Roadmap - Improved Progress Information

Discussion in 'Train Sim World Discussion' started by Daytona, Mar 2, 2022.

  1. Daytona

    Daytona Active Member

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    Hello DTG Natster

    I feel that the 95% of reasonable people are not being given more progress information out of DTGs fear of wilful misinterpretation by the 5% of deeply unreasonable people.

    I'm interested in the progress on steam, but this could equally apply to any DLC -

    On the roadmap stream and in the next article, could we have some indication of progress ?
    I don't want to put pressure on the devs, so a conservative indication is fine - I wouldn't expect to be told it's any more than 90% complete until release date has been locked in, days? before.

    A percentage is a nice vague general measure. Or, for the route, tiles that are 95% complete, ie ready for release, but you can tinker forever. So % ready for release is probably a more sensible measure that % complete.

    It's probably not sensible, but it would be nice to have some granular indication for what are (I guess) the major elements -
    Rolling stock -
    graphics
    physics
    timetabled AI
    Route -
    landscape
    assets
    Signalling
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2022
  2. ARuscoe

    ARuscoe Well-Known Member

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    Put a percentage on it and people then start tracking back dates and putting forward dates on release, then get "deeply unreasonable" when those dates don't happen

    We've seen the models, we've seen the simugraph, we've seen the layout of the route. So work out your percentage from there
     
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  3. stujoy

    stujoy Well-Known Member

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    Imagine our surprise when it is revealed that DTG release their DLC when it is only 85% finished ;)

    On a more serious note, it doesn’t really make a difference how they present their progress to us, or not, as it makes little difference to when we can get hold of it, therefore the release date (when it is known) is the only true measure of progress for us. It’s nice to know what they are working and it gives us things to look forward to but we don’t need to know every step of the process. Imagine how tediously slow it would have been if they had given incremental updates in percentages of the development of steam since it was first announced.

    As they tell us quite frequently on live streams, scheduled dates and progress in all aspects of development is fluid and things change all the time. That’s why they have reduced the detail in the roadmap and it’s not because of unreasonable people it’s because they were unintentionally misleading us a lot of the time. There’s maybe less to get excited about in the roadmap but there’s arguably less to get worked up about too if you accept that it it’s no longer a running commentary.
     
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  4. redrev1917

    redrev1917 Well-Known Member

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    Look they can't either be bothered to include a breakdown of what each route code stands for, meaning you've got to navigate to another page to work it out. Which is PIA on a mobile device.

    If they can't be bothered to copy and paste a sentence into the roadmap to aid user friendliness then getting any further information out of them is unlikely.
     
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  5. Crosstie

    Crosstie Well-Known Member

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    I don't see the problem. We know which routes are planned for the near and medium term. We know the beginning and end points. We know the motive power that's coming with them. It's not difficult for us to look at the real world routes and picture what they should look like in the game.

    The only unknowns are the release dates. Those dates are never revealed until the routes are 1 or 2 weeks from launch.

    DTG said in the latest roadmap that, and I paraphrase, " we would like to share more information on progress, watch this space. ". That simply means some WIP screenshots and articles about route building. We've always had those and we'll have them again.

    And why are some people so obsessed with " codes "? They're not important to me. I still don't know what they mean and I imagine most of us couldn't care less.

    And, by the way, opening a thread with " Hello, DTG Natster " is just plain silly and a little rude. We're talking to each other, not DTG employees. Tagging the moderators has become epidemic on the forums. It used to be verboten.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2022
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  6. PeteW

    PeteW Member

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    Daytona I put i to you this is a bad idea for everyone concerned. Here is my thinking
    1. After having worked in a Software Dev (not games) environment for more years than I would like to admit to, it is not uncommon for it to take as long to do the last 10%. Basically people think they are 90% done when they aren't really. Also you often find a least one task that you estimate to take X time and takes way more. So that also messes up that estimation. So if the players think it is coming, they will only be disappointed if it does not happen.
    2. It will potentially put pressure on DTG to release earlier if an expectation has been set that it is nearly done when it isn't really. This could lead to a less than bug-free experience. Bad all round
    3. I want to buy a new DLC. I see steam is 95% complete. I'll just wait for that. If I didn't know it was coming, I might buy an older DLC to tide me by. So announcing something like this means less revenue for DTG and probably ends up meaning DLCs will cost more in the long run as people are buying less than they would have.

    Just my 2p.
     
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  7. solicitr

    solicitr Well-Known Member

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    It takes less than three minutes to memorize it. It's not like it's an Enigma machine!
     
  8. solicitr

    solicitr Well-Known Member

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    Basic law of engineering and project management (not just software): the first 90% of the work takes 90% of the time, and the remaining 10% of the work takes the other 90% of the time.
     
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  9. redrev1917

    redrev1917 Well-Known Member

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    Sure great unless you have issues which affect short term memory retention.
     
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  10. Thelonius16

    Thelonius16 Well-Known Member

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    I'm sure the codes are useful for internal purposes, but there isn't really a good reason to add a confusing code to user-facing marketing materials.

    If a DLC has specific relevant characteristics that matter to people, then they should just say so.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2022
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  11. ARuscoe

    ARuscoe Well-Known Member

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    Doesn't make much difference if they use a code (which people can google) or a worded response to be honest. People are generally savvy enough to be able to look things up (or come to a forum and ask)
     
  12. Crosstie

    Crosstie Well-Known Member

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    I agree entirely. As I said earlier, I have never paid any attention to them and I haven't missed anything. For a game with just a few dlc at any one time, they are unnecessary.
     
  13. Mich

    Mich Well-Known Member

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    A big problem with giving out percentages is that you rarely get everything you set out to do. Even large games with all the manpower and money and their side will still need to scale back on their initial goals. For example when Super Mario 64 was shown off back in 1995 it was considered about 30 percent complete at the time by Nintendo. However the initially plans for it were to have 40 levels, but in the final game it was cut all the way back to 15 levels instead due to the need to have it out for the N64 launch in 1996. The percentage was actually closer to 60 to 80 percent complete when factoring in the cuts they ended up making.

    Point being you need a unmovable goalpost when it comes to saying how complete a project is. And more often than not the goalpost will tend to be moved at least once or twice during development of software. For example Sherman Hill as is probably would've been considered only 60 to 70 complete when factoring in track 3, which was a part of the initial plan. Not to mention there's areas on a lot of these routes which clearly weren't given the level of polish that was originally planned. Going back to Sherman the Granite mine is very unpolished, and could've easily done with a few more weeks of work on its own.
     
  14. DTG Natster

    DTG Natster Producer Staff Member

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    A % sharing the progress is a lovely idea, unfortunately it's not something we are able to do.

    Even internally we don't gauge how ready a route or loco is in percentages, and if we were to put something like to the community it could be highly inaccurate.

    We are however planning on updating the Roadmap to deliver more information from our Developers on the progress of our projects.
     
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