DICE: Battlefield 4 Beta Testers Are "Objectively Wrong" On Faults

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DICE: Battlefield 4 Beta Testers Are "Objectively Wrong" On Faults

battlefield 4 screenshot

DICE producer Patrick Bach says the beta build is "well out of date" and that testers "aren't playing the actual game".

The Battlefield 4 beta, while fun, has been criticized for being pretty laden with bugs, and balance flaws, especially considering that the game will launch later this month. However, DICE producer Patrick Bach says that as well as these critiques being "objectively wrong," testers are also playing a long-outdated version of the game. What was the point of the beta then? Stress testing the game, says Bach, "so that you don't end up in a Rockstar situation where the game doesn't actually work on day one."

"And it's actually quite scary to see how objectively wrong people can be. Because they want to win, personally, therefore they claim the thing that prevents them from winning is a design flaw or a bug or something."

Bach said that in the past, when DICE was not as experienced as it was today, it would design patches and updates based on internet rage, which made its games worse because player perception is inaccurate. "It's in our interest to keep the game balanced and stable and find the right things to tweak to keep things on top. If people are only using one gun in the game, the game is probably broken," he said.

"I saw people saying 'oh, you haven't fixed the problems you had in 3 because there are too many snipers,' and it's like no, we can see on the data that you are objectively wrong about this thing."

As for the bugs and glitches, "we're trying to compare our list of feedback and bugs with the list we're getting from the community," says Bach. "While we know that what people are playing isn't the latest game, it's one or two months old, we're comparing notes on what is already fixed."

So what do you think? Does this ease your concerns about the game? Were you unimpressed by the beta?

Source: Gamesindustry.biz via VG24/7

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the beta would never connect for me, so i can't objectively comment. although i'm not wrong about my bug, the game wouldnt fucking load

So basically, he gave away what we already know. Its a marketing BETA.

Pretty sure they are just lying and we will see a big pile of crap at release. Unsurprised though, this happens with EA subsidiaries.

EDIT: What they are saying in a nutshell

Oh, Our game isn't bad. Its the players! Not only do they not know good content when it smacks them in the face, but we also gave them a old outdated version for the beta because we KNOW its amazing no matter what anyone says.

I will be amazed if a lot of people actually buy this.

I mean fucking hell people, the last modern warfare battlefield was released TWO YEARS AGO.

at least the waited 6 years between 2 and 3

Yes insulting your fans is a great strategy DICE. Keep it up.

Desert Punk:
I will be amazed if a lot of people actually buy this.

I mean fucking hell people, the last modern warfare battlefield was released TWO YEARS AGO.

at least the waited 6 years between 2 and 3

Sadly the people who buy CoD every year will have no problem buying Battlefield only two years after the last one.

Steven Bogos:
What was the point of the beta then? Stress testing the game, says Bach, "so that you don't end up in a Rockstar situation where the game doesn't actually work on day one."

Otherwise known as a 'Maxis situation'.

Or even better, a 'DICE situation'.

Pot kettle glass houses etc.

Honestly... I'm at a loss for words here...

There is just so much rampant idiocy in that one statement alone, that I don't know how to address it at all...

In order to test the game, you have players playing a Beta build of it, yet you claim its only really to stress the servers, and that any and all the bugs they are finding right now don't really exist... Yet by that very act, they aren't stress testing anything. Should their "miracle" client be released and played, the stress on that alone will be likely to produce a good deal of bugs. Bugs that would of been caught had they done the sensible thing and RELEASED an updated client.

The last thing you ever do is give people an, as purely an example here, alpha build and tell them that is beta. It not only creates a bunch of negative PR which will ultimately hurt you, but it's boneheaded and just plain... stupid, for a lack of a nicer term than what I wanted to use...

I guess all I can really say is... Good job Dice. You've made the average Call of Duty player appear more intelligent than you. And by "average CoD Player", I mean "Whiny brattish 12 year old who has no purpose playing the game" player.

I can see him largely being right on this one, but I wouldn't totally blame the players. If the beta was intended as more of a stress test and general performance test, that's cool. Betas don't really exist in the same state that they used to though. For players, now, it's all about the early access. They are looking to win and to get a leg up on those players who won't be playing until launch. And, as anyone who even remotely makes note of competitive games will attest to, the first thing people do complain about is that one thing that they repeatedly get beaten by.

Basically, this is a mess caused by the current state of what Beta means, and has ended up there due to a mix of obscured developer intent and questionable player interest when they get early access.

StriderShinryu:
I can see him largely being right on this one, but I wouldn't totally blame the players. If the beta was intended as more of a stress test and general performance test, that's cool. Betas don't really exist in the same state that they used to though. For players, now, it's all about the early access. They are looking to win and to get a leg up on those players who won't be playing until launch. And, as anyone who even remotely makes note of competitive games will attest to, the first thing people do complain about is that one thing that they repeatedly get beaten by.

Basically, this is a mess caused by the current state of what Beta means, and has ended up there due to a mix of obscured developer intent and questionable player interest when they get early access.

This is why I stopped even applying for Beta's, a vast majority of the time players dont give two shits about finding bugs, exploits, or glitches and reporting them but instead get 'OMG, EARLI AXXESS!".

Open betas rarely ever work, and it makes people that actually try to beta test games get headaches from hell dealing with players that just want to play a game early.

I will say this though, Engineers were really bullshit in BF3, their weapons had the accuracy of assault rifles or better with the mobility of the PDW's.

Not even going to complain about the AT/AA rockets, that's a staple of the class, but I swear if they dont tone down Engi specific weapons then I doubt it will be a good multiplayer experience.

Yeah, because DICE's reputation of releasing a game in a better state on launch than it was in the Beta is so well know. I mean, Bad Company 2 totally didn't have a horrible Ping problem on launch! Oh, and I hear Medal of Honor didn't even need an extra patch to fix the PC server issues, not to mention the fact that it was the most balanced game imaginable where the Sniper was perfectly balanced. Battlefield 3 was even better! In fact...yeah, I'm going to stop with the sarcasm now. DICE is hardly one to target Rockstar about server issues. Heck, DICE takes time to stress-test their servers and they still are near unplayable for many people on launch.

But yeah, I see Bach is continuing to keep it classy, insulting DICE's competition every chance he gets, but not in the friendly way of the first Bad Company. Never mind the fact that he still views DICE as some god of gaming that can never go wrong and that the fans are really only ever complaining about non-issues. Oh, and never mind the fact that he loves flaunting his elite status over them all the time.

And people wonder why I hate DICE so much. It isn't enough to dumb down their games to give it wider appeal. They have to insult everyone else, especially their long-time fans, while they do it.

People seem to always have such difficulty with reading comprehension, and the attention-grabber title of the article doesn't help either. From about five seconds of reading it becomes obvious he's talking about people being objectively wrong about CERTAIN THINGS SUCH AS BALANCE ISSUES FOR EXAMPLE.

What this means in layman's terms is that a random forum poster screaming "omg nerf X because it's overpowered" is objectively just wrong and is in fact just not very good at the game. It's seen in every single online game ever, and while sometimes the concerns are legit - sometimes they are not, and the people complaining are, and I quote: "Objectively wrong".

Come on, people. At least read into the damn article before you start panicking over "DICE insulting its customers :OOO"

The BF4 Beta sucked, not because of the bugs but just because the gameplay isn't good. There's no lean, that context sensitive lean doesn't fucking count. There's no slide. The aim-assist was basically auto-aim. The gunplay just wasn't very good, that's why the beta sucked, not because of the bugs.

Adultism:
Oh, Our game isn't bad. Its the players! Not only do they not know good content when it smacks them in the face, but we also gave them a old outdated version for the beta because we KNOW its amazing no matter what anyone says.

It usually is the player's fault to be honest. The average player doesn't know a damn thing about proper balance. Hell, the average player doesn't even know how to play a shooter properly (the majority of people don't even play the objective). BF3 ended up sucking because DICE actually listened too much to the community. Go to the MoH Warfighter forum and post about anything being nerfed, everyone will be screaming at you that there should be "NO NERFS!!!" because of exactly what happened to BF3. From the article, it seems DICE has learned not to listen to the community. You give the community the power to "balance" the game and the game will turn to shit; it has happened before, it will happen again.

cursedseishi:
Honestly... I'm at a loss for words here...

There is just so much rampant idiocy in that one statement alone, that I don't know how to address it at all...

In order to test the game, you have players playing a Beta build of it, yet you claim its only really to stress the servers, and that any and all the bugs they are finding right now don't really exist... Yet by that very act, they aren't stress testing anything. Should their "miracle" client be released and played, the stress on that alone will be likely to produce a good deal of bugs. Bugs that would of been caught had they done the sensible thing and RELEASED an updated client.

The last thing you ever do is give people an, as purely an example here, alpha build and tell them that is beta. It not only creates a bunch of negative PR which will ultimately hurt you, but it's boneheaded and just plain... stupid, for a lack of a nicer term than what I wanted to use...

I guess all I can really say is... Good job Dice. You've made the average Call of Duty player appear more intelligent than you. And by "average CoD Player", I mean "Whiny brattish 12 year old who has no purpose playing the game" player.

Do people not understand what a Beta is? Of course, it's going to have bugs that were already fixed, a BETA is not a DEMO, they are 2 completely different things. And Alpha builds are like unplayable pretty much, the consumer will almost never play an Alpha build of a game.

Steven Bogos:
DICE producer Patrick Bach says the beta build is "well out of date" and that testers "aren't playing the actual game".

So what do you think? Does this ease your concerns about the game? Were you unimpressed by the beta?

So why did they want players testing an out of date build to begin with? "Stress testing"? Give me a fucking break. You don't need to release a Beta to make sure your game even works. And it won't work on launch anyway because NOBODY IN THIS INDUSTRY can have enough servers operational on release. And what fucking data are you using if you're not listening to people who actually played the game? I doubt any of the problems players encountered will actually be fixed in the release, the only difference will be higher graphical resolution.

Shamanic Rhythm:
Otherwise known as a 'Maxis situation'.

Or even better, a 'DICE situation'.

Pot kettle glass houses etc.

Seems pretty DICE-y to me :P

StriderShinryu:
I can see him largely being right on this one, but I wouldn't totally blame the players. If the beta was intended as more of a stress test and general performance test, that's cool. Betas don't really exist in the same state that they used to though. For players, now, it's all about the early access. They are looking to win and to get a leg up on those players who won't be playing until launch. And, as anyone who even remotely makes note of competitive games will attest to, the first thing people do complain about is that one thing that they repeatedly get beaten by.

But unless you have an incredibly limited Testing Pool who all play the same way, if most of them are being held up on the same thing then chances are it's a legitimate problem. It's not like this Dark Souls where you're supposed to get through the game by trial and error alone.

Plus Bach's excuse sounds about as reliable as an article on cybernetic implants published by the Daily Fail.

No.

Stop using that phrase, "objectively wrong". You're clearly using it wrong. "Objectively wrong" doesn't mean "we don't agree with our players' assessment".

And what data are you using exactly? Balancing isn't quite as hard as it's made out to be. Pro-tip: if a very large portion of the playerbase uses a particular tactic or item or what-have-you, it's often because it's generally more effective than other alternatives. So you therefore have three choices: 1) nerf the widely-used tactic/item/whatever and deal with the resulting rage; 2) buff other options to make them more valid as choices, thus balancing by providing variety; 3) ignore both your players' feedback and the data which confirms there is an imbalance and shout them down as being idiots.

DICE apparently thinks the last choice is the best one for retaining loyal customers. It's not.

One of these days the industry attitude of "We are right and the consumers are all ignorant morons" is going to bite them in the arse.

On that day I shall gloat mercilessly without sympathy.

Remember when Beta meant Beta, rather than 'buggy, unbalanced demo?

Those were good days.

Its like these guys are just seeing the internet for the very first time in their lives, gasp, and are horrified.

the only problems i really had with this game were 1 shot kills and the spawning. only to frequently you spawn right behind enemies or vise versa. happened to me that i spawned, walked few steps, and then i got killed from behind because a player spawned right there were i was, and in the kill cam i saw that 5 more were standing there as well.

but not very nice of dice saying players are wrong. im sure they got some stupid feedback from people who dont know how to explain things properly but they cant deny that everyone is wrong.
well, im not getting it on day 1, i rather sit back and wait.

When I become the head of a major publisher, I'm gonna release an early access beta for one of my games that will actually be the finished product. And then we're going to spend the next year addressing all of the complaints, saying "No no, that bug or exploit or design flaw won't be in the actual product", and then a year later we're going to release it.

major_chaos:
You know DICE, you really should have seen this coming. The majority of the gaming community is too fucking stupid to actually know what a beta is, and people whining about how everything that kills them is super OP is standard for competitive shooters. Also nice biased click-bait headline there Escapist.

You sir have summed up my thoughts exactly. Beta is not an early access to the final game, it is there so the devs can see what breaks when their systems (hardware and software) are heavily stressed, and to get a larger pool of eyes to find that random bug or glitch that occurs under obscure circumstances.

CriticKitten:
3) ignore both your players' feedback and the data which confirms there is an imbalance and shout them down as being idiots.
DICE apparently thinks the last choice is the best one for retaining loyal customers. It's not.

what data do you have that DICE doesnt?

Shamanic Rhythm:

Steven Bogos:
What was the point of the beta then? Stress testing the game, says Bach, "so that you don't end up in a Rockstar situation where the game doesn't actually work on day one."

Otherwise known as a 'Maxis situation'.

Or even better, a 'DICE situation'.

Pot kettle glass houses etc.

You needed to put on the sunglasses for that one, Horatio.

YEEEEEEEEEEEEAH!

DVS BSTrD:

So why did they want players testing an out of date build to begin with? "Stress testing"? Give me a fucking break.

Well... Because... testing server how servers and online code function with a large amount players is a completely different thing than testing the individual software of the games mechanics?

And what fucking data are you using if you're not listening to people who actually played the game?

How about the mountains of data that DICE is constantly gathering and storing every single match about every single (actual) players loadout, behaviour and actions?
If a whiny player gets sniped a few times and then complains about everyone sniping, they can go into this data, view the percentages of people using sniper rifles and look at how many kills they generate compared to other weapons.
If they can see that these numbers prove the whiny gamer to be -objectively wrong-, why the hell would they listen to him?

The only problem I see with DICE is they needed to put a huge disclaimer every time someone started the game explaining what they wanted the people for so people wouldn't get upset at what they see as an imbalance really isn't and instead of calling it a beta test, label it for what it really was, using an outdated beta build to stress the servers.

As for this article itself, I think the quotes from DICE are too chopped up to give real meaning to what was really being said and just have a larger quote block from DICE and comment on the entire quote instead of a sentence here and there.

They really need to start calling these things a demo and not a beta. Running a serious beta is not telling your users their feedback is flat out wrong.

CriticKitten:
No.

Stop using that phrase, "objectively wrong". You're clearly using it wrong. "Objectively wrong" doesn't mean "we don't agree with our players' assessment".

And what data are you using exactly? Balancing isn't quite as hard as it's made out to be. Pro-tip: if a very large portion of the playerbase uses a particular tactic or item or what-have-you, it's often because it's generally more effective than other alternatives. So you therefore have three choices: 1) nerf the widely-used tactic/item/whatever and deal with the resulting rage; 2) buff other options to make them more valid as choices, thus balancing by providing variety; 3) ignore both your players' feedback and the data which confirms there is an imbalance and shout them down as being idiots.

DICE apparently thinks the last choice is the best one for retaining loyal customers. It's not.

I am 100% with DICE on this one.
You ever played World of Tanks? I have/am and let me tell you something, the players are #&$%^& @*$**. That is what they are. If you ever go on forums, the endless whining on NON-EXISTENT balance problems, how underpowered german vehicles are, how overpowered Soviet ones are.... and most of that from people who are either really stupid, neo-nazis, communists, or are just VERY bad at the game. Statistics show they are wrong. Better players show them they are wrong. WarGaming tells them they are wrong. They still whine.
Between the players and DICE, I choose DICE. They have the statistics and the knowledge on balance. The vast majority of people on Battlefield are probably like WoT player, only less in number.

, "so that you don't end up in a Rockstar situation where the game doesn't actually work on day one."

Lol no worries there, not a chance in hell that BF4 is going to sell the crazy high numbers that GTAV did. Mind you saying that didn't they do this same roll out with BF3 and guess what, day one launch problems all across the board there. So while the off hand comment about Rockstar having issues may seem funny this is coming from a company that had just as big an issue with a much less popular game, oh and Ill bet a cookie that BF4, or some element intrinsically linked to its running (Origin, Battlelog I am looking at you) will go tits up on day one, lets remember THIS is EA after all.

"I saw people saying 'oh, you haven't fixed the problems you had in 3 because there are too many snipers,' and it's like no, we can see on the data that you are objectively wrong about this thing."

Okay, lets skip over the in game stats and move on to more realistic values, have they fixed the fact that the game just like BF BC2 and BF3 is riddled with hacks, in fact have they done a thing to resolve this or are they still sticking with the frankly worthless punkbuster?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6V-NwdNMEzE

Well I guess that answers that question then.

It's amazing really in their quest to take on COD, to appeal to the generic masses they have some how managed to make the game so generically boring that with each new version my time playing it has gotten less.

BF2 over 1000hours logged
BFBC2 over 300 hours logged
BF3 less than 100
BF4 not gonna even bother

Oh come on, people, calm down a bit. The way I see it, the guy is talking about stuff like people complaining about snipers being overpowered after losing a few matches because of them. Remember, beta testers are not game designers, and I hardly believe the majority of their feedback would be totally professional, worth noting and well thought out.

And the article is quite biased and flamebaity. I can totally see the point in using the beta for stress testing. Remember Diablo III at launch? THAT'S the kind of situation they seem to be trying to avoid.

Edit: Now that I think about it, I actually kind of want to applaud them for daring to come out with this kind of statement. Too many devs sugarcoat everything and tell gamers they're perfect wonder children of God in order to kiss maximum amounts of ass and get the largest possible audience. We, if any people, should know that they're almost the exact opposite.

GoddyofAus:
They really need to start calling these things a demo and not a beta. Running a serious beta is not telling your users their feedback is flat out wrong.

Yea what happened to the term "demo" anyway, I never see it anymore. It's always an "open beta", even when (like with BF4) they don't seem particularily interested in actually testing the game...

I do get why they look at the numbers rather than follow every opinion thrown at them in the forums, because players are notoriously petty and close-minded. It's never MY fault if I die, there must be someone or some THING to blame!

I see some people defending DICE, and I'll join them on a singular count: Players of competitive games complain about everything that kills them, legitimate or otherwise. DICE has every right to use statistics over player complaints. That said, it still defeats the purpose of a Beta to release something of this nature and just ignore all player input.

That does not excuse their behavior in this case though. The players may be "objectively wrong" but they can't know that because all they have to go on is the beta. If you've made fixes, make it known. Keep a running list of things that have been addressed a la patch notes, and just slap it up there every time the game boots so people know what's been fixed and what hasn't. Also, just make the player statistics publicly available. If nothing else it's interesting to see how many people use what, and I don't know that it would hurt the game to do so. It might even start an interesting metagame.

Phoenixmgs:

Adultism:
Oh, Our game isn't bad. Its the players! Not only do they not know good content when it smacks them in the face, but we also gave them a old outdated version for the beta because we KNOW its amazing no matter what anyone says.

It usually is the player's fault to be honest. The average player doesn't know a damn thing about proper balance. Hell, the average player doesn't even know how to play a shooter properly (the majority of people don't even play the objective). BF3 ended up sucking because DICE actually listened too much to the community. Go to the MoH Warfighter forum and post about anything being nerfed, everyone will be screaming at you that there should be "NO NERFS!!!" because of exactly what happened to BF3. From the article, it seems DICE has learned not to listen to the community. You give the community the power to "balance" the game and the game will turn to shit; it has happened before, it will happen again.

To be fair, there were some guns in Battlefield 3 early on that did genuinely need nerfed. The USAS 12 early on was a ridiculously overpowered weapon, same with the M417 when Close Quarters first came out. But you're right, most of the time it is the players fault. When someone gets killed on the PC version you usually see them scream in chat that they lagged, or the person was hacking, or exploiting a glitch or even using an overpowered weapon. It never seems to be that they were just simply shot fairly by another player.

Phoenixmgs:

cursedseishi:
Honestly... I'm at a loss for words here...

There is just so much rampant idiocy in that one statement alone, that I don't know how to address it at all...

In order to test the game, you have players playing a Beta build of it, yet you claim its only really to stress the servers, and that any and all the bugs they are finding right now don't really exist... Yet by that very act, they aren't stress testing anything. Should their "miracle" client be released and played, the stress on that alone will be likely to produce a good deal of bugs. Bugs that would of been caught had they done the sensible thing and RELEASED an updated client.

The last thing you ever do is give people an, as purely an example here, alpha build and tell them that is beta. It not only creates a bunch of negative PR which will ultimately hurt you, but it's boneheaded and just plain... stupid, for a lack of a nicer term than what I wanted to use...

I guess all I can really say is... Good job Dice. You've made the average Call of Duty player appear more intelligent than you. And by "average CoD Player", I mean "Whiny brattish 12 year old who has no purpose playing the game" player.

Do people not understand what a Beta is? Of course, it's going to have bugs that were already fixed, a BETA is not a DEMO, they are 2 completely different things. And Alpha builds are like unplayable pretty much, the consumer will almost never play an Alpha build of a game.

The problem is that these days most people treat Betas like a demo and only sign up for the early access. They couldn't care less about finding bugs and glitches and helping improve the finished product. They just want to play.

Kungfu_Teddybear:
To be fair, there were some guns in Battlefield 3 early on that did genuinely need nerfed. The USAS 12 early on was a ridiculously overpowered weapon, same with the M417 when Close Quarters first came out. But you're right, most of the time it is the players fault. When someone gets killed on the PC version you usually see them scream in chat that they lagged, or the person was hacking, or exploiting a glitch or even using an overpowered weapon. It never seems to be that they were just simply shot fairly by another player.

Yeah, I know from my MOHW friends that played BF3. They said just a couple guns needed nerfs but like everything got nerfed and they all stopped playing. Most even bought the premium pass thing or whatever and sold their games even though they bought DLC that wasn't even out yet. The average player is so stupid. My teams get constantly accused of using aimbots (which aren't even possible on PS3, at least on 360 it is possible but very very unlikely) or modded controllers, it's ridiculous.

Why would you release an outdated version of the game (while your team is working on the current build not available to the public) if you wanted to improve your FINAL release?! oh right marketing.... -.-

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