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News & Features Discussion  » General: A Master Beta Scorned

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62 posts found
  Enochi

Novice Member

Joined: 12/17/09
Posts: 12

12/01/11 12:07:28 PM#21

Personally im the opposite. I was the guy who never got in the betas and would end up buying the game the day it came out....to find it sucked balls. I really have enjoyed the new wave of betas that test one very important aspect that has ruined so many launch days and was not previously tested enough in the olden days. Stress Testing. In the SWTOR if you bothered to read any of the notes they left you will find that there was a relatively few that where allowed to truely beta test the game before they gave a beta weekend to everyone to do the stress testing. Hell they even staggered the join times for betaers so it could "more simulate a launch invite"


I know your trying to be negative in the Style of Yahtzee from Zero punctuation or Doug from the Nostalgia Critic but really you come across more as being a self absorbed whiner then humorous.


  maskedweasel

Tipster

Joined: 9/24/07
Posts: 7264

"Kids, try imagining how far the universe extends! Keep thinking about it until you go insane."

12/01/11 12:18:25 PM#22
Originally posted by marinrider
Originally posted by Ozmodan

I used to Beta test all the time.  I won't do it any more though.  The vast majority of Beta testers these days are not in the game to actually test it.  Their main purpose these days is to find all the exploits and loopholes they can find to give themselves the edge when the game starts.

About the only thing the developers get out of a beta like this, is a stress test on the server.  You can probably count on one hand the number of people who actually find problems and turn them in.

So yes, I completely agree with you Coyote.

Really?  A majority are just there to find exploints?  I think you have it a bit wrong.  Most testers are there to play the game to see if they like it, but not to actually test the game.  They are there to find out if they are going to want to buy it at launch.

 

I'm pretty sure zorv..eh ozmodan was in the beta.  I think he was aware of the real reason people were testing.

 

... well.. honestly most of them were in just so they could leak information to their buddies,  or,  barring that... tell their mailman about it.

"Loan me a Dragon I wanna see space"


  Mr.Coyote

Novice Member

Joined: 7/07/11
Posts: 34

12/01/11 12:18:40 PM#23

Originally posted by Enochi

I know your trying to be negative in the Style of Yahtzee from Zero punctuation or Doug from the Nostalgia Critic but really you come across more as being a self absorbed whiner then humorous.





 



  maskedweasel

Tipster

Joined: 9/24/07
Posts: 7264

"Kids, try imagining how far the universe extends! Keep thinking about it until you go insane."

12/01/11 12:23:02 PM#24
Originally posted by Mr.Coyote

 

^ thats a terrible picture of you Coyote.

"Loan me a Dragon I wanna see space"


  NURTA

Novice Member

Joined: 7/11/11
Posts: 21

12/01/11 12:25:41 PM#25

Originally posted by maskedweasel


Originally posted by Mr.Coyote






 






^ thats a terrible picture of you Coyote.



 


I don't know I'd say it's pretty spot on.  He's such a damn jesus freak.


  Mr.Coyote

Novice Member

Joined: 7/07/11
Posts: 34

12/01/11 12:35:16 PM#26

Originally posted by maskedweasel

^ thats a terrible picture of you Coyote.



 



  divmax

Novice Member

Joined: 4/28/05
Posts: 107

12/01/11 1:29:30 PM#27

@Coyote


Um, you are bitching about not getting into the Beta. Try, not getting to play the game at all thanks to Bioware's definition of "global launch" which excludes everyone not in North America or Western Europe. Despite every other MMO ever launched being able to launch truly globally...which I would know since I played a heck of a lot of them at launch.


Not that I am bitter...


  Agnostic42

Novice Member

Joined: 8/19/04
Posts: 322

12/01/11 1:55:23 PM#28

I have an unusual experience with the SW:TOR Beta stress test. I tested on the second weekend, played, gave very informative answers to all questions and surveys. I even found a few bugs and reported them. I took it seriously and had fun along the way.


I wasn't invited back, go figure.


I had to grab a key from this site, make a new Bioware account and submitted the key to be able to play on the new account just so I could play with my wife.


I submitted the key several days after my wife got her invite back, and it was on a completely new account so I know my new beta key had nothing to do with not being invited back.


Not that I'm bitter or anything...


This just backs up your statement.


In the old days I beta tested several new features for EQ, back when they would snail mail a disc to testers with what they wanted tested. That felt worthy of being called a true beta test, this was not even close. We were only there to break the servers, while that has a purpose that I can completely understand, why put in the damn surveys?


  Akais

Novice Member

Joined: 7/07/07
Posts: 267

12/01/11 2:26:15 PM#29

Completely agree with your assertions and sorry you didn't get an invite Coyote.


It really should be just an open beta at this point personally.


  Maelkor

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/20/05
Posts: 462

12/01/11 2:36:52 PM#30
Originally posted by Akais

Completely agree with your assertions and sorry you didn't get an invite Coyote.


It really should be just an open beta at this point personally.

The purpose of this last beta weekend of which I got to participate was two fold in my opinion. The primary reason for the test was to see what it wouuld be like on launch day and find out if they could handle it and what kind of procedures they would need when the inevitable happened and all of the servers get jammed with people trying to get in.

The second purpose which was almost as important as the first was probably to allow a large population of people into the game to see what the game is and from their end hoping their product is as good as they think it is spread a positive word about the game and generate good buzz for the final marketing push.

The last weekend beta had very little to do with game bugs and trying to break the game from that end. That is what they are relying on their smaller group of regular beta testers for.

 

In the end, however, unless you belong to a testing company or a guild known for being good beta testers(with an inside line into game developer offices) the chance you will get into a particular beta is completely random no matter how big your ego is. Game companies will typically bring in thousands of people to tens of thousands of people with no way to hand select individuals unless you fall into one of the above two categories. You are just a random number.

  BadSpock

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/21/04
Posts: 7683

Logic be damned!

12/01/11 3:29:17 PM#31

Open beta is just PR and stress testing.

Very little feedback is given and most of what is, is taken with a grain of salt by devs.

That's why they do closed beta and usually keep the closed beta going and seperate even during the open periods.

Why?

They actually screen closed beta apps and as such take their feedback and testing data more seriously.

 

Now Playing: D3:RoS, Watch Dogs
Looking Towards: Destiny

  Rabiator

Apprentice Member

Joined: 10/22/05
Posts: 358

12/01/11 4:16:31 PM#32
Originally posted by Paragus1

I remember back in the day, sometimes as a beta tester they would mail you actual CDs to install the client on.   Now it's a glorified free trial.

I've noted the same with some F2P MMOs. Currently War Of The Immortals.

The first difference to "classic" beta testing with NDAs and all that stuff was that I actually got an invitation mail without applying (I have an account for a different game of that company).

The second difference was that the game is already quite polished in terms of bugfixing. In two days of playing I noticed only one bug, and that was in word wrapping. Obvious enough that the devs must have seen it themselves, unless their English language skills are zero. Now the game mechanics are not really innovative, so the game may actually run on a mature engine, just with different models . But my point is that beta testing in the sense of checking the game mechanics seems to be redundant here. Which makes it more of a marketing beta.

The last "old school" beta testing I did was some years ago with Seed, an indie game that really needed the help of dedicated beta testers as it was full of bugs. And they had those testers, but sadly went pay2play way before the game was ready. But I'm getting off topic...

 

  Akrux

Novice Member

Joined: 3/18/04
Posts: 56

12/01/11 4:33:30 PM#33

There is a HUGE difference between closed beat and open beta. For most companies closed beta is run by the developers and open beta by the marketing department.


  Inktomi

Highlighted Blogger

Joined: 3/25/09
Posts: 664

Give me sparkly, twinkly...

12/01/11 6:11:43 PM#34

Not that I'm bitter either but I didn't get into the SWTOR beta, or the Secret World beta for that matter. Pfft, just means that I'm going to wait until its released and listen to what certain parts of the community says. Then and only then will I plunk down some cash for the game.

When a company holds a beta and requires people to pre-order or even order the game client before they get to play it, I have a problem with that. That was a dirty trick that Trion used and NCSoft used with Aion. Played both and cancelled both pre-orders. I do regret not following through with Aion though, it actually turned out to be a halfway decent game.

 

  User Deleted
12/01/11 6:20:16 PM#35
Originally posted by Inktomi

Not that I'm bitter either but I didn't get into the SWTOR beta, or the Secret World beta for that matter. Pfft, just means that I'm going to wait until its released and listen to what certain parts of the community says. Then and only then will I plunk down some cash for the game.

When a company holds a beta and requires people to pre-order or even order the game client before they get to play it, I have a problem with that. That was a dirty trick that Trion used and NCSoft used with Aion. Played both and cancelled both pre-orders. I do regret not following through with Aion though, it actually turned out to be a halfway decent game.

 

i got offered the beta, but didn't accept. more because of the timing and being unable to download the large files at that time of the month. my isp would've cut my speeds down to 56k for reaching the limit (australian isps have some odd ideas of what "unlimited downloads" means). i'm not annoyed about missing out. it's looking like what i expect it to be: a time filler until gw2.

not sure why you tacked on that last part about companies requiring you to pre-order, because i didn't pre-order swtor to get into the beta. australians can't actually pre-order it there anyway. just signed up months ago as a volunteer is all.

  User Deleted
12/01/11 6:40:21 PM#36

i think the real reason no one wants "beta-testers" these days and are leaning more toward open "glorified free-trials" is rather simple.

in the old days, games were made for gamers. they were often also made BY gamers. i don't think anyone making games back then were sitting around a nice oak meeting table with their CEO giving them the latest share figures and talking in millions, or even billions, of dollar figures. i think they really did sit there talking about how to make a great game. a challenging game. how to make something different and exciting.

these days, with the kind of money on the line, it's about playing the safety game. it's like the movie industry. it's safer to remake an old game (copy an existing successful model or use a tried and tested engine but change the colours), than actually try something different. proof of that lies in games which try something a little different and end up getting squashed. not because they don't have enough players, but often because they don't have the millions of players needed to keep shareholders from demanding heads on plates.

in the end, it's not beta-testers you need. what you need is a good indication as to what "the majority" will accept. you know they're not going to be happy, but before you release the game, you want to know how much you're going to invest in infrastructure. how many servers. will you accept a month of overloaded servers because you know your content wouldn't "keep" the ragers anyway? don't want to invest in more than you need only to have everyone get bored. you want to hold onto your core demographic. you want to accurately judge your future figures. some people think a game fails when it doesn't have enough servers, or has too many glitches. these days, i don't think that's true. a game fails when it has no core demographic.

an open "glorified free-trial" also helps weed out those who may give a false impression of how successful the game might be. look on this site and you'll get a fairly good indication of the number of fans here who change their mind one way or another. handy information for someone wanting to judge what's going to be needed to keep the mmo going. because unlike singleplay games, an mmo is almost a service-oriented game. it is a store which has to be open 24/7. so how many shops will they need? don't want to get stuck paying rent on a deserted store all kitted out and stocked up with stuff no one's going to buy because you've got another branch right next door...

swtor won't fail. it will go f2p after a while like every other game these days. but it'll make a nice bounding profit thanks to the initial burst of subs to begin with. the shareholders will be happy. it will be a success. and that's the bottom line.

it's time to face up to the facts: games are more and more becoming lighter and lighter entertainment to appeal more and more to the masses. which is why i fully expect "cute" potential toys in swtor.

  Mr.Coyote

Novice Member

Joined: 7/07/11
Posts: 34

12/01/11 9:12:57 PM#37



Originally posted by Melieza



What makes you so 'professional'? 











 



Ah, well... I attended Juilliard, I'm a graduate of the Harvard business school, I travel quite extensively, I lived through the Black Plague and had a pretty good time during that, I've seen 'The Exorcist' about a HUNDRED AND SIXTY-SEVEN TIMES, and it keeps getting better EVERY SINGLE TIME I SEE IT!!!" 





 

  Niteynight

Novice Member

Joined: 11/16/11
Posts: 11

12/01/11 9:51:16 PM#38

Originally posted by Supersoups

Thank you. This article has touched me in so many ways and at so many places i don't even where to begin.





 


gold digger anyone?


  Dinidain

Novice Member

Joined: 7/29/06
Posts: 47

12/01/11 10:22:19 PM#39
Originally posted by Mr.Coyote
Originally posted by Melieza
  What makes you so 'professional'? 
 


Ah, well... I attended Juilliard, I'm a graduate of the Harvard business school, I travel quite extensively, I lived through the Black Plague and had a pretty good time during that, I've seen 'The Exorcist' about a HUNDRED AND SIXTY-SEVEN TIMES, and it keeps getting better EVERY SINGLE TIME I SEE IT!!!"

 

Not to mention the fact that he's talking to a dead guy...

 

 

  Also originally posted by Mr. Coyote...

     Until that time, MMORPGs are doomed to repeat a devastating cycle of copied concept and gameplay, eventually becoming so indistinguishable from each other that gamers on a whole will begin to lose all interest in a genre that we once loved with all of our hearts. The entire industry will fold in upon itself and collapse in a pile of weak, unimagined games... *

 

* Mandatory Disclaimer that was somehow inadvertantly omitted...

All of Mr. Coyote's points in this article should  be considered valid and in effect at the time of the posting of this blog...however, of course, should Mr. Coyote receive an extended Beta Tester invite, all previous points in this article shall become Null and Void.

Anyone and everyone can feel free to disagree with any or all of my opinions and observations whenever I rarely post them; it doesn't bother me one bit. Just know that I'll likely never respond to YOUR disagreement or personal attack, because I know better than to argue with idiots, especially upon internet Forums. See what I did there? -- Dinidain

  Circuit8

Novice Member

Joined: 4/02/09
Posts: 3

Think for yourself and question authority.

12/02/11 7:11:36 AM#40

ToR testers were effectively split into two distinctly different groups: General testers and "weekenders". The general testers were given *mostly* 24/7 access and allowed to progress through most of the game. The weekend testers were just grunts used to stress test the servers and provide generalized preferential feedback. I've been in two of the weekend tests and have another invite starting today... I'm asked to rate quest chains based on different criterea with drop-down style multiple choice questions such as "How were your light/dark side choices?". There is also a comment box.


This gives me the impression that the weekenders are not playing to find bugs so much as they are giving feedback as to how much they ENJOYED the game. Of course we are encouraged to report anything buggy or disfunctional we discover. I trust that most of the bugs and glitches were discovered in-house and by professional testing companies. With EA backing a game they have the ability to PAY people who do this for a living.


I wouldn't be so bitter... I also don't consider myself 'unlucky' for participating. It's given me a chance to provide feedback for a game I'm still excited about and assist its launch. Of course there are hordes of idiots with no intent of helping... But again, the weekends are stress tests mostly. And it WAS a weekender that found that one bugged quest weapon that you could one-hit anybody with. Probably a douchebag kid that wasn't planning on providing helpful feedback but the forums exploded with complaints about him... Problem discovered/solved.


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