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About K-16

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  • Tom

  1. Likewise DarkSynopsis! Your efforts in level editting are much appreciated too! (Also any perceived puns in my previous post are completely unintentional for the record.)
  2. Hi everyone. I just want to say I'm still here, and I haven't stopped being a fan of Serellan. I may not have been a Kickstarter backer for Takedown, but I did purchase multiple copies of it and distributed it to people. I also purchased copies of Epsilon to make up for the fact that I was very kindly allowed into the technical testing group, (and sincerest apologies for failing to contribute significantly to Serellan in return; I have since resolved issues that got in my way of playtesting, but I am too offensively late for it to matter). My point is, I'm not done being a part of the Serellan community, and I don't care what's left of it. I'm still here, and I'm not leaving Serellan as a fan. So Christian and Bella, know that there are people who will look forward to whatever Serellan wants to do one day, and I'm one of them. As long as the entity exists (or if the name changes, but you guys are still around), I'll remain silent but existing for whatever you want to sell. I didn't get Hotel Blind though, since it wasn't really my cup of tea to be honest (and for the record, I didn't get A Blind Legend, Beyond Eyes, nor Perception, so it's not you at all). I'm not a blind follower, and there are things I don't agree with. But that doesn't change the fact that I am on your side and I am NOT one of the people who will kick you while you're down. I am trying to learn about the bitterness of the gaming industry, so while I remain ignorant, I do gain a lot from hearing about your experiences and sadness that comes with the joy of gaming. Here's hoping I'll smarten up enough to know how to be a better fan. In any case, I'll be here with any other silent fans here. Tom is awesome for keeping that spark alive, and much appreciation goes to him and his talented voice acting. I'm not as proactive as him, but I'll support Serellan whenever the time comes. I will forever miss previous Serellan staff such as The Scout, Andy (hope he fully recovered from his accident), and TerryTheHammer (is his last name really Hammer?), and the Snowman/Bears jokes. But I'm not ready to leave anytime soon. Here's to better days, and fans that appreciate devs who know what we wanted all this time. And for the record, Epsilon is great, but apparently the demand made it a catch-22 scenario; people wanted more content before they will pay for the Early Access build, devs need more money before they can afford to make more content. And it seems other releases have overshadowed Epsilon's visibility in Steam. But damn Epsilon had the right foundation. It had what Takedown didn't have. And it definitely had what other tactical shooters didn't have. I don't mean pre-planning and its ability to change plans on the fly, and mark enemies (which I stand by as absolutely crucial). I mean a unique identity with its graphics, diverse cast, and storyboard cinematics. Well this wall of text is long enough. In short, Epsilon just needs more money, but the foundation is where it should be (maybe not technically since it sounds like the frameworks involved are time-consuming to update/improve or something along those lines), as gameplay wise it delivers what I wanted from Takedown (and no timer in the middle of my screen!). That and I'm staying as a fan. And that's... Pretty much it. I don't really know why I typed an entire forum post just for that. But I did. So too bad!
  3. Thanks Tom! Appreciate your proactiveness. I wonder if this can be as organized as Postal's open-source project? The thought excites me, but the actual work of understanding Unreal Engine terrifies me. Should be fun.
  4. It worked! Thank you DarkSynopsis! Now I get to see what I've missed.
  5. Sorry for double posting, but I wanted to bump the thread to ask if anybody could give a summary as to what Christian's response was. I don't have a Facebook account (don't ask, I have my reasons), so I can't see the livestream archive. My guess is he isn't exactly giving up, but rather there's no money to develop the game, so he's in a catch 22 scenario where people want more content before paying for an Early Access title, while Serellan can't develop more content without more money from Early Access sales. So he's stuck with the remaining option of working elsewhere to finally have a salary again and pay off those creditors/bills and keep a roof over him and his family, and food in the fridge. But that's my guess and I still want to know what I've missed.
  6. Wished I had a Facebook account to see the archive of the livestream. So I don't know what his response is at the moment. Still, holy freaking crap the cavalry showed up all of sudden! Like this is overwhelming and actually very confusing how support appeared out of nowhere. It's like the moment you press the hiatus button, a hidden emergency siren in Italy goes off, sending in an elite hardcore gamer squad of support, who have been training all these years to get that call. It feels... Very hopeful. And, uh... Confusing as to why this specific demographic and no others, though I do find Italians to be very nice people so I'm happy. At the very least we have a few more people who can attempt to figure out Epsilon's source materials if it actually goes open-source, following a similar structure to Postal.
  7. Cool. Very very cool. I like these answers a lot. That's a lot more assuring and promising. I took a look at the link today for the community developed Postal 1 project (and apparently several tasks are done!... Why was the demo feature removed to begin with?), and that looks like a very interesting idea. Christian will probably have to make a fancy post to entice people to join in the development, and maybe offer public access to Trello as a helpful detailed To-Do list. But I do like this idea a lot, and the worries I had doesn't look it'll have much of an impact. I only mentioned older games, because I don't know if Unreal Engine 4 games can go open source, but you made another explanation that makes that other concern irrelevant. So then back to Christian's question. How many people who are interested know what to do with it? I hope a lot. Crowd-development could be a bit of a challenge with the whole too many cooks thing. But Trello might mitigate that. Then again, that's assuming there's a lot of "cooks" to begin with. Edit: Also I think he did mention attempting to integrate certain tech features that aren't gameplay content, but rather to improve the foundation of the game (engine maybe? I forgot), and it took forever because of compatibility issues. I wonder if those will be stripped off, or if it'll need to be included in order for the Unreal Engine SDK to be compatible with whatever build Serellan has for Epsilon? Either that or the community continues straight from the Early Access build and scrap everything that was done since the EA build. I can't even remember if those were "tech features" or just an engine update... Dang it, my memory's foggy.
  8. No no no! Not selfish at all! You are one of the people we NEED to check out the source materials and see if anything is feasible to work with and understand how it's made (I keep saying materials because I'm assuming it's not limited to code, such as models, maps, skins, textures, etc.). You're someone who is giving the idea that the community can be more hands on in keeping Epsilon alive. I LIKE the idea of having the community step in. I mean, Unreal Tournament, Xonotic, and Natural-Selection 2 is community developed and while slow in updates, it still works and hasn't gone inactive. Even Team Fortress 2 has a chunk that's community developed. The only real worry is if there's nobody willing to work with the source materials. Serellan releases it, and either the handful of us gives up on it and nobody else touches it out of disinterest. You do raise a good point that making new features is nigh impossible without the source code, such as something as brutally painful as online networking. With the "limited SDK" I was implying Serellan would still need to be involved in some capacity for any features the community can't contribute to, which is probably the polar opposite of what Christian wants, at least for the time being. From what I could tell, those are older games regardless of them still being on sale. I know John Carmack is a strong believer in open source and encouraged the release of Doom's and Quake's source codes (including Doom 3), but I think it took a while before it actually happened. I also have no idea what Epic's policy is on open sourcing games using their engine (though I don't really see any issues, given their engine is provided for free). I am curious about the possibility of an agreement the community developers can sign being a variation of open-source, but the rights still belong to Serellan, and any sales proceeds goes directly to Serellan, or rather rights to sell the game are exclusive to Serellan. Hmm... Then I wonder if any pitchforks and torches will come out. Actually... How many people familiar with Unreal Engine 4 are interested in tinkering with Epsilon? I guess that's kind of/sort of/actually totally is/obviously the original question Christian was asking since it's the most important one. Derp.
  9. Honestly. unless you know 100,000 people who all want this exact game, I doubt it was too little, too late. You'd pretty much have to sell your car and donate the proceeds to give Serellan another month or two of development. If the entire community (including the backers who got the game for free) did what you did at any time (including now), Epsilon would've remained on life support. Slow development, but strong enough focus to continue say, once every three months? And I only say this because the Early Access price is cheap. If people agreed to a $30 Early Access (which I wouldn't to be honest), then if everybody did what you did at any time, then Epsilon would've continued as normal, with an update every month, and a staff that can be retained. You, DarkSynopsis, and k3nny1550 already went above and beyond what a fan was "expected" to do. Nobody would ever ask for that much diligence in spreading the word. Usually a person tweeting is the extent. But you bought multiple copies and passed them out like Halloween candy. I didn't gift anywhere near as much as you did. Anyway, I did see the part about owners of Epsilon would gain access to the source materials, but I do wonder (assuming there's enough people who figure out how to work with said source materials) how this will segment the community? You'll have clones so some will be on Epsilon and others will be on the other games. Of course, this is assuming that many people are interested in doing game development with this source material on their off-time. If it's anything like the new Unreal Tournament, that'd be great because there'll at least be a strong enough cult following to continue development (but that requires developer supervision which is the complete opposite of what this announcement is about). If it's like Xonotic (open source FPS similar to Unreal Tournament/Quake), then development will continue at an annual pace, but the community did segment between that and the now defunct Nexuiz. Thing is, devs of Xonotic are already considering a retail price because donationware isn't getting them anywhere, and working for free hurts, even as a hobby. My thoughts are this. Will open source segment the community? Will Serellan have time and resources to supervise any of this development in the long-term? How will Serellan profit from this when people can clone the game? How feasible is it to release it as a limited SDK where all you can do is basically mod Epsilon? Some of these answers seem obvious to me. No Serellan doesn't have time and resources to supervise a community developed project on a genre that people seem to ignore. Segmenting the community isn't an issue when say, three people know how to work with the source materials. And a limited SDK is a ton of work, otherwise everyone would've had mod tools as an option for every single game in existence. I guess those who bought the game having access to the source materials is the best idea we have. I just don't know how well that'll work in the long-run given the source code will be shared around the internet. It'll end up being a moot point as you mentioned Tom. At the same time, all I have are worries and not alternative suggestions, so... Who am I to judge?
  10. I'm sorry Christian. I don't really know what else to say. Just, I'm sorry. And Tom, thanks for doing all you could to support Epsilon. DarkSynopsis too. Thanks. I'll stick around in these forums though. See what happens as time passes. I'm also sorry to hear about the heart attack. That... Is pretty damn scary. As for my thoughts on Open Source, who will actually be able to figure out what to do with it (especially since it's existing materials to figure out)? Will it be an annual updates with minor changes and additions because people will work on it on and off? I mean, I doubt it'll be developed as quickly as the new Unreal Tournament. How many cheats will be online? And the most important question, how will Serellan profit off of this if the game becomes fleshed out enough to have an established community? I know the answer is "they wouldn't, and they haven't anyway" but it doesn't feel right to me that IF on the chance that somebody does figure out how to work with Epsilon's source materials, and fleshes out online features and a full campaign and whatnot in 5 years from now, Serellan gets nothing out of giving us the foundation. At the same time, if they choose to revoke the open source and take it all back and sell it, how many torches and pitchforks will come out from the community? I'm feeling ambivalent regarding open source. I'd rather let this be on Serellan's hands, but with some parts released so anybody can attempt to contribute to development. Problem behind that is of course, that this isn't a pie you can cut. HOW do you have time and resources to put together some kind of dev kit? The answer is Serellan probably doesn't have that time. I guess what I'm saying is, I'd prefer to have the community provide maps, models, animations, etc. but Serellan owns the game and not release it open source and lose any chance of ANY profits from working so hard on the Early Access development of Epsilon. That said, the concept is impractical to execute. So... I guess open source would be great? But it hurts to think that Serellan gets nothing out of this. I'm not entirely okay with that in mind. I don't know, I'm ambivalent right now, and still grieving over the tactical shooter genre, and Christian's no BS development attitude getting him this conclusion. This is reverse karma...
  11. Agreed! Agreed. Agreed. Cool! Never thought to look up voice actors who do Let's Plays. Bella Ryse is the brand manager of Serellan? I only know about her work in Real Game Media and her kind tweets in support of YouTubers I follow. When did that happen? *Looks it up.* Huh... Apparently for a very long time, likely more than a year. And possibly before she was even Editor In Chief at Real Game Media. And she's the voice in Hotel Blind? Ok seriously how long have I been living under this rock? I need to get out into the sun and see society again because holy crap I'm oblivious! Her Twitter clearly says she's the brand manager, geez... Well I'm an idiot. Couple of things? Interesting. Sounds like a possible multipart announcement.
  12. The challenge is that veterans from games like SWAT and Rainbow Six already know about Takedown: Red Sabre, and they're not giving Serellan another chance. And many of them are Kickstarter backers of Takedown, so they already have Epsilon for free. I'm not sure how many hardcore fans of classic SWAT/Rainbow Six are not aware of Takedown (and as Christian brought up in an interview, WHICH Rainbow Six is YOUR classic Rainbow Six? They're all different!). Basically the remaining ones who haven't actually played Takedown are the ones we can try to convince them into trusting that Epsilon is different, but I can't imagine them being a significant number to truly impact sales. I have a feeling the majority were backers and have the game already. I know of some YouTubers who have unique shows to showcase games, especially indie games, but currently Epsilon doesn't have enough content for them to want to show it off, and there are other games that their respective communities are unanimously requesting for. It would be easier to ask YouTubers after Epsilon becomes a meatier build, but the benefit is that I also know of some where the developers are online to answer questions during the show, and clear up any confusions the community/YouTuber may have. Then there are indie game resellers like Chrono.gg, etc. I remember somebody in these forums suggested Hot Pepper Gaming, where Christian would need to eat a ghost pepper and then try to promote the game while suffering (drinking milk and eating bread means you stop promoting and end your promotion there). Similar to the Hot Pepper Gaming review (finish reading the review before you can end your suffering), except it's to promote indie games called Fire Sale. But again, without more content, it's hard to get this game on anyone's radar for promotion. Not impossible since there's already Let's Plays and reviews on YouTube, but difficult none the less. I did convince one gaming website to stream the game on Twitch and commentate like a preview, but he didn't export to YouTube since he felt that it wasn't really substantial enough to garner further interest, so the archive expired unfortunately. Once Epsilon has enough Early Access content to satisfy most YouTubers, then I fully intend on bugging the editor of the gaming website to give it another go. Then I'll pass the word along to other places. Right now, giving you my suggestions wouldn't get far namely because they have too many indie games to play, with more content in their Early Access state. And many live shows require roughly 4 hours of variety, though some have circumvented this by playing more than one game on that day, in which case Epsilon could work but will suffer far less exposure, which is what happened to Blade Ballet and Super Slam Dunk Touchdown. Another thing some devs have done, was spend time and money on doing custom mods on builds meant for YouTubers to use. For instance, A Hat In Time has a custom made message for the show I follow. LISA has the freaking YouTubers IN the game, which is actually a contradiction since one of them is a female and the plot is supposed to have only one woman in the entire world, so something happens to um... Hilariously compensate for this. The Stanley Parable demo has the narrator record lines specifically for The Game Grumps (in fact, I'd say it REPLACES 80+% of the original dialogue). Custom builds are irritating work and costs time and money, but it will get you in a better position to be showcased and promoted, as well as have a chance to return for another show and gain further promotion. And fans remember what you've done as they rewatch highlight videos and become exposed to your game again. Of course the priority is obviously to focus on game content and not modding what you have that alienates the rest of your customers. The modding idea is something to think about later, when you have a build that YouTubers will be interested in covering beyond a short blurb in a video. And yeah I agree with you. Media isn't something we can rely on at this point, and I'll take any small victory too. I do like co-op so here's hoping things work out. Thanks again for all of your efforts. Much appreciated. Stay awesome Tom.
  13. I agree! Those publishers and executives lost out to a potentially huge market, by saying no to a zombie game using the SWAT 4 engine. As for zombies wielding guns? Doom. Those soldiers were space marines that ended up killed and reanimated as zombies with no humanity, but retain their military knowledge and training. As for NPCs named after staff? Good question, because that would be a fun and clever idea to do!
  14. Oh right, Sierra/Vivendi/Irrational Games and their licensing troubles... Good point. I loved the pre-planning in Rainbox Six for select games that actually used the map. Especially when they offered the 2D/3D map view for waypointing. THAT was cool! Even the N64 version offered waypointing. Oh yeah I totally forgot about the pepper spray, geez how did I forget that?! Would've been so much more practical than dropping a stinger grenade just to get people to listen to me! Also Sonny Bonds never had a voice, since the Police Quest series didn't have voice acting (wasn't a common feature back in those days), but he's in SWAT as a direct reference to SWAT being the spin-off of Police Quest, and later became its own series. Sonny Bonds is the main character you play in the Police Quest series. So I think SWAT 4 is the first time Sonny Bonds gets a voice actor to portray him. Apparently Sonny is also a playable character in SWAT 2, and Sonny's wife Marie talks about him in SWAT 3. And Marie? A direct reference to Sweet Cheeks Marie (I didn't make this name up I swear) who is a prostitute and love interest to Sonny Bonds in Police Quest 1. Apparently SWAT games have a tradition of referencing Police Quest for the fun of it. I dunno. Here's another piece of trivia. Ever wonder why the support snipers in SWAT are codenamed the way they are? I imagine you do know. But I thought it was a neat reference anyway. Last piece of trivia for the road: Irrational Games almost made a Left 4 Dead like game as a modded sequel to SWAT 4 too, but the publisher said nope because zombies are not tactical and it's stupid. Then Left 4 Dead came out and kicked butt. Funny how publishers don't know everything.
  15. That's a very good point. I can picture that happening with the internet being as toxic as it is. And you're right about co-op as well. Getting networking up and running will be irritating (though I'd like to think Unreal Engine has a solid netcode as a base to work with), but if Epsilon has enough exposure to make everyone aware that such a game exists, then co-op will boost the community, followed by more maps/weapons. Might even get YouTubers interested. It would create a positive domino effect provided it can pull some of the audience from Rainbow Six: Siege and even Ghost Recon: Wildlands. It'll be challenging as I believe co-op Epsilon will then compete against those two games. I know that Epsilon is different (especially IF co-op planning is feasible, as Due Process is the ONLY game to do it so far, as not even the original Rainbow Six had it for multiplayer), but the game will still be against the AAA offerings of "Terrorhunt" and that's where spreading the word will be more difficult. It'll definitely be up to us and YouTubers to spread the word, as the media keeps ignoring Christian (he had to REALLY bug Kotaku to play Epsilon at PAX in the past if I recall correctly). On the flip side, there isn't really enough content to entice the media either. Indie studios need to offer something meatier to get coverage, unlike teasers of AAA games that the media analyzes the heck out of. No Man's Sky and We Happy Few are some of the rare exceptions. Point is, the media isn't likely going to cover the game even if we have a sustainable community from co-op. And the game will be against AAA offerings that can scratch a similar itch (Terrorhunt). So it'll be up to the community to spread the word as much as possible to keep this game supported and help people notice how different this game is. Convincing YouTubers will be another challenge for us, but far more feasible than the media. Otherwise, co-op is useless. So I think we have a pretty decent idea of the state of Epsilon and the challenges it's currently facing. The real question is, when will the NDA be lifted so we can get hints on what's going on behind the scenes? For all we know, they might have secured funding and all of our speculation was hilariously unnecessary. And we'll see a large team build everything, getting all features in, best tech implemented, and somehow the rights remain with Christian/Serellan with the game coming out in Holiday 2017 or Spring 2018 in super polished form getting 75%+ on Metacritic/Opencritic. Who knows? I can dream can't I?