Replies: 190 (Who?), Viewed: 19417 times.
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Theorist
#76 Old 25th May 2014 at 11:36 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by SimGuruGraham
Don't worry about posting honest feedback or constructive criticism... I welcome and appreciate it. There are always things we can do in the studio to improve, and players do influence the direction we take things. One of the things I enjoy the most about my job is being an advocate for our players and taking your suggestions back to the team (notice how the teeth textures were updated recently? yup... fan's comments influenced that).

I personally have two pet peeves which makes me drawn to topics like this like a moth to flame.
1) The term "lazy developers". I've worked on different games for different companies in this industry, and lazy is never a word I would use to describe the efforts that members of development teams give.
2) The idea that something is "easy" to add to a game. Thinking something is easy or difficult to add is usually completely missing the point. Instead it's a matter of complexity and time. Further, there's almost no correlation between something being "easy" to do in real life, compared to being "easy" to make happen in a game. Things that are actually "hard" to add to a game typically involve advancements in tech, which isn't really what people are asking for most of the time.

That said, I reflect on what I knew before I worked in the industry and what I've learned sense then and I understand where these sentiments come from.


I agree. I think we, as a community, should be a little more chilled out with it. It comes from a place of frustration or anger for whatever reason, but it's still a group of people working their asses off to hit a deadline while doing the most they possibly can to put together an amazing game. It's seeing people like you (and a couple other Gurus that have interacted here and on the official forums) with passion and a lot of consideration for what the players want/ask for, it gives me hope.

I don't know how many other developers go on forums and do reach out and talk to the community. Heck, I know a Minecraft dev went and ripped into a Minecraft mod dev publicly on reddit, saying that mod devs as a whole need to "learn to code better". The audacity to criticize a chunk of that community who work their asses off and likely contributed a large amount to the game's success. We could be in much worse shape, that's for sure!
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Forum Resident
#77 Old 25th May 2014 at 11:51 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwi_tea
A lot of the problems with TS3 were deeper and more fundamental than scripting mods like (most of) Twallan's could touch.


Not really. Several fundamental bugs were fixed by EA, but look at all the XML tuning mods out there that fix unbalanced gameplay and incorrectly tuned values. Stopping your sims from playing with the sprinkler and drinking coffee for the 50th time is just not what I call a good game experience. EA hardly cares.
Twallan never bothered with such low level tuning problems, he (and other modders too) found numerous fixes and workarounds for totally fixable issues. If Nraas Overwatch grinningly reports that 1200 unnecessary cars have been removed from my game, what does that make me think? It makes me think that EA hardly cares.
I have read some parts of the script code and there are in fact bits that are simply incorrect and could be fixed. These are bugs you can point your finger at. For example Bodyweight and fitness values get inherited correctly in one part of the code, another part of the code then overwrites the values with bogus.
Did EA ever get in touch with Twallan or the modding community in general to encourage them to submit code fixes? Not to my knowledge - if it sells it ain't broke.

I find it very understandable that players get frustrated with EA when they roll out expansion after expansion but do not maintain the existing game. Makes you think if any of them has ever really played the game for more than 2 hours.

Find my Mods: Here at MTS, over at Simlogical
Field Researcher
#78 Old 25th May 2014 at 11:52 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Honeywell
You don't have the right to take someone elses work without compensating them for it and then spout some self indulgent BS excuse about consumer rights to justify it.


No but I do have the right to receiving what I paid for and to honest advertisement. I'm not getting either.
Alchemist
Original Poster
#79 Old 25th May 2014 at 11:58 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by TanookiMark
What does the number of voice actors has anything to do with the quality of the game? Having 70 voice actors doesn't make your game superior lol.
Just saying the number of sound files says literally nothing

Funny you should say this consdering you used it in your own argument here:
Quote:
Originally Posted by TanookiMark
Yhea and the Sims 4 has over half a million sound files back in september which could be even more including the music... Afterall the 70 voice actors of Skyrim are speaking their native language, while the Sims voice actors need to speak and train a non existing language which is quite a big difference huh?
http://simsvip.com/2013/09/30/sims-...s-sounds-files/
Field Researcher
#80 Old 26th May 2014 at 12:50 AM Last edited by TanookiMark : 26th May 2014 at 2:14 AM.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Original_Sim
Funny you should say this consdering you used it in your own argument here:

*sigh* read page 2
Lab Assistant
#81 Old 26th May 2014 at 12:53 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by SimGuruGraham
Don't worry about posting honest feedback or constructive criticism... I welcome and appreciate it. There are always things we can do in the studio to improve, and players do influence the direction we take things. One of the things I enjoy the most about my job is being an advocate for our players and taking your suggestions back to the team (notice how the teeth textures were updated recently? yup... fan's comments influenced that).


Is there any chance that the eyelashes will change to something more in line with what we have in TS3, rather than the throwback of TS2 lashes?

MUMBLER! Seriously, I cannot understand a word you're saying! .... Willy Wonka, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Theorist
#82 Old 26th May 2014 at 1:03 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by SimGuruGraham
Don't worry about posting honest feedback or constructive criticism... I welcome and appreciate it. There are always things we can do in the studio to improve, and players do influence the direction we take things. One of the things I enjoy the most about my job is being an advocate for our players and taking your suggestions back to the team (notice how the teeth textures were updated recently? yup... fan's comments influenced that).

I personally have two pet peeves which makes me drawn to topics like this like a moth to flame.
1) The term "lazy developers". I've worked on different games for different companies in this industry, and lazy is never a word I would use to describe the efforts that members of development teams give.
2) The idea that something is "easy" to add to a game. Thinking something is easy or difficult to add is usually completely missing the point. Instead it's a matter of complexity and time. Further, there's almost no correlation between something being "easy" to do in real life, compared to being "easy" to make happen in a game. Things that are actually "hard" to add to a game typically involve advancements in tech, which isn't really what people are asking for most of the time.

That said, I reflect on what I knew before I worked in the industry and what I've learned sense then and I understand where these sentiments come from.



I just personally want to state that I have every respect for you and your team and any other staff who work very hard to make this or any other Sims game. But it seems very clear to me that whoever is controlling the purse strings at EA is not willing to spend the amount of money needed to make such a difficult-to-create simulation game, one that doesn't cut corners at every turn at any rate.

Which brings us to why I believe this thread was started in the first place; speculation on whether another company could do a better job at it. I have a love/hate relationship with TS3 because I do love it but hate that it's a broken, disjointed mess that requires me to use mods to play it.

So after feeling like I got burned crispy on TS3, it's a little difficult to believe that another company could much worse.

¢¾ Receptacle Refugee ¢¾ ~ Where are we going, and why am I in this handbasket!? ~
Laura's Legacy
Field Researcher
#83 Old 26th May 2014 at 1:08 AM Last edited by TanookiMark : 26th May 2014 at 1:23 AM.
Yhea but seriously why would you choose Bethesda for a life simulator? It would be the same as asking Nintendo to make a first person shooter. Yes they are both game developers but they don't have the knowledge. I keep asking my self where the old Maxis is.
Test Subject
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26th May 2014 at 2:03 AM
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Test Subject
#84 Old 26th May 2014 at 2:08 AM
Skyrim has two fixed age stages: children and grown-ups (which may look like young adults, adults or elderly people, but in terms of gameplay don't differ). Nobody gets born or ages up in game. The average character has a daily schedule they ALWAYS stick to, unless they are agents in an active quest. That means they get up at the same time every day, perform the same tasks at the same time and place every day, only to finally go bed again at a fixed time. They have very limited interaction and conversation options with your character.
A few characters are slightly more complex in so far as they can be found wandering the map, but any unique dialogues and interactions in game are quest-bound and scripted.
Even with the Hearthfire add-on, you cannot freely build houses, but only put together some pre-designed elements. You can only marry once (even if your partner dies later), only adopt children - and no more than a maximum of two - who never grow up, and your interaction with your spouse and children is limited to a few additional sentences that are being spoken, and even fewer interactions.

A Sim is so much more complex than that. Not only do they age, but their "lives" are actually random in so far that you cannot predict what's going to happen to the Sims you're not controlling. They might break up with their partner or lose their jobs or have children, and they might go to the beach today, the park tomorrow and the museum the day after... Not to mention that you have dozens of different diialogue and nteraction options at any time.
I love both the Sims and Skyrim, and enjoy playing both games greatly, but you can hardly compare the two. If NPCs in Skyrim were only half as complex as Sims, the computer requirements would be outlandish.

There certainly are questions worth asking EA / Maxis, and I think a more open dialogue between developers and fans might help increase the quality of future installments of the franchise. But just picking a game which only superficially resembles the Sims at best and claiming that a different developer would deliver a much better result is pretty naive, when they have in fact never done a life simulator.
Inventor
#85 Old 26th May 2014 at 2:33 AM
The Sims games need to be made by people who are pretty well adapted to simulation type games, rather than RPGs, as they are completely different genres. Simulator game makers know what sells and they understand (well used to) what players actually want in their game. I don't think Bethesda listens to their player base much... They know what sells when it comes to RPG type games, and they milk their money cow dry with basically every game they release. It would be interesting to see them do a sims type game, but looking back, Fallout 3 and Skyrim and even the new Wolfenstein game have so many similar elements that they would probably find a way to make it RPG-ey
Instructor
#86 Old 26th May 2014 at 2:37 AM
I think the thing of the thread is not Skyrim Vs. Sims or How it's devved or logic as all that can be changed. Just because there is one way a person has done a game doesn't mean they can't turn around and do the whole other aspect.

I think the main thing is what if The Sims was developed by a company that actually cares about fans rather than do whatever Graham is trying to do to shut the masses up. To me, no game company is ever perfect and sometimes, majority rules, but the main thing is that EA doesn't seem to give two shits about the fans. It's clearly evidenced no matter where you look in The Sims, you see the lack of care in everything done. The EPs are rushed out buggy messes of games with illogical and improper coding yet are overpriced to hell, for what? The SP's seem to be including less and less in the way of content but the prices seem to be up there. Store worlds, and Store content Cost as high as an EP/SP on sale yet offer little in way of addition to the game (age groups/Genders left out in clothing, missing pieces of sets, buggy premium content, broken or missing stencils, etc.). The patches, while supposedly doing something to fix the game only seem to be a bandage on a gaping flesh wound. Has anyone tried EA's black hole of Customer service? it's a carousel ride! There is no care coming from EA, which leaves many a fan cold and feeling shafted.

The main thing is not if Bethesda did Sims. It's about if a company who seems to care more about the fans would do the sims better than what is currently given to us.

(◐ω◑)
What kind of Sim loves like this?
(◐ω◑)
Mad Poster
#87 Old 26th May 2014 at 2:54 AM
I stayed out of the conversation on purpose because I am angry about how Sims 3 turned out, when my belief in the producers had been stomped on, ridiculed, and burnt to a crisp. The fear that we will have a group of developers like when Sims 3 came out, people that made the fans feel like their opinions didn't matter. When the outcry against the direction Sims 3 was going after World Adventures was released and Ambitions turned the game goal based, hardly any real interactions between the sims and children was completely forgotten about with limited gameplay, it felt like the producers were telling us "we are taking Sims in a new direction, don't like it too bad" and glad those people are not there anymore. One had the nerve to say they don't play the toddler and children stages so they didn't think it was important to create anything for that age. Really?! That burns me up because I do like playing all ages, I loved having generational stages and interactions between families, building a relationship is very important to me.

While I appreciate Graham coming in and reading the concerns here and at the official forums, taking account what players want do deserve a lot more respect for them and I do appreciate it. Then that fear of how the Sims are being handled with game play, will all ages be included in a normal function, for example, the children being able to water the garden while the parents harvest or play the piano and violin to start off a musical genius or will this series be focused on adults only because they find those age stages unimportant and ignore them? While going on tomb adventures, the children could hold a flashlight or find little gems/artifacts to help the parents further their goals, I would have appreciated that. Not trying to milk the fans and give up half-assed, rushed and unfulfilling objects in the store when it could have been in an EP and integrated properly. I want a well rounded out game, CAS is great and all, but it doesn't determine my interest being peaked and it will not calm my fears.

All I can do is wait until EA thinks it is OK to show us what the game will offer. Trying to find another company to give us the love that Sims 1 and 2 did is rather unrealistic to me, not when past games had all the things we loved playing, if we are playing house or obtaining goals. I am waiting and I will be watching. I want my first love in video games back. I miss it.

Resident member of The Receptacle Refugees
Let's help fund mammograms for everyone. If you want to help, Click To Give @ The Breast Cancer Site Your click is free. Thank you.
Field Researcher
#88 Old 26th May 2014 at 3:12 AM Last edited by ijustneedsomeeyes : 26th May 2014 at 3:43 AM.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SimGuruGraham
To compare what Skyrim does to what Sims does shows a clear misunderstanding of what the technical demands of the two games are.


Regrettably, that's true...there is a lot more going on during a typical Sims playing than there is in a typical [insert shooter/fighting/tower defense/RPG/etc. here] playing, because the Sims is just that much bulkier.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShigemiNotoge
Well then I'll tell this straight to his face. I'd rather give my money to the people working hard here to make the game playable than give it to people who couldn't be payed to make it playable in the first place :\


Oh my god, you did not just do that! But then again, I'm lucky to have not experienced the pain that is Sims 3 that so many experienced here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by emeraldmoon
its likely that the people in charge of developing the Sims 4 have goals that conflict with the people actually working on it.


If that part is true, then in an ideal world, weeds would be pulled from the garden, if you know what I mean. As in, replace those guys not listening to the developers!

As to voice actors, I think maybe 6 is a good number (like in Sims 2), but no more than 10. Do you realize how unnecessarily bulky the game would be with all those sound files? As for the world thing...good god. I think for a game like Sims, that thing would crash even the best desktop PCs!

When noregen hacks are not enough...you know what you must do. (RIP Mootilda , pay your respects in the thread and in her guestbook.)
Test Subject
#89 Old 26th May 2014 at 3:49 AM
In terms of who could develop a better life simulation, I honestly cannot think of any company right now - not because it's impossible, but because nobody is doing anything that's similar enough to draw any conclusions from already existing games. And to take elements out of other games and "paste" them into The Sims doesn't work either. Sure I'd love to have a gigantic neighbourhood with several hundred NPCs, but (as I pointed out in my previous post in this thread) existing games which offer that operate under very different circumstances.

So I think the questions should be rather why people feel cheated, and what could be done to make The Sims games the way they want it. I, for example, am very much looking forward to The Sims 4, but think that not including Create-A-Style or something similar is a step backwards. One of the best features of Sims 3 is that I am not stuck with anyone's taste in clothes, and that I can easily adapt colour schemes. And now in Sims 4 I am suddenly supposed to go back to pre-defined colours and bloated download folders due to the recolours I have to download if I want something other than what the game ships with?
More so than the fact that apparently it is not in the game - at least not in CAS -, it bothers me that I don't know why the developers chose not to include this feature again. I'd accept it much more easily if I knew there was a good reason behind it, but the way it is, I can only speculate and feel that EA doesn't really know how important the inclusion would have been for many players.

Personally, I'd just really appreciate more of a dialogue instead of being subjected to a PR machinery where communication appears to flow mainly in one direction: from the developing company to prospective customer.
Site Helper
#90 Old 26th May 2014 at 4:40 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by jje1000
Of course, that's not a life simulation. That's a city builder.
Lab Assistant
#91 Old 26th May 2014 at 5:31 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by SimGuruGraham
(notice how the teeth textures were updated recently? yup... fan's comments influenced that).

This makes me kind of sad. There are tousand of things players want and the only example you can mentoined are the teeth??

We just wanted some details, but not a completely diffrent texture. The new ones look like little dirty Sims 3 Teeth.
Instructor
#92 Old 26th May 2014 at 6:09 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Manueldog
This makes me kind of sad. There are tousand of things players want and the only example you can mentoined are the teeth??

We just wanted some details, but not a completely diffrent texture. The new ones look like little dirty Sims 3 Teeth.


I agree that the old teeth looked better. The new ones look oddly small to me. And the giant swath of visible gum is not so appealing either.
Retired
retired moderator
#93 Old 26th May 2014 at 6:09 AM Last edited by kiwi_tea : 26th May 2014 at 6:22 AM.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consort
Not really. Several fundamental bugs were fixed by EA, but look at all the XML tuning mods out there that fix unbalanced gameplay and incorrectly tuned values. Stopping your sims from playing with the sprinkler and drinking coffee for the 50th time is just not what I call a good game experience. EA hardly cares.
Twallan never bothered with such low level tuning problems, he (and other modders too) found numerous fixes and workarounds for totally fixable issues. If Nraas Overwatch grinningly reports that 1200 unnecessary cars have been removed from my game, what does that make me think? It makes me think that EA hardly cares.
I have read some parts of the script code and there are in fact bits that are simply incorrect and could be fixed. These are bugs you can point your finger at. For example Bodyweight and fitness values get inherited correctly in one part of the code, another part of the code then overwrites the values with bogus.
Did EA ever get in touch with Twallan or the modding community in general to encourage them to submit code fixes? Not to my knowledge - if it sells it ain't broke.

I find it very understandable that players get frustrated with EA when they roll out expansion after expansion but do not maintain the existing game. Makes you think if any of them has ever really played the game for more than 2 hours.


Can't disagree with a word you say, and it is a sharp reminder that EA just doesn't seem to care about technical *quality*. It's not just "adding stuff" people get upset about, "fixing stuff" either happened at an insanely glacial pace or it never happened at all, which always left we wondering if EA is some sort of Kafka-esque Bureaucracy of Doom.

CAW Wiki - A wiki for CAW users. Feel free to edit.

GON OUT, BACKSON, BISY BACKSON
Instructor
#94 Old 26th May 2014 at 6:18 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwi_tea
...which always left we wondering if EA is some sort of Kafka-esque Bureaucracy of Doom.


I feel like you've hit the nail on the head there. Before a game is even put into active development bureaucracy decides what is important to focus on and what isn't. Back in the purely Maxis days, they decided that what was important was making a great game, and we got a great game. With the EA suits what's prioritized is "optimal monetization", and so we get blatant money grab after money grab that alienates players more than appeals to them. The problem is skewed priorities at the top, not the game devs.

Blaming the individual developers for the end result is like blaming the foot-soldiers for the actions of the Emperor. Completely misguided and lacking respect for how much work the day-to-day folks put in on a regular basis.
Lab Assistant
#95 Old 26th May 2014 at 6:47 AM
idtaminger, nothings gets me off more than a perfectly worded post. Thank you. I'll tell my hubby to take the night off.
Scholar
#96 Old 26th May 2014 at 6:48 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Soapsim1
There are fair criticisms to be made against Skyrim, but this is not one of them. Go talk to a random Khajiit, Dunmer and Imperial. There, three voice actors already. What kind of argument is this when it comes to sims anyway? I hear more sims with the same voice than I hear identical Imperial soldiers.
It doesn't count when you mod the game to have more VAs than the 2 it shipped with!

Heaven's Peak, my CAW WIP
Field Researcher
#97 Old 26th May 2014 at 7:59 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by TanookiMark
What does the number of voice actors has anything to do with the quality of the game? Having 70 voice actors doesn't make your game superior lol.
Just saying the number of sound files says literally nothing


Little, which is why I responded to someone using the number of voice actors in Skyrim as the reason why Bethesda should not attempt to create a life simulation game. Also Skyrim is not "my" game. I still play Sims 2 more often than Skyrim, which is why I am on this forum. I simply felt the need to argue some of the arguments that have been brought up as to why Skyrim or Bethesda would suck because my experience is much more positive. As SimsGuruGraham said, I don't think people working on either The Sims or Skyrim are lazy. I don't believe they're just sitting on their asses all day staring at the ceiling and playing Angry Birds on their phone. I think the more important difference between, in this case, EA and Bethesda is how much time these developers are given to create the game they are working on. Both results have bugs, but when I look at Skyrim and its DLC I have the impression a lot of time and work went into it and I can see that effort has been put into giving each dungeon their own hint of a story. When I see the similar puffy faces of Sims 3 sims my only thought is "eh". And when I saw the Katy Perry stuff pack my mind exploded. I honestly thought at first that it was a parody, made by someone who intended to mock EA's series of stuff- and expansion packs to milk the franchise. Nope, it was real. I even saw a "collector's edition" of it in a store.
So, yes, right now I would be more willing to try a Sims game made by Bethesda than Sims 4. At least with Bethesda I can believe that they wanted to make a game that I, the player and consumer, would enjoy playing as well (except with ESO now... ). With EA all I see is "GIVE ME YOUR MONEY! MOAR! HERE, MOAR STORE CONTENT! BUY!"

Saying that Skyrim only had children and adults or that building did not work as well as in The Sims is pointless. As others have said, Skyrim is an RPG and therefore has a completely different focus than The Sims, so using these kind of things as arguments as to why Bethesda would be unable to pull it of are moot. Unfortunately we won't know how well they would do it unless they try it, and I doubt that will happen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fentonparkninja
It doesn't count when you mod the game to have more VAs than the 2 it shipped with!


LOL, you got me! I voiced the rest of the characters for the sake of variability. Eventually I got tired of it and gave the remainder of the NPCs the sound files of Mrs. Crumplebottom and the university cheerleaders.
Field Researcher
#98 Old 26th May 2014 at 8:40 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saturnfly
I don't think Bethesda listens to their player base much...


You're saying that like it's a bad thing.

If Bethesda had listened to their fans, 90% of the weapons in Skyrim would be spears. And if Maxis had listened to their fans, Sims games would be so realistically boring they'd make the interactive loading screens from TS3 seem GOTY worthy.

Fans don't know what they want, that's why they are just fans and not game designers. Anyone can come up with game ideas, not everyone can come up with good game ideas.
One horse disagreer of the Apocalypse
#99 Old 26th May 2014 at 8:48 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by TanookiMark
Yhea but seriously why would you choose Bethesda for a life simulator? It would be the same as asking Nintendo to make a first person shooter. Yes they are both game developers but they don't have the knowledge. I keep asking my self where the old Maxis is.


No game company had the knowledge before they tried it! Even Will Wright didn't know how to make Sims at one point in his professional development!

"You can do refraction by raymarching through the depth buffer" (c. Reddeyfish 2017)
Instructor
#100 Old 26th May 2014 at 9:24 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inge Jones
No game company had the knowledge before they tried it! Even Will Wright didn't know how to make Sims at one point in his professional development!
Thats why he did Little Computer People.

Anyways, it's difficult making games regardless but certain companies like to stick with what they know and a particular genre. Bethesda is one of those companies. A good example of when this hurts development is the Halo RTS game which was not fantastic or certainly not as great as their shooters.

On the flip side, I'm sure Bethesda could tolerate it and do something with it. They're full of very intelligent people and could probably do it, it'd just be a HUGE challenge for them and way outside of their comfort zone.

... then again, you could argue Fallout 3 was outside of their comfort zone too.
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