Flashpoint Germany - beta-testers wanted

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<eddysterckx@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:1111492231.887241.219080@l41g2000cwc.googlegroups.com...
> Hi,
>
> Erik Rutins posted a call for beta-testers on the forum
>
> Read more about it here :
>
> http://www.matrixgames.com/default.asp?URL=http%3A//www.matrixgames.com/forums/tt.asp%3Fforumid%3D85
>
> Greetz,
>
> Eddy Sterckx
>
1. The link is to a private forum.

2. Why would they beta test a game that's already released? Is it really a
new game with the FG engine?
 
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In article <1111492231.887241.219080@l41g2000cwc.googlegroups.com>,
eddysterckx@hotmail.com says...

> Erik Rutins posted a call for beta-testers on the forum
>
> Read more about it here :
>
> http://www.matrixgames.com/default.asp?URL=http%3A//www.matrixgames.com/forums/tt.asp%3Fforumid%3D85

"Access Denied."

And while I can easily understand why they would want to keep my ilk out
of their forum, I'm not so sure why there would be a call for
*betatesters* on a game *in release*.

What's the story with this?



--
Giftzwerg
***
"So if you are a Democrat your value system works like this....

Unborn Child? Kill It.
Sick Woman? Kill it.
Convicted Murder on death row? Do every thing you can do to save it!"

- Wizbang Paul
 
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Giftzwerg <giftzwerg999@hotmail.com> wrote in
news:MPG.1ca9da0d6efd2c9498a22b@news-east.giganews.com:

> "Access Denied."
>
> And while I can easily understand why they would want to keep my ilk
> out of their forum, I'm not so sure why there would be a call for
> *betatesters* on a game *in release*.
>
> What's the story with this?

Ok - link doesn't work for you guys - a cookie thing - should have known
- my bad

Full post by Erik Rutins below - email addresses munged up a bit by me

- - - - -

Hello everyone,

We're aiming to release 1.02 soon and we're hoping to beef up the
testing team to check over the AI and balance improvements still in
progress for 1.03. If you are a FPG fan and would be interested in
helping us with post-release (and future release) testing, please e-mail
to both erikr<dontincludethispart>@matrixgames.com and mauriceb
<dontincludethispart>@matrixgames.com with the subject "New FPG Tester".
Thanks!

Regards,

- Erik

- - - - - -

What's the story behind it : major work on the AI apparantly, so instead
of incorporating the AI fixes in a general patch a few months from now
they decided to release a small 1.02 patch that fixes other problems
while working on the 1.03 patch (the big one).

Greetz,

Eddy Sterckx
 
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"James Cobb" <bismarck71@charter.net> wrote in
news:KWT%d.3746$x64.325@fe03.lga:

>
> <eddysterckx@hotmail.com> wrote in message
> news:1111492231.887241.219080@l41g2000cwc.googlegroups.com...
>> Hi,
>>
>> Erik Rutins posted a call for beta-testers on the forum
>>
>> Read more about it here :
>>
>> http://www.matrixgames.com/default.asp?URL=http%3A//www.matrixgames.co
>> m/forums/tt.asp%3Fforumid%3D85
>>
>> Greetz,
>>
>> Eddy Sterckx
>>
> 1. The link is to a private forum.

My bad - copy&paste gone wrong

> 2. Why would they beta test a game that's already released? Is it
> really a new game with the FG engine?

See my reply to Giftzwerg - same question

In addition : there's talk about extending the FPG engine, it's certainly
not a bad base to build a series on.

Also : just spotted your eMail address - ignore my private email - duh :)

Greetz,

Eddy Sterckx
 
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"Bloodstar" <george.washington@microsoft.com> wrote in
news:d1p1f3$s42$1@sunce.iskon.hr:

> Hehe, Eddy I applied to beta testing of Nappy game :) I will let you
> know is it any good :)

Good or bad, never mind that, juicy inside stories is what we want :)

Greetz,

Eddy Sterckx
 
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Bloodstar wrote:
> > Good or bad, never mind that, juicy inside stories is what we want
:)
>
> That's a promise, I am not villain like some urgh other beta testers
;-)))

You want a juicy inside story ? - you're getting one :)

"The Mythical Panther Girl"

About 2 months ago Dave mentioned that he had hired (part-time) an
undergraduate female student to work on the new user interface code.

Unlike the other Panther boys she's never made an appearance in the
forum, though Dave mentions her sometimes as in "I'll ask her to have a
look at that".

But ... there's not a single shred of proof that she actually exists !
(outside of the fertile mind of Dave that is)

[either that, or she's too smart to get herself involved with the rough
rednecks in the forum]

Greetz,

Eddy Sterckx
 
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> Good or bad, never mind that, juicy inside stories is what we want :)

That's a promise, I am not villain like some urgh other beta testers ;-)))


Mario
 
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eddysterckx@hotmail.com wrote:

> inside info ?? - I said "talk about" : in the FPG forum posters were
> actively looking beyond the current game - add this to Erik's
"possible
> future game" and you get "talk about"...

> Greetz,
>
> Eddy Sterckx

In the industry Eddy "talk about" means more than the public chatting
away amongst itself.

Reporting goes beyond regurgitating same.

Why would Rob Crandall work on a patch to get his AI working? To break
even. FPG was released unfinished and insufficiently tested solitaire,
unless its AI faults were known yet published anyway. As I don't
believe Matrix would repeat its errors from Fortress Europe the latter
I trust is unlikely. Though a good reporter might approach Rob and ask
"did you know your AI leads into battle with its HQ's? No? Why Not?"

But I'm not the one touting speculation as fact.
 
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Adam Parker wrote:

> In the industry Eddy "talk about" means more than the public chatting
> away amongst itself.
>
> Reporting goes beyond regurgitating same.

You seem to take this awfully seriously - I'm not part of "the
industry", neither to I aim to be a "reporter"

"On the forum totally clueless induhviduals were talking about
additional functionalities and extending the system to other theaters "
- happy now ?

> Why would Rob Crandall work on a patch to get his AI working? To
break
> even.

Sorry, that's not logical - to cut his losses he'd pick the quick fix
approach.

> FPG was released unfinished and insufficiently tested solitaire,

Again from what I picked up at the forum : apparantly very late in the
development process some code was changed to make the AI more
aggressive - these last minute changes were then not properly tested
resulting in the current situation. This might be correct as in my
beta-version the AI *doesn't* lead with HQ's or moves into his own
minefields.

> Though a good reporter might approach Rob and ask
> "did you know your AI leads into battle with its HQ's? No? Why Not?"

> But I'm not the one touting speculation as fact.

Are you sure you had your coffee this morning ? You sound awfully
grumpy. This is war-historical - half the posts you read in here are
speculation or daydreaming - and the rest is OT.

Greetz,

Eddy Sterckx
 
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Giftzwerg wrote:

> "It's pretty weak, though" would hit the nail on the head. HPS weak.


LOL

> Anyone looking for a decent solo gaming experience should hold off
until
> they make some serious improvements.

Well, at least they're working on it - which can't be said for every
engine ...

Greetz,

Eddy Sterckx
 
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In article <1111572218.752249.72440@g14g2000cwa.googlegroups.com>,
eddysterckx@hotmail.com says...

> > Thing is, as Matrix admits the AI won't work until at least another
> > patch further on - 1.03 if at all then.
>
> "AI won't work" is a bit strong ...

"It's pretty weak, though" would hit the nail on the head. HPS weak.
Anyone looking for a decent solo gaming experience should hold off until
they make some serious improvements.

I'm not sure the current (1.01) AI in FPG is distinguishable from a
routine that just moves every AI controlled unit directly towards the
objectives.

--
Giftzwerg
***
"So if you are a Democrat your value system works like this....

Unborn Child? Kill It.
Sick Woman? Kill it.
Convicted Murder on death row? Do every thing you can do to save it!"

- Wizbang Paul
 
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In article <1111587414.098013.181830@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com>,
eddysterckx@hotmail.com says...

> Well, at least they're working on it - which can't be said for every
> engine ...

Quite true. But - speaking for myself - simple fairness dictates that I
hammer Matrix as willingly as I do HPS in cases where this very
important aspect of game design is (initially...) overlooked. If/when
they get it fixed/working_better, I'll be the first one to declare my
previous viewpoint inoperative.

And FPG is a particularly offending program in that its AI doesn't even
*defend* well. Other games can at least "boast" that if a scenario
designer plops the defending units in a well-conceived defense, the AI
will fight them adequately from that starting point; the AI in FPG
promptly pulls up stakes and *charges the attackers* in the same pell-
mell rush that characterizes its attacking behavior. This tendency
seems a bit mitigated in the current patch level, but it still more-or-
less comes right at a human player without regard for what it ought to
be doing.

I've seen very, very few games where the AI *attacks* well (TACOPS,
HTTR, KP/BIN/etc.), but it's essential that an AI provide at least the
performance of a "persistent vegetative state" in terms of defending.

--
Giftzwerg
***
"So if you are a Democrat your value system works like this....

Unborn Child? Kill It.
Sick Woman? Kill it.
Convicted Murder on death row? Do every thing you can do to save it!"

- Wizbang Paul
 
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In article <1111586479.796108.247690@f14g2000cwb.googlegroups.com>,
eddysterckx@hotmail.com says...

> > Reporting goes beyond regurgitating same.
>
> You seem to take this awfully seriously - I'm not part of "the
> industry", neither to I aim to be a "reporter"

On the other hand, as a reporter you're generally displaying restraint,
dedication to facts, and general competence that very few of the clones
at The NY Times manage these days.

So maybe you outta update your CV.

> > Why would Rob Crandall work on a patch to get his AI working? To
> break
> > even.
>
> Sorry, that's not logical - to cut his losses he'd pick the quick fix
> approach.

Well, even if we credit him nothing (and I credit him a great deal...)
in terms of loyalty to those people who already bought the game, there's
always the question of future titles in the series. Altruistic or not,
it's to everyone's advantage that the design be put as right as
possible. That's the beauty of capitalism; even the least well-
intentioned have a solid motive to do their best work.

> > FPG was released unfinished and insufficiently tested solitaire,
>
> Again from what I picked up at the forum : apparantly very late in the
> development process some code was changed to make the AI more
> aggressive - these last minute changes were then not properly tested
> resulting in the current situation. This might be correct as in my
> beta-version the AI *doesn't* lead with HQ's or moves into his own
> minefields.

I don't think the current release code (1.01) does that, either. At
least, I haven't seen either of these two behaviors in AI games since
patching.

But Mr. Parker's point is still arguable; I found the "minefields" and
"HQ" problems after *very* few games against the AI. "Unfinished" might
be a little over-the-top, but "insufficiently-tested" seems fair.

> > But I'm not the one touting speculation as fact.
>
> Are you sure you had your coffee this morning ? You sound awfully
> grumpy. This is war-historical - half the posts you read in here are
> speculation or daydreaming - and the rest is OT.

To speculate a bit further, I would offer that a big improvement in the
FPG system would be to greatly expand the "SOP" functionality. My
suggestion would be to lurk around TACOPS and steal a few of Major H's
concepts in terms of pre-prepared doctrine that can be set.

--
Giftzwerg
***
"So if you are a Democrat your value system works like this....

Unborn Child? Kill It.
Sick Woman? Kill it.
Convicted Murder on death row? Do every thing you can do to save it!"

- Wizbang Paul
 
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> You want a juicy inside story ? - you're getting one :)
>
> "The Mythical Panther Girl"
>
> About 2 months ago Dave mentioned that he had hired (part-time) an
> undergraduate female student to work on the new user interface code.
>
> Unlike the other Panther boys she's never made an appearance in the
> forum, though Dave mentions her sometimes as in "I'll ask her to have a
> look at that".
>
> But ... there's not a single shred of proof that she actually exists !
> (outside of the fertile mind of Dave that is)
>
> [either that, or she's too smart to get herself involved with the rough
> rednecks in the forum]

Nice one, I must admit, everything which includes girls from 18-21 years of
age, well, have some James Bond action in the air :eek:)

I have other story, it's called horror of DIAL - UP - I am downloading beta
of Nappy game for last almost 9 hours haha. Still 20 minutes to go... Nice
FTP program, I like that. Urgh... Dial up and beta testing don't go
together.


Mario
 
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On Wed, 23 Mar 2005 11:10:22 +0100, "Bloodstar"
<george.washington@microsoft.com> wrote:

>I have other story, it's called horror of DIAL - UP - I am downloading beta
>of Nappy game for last almost 9 hours haha. Still 20 minutes to go... Nice
>FTP program, I like that. Urgh... Dial up and beta testing don't go
>together.

What Nappy game do you betatest Mario?

O.
 
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Giftzwerg <giftzwerg999@NOSPAMZ.hotmail.com> wrote in
news:MPG.1cab4e027a2a81ac98a235@news-east.giganews.com:

> In article <1111587414.098013.181830@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com>,
> eddysterckx@hotmail.com says...
>
>> Well, at least they're working on it - which can't be said for every
>> engine ...
>
> Quite true. But - speaking for myself - simple fairness dictates that
I
> hammer Matrix as willingly as I do HPS in cases where this very
> important aspect of game design is (initially...) overlooked.

No discussion there - fair is fair - it's not as if they're trying to
cover-up the AI problems, and they've outlined what they're going to do
about it - which suffices for me for now.

> I've seen very, very few games where the AI *attacks* well (TACOPS,
> HTTR, KP/BIN/etc.), but it's essential that an AI provide at least the
> performance of a "persistent vegetative state" in terms of defending.

I'll use that "persistent vegetative state" as a yardstick for
determining AI strenght in the future :)

Greetz,

Eddy Sterckx
 
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> What Nappy game do you betatest Mario?
>
> O.


Well, this game that Eddy have spoken about, it's called Crown of Glory.

Anyway, I will seriously beta test this game and I will try to be useful
because to devs, first I must read manual, I've already downloaded one
version but it's already not latest (urgh). I started game today but I will
not tell anything, anyway I don't know if I can and what is under NDA and
what is not :eek:) So, for now no inside stories - I will see what can be said
in near future... (no worries Eddy some stories will be leaked but when devs
allow it, that's PR :)

Oleg, if you want you can also betatest this game, I think that you can
betatest any game now but I don't know how you find time for all those
games.


Mario
 
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sorry folks for typos, I was distracted...
 
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> - Silent Hunter 3 - didn't play, but I plan to, at least to
> write a review (perhaps I fall in love, perhaps not, who knows)

I am in temptation to buy this game. I've heard that it is wonderful,
getting review scores of 100 and such :eek:)
BTW, yes it is true that you cannot walk alone in the night in the Rumanian
town of Constanza (on the Black Sea coast) - anyone with a suicide
tendentions can try it - BUT! - even with all this poverty Rimanians have
made a magnificent game called Silent Hunter 3 - developers are all some
kind of doctors for this or that. This is wonderful, now don't get me wrong,
I don't say that poverty is or rich conditions are good for this or that but
I'm glad that games are coming out also from some God forgotten countries
like Rumania also :eek:)))

That's also cool, so maybe I'll buy this game (I don't like simulations and
last sim that I liked was MicroProse' M1 Tank Platoon (1) on Amiga...
Kaboom, soun of tank gun was really cool on Amiga!


Mario
 
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On Thu, 24 Mar 2005 01:46:26 +0100, "Bloodstar"
<george.washington@microsoft.com> wrote:

>kind of doctors for this or that. This is wonderful, now don't get me wrong,
>I don't say that poverty is or rich conditions are good for this or that but
>I'm glad that games are coming out also from some God forgotten countries
>like Rumania also :eek:)))

Poverty has nothing to do with it. UBI is not unique among game
developers in opening studios in Eastern Europe. There are literally
countless game development studios in Czech Rep, Russia, Poland,
Romania, Hungary and even in Croatia. Eastern Europe is in some
aspects eldorado for game developers because

a) "development costs" (read: developer's wages) are lower than
in USA or West Europe, perhaps higher than in India, but India does
not have "gaming culture" that East Europe has
b) East European schools have (or had :eek:)) excellent curriculum
(sp?) in mathematics, physics and other related sciences, that are
foundation for every good computer programmer.
c) For military sims, like Silent Hunter, LOMAC or Il-2 - East
Europe is certainly more "natural" than India or other low-cost IT
areas.

So UBI decided to give SH3 job to their Bucharest studio and
there's absolutely nothing strange in this move. Some hardcore SH fans
were suspicious at first, but this proved unfounded as by all accounts
SH3 team did a great job, much better than US based Ultimation did
with SH2 (though I'll always have a sweet spot for Ultimation,
development team I loved, and that gave me lots of fun, but didn't
have enough luck to survive).

Lead devs in the Bucharest team are knowledgable about WW2 subs
too, and know their history.

Oleg
 
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> Poverty has nothing to do with it. UBI is not unique among game
> developers in opening studios in Eastern Europe. There are literally
> countless game development studios in Czech Rep, Russia, Poland,
> Romania, Hungary and even in Croatia. Eastern Europe is in some
> aspects eldorado for game developers because
>
> a) "development costs" (read: developer's wages) are lower than
> in USA or West Europe, perhaps higher than in India, but India does
> not have "gaming culture" that East Europe has
> b) East European schools have (or had :eek:)) excellent curriculum
> (sp?) in mathematics, physics and other related sciences, that are
> foundation for every good computer programmer.
> c) For military sims, like Silent Hunter, LOMAC or Il-2 - East
> Europe is certainly more "natural" than India or other low-cost IT
> areas.
>
> So UBI decided to give SH3 job to their Bucharest studio and
> there's absolutely nothing strange in this move. Some hardcore SH fans
> were suspicious at first, but this proved unfounded as by all accounts
> SH3 team did a great job, much better than US based Ultimation did
> with SH2 (though I'll always have a sweet spot for Ultimation,
> development team I loved, and that gave me lots of fun, but didn't
> have enough luck to survive).
>
> Lead devs in the Bucharest team are knowledgable about WW2 subs
> too, and know their history.

Oleg, you missed my point. I know all this what you are saying, and why you
say UBI when it's Ubi Soft ? ;)
BTW, I had excellent relantion with Ubi Soft in the past (in fact one of
best relationship was with them) and I knew long time ago about their studio
in Bucharest. Back to the point of course that poverty is not directly
linked with programming or design talent in Bucharest and of course that Ubi
Soft could maybe made this game even in China (they have office everywhere,
and lot's of stuff).
I used word poverty in clumsy way, making something strange which is not in
fact.

Well, in fact game industry is becoming like Hollywood but better Hollywood.
We have EA and Activision with dollar muscle to push their product in retail
and we have Paradox or Matrix or Battlefront who smartly choosen to ignore
retail and survive and in fact get their dolar and not pay two to the sharks
out there. And then give it to retail after it is sold online. I like that.
and in fact my point was that I like fact that software is coming from
Rumania also, be it strange or not. Capitalism is coming in small door also,
nothing strange, but that was not possible in '80s or early '90's. That was
my point, so it was nothing that happened over night. I just applaud Ubi
Soft and their studio in Rumania, of course that money went in and that
without money they would maybe sell their kidneys and not programm Silent
Hunter III. I say MAYBE. Now, that's just semi-ironical talk. And naturally,
$ is going where knowledge and know how is present, if it is not profitable
or not possible/happening in California, tomorrow will happen in Ploesti or
Cairo. And hail to that, I say great - you see that's really caring for
world from my side haha. :)

Now, that's just my thought process, who don't undestand, better to move
along then to judge wrong. :eek:)



Mario