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What the interaction from codemasters could (and should) look like.

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So just like most companies, the guys over at Paradox Development Studio have enjoyed a Christmas holiday, and being based in Sweden, and it gets very dark in Sweden in winter, they have a longer one than most. 


Upon return however, they more than make up for a few weeks of silence by writing a developers diary containing more words than every word from Codemasters employees on this forum combined, 

And i wanted to share this with you guys, Especially @BarryBL
https://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/index.php?threads/euiv-development-diary-14th-of-january-2020.1307998/&utm_source=stcom-owned&utm_medium=social-owned&utm_content=post&utm_campaign=empe_eu_20200114_for_dd

This is a perfect example of a company that is:
-Dedicated towards its followers
-Ambitious and passionate where it concerns their games, 
-Tries to make money by making the game the best they can be, instead of by selling the same mediocre bug fest for years in a row
-Very keen on fixing every last bug and glitch with their games. 

This is also a perfect example of what interaction should look like. They tell us what they are working on, what direction they want to take, and even some personal opinions of the writer.
This is what we need to see cause as it stands we only know the Codemasters F1 devs as liars that are too scared to talk to the public.

All we get is a PR guy who takes weeks to write a post containing 5 points and looks to be in place just to keep the plebs at a distance and make it look like Codemasters cares.. The whole position being an affront to the people that actually hope that someday we'll get a Codemasters f1 game that isn't a ********. If there's anyone at Codemasters who still believes in the game Now would be the time to tell us why.

People are fleeing to Iracing left, right and center. 

Yesterday we had a league race, and after the hosts game crashed at the start of the formation lap the first time, we had to reset the lobby (again) 
Nearing the race conclusion in lap 21 everybody lost connection to steam without warning. 

There isn't a week going by without league races getting made impossible by the deplorable state of the game. 

If you want ANY person to buy the name game.. It's time to start showing you guys can fix things and why we should believe next one will be any different. 
Cause as it stands now it looks very much like you're well content delivering these glitchfests and prostituting the F1 license. 

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Hey Bicarda, go have a look at the setup guide thread if you haven't already. Would be interested to hear what you think...

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@Bicarda. I too am a big fan of paradox games, owning over 5 I believe and currently learning HOS 4! It's true all you say about the interaction with the community. Plus there is an excellent official wiki site with all the basics as well as advanced material covered. So once again this part of their customer service/feedback is impressive.

However I just want to mention the flip side of the coin especially recently with paradox, something I hope Codies NEVER copy. This is the rather cynical movement towards basic releases with essential game play as well as add on material included in dlc ONLY. For example my beloved Crusader Kings 2 is now free to play, in a very basic format, with so many dlcs available (don't have time to count right now but we'll over 20 plus numerous cosmetic as well such as unit models). Even the more recent HOS4 I am getting to love has a base game with rather important stuff like actual navy strategy NOT included and only available with paid DLC. I recommend people browse paradox on steam and work out the cost of owning any of their main games CK2, HOS4 and Europa Univalis with all the game play dlc as well. These are supposed to be the grandest of grand strategy games but so much of the grandness is not included in the base games. 

Anyway, the Paradox final products are amazing to me but I dislike their dlc strategy. Also it's worth mentioning that most of the products are hufe collections of spreadsheets and databases with a graphical interface added on to make the games fun as well as in depth. Nobody is going to complain about the performance of a 1943 German tank or the uniform of a Nepalese mountain trooper. In an F1 game there are so many heavily scrutinized car and track details that Codies have to get at least looking right so as not to suffer the wrath of the user base. As you say though, they can do WAY better with the communication and SHOULD do way better. If your game is deeply lacking in quality (which is true of recent Codies F1 games) then having a great relationship with your customers goes a long way to making people feel happy with their purchased product. I feel we have neither a great product or a respectful relationship with the dev team right now. Barry has certainly ironed out some of the creases and given us a little hope, but the feeling I am getting is that he is really just a way of further distancing us from the devs responsible for the finished product and patches. We used to throw rocks and flowers at Codies directly, now Barry stands in the way of our complaints and passes them on himself to the dev staff. This is actually INCREASING the distance between us and the game team. His contributions are welcome and I hope he stays around and enjoys his work as I'm sure the majority of us are impressed with his work, although maybe not that impressed with the role Codies have given him. I don't know Barry's physical work location but he SHOULD be in either the same room as the coding devs or an adjoining office. That way when a major complaint is bought up yet again (safety car!!) instead of an email to someones inbox he can actually pop his head round the divider and say HEY GUYS, WHAT'S THE ACTUAL LATEST ON XYZ? I need project info to relate to our customers. They are getting understandably irate! (There is nothing like an actual real dissenting voice in your ear to push for improvements!) 

If management have told told 'our' Barry not to talk to or interrupt the coding team directly and instead to only use written comms then I would be not at all BLEEP happy. 

On a side note as a possible suggestion, @BarryBL why not host a weekly race meet where your customers here can join with you in a invite only full race weekend? This would be a great way for you to experience live the way the game works or does not as well as enabling live comms via discord for example. The racing itself would not need to be serious lol. If at each successive weekly race meet just ONE issue from the previous meet was solved by a hot fix I'm sure we'd be very satisfied with the forward thinking involved. Basically each meet would be a test session with the participants filling in bug reports afterwards. Even if this was only done once a month this would be great and there would be no excuse for the devs not to releasea at least one major fix or patch a month then. Talk about live feedback! 

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Paradox also have about 100 employees, and having worked at many big and small companies in my time, it's a lot easier to do the sort of things that Paradox do when you're a small company and everyone literally knows everyone else.

Edited by scottishwildcat

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