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A List of Remedies

Discussion in 'Community Chat' started by icuurd12b42, Sep 9, 2018.

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  1. icuurd12b42

    icuurd12b42 TMC Founder GMC Elder

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2016
    Posts:
    1,765
    I just spend an hour and a half reading the infamous Roundtable thread...

    This is not an attempt to reboot this thread. The reasons listed in that thread basically encompass all the issues I been having which mostly explain why I have barely visited the forum over the last year...

    It's actually a big surprise to me that I'm still listed in the top contributing users... 1600 post and still in the top 20? In the old forum where I would certainly have been surpassed by the numerous 3-10 post a day users...

    Something is wrong and needs addressing...

    Notice:
    1. The lack of will to contribute as shown by me being still in the top 20 contributors. Less enthusiasm perhaps?
    2. The lack of appropriate answers to basic questions in general, were the most basic repeating questions, in the past, would be properly answered, echoed on and on, were as now it seems we are back to square one with less expert contributors and more shot in the dark answers by people struggling their way through and therefore less accurate replies to questions.
    3. The number of complaints and issues which crescendo-ed to that aforementioned topic.
    Let's leave it at that.
    ___________

    I conclude and it was mention that this may be caused by
    1. A lack of interaction/communication/engagement with/between yoyo and their customers.
    2. A drop in confidence in the product
    3. A skewed, some would even say derailed, product plan/direction that no longer matches a vocal number of the product users desires. I won't go into details, it's all been said.
    Again, let's leave it at that. 3 is easy to manage
    ___________

    Now it seems a lot of people want transparency and want yoyo to be a little more involved and more in touch with their concerns and be more reactive to issues they encounter and more active in addressing the small stuff and the large stuff. It is likely this will happen now that gms14 will be dropped from the yoyo staff workload, so perhaps it is time for a few things to consider...

    Suggestion #1
    Yoyo staff mandatory forum membership
    • All yoyo staff have a gmc account, no exception (Non technical staff may be excluded). It's your forum, you should all be on it!
    • All yoyo staff should be tagged as such and not be confused with forum moderators (which most aren't staff btw)
    • All yoyo staff should have the same forum name as would appear anywhere else in the organisation, so I know who I'm interacting with here or the help desk of via email
    • And finally all yoyo staff should post 5 posts a week, at minimum, answering questions according to their ability.
    Here's the point. We want to know who you are, we want to know you are using the product like we do, we want to have access to your expertise, and if unskilled in the product (it happens, no shame there), we want to help you as well... and basically it would be nice to know you on a more personal and professional level.

    Knowing you makes it harder for us to b*tch about this and that and knowing us will make you maybe a little more open to our suggestions...
    __________

    Now one big complaint is new releases breaking things. It's been a while but personally, a long while back, I literally broke down in tears of frustrations when an update broke stuff which took me 2 weeks to implement and 3 weeks to bypass/redo! Only to then have the problem fixed and my redo break at the next release months later... I have read a few of those post over the years and it's repeated in that thread....

    Suggestion #2
    Proper release dates, fix more bugs and proper testing. Now this will come out a little insulting, who am I to pry and assume how you do things... though I been in the sw industry for many years and a product manager... I can assume a lot...
    • You should have a weekly or bi weekly release to fix big show stoppers that makes a developer cry and have us witness you fixing the little annoyances that bother us way too much on a faster schedule.
    • One of my last jobs our CEO came up with this brilliant solution when the bug database got out of control... Fix 5 tiny things a weeks and one big one. Look at the bug report, find something assign it to yourself and fix it! With this attitude there we cleaned the bug database of like 10000 entries in 2 months, most of us were doing 5 small things a days and a lot were duplicates and a lot of stuff was 5 minute work no one had the time to look at, but it worked... I'm speculating here, but it seems small issues are getting buried and you guys may be spending too much time on the big stuff. Likely head deep in new features. Fixing a tiny thing can be a good distraction from the big stuff. Albeit this may be less an issue with 1.4 out of the way
    • Test. Proper unit test, test scripts... Do you have them, do you need them? Boundary test, Memory leak tests, there's a **** ton of functions in gml do you have a test for each? It is quite the task so I would not complain if you don't... How about weird issues people reported, are those been automated and part of your test harness? A lot of these are edge cases mostly impossible to automate but still... Now here is something the community could possible be a huge help!!! I suggest you could possibly ask us to write tests for you, to add to your test harness, a community effort would be a great thing to have, a shared project to have us involved in the product stability, heck perhaps you could even pay a small reward per test script, there's a lot of people here, myself included that would be willing to help out, especially if it means I can also buy a rack of bacon at the end of the month so I too can have my bacon roll fridays.
    • Semi related, the help system, why not turn that into a community wiki so at the very least we can fix issues and perhaps provide more examples for functions?
    OK, that sounded a little rantish but still, this is my experience given to you for free...
    __________


    Alright, last bit, let's address the product direction here and the issues people mentioned. Now it appears to me that some people find your plan incompatible with their ideas and find some promises lacking in actualisation... I'm not going to or want to debate or ask why you are heading in a specific way; I am quite aware the direction of a product changes for various reasons, time, difficulty of design, attracting eyes on the product by the big guys, any reasons can cause a change in direction. Balancing that with what the people actually want is sometimes difficult and so it may seem that some efforts are placed in aspects of the program that people find a little odd given that they have their own idea, hopes and concerns, again these are discussed in that topic...

    Suggestion #3
    • Put a little more time in adding features people have been asking for without derailing your own plans of course.
    • Consider the tiny requests, those - ohh I can add this in 10-20 minutes - a priority, as long as it won't interfere with your larger goals.
    • Ask the people here on the forum, what feature they want next and try to tackle that, maybe one small feature a week and one large one a month.
    • You should definitely have a bi weekly brainstorm topic on the forum where we all can put in our 2 cents so you can adjust your goals to match the need. We would all wait in anticipation for these I'm sure. A semi-live discussion on a thread that would last say 2 days...
    This would further consolidate the community with company and benefit the product.
    __________

    My final thought is this...

    A lot of us have been here for a long time. Most of us want the product to continue to succeed, and also, mainly most of us want the product to evolve. GM have given me great joy over the last ...12 years?... wow...

    I have a great respect for what you are accomplishing; what you did with the product is top notch. But I think it is also time for things to change a little and I think the community lately has voiced that, yes, by stating concerns mostly and by making some few suggestions...

    Looking at the lack of response in the other thread, I assume maybe you don't really quite know where to start, how to address the issues? So I took it upon myself, as usual, a lonely voice in the night, to put some ideas on the table for your consideration. A lot of those are based off my own experience. I do think some of those ideas have merit and perhaps you can use those as a starting point.

    PS Please don't mind the typos please, I've re-read this 10 times and keep adding stuff more than correcting typos, so that means that Typo-King over here likely added more typos... I'm going to bed, it's 7:20 am now I been at this for 3 hours...
    PPS I don't mind if you close the topic, I don't want this to turn into a bitchfest
     
  2. rmanthorp

    rmanthorp YoYo Games Staff Admin YYG Staff

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2016
    Posts:
    144
    Thank you for posting this. I am going to close this thread, partly because you set off by invoking the previous thread that got closed and it's very likely to fall back into that pattern and also because Nocturne is on holiday currently, so our coverage of the GMC is lower. However, I will talk to the fact that we are looking to change the way things are on the forum and we are starting with finding out what works and what doesn't with some user surveys which I ask everyone to take and be honest: https://forum.yoyogames.com/index.php?threads/gmc-feedback-survey-sept-2018.52510/

    With the above, and our recent releases of version 1.4.9999 and 2.1.5 we have been focusing up and fixing all the things that have been longstanding. I can't promise everything but we are watching, reading and reacting to the issues that are being raised. Thanks again.
     
    Nocturne, csanyk and icuurd12b42 like this.
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