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Old 09-06-2016, 05:30 PM   #1
FubarBundy
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Default Mission design under valued by ED?

Hi all,
This is, in some part, a reaction to FlightControl's decision to stop work on the wonderful Moose project and, in some part, a rant that's been a long time coming.

I have been running a server, (CoffinDodger) for some time now but it is presently down. Initially this was due to a hardware failure but it has stayed down because of the time it takes to find workarounds and fixes for long known bugs and problems within the scripting engine.

I have posted along these lines before but will state it again... DCS, no matter how fantastic the flight models and no matter how beautiful the aircraft models etc.. would be pretty much meaningless without the scenarios created by the mission making community.

I am no programmer but, thanks the the likes of FlightControl, Grimes, Ciribob et al and the frameworks and scripts they have created, even I have been able to produce some pretty decent missions which, (connection issues aside), have proved to be quite popular at times.

In truth, FlightControl's decision to leave the Moose project involves personal reasons but there is also a deep frustration with the way ED interacts with the mission building community.

This is not surprising as the interaction is little to none!. There are mission editor bugs which have been around for months, (if not years) and these cause all mission builders to tear their hair out regularly trying to find workarounds and fixes for things that just don't work as they should in the first place.

We all understand that any piece of software as big in scope as DCS will always have bugs and problems but it is the lack of communication, feedback and assistance from ED which is the problem.

I find this bizarre as I see mission design as fully 50% of DCS and, from where I'm standing, this 50% of DCS seems to be woefully under supported and under valued by ED.

Every week we get a newsletter telling us about the latest bundle offer or modules in development etc.. (not knocking that because its a good thing), but could ED not also put up news regarding features and plans for the scripting engine?.
Could ED staff and or 3rd party developers not post their own tips and pointers regarding how to get the most out of the mission editor or even have somebody respond to queries and maybe even give out little snippets of code in response to feature requests?

Please understand, I am not knocking DCS or ED but I am puzzled as to why the mission builders and server hosts get so little support and attention. I strongly believe this should change because DCS has the potential to be something truly amazing.

People like FlightCcontrol are an asset of untold value and should be recognised as such, not driven away by frustration.

Anyway, rant over. Hope somebody from ED reads this and understands what I'm getting at.
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Old 09-06-2016, 05:45 PM   #2
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I for one totally agree with you, ED should look at the way Bohemia Interactive works with it's customers. It's even in their name. Come on ED pls less weekend sales and more getting it right. thanks.
I must admit that I am getting a tad frustrated with all the niggling bugs that seem to be ignored.
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Old 09-06-2016, 07:16 PM   #3
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I am a mission builder to my squadron and ocassionally I made some scripts. I feel the same way as you mentioned.

I love DCS and I have been flying it since Flanker 1.0, and I still will fly it loooong time . But, we need some care with the Mission building.

The day you ED get that, you will get much more fans from other Simualtion Games. Dont need to mention what I am talking about.
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Old 09-06-2016, 07:40 PM   #4
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Yeah couldn't agree more.

Such a shame this seems to be a non priority thing to ED. Its all well and good stuffing more and more air frames into the sim, but without the content to use these, whats the point...

Surely ED could dedicate one staff member to at least explore the option of creating something, in many way similar to MOOSE. Just a developer backed attempt to at least give us the tools to create something.

A good solid framework for a dynamic system which can be implemented across maps and the modularity to plug any DCS module into it. Is as important to the future of this sim as the two other major areas i feel are neglected. Namely dedicated servers & the scaling / visibilty of aircraft.

I cant help but see the potential, but i fear this potential isn't going to be realised for a long long time.

Last edited by Shadow.D.; 09-06-2016 at 07:53 PM.
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Old 09-06-2016, 08:16 PM   #5
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As FC was told when he brought up issues, they have been reported and will be fixed when they can, but ED's priorities are 2.5 and the merging of all these versions we have right now. We all have things we would like fixed or added, but that doesnt mean ED can stop what they are doing and do what we want.

Mission design is FAR from under valued by ED, obviously they know how important it is, but they are currently hard at moving the sim forward with the new graphics engine and new terrains and such.
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Old 09-06-2016, 09:24 PM   #6
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No right answer here, is there?

The OP is spot on. And yet Sith is correct as well.

I can tell you this -- I would like to 'develop' for DCS as a content creator but I need a stable platform. So I play with it from time to time, until I realize that I cannot do the things that I really want to do, or until what I created gets broken by the next iteration of DCS. Now some will say 'oh who the hell are you' to think that I have something of value to offer - and to that I will say, maybe I don't, but if there are 99 others out there just like me, then pretty soon the talented ones will begin to emerge, and ED and the whole community benefits. It is a bit frustrating when you look at what we have and imagine what it could be. Just not sure it has to be that way.

I found MOOSE to be very interesting, in what it can do now and what it can potentially do. I still think its time is coming yet. I hope we'll see more of this in the future.

Anyway..... I suppose opinions are like 'you know what' (everybody has one).
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Old 09-06-2016, 09:31 PM   #7
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Hi Sithspawn,
well at least that is some feedback so thank you.
Like I said though, in and of themselves, the bugs aren't so much the issue... its the, (at least as it seems to me), lack of support and guidance for people working with the mission editor.
And yes, we all do have things we want fixing but surely the mission editor is a priority for the sim as a whole and should be prioritised.. at least in terms of giving info about what does and doesn't work and any workarounds known to the ED team themselves?
Please understand that none of this is being said out of animosity... actually quite the reverse. We are all huge DCS fans who just want to make our flying environment as good as we can.
Again though, thanks for the feedback.
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Old 09-06-2016, 11:36 PM   #8
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Im kind of in the same camp as Ripcord. I made over 20 .miz over at [DoW] that we hosted on our server and just finally burnt out. The time and frustration to keep multiplayer missions running smoothly became too much of a factor so I stepped away for a much needed vacation from the ME. That editor and the subsequent behavior of AI really is the only place in DCS that i do not enjoy at the moment... truth be told, I have been enjoying my mission making hiatus immensely by re-kindling my love affair with old and new modules on other servers. (f5-E = awesome sauce)

I'll return to mission making but for the time being I'm exhausted from the fiddling about. MOOSE looks fantastic but unfortunately still requires some significant investments to maintain release candidates and I wasn't surprised to see FC step away... it reminded me of the insane amount of work SNAFU/Stonehouse/Lukrop put into the Dynamic CAP/GCI scripts - so much potential but ultimately it was fractured and suffered a slippery slope of QA testing and fiddling.

TL;DR I'm also looking forward to changes with the ME and AI behaviour.
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Old 09-08-2016, 05:54 PM   #9
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I can't really relate to MP as I've never created an MP mission, but as far as SP missions go, I've created a fair few and have always been grateful for ED providing free hosting for them. In many ways the DCS "user files" section is the equivalent of "steam works" for DCS World.

Having tighter and perhaps more automated integration between the user files area of the site and the actual game would be nice (in-game mod browser with the ability to automate download & installation of mods would be perfect) but I don't think that user content is under valued as such.

Hopefully once 2.5 has been released we might see some attention given to long-standing minor issues.
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Old 09-09-2016, 06:18 PM   #10
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As a very amateur mission builder for my squad, I am just waiting for the ability to place static objects on the map in 3D! This was a feature that was supposed to have come out with 2.0. It is the most time consuming and frustrating things about the ME (keeping in mind my amateur status, not even dealing with scripts yet). For a sim with such beautiful static objects and scenery to place them in, I find it very hard to understand how this has been overlooked for so long. As with IL-2, the mission building is more than 50% of the enjoyment for me with this sim and without it, there would be very little for everyone to do outside of canned missions that come with the different modules.
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