One player's perspective - Revisited

Case number:699969-997091
Topic:General
Opened by:auntdeen
Status:Open
Type:Question
Opened on:Saturday, February 22, 2014 - 04:31
Last modified:Sunday, March 2, 2014 - 04:08

Almost two weeks ago, I posted a feedback about my personal perspective on the status of the game.

Since that time, there has been only one update - the Rebuild one that works for "normal" puzzles, but fails for mutate puzzles (helices in those still need to be formed by tweaking). There have been allusions by the devs in a couple of feedbacks that maybe you know what the problem is about wiggle, then a statement that perhaps you will pull high wiggle entirely. Neither of those have been much explained.

Other than that, the Game issues and Community issues that I listed in my other feedback remain unchanged. That thing about proteins cementing prematurely? That's not just using high wiggle from my experience and testing. There is something else going on, which may be why LWS works again - even in high wiggle.

While rebuilding scripts will work again, banding scripts are still not functioning well - the compressors and GAB script types. The scripts we have always depended upon to move sections around to find a better position simply don't have the ability to find that anymore. This could be related to the premature cementing.

Devs are still trying to fix all the bugs… players are still trying to find their way around this alien client…

"Fun" seems to many to be but a memory...

Some few players are content, if not happy, to have a huge new challenge. Many players aren't, and many players are running fewer clients for this reason, and because the game seems to be overheating more than it used to - and crashing often for many.

One alarming trend is that the information flow between the devs & the players is decreasing and becoming moreso strained… very few feedbacks have been filed this week. The devs have responded to only a handful, and haven't come into chat for any questions. One dev was in veteran chat this evening for a very limited time, there just wasn't enough time to answer his question.

This situation really can't continue. There is no sense in having a "better" client for CASP if the relationship between the devs & the players degrades any farther, and the lack of enjoyment causes good players to leave and newcomers to be overwhelmed. It's way past time for the devs to devote a COUPLE of hours to the players in the form of a dev chat that brings out all the issues, and allows all of us as a full (devs & players) community to come to a reasonable and realistic conclusion about our gaming client.

Just IMHO.

(Sat, 02/22/2014 - 04:31  |  13 comments)


MurloW's picture
User offline. Last seen 18 weeks 5 days ago. Offline
Joined: 11/21/2012

All work and no play makes MurloW care less about sciencey goals every day.

Joined: 04/11/2013

It seems as if things are running better. There is still a lot of room for improvement. The laptop that could run 3 threads cannot handle even one for too long. It can still do everything else as before so it must be related to the game.
The extra challenge is to be liked by some of us who have something with a bit more cpu, but now the day job has caught up with me and devoting any real attention to the game is out of the question.
This is the type of situation where easier play would be most welcome.
I would like to see a situation where great players from the past come back and add to our experience and value to science. Is that even possible?

Joined: 04/15/2012
Groups: Beta Folders

"There is something else going on, which may be why LWS works again - even in high wiggle."
Yeah, that seems to be the ONLY way to get the protein stable... And you have to continuously try many different lengths (sometimes 1, sometimes 2 or 3, sometimes the whole chain, sometimes it's just too stubborn). And honestly, high wiggle should not leave a -500 score on a segment. For anything other than idealize, it would make the protein explode. The devs have said that that's because of extra freedom in idealization, but it doesn't resolve on low wiggle, and that loss is WAY too big to be ignored.

"The scripts we have always depended upon to move sections around to find a better position simply don't have the ability to find that anymore."
As devs have said, sometimes change is necessary. They do it with Rosetta. We may have to adjust too-and resort to actual designing. Granted, it isn't ideal for those who have little time (like myself), but some things really can't be helped. Whether this is one or not is to be seen.

"This situation really can't continue. There is no sense in having a "better" client for CASP if the relationship between the devs & the players degrades any farther, and the lack of enjoyment causes good players to leave and newcomers to be overwhelmed. It's way past time for the devs to devote a COUPLE of hours to the players in the form of a dev chat that brings out all the issues, and allows all of us as a full (devs & players) community to come to a reasonable and realistic conclusion about our gaming client."
Eterna has a bi-weekly dev chat. They're accepting players to help them build. They're acceptive of new ideas. Heck, we've come up with a whole new platform and they're letting us put it on their site and over the summer we had (younger) devs casually chatting with us for hours on end. You say that you can't have players developing because they could introduce bad changes, cheat, etc.? Don't let them touch (or see) the score function, put strict policies in place, and filter the changes we make (editing as needed). For a project like this, there isn't a whole lot of using the crowd as much as you would be able to.

Keep your mind open. Communicate. Source with restrictions. Look at Lego. I would highly recommend a book I just read (http://www.amazon.com/Brick-Rewrote-Innovation-Conquered-Industry/dp/030795160X). It talks about how Lego started, tried to innovate and almost went bankrupt from doing it the wrong way, then came out stronger than ever. In fact, a couple chapters are devoted to crowdsourcing. They're a commercial business, and it turned out tremendously well utilizing it, and it even explains how they were able to exhibit control, freedom, and innovation at the same time-both within the company and without.

Sorry if I got a little wordy, but I really think you should take this into serious consideration. You need to be open. You're afraid of what could happen, and rightly so. Combine them to a place where you're open, but with restrictions.

spmm's picture
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Joined: 08/05/2010
Groups: Void Crushers

I am a bit surprised by these posts, as far as I can see the devs/scientists including beta_helix have responded very quickly to many posts regarding NC; more importantly they have listened and fixed NC problems reported by players quite quickly.

Things were fixed because there were clear and specific posts about what was wrong. For example Susume's great post about rebuild allowed them to test, isolate and fix.

Once rebuild was fixed (although imo still needs work, that's nothing new :P)I found that the NC game offered a richer game play experience.

So I am entirely unaware of any conflict or any inability to continue playing. Having a 'chat' is not really useful unless we have a list of things which are agreed to be actually wrong or unplayable, not just different, and a way to explain them so that they can be tested and fixed. We also need to make it clear if we are talking about effects in design puzzles or 'normal' puzzles.

Also looking at the scores on the last few NC puzzles the same people seem to be in roughly the same places on the leader boards and the numbers of people in in-game chat are around the same.

I feel that there is a great deal of sense in having a better client for CASP, (the real game) players did really well on a few puzzles last time, as you can see from the WeFold paper, and the competition will be even harder for CASP 11, no point in wasting time and resources using old models.

I also don't see any value in conflating NC 'issues' with wanting to have foldit made open source. foldit led the way initially and eteRNA followed, with a different game and a different model. Lots of players, myself included, have zero desire to rewrite foldit code and really just enjoy playing. I am of course very grateful to the talented players who do write scripts and share them with everyone. It may also be useful to remember that eteRNA is two, not three dimensional and has a very simple set of tools.

Joined: 04/15/2012
Groups: Beta Folders

Very good points, I forget these things, though I shouldn't have.

I would like to point out though, that just because you don't care to help in improving the software, that doesn't mean others aren't more than willing and able to help improve it. The potential is really astounding.

And actually they are connected, as they both have to do with connections between payers and devs. Granted, the issues are probably a bit overinflated, but things can always improve in this area.

spmm's picture
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Joined: 08/05/2010
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Adb Not sure how you got to: ' because you don't care to help in improving the software' from my statement that I have no desire to personally rewrite foldit code? They are not mutually exclusive.
You have drawn an erroneous conclusion.

Joined: 04/15/2012
Groups: Beta Folders

I meant by actually coding the software, sorry I wasn't so explicit. (Am I understanding correctly in that?)

Joined: 06/24/2008
Groups: Void Crushers

I just do not see the crisis.
NC is different.
OK, I still do not see the crisis.

I also do not see a big change in the communication between devs and players; I also do not see a change in the amount of complaining. I heard the same complaints before NC.

Though it would be nice to have Kate back; she was a great addition; and she will be very hard to replace.

frood66's picture
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Joined: 09/20/2011
Groups: Marvin's bunch

Mike - could u possibly let me know where u get your rose tinted glasses from?

I could make a killing here at the moment :)

Joined: 09/21/2011
Groups: Void Crushers

I do agree with Mike. The NC is an opportunity to learn new strategies. Has still some flaws but is playable and forces me and other to rethink their game which in my opinion is a good thing.

Joined: 09/21/2011

i'm new to NC. I'm not sure I hate it. In fact there are some things i like. everything feels much more plyable to me. rebuild seems a bit drunk, but it hasn't affected my hand rebuilds yet. I like local wiggle too. It settles quickly without that sort of tension in it that caused it to rock around while it tried to settle on the score. The tricky part is the way proteins settle more deeply into local minimas, not sure how i should feel about that yet.

Joined: 04/15/2012
Groups: Beta Folders

I think the issue on the communications side isn't really a change-more of the fact that things are more difficult, but communication seems to be staying similar, if slightly improved, plus the bumps in the road. Things aren't really that bad, in honesty, just aggravated to a point where it seems they are. Though this would be a good time for new design tools as it seems that the update has paved a way for more work in that regard to be done... We just currently don't have enough (or could at least use better) tools to do that.

Joined: 08/24/2011

one ex-player's perspective:

i ragequit a year ago. simply put, i was bored by the amateurism in foldit. "some" decisions are just plain stupid:
"well, how's that new feature doin'?
_ it's broken beyond repair…
_ fine! push it from devprev to main then!"
rinse and repeat for every new feature.

i don't see the point of stating the obvious but here goes : main should *always* be rockstable.

i haven't played for a year. i downloaded the last linux build and could never play for more than hour (and often less) without the game crashing. talk about user experience. the funny thing here is that the linux build uses the same binary for devprev and main. how's that supposed to mean anything?

i don't have any statistics about this, but my guess is that most of the veterans are running at least one devprev client on a regular basis. i can run only one client but it was always a devprev one. i like that utopian possibility of switching to main just to get pure fun, but the only thing one can get is a *slightly* less bugged version…

i know the game can't be perfect for everyone, eg. i have an old, cheap gpu, and can't play 851 at all. this is not your fault, i can't blame you. but i can blame you for pushing well-known bugs to main. this is pure nonsense. stop that feature frenzy. who cares if the game is up-to-date if nobody's playin'? if you're to prove that players can do better than machines, why taking the risk of losing players because of a new "machine"? stop saying we're useless without the feature X. the only thing that we can give to science through foldit is time and brains, and well… so far, everything you did just made me feel that you look down on what i'm trying to give.

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