... and why you won't hear me whining!
I hear a lot of people whining about JP/HMG rushes, this exploit and that, such and such being overpowered, and so and so being underpowered... and while I don't expect that everyone should be as sympathetic to the development of such a ground breaking and truely refreshing game as this than I am, I really do wish some people who offer no constructive
critiscism had even the slightest comprehension of what has gone into creating the magical world that is Natural Selection.
What Flayra and the gang have achieved so far, IMO, is absoloutely fantastic. Truely ground breaking, and uber-exciting
Being a professional programmer myself, I have the utmost appreciation and respect for the amount of (unpaid) work all these guys, especially Flayra, have put into the wonderful world we know as Natural Selection
. The atmosphere of the game, the creativitness of the classes, weapons, structures and abilities, the re-focusing of the gameplay on strategy and not kills, and the integration of RTS with FPS all add up to the essential ingredient for an enduring cult classic.
More than anything, the feeling when playing the Frontiersman that the aliens are scary, disgusting, parasitic creatures that you must work together to eliminate at all costs
, and a then total role reversal in the mindset when you're on the Kharra side, battling individually but united through the hive mind as all of that reverses and the marines become quite convincingly a menacing force, out to exterminate your very feable existence, when all you're trying to do is protect the survival of your brethren Kharra buddies
and eventually, your whole species.
I didn't use to play many computer games... none at all in the last few years really. The one that got me back into gaming was Battlefield 1942... well, the BF demo on Wake Island really in the days when the demo servers were packed and we couldnt get enough. The novelty wore off pretty quickly once I sunk my teeth into the ins-and-outs of NS. For the record, I didn't like NS at first. I thought there was way too much going on and I'd never get the hang of it. I did get the hang of it though, pretty quickly, and now I can't stop raving about this game. The few brief instances i've gone back to play BF, I felt lonely, without a real overall strategic purpose, and quite bored to be honest. I don't really feel as though I'm playing with anyone else, despite there being lots of individuals playing on the other end... I'm just little old me running around on a map full of chaos and very little order.
The focus on communication and teamwork in NS makes me really feel as though I'm an integral part of something, and that I know, for good or bad, that there are other people in this game with me, and my team is going to win or lose together.
I have never once whined about the in-balances of the game. I do whine about clan stacking, cause I fail to see the merrit or enjoyment in raping a bunch of n00bs and everyone quitting the server as a result, but that can hardly be blamed on the game itself.
Yes, there are major imbalances in 1.04, and it is more than likely there will be a major imbalance once a certain tactic is found over time in 1.1. Why does this not worry me as much as some? Because I appreciate that setting two completely different races against each other, while maintaining perfect and consistent balance is certainly not something that is easy to achieve, or even achievable at all. It doesn't stop me from having a whole lot of fun
It's obvious that Flayra has grand plans for NS over the long term, and I certainly hope he maintains the motivation to realise them in the face of all the ungratefuls who don't have enough appreciation for the super-difficult craft of game creation. Being a coder myself (although not of games, which is what commands the most respect among the coding types), I realise why a 1.05 path won't come out... I realise why things have to be dropped because implementing them is proving too time consuming... I realise that although something might seem like the simplest, most benign thing to fix, the workaround can be exceedingly and suprisingly complicated... I realise what a massive juggling act coordinating playtests to get information that equates to real, unbiased feedback and translating that into the next release can be.
What is the point of this post? More than anything to thank Flayra and the rest of the dev team for their continued hard work and persistance, but also to stress to other players that their enjoyment of NS should be in the journey of it's development and continued evolution. I am extremely eager to play NS v1.1, but I'm having just as much fun anticipating it... I just wish Flayra was under less pressure to get the public 1.1 release out... please take your time mate!
. Just take the time you need to make it what you want 1.1 to be. People will come back to try it out, but a lot of hopes will be riding on 1.1 from people with less passion for the long term plan than some of us have.... whatever the fate is in the end, it will be their loss as far as I see.
So... thankyou Flayra for concieving this wonderful concept and new style of gameplay, and thankyou for dedicating your time to making so many people that much happier that they are able to indulge themselves in the world you've pieced together. Also a big thankyou to everyone that helps Flayra realise his visions with models, sounds, maps and everything else we take for granted!
You all deserve to be very chuffed!
Keep up the awesome work!