I do not think I have contradicted myself, or provided any inaccurate information. I will review all my posts, line by line, explaining what they mean.
I'm quoting two instances of you stating that the community should regularly participate in discussions and play FAFDevelop before taking a negative stance towards the changes. I used 'We' in this instance in an attempt to defend the group of people you are criticizing, the ones not participating in the discussion, a group that includes myself. Since they are not participating in the discussion, per your own comments, it is factually true that they did not ask for PBR or new factory models. I make the assumption that this same 'We', the silent majority, was content with the state of the game. I believe it is a very safe assumption to make. They are playing the game and being silent, thus they are content with it. I then state that you believe we should go out of our way to keep up with the latest news and changes and test them, this is what you are stating in the posts I quoted. I then state that you could make all of your changes as UI/SIM mods, I believe this to be true, as it is how all non-game team members do things. I then state that you are the game councilor, a position which allows you to deploy changes to the primary game mode on FAF, this is true.
Now the last line is the spicy one. I state that whenever you make use of your ability to deploy changes to FAF, it will result in criticism. I used the language "use/abuse", shorthand for "use and/or abuse", to indicate that whether the changes made are proper or improper, criticism will ensue regardless. This is clearly true, since it is occurring in the thread. Using this language also insinuates that I feel some abuse may have occurred, but does not make a direct accusation or provide specific details.
Your response was:
As I have stated, the use of "We" was an attempt to defend the "A lot of people" and "Some people" you mentioned in the initial quotes I responded to. I have clarified above that there is, in fact, a large, silent, majority of the playerbase that did not ask for PBR or factory changes, but received them anyway. I did not intend to convey that these people felt you had abused your privilege, regarding factory changes or otherwise, merely that this silent majority did not ask for changes, does not participate in discussions and feedback, yet will come out to complain when the changes are deployed to FAF.
Now onto the posts in this thread.
@thomashiatt said in Game Councilor:
I'm not really criticizing you personally, or saying you have definitely abused your privilege, I'm indifferent towards 90% of your changes, happy with a couple, and displeased by a few. I just don't think you should get upset with the community for not reading all your posts and following along with your plan. It isn't just me, I follow along more than most people, but 99.9% of the community is content with just playing the game and not tracking what you are doing. We're just here to have fun playing a video game. The only time they will ever bother to interact is when you have changed something they do not like. You've deliberately chosen to take the position of the person who randomly pushes changes to their favorite game. They don't have the option to play FAF without your changes. None of them voted you in or approved your plan. If you don't want the backlash you can make your changes in mods which people can voluntarily use.
This paragraph is me attempting to clarify what I meant, as I have just done for a second time in this post. I claim that 99.9% of the community is content with the game and do not follow what goes into FAFDevelop to give feedback. The only time I use "We" in this thread is to say "We're just here to have fun playing a video game", which I believe does accurately represent the goals of the majority. People seem to be taking the 99.9% statistic out of context as me saying 99.9% of people disapprove of the changes, but I did not say that. I said 99.9% of people are content with playing the game and not following along with FAFDevelop. Once again talking about the silent majority. The 99.9% number was, of course, made up on the spot, but it is quite accurate.
@ftxcommando said in Factory models:
People are insane if they’re blaming Jip for some lack of proper communication. He went above and beyond what basically any change would do for communication as it is. The reality of FAF is that nobody cares until it’s dumped on them and even if 3 people did care, the change would get pushed anyway and assume it was just a biased sample of feedback.
Here is the former player councilor saying that the reality of FAF is nobody cares until it is dumped on them.
@biue said in Factory models:
I hate to be the one to tell it to ya but most people have no interest in playing faf develop or joining the faf develop discord and that's a you issue unfortunately. However, the team needs to find better ways to survey community opinion in a way that doesn't force their preference on everybody else. You's need to remember you were voted into a position by like 10 people and have the power to upset thousands of players so how about instead of having a moan about nobody giving you direct feedback, revert the fac models, figure out better ways to reach out to the community, then go from there.
Here is another player echoing my sentiment that most players have no interest in testing these things. They also echo my sentiment that you have the power to upset thousands of players and were notelected by those players. They also echo my sentiment of displeasure with your "having a moan about nobody giving you direct feedback", which is why I wrote my initial post explaining that you should not expect direct feedback.
This chart shows that my assumption for the FAF playerbase is accurate. There are about 20,000 active users on FAF.
I manually counted the number of unique posters in the pbr-development channel on the FAF Discord. There were 10 posters in the last month, or 0.05%, meaning 99.95% of the community didn't participate in that channel. I also counted the unique posters in the bug-reporting channel, assuming this would give a more fair and accurate representation of the people testing and giving feedback. There were 30 unique posters in the last month, or 0.15% of the community, meaning 99.85% of the community doesn't participate in that channel. I compare based on the monthly timeframe because that is how active users were computed in the graph, and because counting manually beyond a month would be impractical for me. Note that many posters in these channels are developers themselves, so can't all be considered as players giving feedback, but I included them regardless.
Now onto this part of things.
@jip said in Game Councilor:
@ThomasHiatt you're quite the joker. You take content out of their context to fit your narrative. You contradict yourself. At least now you're honest you're just talking for yourself instead of using 'we'.
I'll give you a week to apologize and to share your homework that you've surely done before calling me out. Cite your sources that you used to base your opinion on, show us all how badly I abused my privilege by stating the facts. Make sure you have all of them.
I have hopefully already clarified the few instances where I used the word "We". I have not called you out for badly abusing privilege. I insinuated there may have been abuse in a previous thread, without making an accusation or providing specific details. In that thread you were criticizing people for not following your plans and providing feedback, and directed me to this thread where you laid out your plans. I chose to provide feedback on your plans, list some changes I did not like, clarify what things I consider abusive, and stated what I personally want from a game councilor. I have never said the acts of abuse are serious, or that any action should be taken against you for them. I just provided a couple examples of changes that I think were inappropriate.
We can start with the changes to the GC. The changes to the GC tractor claws made it a significantly stronger unit, so that it now easily defeats T3 armies that it would previously lose to. This means it has changed game balance. FAF has a balance team that is in charge of game balance, and they release balance patches when they want to change game balance. You decided that the GC tractor arms didn't fire consistently enough, so you made them fire more often. I think that either you should have changed the GC in such a way that it stayed at its current power level, or you should have coordinated with the balance team, prior to pushing the change, so that they could adjust it to stay at it's current power level. Instead, it was pushed with the game patch 4 months ago, and will supposedly be fixed in a future balance patch. We can see here https://github.com/FAForever/fa/pull/4442 that the balance team does desire it to return to its prior power level. After some bickering a solution was reached that should be released soon.
This went smoothly enough, and is being fixed, but I still feel that it should not have happened this way. There are separate game and balance teams, as well as separate game and balance patches. A game councilor releasing game patches that contain significant balance changes is something I consider to be "an abuse." It was not a time sensitive thing, so you could have taken the time to do it properly. I did not say you should be punished for this abuse in any way, just that I do not like it.
The second instance of "an abuse" is the constant changing of the game UI and adding new features that are enabled by default. I deleted my game.prefs file today to see what is really enabled by default in the current game version. I was pleasantly surprised to see that most of the new features are now disabled by default, with the exception of reclaim batching. Many more features were enabled by default in the past, and I have complained about that in the past, along with others.
@black_wriggler said in Game Councilor:
Then have it enabled in the game.prefs for new players - but don't change it for existing players. New features shouldn't break expected behaviour for software updates if avoidable.
Like black_wriggler says, it would be far better if features were not suddenly added and enabled for existing players. The goal seems to be to improve things for new players, so it could be enabled just for them. You can have your cake and eat it too.
I am happy to see that most of the features are now disabled by default. Reclaim batching is, however, still enabled by default. Reclaim batching is also something that could have been done previously by a UI mod (if I undestand correctly), and was disliked by many players, as discussed in this thread https://forum.faforever.com/topic/5135/i-am-loving-the-new-reclaim-batching-in-2022-10-0?_=1678207813565. It could have just stayed a UI mod, and people who wanted it could use it, but you decided you wanted it in the base game. This breaks the existing reclaim UI mods that people, including myself, were using and makes your preferred reclaim UI mod the one everyone has to use by default. You get to trample the other UI mods because you have the ultimate authority over the game, and I see that as a bit abusive. Once again, I'm not saying you should be punished for this abuse, just that I do not like it.
I have done my due diligence to ensure my UI stays constant. I have backed up my UI mods and game.prefs file, so that even across new installs and new computers I can still play the game in the same way. I have asked that new features not be enabled by default. I obviously do not want my any UI mods broken.
I do not think I am being unreasonable with these desires. It is widely known that competitive gamers and real world athletes like to keep things consistent with their settings and hardware/equipment. They may even have rituals about wearing the same clothes or eating the same things before matches. They try to eliminate any changes or variables that could impact their performance.
Regardless of my efforts, my UI will still be changed somehow with virtually ever game patch. Someone will randomly change how the upgrade key works. Hotbuild switching will get messed up on accident, and later fixed. My UI mods will get broken. Someone will decide reclaim batching is how everyone should be playing, enable it by default, and break my UI mods. This kind of stuff doesn't happen in any other competitive game I play. I find it very unprofessional and absurd that the UI and controls of a 17 year old game can be this unstable. I can see the negative effects of these things in my own gameplay, as well as the other high level ladder replays that I watch. People are gone for months or years, and come back to a UI that works differently than when they left. They might go to the effort of replacing all their UI mods, and adjusting to the new changes, or they might decide it's not worth the effort and return to inactivity. Requiring a deep exploration of the mod vault and game options, just to get back to baseline, is a very unpleasant way to greet returning players.
I am aware that keeping all UI mods functional is not the job of the game team. And I am aware that some of the things I complain about were unintentional bugs. But these bugs and broken mods are the result of the relaxed attitude towards changing the UI. I understand the desire to enhance the UI, but I think at this point in the games lifecycle, changes to the UI should be done though mods, rather than game patches. Players can pick and choose which mods they want, some mods may contradict with other mods, but that is better than a game patch breaking peoples mods.
It's taken me a several hours to collect this data and to write the post, but I think I have explained everything that I wrote and included some data and examples where appropriate. If there is anything further that you believe I have taken out of context, or any places where I have contradicted myself, please highlight them so I can address them.