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PostPosted: 25 Apr 2013, 09:43 
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If users are too lazy to take a few steps to download and install required programs, they're really just robbing themselves of a quality game experience. All you can do is simply promote the usage of the NewGRFs and try to generate interest.


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PostPosted: 25 Apr 2013, 09:54 
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Have to agree with kamnet on this one... Personally when playing games where I'm able to customize by downloading and install mods, I do tend to spend some "quality time" online trying to find everything that's available for that particular game. And if I find stuff that improves my game from my point of view, I certainly download and use it.

Those who aren't interested in that doesn't bother themselves, and why should I as an artist bother myself promoting a file to anyone who doesn't bother to find it in the first place?

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PostPosted: 25 Apr 2013, 12:25 
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SAC wrote:
Have to agree with kamnet on this one... Personally when playing games where I'm able to customize by downloading and install mods, I do tend to spend some "quality time" online trying to find everything that's available for that particular game. And if I find stuff that improves my game from my point of view, I certainly download and use it.

Those who aren't interested in that doesn't bother themselves, and why should I as an artist bother myself promoting a file to anyone who doesn't bother to find it in the first place?

That's nice, but in practice this means that server administrators are going to give the newgrfs a pass, because it suddenly takes normal players a lot of time to download a newgrf (since it involves registration on a website, waiting for manual approval of their account, and having to put the newgrf file in the right location) instead of just having to click three buttons to download it while still in game.

I understand that you'd think players who want the full experience might as well put some effort into it, but it's a little disheartening to see that for server administrators, things only become more difficult this way. The content that is created here looks promising, but it seems is not really meant for public multiplayer servers. I hope this is something you also take into consideration.


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PostPosted: 25 Apr 2013, 12:47 
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LSky wrote:
I understand that you'd think players who want the full experience might as well put some effort into it, but it's a little disheartening to see that for server administrators, things only become more difficult this way.


If server administrators want to provide their players a full experience, they will also put some effort into it. Not only do they add the NewGRF, but they promote it and educate their players. If an administrator cannot bother themselves to be more proactive about the servers they're promoting, then why should players show more interest at all?

Quote:
The content that is created here looks promising, but it seems is not really meant for public multiplayer servers. I hope this is something you also take into consideration.


If the goal for the player is instant gratification, no, this isn't for them, and a lot of great NewGRFs that are not uploaded to BaNaNaS won't be for them. Those who use Simuscape as their hosting grounds have already considered this, and have decided that they would rather reach users who show a keen interest in their releases rather than pleasing a large number of players who give no acknowledgement or gratitude in return.


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PostPosted: 25 Apr 2013, 15:04 
I am not sure if you ever tried to maintain a server, but things which are not on BaNaNaS are simply unusable if you want to get ANY players on your server.

[Note that I have administrated openttdcoop servers for years now, and helped to get running around 8 other servers completely unrelated to openttdcoop. Both from the start, or just increase audience/quality of already running servers. Arguments trying to demonstrate that it works differently are probably not going to work. I know exactly which newGRFs have what effects not only on gameplay, but also on the audience visiting the server.]

I will just quote myself from https://blog.openttdcoop.org/files/blog ... g_Maps.PDF which describes what newGRFs are good to use from where.

4.2 NewGRF Groups and server accessibility
Servers can be divided into several groups based on the availability of newGRFs, which decides their
accessibility by the general public.

No NewGRFs
Servers without any graphics files are the easiest to get on but of course that itself brings severe
problems. Firstly, OpenTTD is a very vulnerable game in terms of griefing and game destruction by
others. Somehow, most of the people who wish to destroy rather than build can be filtered by adding
newGRFs on the server. Servers without newGRFs also tend to get repetitive and rather boring after
a while.

BaNaNaS only newGRFs
Arguably the most convenient option for a server is to use easily accessible newGRFs found on the
content download server called BaNaNaS. This provides quite a good variety of newGRFs and also
filters out some of the bad people from the server. Typically our Welcome Server.

BaNaNaS and opentttdcoop grf pack newGRFs
The openttdcoop grf pack is a great package of newGRFs which are unfortunately not on BaNaNaS
and therefore can be relatively easily downloaded in one file. Using these newGRFs is great on the
Public Server as we also require IRC presence, but for other servers it is not as convenient because it requires people to have the grf pack before they join that server.

Other released newGRFs / Custom newGRFs
It is of course also possible to use newGRFs which are on forums only, GRFcrawler or some other
places. This however makes it barely possible for anyone to join your server. Last option would be to
use completely custom newGRF which only you and a selected group of people have. That obviously
makes the server automatically “private”.


So let's conclude mainly the last option, newGRFs on *some* page, downloadable somewhere, reasonably google-able.

Option A: server just uses the newGRFs and expects players to grab them - extreme minority will download those newGRFs, you will have about 1 or 0 player per week if your server is starting, maybe around 5 players per week if your server is well known already from before. And that is not a "good" level of activity in a game.

Option B: server releases grf pack which unfiies all the newGRFs it uses to a single download to make it more convenient. In case the server is ran by an organization with well accessible website and in our case IRC channel mandatory to join before joining the server, it is quite good for us to create a GRF pack like our openttdcoop grf pack for example.
However, we cannot remove newGRFs from this package as it is meant to also provide savegame compatibility with our archive, which is years old with all the old versions. This means we could Only Add to the pack, not remove! If you read what SAC wants, that does not work for her purposes at all, yet it is what she causes by not putting content on BaNaNaS.
Also, obviously a problem is that you want this package to be as universal as possible, therefore you definitely do not want to update too often - meaning package-distributing servers are more likely to use outdated versions. (which newGRF author definitely is not too happy about either)

This does work for us, because we are a large community with tradition and without considerable competitors in what we do. Anybody else running a "normal" server which is just "one of the many" however CANNOT afford to reduce his amount of players this severely, unless they want to play alone - or let the server audience die out.

If I were to talk about our point of view further, we are not intending to add any more newGRFs to our package as there is BaNaNaS which is a lot more convenient for administration, for players, and for easiest usage of LATEST versions of all newGRFs without any hassle.

P.S. I am ignoring the moment when a player FAILS to download a newGRF despite he tried to search for it

On another note about pleasing a large crowd vs. demanding people to put effort into downloading your things: increasing the audience in general means you get more feedback. This feedback surely does not come from people who do not care/ do not want to give input, because that is what they already do by providing the feedback. And do you care if the feedback comes from a person who downloaded it the easy way, or with stupid obstacles? I can only imagine a few options happening,
1. you majorly disagree with the feedback and you tell the player you are totally not ever going to do that, done.
2. he gives some feedback but it shows he has not much of an idea what is he talking about - you can always explain it to them, or just link them to documentation
3. he gives you positive feedback like "it is nice" withou a real value - well, still nice to hear and does not really hurt anything
4. he gives you feedback about bugreports - Every bug reported is of huge value, I am always happy when someone finds a bug, because it means they played with the newGRF carefully and are interested in helping make it better - and I want this group of people to be as big as possible!
5. he gives you feedback which gives you some new ideas about future development - do not mistake this for the random trash people spew on the forums, like various ideas without any sense. No, I mean feedback which shows they know the idea of the newGRF, what logic it follows, how to use it, and what could you eventually be interested in

From my own experience with NUTS Unrealistic Train Set, I get all 5 kinds of feedback. And if I can increase the likelihood that there will be more people from the constructive groups, what can that harm?


To conclude what I wanted to say, not putting stuff on BaNaNaS is not helping anybody, including yourself. No players today will go into frenzy about some poorly reachable newGRF if BaNaNaS already offers a gigantic variety which 90% do not ever get to cover.
I do not even mention any quality aspect of newGRFs as everybody likes something else, but what makes you think that your newGRFs are so superior that people will go download them so willingly and it will be worth it for them to put in the effort?
The only thing you do is reduce your audience for absolutely no reason except your self-centered block inside your head, generally justified by "omg we give up our rights to delete it", but why would you ever delete anything.
That is just being a little kid - you do not reach anything at all with it, and nobody will really care about it in the end, but you still need to have the option to do it?
I cannot help myself but to recognize that as nothing else than immature and irrational behavior.

Ask yourself what do you achieve by your stance,
increasing quality of your audience? - You need to care about the vlauable people which give good feedback, not their % as the "idiots" will not contact you anyway.
helping players? - You know the answer here
helping administrators? - they just ignore your things, go have a look how many 1.3.0 servers use non-bananas newGRFs
controlling which versions are used? - not at all, people only are forced to store old versions in case they need them later for their old savegames - making it A LOT more likely that they might use those versions instead of the newest ones
anything else? - Maybe letting people know "we are simuscape, we are different ... or should I quote a world of its own" - alright, be different but I do not think different automatically thinks it is better


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PostPosted: 25 Apr 2013, 22:00 
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I'm pretty sure I made my point of views quite clear earlier regarding this entire BaNaNaS vs. NewGRF thing?

So for the last time; I'm NOT developing NewGRF's for the sake of the TTDLX-community regardless if you play alone or join a server for multiplayer games. I develop NewGRF's for my own sake, for the improvement and enhancement of my own personal gameplay. The side-effect is that YOU can use them as well since I actually do release them - or intend to release them! That's it!

Nothing more, nothing less...

Matter of fact is that I've had websites before Simuscape where I made my custom files available for the sake of others to be able to use them in their own games. I've never been interested in uploading anything to some centralized storage facilities, be it that I've never come across something similar before... but still...

At the end of the day I wouldn't really mind uploading to BaNaNaS, but as it currently works I personally feel it doesn't fit my requirements. And since I do have my own downloads section online, why would I really need a second one? Especially as I provide my files with the side-effect itself in mind... :)

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PostPosted: 25 Apr 2013, 22:32 
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Just a caution;

Unless there's anything new to add to this discussion referring to the BaNaNaS and the availablity of files, please refrain from repeating already posted opinions and/or arguings on the matter!


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PostPosted: 26 Apr 2013, 08:10 
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-Team Simuscape- wrote:
Just a caution;
Unless there's anything new to add to this discussion referring to the BaNaNaS and the availablity of files, please refrain from repeating already posted opinions and/or arguings on the matter!

I simply wished to bring up the issue about multiplayer servers and bring up the perspective from server administrators. I hope that this is allowed on here.

SAC wrote:
I develop NewGRF's for my own sake, for the improvement and enhancement of my own personal gameplay.

I guess this about answers my questions.


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PostPosted: 26 Apr 2013, 18:38 
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LSky wrote:
I simply wished to bring up the issue about multiplayer servers and bring up the perspective from server administrators. ...
We are fully aware of the issues involved for multiplayer servers and administrators. There is nothing we can do to improve the system. You need to talk to the OpenTTD developers to have that Monkey Supermarket redesigned; until such time we stay clear of it ...

Quote:
... NEWGRFs on Content Downloader ...
There are 308 NewGRFs available for download (as of today and if that counter is correct). I'm sure you'll find enough suitable graphic files to set up many multiplayer games. What would my lousy 5 graphic files add that you could not accomplish with what is available ...


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PostPosted: 28 Apr 2013, 01:12 
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A simple matter of curiosity ... Why is a game server unable to host the GRF files required to support the served game? I should think that this would be even more convenient for the players as they would not have to poke about for files, from BaNaNas or anywhere else. This would also mitigate an issue where some players might have the wrong versions.

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PostPosted: 28 Apr 2013, 04:31 
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Nice idea but IMO what about security? Would you trust an unknown server?


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PostPosted: 28 Apr 2013, 06:01 
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athanasios wrote:
Nice idea but IMO what about security? Would you trust an unknown server?
Excellent question. In this case, isn't the player already trusting it?

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PostPosted: 28 Apr 2013, 13:18 
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Furthermore, there could be a copyright problem.
What would stop people sharing "illegal" grf's? This would make it very easy for people to share grf's that have got graphics or code without permission from the original artist/coder.


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PostPosted: 28 Apr 2013, 21:21 
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Quast65 wrote:
Furthermore, there could be a copyright problem.
What would stop people sharing "illegal" grf's? This would make it very easy for people to share grf's that have got graphics or code without permission from the original artist/coder.
In a once-upon-a-time job that I held, (actually several), I was able to access files on the employer's server, perform whatever functions were required all without dropping the files onto my PC. When I closed the session, there was nothing on my hard drive. Those files never left the server. I had access to the server where the work was done. Any tools that I required were embedded on the server and never saw the light of my hard drive. Similarly, it should be possible to host the GRF's directly on the game's server such that they need never be uploaded to a remote terminal (the player's PC).

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PostPosted: 29 Apr 2013, 17:21 
Which does not make any sense in relation how openttd actually works.

e.g. everything is calculated locally and only smaller amount of things is transmitted over the internet.
or, what would you get if the client saved the game and started it locally?
or, the files would have to be either downloaded to a temporary folder, or sent on the fly. And on the fly could reach seriously high network requirements especially with extra zoom sprites.

Even if it makes sense or not, major bananas change is probably very unlikely as it would require changing the terms of service, which would require all of the contributors to agree with the new terms. And I doubt that is even doable.

Not to mention that no such change is necessary as there is no intelligent reason for it.

You gave up your rights to delete things upon putting them anywhere on the internet anyway. You cannot delete it from all computers now once they downloaded it.

Not to mention that removing content is not very constructive, updating it with better content instead is.


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PostPosted: 29 Apr 2013, 18:47 
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Quote:
... <Rubidium>: V453000: why do you even bother? ... <V453000>: you are right, I should stop.
@V453000 - you seem to be pretty addicted to Simuscape, should we refer you to a rehabilitation centre ? :yawn:

You should be satisfied with the 309 NewGRFs that are available on the Content Downloader; or are they all not good enough for your tastes. What could a mere additional 5 of mine do to improve the situation ? Nothing at all, I'd say.


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PostPosted: 29 Apr 2013, 20:36 
Ha, funny

Well, first off, one thing is that you for sure know how to draw, which I cannot say for vast majority of othe newGRFs.
Second, particularly visual newGRFs like BK tunnels or trees from SAC are quite nice and do not have too much competition as there are like 2 other tree sets and I cannot remember any other tunnel set. Still, even though I personally think for example canadian trains work very poorly in things like forced wagon speed limits, it still is one of the complete train sets. Knowing how much does it take to make and upkeep one, it is a shame that it is not used by people.
Last but not least, the more newGRFs are available, the better.

Note that my personal use here is absolutely minimal as I myself truly am fine with the newGRFs I have available, especially since I rarely play without my own train set, and the rest of the newGRFs is more of a fill-up.

And after all, I like to argue when I have clear arguments and reasons. And when any conflicts like with the iGRFs or with what else arise, I think it might be helpful for you to realize that the problem is mostly on your side, the devs are really, really not waging any form of tycoon war here as SAC likes to describe.
Yes many of them do question your actions, your stances and your attitude - but so do I and I believe any active player would. Mainly talking about your stance towards content, and the noise around tt-forums.

In the end, I am trying to help you integrate back in the community (do not mistake this for getting any closer to tt-forums) as I could have seen that your ideas about how bananas works were not exactly correct, from which obviously could and did come some incorrect conclusions.
Yes, even though I disagree with almost everything you have said, do not understand your logic what so ever, consider you various kinds of self-centered people, I still am only trying to convince you about the right thing, because the world around you will not change much.

After all, I could even say for example your train set is "competition" to my own (even though it is not as they both have completely different orientation), but due to the fact that I usually play with other newGRFs than yours or similar to yours, I really, really do not care about the outcome. But it would be nice for the sake of others, and seeing the conflicts from the past does not help either.

I am indeed satisfied with 309 newGRFs as it proves that BaNaNaS is a good system. But I do not see why do you consider your newGRFs so insignificant, of course every bit helps the variety, and if you already spent hundreds or thousands of hours on developing it, having it unused is a shame, and I am saying it as an author, not just as a player of the herd which applauds screenshots on forums.


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PostPosted: 29 Apr 2013, 22:41 
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V453000 wrote:
Ha, funny

Well, first off, one thing is that you...


A few posts above it was clearly stated as follows;

Quote:
Just a caution;

Unless there's anything new to add to this discussion referring to the BaNaNaS and the availablity of files, please refrain from repeating already posted opinions and/or arguings on the matter!


Since you have failed to follow this direction you are no longer permitted to reply any further to this topic. Additionally you are not allowed to start a new topic about the same subject, or participate in any discussions referring to the same subject for the time being, in general restricted to a 12 months period.

Failing to follow this topic/subject ban will lead to a warning!


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PostPosted: 30 Apr 2013, 15:58 
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Trying to convince each other with long posts is a pure waste of precious time-quite contrary to the purpose of these forums. And also for the sake of justice it is better to temporary lock this topic.


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