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  1. #481

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trenloe View Post
    @Viper007 - realistic. Realism is saying, "Yep, we could have done better and really getting serious!! So I guess you see realism as who cares if it takes five years to get something done, like taking it out of the vault. Too little too late!!! You see realism as negativity, not helping, sticking their nose in where it doesn't belong, and have asked posters why they care and if they have some other agenda. Quite frankly I'm flabbergasted at the conclusions you've jumped to in your micro dissection of everyone's posts in the last week, and the borderline insults you've thrown at some people. You're frustrated and very angry, that's clear; but I think you've gone off the rails a bit here and have contributed to any negativity yourself. And it took FIVE years for me to get to that point, YES

    I don't want to get into a war of words with you, because it seems you've completely made up your mind and have way too much time on your hands to sit and mull this over. I like to look for solutions, so I'll put this back to you (if you care at this point). Since this discussion blew up a week ago Doug has already been in touch with Russ at En World and has their permission to move the code from the vault to be unencrypted - so within the last week there has been progress made with one of the big things mentioned recently in this thread. Once this is released, currently planned for December, this will allow people to modify the code via extensions (as many community developers do for other rulesets) and will also hopefully provide some fixes and updates that users feel improve the ruleset use. Other than this, what else are you realistically looking for in this ruleset?
    Now that you have said your peace, let me ask you something! Would you buy a car that has so many things wrong with it, it was un-driveable from the start, wait patiently for FIVE years to get fixed. Still have a door missing, a tire out of round, amongst other things and then find out somethings are getting fixed, then the car is discontinued and you see that the car company is just now getting on it after FIVE, FIVE, FIVE years? Now you are in business, compare this to a computer in the same state, would be hard to work with, would it not? Software has had it too easy in that you can do what you want, fix it or not, and get by with it. Pump your brakes, fix the thing's people have been talking about for FIVE years and be a real company and say "Hey, were sorry, we will work harder!"

    Now, ddavision I am not going to dissect your post, because evidently I have made everyone really upset because I have been honest and backed up by people other than myself or I guess it's just the fact you all can't go back through the posts and READ!! Your a company supplying rulesets for games. Let's compare N.E.W. (the actual rules) to the N.E.W. ruleset that started in 2017!! If Russ or Morrus whichever, sold people a half written game told the consumer's you'll get the rest after FIVE years, would you buy it? I guess since your business is software, you can get by with that, because people have to buy it, before they can try it!!

    And this 30 day guarantee is just an excuse, sure, if the game had been finished before I bought it and I knew that fact, I would have asked for a refund. But since I trusted the company to do the right thing, I and others should suffer, right? It's not about the money, it's not about the game now, it's about FG. Get off your high horse, be honest say you are sorry for the fact it took FIVE years and Damned's post for pissing me off!! Is to too much to ask to say "Ok, I should have been watching closer!", "Ok, MBM treatment of the system was downright shitty!!", I don't care what his problems are, I have problems too. But when I take a job on, it's done, it's right and if not, I make it right!! And most of all, I tell the customer I am sorry for the problems, HONESTLY!!

    If you want realism, honesty and truth, your company dropped the ball more times than I can count, quit saying what do you expect and say honestly you ****** up! You want my business, that's what it will take!!
    Last edited by Viper007; November 23rd, 2021 at 02:31.

  2. #482
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    My understanding, possibly incorrectly, was that N.E.W. was playable from the beginning but that it was rough around the edges. If it was as bad as you insist, then a refund should have been a super obvious response. If you are saying that W.O.I.N. can't exist with just N.E.W. without O.L.D., then that is something I hadn't really considered. My understanding was that they were separate systems with separate mechanics that had to be covered, but that they could be integrated together with some amount of effort. We were told by the community developer many times that O.L.D. was basically finished or nearly done, but we rely upon the developer to tell us when something is ready to submit to testing and deployment. With some of the bugs and issues with N.E.W., we definitely didn't want to push for a release of O.L.D. before the developer even thought it was complete.

    Our options as a company are to a) wait for the community dev to provide a finished copy to review, b) scrap any work that has already been done and ask a new developer to redo the work from scratch (if there is an interested dev), or c) take internal resources off the project they are working on to work on a system that has far fewer fans. The only really viable option is a). By putting the ruleset into maintenance mode, we are essentially doing a modified version of option C, but we are limiting our costs to only cover bugs and not new features or new content. If someone else volunteers to add new content or features, we would be happy to contract them out as a community dev to do so.

    N.E.W. has been out on Fantasy Grounds for 4 year now and it produced about $160 a year in revenue for the community dev. If we calculated the average hourly rate for the amount of work the dev put in on it, it is very hard to blame him for not wanting to invest more time and resources into it. With just the emails and support that we've done already by the company, it has probably cost us more than we ever made on the product. Any maintenance dev work we do on it from here on out, now that we moved it to our dev staff will definitely make this a losing proposition financially. Most companies will simply not do products unless they are going to be profitable. We have no indication that O.L.D. would be profitable.

  3. #483
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    @viper007 - What Doug has been trying to get across to you is that the vast majority of the over 2,000 DLC products have been produced by community developers. These aren't SmiteWorks employees who can be forced into doing things in a certain way. These developers don't earn a cent until the product they develop goes on sale and someone buys it. Yes, sometimes some of those 2,000+ products does not live up the expectations of some customers and the developer can be asked to fix those issues; if that developer has moved on then there's little that SmiteWorks can do to cajole them into doing work - even if that developer had said that they were going to do that work and provide specific functionality in the future. They're not SmiteWorks employees and their comments can't be taken as commitments from SmiteWorks - which is why SmiteWorks always say "buy a product for what it is now, not what it might be in the future" - they can't possibly control what a community developer does, and when and how they do it (if at all). They haven't messed up in my opinion (I know you strongly disagree with that) as this is the standard process for developing over 2,000 FG DLC products, the vast majority of which are of an at least acceptable standard. Sometimes that process fails, for many reasons, in this case it's due to developer activities beyond SmiteWorks control. They've transitioned the ruleset to bug fix/CoreRPG compatibility (which will allow new CoreRPG features to be added in future) but they would lose significant money if they took on the development of the ruleset directly. I know this is not what you want, but a very small niche software company can't possibly afford to knowingly commit maybe 100+ hours of development time with product sales providing enough commission to cover only a handful of those hours.

    I find your posts confusing - you say "too little to late" for a significant step forwards in making the ruleset code available to all people who own the ruleset, but then later you say that you'll continue to be a customer if just someone from SmiteWorks said they messed up. I really don't know where you're coming from and if your anger and resentment could ever be appeased.
    Private Messages: My inbox is forever filling up with PMs. Please don't send me PMs unless they are actually private/personal messages. General FG questions should be asked in the forums - don't be afraid, the FG community don't bite and you're giving everyone the chance to respond and learn!

  4. #484

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    Quote Originally Posted by ddavison View Post
    My understanding, possibly incorrectly, was that N.E.W. was playable from the beginning but that it was rough around the edges. If it was as bad as you insist, then a refund should have been a super obvious response.
    You keep going back to the refund, it's not about the money, it was FG's inability to explain to the customer things you are saying five years later and the fact you were selling an unfinished (at that time product, which was getting very little care, and this is shown in the thread.) Someone wasn't watching, FG didn't care (seemingly) and evidently can't read threads. You are the seller, I am the buyer, you sell the product, I buy the product, if the product is not what it should be, gaurantee or not, you will lose business. The difference is and was that MBM was bouncing around doing whatever, didn't cover the bases he needed to cover, FG ignored the fact and did nothing until people complained, not once, but all through the threads, and five years later, you don't understand why I am upset! Is it really that hard to understand?

    Quote Originally Posted by ddavison View Post
    If you are saying that W.O.I.N. can't exist with just N.E.W. without O.L.D., then that is something I hadn't really considered. My understanding was that they were separate systems with separate mechanics that had to be covered, but that they could be integrated together with some amount of effort. We were told by the community developer many times that O.L.D. was basically finished or nearly done, but we rely upon the developer to tell us when something is ready to submit to testing and deployment. With some of the bugs and issues with N.E.W., we definitely didn't want to push for a release of O.L.D. before the developer even thought it was complete.
    This shows that you really don't know anything about the product that you (FG) are selling.

    Quote Originally Posted by ddavison View Post
    Our options as a company are to a) wait for the community dev to provide a finished copy to review, b) scrap any work that has already been done and ask a new developer to redo the work from scratch (if there is an interested dev), or c) take internal resources off the project they are working on to work on a system that has far fewer fans. The only really viable option is a). By putting the ruleset into maintenance mode, we are essentially doing a modified version of option C, but we are limiting our costs to only cover bugs and not new features or new content. If someone else volunteers to add new content or features, we would be happy to contract them out as a community dev to do so.
    That should have been done at one point but wasn't, there are huge time gaps (again, read the posts) where nothing was being done, sorry, but if I have a contractor not doing his job, he gets warned, and if it keeps occurring, fired! Where was your QA, evidently not reading the posts!!

    Quote Originally Posted by ddavison View Post
    N.E.W. has been out on Fantasy Grounds for 4 year now and it produced about $160 a year in revenue for the community dev. If we calculated the average hourly rate for the amount of work the dev put in on it, it is very hard to blame him for not wanting to invest more time and resources into it. With just the emails and support that we've done already by the company, it has probably cost us more than we ever made on the product. Any maintenance dev work we do on it from here on out, now that we moved it to our dev staff will definitely make this a losing proposition financially. Most companies will simply not do products unless they are going to be profitable. We have no indication that O.L.D. would be profitable.
    You keep going back to OLD, and I assume NOW, but what you still do not understand is that his revenue would probably be greatly increased, if he had given the ruleset the care it needed! There are quite a few posts from people on the thread that got refunds, I'm sure there were quite a few that didn't ask for one reason or another. Those people that I mentioned, left quite a few posts explaining their reasons. Again, is it there fault or mine that FG wasn't following the progress (even though I thought they were)! Everyone from you, damned, trenloe, and moon wizard have explained to me your reasons, but actually, not one has said, "Hey, I understand your frustration, let me see what I can do about this!", it would have made the last five years at least understandable, but no, FG is more concerned with why they couldn't, not what they could do, until now!

    I don't really care about your business practices, as I am sure you don't care about mine. Buy a toaster and it don't work, take it back!! Buy one and the warranty goes out, I am out of luck! Your gaurantee is only as good as your business and products which (if you read the posts) were up, down, down, up, down,etc.

    I tell you what, send me a PM, saying what you would to a customer who was standing in front of you that bought this product from FG as was(is) dissatisfied. Do that and I will cease beating a dead horse! That will provide an outcome that will be beneficial for myself and you, for I will either move on or continue to be a satisfied customer!

  5. #485
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    Quote Originally Posted by Viper007 View Post
    Everyone from you, damned, trenloe, and moon wizard have explained to me your reasons, but actually, not one has said, "Hey, I understand your frustration, let me see what I can do about this!"
    Err, not so. In my first post in this thread, I made the following question directly to you:

    Quote Originally Posted by Trenloe View Post
    I like to look for solutions, so I'll put this back to you (if you care at this point). Since this discussion blew up a week ago Doug has already been in touch with Russ at En World and has their permission to move the code from the vault to be unencrypted - so within the last week there has been progress made with one of the big things mentioned recently in this thread. Once this is released, currently planned for December, this will allow people to modify the code via extensions (as many community developers do for other rulesets) and will also hopefully provide some fixes and updates that users feel improve the ruleset use. Other than this, what else are you realistically looking for in this ruleset?
    All you did was come back with "Too little too late!!!" which suggested to me that you're not interested in actually getting your issues with this ruleset addressed. You keep going on about "5 years!", let's try and get past that - for whatever reasons, we are where we are. I specifically asked you to look for solutions, but you either missed my question or chose to ignore it.


    Quote Originally Posted by Viper007 View Post
    Buy a toaster and it don't work, take it back!! Buy one and the warranty goes out, I am out of luck!
    You say it's not about the money, but this statements seems to suggest that is in there somewhere. Doug has mentioned more than once that they do refunds after 30 days in exceptional circumstances, and earlier in this you were asked "Have you asked for a refund?" which I didn't see a response to. I can't speak for SmiteWorks, but I would imagine this situation would class as an exceptional circumstance. If you're really not looking for a refund, or haven't actually requested one, then analogies such as this just confuse things.

    Quote Originally Posted by Viper007 View Post
    This shows that you really don't know anything about the product that you (FG) are selling.
    The vast majority of company presidents don't know the minutiae of how third party products they deal with work in detail. SmiteWorks have over 2,000 DLC products, covering many RPG products - it's a bit of a stretch to expect the president of a company to know details of every single product they deal with. They'll rely on others to tell them information - Doug admits exactly this in his responses to you and takes on board the new information.

    I know you're angry, upset and frustrated - but posts like this really don't help find a solution to your issues.

    Quote Originally Posted by Viper007 View Post
    That should have been done at one point but wasn't, there are huge time gaps (again, read the posts) where nothing was being done, sorry, but if I have a contractor not doing his job, he gets warned, and if it keeps occurring, fired!
    As the post you quoted was saying, this essentially happened - I'm not a SmiteWorks employee so I can't speak for exactly what happened; MBM stopped working on the ruleset (either resigned, was essentially "sacked" or some other arrangement) and SmiteWorks took on the project in maintenance mode and have said multiple times that if another dev wants to take on the work the will be happy to contract them.

    You’ve mentioned “I don't really care about your business practices…” but please try to take this on board. FG content developers do their FG work in their spare time (for pretty much pennies in renumeration). This is not a standard “contractor” situation as applies to most other industries. Developers work around their day jobs and other real-life commitments, and pretty much do this for the love of the system they’re converting and for Fantasy Grounds – most developer’s hourly rate would work out as well below the minimum wage. If SmiteWorks overly pressured FG developers, or sacked them for not meeting other industry standards, then there would be a lot, lot less DLC products in the FG store than there are now. There are many more products waiting for FG developers – SmiteWorks don’t have a line of people waiting to take on developing products. FG developers do their work for the love of the system, they can’t possibly make a career of it.

    Hence SmiteWorks generally have to wait for a developer to submit their work, and not pressure them to try to meet specific timelines – otherwise a lot of FG developers would walk away. At some point they have to make a decision – and it appears that was made in this case, with SmiteWorks taking on the ruleset maintenance and being open to a new developer taking over. Yes, you see this as way too late, but FG developers frequently take a few years to submit products, especially complex products like rulesets.

    You probably don’t want to hear all of this, you say you don’t care, but this is the situation that SmiteWorks is in. Please keep this in mind.

    Quote Originally Posted by Viper007 View Post
    I tell you what, send me a PM, saying what you would to a customer who was standing in front of you that bought this product from FG as was(is) dissatisfied. Do that and I will cease beating a dead horse! That will provide an outcome that will be beneficial for myself and you, for I will either move on or continue to be a satisfied customer!
    Yeah, maybe you should have gone the direct route to start with rather than post in a public forum and angrily respond to community members trying to provide feedback - I’m referring to your comments regarding people sticking their nose in where it doesn't belong, and have asked posters why they care and if they have some other agenda.

    As I mentioned in my previous post, I’m not sure what you’re actually looking for. You either missed or ignored when I asked what you wanted to see in the ruleset – so I’m guessing that any ruleset changes will be “too little too late”; which doesn’t actually help other users of this ruleset, nor address the core issues that this thread deals with. It seems you’re basically looking for an apology from SmiteWorks – I could be wrong, apologies if I am, but I’m guessing that if you did get an apology you probably wouldn’t leave it at that and would use it as a bigger stick to beat that dead horse!

    Anyway, I’m a community moderator who got involved in this thread because insults were beginning to be thrown. Your frustration has been taken into account, but some of your posts were getting personal. I’m also a FG community developer – so I fully understand the process and the challenges that both SmiteWorks and the community developers face.

    I recommend you engage directly with SmiteWorks to address your issues. Airing them in a public forum, and shooting down community members feedback, hasn’t been constructive and has just caused more frustration and angst. I hope you follow this route and get a satisfactory resolution to your issues.
    Last edited by Trenloe; November 23rd, 2021 at 17:50.
    Private Messages: My inbox is forever filling up with PMs. Please don't send me PMs unless they are actually private/personal messages. General FG questions should be asked in the forums - don't be afraid, the FG community don't bite and you're giving everyone the chance to respond and learn!

  6. #486
    I'd just like to interject that I very much appreciate the explanations and the efforts put in both SmiteWorks staff and community developers into this ruleset and every ruleset on here.

    It's easy to fall into assuming that companies you interact with online are much bigger, richer and better resourced that they really are. There's precious little money in the RPG sphere in the first place. To a first approximation the industry is still D&D, with the only non-D&D-derived system reliably cracking more than 10% share of play stats being Call of Cthulhu. So the majority of money and resources are in D&D, with some leftovers for D&D spinoffs and derivatives (Paizo, Kobold Press, et al.). The majority of money still seems to go on hardbacks, with leftovers going to PDFs (DriveThruRPG, DMSGuild). Leftovers of leftovers go to make things like D&D Beyond, Roll20, Fantasy Grounds and Foundry a viable business.

    But when it comes to small systems we're talking leftovers of leftovers of leftovers of leftovers. Then further support into modules and rules expansions are leftovers even of that.

    It's no wonder devs come and go if there is only $160 a year in it. It's remarkable we get any supported platforms beyond D&D and its derivatives at all in that case. We should always bear that number in mind next time we complain about something being less than we'd like.


    I have a lot of sympathy. I sometimes get customers emailing me when a delivery link email hasn't got through saying "can't you get one of your people to talk to your internet service provider and fix this"? Like... "my people"? There's 80% FTE of me and about 10% of my wife, dude, we don't have people, the sum total of us working on this business is only about 90% of one person full time equivalent. I take the photos or film the videos and edit them and deliver them to you using the tools we can get off the shelf. We may look like a proper company because we have a website, but were are TINY.

    ALL RPG companies are tiny. Even the big ones have a turnover less than your local McDonalds franchise restaurant.

    Be nice!

    Cheers, Hywel
    Last edited by HywelPhillips; November 23rd, 2021 at 17:48.

  7. #487
    P.S. In a spirit of constructive suggestions, for anyone who is looking for a system which does most of what WOIN promises to deliver but which is so well supported that it makes running in on FG an absolute pleasure... try Savage Worlds (SWADE).

    For sure SWADE is less crunchy than WOIN, so it might not be to your taste. It has an effect-based system for magic rather than the "cause-based" freeform magic system in OLD, which was one of the main draws of the system for me. SWADE has surprising tactical depth and mechanical elegance when you get your head around it. You could replicate the cause-based magic in SWADE using trappings I suppose but it would be less than ideal. On the other hand for modern action film stuff and fast-playing SciFi, SWADE works really well.

    In terms of flexibility covering multiple eras and settings with a common ruleset, simple setting rules to customise the look-and-feel a bit for different genres, SWADE does it (IMO) even better than OLD/NOW/NEW. And the automation in FG is an absolute delight.

    I ended up running the games I'd planned for WOIN in SWADE instead and really enjoyed them.

    Cheers, Hywel

  8. #488
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    What I would tell a customer in person is the same thing I would tell them publicly on the forums. First off, I would say that we are sorry that they are unhappy with the product or service that they received. If it is in our power to correct or fix this with a reasonable amount of efforts and expense on our part, then we would try to do that. If we can't, then I would explain to them that our solution in those cases is to offer a refund policy that is very generous in my opinion. I would do my best to explain the reasoning on why we may or may not be able to meet certain requests.

    Regarding my understanding of W.O.I.N., I operate on descriptions and conversations I had with the author of the system, with two different community devs who read the rules and designed a ruleset for it, and from what I could glean by very quickly skimming parts of it that I saw. I guarantee I missed many things about the system. There is no way I could develop any sort of system mastery or knowledge for 2K different games, much less do any of the many other tasks that I need to do for the business to remain operational.

    If you have bugs, they should be reported and they will be loaded into our bug tracking system. We added a bunch of bugs in May and those are all currently marked as completed. You can see where we addressed these on this thread when they were reported and categorized. I've attached them to show the results. These are the kinds of things we are committed to doing. If we want more content to get produced, then this would require another community developer stepping up to do this.

    HywelPhillips >> I laughed at that story about "your people". People will often say, "you are the CEO" and I'm like, "... and the janitor". It helps keep things in perspective.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  9. #489
    The history of WOiN...

    WOiN stands for What's OLD is NEW. It was first published in a series of books in zine format. Version 1.0 was an all-in-one rule book. When the OGL was used to create NOW, EN World decided they would publish the ruleset and release WOiN as two separate books to complement this setting. OLD and NEW were split into their own books, but still heavily referenced each other so that there was a separate book for each setting. Versions 1.1 and 1.2 fixed problems and added more rules for different kinds of play. The Judge Dredd line was released after 1.2, and it's a modified version of NOW and NEW. The Dredd line has the most books released, and the next is the Solspace series (NEW). The more adamant fan base has always been for OLD, and from what I gathered it's because a large chunk of the player base comes from D&D 5e looking for something different because of EN World's position in TTRPG gaming forums.

  10. #490

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    Post deleted, thanks moving on!
    Last edited by Viper007; November 23rd, 2021 at 23:39.

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