Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread

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Offline shyguy

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3450 on: December 05, 2018, 05:48 PM »
Well, I started Wonder World way back when the game was first released. And the file still opens today after all the updates. To properly test a complex simulation game like this would be to do just what I and Fisherman, and many others have done. Build a park and continue to grow it over the last 2 years and then test each new update with that file. To me it's obvious that this is how a game like this needs to be tested. I seriously doubt Frontier's devs have made anything anywhere near as large and complex as Kaleidoscope Piers or Wonder World. At the very least, Frontier should have players send them their large park files and use those for testing. Maybe they do this, I don't know. But I'm pretty sure that they don't, or we wouldn't see these kinds of bugs.
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Offline Fisherman

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3451 on: December 05, 2018, 08:30 PM »
I sent them Kaleidoscope Piers a week and a half ago but I haven't heard back.

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Offline Bullethead

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3452 on: December 05, 2018, 09:44 PM »
To me it's obvious that this is how a game like this needs to be tested.

But, if that's the case, PC would not yet have been released because they'd still be testing it, so you'd not even have begun Wonder World yet.  And Frontier would have gone bust because, after sinking all the money into developing the game up to this point, they'd have only let a few testers play it for the past 2 years.

But let's say they did it that way anyway, getting the money to keep going from selling their children and other unnecessary assets that seemed like good ideas at the time.  So now it's 2 years later and PC is released today.  And guess what?  Despite the fact that it runs perfectly on the 5 or 6 different systems they've been testing it on all this time, it crashes and/or has lots of problems on all the 10s of 1000s of other systems out there that the customers have.

Bottom line, there is no such thing as "enough" testing in the industry, nor can there be.  OT1H, you have the inexorable pressures of time and money forcing you to release by a certain date even if you're honestly trying to do a good job.   OTOH, you have the essentially infinite number of different systems owned by your customers and there's no way in Hell you can test even a tiny fraction of them all, so no matter how much time and effort you spend testing stuff (within the constraints of time and money), there will still be scads of people for whom the game is unplayable.

So, as a dev, you do the best you can, or the best you're allowed to do if you have an evil publisher, hit the button to upload the game for the masses, then drink A LOT while you watch the 1st day's worth of reactions pour in, some of which will be all love and some of which will be all hate.  You can, hopefully, feel like you did the best you could under the circumstances, but of course that means nothing to disappointed customer who have somehow, despite not having lifted a finger to make the game happen, talked themselves into thinking they're at least as emotionally invested in the outcome as a dev who's slaved the past few years on making it happen.  And these folks, without giving the devs the least benefit of the doubt, then go spreading hate and slander all over the internet.

It's really a wonder anybody develops more than 1 game. 
-Bullethead
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Offline Grrt

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3453 on: December 05, 2018, 09:53 PM »
It's a hard world to manage expectations in. But I think Shy more means that even though they couldn't possibly test day one stuff perfectly, that after release, they should have been trying to scour 'worst case scenario' parks and see how their systems react to them.

And certain systems should take common sense as a game developer to understand. Like, having your effects triggered to FPS in a genre that is notorious for FPS killing files. Shouldn't have gotten past alpha. Same with the way they are implementing many other features. It just seems there's a lack of quality control passes. I can give the benefit of the doubt in the short term, but after two years I would expect many of the bugs to be fixed, rather than the game going the other direction and actually breaking itself worse.

Like, I remember when Bioshock: Infinite had tons of delays on release and Ken Levine made it clear they would rather postpone a bit and get the game right rather than face the wrath of the masses from rushing an incomplete game out. It's a tough line. But if you know your game is going to have tons of DLC and will need to last quite a while to keep your studio afloat, it seems prudent to make sure it's a finished product on release so you aren't spending the first two years after it's come out fixing basic bugs that should've been patched in alpha.

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Offline Bullethead

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3454 on: December 06, 2018, 09:46 AM »
Well, the thing is, you can't maintain the full development crew after release.  In fact, you tend to start paring it down even before release as you meet project milestones.  The released crew then moves on to the next project.  So, when a game is released, it's only got a fraction of the staff it had at the height of development.  This is especially true of testers.  The job of testers, and any of the public involved in early access, is to get the game to whatever state upper management decides is fit for release.  Once that happens, testing is by definition over.

From then on, the only testing that goes on has the same goal as the original:  get the patches and DLC in fit state to release.  There's no point in paying a team just to play the game long-term to see what happens over time,  because they'd only give you the exact same type of data, but way less of it, than you get for free from customers reporting problems.  It makes even less sense if you have these guys looking at extreme cases that the bulk of customers will never experience.  You can never make everybody happy so you have to focus on making most of them happy.

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Offline Grrt

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3455 on: December 06, 2018, 12:43 PM »
Well, the thing is, you can't maintain the full development crew after release.  In fact, you tend to start paring it down even before release as you meet project milestones.  The released crew then moves on to the next project.  So, when a game is released, it's only got a fraction of the staff it had at the height of development.  This is especially true of testers.  The job of testers, and any of the public involved in early access, is to get the game to whatever state upper management decides is fit for release.  Once that happens, testing is by definition over.

From then on, the only testing that goes on has the same goal as the original:  get the patches and DLC in fit state to release.  There's no point in paying a team just to play the game long-term to see what happens over time,  because they'd only give you the exact same type of data, but way less of it, than you get for free from customers reporting problems.  It makes even less sense if you have these guys looking at extreme cases that the bulk of customers will never experience.  You can never make everybody happy so you have to focus on making most of them happy.



No, I don't suggest they do that. But if new DLC breaks playability with earlier additions and DLC, that's something worth knowing. If you don't care about maintaining compatibility with giant park files across the life of the game, that's fine, but don't push your recommended specs under that impression. And maybe publish some recommended park limits so that people know how big they can expect to build their parks.

And it doesn't seem like Frontier has made the majority of people happy. It seems most people are decidedly UNHAPPY about the playability of their files, no matter the case, size, level of detail, etc. So as a developer, if you start seeing tons of bugs rolling in and tons of parks breaking and you're getting a ton of reported problems, it's maybe a good move to add a couple staff back into testing and quality control so that you don't hemorrhage all your users and cashflow in the future.

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Offline Bullethead

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3456 on: December 06, 2018, 01:18 PM »
Well, companies know how many copies they've sold, they watch Steam stats on their usage, and they know how many complaints they get.  They can thus estimate how many folks are happy and how many aren't.  Only the most vocal minority of customers are active in the forums so reading them, especially the vermin-infested official forum, is not a representative sample.

Everybody does in-house testing of patches and DLCs.  Problem is, it's hard to get a representative sample.  All through the pre-release period, you use the reports you get to come up with a handful of systems of different specs that you hope represent what most of your customers will have.  This is because, after release, your testing staff goes way down.  So for patches and DLC, you have a few in-house guys running the game on these test systems.  If they can make it work on them, then it's off to market.  This obviously is going to leave more gaps in coverage than pre-release testing, but if you do a good enough job in early access (which works both ways, as early access is pointless without good input from players), then it works reasonably well.

A lot of folks are having performance issues with 1.9.  I've noticed a few myself, mostly just the long time it now takes to load the part icons when you open an editor, but to nowhere near the extent as others, even on my ancient computer.  Seems my own problems were the fault of said ancient computer, too.  So, it could well be that the test rigs at Frontier are more like my computer and less like those having massive FPS loss.

I'm willing to give Frontier the benefit of the doubt.  I'm sure they did the best job they could with the resources available to have a trouble-free release.  After all, the whole point of 1.9 was to make happy customers by giving them custom content.  That's a really big deal and shows Frontier wants PC to thrive for years to come.  But something went wrong.  I'm sure it surprised everybody at Frontier, especially as previously added features (crime, staff features, etc.) seem to have gone off quite smoothly.  But they seem to be working on it and we'll have a patch very shortly.  So in the meantime provide good data so they can fix stuff, and maybe play something else for a change of pace ;).
-Bullethead
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Offline Fisherman

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3458 on: December 07, 2018, 09:36 AM »
Nothing new yet... Hopefully tomorrow.  ;D

Regarding the Tracker, I'd hate to be in the second row.  They made the seats too tall compared to the real ride

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Offline Bullethead

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3459 on: December 07, 2018, 11:46 AM »
Regarding the Tracker, I'd hate to be in the second row.  They made the seats too tall compared to the real ride

Better than the flying coaster, though.  With that, if you're not the lead dog, the view never changes ;)
-Bullethead
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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3460 on: December 07, 2018, 02:06 PM »
Not just the seats, the whole car is HUGE.  I can't think of a single use for this, unless I make a dark ride for giants.

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Offline shyguy

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3461 on: December 07, 2018, 02:33 PM »
Not just the seats, the whole car is HUGE.  I can't think of a single use for this, unless I make a dark ride for giants.
I agree. It's one of the worst-looking rides Frontier has designed.
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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3462 on: December 07, 2018, 04:25 PM »
Believe it or not this is really close to what the real rides like this look like. I will dig up some photos

Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3463 on: December 07, 2018, 04:33 PM »
as you can see one of them below is about an exact replication. The higher the load capacity, the larger the vehicle...and all I can figure is these trackless cars must have huge battery packs and mechanics underneath to keep running all day...thus the huge under sides.








Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3464 on: December 07, 2018, 04:39 PM »
Closest thing I can think of is that shooting gallery ride they had at Paradise Pier, which makes me wish this one at least had guns attached to it.

Edit, because you just posted pictures while I was typing that...   wow, Frontier actually came close to reality, I just can't imagine a ride needing cars that large.  At least the real world stuff has a back row that sits higher than the front row.

What are some of the real world rides that use this?  I want to go look up POV's for them now...


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Offline Fisherman

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3465 on: December 07, 2018, 07:02 PM »
They fixed something in the game...framerates seem to be back up...tested a medium park.  Gonna open up Kaleidoscope Piers now.  Spoke too soon...I'm not seeing an improvement in my biggest parks.  darn.  Oh well.   :'(
« Last Edit: December 07, 2018, 07:25 PM by Fisherman »

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Offline Bullethead

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3466 on: December 07, 2018, 10:23 PM »
LOL!  Here's a funny thing....  I don't care what a ride looks like at all.  I only care about whether or not I can abuse it into something grotesque and/or (emphasis on "and") inappropriate.  It's sooooo good not to be a coaster/park geek.  I don't have to worry about how anything aligns with the real world unless I want to :)
-Bullethead
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Offline GreenCollarDrums

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3467 on: December 10, 2018, 03:29 PM »
WE'RE GETTING A HUSS BREAKDANCE!!!!!

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Offline Fisherman

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3468 on: December 10, 2018, 03:35 PM »
AND the backdrop is customizable

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Online Redhair

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3469 on: December 10, 2018, 04:06 PM »
AND the backdrop is customizable

You mean it's a separate object or a billboard? ^^

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Offline Fisherman

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3470 on: December 10, 2018, 04:08 PM »
They didn't say.  My guess is that it's a billboard and the image shown is the default one.

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Online Redhair

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3471 on: December 10, 2018, 04:10 PM »
Sounds good to me :D

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Offline Bullethead

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3472 on: December 10, 2018, 06:52 PM »
Anything that makes kids puke (look closely at the riders in the background) is a good thing :)
-Bullethead
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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3473 on: December 11, 2018, 06:23 AM »

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Offline Fisherman

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3474 on: December 11, 2018, 06:43 AM »
I think I'm gonna need a bigger Pier...

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Offline shyguy

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3475 on: December 11, 2018, 06:15 PM »
I'm not a coaster head, so I have no idea what that is.
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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3476 on: December 11, 2018, 07:31 PM »
I'm not a coaster head, so I have no idea what that is.

It's Frontier doing a version of the iconic Anton Schwarzkopf Looping coaster from Arrow Dynamics, from what it seems.


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Offline shyguy

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3477 on: December 11, 2018, 08:54 PM »

I was hoping it would be this.
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Offline Fisherman

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3478 on: December 12, 2018, 01:35 AM »
It is!  They said we get shuttle mode too!  :up:

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Offline Bullethead

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Re: Official Planet Coaster Discussion Thread
« Reply #3479 on: December 12, 2018, 07:19 AM »
It is!  They said we get shuttle mode too!  :up:

Yeah, this is the ride with 2 versions, regular and shuttle.  I'm still waiting, however, for the whining to start when they learn which TYPE of shuttle it will be.  Schwarzkopf made several versions:  launched, flywheel, and weight drop.  I'm sure the usual idiots over in the official forum will complain that we got 1 but not another  :mad:up:

BTW, today's ride reveal appears to be a shorter (about 1/3 to 1/2 the height of a Screaminator) drop tower that does multiple bounce sequences.  Space Shot or whatever they call it.  Cool.  Dixie Landin' needs one of those.
-Bullethead
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