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Honvik

Plea to NQ. Support needs improvements urgently!

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Afternoon,

 

This is more of a plea to return to the status Quo especially for support.  Of course I do not know why powers were revoked but given the state of the game maybe it is time to improve it once again?  The reason for it is as follows:

 

Previously support could assist in teleporting you back to constructs and even fix your construct quite quickly especially if it was a game breaking bug.  Yesterday for example I was helping with mining and suddenly whilst flying the core exploded but nothing else.  Thankfully the ship glided down with only one engine blowing up on impact.  Of course for me I was in the middle of nowhere! so to try to fix and replace the core was a nightmare.  Previously a quick message to support would fix it linking to a ticket.  Now it is wait days for someone to come fix it.

 

Today a colleague of mine in my org ticket number #44617. was flying in Warp when the server died.  Of course assuming that the new physics was in place so would continue with the journey it would of been fine, however in his case he logged in 2SU out from the planet he started at with all his warp cells gone.  Thus slow boating was the only option.  The poor guy started to do this risking PVP space but still in the 'safe zone' suddenly the whole ship blew up.  He was ported to Ailoth and logged his ticket.  With no response he managed to get back to see the damage only to find his construct on the actual planet!.  Still he waited no reply, logged in game as well as mentioned it on discord.  On the old system it would have been sorted instantly.  On the new system still no response!.

 

We need a return to how it was game breaking bugs affecting players puts them off playing.  Most of us adapt to the issues but imagine losing loads and having to re-start?  You only really need to look around and see people commenting on how poor support is these days to realise something is wrong.  

 

Finally I love DU the whole premise of the game is amazing and what keeps me here is being part of an Org trying to establish some form of cohesion to make it enjoyable for now and the future, what I dont want is to see unhappy players, people quitting over support issues or gamebreaking bugs.

 

Many thanks

 

Honvik

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My ship got absolutely trashed after crashing into nothing whilst moving slowly between two tiles - my support ticket has been in for 2 weeks now.  Ive cancelled my subscription -  its just not playable and feels like its falling apart which is a huge shame, because pre #23 I was totally in love.

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So sorry about the change in support, folks! We had to free up the Discord #help channel of teleport requests because it was clogging up the queue there.

For bug related mishaps, your best bet is to ticket for a teleport. For all other teleportation scenarios, there are plenty of players and orgs that will offer their services to you.

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24 minutes ago, JoeKing said:

My ship got absolutely trashed after crashing into nothing whilst moving slowly between two tiles - my support ticket has been in for 2 weeks now.  Ive cancelled my subscription -  its just not playable and feels like its falling apart which is a huge shame, because pre #23 I was totally in love.

With the current ticket response times I've found the game a lot more enjoyable when I  deal with the bugs rather than wait for a fix. Filing a bug report is good for tracking, but not relying on a response to fix the ship will get you back out flying much more quickly. It's frustrating, but working around the bugs seems like the easiest path right now.

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2 hours ago, NQ-Naunet said:

So sorry about the change in support, folks! We had to free up the Discord #help channel of teleport requests because it was clogging up the queue there.

For bug related mishaps, your best bet is to ticket for a teleport. For all other teleportation scenarios, there are plenty of players and orgs that will offer their services to you.

 

Of course it would and It was responded to on Discord and in game but zero responses to either.  Previously this was resolved within an hour or quicker with someone teleporting but also fixing it due to a game breaking bug.  If you looked at the ticket it is not a cheap scenario to overcome.   I just want the status quo back and surely you want happy players?  Game breaking bugs should not make people unhappy or adversely affect them,

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Please check out this post I made some weeks back, as I feel it may help everyone's understanding of who does what in terms of support (whew this old post is getting a workout today):
 

 

TL;DR -

  • Community Helpers = volunteer players who pitch in to lend support where needed in the community. 
  • Moderators = volunteer players who assist others and enforce the rules on Discord and here in the forums.
  • GMs = employees who provide in-game support, but who are limited in doing so; their role is to direct players to the proper resources as needed. They pass information up to the CMs and help us provide more round-the-clock community coverage.
  • CS = employees who officially respond to support tickets. 
  • CMs = employees (like myself) who serve as the main messengers that carry information between players and the rest of the development team, and vice versa. (Similar to a GM). We also handle the running of contests, official announcements and general community engagement. Unlike GMs, CMs do not appear in-game to provide support.


Moderators and Community Helpers don't have access to NQ's ticketing system because they are unpaid volunteers. They're (incredible) people on the ground who can filter these things up to us, because we can't be everywhere at once. That's their function. They don't work for us, so please don't get angry with them if they aren't able to give you the kind of support you're after.

The GMs in-game have a bit more reach, as they are employees, but they also do not touch support tickets. They're the next tier up, but they're not the be-all-end-all.

The support staff that handle tickets are working through the backlog in priority. This will take time, and that's not something I necessarily need to repeat... you're all feeling it.

 

Having said all of that, YES. Yes of course we want happy players. If I could singlehandedly run around assisting everyone instantaneously, I truly would. I care very much about your collective experience not only inside of DU but with NQ as well.

Know that everyone under the banner of community works tirelessly within the boundaries of their respective roles to bring you the answers, support and fun you all seek. I'm very sorry it hasn't been feeling that way.

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1 hour ago, Honvik said:

Previously this was resolved within an hour or quicker with someone teleporting but also fixing it due to a game breaking bug.

Also, to address this directly - when the game community was a bit smaller, it seems it was viable to provide this level of support. Things 'blew up' and we had to scale back lest we set a really big precedent we couldn't live up to.

At some point, we have to tighten things up and start preparing a scalable process in preparation for launch. It's better to do these things sooner rather than later, as you've all pointed out many a time whenever we release things. ;)

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45 minutes ago, NQ-Naunet said:

when the game community was a bit smaller

Don’t worry, it will get smaller again if not only support is scaled back, but also tools for the players to help themselves are removed.

As long as the game is as unstable as it is, which is perfectly fine during early access, people should not get randomly set back due to bugs. So either fix at least some of them, scale support back up, or and this is my favourite, give the players the tools to help themselves back. Removing fetch, implementing a very undercooked "resume speed" feature and nerfing manuever tool was not helpful. It would also be nice if ships are immune to damage below 50kmh, so you can maneuver a craft out of another without risking utter destruction.

Having bugs is easier to tolerate if NQ didnt put active effort into making the bugs worse by removing tools to circumvent them.

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1 hour ago, NQ-Naunet said:

Also, to address this directly - when the game community was a bit smaller, it seems it was viable to provide this level of support. Things 'blew up' and we had to scale back lest we set a really big precedent we couldn't live up to.

At some point, we have to tighten things up and start preparing a scalable process in preparation for launch. It's better to do these things sooner rather than later, as you've all pointed out many a time whenever we release things. ;)

Of course I know this would be the case but closer to actual launch.  In its current state there so much fustration even by your own discord theres more people complaining than are happy.  Look at this video please my colleague tried to even go rescue his ship Replay 2021 01 14 - Failed Warp - YouTube this is why support is needed and why the old way worked perfectly.  Dont upset your playerbase,  Lets help them enjoy and bug report.

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5 minutes ago, Honvik said:

Of course I know this would be the case but closer to actual launch.  In its current state there so much fustration even by your own discord theres more people complaining than are happy.  Look at this video please my colleague tried to even go rescue his ship Replay 2021 01 14 - Failed Warp - YouTube this is why support is needed and why the old way worked perfectly.  Dont upset your playerbase,  Lets help them enjoy and bug report.

It worked perfectly for those that needed a quick teleport, but it was placing a lot of strain on the (and I can't emphasize this enough) unpaid people who were fielding the requests. They needed the relief our change brought - we can't afford to burn out the kind people who give us their free time to support the DU community.

Yes, we (NQ) need to address bugs before we launch features and processes alike, but this is where we're at with this bug scenario in particular and we're going to have to continue trying to work with it as-is until it's fixed.

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I think NQ needs to embrace the fact that when you make "risk vs reward" deadly serious, in a game, that makes every little bug deadly serious too.

 

There's only really three options i can think of to fix this right now.

 

1. Fix all the bugs.

 

2. Remove "risk vs reward" mechanics until all the bugs are fixed.

 

3.  Hire enough support staff so that they can handle the number of tickets that are coming in.

 

One is impossible, two sucks, and three is expensive.

 

But they need to pick one.

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4 hours ago, NQ-Naunet said:

Also, to address this directly - when the game community was a bit smaller,

 

I'm sorry but this argument really does not hold water at all. _Especially_ as your community grows, being on the ball with support matters becomes increasingly important and NQ current has no control of the process, nor do they show ownership of the issues with their support system.

 

The teleport request situation did not get out of hand because of the growth of the community, it got out of hand because from the outset NQ set the incorrect expectations and did not structure nor put boundaries on the requests. And that is pattern with NQ, you pretty much learn on the job and make stuff up along the way which leads to the very situation NQ finds itself in in an increasing fashion.

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13 hours ago, fiddlybits said:

With the current ticket response times I've found the game a lot more enjoyable when I  deal with the bugs rather than wait for a fix. Filing a bug report is good for tracking, but not relying on a response to fix the ship will get you back out flying much more quickly. It's frustrating, but working around the bugs seems like the easiest path right now.

Thats what I did the first time it happened, unfortunately its happened twice, I spent the last of my money getting a ride back, I have a cargo hold full of t4 but no money, no means to get it to a market, or even to get back or replace the broken elements, so its game over.

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10 hours ago, Atmosph3rik said:

One is impossible, two sucks, and three is expensive.

 

But they need to pick one.

I totally agree with your number 1 and 3, but the risk vs reward does not have to be removed, just handled smarter.

The problem with alt+f4 brake was that some people would abuse it to safe their ships when they would otherwise crash, some people used to to just decelerate after a long space trip. Sadly the removal meant that people with an honest game crash often crashed their ships, too. Especially if there was another person around.

What they could do is to tokenize the ship the moment the pilot hat a DC (or alt+f4) and stop all speed. Once the pilot is on again, he is in the seat and gets the pop up tp press "y" to continue flight. The pilot can first change camera angle, go into 3rd person view, or just wait a few seconds for the surrounding terrain to be loaded, press his button and continue his journey.

That way nobody is stranded in space with zero speed, nobody can emergency brake, using the non-moving ship’s cargo is not possible (tokenized) or remove valuable parts is not possible. It really just gets rid of any way to abuse the system, while still not causing the problems the normal current "return speed" mechanic has.


Whenever a game mechanic sees too much abuse, it is not necessary to kill it with a hammer, just brainstorm a little, even ask the community for ideas, and make a decision that either gets rid of the exploit without damaging anybody or get rid of the reason people want to use certain exploits.


 

 

10 hours ago, NQ-Naunet said:

but it was placing a lot of strain on the (and I can't emphasize this enough) unpaid people who were fielding the requests

Did getting rid of the fetch command, nerfing the maneuver tool and continuing speed after dc increase or decrease the number of inquiries?

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12 hours ago, blazemonger said:

 

I'm sorry but this argument really does not hold water at all. _Especially_ as your community grows, being on the ball with support matters becomes increasingly important and NQ current has no control of the process, nor do they show ownership of the issues with their support system.

 

The teleport request situation did not get out of hand because of the growth of the community, it got out of hand because from the outset NQ set the incorrect expectations and did not structure nor put boundaries on the requests. And that is pattern with NQ, you pretty much learn on the job and make stuff up along the way which leads to the very situation NQ finds itself in in an increasing fashion.

Yeah, and I addressed that: "...it [meaning the kind of widespread support we offered previously] was placing a lot of strain on the (and I can't emphasize this enough) unpaid people who were fielding the requests. They needed the relief our change brought - we can't afford to burn out the kind people who give us their free time to support the DU community."

The structure we had before placed undo strain on the mods & helpers. We changed the support structure so that we could do exactly as you're suggesting - to set better, more reasonable expectations and boundaries. Bring us your bugs, lend one another a hand with other kinds of teleportation.

 

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5 hours ago, Gottchar said:

Did getting rid of the fetch command, nerfing the maneuver tool and continuing speed after dc increase or decrease the number of inquiries?

 

I don't know the specific contents of the ticket backlog, Gottchar, but I understand the point you're trying to make.

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1 hour ago, NQ-Naunet said:

I understand the point you're trying to make

and I know this wasnt your idea, and that you will pass my point on.

 

There are plenty nice ideas floating around how to deal with bugs or the general bug situation until they can be properly fixed (or until the bugged system gets replaced and there is no need to fix the bug). So far I and plenty of people I know have the feeling that posting them on the forums is pointless, if you continue to be active here that feeling will change. So, good work there.

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2 hours ago, NQ-Naunet said:

Yeah, and I addressed that:

 

I know that sure. The point was though that this happened after the fact, basically once the backlog was already out of control. It's not your fault obviously and I get your angle.

 

For me a big issue right now is the loss of urgency and validity of reporting into the CS team due to the extreme long queue wait time. At several times NQ has said they were progressing in this but there is nothing that shows this is actually the case. That bug reports get stuck in the queue and can do so for weeks on end is really not good.

 

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2 hours ago, NQ-Naunet said:

Yeah, and I addressed that: "...it [meaning the kind of widespread support we offered previously] was placing a lot of strain on the (and I can't emphasize this enough) unpaid people who were fielding the requests. They needed the relief our change brought - we can't afford to burn out the kind people who give us their free time to support the DU community."

The structure we had before placed undo strain on the mods & helpers. We changed the support structure so that we could do exactly as you're suggesting - to set better, more reasonable expectations and boundaries. Bring us your bugs, lend one another a hand with other kinds of teleportation.

 

 

But in the cases I outlined there is no refunding or lost items, no replenishment of damage etc for game some people are paying a monthly fee for.  Even when logs, screens are provided.  A number of times for example My ship bugged out and on re-logging I was -3000 underground.  It took hours for a response and 2 days for it to be placed back on the ground.  Another was post removal of fetch and the reply was get someone to help you.  It isnt my fault the construct shot off into space and froze!.

 

That said I know where you are coming from its just you cannot go down this path when the game is as bug ridden as it currently is.  Should my colleague lost 8 million quanta in warp cells?  Should he have to repair the ship he build costing a further several million in scrap?  Some may say go mine to get that quanta back but it is the time it takes to generate money and not everyone has unlimited time to go do that form of money making.

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The issue isn't really support....support would have all the bandwidth in the world if the game wasn't so buggy.

 

The core issue is that there's so many bugs, support is constantly backlogged. I hope that no one really thinks that NQ's support just isn't doing their job...I think they're doing the best they can with the amount of tickets and staff. 

 

The real way to improve support is to eliminate bugs...which is supposedly the point of doing beta testing to begin with. I think NQ's dev team is more focused on feature dev and game balance (things they should have knocked out in alpha) rather than bug fixes, so of course support will always be struggling to stay on top of things. 

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5 minutes ago, michaelk said:

The core issue

 

With regards to the support team, if there was an actual triage done on the incoming tickets the team would be able to better prioritize and bucket the tickets. What this means is that, for instance bug reports get picked up and passed on faster as the CS team do not actually do anything wit these. Currently it seems that they only pick up tickets related to log in issues quickly and the rest just stays in the queue. It just seem there is no real management of the queue which is IMO a big reason why the backlog remains in place.  Having been in this business for many years in management capacity I see the signs all over.. 

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