Letter to MA: Textures on Clothes - Undermining confidence in the platform

Discussion in 'Technical, security and bug reports' started by Wistrel, Jul 30, 2014.

  1. Wistrel

    Wistrel Kick Ass Elf

    I was wondering if I could get some feedback on this support case I'm about to submit - what I've written fair?/OK?

    Someone recently said I deserved "Thick Skin" award for putting up with Mindark for 10 years. Well the reality is that every so often I get really hacked off with them (well, doesn't everyone?) and have a bit of a moan. I'm only human after all. Anyhow this is what I've written. CC and please.
    Recent Breaking of Textures and Clothing appearance

    One of the nice things about the new avatar system was that (finally) we didn't have to have avatars and clothes that were mirrored down the centre line and therefore lacked any kind of asymmetry. In fact during an interview, one of the MindArk artists highlighted this as being one of the more significant improvements/features of the new system.

    For quite some time since, the new system has had some really nice asymmetrical clothes therefore, however recently this has been broken for a number of clothing items and/or textures. Please jump to before and after examples below for where clothes rendering has gone wrong/back to the old (bad/old fashioned) system of symmetrical texturing.

    In all seriousness, is there any chance that this could be fixed? I appreciate the sentiment of "it's only clothes, it doesn't matter/is low priority" however allow me to explain why this is not the case and why changes/bugs like these undermine the entire aim/credibility of a game such as Project Entropia.

    The simple reality is that if you bought a jacket from a high street store, put it away then took it out the next day, only to find the design or style had changed overnight you'd be fairly unhappy and, most likely, ask the store for a refund.

    Clothes in Entropia only serve a purpose based on their appearance and, if that appearance changes after the time of sale/creation, they cease to serve that purpose and become useless items. Not many people like to invest much money in an item that could become useless at any moment. It would be like buying a radio that all reviews say is likely to break within 3 weeks of usage. Not only would you not buy that radio, but you would also avoid purchasing from that brand/company in the future. However it is regular investments like these that MindArk depend upon in order to sustain their business.

    The same is true of Entropia. As a real cash economy, players are required to place faith in MindArk that their purchases of in game items will be worthwhile. If MindArk are seen to be rendering items useless, be this deliberately, carelessly or via the introduction of (and lack of safeguarding practices against) bugs, players will be cautious to invest in items and warn others not to do so either. This in turn would not only have a knock on effect to deposits but also to game play and through that, a deterioration in frequency of engagement.

    As is well known, the majority of players will not profit financially or withdraw money from Entropia therefore an incentive for most players to invest and engage in the game must come entirely from rewards purchasable via in game cash or loot. If said rewards are likely to become useless however this defeats the object of obtaining them and with it, the point (for many people) in playing a game.

    In short, if there is no perceived worthwhile reward (clothes, apartments, furniture, pets, other non-essential/luxury items or even profit), there is little reason in playing. If there is no reason to play, then there is no Entropia. If there is no Entropia, there is no Mindark and if there is no Mindark, there is no paycheque.

    As a final point, aside from being something the majority of players could invest their rewards in, there is a minority who choose to craft and texture clothes as their in game profession of choice. For them, the equivalent of a good hunting loot is to produce an item of clothing they find visually appealing. For the appearance of said item to then randomly change a few weeks down the line is a little like recalling a 1000ped hunting loot and replacing it with a 100ped loot a few weeks later. Somehow, this doesn't seem a viable game mechanic... or basis for a solid economy for that matter.

    Thanks for listening
    Wistrel Chianti
    • Agree Agree x 3
  2. It would help if you posted some screenies here too, because if you don't show that i bet they will think (as I am doing now) that there are a lot of things that have higher priorities that one piece of clothing where the button is sewed on wrong.
  3. Amber Knightley

    Amber Knightley I see dead people.

    I totally agree, provide pictures pictures and pictures.
    Show of what you are complaining about, especially when writing something so extensive!
    Keep us posted about the progress, I'm fed up with my bugged clothes :(
  4. RAZER

    RAZER Custom title ... uh ...

    looks about right to me and I agree with the images, show them to us as well.
  5. EwoK

    EwoK Southern Fortress Engineering

    Beautifully written. Agree that pics are needed
  6. Wistrel

    Wistrel Kick Ass Elf

    Don't worry, the pics are there too. Several pages of examples in fact! Some containing multiple stages/examples of what-the-fuck'ery? per item. But I'm not going to post them here though. It took me ages to compile everything and would take even longer to post/layout on here. Sadly, MA are not paying me to find and report bugs to them. Would be nice cause it takes ages.

    Anyhow thanks for the feedback, if people think its fair comment I'll send the support case in the morning, Hopefully Ulf will pick it up. He's being pretty chatty about the Space situation I've been reporting on and seems to be generally "on the case" and interested in getting stuff fixed.

    • Like Like x 1
  7. Yes, you do deserve the achievement for Iron/Thick Skin for putting up with MA for 10yrs, your analysis of the situation is fine along with the reality behind how things are in relation to this being correct.

    You will get the response from support that your request will be passed onto the <insert department here> to be looked into of which it will be added to a pile and prioritised somewhere on a list by the MA/PP "project manager" using the term broadly as to a "rough timeframe" of when along with this project manager making an assessment of how much of the company's resources should be allocated to the remedial action required, in this case, fixing of the specific (or group of) item(s) specified in the request, clothing and applied textures/colours/design-work/etc.

    This being another one of many things for MA/PP to look into of course.

    Hopefully you will get the issue rectrified as a customer of the service "at some point in time" and that the "project manager" after successfully communicating within MindArk's structure between those responsible in the company's workflow-process involved in providing the remedial outcome follows through and communicates once again with support to provide you an "estimated timeframe" as to when this may possibly occur in the response communicated back to you;

    Or at the very least as in the case of MA a cop out to having followed any sort of certified Quality-Assurance procedures within the company in handling the above mentioned workflow-process with any sort of care-factor attached, that support gives you the standard copy-paste-reply of keep an eye on the news section for future updates *snickers* in their hope that that is enough to keep you feeling confident and satisified that MindArk/Calypso(Also MA) has taken onboard your request and that an outcome will be produced ...

    <sarcasm> As it has on so many occassions in the past with their track record in doing so <sarcasm>

    As mention before, maybe not all will be bad in that a possible crack in the unresponsive wall will appear and something will be done, though do not expect such things to be ongoing in not having this occur again in the future as it gets squandered by the present day MA modus operandi for this future occurance to present itself again.

    Requoting for ease

    Yes I have experience the interacting with an unresponsive wall on occassion, however not all is bad, tiny cracks have revealed themselves through the efforts that have been made by MindArk until they get quickly squanded by the 'modus operandi' that surrounds MindArk and those in charge of the decision making process, including those from where they draw their inspirations from (eg. Jan) and what-not.

    Klas is another 'person' and also the new CEO of MindArk - You can't change people, so change people as the saying goes in business with respect to this position in the hope the new CEO's influence trickles down to those Klas is delegating to.

    I believe that every person should be given at least the opportunity to make a positive impact, even if the hope is just a candle flame in lighting the void which has been MindArk's perceived set-in-stone modus operandi without evolving based on passed events." (end of response)

    Maybe things will change as Klas is a new person and should be given the opportunity to bring about change. So I wish you luck on this occassion Wistrel on a positive outcome this time around and to all customers of Entropia Universe on future requests like this one.

    So all in all, good job Wistrel, keep positive, you can only keep trying after all ...

    Take Care.
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2014
  8. Wistrel

    Wistrel Kick Ass Elf

    OK just an up date on this. I've had a pretty good response from the support staff on this report and the case has now been closed awaiting staff to have enough time to look into the fixes. So watch this space... maybe we will see a change... if not I'll probably give up.

    I have some confidence as at least some of my other bug reports have been fixed. I'm willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.

    Ideally I think I'd prefer a support system where cases remain open until fixed... however I understand, depending on the model of support they are using they may well have a sort of secondary system, ie people report things and once confirmed or enough info has been provided the case is closed and the bug goes into a work list which will be addressed as and when resources allow for it.

    Anyhow I'll report back if anything more happens on this in future vu's
    • Informative Informative x 2
  9. Jamira

    Jamira Samurai Girl

    The younger folks here ask for pictures? LOL! Well, the elders know what it means to own a bugged Stormcoat. That's not the main issue. The main issue is that MindArk don't care much for such smalland second-tier things since ... ehhrm ... since 2003? Even Wistrel won't succeed with her support case. I can't remember how many support cases I sent to MA regarding exact the same theme.

    Oh wait ... I sold this bugged Stormcoat for 6k PED - ROFL!
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