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rcryniak

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  1. rcryniak

    The future of grid

    I absolutely agree with you on the AI being BCM's.  (Love the acronym btw.)  That's the single most asinine aspect of GAS.  As if real live racers try to smash into each other constantly on purpose.  Right.  It's neither good game design, nor a realistic simulation.  I get aggressive driving, getting in your way (however annoying), occasional tapping, sure... but being BCM's?  Not cool. That said, it's not the programmers that decide whether or not something goes in the game.. that's the product managers and designers/architects... aka the powers that be  They're the ones that are smoking something funky, and it wasn't a good batch.  There's probably also inter-office politics involved, but I'm guessing based on experience in other settings.  Sadly, the development community has by and large become every bit as corporate as every other part of western civilization... with the exception of maybe Valve, the days where game developers that are truly passionate about their craft to the point where they look forward to going to work every day just to make something awesome are long gone.  To most, now it's just a job.  (Though not all.)  Personally, I'm holding out on hope that other developers like myself still do exist and we'll see a new era of great content for all platforms where the devs are more concerned about quality than their position or salary... with outfits like Kickstarter and Steam Green Light opening the playing field to smaller companies, that's a really strong possibility.  Perhaps they exist at Codemasters... but if so, then the PTB there need to let their team's passion shine so we can all benefit from top notch everything, not just a few things.
  2. rcryniak

    GRID Autosport Feedback

    Honestly, I think on the whole you guys did a great job with GRID Autosport.  I'm a game developer myself, and as such I have an excellent perspective on the sheer magnitude of achievement you've accomplished with this title.  The simulation mechanics are really quite good and IMO very underrated by those accusing it of being "simcade".  HOWEVER... and I truly hope this is read by the "Codies" (and I truly hope that they fix the problem)... I find myself in the unusual position of generally really liking a title, and yet NOT feeling confident in recommending it to others, nor more inclined to purchase other Codemasters racing titles because of one gigantically glaring flaw. The reason that my my confidence in Codemasters is so shaken is because of the insanely horribly aggressive AI; particularly as employed in the Racenet Challenges' Time Trials.  Racing is a skill oriented sport. The conventional "random chance" element that works well in mere "games", has absolutely no place whatsoever in a sport/skill oriented title with such a strong simulation focus.  Even if GRID Autosport is "merely a game" from the Codemasters' point of view, they should follow the principles of quality game design which dictates that complete success should always be available and possible where the greatest level of skill is employed.  When events of random chance make it impossible to win a race with the highest accolades even when the most skillful driving is employed, I'd have to say it's just bad game design. (At least that one aspect of it.) If one were to argue that it's "realistic" because there's some aggression in real life racing, I'd have to reply that it is the high level of aggression that is both unrealistic and often merely frustrating, missing the mark where a challenging experience is desired, yet a fiendishly frustrating experience is delivered.  While it's true that real life racing does sometimes involve some minor aggression, particularly at certain levels (NASCAR, etc.), it's not nearly as frequent as it is in GRID Autosport, and is always very carefully executed in order to unnerve a driver; and never intended to cause fatal crashes (after all, there are laws and lawsuits to be concerned with)... and even then, the open use of aggression is quite controversial. To have AI drivers that are so aggressive that they repeatedly attempt to wreck the player's car (in some cases, several attempts within mere seconds)... where they'd be responsible for the repeated loss of human life were they put into real racecars, is just ridiculous.  It's even more ridiculous when such AI is employed in a Time Trial format where the player is trying to beat the times (or distances, rather) of other human drivers from around the world... especially when the overly aggressive AI drivers can literally and unrecoverably ruin a race no matter how skillfully the player drives, and do so over and over, race after race, forcing the player to restart dozens of times until they get "lucky" enough to not get beaten out of the possibility of a Platinum finish by the overly aggressive AI drivers.  This level of AI aggressiveness is inappropriate in this context, at best. If one were to argue that it takes skill to evade the AI's aggressions, I'd have to agree.  However, the game is (allegedly) based on Autosport... the game isn't called "Frogger" (last I checked!), so being forced to learn how to avoid needlessly aggressive AI that are literally trying to "kill you" (aka wreck your car) is just absurd.  And even then, if you do learn masterful defensive driving, most of the time, the "bad luck of bad AI drivers" simply makes it impossible to get Platinum every time you race... reserving such highest accolade for the fortuitous combination of skillful driving and sheer dumb luck. (At least on some tracks.)  Once success becomes impossible in any given situation without any fault on the part of the player/driver, but simply due to "luck of the draw", then you've failed at that aspect of quality game design.... and miserably so. Because of this, I honestly question how well the game designers and other powers that be at Codemasters understand their audience well enough to properly serve them, and if they really believe that such a high degree of randomness has any place whatsoever in a skill oriented title.  It's an issue of trust and confidence, that if unresolved, will in fact prevent me from purchasing other Codemasters racing titles in the future.
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