my very limited knowledge of AI, each system ends up needing it's own AI solution, and there is very little crossover between the solutions
 

Lord Zarnox

Founder of the IFTTES
May 31, 2017
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I'm not sure. I kind of imagine that there must be a lot of copy-paste AI solutions and modules out there, these days, that a general good coder could implement, without needing to entirely re-invent the wheel...
Almost all coding nowadays is just copy-paste, with a few tweaks where necessary.
(I wanted to develop AI myself, a decade ago, on my cybernetics undergrad degree, before stuff went too wrong.)
Wait, WHAT?

Also, Cloudflare crashed my phone's browser from a 502... Actually impressive, to be honest.
Edit: It also gave me a 502 while posting this, so yeah. Turns out it doesn't like compliments.
 

ZeroGravitas

Breaker of Games
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from my very limited knowledge of AI, each system ends up needing it's own AI solution, and there is very little crossover between the solutions
Maybe. Or even if there are standard approaches, you still need to be/become specialised to use them quickly and effectively. Certainly for something more cutting edge, like the Unity engine's machine learning system (beta). Which mightn't be suitable, anyway.

But then players tend to like AI that is predictable, so logically simple and deterministic. And tend to perceive improved AI with trivial things like higher enemy health, or speed.

Wait, WHAT?
[...]
Turns out it doesn't like compliments.
Was that... a compliment? Needs work. :p;) (Yeah, I had to go part time in my final year, then suspend, due to my ME/CFS.)

I am beginning to suspect that cloudflare is the root AI for the terminator skymesh
Heh, well, they offer web security solutions and have the biggest content distribution network [1]... And some sci-fi authors have fancied that the first trans-human level AI might arise from the arms race between spam bots and spam filters (some overlap there)... But it seems like cloudlflare stick up for the little guys, at least for now, with Project Galelio protecting political dissent, etc. So hopefully aren't going to become our dystopian overlords immediately.
 
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Jamie

PAYLOAD STUDIOS
Sep 16, 2014
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While Friendly AI is far from perfect it does not seem a sufficiently significant issue to delay release. (In my opinion)
Afraid @Zed is right here. On the list of a thousand things we HAVE to implement/fix in order to release the game across all platforms - AI is not as close to the top as we'd all like.

It's definitely something that we'll be looking at implementing properly post 1.0 - but there are a bunch of other things we need to fix up before release.
 

Jamie

PAYLOAD STUDIOS
Sep 16, 2014
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Certainly not overhauling it, but maybe chance for some minor tweak fixes? Or is it categorically out, in case the time needed for even those spirals out of control?
Working on bugs with the system and/or reworking the system are the same thing. Spending time on AI isn't a priority pre 1.0 i'm afraid.
I don't suppose you'll be filling us in on Payload's apparent sudden shift of pace and priorities, sometime?
I wouldn't say sudden. We've been working on 1.0/console release since late last year. The game needs to be release in order to support the studio. It's simple really :) As we've always said - we intend to support the game post launch with a constant stream of updates.
 

ZeroGravitas

Breaker of Games
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I wouldn't say sudden. We've been working on 1.0/console release since late last year.
Fair enough. The console announce just totally caught me off guard. I imagined it in a more distant future; I'd apparently missed the fore-shadowing. And the timescale of months for 1.0 too, when I swear you guys did have AI scheduled in (perhaps before MP went even longer than the extra time you imagined, etc).

At least tell me that most the crafting bugs are still essential fixes...?
 

Jamie

PAYLOAD STUDIOS
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At least tell me that most the crafting bugs are still essential fixes...?
Unfortunately not. There are bugs like that are higher priority than that right now. Things like "Game crashes when controller is disconnected", "Game crashes when friend invite is sent", "Game crashes when Multiplayer match ends".

I'm sure you can see the reason why crafting and AI are further down the list of priority right now :)
 
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ZeroGravitas

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I'm sure you can see the reason why crafting and AI are further down the list of priority right now :)
They've always been below other priorities, understandably, and that's dragged on, of course... But I never thought it'd be an option to release without fixing crafting - it's a real hot mess, more so than ever (and I found it unusable as a first timer a year ago).o_O

I'm really quite worried now, for Payload, if there's a good chance that most of these issues will be part of a 'finished' product.:confused: I mean, I only ever see players (new and old) ever struggling with bugs when crafting (to greater or lesser extents). And I've been telling people to expect big changes to crafting in the next couple months... But I guess at least my guide and videos aren't in immediate danger of obsolescence, then?
 

Jamie

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It's on our list of things to get round to - as you know, 1.0 is not the end of TerraTech. We will continue to support it after that. 1.0 is just a line in the sand that will hopefully bring a lot of new players in. A small percentage of which will encounter these crafting bugs.
 
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Zed

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Dec 23, 2016
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They've always been below other priorities, understandably, and that's dragged on, of course... But I never thought it'd be an option to release without fixing crafting - it's a real hot mess, more so than ever (and I found it unusable as a first timer a year ago).o_O
As mentioned here in game crafting may indeed have more than a few peculiarities however it *does indeed* work and

I'm really quite worried now, for Payload, if there's a good chance that most of these issues will be part of a 'finished' product.:confused: I mean, I only ever see players (new and old) ever struggling with bugs when crafting (to greater or lesser extents). And I've been telling people to expect big changes to crafting in the next couple months... But I guess at least my guide and videos aren't in immediate danger of obsolescence, then?
Priorities change; it is the one constant of life. There is no need to fear for the studio itself and as a collective whole the devs aka Payload should indeed be congratulated for having almost completed their first project. Multiplayer (hopefully cross platform which will be vital for sales @ 1.0) has to be absolutely bullet proof and be a sufficient "draw" for "word-of-mouth" marketing to contribute to post 1.0 development / additional projects (suggest a remake / clone of PI:ED in Unity 3d if yall are up for it @Jamie)

Unfortunately not. There are bugs like that are higher priority than that right now. Things like "Game crashes when controller is disconnected", "Game crashes when friend invite is sent", "Game crashes when Multiplayer match ends".

I'm sure you can see the reason why crafting and AI are further down the list of priority right now :)
Along with bullet-proof multiplayer gaming that is cross-platform hopefully when it comes to controllers suggestions such as separating propellers from rocket boosters and giving players a dedicated Anchor Tech key / button *WILL* be done prior to 1.0 launch in a scant 80 days or so.

Beyond that the only other immediate thing I can think of as a potential danger is the vast difference in capability between PS4 / XB1 and their updated versions of PS4P / XB1X as mentioned here. Perhaps a different default performance profile to compensate?
 
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ZeroGravitas

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A small percentage of which will encounter these crafting bugs.
I think that's only true insofar as statistically most game owners won't ever play any given game (beyond an hour), and most who do play TerraTech will tend to dive into looting and levelling, ignoring crafting (since it's more cognitively demanding and entirely optional).

But any players who do actually attempt fabricating blocks will definitely encounter a handful of bugs (on top of the unique idiosyncrasies of the system's design) and will either have to lean very heavily on guides/videos or essentially give up. The design space for fully functional crafters is currently very restricted, and not much like what most seem to expect (from other games with conveyors), or has been shown in most videos.

Look, I suppose I don't really want to argue how bad this game (I love) currently is, with it's creators... Clearly Payload needs to make this happen now, or else you guys wouldn't be pushing ahead with it. I (for one) trust you will continue to support and develop TerraTech, of course. But I don't think it'll be as arbitrary a marker as a stable patch update - it's going to mean physical copies on shelves (isn't it?), reviewers and YouTubers treating it as a fully fledged title, etc.

But obviously it would make no (business) sense for you guys to concede this, and I'm probably just going off on one because my expectations have been defied by reality. So I guess I should shush...:oops:


Will you put Zed out of his misery and tell him this is even more pie in the sky? (Or slap me with a wet kipper.):
Multiplayer (hopefully cross platform
 
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Zed

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I think that's only true insofar as statistically most game owners won't ever play any given game (beyond an hour), and most who do play TerraTech will tend to dive into looting and levelling, ignoring crafting (since it's more cognitively demanding and entirely optional).

But any players who do actually attempt fabricating blocks will definitely encounter a handful of bugs (on top of the unique idiosyncrasies of the system's design) and will either have to lean very heavily on guides/videos or essentially give up. The design space for fully functional crafters is currently very restricted, and not much like what most seem to expect (from other games with conveyors), or has been shown in most videos.
Cognitively Demanding? Between Crafty Mike, your guide of what Crafty Mike Doesn't Teach, and forum posts most crafting systems will work with a little trial and error. If they become frustrated there is always a YAFF ready and able to fulfill any crafting desires.

Look, I suppose I don't really want to argue how bad this game (I love) currently is, with it's creators... Clearly Payload needs to make this happen now, or else you guys wouldn't be pushing ahead with it. I (for one) trust you will continue to support and develop TerraTech, of course. But I don't think it'll be as arbitrary a marker as a stable patch update - it's going to mean physical copies on shelves (isn't it?), reviewers and YouTubers treating it as a fully fledged title, etc.
It seems highly unlikely that TerraTech would be placed on physical shelves of brick and mortar sales locations. After all, not all AAA titles utilize this form of sales since most titles will have been patched before the title even reaches a store shelf, let alone a shopping bag.

But obviously it would make no (business) sense for you guys to concede this, and I'm probably just going off on one because my expectations have been defied by reality. So I guess I should shush...:oops:

Will you put Zed out of his misery and tell him this is even more pie in the sky? (Or slap me with a wet kipper.):
Putting me out of my misery? o_O That truly is "pie in the sky" thinking @ZeroGravitas

The thinking behind cross platform multiplayer is not as far fetched as it sounds as long as it is handled entirely by Steam should be entirely possible and would (in my opinion) greatly advance TerraTech's Prominence across all platforms for which it is available.
 
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ZeroGravitas

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Cognitively Demanding?
In that it's slower paced, less attention grabbing, and more demanding of brain energy to focus on than holding down [W]+[Space] and watching the pretty 'splosions.
It seems highly unlikely that TerraTech would be placed on physical shelves
Not the main sales route (for any game these days, is it?), but I've no idea of console distribution breakdown. Point being it'll be out there, actually *on* consoles, which don't even have this concept of 'Early Access', right?
 
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Khaine

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Although crafting bugs are certainly a nuisance, it's not a game breaking nuisance. Personally I'm a bit more worried about the game's staying power.

You can kill almost anything with enough megatons, and you don't even have to touch Geocorp, Venture or Hawkeye to get those. Once you get them there seems to be a general lack of game content, other than exploring 5 basic biomes with some slightly different sub biomes... and crafting.

Crafting is fundamentally disfunctional in this game because a) you can buy anything you want from the shop/terminal after you kill enough techs and b) Money keeps pouring into your bank account with minimal effort. Setup a few auto miners anywhere, mining anything. Watch the money pour in. Kill some techs. Watch more money pour in. Do some missions. More money.

There is absolutely no logical motivation to craft ANYTHING. Except pretty early in the game there's nothing left to explore EXCEPT crafting.

This can partially be remedied by the removal of terminals from the game and by nerfing the store so that it only carries basic components and no resources. Additionally, capture the base missions should give out unique weapons or equipment, to keep the players mashing that "more missions" button.
Since there's no campaign multiplayer for people to endless pit their skills against one another then there has to be rarity in the game, both in rewards as in enemies. Otherwise people will tire quickly.

PS: Personally I think you're shooting your own foot if you release the game without proper multiplayer support. You had the steam splash and it lured me in nicely, and the 1.0 splash will lure more people in I'm sure. But you can't maintain a community with enough gravitational pull to drag more people in if there's no decent multiplayer. And I don't mean arena mode.
 

Anthand1

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You can kill almost anything with enough megatons, and you don't even have to touch Geocorp, Venture or Hawkeye to get those
For me, it was even easier. Since nothing at all challenges aircraft(with the exception of the occasional missile tech), all I had to do to completely dominate was to get a single exp bomb and slap it onto an airplane. This got me from ~500k BB to 1 million in a day, which is completely broken. I really think aircraft need a nerf.
Speaking of money, removing terminals I think is a very bad idea. The only time I ever use money is late game, when I have access to all the terminals. If you were to remove terminals, however, I think the ability to buy techs should come back, but at a significant markup of what their blocks are worth as a tax for not crafting them.
 
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