Multiwinia Xfire chat?

General discussion about Multiwinia

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kryptic
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Multiwinia Xfire chat?

Postby kryptic » Thu Dec 04, 2008 9:05 pm

Well it is 15:00 EST and I'm not seeing anybody online for the Xfire chat. Does somebody know what's going on?
I've been online since 13:30 EST as instructed waiting for stuff to happen.
The Xfire guy seemed to just disappear.

edit: I got in. I guess I just didn't get invited on the first round of invites.
Last edited by kryptic on Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Lithilk
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Postby Lithilk » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:08 pm

This is the interview!


[20:11] <The room title is now "xfire central command room">
[20:11] <Your current permission level for this room is "Peon (Mute)">
[20:11] abandon22: itzmattu (itzmattu): Hello Introversion and XFire! I'm

talking on behalf of the UMass Lowell Game Developers Group. Our first

question today is we are curious if you created a Game Design Document for

Multiwinia/Darwinia, and if so, how long was it and how long did it take to

create.

We don't really work like that. With Darwinia we just kind of experimented

for a long time, probably 18 months or so, before we'd finalised our game

design. I actually don't think you can create a design doc up front if you

want to make something genuinely original.
[20:12] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): Q'ba (dubus): Well, I have few

questions. Why did you think that nowadays, in the age of Crysis, Gears of

War or Far Cry, there would be a place on a gaming market for products such

as Defcon or Multiwinia? It was a big risk to release these kind of games,

with poor graphics but great gameplay.

Well for the same reason that we don't all like or listen to Britney Spears!

If you're going to do something different and you're going to make a living

by doing that, it had really better be different! I think a lot of people

were thinking the same things as us - gameplay is important and often

neglected over graphics.
[20:13] abandon22: Q'ba (dubus): Well, I have few questions. Why did you

think that nowadays, in the age of Crysis, Gears of War or Far Cry, there

would be a place on a gaming market for products such as Defcon or

Multiwinia? It was a big risk to release these kind of games, with poor

graphics but great gameplay.

I like all those games a lot, but all three of them are combat shooters,

military setting etc. There will ALWAYS be a place for original games that

are different from the mainstream.
[20:14] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): € /|\ ù § ä И (emusan):
Why/when did you decide to sell the source code for Uplink?

IIRC, it was back in the day when we were flat broke. At that point we

figured well we might as well sell everything we have, 'cause we haven't

really got much else to looose!
[20:14] abandon22: FIS]Rachel (raaachel): Was there a person that you based

Dr. Sepulveda upon?

Yes Dr Sepulveda is based on Sir Clive Sinclair, inventor of the Spectrum and

various other gadgets
[20:15] abandon22: Palehorse864 (palehorse864): If you could criticize one

thing about your own games in general, what would it be, and what would you

do to improve it?
[20:16] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): Haddow64 (haddow64): What do you

think of the quality of graduates from the current range of games programming

degrees out there?

Well they can be variable. Some of these degrees are very good - others not

so. The best degree advice we could offer would be to go for the traditional

comp sci course as it'll cover nearly all the fundementals that you need.
[20:16] abandon22: Palehorse864 (palehorse864): If you could criticize one

thing about your own games in general, what would it be, and what would you

do to improve it?

It always bothers me when games are launched and break on day one. Some of

our games - not all - have had pretty serious launch day bugs, and I find

that frustrating.
[20:16] <multiwinian (multiwinian) is now a member of group Moderator>
[20:17] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): [FIS]Rachel (raaachel): Was there

a person that you based Dr. Sepulveda upon?

But the actual guy that appeared in game was a friend that looked fairly

similar to Sir Clive and he agreed to star in the game in exchange for a

couple of pints :)
[20:18] abandon22: HAEC{Blade (123batesman123): When you were developing

Multiwinia, what was your main focus in order to make the game appeal to

people?

We spent a lot of time working on the usability of Multiwinia, trying to make

it as accessable to new players as possible. It's a really hard thing to get

right, and something we've focussed on heavily since Defcon.
[20:19] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): |Спэцтер (1specter1): okies, so

the first one from me - can we still call you the last garage studio or it

has already changed? :)

I guess it will change in time - it will certainly change if we get much

larger. We're now 10 people and it won't take that many more to shift the

feel from being a start-up / indie thing to being more serious. Not least

becuase we have the responsibility of keeping roofs over these people's

heads!
[20:19] abandon22: Tom (unit684): I haven't yet got multiwinia but am

definitely thinking about it. I am currently downloading the demo and have

played darwinia. What has improved in multiwinia from darwinia?

They are very different games. They are set in the same game world, but they

play very differently. Darwinia is story driven, arcade action. Multiwinia

is more strategic, and a lot faster to play. Less cerebral, more visceral
[20:20] abandon22: <{RaTz}>Wasgood (wasgood102): Can you tell us about

Subversion?

I can tell you that i'm back on Subversion as my primary focus, and i'll be

writing more about it on our blog soon (www.introversion.co.uk/blog)
[20:21] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): qapqap: Can you tell us anything

about chronometer?

Not a huge amount I'm afraid. But it would be a departure from our current

path becuase we would have many more resources which means that it would be

more graphical.
[20:21] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): but still retain the gameplay ;)
[20:23] abandon22: =36ID=1LT.Kolden (mattneed): Whos idea was it for the

characters image and does it mean anything in particular (also meaning the

logo for multiwinia)

The Darwinian was a placeholder sprite, supposed to look like a basic human

while we were developing the game. After a long time we got so used to the

sprite that we decided to base the whole game around him! The flat Darwinian

has tons of character and we've even adopted it as our company mascott /

logo.
[20:23] abandon22: € /|\ ù § ä И (emusan): About how much does it cost to

start your own indie-developer company? and what does most of that money go

to(compilers or just powering your systems)?

We started Introversion with £600, which was £200 each from three founding

Directors. You don't need much money at all to start an indie company - and

retaining control of ourselves since that day has been a high priority
[20:24] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): € /|\ ù § ä И (emusan): About how

much does it cost to start your own indie-developer company? and what does

most of that money go to(compilers or just powering your systems)?

We started Introversion in £600. We were lucky though becuase Chris brought

Uplink as a finished product to the table. We spent our first money on making

the CDs. Of course things are different now with online distribution. WRT

tools, I would recommend trying some of the free tools that are available.
[20:24] abandon22: itzmattu (itzmattu): How did you two get involved in the

game development business?

We all met at University and founded our company in the final year
[20:25] abandon22: jacxu (jacxu): At first I have to say i like Multiwinia

and Darwinia a lot ...it was my fisrt game which i bought :) music was

perfect im still listening to darwinia soundtrack do u have any connections

with Tresk Will he be ib yours upcoming games?

Tresk / Trash80 did all the music for Darwinia and it's really awesome stuff.

He was very generous in letting us raid his back catalog of music for use

throughout the game. I'd love to work with him again, but his music

specifically fitted Darwinia, so maybe, maybe not.
[20:27] abandon22: Bug (spacebuggles): Why did you pick the name

Introversion?

I had originally planned to launch the demo of Uplink under the name "The

Intro-Version", which I thought was an interesting play on the dominant

psychological makeup of hackers. But we ended up calling the company

Introversion Software, just because it suited who we were and evoked the idea

of cerebral games for the thinkers out there
[20:28] abandon22: itzmattu (itzmattu): For your new game, Subversion, how

much of a headache is it to work with procedurally generated content?

It's good and bad :) Sometimes you get a big mess, nothing that you can use.

But then you get the algorithms right, and suddenly a whole skyscraper pops

into existance. It's incredible how much complexity you can generate with

proc. gen.
[20:29] abandon22: [TCHS] Si (connected90): How does it feel having such a

huge fanbase? Did you expect to have such a following?

We love it, and we love coming up with things for them to do :) They've been

a great help with beta testing, and some of our staff are hired directly from

the community. We couldn't exist without them.
[20:30] abandon22: Poki#3 (poki3): Your earlier games (Uplink, Darwinia) are

pure Singleplayer, while the later games (Defcon, Multiwinia) are pure

multiplayer (bots don't count). What's the reason behind this shift? How do

you see your future games developing? Are you thinking maybe about making a

game with both types of gameplay?

No reason in particular, that's just the order they came out. Subversion and

Chronometer are both mostly single player game ideas, although I doubt we'll

make a game again that doesn't involve some multiplayer/online elements.
[20:31] abandon22: きにょう|Спэцтер (1specter1): I know that you already said

there won't be Uplink 2 or Uplink Online - but I will ask it once again,

maybe something has changed? Or at least are there going to be anymore Uplink

patches?

There are no plans for Uplink sequels, sorry! We like t make games, release

them, then move on
[20:32] abandon22: RabidZombie (rabidzombie): Have the sales for Multiwinia

picked up at all since "Save Multiwinia"? What about since the start of

Multiwinia Multinights?

Yes, a combination of different efforts by Introversion and our fans and

partners has made Multiwinia into a decent seller after all, i'm glad to say.

We had a lot of trouble attracting attention to the game initially, but we

turned it around in the end. We're certainly not in any immediate danger any

more.
[20:34] abandon22: Jelco (jelcogalactaboy): Multiwinia (combined with

Darwinia) is the first Introversion game to hit the consoles. Even though

Darwinia+ isn't released yet, you will already have some experience with how

the market differs from the PC market. Are your experiences so far reason to

back out of it, or to stay in, and for what reasons?

We love PC development, and it will always be our core platform. We thrive

in the freedom to do whatever we want, and that doesn't exist on the consoles

and closed platforms. So you may see many of our games making their way to

console, but PC is where it's at for us.
[20:35] abandon22: =36ID=1LT.Kolden (mattneed): Will it be possible for us to

make and add addons to multiwinia meaning make mods and other things like

alot of people do for FPS games?

We currently have a map editor and online exchange system in Beta, and our

community are testing it. We wanted to have this ready for day one, but

didn't quite manage it. Once it's launched you'll be able to make your own

maps, play other peoples custom maps etc.
[20:36] abandon22: Bug (spacebuggles): Do you guys ever play your own games

for fun, or are you tired of them by now?

I play games all the time, sometimes to the detriment of our own projects. I

freely admit that Darwinia was three months later than it should have been

because I was suffering pretty serious Anarchy Online addiction at the time.

Right now i'm loving Left4Dead and Fallout3.
[20:38] abandon22: oh sorry, just re-read that question
[20:38] abandon22: We play our games a lot during development, then generally

are so sick of them that we can't stand the sight of them for a few months :)

I like to watch Defcon games a lot. And Multwiwinia is still a lot of fun

to dip into - probably because it's such a quick game
[20:39] abandon22: AgentX (agentx24): Do you feel you have lost any of your

"indie charm" having moved "out of the bedroom" as you put it?

It's a tough question, but i'd asked to be judged by the games we make, and

nothing else. So we can't really be the judge of that.
[20:39] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): AgentX (agentx24): Do you feel

you have lost any of your "indie charm" having moved "out of the bedroom" as

you put it?

Well several things have changed. We have had to start thinking about how our

games will perform in the market as we have a team to sustain, but we also

have more resources and experience with which to make new games. I like to

think the charm is still there, but that it's slightly different to what it

was before.
[20:40] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): [12:19] RabidZombie (rabidzombie): How

well do you feel that betatesters perform. You mentioned launch day bugs

being fustrating. Do you think a more professional approach to QA would be

more efficient?
[20:40] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): oops! hehe. That was an accident. ^^
[20:40] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): nevermind chatteox!
[20:41] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): No matter, I'll answer that :)
[20:41] Introversion Chris (abandon22): good question :) We're perfectly

happy with our beta testers, they do a great job, but some of the really hard

stuff like Multiplayer just can't be tested fully without a rigorous formal

testing process. We're getting into that sort of thing now with Darwinia+.
[20:43] Introversion Chris (abandon22): <{RaTz}>Wasgood (wasgood102): How

difficult is it to build a multiplayer game compared to a single player one

like Darwinia (compared to Multiwinia or Defcon)?

It's a mixed bag. With a Multiplayer game you can play your game much

quicker, because you can get someone else to play the opposition. With a

single player game you have to write the game AI before you can really play

your game properly. The tech for reliable Multiplayer is however very tough,

and still gives major companies troubles even now (eg Left4Dead on launch)
[20:43] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): We would be totally sunk without

betatest community - they are a huge help. Our QA process has become better

and better over the years, and as Chris points out, we're now working with

the big men which is a very worthy challenge. I think everyone at IV would

agree though that Multiwinia was our most polished and best tested game.
[20:43] Introversion Chris (abandon22): lazor (lazorsam): Do you plan on

continuuing the Multiwinia/Darwinia series or starting a new IP?

We are doing Darwinia and Multiwinia for Xbox Live Arcade, but otherwise it's

onto the new projects - Subversion and Chronometer.
[20:45] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): =36ID=1LT.Kolden (mattneed): For

those developers/programmers here in these channels tom, what would you

suggest they do to make the best out of their carreers when it comes to

Programming, and getting into game development, even if its very basic game

programming. Meaning school wise.

It depends on whether you want to be a programmer. Almost certainly a

qualifiaction in computer science or something similar would be required, but

if you're not too keen on maths, you might want to consider a role as a

producer instead.
[20:45] Introversion Chris (abandon22): XFUBX (xfubx): In the development of

Defcon, Did you think it was important to make a multiplayer mode that could

last up to six hours (Office Mode)?

I just really fancied the idea of playing a game of Defcon in realtime, over

an entire day, in the background. What an awesome and epic idea!
[20:48] Introversion Chris (abandon22): bayesianmind: Uplink was famous for

its awesome easter eggs, like the game bibles and hidden servers. There seem

to be a lot of less of these in your newer games. Any plans on reviving some

of the fun puzzles of the past?

Yeah well Uplink's style suited hidden secrets very well, since it was all

about hacking and stealing and espionage. But I think we will see some

easter eggs starting to appear again in one of our upcoming games.
[20:48] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): Wasgood (wasgood102): What told

you to go for digital distribution and how did you try and counter the risks

that come with it?

For our products, retail was starting to slow and we were getting more and

more requests from customers who were asking to download products rather than

wait for them to be shipped. We started our own digital distribution system

in 2005, and wound up on Steam shortly after that. It was a necessary move.

As for risks - we managed to mitigate many of the piracy and rogue distrubtor

risks by the adoption of a key system.
[20:50] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): lazor (lazorsam): What's your

stance on DRM?

We don't like it. Over complicated and paranoid DRM just penalises paying

customers. We've never used intrusive DRM and wish other people didn't

either.
[20:50] Introversion Chris (abandon22): lazor (lazorsam): What's your stance

on DRM?

We actually take a different view to most, in that Pirate users are demo

players who have yet to be convinced. We consider the inevitable pirate

versions to be extended demos. It's the only sensible stance in the modern

world where any game can be copied at will.
[20:52] Introversion Chris (abandon22): Jelco (jelcogalactaboy): Chris has

said that a lot of game developers make the mistake of promising a lot and

not fulfilling those promises, and that he wished to avoid that while writing

the blog for Subversion. Despite this he's said that Subversion is the best

game Introversion will ever make. Is there a good reason for this feat of

courage (should we really be hoping for something amazing?) or are you

perhaps already regretting having said it?

I may come to regret that :) I never wanted to inflate expectations, and

i've been trying not to get over enthused about it in the blog, but what can

i say, it's just amazingly cool. I promise though, no more p.molyneux style

comments from me.
[20:52] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): =EAF= Master (Tom) (tommy0101):

do you think the economic downturn will upset the game industry?

No - it will definitely perform better than other areas of the economy. Games

are form of entertainment and represent much better value for money than most

other forms (e.g. movies / going out), so in harsh times, more people stay

and home and game sales go up. The weak Pound also makes for more back from

our overseas sales ;)
[20:52] Introversion Chris (abandon22): Tom (unit684): when will darwinia+ be

released?

It's out of our hands to some extent, and down to Microsoft, but there's

still a lot of work to do yet. We think Q2 next year.
[20:53] Introversion Chris (abandon22): colmy (colmy): Will you lauch a side

or sister company that conforms with mainstream gaming. just to ensure

revenue. if so will it ironically be called extroversion?

It's funny, we have considered that exact idea to raise funds for our crazy

games, but we'd call it Introspection software
[20:54] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): [12:54] Wasgood (wasgood102): How does

your company go in the way of advertising? Just word of mouth?
[20:54] Introversion Chris (abandon22): =EAF= Master (Tom) (tommy0101): Do

you think the appeal of your games is that ANY computer can run them really?

I think it's certainly a strong factor with games like Uplink and Defcon that

they run well on older machines and laptops. All of our games are written in

basic openGL as well, no extensions, so you get all the effects on full

regardless of your hardware.
[20:54] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): Mendes (mendes588): What did you

guys expected from co-operating with xfire? more succes?more people to

starting knewing introversion studios? Are you happy with ther results?

It seemed a logical fit given that many people on our own communities were

Xfire users. Naturally we hope to get more people playing Multiwinia and

Xfire has some good mechanisms for people being able to share opinions about

which games they're in to right now.. We're defo happy with the way things

are going so far. :)
[20:56] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): [FIS]Rachel (raaachel): Being

from the UK, do you plan on traveling to some of the gaming conventions in

the states or staying local?

We've been to GDC for the last 4 years in a row, and we had someone at Penny

Arcade this year too. We've been to quite a few overseas conferences though

I'm not sure what our plans are for nexy year. Will defo miss that weak

dollar and the cheap Corvette's in San Fran!
[20:57] Introversion Chris (abandon22): =HeL=Bazi (bazi): If you could go

back to the starting of your company, what would you change, knowing what you

do now?

I think if we knew how hard it would be, i'm not sure we'd have had the guts!

We were a bit young and crazy when we started Introversion, and that might

be the only way
[20:58] Introversion Chris (abandon22): Deathwolf132 (deathwolf132): would

you still make games if you went bankrupt?

Technically speaking I think we've been bankrupt twice already, or at least

we've certainly run out of money altogether twice so far. We're not doing

this for big money, and we're hits driven at the moment - we rely on each of

our games doing well
[20:59] Introversion Chris (abandon22): =EAF= Master (Tom) (tommy0101): does

this game provide full vista support?

In so far as _any_ game works fully under Vista, yes Multiwinia has full

Vista support
[20:59] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): itzmattu (itzmattu): What are

your views on the rising popularity of gaming colleges that give out

non-standard game development degrees. How do you feel these types of

graduates compare to a traditional CS student? (if you have had enough

experience to comment on it of course)

Hate to say it, but generally CS better prepares programmers for the rigours

of commerical production. We have someone from one of the game demopment

degrees and he's very good so it's certainly not that we'd never hire someone

from a game degree, but we would probably lean more towards a CS background.
[21:00] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): Tom (unit684): when will

darwinia+ be released?

Next year :)
[21:00] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): we can't say for sure... it's

dependent on a long QA process that we're not familiar with, but from a money

point of view the sooner the better!!
[21:01] Introversion Chris (abandon22): "If everything went the way you

always dreamed, where would you see introversion in 10 years?"

Four more games under the belt, each of them different and unique from the

others. And Introversion producing two games at once - stability and ability

to take risks without worrying about eating at the end of the month
[21:01] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): If everything went the way you

always dreamed, where would you see introversion in 10 years?"

got to be careful how I answer that - I'd like to see Introversion with a

stable foundation without having to compromise its creativity. An IV yacht

would be nice too.
[21:02] Introversion Chris (abandon22): always Tom with the Yachts and cars

:)
[21:02] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): :)
[21:02] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): Alright everyone. That's all the time we

have for Tom and Chris from Introversion! I hope you've enjoyed this Live

Chat today
[21:02] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): I'd settle for one in second life
[21:03] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): There are no prizes!
[21:03] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): J/K!
[21:03] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): Here are the prizes!
[21:03] Introversion Tom (introversiontom): anyway, thanks for your

questions! See ya online :)
[21:03] Introversion Chris (abandon22): thanks everyone!
[21:03] Introversion Chris (abandon22): my keyboard is now on fire from

typing!
[21:04] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): 4 Users win Introversion Anthology Tins

Featuring all four Introversion Games:
[21:04] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): Jelco
[21:04] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): Bug
[21:04] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): Mendes
[21:04] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): and
[21:04] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): EAF Master Tom!
[21:04] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): The Grand Prize Winners win an Anthology

tin and the AMBX premium kit
[21:04] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): and the winner is... Wasgood102!
[21:05] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): If you won a prize, please PM me on how

to claim it.
[21:05] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): Thanks everyone! Have a good

day/evening/night! I hope you had fun!
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kryptic
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Postby kryptic » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:14 pm

I very much enjoyed participating. I even got a question answered! My xfire nick is bayesianmind and I was asking about easter eggs. Glad to see there are going to be more in future games, I enjoyed the Uplink ones.
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Postby RabidZombie » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:26 pm

That certainly is not the whole chat.
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Lithilk
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Postby Lithilk » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:30 pm

Yes it is. It's his official answer chat. I copy'pasta'd it out.
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Postby estel » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:32 pm

You're missing the first 11 minutes :P
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Postby kryptic » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:37 pm

Lithilk wrote:Yes it is. It's his official answer chat. I copy'pasta'd it out.


How did you get the text out of the window with all that pasta? It must have been quite challenging.

(Xander hasn't posted here yet so I have to emulate him)
Last edited by kryptic on Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby RabidZombie » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:38 pm

Swifty edit.

You were missing the start.
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Postby jelco » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:38 pm

The chat and question rooms are not included of course, and they damn well shouldn't be! (SPAM!) ;)

I like many others am glad the amBX kit went to a community member, not an Xfire user who just happened to be in at the right time. Also, to clear up something about the beta tester spots:

Code: Select all

[20:44] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): Just to Clarify the Beta Testers:  There  are 120 spots.  100 spots go to people who have been Beta Tests for Introversion BEFORE.  The other 20 spots go to other people, including Xfire Users.
[20:44] [Xfire] Chatteox (chatteox): The spots go to the people who signed up first. but yeah that's how they're allocated

Something I, like many others (again) am very happy with. Finally, regarding me winning the anthology:

Code: Select all

[22:05] <+Jelco> I won the anthology but already own all games bar Uplink
[22:06] <+Jelco> so I'm going to keep that one and have the other three up as prizes for a Ladder contest

I later realized the anthology doesn't include Multiwinia, but other than "the other three" changing into "the other two" everything is exactly as it shows above. This is for real, you have my word. ;)

Jelco

PS: I will note at this point that the aforementioned upcoming contest will probably not be very soon, I don't want it to be too quickly after the Xfire event. ;)
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Postby estel » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:42 pm

Cyan.
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Postby Cyan. » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:49 pm

100 beta tester who had beta tested before O_o? How the fuck are you supposed to become one if they only give away 20 including those xfire users who don't even really care!

Anyway I should be in, because I was rather quick with signing in, any news on when you'll get to know if you're in?
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Postby estel » Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:22 pm

I guess that they aren't doing the beta until Q1/Q2 next year.
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Postby cheesemoo0 » Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:51 pm

My timezone has messed me up again. :(

Very interesting chat and congrats to all the winners!
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Postby Mattu » Fri Dec 05, 2008 8:11 pm

I think Introversion's intentions are good, but it is unfortunate that the beta testing slots are balanced as they are. I don't say this because I believe they should have a brand new batch of testers and throw away all the ones from the past that they have worked with, but rather because it is difficult to assess their fans simply from the community and previous beta testers. There is a difference between fans and fanboys after all, no offense.

I believe, as a fitting example, I can fill you in on my personal relationship with Introversion. I first came to love them back when Uplink was released. This was in my younger years of programming, and the whole cyber punk atmosphere really drew me in and interested me, and I loved the game. It was a while after this that they even released their next game, and already I was a fan. I heard of Darwinia one day, in an article mentioning it was made by the developers of Uplink, which immediately peaked my interest (at this point Introversion wasn't a name engraved in my head, but Uplink was). Having come a long way in my programming hobby, I was now more interested in the developer themselves and immediately started looking into the company, and was instilled with respect for how they were supporting themselves completely.

Then a few more years down the path, Defcon was released, and now Multiwinia. All of these I have bought and loved and done my best to promote to the people I know. At this point I am a sophomore computer science student (at the age of 22, so I have been actually programming for a long time, just took me a bit to get to university). Infact, you'll notice I have been a member for over 2 years of these forums, I have just not actively posted anything. I've been more of a casual reader from time to time. But I have a busy life. I develop my game designs in my spare time, play my favorite games in my other spare time, and work on school assignments and studying with most of my time. I, unfortunately, have missed beta signups in the past. This doesn't mean I'm not dedicated to Introversion, just that my priorities have hindered me from being here at the right time. This also doesn't mean I am not qualified to beta test. I worked at Rockstar New England over last summer in fact. Not as a beta tester, but as a scripter and doing some IT as well. I know the processes of bug reporting and all that jazz extremely well, as the studio was small and I spent a good amount of time over with the QA guys and gals.

Why am I telling you all this detail? To prove to you that just because you have all beta tested before, just because you have hundreds or thousands of posts on these forums, that doesn't mean I should be any less qualified than you. Clearly though, and most unfortunately, Introversion has no real way to decipher this kind of quality among people they have not interacted with before. I understand this, and this is why I am making this post.

Hello Introversion. My name is Matt. I am a computer science student at UMass Lowell, and vice president of the Game Developers Group here (also a co-founder). I was in the chat with you on XFire (under itzmattu) and would highly appreciate a chance to help you beta test your games. Thanks for the chat by the way ( http://gdg.uml.edu/iv ), it was wonderful to speak to you, as I have admired your dedication to being your own entity in the game development world. I don't think a lot of people appreciate the true difficulty of that feat. I look forward to the future products your company releases, and good luck in the development process.
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Postby RabidZombie » Fri Dec 05, 2008 8:30 pm

Mattu wrote:I think Introversion's intentions are good, but it is unfortunate that the beta testing slots are balanced as they are. I don't say this because I believe they should have a brand new batch of testers and throw away all the ones from the past that they have worked with, but rather because it is difficult to assess their fans simply from the community and previous beta testers. There is a difference between fans and fanboys after all, no offense.


I'd like to point out that, in the past, the number of non-regulars in the beta test has been quite high. But as you'd expect, many simply don't help at all. Not a single post. However, Introversion get a great response from the regulars who submit bug reports and are often around on the forum to help reproduce bugs and be available for games. They're also easy to communicate with on IRC, unlike those people who signed up for the beta test.

There's a reason why people who have beta tested in the past are more likely to get a place. They're considerably more likely to be helpful.

Of course, if you really want to beta test, why don't you try posting in the forum a bit, hang out in IRC, and try registering for the beta test (I expect when the test comes around, the good old sign up form will make an appearance).

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