If the Alpha is 2.5 months away from release, will there be time for good QA?


#1

I’m no expert on timetables for games or even experienced in Alphas/Betas in general, but I am a little concerned that holding the first Alpha stage so close to release will not allow for good implementation of the player feedback that is so critical to a game’s success. Does anyone else share my concerns?


#2

i also wonder that, why did they not put the alpha out when e3 was done? would have been a better time for QnAs


#3

Dont forget they are still doing a Beta for the xbox one in the fall


#4

It also seems really weird that the Alpha is PC only, and the Beta is Xbone only. Maybe they’re just playing with the Alpha/Beta titles while both tests serve the same purpose, but still. Weird. Time will tell.


#5

Well remember they have been playing this game for 3 years, and they are all gamers. They also have let the public play since PAX east and I am sure they have gathered valuable info and feedback since then. 2.5 months is actually a decent amount of time for feedback. I think people are used to these extremely extended fake betas, which often require payment to get it in and in the end are a slimy way to unofficially release a buggy game and avoid reviews.


#6

Basically this.

I think people are taking the term “alpha” too literally, we’re mostly playing a content restricted build that they have been working on for a while now since it’s the first two maps and the first tier hunters and Goliath.


#7

Yeah. Same with Destiny Alpha, it was a chunk of the final game - a really polished one at that. There’s different types of alphas, depends on the developer and the team behind it. Like, Steam Early Access titles can really just be throwing you version 0.01 blatantly at you and the future of its release could be 3-6 years later Stares at DayZ - The Forest is another good example, although the people behind The Forest are doing pretty great work for such a small team in a short amount of time since 0.01.

Yer either given the Very earliest scratch of the game and get to see its growth from zero - or are given a chunk of the game to play to help reinforce what problems that may have been overlooked by the staff :smiley: Every perception is its own reality. Every reality can find a potential variable in a realm of coding and constants.


#8

Yup, I get the feeling this will be pretty polished overall especially since the hardware range they were shooting for was pretty small I guess.


#9

I was going to mention DayZ. The DayZ alpha is VERY different from the Evolve alpha. There’s no specific definition of what an alpha has to be, so it can vary tremendously. The Evolve alpha test, from what I can gather, is more of a “let’s make sure this will work great on release!” type test.


#10

Aye, The Forest is doing quite well as is Space Engineers (currently one of my favorite titles despite being only in Alpha). Another bad example of early access you’re looking for is none other than The Stomping Land.


#11

I’d quote what @DamJess about the Alpha and how little one can expect from the Alpha, but that particular thread activity has boomed overnight; finding it will be a pain. To answer the original question though, it’s just not ready yet. Think of it as a vase that is being pieced together over time. TRS could give you the vase the moment the pieces are together but if the glue hasn’t set, it’s going to fall apart in your hands and be worth jack squat. That’s what would happen to the Alpha if it was done shortly after E3 - the devs might be able to play it, but they can’t give it to you without all kinds of issues porting it to Steam and making it playable. It just wouldn’t be playable from a player testing point of view. Instead you just have to look at it while the glue sets, so to speak.

Call me a cynic, but I don’t know if there’s going to be much room in Q&A in the beta if the rumours of it being three days long are true. At most it could just be stress testing, but then again if we look at Destiny, the public beta for that was 3 days and Bungie got loads. The way most Betas and Alphas have been handled this year are little more than demos or terms used by the PR dudes and dudettes to make it sound fancy and special. Being this close to release I can’t imagine the Alpha and Beta going on for longer than a fortnight, but as long as there’s enough there to give feedback on I really don’t care.

It’ll be here soon enough, but it has to be playable first.


#12

I know that they are trying to test the matchmaking system, in particular I’m going to guess it’ll be the preference system they test and how well it works. Again, that last part is only a guess, but it sounds like a safe bet to assume that’s something they really want to test


#13

In addition to preferences I imagine they want different system specs tested, initial server load testing, player feedback, as well as many other things. A well planned Alpha (or most likely beta in this case) can do wonders for a game.


#14

PC alpha makes sense just because it’ll be easier than putting it on the consoles.
Xbox beta makes sense because… Uhh… Money from Microsoft?.. :smiley:


#15

Alpha and Beta are used for different things pending on the game. Some use Alpha/Beta to have people find bugs. Others are to stress test servers/hardware and test different PC configurations.

From the sounds if it (And the videos we’ve seen of it on display) the game seems to have minor bugs. I’m thinking that the Alpha and Beta are more to test balance, configurations on computers and stress testing.

The advantage of playing your own game for over 3 years is that it helps squash out the majority of bugs. While I don’t doubt there will be some bugs in the Alpha/Beta, I think they’ll be far lower than what most people are used to when it comes to Alpha/Beta testing.

I’ve played my share of both types of betas, and while I didn’t get in this round, I’m sure that bug squashing isn’t the main priority compared to balance/server stress/load & PC configurations for this round.


#16

I don’t think PC configurations were a main priority this round, since they were looking specifically for high end, beefy PCs…which the majority of people don’t have. If they were testing PC configurations, PC requirements would have been way more lax.

Bug fixing is always a priority in alphas and betas. Testing for balance, server stress and PC configurations is usually done in betas. Although, I feel this alpha is really more of a closed beta, than a true alpha. But had they called it a “beta”, than Microsoft’s “exclusive” wouldn’t mean much.


#17

Agree with your second point about this being a closed beta.

I was also referencing with Alpha/Beta in general, not this specific round of invites as testing hardware specs for PCs. Yes, bugs are always important, but without being in the invite I don’t know if there are specific instructions regarding what they would like to test/have tested. My assumption is based on the lack of perceived bugs in playtesting among the public.


#18

A really well done explanation of this phenomenon.


#19

I like extra credits’s videos. They are usually well thought out.


#20

They are testing the Servers and the Matchmaking.

Other than that the game is feature complete.

Also, Extra Credits is my favorite youtube channel.