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Direction for CM in devoloping F1 ... future releases

IanXIanX Member Unleaded
Dear CodeMasters,

Introduction:
The current release of your F1 racing game is showing some serious flaws, this you can not disagree with. While some enhancements to your product was released successfully, certain aspects still have not been fully developed and hinder your company in being able to claim this game release a success in the eyes of the hardcore gamer or F1 racing fan.  Online communities are having problems in various forms and single players are hamstrung by a issues that in a testing environment would mark it as a 50% failure. 

Reccomendations:
Firstly you will need to look at the project management style being utilised as this is the utmost pinacle of the development process, if this fails, so does all below it. Being an observer and unsure of the methodologies used, I will not comment whether that is the issue but simply state that if not already, you need to employ AGILE with Scrum weekly meetings. Simply put, this approach will galvanise the development team and you, the product owner, will be well aware of any issues before they become a problem.
The next level will have to be the testing regime, this is lacking in finding the most intrusive game errors before release, there can be no denying that F1 2017 was released with glaring obvious problems, the failure of one team not having any benefit from upgrades should have been discovered in testing, as every team should have been tested, not just one or a few as can only be assumed to be the case during your testing given you released with the problem existing. The online issues, again a testing environment would have found those most reported problems. In my experience most testing scripts are automated and pass, as they are written to prove aspects work, and do not actually test how a user may actually use the system, just that the release passes a test of code stability.

2018 and beyond:
Before any enhancements to the next years game,
1. sit down with current game and fix every error. Release as a patch -
2. use this for base of the 2018 game, adding the new drivers any car enhancements and track changes.
3. Create enhancements and if fully tested and ready for 2018 release then include them, do not give your customers another years broken release. 

Summary:
before remarking this isn't viable, remember most of your customers still own a flawed, if not outright broken F1 2016. That is our opinion, the customer, regardless of how proud you may be of your staffs efforts to release a game with so many working parts, your customer sees it differently. Meet the game from our perspective before denying our claim of broken.
Ask yourself, would you be happy with another purchase being left unrepaired, is this how F1 2017 will also be left? Codemasters owe it to the paying customer to fix, not just state, "oh but we have already moved onto next years release, buy that it will be better".  We already paid. You owe it to us. It is a simple case of your companies integrity in dealing with customers honestly.

thank you for your time. 
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Comments

  • steviejay69steviejay69 Member Pit Crew
    I'm going out on a limb here that patch 1.11 might surface before the eSports final. So, in around a fortnight. All we can do is cross fingers.
    You'll find me at apexonlineracing.com
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  • LilBrown47LilBrown47 Member Pit Crew
    I wouldn't mind if Codies used the 2018 season as a "filler year" just as they did with F1 2014 / F1 2015 back in the days if it means having a "solid" and "stable" release of F1 2019.

    They should seriously just focus on improving all the flaws and difficulties they have with their own engine before giving us another "bug infested" ~cashgrab~ entry into the well renowned F1 franchise.

    Also seeing as they did get another 3 years worth of licencing to produce more F1 games, this approach shouldn't be a deal breaker for their sales at all as i'd guess that most of our fella members and F1 fans wouldn't strongly oppose this either imho.


  • FRACTUREDFRACTURED Member, Drivers Champion
    Oh how I hate Agile methodology. Especially when dealing with external forces.

    SM "Okay guys everything's prepped and ready to go, great job"
    Legal: "Okay guys department of insurance has objected to one of the 20 changes, please pull all code for a future reslot"
    Me "AAARRRGGGHHHHH!!!!!!"
    You remember when you first came to my office? I asked you, "Do you want to be an eagle, or do you want to be a **** bird?" And you said "I want to be an eagle".
    You got to be what you say you're going to be, which you aren't.
    You got to do what you say you're going to do, which you haven't.
  • CaptainAustCaptainAust Member Co-Driver
    Directions for codemasters for developing future f1 games        DONT!!!
     (and yes, i know they have a new 3 year contract) 
  • Operator1Operator1 Member, Drivers Champion
    edited November 9
    No project management and/or software development methodology is a magic bullet capable of saving projects with conflicting and/or impossible constraints.

    The fact that most bugs/issues in most games can be fixed via post-launch patches proves problems could have been addressed pre-release if more time had been spent testing, troubleshooting, & fixing before launching.

    There are probably plenty of people in game companies who already know how to release better-quality games, but they're limited by constraints handed down from on high.

    The powers-that-be probably decided the impact on sales from releasing problematic/buggy games is negligible, so it's more profitable to avoid spending much on testing & fixing before launching...

    ...Why spend all those man-hours and delay starting the revenue stream when hundreds of thousands of consumers will still buy it anyway? Why invest even just 20% more in quality when it likely won't result in a corresponding increase in sales to offset/return that investment?

    Companies are not in business to create quality.
    They're in business to sell.
    Selling only works when people buy.
    It's become this bad because buyers continue funding it.
    Every purchase is a vote in favor of more.

    The only way this problem gets better is when it is no longer so profitable to release such buggy games - and the only way it stops being so profitable is for buyers to stop funding it.


    *Disclaimer: my comments are only my own musings, not 'speaking for others' or 'stating opinions as facts.'
    #NeverPreOrder. They listen to our money more than our requests & complaints. They'll continue selling whatever we continue buying. What we put up with, we end up with. If we want better, we have to stop throwing money at worse. A game's "success" is not measured by how much people play it & enjoy it, but by how many copies it sells & its media scores/ratings.

  • DeltaNiwaXDeltaNiwaX Member Unleaded
    What I thought is that you get all the F1 drivers when the 2018 line up is confirmed and get them to drive the **** out of the cars so then you can base the AI's driving mechanic on their driving style, now that would be fun to drive 
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  • kevinkirkkevinkirk Member Race Engineer
    you think these games and game engines are just a blank sheet of paper that you can write every word you can think of on it and thats, not reality. There is no such thing as fixing everything wrong with a game. That's impossible because game engines cant work perfectly and hardwear/softwear doesnt work like that. Every feature screws up another feature leaving  reality being the struggle to get every thing in the game to work as a whole the best it possibly can together with the least bugs. Also save your comments of me saying buggy games are OK. Thats not what i just said.
    Xbox one, controller
  • scottishwildcatscottishwildcat Member, Drivers Champion
    To most software companies, "major" bugs are crashes or bugs that cause data loss. Anything else is a lesser beast.
    Braked: the past tense of brake.
    Broke, brokenanything within reach when I hear racing gamers say 'broke' instead of 'braked'.
  • Operator1Operator1 Member, Drivers Champion

    To most software companies, "major" bugs are crashes or bugs that cause data loss. Anything else is a lesser beast.

    Indeed.

    "If it doesn't fail to start up, doesn't freeze/lock up, doesn't crash/shutdown, and doesn't result in data loss, then it's 100% functional."

     ...That can be the only standard some software is held to. Everything else can be trivialized to nothing more than a "wish list for enhancements."

    Ultimately, the only real standard is: will people buy it? If the answer is yes, then no other standards matter.


    *Disclaimer: my comments are only my own musings, not 'speaking for others' or 'stating opinions as facts.'
    #NeverPreOrder. They listen to our money more than our requests & complaints. They'll continue selling whatever we continue buying. What we put up with, we end up with. If we want better, we have to stop throwing money at worse. A game's "success" is not measured by how much people play it & enjoy it, but by how many copies it sells & its media scores/ratings.

  • Operator1Operator1 Member, Drivers Champion
    edited November 11

    Operator1 said:

    To most software companies, "major" bugs are crashes or bugs that cause data loss. Anything else is a lesser beast.

    Indeed.

    "If it doesn't fail to start up, doesn't freeze/lock up, doesn't crash/shutdown, and doesn't result in data loss, then it's 100% functional."

     ...That can be the only standard some software is held to. Everything else can be trivialized to nothing more than a "wish list for enhancements."

    Ultimately, the only real standard is: will people buy it? If the answer is yes, then no other standards matter.

    Thats so stupid. Thats like saying theres nothing wrong with a car with 4 flat tires.

    I completely agree... Yet somehow, there are a lot of people who will tell others to "stop complaining & being such an entitled, impatient hater" about those 4 flat tires


    *Disclaimer: my comments are only my own musings, not 'speaking for others' or 'stating opinions as facts.'
    #NeverPreOrder. They listen to our money more than our requests & complaints. They'll continue selling whatever we continue buying. What we put up with, we end up with. If we want better, we have to stop throwing money at worse. A game's "success" is not measured by how much people play it & enjoy it, but by how many copies it sells & its media scores/ratings.

  • kevinkirkkevinkirk Member Race Engineer
    Operator1 said:

    kevinkirk said:
    you think these games and game engines are just a blank sheet of paper that you can write every word you can think of on it and thats, not reality. There is no such thing as fixing everything wrong with a game. That's impossible because game engines cant work perfectly and hardwear/softwear doesnt work like that. Every feature screws up another feature leaving  reality being the struggle to get every thing in the game to work as a whole the best it possibly can together with the least bugs. Also save your comments of me saying buggy games are OK. Thats not what i just said.

    The old "perfection is impossible" defense is tired & irrelevant. Literally nobody is unreasonably demanding nothing less than total perfection. Just because something can't be perfect doesn't mean there's no feasible way for it to be better. That's all people want: better.

    I have read my comment 3 times and cant find the word perfection anywhere in it. OP talked about things that are not possible and i simply pointed out those things were indeed not possible.
    Xbox one, controller
  • kevinkirkkevinkirk Member Race Engineer
    Operator1 said:

    To most software companies, "major" bugs are crashes or bugs that cause data loss. Anything else is a lesser beast.

    Indeed.

    "If it doesn't fail to start up, doesn't freeze/lock up, doesn't crash/shutdown, and doesn't result in data loss, then it's 100% functional."

     ...That can be the only standard some software is held to. Everything else can be trivialized to nothing more than a "wish list for enhancements."

    Ultimately, the only real standard is: will people buy it? If the answer is yes, then no other standards matter.

    Thats so stupid. Thats like saying theres nothing wrong with a car with 4 flat tires.

    no thats the opposite of what he just said. He said the gameplay not being how you think it should be, or play  in a way you dont want it to, is very different from  a bug making the game broken. You cant call a game broken just because you dont want or like to play its gameplay.
    Xbox one, controller
  • Operator1Operator1 Member, Drivers Champion
    edited November 12

    kevinkirk said:
    I have read my comment 3 times and cant find the word perfection anywhere in it...

    kevinkirk said:
    ...There is no such thing as fixing everything wrong with a game. That's impossible because game engines cant work perfectly...


    *Disclaimer: my comments are only my own musings, not 'speaking for others' or 'stating opinions as facts.'
    #NeverPreOrder. They listen to our money more than our requests & complaints. They'll continue selling whatever we continue buying. What we put up with, we end up with. If we want better, we have to stop throwing money at worse. A game's "success" is not measured by how much people play it & enjoy it, but by how many copies it sells & its media scores/ratings.

  • IanXIanX Member Unleaded
    kevinkirk said:
    you think these games and game engines are just a blank sheet of paper that you can write every word you can think of on it and thats, not reality. There is no such thing as fixing everything wrong with a game. That's impossible because game engines cant work perfectly and hardwear/softwear doesnt work like that. Every feature screws up another feature leaving  reality being the struggle to get every thing in the game to work as a whole the best it possibly can together with the least bugs. Also save your comments of me saying buggy games are OK. Thats not what i just said.
    Ok so lets break this down....   You wish to rebuke me for my suggestion, thats ok, thats what forums are for, sharing of opinions. I didn't reply to anyone because it was actually addressed to CM, in an open forum letter.  Did I expect any repsonse? No, not at all, but I do know they would read it and it would be a point of discussion. How do I assume this? because I have worked for a large software development company, and I have sat on tech companies project working parties for systems development, so hence my comments on testing were based on my experiences.

    So then, here is my rebuke to your post - "you think these games and game engines are just a blank sheet of paper that you can write every word you can think of on it and thats, not reality."  ASSUMPTION on your part, and totally ignroed my remark in the testing section - " In my experience most testing scripts.." So I ASSUMED, you didnt read the whole thing, or went into this post with half baked concepts on my OP. Either way, you opened with total BS based on your perception. 

    Next:  "There is no such thing as fixing everything wrong with a game. That's impossible because game engines cant work perfectly and hardwear/softwear doesnt work like that."  Totally incorrect, they can, and could, IF and that is a big IF, they spent the time.  There are two major platforms they can get it 100% perfect, PS & XB, yes I agree the PC hardware/software compatibility will always have more bugs than the consoles.  When  bug is reported, you find the conflicting code and fix it.  Voila, errors can be fixed once identified.  You are confusing Software development ability to produce 100% error free products with the financial concerns of a company chooising not to spend the time once a bug is identified.

    Next ... "Every feature screws up another feature leaving  reality being the struggle to get every thing in the game to work as a whole the best it possibly can together with the least bugs."  Only if the testing regime is not actually testing usablity versus code stability. The code may run perfectly, until a person chooses an option the auto script test did not choose. This happens all the time, developers envisage a codes purpose, the user then selects a combo not thought of and bingo a bug appears. Code for any software are usually designed in modules, with cross connects for interactions, the biggest problem is those modules are usually designed in silo teams, tower teams, module based teams, whichever new trend term the business wants to call it, they are not designed in conjuction with each team, one is expecting the interaction point to complete the cross talk.  This is where most major bugs accor, due to lack of one thing, oversight, cross team pollination, or more importanlty, good project managment.

    As one other said, not a magic bullet, and that is correct, PM is only an organisation set up to maintan control of any short term business need, like developing a game, it has a start and an end date. It provides structure to decision making, timeline and budget oversight and accountability. It does improve many projects, it is why the entire PM industry is so successful, it works.

    Now, please, keep your assumptions about me to yourself, I never said I wanted it to work perfectly, I asked for the errors to be fixed, obviously ... the ones that have been identified to date. To suggest as you did and that I expect perfect code day 1, is just a ludicrous thought that you should have kept in your head, or least look the fool for writing in on the net.




  • path1337path1337 Member New Car Smell
    Imo 2018 liveries arent that important. You play F1 2017, right?
    And, for PC players, wait few months for 2018 mod :)
  • 1512marcel1512marcel Member, Drivers Race Engineer
    To most software companies, "major" bugs are crashes or bugs that cause data loss. Anything else is a lesser beast.

    I think there is a difference between software and games. But that's how you look at things. A game fullfills something else than software and has other expectations. So if a certain feature of a game doesn't meet the expectations or just doesn't work as promised what do we call that? Is CM handling issues according to your statement? I don't know. In my opinion game breaking issues should be handled as major bugs.
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