Suggestion: Dev Newsletter

Hello all. As I understand from reading the survey 3 highlights, 74% of voters believed the devs should dedicate more time to developing the game and 26% thought they should spend more time reporting progress. I suppose this post is in support of the 26%, but with good reason. :wink:

Frequently, the few snippets of updates and information we hear about are general and include things such as…

:lester: this:

:lester: this:

:lester: and this:

to name but a few. While it’s nice to know that there is a list, I (and I’m sure others) would REALLY like to know what’s on it or what the general “game plan” is.

Reasons for revealing little information or being vague on purpose in these forum posts include…

:lester: this: [quote=“james, post:6, topic:1678”]
I really don’t want to spoil any surprises.

or saying that things aren’t quite ready to be announced yet or that certain features aren’t ready to be made public. Which I totally respect and acknowledge. I get that certain features should be a big shock or that things should be withheld until prototypes are designed, meetings are held, etc. This post is merely a request for more structured updates.

Along the lines of requesting more updates, one user even made accusations of neglecting the news section on the main website, to which Ben said this:

What I’m asking for is not a complete and detailed plan of THE roadmap, but rather a sort of general informational update.

In other words, I would suggest some sort of weekly, biweekly, or even monthly newsletter or other means of updating the community that goes beyond currently available or recent updates like those on the news section of the website that allows for backers to get a glimpse of what is upcoming with maybe even some rough estimates as to when. Speaking for myself, I feel as though the “drought” in updates may be signaling a big update coming. And while I appreciate seeing designs in the devlog to satiate my excitement for this big reveal, even a little snippet of information about what’s actually on the to-do list or in the pipeline would be MUCH appreciated. :relaxed:

Included below is an example of what this newsletter could look like or include. Using and updating a template like the one below wouldn’t draw too much time or resources away from current projects. Also, to prevent any big reveals, information could be kept general, as can be seen in the example.

Others may say that this is too much for a game in early development stages, but after a few discussions trying to get friends to back the game with me, it’s evident that they, at least, need something more to even back the game (in other words they’re planning on joining for release and considering backing but need more information). I think a brief outline of which of the currently funded modules will be available and when they will be available would not only show that progress IS being made behinds the scenes but would show backers that their funding is going to good use. :thumbsup:

Again, I want to stress that I understand that the current “lack” of communication is likely due to the full dedication of the development team towards designing, implementing, tweaking, etc. And I am so very proud to back a team this dedicated to them product and their customers. But some sort of commitment to an informational update every x number of days or weeks would be awesome, even with a minimal amount of effort or details involved.

Pre-posting edit: I’ve just seen a post by acarx which sort of mirrors the sentiments above. My expectations are much lower than his and this post should not be read in the tone of “Where is my content, I want it now!” but rather “Give a dog a bone, pleaaaase ;).” Any information on the state of the game would be fantastic to have.

Note: The below “newsletter” was made in all of ten minutes, so I’m sure someone on your team could do a better job making a template should you even decide to pursue this path and not do something different like forum posts, emails, updating the news section, etc. The content is meant to include weak suggestions of what you could include. Feedback on the ideas presented in those post by devs and community members is most welcome, but I openly acknowledge my very basic skills that are fully lacking of the full design power adobe products offer and so comments or critiques on the design of the “newsletter” would be very out of place.


Very good idea! I’d really love to see this happen :slight_smile: @ben @james would that be possible? Or would this be too time consuming? :lester:

Papyrus, though.


:wink: I am by no means a designer. Just trying to help as best I can.

1 Like

while i would like to see this to a certain degree, i also think it might force them to make deadlines that they might not always be able to keep. i know its a bit slow in developement, and i would also like info. but the concept art they are posting atm is enough for me.

as i have mentioned before, for better or worse the team does alot of polish on all features before they put them out, which makes it take waaay longer, while most early access games who have ‘‘constant progress’’ just creates game breaking bugs in almost every patch.

1 Like

Restaurant hosts and hostesses will often tell customers that seating will be available within a longer period of time than what the actual guess should be. This makes customers happier when they are seated more quickly than was expected. Adopting this sort of method would be pretty easy. Similarly, saying “we aim to release x in y time” or something of those sorts would release any commitment to set dates. Or even better, remove any mentioning of time at all if that’s what it takes. I’ll take any increase of information that I can.

I absolutely appreciate this fact, as mentioned in the post. I would just like some info along the lines of “We’re working on x, y, and z” rather than “We have a list”. Repeating “we have a list” may even take more time and resources than a quick blurb about what’s going on at the studios in a given month.

Again, not really demanding a new game update every week/month, but rather an informational update. This could be a newsletter like the one above or even something like a quick 2 minute post on these forums summarizing what’s happening with the team or what they’re thinking about, etc.

I cannot stress enough how much I appreciate the efforts Ben, James, and the others put into maintaining relations with the community on these forums and the detail and information their posts already contain. I’m merely asking for a blurb every now and then to keep us updated beyond what is presently available.

Then i would have to agree, progress reports are good, however you also mentioned that 3/4th of the players would rather have them working on the game than do progress reports, isnt it better to appeal to the masses? while i kinda understand it and kinda want information, i also think its an amazing feeling to suddenly log in and see a new major feature getting into the game that wasnt announced (such as new tool, weapon and creatures)

I guess I interpreted that as people wanting devs to spend time working on the game rather than making detailed podcasts or youtube videos, both of which could take any number of hours. The methods I’ve suggested could (and should) be kept brief and general. And not everything should (or would) be given to us in terms of updates, I’m sure. I believe 100% that there is a way to keep the community generally updated while not revealing too much or taking too many resources (including time) to do so.

I had made a request for this in another thread. I would really love it if there was a new letter especially for the weekly release notes.

so…a devblog? :smile:

would you prefer comic sans?


Yeah, actually, I’d be fine with that :blush: , as long as it included more information about works in progress and any upcoming works than the current dev logs/posts so we can get a sense of the real progress happening behind the scenes. My real desire for this feature is to get a realistic sense of the game as it is being developed and not just basing any ideas and notions based on the current released state of the game.

Interesting suggestion for how we do updates :chester:

If we did do something like this, it would be on the dev log, that’s out news outlet. We don’t want to fragment that across different places.


Something i just remembered was elder scrolls online when they were in developement, they would make a ‘‘question of the week’’ every week, at first people were kinda ‘‘what, but you are supposed to asnwer them’’ but as time went along more and more people started waiting for them each week, the point was letting different developers ask questions in their field or what they wanted.

not saying that it is something you guys have to do, but i think connection between devs and players are one of the most important things in this early stage :smile:

1 Like

I’d love to do more of this stuff, but with the team configuration as it is right now it would eat into our development time too much. I think we do a pretty good job of interacting with the community here – we will try to do more video content and share here though.

Also, I’m sure the dev team aren’t producing those videos, they probably have a team for it. We’re still a tiny team!


Yeah, I don’t think I quite had professionally produced videos in mind. Just a shout out on the forums about working on, for example, the damage thing you were talking about in another post and the time duration of a month, is lovely information to have. More updates about what’s being worked on behind the scenes in even as generic and quick a manner as this would be lovely :smiley: :chester: :lester: :doug:

1 Like