A letter to Taleworlds...

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Glatix

Recruit
Dear Taleworlds,

Bannerlord is a sandbox game that was sold on the premise of mod-support, and yet the only thing that the modding community has to work with is a scene and asset editor. While such features are useful, they've created a situation in which massive overhaul mods like Kingdoms of Arda have to effectively halt their development until they can access the presently hard-coded aspects of the game.

All mods can do at the moment is layer features overtop of the existing game. Community bug-fixes for common issues are effectively impossible, databasing custom assets is volatile because monthly updates change the .xml lists, and mappers might work on a custom scene for a week only to find that assets used in it have been altered or removed.

Now, I understand why the full suite hasn't been released. Bannerlord is very much so still an early-access game, and the eventual goal is to present a stable vanilla build for modders to work with. In most cases, this type of situation is fine, but in a little under two months Bannerlord will have been out for an entire year. In that time, we've seen a myriad of bug fixes and balancing updates, but only a scant few additional features. It seems to me that the slow pace has been due to a focus on stabilizing the game itself, both in terms of gameplay and functionality. Take for instance, the dreaded snowball effect. It's been a problem since day 1, and to date it's STILL a problem.

It's abundantly clear that you're working to give us what was promised, but there's a better way! Place your focus on the release of modding tools, let the community handle the minor issues while you focus on implementing what's still needed.

What do I mean by that? Simple, give us a full modding suite and let the community go wild with the game. Let third parties work on bug-fixes to previously hard-coded problems, then copy their homework. Let them provide fixes and balance suggestions, then pick and choose what you like and implement it.

There's a really good line from Bannerlord's Steam Store page, and it reads as follows:

Early access is something that we are very familiar with: our first title, Mount & Blade, helped to pioneer this method of release back in 2005. By working alongside our community we were able to deliver a unique gaming experience that players still enjoy to this day. These past experiences have taught us that it is vital to bring players in to help us iron out any issues and refine the game by utilizing feedback to bring it to the level that both our community and we expect.

So please, consider letting us lend a hand. Many of us in the community are die-hard fans, and there's a myriad of scene/asset designers, bug-fixers, and playtesters out there who'd be more than willing to help make the game what it was meant to be.

Sincerely,

A fan
 

klinGiii

Squire
M&BWBNWVCWF&S
give us a full modding suite

Won't happen because you answered it yourself.

monthly updates change the .xml lists, and mappers might work on a custom scene for a week only to find that assets used in it have been altered or removed.

And that's because: Huray it's still in development.

I don't see the point why you writing this. You basically said : Gib modding powah !!1 - but in the same post you manage to explain why it will not happen until full release. The speed and some decisions of the whole EA thing here is worth another discussion ... but :

d63edd9af879f866baea5e3c5b506959.jpg
 

Glatix

Recruit
A decent proposal from a customer followed by a passive aggressive answer from a toxic fan boy, how typical.
People are certainly entitled to their opinions, as contrarian as some may be.

I think that Taleworlds has always remained close to their community, and while handing over the full suite might
Won't happen because you answered it yourself.



And that's because: Huray it's still in development.

I don't see the point why you writing this. You basically said : Gib modding powah !!1 - but in the same post you manage to explain why it will not happen until full release. The speed and some decisions of the whole EA thing here is worth another discussion ... but :

d63edd9af879f866baea5e3c5b506959.jpg
You may have misunderstood the original post. What I propose is for Taleworlds to lend us modding tools for the purpose of expediting development. Community bug fixes are common across a myriad of games (just look at the Bethesda community), and there's no reason why they can't be utilized here.

As it stands, Taleworlds has to single-handedly comb every update in search of bugs, balance issues, and other problems. The only outside help they receive is from the players who report these problems. This slows the development cycle by forcing Taleworlds to focus on bugs and balance instead of implementing more features.

Things like bug-fixes, scene mapping, asset design, and balance testing can all be aided by the community. Just look at the rebellion mechanic added in 1.5.6, it was heavily derived from a mod called Separatism. Taleworlds has always been great at using community ideas as a framework for features. Viking Conquest is another good example, as they used numerous features from the popular Diplomacy mod to add depth to the expansion.

My entire point is that the game IS unstable from update to update, which costs serious time by necessitating periods where the game's build needs to be rendered stable again. We can SAVE that time by simply allowing third party modders to crowdsource the busywork and let Taleworlds focus on giving us the features we want.

Of course, if you have an alternative solution, you're obviously free to make a suggestion!
 

Glatix

Recruit
A decent proposal from a customer followed by a passive aggressive answer from a toxic fan boy, how typical.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion, even the most contrarian among us. I for one have a lot of faith in Taleworlds. They've always been forward about wanting to listen to their community, and I sincerely hope that they'll let us lend a hand!
 
My entire point is that the game IS unstable from update to update, which costs serious time by necessitating periods where the game's build needs to be rendered stable again. We can SAVE that time by simply allowing third party modders to crowdsource the busywork and let Taleworlds focus on giving us the features we want.
Sorry but isn't "moddersupport" better invested in detailed bugreports and suggestions that can lay foundation and be understundable for feature/product owners without translation from a developer? How much time is not invested/wasted if the coding developer/tester/architect picks up the mod, tests it, finds it´s good, convinces a productowner it´s something worth implementing, merges in the code, rewrites it to fit the codestandards etc, tests it - probably extended tests is required if it´s something bigger and the merge casuses uncertainties(Not written by the implementing developer) etc etc. If we should help with maintenance work, we do need troubleshooting tools rather than pure modding tools. I would say implementing advanced code from a 3rd party takes longer time in total than write the code from scrash from a good requirement-document.

Features is another thing. Features is easer to explain and understund without understunding the code. A well described and thought through mod can definatly inspire a feature owner to create a full feathered requirement specification. From that, the developer can probably implement it without looking at the mod-code, following all standards.

As a software developer, I know the solutions provided from product-owners(hopefully supported by developer analyses) is allways better than things we throw at them, that they don't understund(above the value it would give).

I´m all pro extended modding-tools but understunds if the game has higher prio than modding tools :smile:
 
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