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LOTROExtreme 0.9 Beta Test : LOTROExtreme - Page 12

Posted: July 16th, 2007, 7:15 am
 
wayward
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I'm not sure how it's clutter when it's specific to this thread topic -- release dates.

The thing that has people (including me) frustrated is pretty simple, and it's really at the core of any software development effort -- expectations management.

Namely, it's important to set expectations appropriately and then to meet them. When that doesn't happen, customers tend to get irate.

If the expectation is clearly set that "our target date is X and our target functionality is Y so please stay my/our backs until then" as well as some occasional interim updates on progress, breakthroughs, challenges, roadblocks, potential and actual delays -- then you'll get a lot more understanding from your users and customers.

If people are generally in the dark about what's coming and when, and told "this is programming so you can't reliably predict dates" then they tend to set their own expectations and you're guaranteed to negatively surprise some people who maybe are too aggressive in their presumed timing and/or function.

If people are led to believe that this is currently a working program for which they're paying money, and then find out that it doesn't work, it's understandable that they'd be upset when they find that out.

My humble suggestions to improving the communication and quieting the discontent are:

1) create a sticky thread for updates on the 1.0 release, including anticipated timing and the things i mentioned above, to which only the people responsible for the release can post.

2) create a sticky thread with very simple, step-by-step instructions on how to get the program working, with screenshots and/or URLs of exactly what to go download and install and from where. Currently it's a bit of a circle jerk of "go read this other thread" which links to a page that links to a page that links to a page that doesn't look like LotroExtreme any more and is confusing.

3) create a sticky thread FAQ that explains very clearly what LotroExtreme is, what "XUnleashed" is, what "tault" is, what "Exhume" is, how they're interrelated, etc. that confused me at first. Also tell people what they're buying (access to a community site, which for now comes with this piece of preview software, but which may carry a separate charge in the future, etc.)

4) stop taking money from people for the software at times (like now) where you don't actually have a working product to sell. instead, you should probably be taking email addresses for contacting people once a working version is released. to do otherwise is to guarantee yourself unhappy customers and hinder future sales (i'm going to guess that word-of-mouth is your most effective marketing channel, and that you aren't creating raving fans right now by taking money without delivering a working product).

If this is a spare-time project for wyvernx who has a full-time job elsewhere and updates this when he can, etc -- that would be a good thing to let people know upfront, because otherwise they'll buy expecting something that they're not going to get (i.e. a clearly documented product with a clear release schedule and roadmap).

Last time I hinted at a few of these things on the boards here I was told "pipe down script kiddy this is software development and you can't predict it." I'll now chime in and let you know I've got 11 years of experience in the software business, working on large commercial software products, selling them, and now work as an investor in early-stage software businesses that usually involve very complex engineering efforts with anywhere between 5 and 50 developers working full-time. I know how this works (or is supposed to work) when it's a well-run business, so I figured I'd offer a few humble suggestions.

But they all boil down to: properly set and manage user/customer expectations and everything generally works out pretty well.


Posted: July 16th, 2007, 7:55 am
 
Tault_mississippi

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Bah - 11 years of experiance, you are still a script kiddy! Pipe Down!

OK - with 11 years of experiance, maybe we will upgrade your title to something more suitable - I just can't think of anything appropriate at the moment. :-)

Wyvern "volunteers" his time - he isn't on the paid staff as far as I know - but I've only been here about three years and don't know everything yet.


Posted: July 16th, 2007, 8:03 am
 
jazzee
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Whether wyvern "Volunteers" or otherwise means nothing to the paying masses that read this:

Quote:
Q: How much is it?

A: LOTROExtreme is going to be only 24.95 per year. Keep in mind with updates that have to happen multiple times a day, and customer support this is more than worth it. Also you are not just getting a hunting bot, but a crafting bot, a radar and whatever people can think up with the program down the road.


Posted: July 16th, 2007, 9:08 am
 
Tault_mississippi

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Yep - your obviously right and I am obviously wrong.


Posted: July 16th, 2007, 10:21 am
 
dildog
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I believe that the following is what was referred to but i may be incorrect

"Access to MMORPG Guides and Secrets ($24.95)
One Full Year to TaultUnleashed.com with access to the following: Tault: Most active Exploit, Guide, Macro, Bot, and Program Forum on the net. Xunleashed: In Game Botting, Radars, Macroing, and More!!! Exhume: Out of Game Botting, Radars, Macroing, and More!!!"


jazzee wrote:
Whether wyvern "Volunteers" or otherwise means nothing to the paying masses that read this:

Quote:
Q: How much is it?

A: LOTROExtreme is going to be only 24.95 per year. Keep in mind with updates that have to happen multiple times a day, and customer support this is more than worth it. Also you are not just getting a hunting bot, but a crafting bot, a radar and whatever people can think up with the program down the road.


Posted: July 16th, 2007, 11:16 am
 
Tault_mississippi

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Yep - based on my understanding, you are correct DILDOG. You typically "purchase" access to Tault boards (Exploit, Guide, Macro, Bot, and Program Forum), XUnleashed, and Exhume. Which, mind you, are all currently working and have no issues.

We, as a community, develop scripts/bots/etc. which run on top of XUnleashed or Exhume. Wyvern is the foremost script/bot/etc. developer in our community and leads the contribution of the highest quality scripts across numerous game categories. Folks typically want access to Wyverns work, but currently have to purchase the underlying engine access (Boards, Xunleashed, Exhume) in order to get it.

However, most people don't grasp the fact that they are purchasing access to Boards, Xunleashed, and Exhume - because that is too low level for their tastes. They aren't looking for an engine, they are looking for a fully developed and working "bot". So then, they get frustrated because they "believe" that they purchased the actual bots/scripts that the community is contributing - rather than understanding that they actually purchased the engines and that all the bots/etc. they are actually using come from community contribution.

Take WAYWARDS post for example. He implies that people believe that they purchased LOTROExtreme - probably somewhat due to the fact that the LOTRO FAQ contains the statement JAZZEE quoted. There is plenty of room in that FAQ answer for people to interpret it exactly as JAZZEE did - particularly as a lot of new people are coming into this thread specifically because they want access to LOTROExtreme and it seems sensible to them that if that is what they are joining for, that must be what they were buying. I agree that seems confusing to newbie's and could probably be better articulated - but I'm just a voluntary contributor here myself, so someone like tault_admin will have to address that.

Those of us who have been here a while perceive that many "new people" to the forums have this perspective that they "purchased" the work we are contributing. While we are working full time jobs, raising our children, honoring our wives, and altogether living a full life that happens to include a passion for automating games.

So then, when we see one of our number come under attack (in this case Wyvern), we get somewhat defensive. We should probably exercise greater patience and grace, and spend more time spelling out the details ... but then, we are human as well and get frustrated. We do see what you are saying, and can appreciate the confusion and frustration.

TAULT_ADMIN has consistently proven to be a fair and equitable individual (in my estimation) - if you feel like you have been misled, cheated, or otherwise put upon - I encourage you to send him a private message and I'd bet good money he will work it out with you.

WYVERN works his arse off for our community, of his own volition. If you are upset that he hasn't managed your expectations properly with regards to this release, I ask you to exercise some grace and patience. Walk a mile in his shoes - then come back and with criticism.

In the meantime, JAZZEE - why don't you go ahead and post your C++ source? I'd be interested in seeing your work, x000013 has also expressed interest as well.


Posted: July 16th, 2007, 3:15 pm
 
Tault_admin

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My mistake on what i said i mean offsets where being changed, but it wasnt this game i meant. I was talking about other games. Keep in mind because of people trying to steal our works its limits the amounts of extra help we can hire. When that happens we only have to many people. Other games such as eq2, ffxi, vsoh, ect have updates that need to be fixed. The structs where for eq2 i was talking about sorry about that.

As for security yea its a problem we have to deal with now im sorry but thats that. We arent going to release something that can be easily stolen as we found out another site was doing....

As for lotroextreme its something i dont give dates for. I say what i see happening at times from the programmers but crap happens and alas i cant fix it when it does. (read above again).

As for access this stuff is wyvernxs that he has we have no control over him you pay for access to xunleashed and exhume. As for being a master programmers with exhume you can create your own service for lotro, but instead wyernx is investing himself.

As for the complaint of selling something that we dont have. We have lots of things that go down from time to time from updates we cant spend our time editing each page when that happens. Hence we allow a secret. The ability to read some forums for free and post. This section for example is 100% free to view for the public. You can read this without being a premium members. Even better people can always ask questions. Its something we try to do. Also you can go check out our lotro section to see lots of other things that arent lotroextreme. This is only one part of your package.

Yes i know you might reply saying this is your main reason for joining which then im sorry. We try to do our best but the fact is we have to have things that we can release that are safe for all, i personally do not want to see wyv release this item then see it stolen right away from others and they to claim it as thier own.


Posted: July 16th, 2007, 3:27 pm
 
wayward
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I understand your point, mississippi, that we're buying a lot more than just access to the LOTROExtreme client. however, that's the only reason that I personally paid for access and all that I want.

the hints/cheats/tips section would be interesting if it actually had useful info in it, but it seems to be newbie guides and things that are either obvious or already patched. partly that's Turbine's "fault" as they seem to be really good at keeping on top of fixing their bugs (darn those high-quality products and developers!)

I also understand that I am only getting access to an engine, and that's why I've been asking about COM wrappers...

about 18 months ago I made myself a fully-automated EQ2 bot, which had some interesting features, such as:

. ability to auto-craft things at highest quality
. built-in database of recipes and components
. ability to do auction house (or whatever htye call it) transactions, do risk arbitrage on mispriced items, buy components for crafting, etc...
. navigate the world (or at least the parts I did a database for) from place to place

this all added up to a bot that would run around getting low-priced components (or harvesting them if necessary), buy fuel etc. and automatically craft whatever finished products were missing in the markets (in my case carpentry/furniture), sell them on the market, and repeat as they were purchased (subject to certain working capital restrictions).

i did all this over the course of a week or two using a really crappy toolset (ACTool) which had zero access to in-memory variables etc... I did it all through pixel scraping/reading... and it actually worked quite well.

anyway I was excited to see LOTROExtreme as a platform engine for doing something similar for LOTRO, since it would save me a lot of upfront work and if it hooks into COM, will allow me to use more powerful scripting environments (in my case VB6 which is old but I have it and remember most of the syntax from ~10 years ago).

anyway, I hope my comments are seen as constructive. I'm not wholly satisfied, but I'm hopeful that I can contribute something interesting here once the engine is built. I probabyl don't have the time to do all the pieces above, but if others share their work we can probably cobble together some very interesting and useful stuff.


Posted: July 16th, 2007, 3:40 pm
 
Tault_admin

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I understand where people are coming from dont worry. Haha i would much rather not have people PM me asking me is it done or people complaining that its not done yet haha. Just we had it ready it was going great then we found an exploit another site was taking which forced wyv to do some recoding. That is the problem and there is no way to get around it :(.


Posted: July 16th, 2007, 9:29 pm
 
shiftyy
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dildog wrote:
I believe that the following is what was referred to but i may be incorrect

"Access to MMORPG Guides and Secrets ($24.95)
One Full Year to TaultUnleashed.com with access to the following: Tault: Most active Exploit, Guide, Macro, Bot, and Program Forum on the net. Xunleashed: In Game Botting, Radars, Macroing, and More!!! Exhume: Out of Game Botting, Radars, Macroing, and More!!!"


jazzee wrote:
Whether wyvern "Volunteers" or otherwise means nothing to the paying masses that read this:

Quote:
Q: How much is it?

A: LOTROExtreme is going to be only 24.95 per year. Keep in mind with updates that have to happen multiple times a day, and customer support this is more than worth it. Also you are not just getting a hunting bot, but a crafting bot, a radar and whatever people can think up with the program down the road.


dildog lose the attitude please, show some respect for what wyvernx does :!:

If you think you can get a better deal somewhere else, then cya dont let the door hit u on the way out.

I'm sure you wont find a site that's 100% to date when you want them to be.


Posted: July 21st, 2007, 9:01 pm
 
dididothat
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"we found out another site was doing...."

What site is/was this?


Posted: July 22nd, 2007, 5:02 am
 
icetech

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And do they have it working? :)


Posted: July 22nd, 2007, 9:51 pm
 
dildog
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Quote:
dildog lose the attitude please, show some respect for what wyvernx does :!:

If you think you can get a better deal somewhere else, then cya dont let the door hit u on the way out.

I'm sure you wont find a site that's 100% to date when you want them to be.


What the hell are you talking about? lmfao.. I believe.. that my statement appeared as an attitude when it in fact was not meant as one. I only was trying to add to jazee's statement to clear confusion and unintentionally guess i made it too complicated for you to see the point. I have proudly been here for over 2 years and have yet to complain. So as for you my friend perhaps you should not be so quick to snap ur load.


Posted: July 23rd, 2007, 4:04 am
 
neoconn
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FFS, just release the damn thing already! Been hearing about this "phantom," next Friday release forever. Getting sick and tired of it. I know Wyvernx is working hard and we all appreciate it. But please release it already!


Posted: July 23rd, 2007, 4:14 am
 
Tault_mississippi

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You, neoconn, have such a wonder way with words! I only wish my own offspring could develop such a fine since of articulation and expression.


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