No offense, but the piloting in that video was horrible. This is Descent we are talking about here; if you aren't using slides/strafes pretty much at all times when you are moving or turning, you are very much doing it wrong.
These guys desperately need some direct experience flying with and watching people who actually know how to fly and fight in 6dof (with a good set of controls) or they are going to have issues with the development.
Word. This is my chief point of concern for the DU team these days. They love D1, they want to make D1, they know how to make a game, that's all goodness. But whenever they talk about 6dof tactics, I have to shake my head at the sheer cluelessness
. These guys are noobs, shouldn't the next game be designed by someone who understands
the current one?
But they know. And they are doing a lot of things to try to mitigate that risk.
They're playing the original game some. They aren't good at it -- they are decent by single player standards, horrible by heyday anarchy standards -- but they are trying to understand it, trying to get a feel for it. No, it isn't ground you can cover in the time they have, but they're at least trying, at least they understand that it's important for them personally to be the best pilots they can be. There will be some benefits from that.
They're listening to their community and agree with us about what's important. Targeting D1, making sure the ship flies right as a critical, first thing to worry about, making balanced weapons, making it a cerebral, intelligence-stressing game. They're on board with all of that. They aren't just saying it, it's what they want to do. That's very good. I'm concerned they're going to get the physics close enough from their
point of view, but not close enough from ours
. . . but we'll see. I suspect if we get truly upset about it, they'll listen.
But here's the real mitigation: their QA phase for ships and weapons happens pretty early in development, this coming August for a game that wants to release next March. Nine months of testing. They have a history of listening to the community, and the testers they've assembled? Consist of people willing to pay $500 on the kick starter for the privilege of seeing ships and weapons early and giving feedback. It's going to be 50 or 60 pilots hardcore enough to want to do that, and if the bulk of 'em aren't Real Pilots, I will be utterly shocked. And in fact, Lotharbot and I are already in that group, and so's Thorne and ccb and I don't know who else . . . but I do know that pledge tier is an awfully attractive one for a hardcore pilot. Plus, I think Lotharbot and I are going to have a few extra Proving Grounds accesses we can hand out, and we won't be recruiting clueless people.
And that's really what gives me hope for this thing: Descendent Studios may not consist of real pilots, but they have engineered their design process to heavily include them. They have SIGNED. UP. to have several dozen real pilots yell at them about their ships and weapons for nine months.
After Lotharbot and I spend a week grilling them in person.
Even Sol Contingency didn't sign up for that
It's gonna be pain and misery, but if you step back and blur your eyes -- this is a really, really good process. I have every expectation that it will produce a good game.
. . . but you nailed it when you said it hurts the presentation that they keep posting videos of themselves flying like n00bs. I feel the same way. They seriously need to get a real pilot to fly their demo reels. If nothing else, it would send the message that someone who knows how to fly is sold on the promise of this game.