About moderation and development

This topic is more so targeted at IA because I was really curious about a few things.

  1. What are your moderator standards?

It seems to me that you want to avoid promoting users to moderators altogether in here, is it because you think you can handle that work all by yourself or because you feel like you can’t rely on anyone else? Is there another reason, like for example no one here is suitable for this?

  1. What are your developer standards?

Some time ago I read that you were rather dissatisfied with the work of hired developers who helped you port CI games to mobile, why is that? Did you not like their programming style? Were you disappointed by their work as a whole, as in their overall performance? Did they take too long with simple tasks, or was their work really sloppy and lazily done?

I’m asking these questions because I want to put two really, really famous topics onto the table:

  1. Forum Moderators

Regardless of how capable Interaction is at moderating, he is a one-man army and he does all the important crap all by himself. Obviously, he needs breaks, and he does take them. The problem is that while he’s absent, bad quality posts reach a peak, or posts that break rules in one way or another. By the time someone reacts, the culprit would have caused more trouble (that’s a rather private/specific case, but sometimes it does happen).
I believe if IA explains his reasoning behind not promoting anyone so far would help us better understand what he wants from a moderator, thus letting someone improve such that they can get the role.

  1. Volunteers

There are several game developers in this forum already (from what I know, I am one, so is qbus, not sure about galbatorix, and my friend Dawid who comes here from time to time. I think Vermishelb and Traveller can also code stuff). Perhaps it could be possible to let us follow a set of rules IA sets so that we can help release updates faster and catch bugs earlier on. I.e. simple bugs like forgetting to change a value (no hard feelings, this is just an example).

  • The forum doesn’t need new moderators (explain why)
  • The forum could have one more moderator (explain why)
  • The forum needs a team of staff members (explain why)

0 voters

  • Volunteering is highly recommended by me (explain why)
  • That’s not a good idea (explain why)

0 voters

  • Volunteering should be in the form of programming alone (explain why)
  • Volunteering could include anything related to assets like textures and music (explain why)
  • Volunteering could also include brief beta testing of builds before releasing them to catch obvious bugs (explain why)

0 voters

@InterAction_studios Please take your time to carefully read through all posts and take them into consideration because they’re important, at least in my eyes. You’re also free to reject all ideas, but if that’s the case, please let us know why.

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Yeah you are right about the staff part. At least emerald and orandza should be hired as mods, because they manage servers very well. :ok_hand:
About the volunteering, yeah, we should test first before full release, because yeah as you said, we should find bugs, about the textures and music, yeah they should be related.

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By the way minasameh, sorry for the inconvenience, but I had to edit the first poll so please vote again

Ok I voted

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You’re right about the staff team part, iA is one of the best moderators I’ve ever seen, but when he’s offline there should be someone guarding the forums.

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Yeah, this is very right.

So to explain my votes:

  1. The forum needs a team of staff members

This implies at least 2 new moderators in my opinion. I would highly recommend people like Orandza, qbus, maybe I’m forgetting someone at the moment but they’re the first two who popped in my mind.

I’m sure they are qualified, especially because they’re both really active, serious, not condescending to people, their communicative skills aren’t limited to rhetorical questions and they care about the forum as a whole.

  1. Volunteering is highly recommended by me

For rather obvious reasons in fact. It’s because we can focus on different tasks while IA is absent and release updates much faster. Of course, this will require a lot of communication. Whoever gets to be a volunteer (if at all!), IA must always be asked for consent.

  1. Volunteering could also include anything related to assets like textures and music and brief beta testing of builds before releasing them to catch obvious bugs

Like I said, IA does everything by himself (obviously except music) and it must be rather tiresome. That’s why getting help not only with programming, but other aspects like drawing and modelling would be beneficial for CIU in multiple ways - more effective working, faster development, some tranquility for IA.

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The forum could have one more moderator (explain why)

No need to turn this forum into an another variation of Arstotzka. Sure, spam, raids and bumps happen but this can be put out with one moderator. Let’s not forget about the fact that iA isn’t always active here and most of these anomalies happen when they’re absent. One moderator would do just fine.

That’s not a good idea (explain why)

I’m fine with people willing to help others with difficult tasks, but gaming industry is rather a quite unusual case. Rookies must be given attention since that gives them more confidence and makes them better at specific duty. Programming and modelling is as hard as assembling a car. Practice first, do your best later. I don’t mean to offend anyone here, but CIU is a fragile game that needs to be treated carefully. One small typo in the code and an entire game won’t respond.

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I’m entirely familiar with the process of game development. I understand its fragility. Sometimes code even seems to be whining for no reason at all and it fixes itself later.

Programming is dark magic.

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Just so all of you know, all kinds of opinions are welcome. But let’s discuss them in a civilized manner. There’s no need to start arguments for something like this.

Personally, I would only reply to people to add something. Like I just did with Mat.

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The forum could have one more moderator (explain why)

One moderator would likely be just enough and I agree with you that Orandza is a good moderator candidate. That’s about all I have to say here, really.

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Yeah, that’s the problem that so called “regulars” were supposed to help with (flagging system). But since it is super easy to get this title (requirements aren’t hard and you can get it without trying) we have now 39 regulars and I feel like every one understands the rules differently. You see we removed flagging ability from “member” tier users and they started to write posts with “off-topic” making a bigger mess. So we don’t only need moderators, but we also need to lecture users on not making a mess. (repeating things someone already said in the same topic, not using like button, not using edit button where writing post under your own post)

Yeah, I’m also curious about it.

Why volunteers? Life is brutal and this is not a charity organization.

I feel like we are now in pretty good speed of releasing updates. (I mean, one week for a new version?)(Still I wouldn’t call many of EA version deserving to be numbered differently, because they weren’t massive and weren’t adding any content (bugfixes could be just Version XX.5)). Yeah and even if it would be a little profit from that I wouldn’t exactly want to help since this game is made in C++ DX 9.0. I despise C++ and would rather work on OpenGL or Vulkan since it is much more convenient for future (DX is locked to Windows and DX12 is locked to only one windows system, we’re right now in era of cross-play on many platforms so don’t get sucked into DirectX if you’re starting gamedev)

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Unless you’re over 18 (and you are), I don’t think you’re eligible to get paid.

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Most of the countries have laws that allow people over 15 years old to work, but only if the hours are restricted. Also why wouldn’t you be eligible to get paid? I mean, you do the work just smaller amount (by speaking of hours) so probably payment is also respectively smaller (I don’t know exactly I didn’t have a work when I was under 18 years)

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" Glory lies in the attempt to reach one’s goal and not in reaching it."

Okay, but how is this related to this thread?

About assets and music: not everyone has an eye for programming and honestly the game needs talented composers and artists as much as it needs programmers because honestly there’s a lot of potential for this franchise to become truly unique.

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Moderators (and especially the punishments they dish out) are controversial. Above else, they must be impartial and level-headed. But moderators are people, too. They can get emotional, and the last thing I want is user vs. moderator drama. Currently, my decisions are final, so there is no conflict. I really don’t want to have to deal with second-guessing the moderators or undoing their ‘wrong’ decisions – that would be bad any way you look at it.

Also, the main purpose of this forum right now is Early Access user feedback, not general community development. In that sense it’s best if I personally go through each post (especially bugs/ideas) and make a decision as to its merit. Moderators will definitely be needed in the future, as the community grows x10 (hopefully).

CIU is a complex game. Exceedingly complex. Complicating factors: It’s in C++ (ugh), it’s a large codebase (200k+ lines), it’s multi-threaded, it’s very fragile because it’s client-server architected at the mission level, it’s (differently) client-server architected at the galaxy level, it’s an MMO (don’t even get me started). The chicken choreography part alone (which ensures that chickens move in a coordinated manner) is something beyond the typical programmer’s capabilities (I’m mentioning this explicitly because it’s precisely what I had trouble with during the iPhone sub-contracting).

CIU code even exposes compiler bugs, and those are rare.

It would take someone with 10+ years of experience in multiple domains (concurrency, geometry, asynchronous and distributed systems, performance, networking, databases) to even consider looking at it. And it would take months of becoming familiar enough with it to make contributions.

So, realistically, programming help is not going to happen. Anyone already good enough to tackle this project is probably already running their own company :laughing: .

What is much more likely is finding help with (a) concept drawings for spacecraft / enemies / waves / weapons (b) artists that can do 3D modelling / texturing ( c) sound designer.

As for (a), the forum goes a long way toward that. (b) is possible, although any hiring would be done based on their existing work, and I haven’t yet seen any fan work that’s up to standard. And different toolchains (e.g., different modelling software) is always a problem when integrating ‘outside’ work. ( c) could also work, but sound design is not such a huge time/effort burden anyway.

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One moderator: I think it has been explained in previous replies. I think one qualified person will suffice.
Volunteering with beta testing builds, programming only: Beta testing builds obviously would help with having a more polished update before it’s out. Also it would help with managment, because work with volunteers is almost like with a dev team, except they have less impact on the game and choices ultimately lie in IA’s hands. Why only programming? Perhaps not purely programming, but I think that should be mostly it. Small tweaks to textures, recolors are great. However I think for the art to be cohesive, it needs to be done by someone already expierienced with it. And while yes, if people make great art that would fit in the game, then it can freely be added. But because people wanting to get something in the game haven’t worked on chickens for the last years, it might seem a little out of place in the game (Texturing, models not being consistent in the game). Music, as long as it fits, could definetly be addded.

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:eyes:

Keep eyes on the “general artwork” topic :wink:

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