I mean, suggestion threads are inherently short lived due to the development life cycle. Please don’t get me wrong, I’m not at all blaming developers, but it’s just a side effect of something that takes time. If I make a suggestion about wanting a change made to something, even if it’s something that’s actually relevant to the current theme of the alpha build, there’s little to no chance (it seems to me) that it will be implemented any time soon. Add to that that if the idea goes beyond an existing feature, and is in fact something new, then the likelihood again goes down. Plus, a lot of the suggestions are baked into the dev road-map already (at least the ones I see a lot, like people again asking for multiplayer or multiple playable factions).
So, when it takes a long time to see anything actually get off the discourse and into the game, there’s not a lot of motivation to look at the suggestion threads. Why bother agreeing that feature X or new enemy Y would be nice to have, if we probably won’t see it?
Again, nothing against the devs here, it’s just the nature of the beast. Features take time to put into place, polish, and refine.
Well. I’m participating in alot of suggestion areas for other games (Robocraft, Path of Exile and some discussions on steam) and I can tell you, that people are usually very interested in participating in suggestion threads, even if the suggestion might never make it into a game. The thing is: The likelihood, that something gets recognized by the developers is usually much higher, when a thread gets alot of feedback from alot of players.
Well, I would say that most games are like this. New things always bear the risk of creating more bugs or breaking the game in any way. But that shouldn’t stop us at making suggestions and ofc it shouldnt stop team radiant to consider to implement those suggestions.
I just think that discouse is a handy plattform, but it is very bad for feedback and suggestions (especially for the latter one). In other forums, you have sections. So you had to choose one section before you can actually see the threads in that section. But in discourse, you can see threads from all categories when you enter the forum. Most people don’t bother to press on “all categories” and choose suggestions. That means, threads from all categories are shown and that means your suggestions will very fast drop out of the first page of threads. The summary thread idea was OK, but ofc it isn’t optimal either, since the summaries do not reflect the suggestions perfectly and with 20+ suggestions per week, it’s still alot to read even if it’s only 1-2 sentences per suggestion.
I still think it would be great if team radiant would give their opinion about some of the suggestions. I would like to point out that not every suggestion made is suited for sucvh a “team radiant feedback”, since many suggestions are duplicates from past ones, or it is something that is already planned by team radiant or the suggestion is just not possible to develop or does not fit into the game. I think most people here wouldn’t complain if the admins/mods/devs themselves choose the suggestions they would like to feature in a monthly video. It’s at least better then no feedback at all on your suggestions.
In my experience, people might get excited about an idea in a discussion, but the consistent lack of implementation throws a wet blanket on some of that enthusiasm. Some of the suggestion threads that come up repeatedly (changes to footmen and combat, adding features like mine carts or water mechanics, and even hearthling customization) lose steam because when the thread was made two years ago but still nothing has really been done, agreeing that it sounds cool doesn’t actually seem to be linked to features going into the game.
Now, it makes sense that core features like buildings actually constructing and performance come first, but not a lot of people get hyped up for changes under the hood to pathing AI when they wanted fireworks and something new they could play with. I get what you’re saying about popular threads being more likely to see feedback or realization within the game in one form or another, but when you’ve got a small team and a long time between engaging changes, it can be hard to get hyped up for things I would like to see that may only be relevant to how I like to play an open game like this.
If a suggestion comes up repeatedly, it’s obvious that people don’t click on it anymore. If the suggestion has been discussed enough in the past, it doesn’t need more of that, especially since team radiant will probably be aware of the suggestion already.
Well, the feature video I have suggested is not only about “cool new things”. Every suggestion can be featured, even technical/bug-fixing ones, as long as team radiant thinks they have something to say about it that is interesting for the community. That people are interested in technical stuff can be seen in the Desktop Tuesdays, where some of them are about bug-fixing, making the AI better or why it was so hard to implement that staircase building feature. Another evidence is, that people also look forward to new Alpha-Versions that focus on better AI behavior when it comes to building. Ofc everyone likes to see new features but I doubt that the community is only interested in those.
The goal of the feature video is to give some kind of feedback to suggestions that caught some attention. It shows the community: “We have read that suggestions and we like/dislike it because of the following reason” or “We discuss the following suggestion, because it was interesting for us for the following reasons”. The feature video shouldn’t be about if a suggestions gets implemented or not, it should just give the players some kind of thoughts from team radiant. It helps the community tounderstand team radiant and the game better. We may learn if certain suggestions are just impossible to implement, no matter how cool it is and I think it would greatly help to push some of the more interesting suggestion threads.
Related to the first part of this discussion, about how to make a suggestion live on for a longer time.
If we encourage people who made suggestions to write a summary of the discussion once it dies out it would bump the thread up in a positive way. It might then get new life as new people would have an easier time jumping in to the discussion. It would also make it easier for Team Radiant (and everyone else) to find the improved version of the original suggestion and/or a summary of pros and cons that’s been brought up.
I think the summary should be added as a new reply, but also edited into the original post with a link to the reply. That way you could just read the original post and then jump to the summary “bookmark” and read the rest from there.
This would of course not solve the problem of suggestions that get too little feedback, but still.
The problem is: I usually do TL;DR versions of my suggestions right at the start. And since there is literally no feedback, it’s hard to sum up pros and cons given by the community. I mean, it’s a good suggestion that people do summaries, but there are enough short suggestions or suggestions with summaries who still dont receive any feedback and my thread “suggestions of the last 14 days” also was only mediocre successfull.
I think the main reasons for the current lack of community feedback are:
- Discourse: Since all the threads from all categories appear on the front page, suggestions disappear from the front page very fast (sometimes it only takes minutes) and most people don’t sort threads by categories I guess. In other forums, you have a forum section that is for community suggestions and people who are interested in suggestions can go there. - Feedback from the developer: I know this is not an easy task. You are developing the game and on the other side you need to be ich touch with the community all the time so that you can keep up a good healthy community. While the desktop tuesday is absolutely amazing and unique for stonehearth, there are other things that should also receive attention. In the forum of Path of Exile, a thread that got a reply from ann admin gets marked with the developer sign. Everyone then can see that this thread was seen/read by the developer and this results in tons of attention, because people think “This idea has something that others dont have. It may have a real chance to make it into the game”. But obviously this creates the problem, that some can be unhappy if they put alot of effort into their suggestion and then the developers doesn’t respond. But that’s a risk that most people are willing to take on.
Since it’s practically impossible for team radiant to respond to every suggestion, having a feature video would greatly help. It would be direct feedback to suggestions from the community, the community can see that suggestions are read and it would also improve the attention that the featured suggestions get from the community. And I think most people wouldn’t mind if team radiant or crewmembers like mods decide which suggestions should be featured in the video.
Like I said, my suggestion would not solve the problem of some suggestions getting too little feedback, but at least help bump a topic that actually have been discussed one last time before it fades into oblivion. It wouldn’t replace any of your other suggestions.
Marking suggestions that got commented or liked by admins could probably be done with a tag, though that doesn’t show very clear from what I’ve seen.
About the feature video: how about making it a recurring part of the streams instead. It would save the team the time to make and upload a separate video.
Yes, this would also be awesome. They could just upload the part from the stream where they featured/discussed the community suggestions as an extra news, without much editing (since not everyone watches the streams). Wouldn’t be much work and it would probably end up being as good as making a video just for the suggestions.
In 7 days to die, another early access game with great promise, the devs solved this problem by creating a weekly thread where everyone posts suggestions and at the end of the week they make a video going trough each of them.