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Author Topic: Be Like Baseball (A very old article about gaming and gamers)  (Read 9298 times)
Neon_Knight
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« on: September 13, 2008, 09:16:47 AM »

I've rescued this article from the (now defunct, after the 08' crash Tongue) Capture site at BeyondUnreal. I can't find this article at the Internet Archive; if I had success, I will link to that post. This is the original article. Despite the fact that is written thinking about UT2003, it fits for every game, and IMHO is worth the reading:

Be Like Baseball:
Opinions are like onions, they make me cry!

I've never been good at shooting baskets, but my next door neighbor can hit ten in a row from the three point line. I think basketball should change its rules and enlarge the baskets and add a funnel so my shots no longer bounce off everytime I shoot. If they don't do this, the game will die! Now this may seem stupid, but many Unreal fans want similar things for UT2003. The flak cannon is too strong, the goo gun is too silent, the minigun is too fast, and so on. Since computer games have the ability to change themselves over time via patches, Epic has been known to add some of these user suggested changes in an effort to better satisfy the players. I have a big problem with this.

I can't tell you how many times I have visited the Official UT2003 forums and have seen subjects such as "Suggestions for next patch" or "List of necessary changes or the game will DIE!” I find it funny that these self-proclaimed "game developer wonders" think that they know more than the guys that make a living out of this industry. Epic, trying to please all and be everything to everyone, includes these changes into the next patch in an effort to silence these "wonders". But what do you know, almost the very next day after these "fix-all patches" have been released, the "wonders" are back complaining about something else.

This is just plain wrong.

Epic should be the one to define how things are played and configured and not the players. You don't see any players in the NFL, MLB, NBA, WNBA complaining about the shot clock or the distance of the three point line because it unbalances the game. They just play the game and try to win with the rules that have been set. It's time to stop complaining about stuff being unbalanced and start living with the fact that it is impossible to perfectly balance a game.

Mainstream sports of today are full of imbalances - home field advantage and the team who gets to bat last in baseball are a few. These are never going to change just like the hit power of the flak cannon should not be changed to suit the likes of the players. Games are meant to test how the player reacts to certain predicaments, and how the player combats these predicaments should not be changed because a player wants them to be changed.

If people truly meant that they want a game like UT2003 to become as main stream as basketball, these cyber athletes will have to take a cue from them. Play following the rules that the developer has set about and try to make the best of it.

Written By: Zenny On August 12, 2003, 7:52 pm

(Now replace Unreal for Quake, UT2003 for OpenArena and Epic for Id/OA Developers, and the weapons by their OA/Q3 counterparts. Tongue)
« Last Edit: December 25, 2008, 06:38:54 AM by Armageddon_Man » Logged


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PsYthe
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« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2008, 11:51:17 AM »

To be honest, I don't think this game (oa) could be any more balanced. Rocket Launcher is the only thing that's a bit stronger than the others, but of course it has its disadvantages like every other weapon.

Oh, and the Liz model is unbalanced because of how lame its crouch is.
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Neon_Knight
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« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2008, 12:01:24 PM »

If I'm not wrong, that text talks about the whining about game's gameplay, (in the text case, UT2003, in the forum case, OA) and with the 0.8.0 release, some people just whined about, for example, the Prox Launcher at oasago2, (and I'm sure there's some whining about Nailgun and Chaingun as well) instead of trying to know how to counterattack mines, (yes, they can be neutralized) they whine and claim the PL to be deleted from the map.

Players should adapt to the game, not the game to them. (Like a sport journalist says: "at least I see that of that way" - "Por lo menos así lo veo yo" Tongue)
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"Detailed" is nice, but if it gets in the way of clarity, it ceases being a nice addition and becomes a problem. - TVT
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pulchr
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« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2008, 12:13:39 PM »

i adapt to the mines by leaving the server. seriously i don't think weapons like mines belong in fps-games Tongue

especially when that map (oasago) was so fun without the mines. now i just hate it Sad
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fromhell
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« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2008, 11:30:06 PM »

i adapt to the mines by leaving the server.
stop whining and shoot the mines
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Progress of OA3 currently occurs behind closed doors alone

I do not provide technical support either.

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yasha
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« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2008, 04:02:35 AM »

What is problem with mines in oasago2? They are better then rail in obctf1 and all space maps. The thing is some weapons may annoy you, but you must know how to counterattack them. Prox mines can be easily destroyed by 1 rocket, what is harder than to destroy rail, but I don't complain to anything, i try to play knowing how to get rid of them.

And all weapons are balanced as they should. There is no weapon what is best for everything (maybe BFG, but it is special weapon), and all are different (maybe nailgun is too similar to shotgun but...).
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pulchr
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« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2008, 07:53:21 AM »

the prox mines might work if the server has a low amount of players on each side. but servers running oasago2 with 14-16 slots and half of each team on defense makes for a very boring gameplay. one of the reasons is that the location of the prox weapon are far too close to the defending base. defending players can pick up the weapon in a very short time and spam the area around the flag (edit: map). i don't know if the weapon has any limitations as to the amount of mines that can be laid out at any one time - but imagine three players on defense all spamming out mines and then going to pick up the mine layers for new fresh mines...

yes i am aware of the fact that you can destroy the mines with rockets etc, but doing that while being shot at by several defenders is not what i consider a fun game. that's the reason why i just hop off to another server when these mine laying engineers fill up the server. thankfully many players spamming these mines are newbies and it get's better after they've played the game for a while.

just say no to mines: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Campaign_to_Ban_Landmines

Wink
« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 12:49:09 AM by pulchr » Logged
PsYthe
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« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2008, 08:49:17 AM »

If someone knows how to place the mines strategically enough to own you, consider yourself owned, do not consider the game broken. Of course the chaingun is a little uncounterable sort of like the lightning gun, but it eats up ammo faster than everything else. Nailgun I think is hard to hit with at a distance greater than 1 foot because of its slow projectiles, but if you're letting someone get point-blank with you, you aught to die!


And of course there's always avoiding the situation in the first place and sniping people off before they get to you.
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Cacatoes
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« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2008, 09:07:05 AM »

I'd say any weapon has its "misuse" or can be considered annoying depending on how the map is designed.

Even bfg can be easily overcome if you make some big space maps with railgun, even minigun can be annoying if you make a long corrider with slots in the wall so that people shoot at the ones coming.
Maybe mines can be some funny weapon on some still-non-existing map, or it can have some more strategic use (such as : not using it as soon as you get it so that you keep ammo for elsewhere). It indeed depends on where you put the item, of available ammo, of respawn time ...
On oasago2f2 I didn't find much people using the grenade launcher, maybe some good players knew how to use it and had some use of it, I suppose there are ways to take advantage of the weapon and you know them when you are skilled.

The goal wouldn't be to totally ban a weapon from the game, but to design a map in which these boring misuse can't affect players.
Most complains about weapons come because they are used by unskilled persons who make easy frag.
Some weapons like rocket launcher or plasma gun almost require the player to have some good skill to use it, rare are the situations where you can just use them in a non risky way, or without having someone in front of you who's got the same weapon.
So yes, every weapon you put on the map affects the gameplay, and there are gameplay which are better than others.
Edit: And for these lame weapons where easy frags are possible, map has to  be designed to limit them, and that's one of the reason why I like pul1ctf. (dick suckeeer  Cheesy it has railgun but we can easily hide, I think you did some quite good job for it).

My 2 cents Wink
« Last Edit: September 14, 2008, 09:15:59 AM by Cacatoes » Logged

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vindimy
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« Reply #9 on: December 26, 2008, 02:28:42 PM »

interesting article...

my 2 cents Smiley
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Noob Sauce
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« Reply #10 on: December 26, 2008, 10:54:36 PM »

How do we adapt to the fact we'd like to see some new game modes but can't program for shit?
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Snickersnack
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« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2008, 12:48:12 AM »

How do we adapt to the fact we'd like to see some new game modes but can't program for shit?

Why adapt? Specialization is for insects.

There are no born coders. Learn to do it yourself. Take baby steps. Empower yourself! *barf!
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Noob Sauce
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« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2008, 09:25:11 AM »

You think I haven't tried?
« Last Edit: December 27, 2008, 09:27:16 AM by Noob Sauce » Logged
Speaker
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« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2008, 10:49:31 AM »

Quote
There are no born coders. Learn to do it yourself.

Snickersnack has a valid point here. Programming is not as difficult as you think. Especially nowadays, when you have the net as a resource. Q3A is written in straight ANSI C which is not a very difficult language to learn. There are tons of programming forums, tutorials, even full textbooks on programming are available. You can always ask someone if you get stuck. According to my experience people on programming discussion forums are quite helpful if you ask them nicely.

Of course, to learn e.g. C well enough to be able to modify the Q3A engine takes a fairly long time especially if you had no programming experience before. Alternatively, you can try to convince some of the developers to implement the mod you imagined. But I guess it is an easier job to learn to program. :-)
« Last Edit: December 27, 2008, 10:52:50 AM by Speaker » Logged
RAZ3R
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« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2008, 11:52:09 AM »

Um... the rules in just about every major sport get changed all the time - not big, game changing rules (generally) but small tweaks that mean the game evolves quite drasticly over time. Just look in to it a bit closer, there are always rule changes going on. The other thing is none of these sports started out anything like they are today, an initial concept happens and people play it, then the people playing it a lot start divising rule changes, things to make the game better. It's the same with computer games, while there will always be whine on forums there are also good suggestions to help improve game play - the developers will test their games but only to a point, 5 years down the line and several thousand players later there are bound to be valid suggestions on how to improve game play or make things more fair, which is important for competitive game play.
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Snickersnack
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« Reply #15 on: December 27, 2008, 02:26:35 PM »

You think I haven't tried?

Not at all. You just sound discouraged.

In ancient times, a computer user was also a programmer by necessity. If you're into FOSS, you're in much the same situation.

Perhaps I'm off base, but I think a solid 6 months of C experience and a Q3a mod book should be a sufficient foundation to produce a very simple mod. Such a mod is unlikely to set the world a flame but it will give you something tangible that can show off and help keep you motivated. If you find the experience rewarding, you can slowly work up from there.

Keep in mind, even id's FPS origins are humble.
http://www.mobygames.com/game/catacomb
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Speaker
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« Reply #16 on: December 28, 2008, 02:45:28 AM »

Um... the rules in just about every major sport get changed all the time - not big, game changing rules (generally) but small tweaks that mean the game evolves quite drasticly over time. Just look in to it a bit closer, there are always rule changes going on. The other thing is none of these sports started out anything like they are today, an initial concept happens and people play it, then the people playing it a lot start divising rule changes, things to make the game better. It's the same with computer games, while there will always be whine on forums there are also good suggestions to help improve game play - the developers will test their games but only to a point, 5 years down the line and several thousand players later there are bound to be valid suggestions on how to improve game play or make things more fair, which is important for competitive game play.

Nicely summarized. In case of open source computer games this matter is IMO more critical. If those who control game development resist any changes (even reasonable ones) suggested by the players, the game is liable to be split into an increasing number of partially incompatible 'mods', each played by few people only. This is a sure way to oblivion.

The usual answer to requests for modifications is  'you can always make your own mod if you don't like our game'. However, some changes can be implemented only by modifying the engine or server code, and then incompatibility is inevitable.
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Fitacus
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« Reply #17 on: December 28, 2008, 04:42:25 AM »

The Q3 scene on www.esreality.com is mainly like the article states the relation between players and their games. 2 exaggerated examples:

It's like a stubborn child doesn't get its lovely toy so everybody has to pay attention to my whine -> RAGE is the consequence! Toleration...no? So then fuck off if u won't be my fellow beliefer! :-(

"For gamers by games" Wtf? It has to be said "For the developer by the devoloper!" Do u agree? So cmon lets bash ArQon who destroys our lovely game as he is responsible for each crap he put out without asking us gamers :-(
« Last Edit: December 28, 2008, 04:44:11 AM by Fitacus » Logged

"The things you own, they end up owning you."
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