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Was this some sort of, demonstration?

  • Atropos
    Atropos
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    Tag me in,
    Wykkyd wrote: »
    I am not going to read every post in this thread. I'm not going to weigh in on who's more right than anyone else or who worded what poorly. At the end of the day you're all just users of Zenimax Online Studios' product. And that's the crux of it.

    @ZOS_GinaBruno‌, and the rest of your team, I'm going to give you a bit of advice: Disable Lua addon support entirely. Your API is overly, unreasonably limited and when it comes down to it it's fairly obvious that your company either does not really concern themselves with Lua or the API any further than as an afterthought, or that your company is utterly clueless on how to properly manage it.

    API updates must be announced in advance of upcoming patches clearly so that your addon developers (IE: those people who dedicate their free time to improving your product and garnering you additional users and accounts through their voluntary, unpaid support) can adapt to your API changes in advance and possibly even provide feedback before you cross that point of no return.

    This kind of update has become standard for ZOS and ESO. 0 warning, just pull the trigger. Leave your addon authors guessing because, well, why not... they'll just figure it all out again anyway, right?

    If I handled my day job as poorly as your API team does there jobs I wouldn't have my job. I've been in Information Technology for 22 years. I've been programming in one capacity or another for 28 years. I've been on good teams, bad teams, Waterfall projects, Scrum projects, Agile projects, blended cobbled together horribly managed projects, etc. Whatever excuses anyone wants to bat around for the way things are being handled, trust me... I've heard them. Whatever challenge you think you're facing, trust me... I've faced it (and for a lot more serious industries such as military & healthcare). Rest assured, none of the excuses make up for it.

    So... just stop. Turn it off. Be a game with a non-customisable UI like you obviously want to be and just be done with it.

    I've clocked almost two thousand hours working on addons, a website and talking to communities for this game since October 2013 pre and post launch and while I enjoy playing it I'm || close to just dumping all of my projects and walking away... mostly from the lack of "care" that I see for the subset of your community that I'm a part of.

    First of all, thank you @Wykkyd for posting that, because it will save me from re-iterating several of your points.

    Unlike Wykkyd, I am not an experienced professional developer, but like him I have been deeply frustrated with the lack of care put into managing the addon author community. My own development experience consists of mostly solo projects, the most significant of which are Foundry Tactical Combat using ESO's API, and Tamriel Foundry itself which runs WordPress.

    Seeing the level of care which WordPress developers invest into their choices regarding when, how, and why to change their underlying code base casts the way that ZOS has managed the ESO API into stark contrast.

    You can tell that the library provided by WordPress is their product, a product they take a lot of pride in. While you can see similar shreds of pride in ESO as ZeniMax' product, I cannot credibly believe that the ESO API is held in that same regard, nor does ZOS seem proud of it or its features. The lack of communication and respect for people who use the tools provided to addon authors, the tendency to make sweeping modifications of the API without prior warning or notification, the defensive stance towards addon creators by requiring addon authors to include a disclaimer absolving ZOS of responsibility, and the requirement for addon users to approve a TOS absolving ZOS of the same responsibility are all are symptoms of the fact that ZOS does not really support addons, addon authors, or even end users.

    I had expected someone to make the rebuttal to Wykkyd's post, saying that we have the ability to test new API changes on the PTS prior to their release. A brief anecdote, if you will:

    Upon the launch of the second major patch version (1.2), myself and my guild members spent considerable time on the PTS the day prior to the patch launch making changes to FTC both required and allowed by the new API version. These API changes were not yet documented, so we had to figure a number of things out by trial and error. At the end of the day, I was really proud of some of the new FTC features which I had been able to provide. Features which lasted less than 48 hours before ZeniMax patched API functions which they used out of the game without warning.

    You have immediate, unannounced, undocumented, and backwards-incompatible API changes which make life difficult for your own paying customers and addon developers on one hand. You have actual game-breaking exploits like the infinite Darkshade Caverns farm which have existed since the launch of the game and are only now being corrected 4 months later on the other.

    I have pretty much run out of steam for addon development in ESO. It's simply not worth the headache knowing that your hours of hard work could be obliterated at a moments notice.

    I'm not sure where things like this leave me except with a feeling of...detached amusement. Screw it, I agree with @Wykkyd. Just remove the API entirely and make the game interface contain the exact functionality (or lack thereof) that you want it to have.
    Edited by Atropos on July 7, 2014 5:33PM
    Creator - Tamriel Foundry
    Author - Foundry Tactical Combat
    Guild Master - Entropy Rising
    Noob - Twitch streamer.
  • GrfxGawd
    GrfxGawd
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    Atropos wrote: »
    ...I had expected someone to make the rebuttal to Wykkyd's post, saying that we have the ability to test new API changes on the PTS prior to their release..
    From my experience with other online games, I've always held the notion, "What happens on the PTS, stays on the PTS". I discovered that the hard way back in the early days of WoW.

    I had not yet finished up my little "addon/utility" before the last major patch. And after it, I seriously doubt it'll ever see completion. I suspect when my paid time expires I'll be "Elsewyre".
    You know, I was once an optimistic gamer just like you. Then I took a patch to the game client from Zenimax.
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