Closing the contend development?

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Crush
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Closing the contend development?

Post by Crush » 22 Feb 2006, 19:24

Recently some members of the development team said at various occasions that they would like to hide the contend development from the public. I would like to discuss that topic in a dedicated thread to avoid any more off topic discussions at other places.


One argument that is often cited by the advocats of a closed contend development is that the open development of the game contend spoils the fun and the surprise for the players when they see the new things in development before they see them ingame.
But on the other hands noone is forced to read the developer forums, mailing list or irc channel. When people decide that they don't want spoilers it is easy for them to avoid them.

Another argument that i read quite frequently is that the developer forums would or could be flooded with so called "unimportant opinions" of uninvolved bystanders.
I am involved in the contend development for quite a while and i don't see a significant growth of posts from people who do not contribute to the project. And even if there would i don't see what would be wrong about it. We are making this game not for ourself but for the players. It is their taste we should try to appeal to. The feedback and insiration of our fan base can only help us to improve our work and to gain additional motivation. Even in the early stages of development of certain aspects the opinions of uninvolved people can help us to see if we are on the right track.
Some people might argue that the critique of people who are not involved in the development might not be as reliable as those of developers who are more experienced in game development and are more familiar with the vision of the whole project. But i believe that all the people who contribute to the project know very good who are the people who decide what will be released und whose opinions should be valued how much.

But my appreciation of feedback is not the main reason why i am against hiding the contend development from the public.

I think that everyone here agrees with me when i say that we are always in need of new contributors on all fields of development. Now please imagine that you are an amateur pixel artist, writer, musician or map designer who just played the mana world for the first time and you feel like something is missing. Something that you could contribute when you take some time. But before you start working you would for sure ask yourself:
"Are they maybe already working on what i would like to do?"
"Would i fit into the team?"
"Do they really need any help at all?"
At the moment you can just take a look into the contend development boards. You can see how we work together. You can easily see whats the current state of the development is, what we are working on and what stuff still needs to be done. It would be easy for you to just take one of the loose ends and say "Hi, i am XXX and i will see if i can make this working".

But now imagine the contend development would be closed. You wouldn't be able to answer the above questions yourself. You would have to track down and contact the one who is responsible for giving people access to the contend development. You wouldn't know how you would persuade him or her that you really can do something for the project and that you aren't just some curious gamer. You would be afraid that you could be rejected for some reason. I am sure that this psychological barrier would scare away many potential contributors who could help much in the development process.


Because of all these reasons i believe that it would have a big negative impact on quality and quantity of the produced contend when we close the contend development and that Linus law, which states that given a large enough beta-tester and co-developer base, almost every problem will be characterized quickly and the fix obvious to someone, should be applied to every aspect of open source projects and not only the sourcecode.
  • former Manasource Programmer
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Tenche
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Post by Tenche » 23 Feb 2006, 04:35

contend development? can u explain in 5 lines or less cause im not takeing the time to read all that lol
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Post by ktm » 24 Feb 2006, 13:27

In short, for those poor ADD cases like tenche:
Question: Hide new content from the players until it's actually -in the game-?
Pro: Players get surprised, and devs don't get bitched at while still working on it.
Con: No player feedback at all until everything's done.

My 2¢ would be, split non-graphics content off so the casual player doesn't get to see it (at the -very least-, move it into it's own subforum), but keep it open enough so those that are really curious can still see what's going on (like, at least have a somewhat recent version in cvs, or something like that).
Graphics stuff seem to work better with some occasional feedback, so I'd leave that part public.
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Post by Tenche » 24 Feb 2006, 15:29

Sweet sounds hot thanks for the explenation lol
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Post by Draicone » 27 Feb 2006, 08:38

Well, it makes sense to hide developement to some extent, but there should be a vast base of members with access to it at the very least, say 75% of the forums.
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Post by ElvenProgrammer » 27 Feb 2006, 09:44

Well a first step would be to close the topic to non registered users, so who plays only sometimes and is not really interested in development won't be aware of what it's being developed.
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Post by Rotonen » 27 Feb 2006, 23:14

Just to clarify myself once again:

I'm trying to think ~2 years ahead, this project WILL grow. I'm not demanding we do it "right now", I'm just asking in advance about the reception it would receive and the opinions of others in general (which I've been getting so far). This is not a matter about which decisions will be made anytime soon.
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AndyG314
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Not open source

Post by AndyG314 » 14 Mar 2006, 00:57

I think that having closed content developement is somewhat contrary to the ideas of open sourc software.
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Post by Platyna » 14 Mar 2006, 17:03

All content is on SVN, so what closing we are talking about?

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Post by Pajarico » 14 Mar 2006, 21:17

Platyna wrote:All content is on SVN, so what closing we are talking about?

Regards.
The content that is being discussed, not finished, that is not thoroughly thought...
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Post by Modanung » 14 Mar 2006, 22:23

The content that kills gameplay if people know about it.
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Post by Platyna » 15 Mar 2006, 00:26

Not finished content shouldn't be published to public audience. And it not defeats the open source philosophy on any way, since finished content is being released.

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Zuzanna K. Filutowska
[The rest of this signature was censored by TMWC's "Freedom" and "Free speech".]
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