Author Topic: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10  (Read 12589 times)

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Offline IPAndrews

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
Having read flipsides response I can declare my position.

I remain very much opposed to this mod in it's full form.

My reason for being opposed is simple. As far as I am concerned there is an enormous risk involved in this work with little or no reward for the end user.

Let me quantify the risk:
  • Introduction of arbitrary pof bugs due to the "recompile of most models" as stated by Flipside. Recompiling a model is a huge undertaking and it took us long enough to find a stable version of PCS when we did it the first time. The potential for damage here literally cannot be underestimated. It's enormous. And the bugs won't always be easy to spot either. This statement alone by Flipside catapults this from being s small patch mod/fix mod/repair mod (whatever your chosen terminology is) to a major update.
  • Loss of backward compatability due to table changes. As there is little detail about the table changes backward compatability cannot be guaranteed. Leading to the possibility of campaign/mission problems and support hell as discussed earlier
  • Lack of accountability of the patch makers should something go wrong. Such a major update requires a full time team, and I will not sanction handing over TBP to a new full time team. The team decided to finish TBP. It must remain finished.

Weighing against this we have the positives:

"It offers considerable benefit to the user" says Flipside but I still haven't read any quantification of this past mention of "creeping errors". Hardly convincing. In the SCP forum their team talks about crashes and bugs, but when pressed Karajorma admits TBP isn't really buggy. There really is nothing here to fix. Except the SCP getting some warnings when they try to debug that annoy them. Is it worth all the risks above to remove some warnings for the SCP team? Especially when they are quite capable of implementing their own internal update which would solve their problems whilst not exposing TBP to the risks listed above. I think not.

I appreciate this won't make me popular but I think it's the sensible choice. It has nothing to do with ego, or control, it has to do with maintaining the quality of the work my team spent to much time on, and affording them and their decisions the respect they deserve.
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Offline Vidmaster

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
Well, there aren't so many problems for the players at the moment. Our 3.6.9 game mostly works fine. Multiplayer wouldn't be officially supported I guess. What doesn't mean of course that we wouldn't try to help people getting it running.

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Regarding Battuda:
IP, I agreed on the last post but this one is different. We are all grown ups here remember?  :)
If you dislike his attitude, you may of course ignore him. As I said silly posts with no good reason behind them will be removed, NO MATTER THE AUTHOR. That previous post wasn't. Let's discuss the matter at hand.

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« Last Edit: February 13, 2009, 03:44:59 pm by Vidmaster »
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Offline DaBrain

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
Having read flipsides response I can declare my position.

I remain very much opposed to this mod in it's full form.

My reason for being opposed is simple. As far as I am concerned there is an enormous risk involved in this work with little or no reward for the end user.

Let me quantify the risk:
  • Introduction of arbitrary pof bugs due to the "recompile of most models" as stated by Flipside. Recompiling a model is a huge undertaking and it took us long enough to find a stable version of PCS when we did it the first time. The potential for damage here literally cannot be underestimated. It's enormous. And the bugs won't always be easy to spot either. This statement alone by Flipside catapults this from being s small patch mod/fix mod/repair mod (whatever your chosen terminology is) to a major update.
  • Loss of backward compatability due to table changes. As there is little detail about the table changes backward compatability cannot be guaranteed. Leading to the possibility of campaign/mission problems and support hell as discussed earlier
  • Lack of accountability of the patch makers should something go wrong. Such a major update requires a full time team, and I will not sanction handing over TBP to a new full time team. The team decided to finish TBP. It must remain finished.

Weighing against this we have the positives:

"It offers considerable benefit to the user" says Flipside but I still haven't read any quantification of this past mention of "creeping errors". Hardly convincing. In the SCP forum their team talks about crashes and bugs, but when pressed Karajorma admits TBP isn't really buggy. There really is nothing here to fix. Except the SCP getting some warnings when they try to debug that annoy them. Is it worth all the risks above to remove some warnings for the SCP team? Especially when they are quite capable of implementing their own internal update which would solve their problems whilst not exposing TBP to the risks listed above. I think not.

I appreciate this won't make me popular but I think it's the sensible choice. It has nothing to do with ego, or control, it has to do with maintaining the quality of the work my team spent to much time on, and affording them and their decisions the respect they deserve.

I don't agree with this either.

There are issues that cause problems for the end user.
The  important thing is to make sure the patch doesn't break anything that worked before.

At worst, I expect some minor tweaks in a few missions need to be made. Still a dedicated tester crew needs to be found and has to give the patch a go before it can be released to the public.

In my eyes, the whole mod idea is a way too dirty solution, causing a lot of new problems, an official patch would not.
A mod might seem better than having bugs in TBP and loosing the SCP support, but it certainly isn't the best solution for the end-user.


I'll repeat myself, but keep in mind that the patch needs to be primarily made for the end user.

@Angelus
I don't think there is a good solution for this, which works for the SCP* and TBP equally well...
That's why I oppose the whole mod idea.


*That's just me guessing here. Not any kind of SCP statement.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2009, 03:58:03 pm by DaBrain »
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Offline FUBAR-BDHR

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
First is there any reason this couldn't be done in stages?  Fix the simple table stuff first and worry about the big stuff down the road.  I agree with IP that trying to recompile all that stuff isn't just a patch but a major change.  If it is to be done lets take it in small chewable bites.  Start with anything that can be done via .tbm. 

3.4b and 3.6.9 will always be there and always be playable the way it is.  People can still develop and play with 3.6.9.  We already have a disclaimer that 3.6.9 is the last supported build for single.  3.6.10 is only going to be officially supported for multi.  The patch could be the same.  Only officially supported for multi.  The mod is on a use at your own risk for single just like 3.6.10 is on a use at your risk basis now. 


BTW I have used the VE Dreadnought and it didn't crash 3.6.9 single.  It does however crash multi but only when a client respawns.  Haven't tried it in 3.6.10 multi but I'm pretty sure I've tried it in 3.6.10 single. 
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Offline IPAndrews

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
BTW I have used the VE Dreadnought and it didn't crash 3.6.9 single. 

You're talking about one bug FUBAR, which manifests half the time, and it's in the FAQ under known issues. The model came from 3D Studio max and the geometry was dodgy. It's always been unstable. It wouldn't even compile until I'd done significant work on it. You're lucky it works in single player mate :).
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Offline karajorma

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
In the SCP forum their team talks about crashes and bugs, but when pressed Karajorma admits TBP isn't really buggy. There really is nothing here to fix.

Actually I said that there are bugs, especially in multiplayer. I said they're not common which means you can't claim that the game is buggy because you can't be certain which bugs are SCP and which are TBP and I don't much like blaming someone else for mistakes that are mine.

That however is from an end user point of view. For a FREDder there are a whole lot more problems. Things like the Vorlon Dreadnought being basically unusable don't affect the end user because they'll never see a mission with one in.
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Offline General Battuta

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
He's not mediating Kara. He's not impartial in any way. He's already stated he's happy with the way things are headed which has revealed his preferred outcome. Besides we are all grown ups here we don't need to be hand held by some random bloke off the street. Now stop encouraging him.

I said I was happy with the direction things were headed. I didn't mean that I favored one side over the other.

I meant that I was happy we seemed to be moving towards agreement, rather than disagreement; i.e. FUBAR suggested an arrangement can be reached.

I don't particularly understand why you're lashing out at me; I love TBP, I was glad to hear it had been finalized, and I'm eager to help however I can. In this case, it seems like most people want a neutral third party involved, and I happened to stumble into that role.

However, I can definitely understand why you wouldn't want some random individual trying to tell both sides how to behave; that can certainly be irritating. I'll try to avoid that.

ANYWAY.

It seems like these are the problems on the two sides right now:

The SCP can't troubleshoot any problem with TBP right now because all the various minor errors are cluttering things up. There's no way to tell if an issue is caused by models or by code.

TBP (IPAndrews, in particular) has reached a point where the game is stable for the end user under 3.6.9, and sees no profit in potentially introducing further bugs by delving back into the models. Additionally, I get the sense IPAndrews put a ton of work into the game and feels that his efforts largely weren't appreciated or supported by the SCP crew.

If that's generally correct, I'm not really sure how to proceed. Maybe the SCP guys should simply leave TBP alone, since they can't troubleshoot problems, and trust that the 3.6.9/3.4b combo really is stable.

On the other hand, a mod-patch doesn't seem like it would be wildly difficult, since it appears that it could be made by fans for free, and if it caused problems, people could simply not use it.

It seems like there's a lot of bad blood out there between the two parties. Is there any way we can step beyond it?
« Last Edit: February 13, 2009, 05:41:02 pm by General Battuta »

 

Offline DaBrain

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
The solution is simple.

IPAndrews has stated his reasons why he doesn't want a patch. We only need to make sure none of these things happens.

All that need to be made sure is that the patch doesn't break anything, which is in the best interest of the end users.
Which means the patched version needs to be tested extensive to make sure it works the same way the previous version did.

IPAndrews also made clear that he doesn't want the patch to make any "improvements" to the actual game, so everybody involved in the work for the patch needs to restrain themselves to bugfixing(!)

Finally the SCP should try to keep the virtually bug-free TBP compatible with new build as long as possible.



Btw, this is my last comment on this. I hope you guys pick a solution that is best for the players, TBP and SCP in the end.
I'm off to fix some problems in SoL now.


This would mean full multiplayer support for TBP, even less crashes and problems and a longer lifetime for TBP. It also means the SCP coders can fix TBP-related code bugs in Mantis way easier.

This should be the best solution for all parties. And I hope this patch will be declared official, if doesn't change the actual game.

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Offline chief1983

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
The biggest problem I'm seeing is that the lack of compatibility with the TBP 3.4b core and SCP 3.6.10 essentially means the dropping of multiplayer support for an unmodified TBP 3.4b, because of the shutting down of the multiplayer support for 3.6.9 itself.  Obviously we can't un-support TBP in 3.6.9, it's already released and finalized as well, but when the FS2NetD servers stop working for 3.6.9, TBP-3.6.9 multi will die.  That leaves using 3.6.10, somehow, as the only real solution (and hopefully it will be preferred because of all the multiplayer enhancements).  I don't want to see TBP multi die with all the recent effort that's been put forth by some prominent members.
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Offline IPAndrews

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
This is over people.

I gave the SCP team a fair opportunity to state their case. I considered it on it's merits and gave you a fully justified decision. I am happy it's the correct decision. You all know that it's my call to make. If you have any honour you'll respect it.

What's more I don't want this to be raised again. Plenty of times I've been in a position where a decision has been made, respected for a short while, and eventually respect has been conveniently forgotten and the debate has been restarted. So for that reason I am stating now that I do not give permission for any of my work to be used in any patch, fix, repair, upgrade or any other form of continuation of TBP, and I've touched every part of TBP. I'm sure there are many slippery ways of circumventing my wording there but in the end it's down to honour. You know what I'm saying.

As for future support for TBP from the SCP team... TBP works fine for the end user in 3.6.9. All we expect from 3.6.10 is that it will work no worse than it does in 3.6.9. Hopefully you are taking backward compatability seriously so that should not be an issue even if TBP is not officially supported by your team. In the end it's the SCP team's choice.
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Offline General Battuta

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
I just want to note that the SCP has always, so far as I can tell, been concerned with backwards compatibility above all else -- 'not breaking retail' has been their watchword since day 1.

So I don't think you have any concerns on that front.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2009, 07:13:33 pm by General Battuta »

 

Offline Bobboau

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
[edit]removed useless text[/edit]

I totally support the 'no improvement' mantra, I can accept treating TBP as the retail release, equivalent to the box we all bought that had FS2 in it. as you may remember Volition released two patches for there final product, and I don't even know how many for FS1.

it makes perfect seance that no improvements to the content be made, that can be done in a mediaVP style mod, it's a totally separate issue. what needs to be addressed is fixing the problems.

I would also be fine with staged fixes, but it seems getting one patch out the door is going to be hard enough, so a whole stream of them seems unlikely.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2009, 07:22:34 pm by Bobboau »
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Offline FUBAR-BDHR

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
Well it seems we've come to an impasse.  There will be no patch as we have no rights to modify the data needed for there to be one. 

Personally I'll be finishing up a mission on two and will continue to try to answer questions.  I can't see continuing the development of multiplayer missions at this point. 
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Offline Bobboau

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
it might seem that way, to the untrained eye, but somehow I have a feeling this isn't the end of this. he wasn't the only person who put a lot of work into this project, I don't see how he can make unilateral decisions like that.
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Offline FUBAR-BDHR

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
This thread will not degrade into personal attacks.  I've deleted several posts already and am getting tired of it.  Keep it civil or take it elsewhere. 
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Offline Herra Tohtori

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
Just an ignorant impartial view on the matter here.

If someone uses TBP Final (3.4b) with a 3.6.10 executable instead of the provided 3.6.9 executable, isn't it changing the game significantly from the Final version already?

If fixes are needed for 3.6.10 (single or multiplayer) to work, they should be offered as a mod for people who want to play with 3.6.10 build.

If there are things that would need fixing with the 3.6.9 build as well, I can not see any reason why a modfix shouldn't be done, even though I can understand some reluctance regarding "unofficial" patch, but 3.6.10 is not part of the Final release anyway, correct?


Dropping 3.6.9 multiplayer (which will eventually happen if I have comprehended correctly) will mean that TBP final as it's distributed form (with 3.6.9 build) will not work in any case. Anyone who wants to play multiplayer will need to use a 3.6.10 build to begin with, unless they just play IP games, or someone puts up a TBP lobby server separate from the FS2netD... Changing the executable is the first thing that will change the configuration of the game, and that alone in my opinion is a LOT more radical change from the Final version than applying a mediaVP style patch.



I dunno, this argument just doesn't feel like it makes much sense. As far as advantages and disadvantages for a mod patch go, I can see these:

+Improved chances of using a debug build. This might not be a direct advantage for end users but it sure as hell is that for anyone who FREDs or makes any add-on mods for TBP, and after the fact it would benefit end users as well since they would be more likely to get bug-free campaigns and missions faster since it would be easier for their authors to debug them.

+Improved stability and accuracy (no fractal-style turrets etc.) for certain models, which would definitely be a benefit for the end user as well as mission designers and modders.

+Multiplayer compatibility (after 3.6.9 support goes away) and stability.

-A risk of losing backward compatibility for some user-made content or even official campaigns, if something that was configured to use broken model in an incorrect way to produce a right result will not produce a right result with a fixed model.


The way I see it, the pros are substantial and cons are manageable provided that the fix is tested properly, preferably with some user-made campaigns as well as the official two campaigns and multiplayer missions. Feel free to correct any wrong information in this post or ignore it.
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Offline StarSlayer

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
From a impartial observers perspective without a vested interest in the project, I might make a suggestion.

If there is no current need to mod/fix/patch whatever in the immediate future it probably would be worth tabling the issue for a couple weeks even a month if time allows.  Right now it seems everyone is wound up tighter then a drum.  I have observed two rather vitriolic threads dealing with this issue which was quickly followed by this thread exploring the further options.  Exploring options is always going to be a bit tricky but the fact that there has been no time to cool down means both sides have entered this process with frayed nerves.  Given time to loosen up and mull over the possible options returning to this discussion might be more productive. 

Have cessation on discussing this issue on the boards for two weeks, discuss the situation with your respective teams and open up the discussion again with a fresh start.  Quite frankly it seems both sides have the best interest of the project at heart but have came at the problem in the most frakked up angle possible and its spun out of control.  If you give it a little time you can probably come up with a compromise that preserves the work that has already been accomplished and secures the compatibility and end user experience of the game in the future.  However, if you folks continue this debate in the fashion it has been without a break then your not going to be able to reach a solution that will benefit the legacy of TBP.

Even if you think its a stupid idea and I a nosy wanker who should mind his own business, right now if no compromise can be met the legacy of this project is going to be tarnished by this little FUMTU argument and both the project and the HLP community as a whole will be lesser for it.


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Offline General Battuta

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
I think that's an excellent idea.

 

Offline VERTi60

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
I'll throw my two cents as a "TBP ending user" which is reasonable because I mostly play and record TBP.

As a fan of TBP I'm ofcourse sad of the recent events and I'm not happy about the "option" of dropping TBP multiplayer. I'll guess I'm not the only one here as I've read other replies very carefuly. Yeah I can be confident that the stable 3.6.9 will work for singleplayer as always, but it will only work for the campaigns that were done in the past (which most of the TBP fans have already played). But I'm also looking forward for campaigns that will rise up in future using new 3.6.10 features. So in short, if there's no 3.6.10 support anymore, there will be (most likely) no multiplayer, no new (mostly multiplayer but also some singleplayer because of lack of support) campaigns. That's almost like pulling out the plug from the ever growing TBP (mainly fan) community.

I can understand both parties however, everyone has their own reasons and their fixed policies to preserve.

But anyway, let's think what's best for TBP and basically for everyone involved. Let's be realistic. Let the good proposals and compromises rise again and let's discuss what's good and what really is the bad or just leave the bad out of it.

TBP has still the big potential of becomming of something greater than it is. There are still many B5 fans out there and many FS2 fans that doesn't know about TBP yet. And the majority of fans that do know about TBP still have their faith about what can still be done to their favourite game. TBP team knows it, fan community knows it and also SCP team knows it. Let's think of it this way. Let's not burn down bridges between the good and let's look into a future a little.

I'm still hoping that a solution will be made because there are many clever and resourceful developers around in HLP. If you need time, take it, if you need privacy take it. This discussion doesn't need to be completely public and doesn't need to be resolved asap. What StarSlayer proposed.

Anyways whatever the final resolution will be, I personally have faith that the multiplayer and new campaigns for TBP will continue, for the sake of the fan community and for the sake of the TBP's potential. Multiplayer is the key to bring up a new live community to support your work and play your game. 
« Last Edit: February 13, 2009, 10:50:46 pm by VERTi60 »
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Offline FUBAR-BDHR

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Re: Concepts/Rules for fan-created update to TBP for SCP 3.6.10
In my current drunken state one thing just occurred to me that I feel is appropriate:


"The Babylon Project was our last, best hope for peace. It failed"


With that I lock the thread until 2261 or at least until Vid wakes shows up to unlock it and moderate.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2009, 01:24:59 am by FUBAR-BDHR »
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