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Thread: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

  1. #65
    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    Quote Originally Posted by Allen View Post
    What about those who pre-ordered from the Elite: Dangerous website? They aren't the same as Kickstarter donations, are they covered by contractual law?
    Yes, if they haven't received a product of some kind. Hence why they're the ones getting refunds (assuming they didn't play the game).

    I agree with the rest of your post - it's our choice, though it's not our right - devs are free to make the games they like (more or less). It's our right not to buy them though! (And even, to be able to express our opinion of what we like - though the venue for such an expression is not unlimited)

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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    A number of things stand out for me, here.

    First, Kickstarter. As far as I'm concerned, there's no issue. A fundamental part of funding any business development, Kickstarter or not, is that developments develop. It may or may not develop entirely as expected. That's part of the risk. As, indeed, is that it never reaches a released product at all. And the earlier in its development a project is, the greater the risk of direction change or complete failure. Kickstarter is really a form of venture capital, broken down into small chunks and spread wide, and it carries the same risks.

    Second, game "vision". If Braben now wants a different vision, or the same vision but differently implemented, fair enough. His game, his choice. However, my money, my choice of whether to buy or not. And now, I won't be.

    What does wind me up is what looks like deceitful answers. The Q&A quoted a few posts up look to me to be artfully written to explain his decision processes, and as I said, that's fair enough. But I 100% agree with Scaryjim's stance about Braben apparently telling us gamers what we will or won't enjoy, and on two issues especially - single-player v "offline", and "in-game purchases".

    On the first, for me, a single-player game is a game that has two elements, a single player (me, in my case) and pre-programmed or NPC reactions. That can be quite nuanced, if done well, but it involves NO other human reaction at all. None. It doesn't involve other players altering the 'universe", and so requires absolutely no online connection at all, to play.

    What he seems to envision is a "single player" game, taking part in an ever-changing universe where change is based on other human input. This is single-player in the sense that I'm not directly interacting with other human players, but not single-player in the sense that my environment is affected by them.

    My problem, and it's no leap of imagination to see it as an unusual situation, is that my gaming machine is connected to, and in fact is one of, several machines I use for business that simply ARE NOT, for security purposes, internet-connected. The reason is that my mist powerful machines are used where I need the power, and I don't need power for web browsing, email, etc. So, the two environmenrs have an air gap between them, and "never the twain shall meet". As I'm not at all interested in online gaming these days, an entirely stand-alone, offline, single-player game is what I want, what I was expecting, and what I'm now not getting. Hence, I won't be buying Elite. Which is a shame, because the Elite series is one of my all-time favourites, and I was hugely looking forward to a new generation. Oh well, life's full of disappointments.

    Second, .....

    Q: Will the game be free to play after the initial purchase?

    A: We do not plan to make it subscription-based. Once you have purchased the game up front, you will be able to play thereafter for no further cost. Everything in the game will be purchasable with in-game Credits, earned from trading, bounty-hunting, etc. We will probably allow the supplemental purchase of Credits with real money, for those who want to accelerate their progress through the game.
    Riiiiight. Uh Huh.

    We "do not plan to" does not mean "will not". Read any politician's statements. I could simply be 'we intend to, and will, but we haven't YET had the meeting where we make that plan'.

    And "probably" allow "those that want to" to pay to "accelerate" progress, in an environment where multiplayer play rules, and even single player games are affected by it. Sorry DB, but that totally ruins any game for me.

    In summary, I'm VERY disappointed, mainly because previous statements unnecessarily raised my expectations for a single-player fully-offline mode of a new version of one of my all-time favourites. I'm feeling a bit like a puppy that's had it's favourite toy dipped in it's favourite food and had it dangled just out of it's reach for a year or two, and has now had it unceremoniously yanked away for good. That is, I'm a bit grumpy about it, at best. Then, adding insult to injury, having been salivating for two years, I'm told it's for my own good, and not what I wanted anyway. Yes, Mr Braben, it was what I bleeping wanted, and if you think the toy you're now dangling is ANY form of substitute for the favourite you just whipped away, you're delusional.

    That patronising drivel turned me from merely grumpy to looking for something, or someone, to bite. Preferably, you, Braben.

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    Seriously casual gamer KeyboardDemon's Avatar
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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    Quote Originally Posted by Allen View Post
    I wanted to play E offline in single player mode, as I did with Frontier: Elite 2. When I pre-purchased the game it was intended to be included and I didn't see much of a reason why it wouldn't be in the final product. They have now confirmed that there will be no offline mode and it upsets me greatly to see what could be a fantastic game get ruined (IMO) by being online only. That is my choice, that is my right.
    I think I might be confused about Single player and Offline modes, I hope you will be able to clarify my thinking here, as this part of your post suggests I have misunderstood what is happening at a fundamental (emphasis on the mental not the fun part lol) level. Are you saying that by taking away the Offline mode there will be no Single player mode at all?

    I have been working on the assumption that it will still be possible to play as a single player or in a private group, but I would need to be connected to the internet when I do this, so that trade, kills and even location data can be passed to and from the server while I play, much like has been happening at the moment in the Beta versions that I have been playing.

    If they took away the Single player and kept groups then there is nothing to stop a player from setting up a Private Group and then never letting anyone else join it and then hey presto, a single player experience. I've played with a Private Group, which I have found to be really entertaining, it's even better with TeamSpeak running.

  4. #68
    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    Quote Originally Posted by KeyboardDemon View Post
    I think I might be confused about Single player and Offline modes, I hope you will be able to clarify my thinking here, as this part of your post suggests I have misunderstood what is happening at a fundamental (emphasis on the mental not the fun part lol) level. Are you saying that by taking away the Offline mode there will be no Single player mode at all?
    There's a shared universe, with players actions affecting trade prices, missions, faction control etc. Your actual interaction with other players is likely handled via something a bit like instances, ie peer to peer communications allowing a number of players in the same bit of space to see each other and interact - you can set this to allow 0 interactions so that you never see other players in your bit of space. However you are still playing in their shared universe, so players actions are still affecting each other.

  5. #69
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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    I can see why it's causing something of an uproar. Had they announced this earlier in the development cycle (perhaps at the release of beta 2 - they must surely have known that they were struggling with offline single player at that point?) then I feel they'd have been much better off.

    On a personal level it really doesn't bother me. I'll be playing either online single player or possibly online in private groups, and this was my intention all along *but* I can see why people are feeling aggrieved about this announcement so close to the game being technically ready for release (ie gamma, out today)

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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    Quote Originally Posted by KeyboardDemon View Post
    ...

    I have been working on the assumption that it will still be possible to play as a single player or in a private group, but I would need to be connected to the internet when I do this, so that trade, kills ...etc..
    Exactly that, as I understand it.

    What's gone is single-player OFFLINE mode. Single-player mode survives, with occasional low-bandwidth connections, to "update" the game world, in reaction to other player's actions, or developer-seeded events. So, as I understand it, the "environment" reacts to other players, affecting single-player mode, but single mode players don't interact with other real players.

    Of course, for me, the issue is that an online connection is required at all.

    Also, some sort of server authentication is going on, meaning if servers are ever not there, for whatever reason, then, no game. That's another non-starter for me. I will not buy a game that requires that - which means I rarely buy new-release games. Hurray for GOG.

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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    Quote Originally Posted by Splash View Post
    I can see why it's causing something of an uproar. Had they announced this earlier in the development cycle (perhaps at the release of beta 2 - they must surely have known that they were struggling with offline single player at that point?) then I feel they'd have been much better off.

    ....
    Braben pretty much admitted that. They apparently 'hoped' to be able to get it in, but couldn't without compromises THEY deem unacceptable. I struggle to see that, personally, having been enjoying games, including Elite, for decades that didn't require a world evolving from other player's actions.

    This is why I'm sceptical that the stated reason for dropping single-player offline mode is the real, and whole, story, as opposed to a rational PR excuse. If you're going to leverage "accelerating progress" through in-game credit-buying, it's hard to do with an offline mode.

    And with that kind of system, it's CRITICALLY important where progress without constantly buying in-game items/upgrades. Some games are vurtually impossible to progress beyond a given point with doing so. Well, fair enough, I guess, for a game that's free, or next to free.

    But, for me, it's buying a pig in a poke. You've no idea at all what the game will cost, in total, to complete, and if (as I often do) you reinstall and replay a couple of years later, from scratch, you get to pay all over again. Nuts to that idea.

    So, I don't mind paying a decent price, even £40-£50, for a really good game I really want, but having paid it, I absolutely insist on not making ANY further payments to play-complete the game, as is, whether it's right now, or in ten years time. Also, not being reliant on authentication servers that may no longer exist.



    Quote Originally Posted by Splash View Post
    .... *but* I can see why people are feeling aggrieved about this announcement so close to the game being technically ready for release ....
    Exactly. Carefully nurtured expectations have been dashed.

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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    i dont really mind not having a signal player mode. plus this is the first time ive seen this game and its costing £50 and its not even going to be out for another year.

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    Seriously casual gamer KeyboardDemon's Avatar
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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    Quote Originally Posted by lopes390 View Post
    i dont really mind not having a signal player mode. plus this is the first time ive seen this game and its costing £50 and its not even going to be out for another year.
    The expected release date is 16th December, that's about 3 weeks, so it's a bit closer than another year.

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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    Re Taskmaster: Contracts, I take money from you and 'promise' to develop a game for you, for that what has happened under the kickstarter rules changing or not delivering the Game in any way stated is a breach of contract: "Projects must be honest and clearly presented.

    Our community is built on trust and communication. Projects can’t mislead people or misrepresent facts, and creators should be candid about what they plan to accomplish" kickstarter

    Contract's are implied by the acts of the parties or Implied by laws are lawfull, which would also include loose contracts, which Ian Braben would have incurred promoting his kickstarter project via the videos.

    The original accomplishment goals listed on the kickstarter fundraiser are the barest minimum his development team are required to achieve and the single player experience without connection to the Galaxy server is part of an Implied Contract because it was listed in the kickstarter campaign I posted for you, it is under US law, kickstarter is based in Brooklyn US, read lifes smallprint. It may not be enforceable, no-one may care, or he may pay back those who kick up a fuss, but he has went back on pledges given.

    There may be big cracking excuses for not completing the game development, Battlecruiser 3000 AD had lots too, I am sure you can generate lots more for Braben.
    Last edited by KendrickDM; 26-11-2014 at 09:27 PM.

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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    Quote Originally Posted by Allen View Post
    Also, I don't understand why the "pro online only" people are getting so upset and trying to force the "anti online only" people to see the errors of their ways, or trying to force them in to believing they are wrong for being upset that a major development change (regardless of if it was suggested, promised or written in stone) has left them paying (quite a lot) for something they will no lounger be able to enjoy, for WHATEVER reason they have.
    I'm not so much trying to change people's perspectives, as just discussing what they think they are entitled to in the first place.

    With anything donated to Kickstarter or subsequent mechanics, that money is donated in the same way you would donate to a charity. You're entitled to nothing for it, aside from the potential to get what is stated in the spec but is still subject to change.

    Pre-orders are somewhat different, as that is an actual contract of sale. If the description of the goods no longer matches, then you may be liable for a refund (which could end up requiring a third party to adjudicate, such as Trading Standards or a court).

    Quote Originally Posted by KendrickDM View Post
    Re Taskmaster: Contracts, I take money from you and 'promise' to develop a game for you, for that what has happened
    And that is what is happening. They are developing a game.
    You donated money. That is a write-off, as far as anything is concerned. There is no actual contract there.

    Quote Originally Posted by KendrickDM View Post
    Under the kickstarter rules changing or not delivering the Game in any way stated is a breach of contract: "Projects must be honest and clearly presented.
    Our community is built on trust and communication. Projects can’t mislead people or misrepresent facts, and creators should be candid about what they plan to accomplish"
    What they plan.
    So if David Braben died half-way through and FD were no longer able to make the game, would they still be liable? What if they all died in a freak gardening accident?
    Things happen that may or may not affect development. Failure to deliver and the possibility of things having to change is just as equally covered and FD will have been very careful to avoid breaching the T&Cs of Kickstarter.
    Any terms such as these being laid down in advance will factor into any lawsuit.

    Quote Originally Posted by Saracen View Post
    What he seems to envision is a "single player" game, taking part in an ever-changing universe where change is based on other human input. This is single-player in the sense that I'm not directly interacting with other human players, but not single-player in the sense that my environment is affected by them.
    I think the idea was that certain events would kick off when triggered. For SP, that would mean they'd be scripted. For online, it would be triggered by players doing something. The evolving online universe is easier to plan in and probably cheaper to have players drive it than Devs - You could scripts all the possible events in, but that's a lot of work and likely the reason why he's saying it'd now mean two separate games... That's my reckoning, anyway.

    Not saying it helps people get what they were expecting, regardless of what was stated in the initial brief, but hoping that it helps find some insight as to the exact reasons for it no longer happening... in lieu of FD providing an exact and detailed explanation themselves, which is something they DO need to provide!!

  12. #76
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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    Quote Originally Posted by Saracen View Post
    Riiiiight. Uh Huh.

    .....

    And "probably" allow "those that want to" to pay to "accelerate" progress, in an environment where multiplayer play rules, and even single player games are affected by it. Sorry DB, but that totally ruins any game for me.
    Pay-to-win. Hadn't spotted this. In my opinion, this is the single-biggest factor in determining the result and future of any online game. Ultimately this breaks any online game, not because getting players to spend money is a bad thing but because it's usually done in an uneven way that artificially divides the player base. Either everyone should have to spend money and in a regulated and even fashion or no-one should.

    Elite might not be a game where one 'wins' in the traditional sense, but anyone who has played an MMO for any moderate time knows the impact of real world money on game outcome, and although at first it often looks like non or low paying gamers can still have a good time, two things usually happen. The developers find it hard to resist the pull of more money and start developing things which will simply make more money resulting in an unfriendly world for non/low payers, and also, as the game starts to saturate with real world finance the gap between non/low pay players and higher paying players becomes obvious and unworkable.

    Essentially it comes down to virtual economies and I've never seen an 'open' system where this has been done well. Even if Braben manages to pull it off, as Saracen has said, it should be made very explicit what sort of financial investment will be required or exactly how this will work.
    No trees were harmed in the creation of this message. However, many electrons were displaced and terribly inconvenienced.

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    Re: News - Elite: Dangerous single-player offline mode officially ditched

    Quote Originally Posted by Galant View Post
    Even if Braben manages to pull it off, as Saracen has said, it should be made very explicit what sort of financial investment will be required or exactly how this will work.
    Having played this for quite a while now, I really don't think purchasable Credits will impact the community that much. It *will* shorten the individual's game and reduce/eliminate the purpose of most money-making activities such as mining and trading, which to me seems important as Elite is more of a space trading game than an outright combat one.

    But even if you're planning to misbehave - The amount of money it would take to buy the Credits to kit you and your griefer-gang with fully tooled-up Anacondas, the amount of effort it would take to go round the galaxy and find all this and then the amount of co-ordination it would take to find players to grief in a 400 billion system arena just doesn't seem worth it... especially when a Competent-ranked pilot in a poxy little tooled-up Eagle, such as myself, can (by the very skin of his teeth) take down an Anaconda single-handedly, your end result would probably be somewhat anti-climactic.

    Star Citizen are doing the exact same thing, incidentally.
    I personally don't believe in it, but it's what they're doing to bump up the server maintenance funds and hopefully keep these things going a bit longer than the usual big-title MMOs.

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