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Posts posted by oktane

  1. Dwarden shows up, drop a bomb and leave it ticking? Not fun. ¬¬

    Haw, he always does that. Always carrying satchels that only sometimes explode. :D

    Here is an old post from last year.. I really think that on the MP side, improvements with addon syncronization to help new/non technical players, as well as vast usability fixes (accessablity now a swear word too? :D) would really help. After all, while there are tons of single player users, I believe the vast majority play public or private MP with their mates. And that's just what people want these days, either story SP, or some sort of MP. The MP has always been great with the Arma series, when you see past the multitude of issues. A really big one that has always been missing is some sort of social features built into the game to find the server your buds are on, or at least keep tabs on players that you've had quality games with so you can play with them again. Right now, the game requires you to find a group to play with or a very well admin'd server to get any good public play on.. and the new users are all going to start out playing public for their first impressions and to find their style of play, favorite server, gaming group, etc. So that impression there matters, imo. I highlighted those parts below that I refer to above. Since then I've sort of taking a break from the hell that was being a public server admin, I just play an occasional 2 man coop on the LAN. :cool:

    Huge post behind spoiler.. clicky

    source: 200+ page thread, ugh.. http://forums.bistudio.com/showthread.php?p=1625042#post1625042

    • Arma is a pretty hard to use, open ended simulator game, created at the dawn of the sandbox era.
    • People are busy, especially in the US. This leads to impatience, frustration with an ever more complex life. Maybe we over here have a grass is greener work life kind of thing compared to say Europe. This could be totally wrong, it's based on a personal opinion.
    • Most people have no insight to how game development works, or the very limited resources of an indie studio. They expect multi-million dollar budgets and the team, process, polish that comes with that. (as in manpower implied, not so much brains.. because we all know of many big budget turds) This is in contrast to the 'old days' of gaming, when the expectations were much lower and on a more human level, rather than the assembly line blockbuster machine we have now.
    • They expect more and more, address our problems now, boycott this or that, selfish brat attitudes. It seems to get worse as life gets more complex. (or maybe I am just an old dude now? sigh) I try not to ask of things unless I have exhausted all possible resources I can think of.
    • On the game developer side, the market is shrinking for PC games, and has been for quite a few years unfortunately. Dev's blame all kinds of things, piracy a big one, yadda, but I hope everyone can agree that the modern console is killing it. It just isn't profitable unless you already have a foothold with a brand or genre. People that used to maintain their gaming computers and game libraries have now settled on the reasonably high quality of console games and the luxuries that provides. (along with apparently settling with the negative aspects, such as 12yo's spamming racial slurs into your headset) I think it's bit of a cultural thing too, going with the whole complex life thing. People like simple, easy to use, even if the game being played isn't that simple itself.
    • Consoles have a lot of 'social-integration' features and are based on a very well thought out and very well supported platform. (especially the XDK for the 360, PS3 sdk is a nightmare honestly) The delivery systems are superb. People want to connect, have fun, not learn complex systems(six updater, teamspeak, addons), deal with hardware and operating systems.. all of these things add up to kill the PC Gaming for other than a few niche footholds. (like MMO's, accessible + competitive + polished FPS's(TF2), and simulators-especially flight sims)

    • Since Arma crosses a few genre boundaries, our possible target audience is decreased due to that modern console exodus.
    • PC milsim market is niche for many reasons, and this seems to create a bit of pride and elitism, some for good, some for bad. Or maybe it's just the kind of person that this game attracts. Some people are put off by this. Others wonder what drives a person to be an evangelist of such things and discovers something wonderful.
    • Dare I say OFP/Arma has always striven to be the very definition of 'feature-bloat' and 'scope creep', treating it in almost a non-negative way. (!) And even though those features are often buggy, some unfinished, and yet I still love them. They represent the imagination of the devs at BIS, and even the community of which they often give and take from. Aiming so high, their vision seemingly unfettered by milestones, scrum meetings and shareholder demands like most developers have to deal with.
    • But certain things become a detriment to even the most patient of players... The addon system for example, we have people here saying it's easy, well it isn't for most folks. I don't know what you're smoking but give me some! I am a 'supporter', I help a lot of people with the problems that come with this game, often (much to my dismay) when I'm trying to play it.. but I can't help it. I don't want people to give up, to get fed up with it, because then they are gone from an already small pool...
    • If you've been in the game industry, you are familiar with what is lovingly referred to as 'programmer art'. Arma seems to have what I'd call a 'programmer gui' (funny pic) You could go on and on about this but what it all boils down to is the end user experience. Specifically, I refer to a new player, unable to join servers with required addons, error boxes providing no meaningful info, barely usable yet commonly accessed interfaces (server list, mission select list (ffs, same as ofp's!)) Because of the indie nature however, the developers (and rightly so) instead devote their effort into more substantial gameplay improvements. But the problem is that all of these little things add up. And a new player doesn't care about improvements over the last version, because he didn't know about or have the last version. All he experiences if lucky are some awesome battles and a lot of usability issues. (even though he doesn't know anything about usability, ui design, etc.. he doesn't have to. He's a user and experiences the design failures firsthand, the game fails him in that aspect.)
    • For some of the issues, I've made some CIT tickets for. This brings up another issue, the communities inability to agree on anything. Some people would rather have no solution at all if they disagree with a single thing. Take the addon auto-downloading issue here. People entirely miss the point and think that a 3rd party solution is best. Sure best for them, because people forget about the big picture. And they, being Arma power-users so to say, perhaps it is better for them to use Yoma's. But that doesn't help that possible future player I mentioned, who has no knowledge of these 3rd party systems. His first impression. Not to mention, that again, this time because of Yoma's limited resources, his updating app has resembled a submarine control panel for most of it's existence. Same goes for Six-Updater! (and no offense intended to either, I greatly admire and respect the people that contribute tirelessly to this community with more than forum posts) Back to that player, we as admins cannot even tell them to go here or there to get so and so addon pack, all they get is a generic error box 'you cannot play this mission, depends on xyz_cryptic_classname', wtf does that mean to them? To them it means this game sucks, it's half assed, which to me is frustrating because they may miss out on the real fun experience in game on that server. But it's those small things that add up. As public server/newbie friendlyadmins, we are stuck in this tug of war, player count vs content. When add content to make our regulars happy, we unintentionally destroy any chance of getting that less-informed player in to have fun. Only when a huge all-in-one pack comes out like ACE are we able to add that content, since again it's *easier* to manage. (then again maybe not, since Six Updater keeps breaking for people frequently) This extends across many elements of MP, required addons making 3rd party tools necessary, kick messages for custom files, deficiencies in the voip system leading to using 3rd party apps, the list goes on.
    • People that think that the game should be some kind of secret indie hit, we don't need new people, we don't like those people, we don't want to attract those people.. well those people were all US at one point. Get your heads out of your asses and realize that having a few thousand more players is not going to dent your ego. There will still be niches of players that like one style of play(see TF2), servers that enforce certain gameplay rules(see TF2), everything we have now and love. There will just be more people, more excitement in large battles, more serious players you'd like to play with. If you don't open the door, nobody can get in, whether you like them or not. It's a chicken-egg scenario. Compare this to this, and think of what an awesome difference just a few thousand players could do to the scene.

    I should mention that I am not a console gamer, I'm an A2 player. ;) If/when I play MP games, it's always been OFP/ArmA/A2 for the most part, cooping with a close friend since around 2002. But ironically I spend most of my time helping other people with their A2 problems or with my head in mission code. I own a console (360) only because I got one for free from work, my girlfriend likes to play it sometimes, but I could never get into it because I'm naturally a tinkerer. (code, wires, anything) I do not think A2 should be a console game, even if it's sales will forever suffer as a result. (I don't think it's plausable to consider the game scope working on a console and without community mods) I worked dev support inside the game industry for a measly 5 years (at a place that originally did PC games and transitioned to cross platform) but I learned a lot of interesting things about the trials those teams go through to make games. I defended PC gaming's merits to my similarly aged peers (I was a minority!) until I was faced with hard sales numbers and realized my misconceptions and narrow sightedness about the niche PC gaming market. I also felt there was a large disconnect between how BIS does things compared to the rest of the industry. As such, it almost feels as if A2 is not a game but something more worth while for me, a hobby? It's just a bit obscured under some oily rags and newspapers.

    Anyways this is long enough. I hope you'll all vote on any of the CIT issues (see sig + list below) with the core vision in mind, the same as this thread, to make it more popular so that we can all have a better time. Even if you do not agree with every tiny detail, the consequences are far worse, like not having enough players for a good ol game of blowing shit up. New players would benefit all parts of our community ecosystem, except possibly the patience of the forum mods. :D I'm not going to subscribe to this thread because it's kind of hopeless to me, sadly. Instead I want to enjoy the fun while it lasts.


    Cheers and much respect, oktane (really really sorry for wall-o-text)



    ...snip.. I think I know exactly what you want. I call them usability improvements. Like a friends list in game.. so you play with a dude, you can click a star next to his name in the player list and then you can see what server he's on or send him a chat. Basic tools to keep the community connected.

    Right now there are friends playing arma.. but they aren't necessarily playing together. And maybe you'll meet someone that you'd like to play coop with again.. but the game doesn't help you remember who that was.

    Have you used Steam at all? I'd say it's a bit like that. More channels of communication between players other than the standard join server + chat way... because you can't always GET ON the server.. (addons, locked, full, etc)

    New players don't know where forums are or what TS server to join. The BASIC, i say again BASIC features are required in the game itself, out of the box.

    The integration is already there.. it was in ArmA1.. for the canned 360 version. (hit esc, see 'Friends' list)

    Cheers and keep up the good discussion! I hope that it helps the devs.. when the thread grows to 200 pages I have to assume they simply don't have the time to keep up with all of those.

    PS: I have always tried to explain the depth of the AI in ArmA to people. It's just when they stand there and suck up bullets is when it falls apart. But at closer range, it's really fantastic. And then as mentioned, at 50m it sometimes falls apart again but it's passable. Good luck inside buildings though, sigh.

  2. If anyone still uses this, it doesn't work anymore.. :( The place it was hosted got shut down and it has to go somewhere else.. it's a pain to find a place to support it because it can't be on normal hosters like GoDaddy.. it needs to do an outgoing ftp connection to BIS's beta depot, and most hosters don't allow that.

  3. http://506.jestservers.com/scripts/oktane/noblur/

    okay so I will put them here for now, but someone will have to tell me when it updates because I don't know how long the RSS feed will work until I get another host for that.. and the automatic noBlur relies on it to do it's magic hands-free updates. Plus it can't upload the build after it's done.

    ass hurts from trip, but pir8 wifi is go. :moto:

    I tried to make them auto update to this new host but I think the wifi is dropping so many packets that its screwing up the transfer. Even with my -19db rubber ducky. Plus I'm doing some nasty double NAT which old-school ftp protocol really hates.

    Let me know if there are other problems in addition to the aforementioned issues with auto updates. These were auto-generated, and they look fine in size and such. They just failed to upload.

  4. Oh. Seems silly to make a new EXE for that.. you'd think they'd just leave the game as it is and include the extra DLC when you install it.. hope people with reinforcements don't have any problems with my noblur..

    Anyone have Reinforcements that can test? It SHOULD work fine with the okt_noBlurOA, if everything is more or less the same.

    And guys if the mod is broke ever, and I'm not responding here, you can always email me my forum name at gmail.com

    All those broken noBlurs have now been re-uploaded, let me know, everything should be GTG again.

  5. hmm, I just happened to come here to see whats going on, for some reason I missed the email that told me people replied to this thread. Are you guys saying that the noBlur is broken now? Maybe they changed something or the script broke..


    Oh interesting.. it looks like they changed something in the patch, the way that it works. Now there are two exe's in there, ARMA2OA.EXE.#OA (yes that extension is correct) and ARMA2RFT.EXE.#RFT whatever the hell that is?!

    RFT some upcoming mod or something? :j:

    Anyways, my script uses 7zip to look into the patch exe and extract the bin.pbo and arma2oa.exe, I'll just update it to find this new filename arma2oa.exe.#oa

    7-Zip [64] 9.16  Copyright (c) 1999-2010 Igor Pavlov  2010-09-08
    Processing archive: .\beta_storage\ARMA2_OA_Build_83015\ARMA2_OA_Build_83015.exe
    [color="Red"]Extracting  .rsrc\0\RCDATA\ALL\ARMA2OA.EXE.#OA[/color]
    Extracting  .rsrc\0\RCDATA\ALL\EXPANSION\DTA\BIN.PBO
    Everything is Ok

    OK guys, everything should work.. it finds the exe from the patch again. (the beta exe file is taken out of the patch.exe and it's version number is analyzed, that was the only reason it was used)

    As usual sorry for the outage, there was nothing I could have done since BIS doesn't announce when they change something like this, lol. But I mean that it was broke for a long time, because I missed the notification or whatever. :o


  6. Lots of beta's done today.. some old backlog too. The task had stopped running because I changed my windows password.. doh. :o


    rssRunCmd - oktane 2010

    Tool for running action when new RSS item is detected in feed.

    Processing 82407 (Thu, 30 Jun 2011 12:27:05 -0500) OK

    Processing 82346 (Wed, 29 Jun 2011 09:44:26 -0500) OK

    Processing 82282 (Tue, 28 Jun 2011 07:09:47 -0500) OK

    Processing 82128 (Wed, 22 Jun 2011 11:00:57 -0500) OK

  7. I sympathize with you AVBIRD. I think I know exactly what you want. I call them usability improvements. Like a friends list in game.. so you play with a dude, you can click a star next to his name in the player list and then you can see what server he's on or send him a chat. Basic tools to keep the community connected.

    Right now there are friends playing arma.. but they aren't necessarily playing together. And maybe you'll meet someone that you'd like to play coop with again.. but the game doesn't help you remember who that was.

    AVBIRD, have you used Steam at all? I'd say it's a bit like that. More channels of communication between players other than the standard join server + chat way... because you can't always GET ON the server.. (addons, locked, full, etc)

    New players don't know where forums are or what TS server to join. The BASIC, i say again BASIC features are required in the game itself, out of the box.

    The integration is already there.. it was in ArmA1.. for the canned 360 version. (hit esc, see 'Friends' list)

    I'll go crawl back to my hole.. I stopped caring for a good reason, that is no matter how much you care, you can't get the community to agree on anything, nor get BIS to take notice anyways. I have some of the highest voted CIT tickets still open.. nothings really happened on them in years.

  8. Uploaded with ImageShack.us

    You really think that CoD and BF players are willing to play coop? :confused:

    Apparently you need to read the original post at the beginning of the thread or start your own rage thread about lack of PvP players. (which is an entirely different subject, yet has valid overlap into the coop one. There are shared problems for both.) Regardless, a mod will close it because there are already thousands of them.

    But shitting on everyone who disagrees with you is a great way to work things out. Eagerly awaiting Sfigokolarios' PvP military sim, made entirely by Sfigokolarios himself since he can't get along with anyone else. Tighten up those graphics on level 3...

    PS: I love PvP, and Coop.

  9. Hey guys,

    If you LIKE this idea, here's the CIT ticket you can VOTE UP on, it is already pretty popular... http://dev-heaven.net/issues/5520

    Supposedly, if it gets enough votes it will be looked at by the team seriously. :yay:

    Try to keep the discussion here though, the Issue Tracker isn't like a forum so much. :)

    Addon synchronization is the only way to bring together new players with the old players that like addons. (read here and here)

    Maybe the OP can put this in the first post if he wants, depends on if this thread has legs.


  10. That's not ARMA 2. Why are so many people of the opinion that ACE + ACRE are vanilla ARMA 2 features? You are saying ARMA 2 is difficult to set up when in actual fact it's specific mods you are having trouble with, thus giving a false impression of the game which, sadly, seems to have caught on like wildfire.

    Because addons are the heart of this series. If OFP did not have addons capability, I doubt there would have been such success with the series past 2005 or so. And BIS has pretty much made clear they are marketing a sim platform to their community, from outward appearances a normal game, but trying to keep both old and prospective camps happy. If addons were not important to BIS, I do not think they would fix compatibility issues when they break things such as islands, in the beta patches and such. (they fix these 3rd party issues they cause frequently)

    There has always been a huge issue with addons, and lack of standardization. The answer is clear to me, who had previously been helping people set up addons for 8+ years.. if BIS wishes to bring the old players together with the new players (that a new release brings), they must take action by standardizing an addon delivery method, or at least improving the GUI so that new people are not totally confounded by this very complicated process. It's irrelevant if you can figure it out fine and quickly Zipper, the fact is, most people cannot. Maybe you play vanilla, half the community doesn't. And we should not abandon those new people who have trouble, because they help the MP pool grow. Old players want addons, new players don't know about them. So something has to be done, or history will repeat itself yet again.

    And hopefully a large scale, MP community fragmenting clusterfuck like the A2/OA Standalone/CO MP debacle doesn't happen again.

  11. It is so hard to find COOP missions that players are playing in open public rooms beacuse of some of the reasons i stated above. COOP missions is what made OFP what it is. Warfare,dom in my view is killing the feel of OFP.

    JIP (Join in Progress) ruined everything, as far as people setting aside the time required for long coop matches, and being totally invested in it. Now'a days, people are in a huge hurry, if they aren't entertained pretty quick, they go somewhere else where shit is blowing up. But if they hadn't done that, maybe the game would be dead, who knows. I'm just adding this nugget of info as an old flashpoint player... when you played with people, they stuck around, because it took a long time to get in a match and there was a certain value to getting a slot on a good server like Karr's (RTS) or Radishville. You sat and waited, sometimes for more than an hour, for a new mission to start. There was no spectating, just a simple screen with the player list, mission timer, etc. It really weeded out the impatient people, griefers, things like that.

    But it was a different time. So more to the point, I do not think you will ever get anything close to flashpoint/res MP coop gameplay or even the behavior of those players (patient gentlemen for the most part) ever again.

    Besides that, without these gaming groups ('clans', swearword round here) that you disregard, those old flashpoint servers wouldn't have existed. What makes those servers exist in the first place is groups of guys getting together to shoot the shit, shoot guba's UAZ and each other, drink some beer, make new friends, etc. They donate to pay for the server. (unless one was an IT guy with a server under his desk at work.. :D)

    That aside, even hosting your own coop brought in people that were more patient and respectful that you would get today. You may sit in the mission start screen for 15-30 minutes before someone showed up. (remember, no JIP) But when you started it, chances are they would stay with you till the end or you died. (sometimes no respawn on the better coops) They knew not to dick around and shoot needlessly, shoot out the tires of cars, spam the guns in choppers, those are all signs of impatience and boredom, typical today.

    To play good coop in todays world, you need to find some guys to play with, simple as that. There is no successful public coop now, unless an admin is there constantly kicking dummies off and the mission can handle such setbacks as FF, satchels in the base, etc.

    Without investment and sacrifice on the part of the player, there will not be quality gameplay... pretty simple. (in time, patience, etc)

    Also, EVO/Domi is not the boogieman here.. Xeno made that map because people like it, it's what his fans wanted. It is more of a symbol of the modern times, or the new player base of the game. It is possible to play it old school, realistically.. it's very adaptable, quite fun that way. But most will use all the gimmicks to save time, get to the action, like I said, investment, sacrifice. (crawling 20km wounded on your belly, unheard of!? Just respawn stupid!) This disconnect (patient folks who take it a bit more serious so that it means a bit more vs the folks who like the action all the time) is what causes the problems. Nobody wants to flog themselves when other people are taking the easy, action packed route, it's frustrating. Everyone working together, playing in the same 'style' if you will, is what works.

    I'm an old fart, when I want to play a good no-respawn coop for 4 hours straight, I do so on the LAN, because I have given up on trying to find those quality players with that discipline is futile these days. :o There are groups of course, but they are kind of intimidating to a person with little gaming time.


    PS: Remember.. Operation Flashpoint and Resistance were pretty arcadey if you look at it from a sim prespective. What made it different was the AI, freedom of choice, MP with time investment, huge scale, community addons..

  12. Yeah this is pretty sad. It's been 3 years. It makes me lose a bit of faith in the CIT.. that or BIS has just too much pride for their shader effects, so they won't give any more work into it. On/Off is just not enough fine grain control for all the shaders. Nor is Off/Vlow/Low/Med/High, but they don't seem to agree. I could care less about half those options. I love the other effects, I just want to be able to disable the blur. Only because it makes me ill after a while, and when the FPS drops, it smears the screen so horribly.

    There was another thread where Suma said they were working on it, we said even the simplest provisions will help, such as hidden INI options. But that was over a year or two ago, no changes.

    Not having blur is also pretty important for making clear gameplay videos for youtube and such, imo. The compression does horrible things to a fullscreen blur.

  13. Feint: Thanks, fixed. (also I forgot to edit the other readme, there are actually two :) )

    PogMoThoin: Something went wrong with my RSS feed, I think something to do with the fact that they released a A2 beta.

    edit: Took quite a while, but fixed.. had to move backend web scripts to other host because of a hd failure. RSS and noBlur are back now. (noBlur autoscript depends on beta RSS feed)

  14. If you like what Jman is doing here, or want to expand your missions capabilities with SQL storage, please vote up this ticket for jaynus.

    We think alike! I had a similar test mission running, far more crude than that beaut, it's liberating having sql access isn't it.. so many things can be done. Makes you think of the game in completely different ways. But without support on the current jayarma2lib sqlite bugs as you mentioned (I reported those :D), I lost hope.. there are too many 'gotchas' that cause the jayarmalib hook to crash the server when using the current sqlite implementation. It's amazing what he's done so far, his auto update script is boss.. imagine the backend of that.. searching for new memory locations to patch when a new beta comes out, it's unreal. Hope you get it working!


    **There are some other implementations without jarmalib but they are very low bandwidth, and not ideal for a GSP like jayarma2lib is. It's already trusted and accepted.. there are just a couple issues holding it back for this kind of thing! We'd all use 3rd party exe + pipe but it's not allowed on GSPs, therefore very poor adoption..