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  • Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

    I'm moving a few posts that went off topic so that the discussion may continue here.
    |TG-189th| Unkl
    ArmA 3 Game Officer
    Dean of Tactical Gamer University
    189th Infantry Brigade Member
    SUBMIT A RIBBON NOMINATION OR CONTACT AN ARMA ADMIN
    "We quickly advance in the opposite direction and take cover in a house on the SW side of town." - BadStache

  • #2
    Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

    Ok. So mods, we've been pretty shy on them. Lately the in-game launcher has really gotten some more great content available for everyone that has the game but the list is not exhaustive. But the fact that the new launcher works quite well, is easy to run and conflicts are less likely has some thinking the era of the modded server should be back.

    You're admin team is convinced otherwise still at this point. I don't want to be very specific about individual mods because in the greater sense of the internets I really have no interest in looking like a basher or any particular mod. I do like the variety and changes that almost all mods bring to the table. It's the effect on community building and admin back room work where mods can still have unintended consequences.

    As a point of reference, when we ran our own custom repository for our mods, it was required that I
    1. maintain that repository by downloading and testing each update,
    2. custom signing each file for that update and pushing it to the repository,
    3. then running the update on each instance server side and copying the keys and delete the old keys,
    4. then there was the forum post with details and specifics because not everyone could access the custom repo.
    5. Then after that the admin team (and with many thanks! many players) used to spend countless hours of game time helping with update glitches and configs.



    Now the above paragraph only gives you the picture of one update. Here is the cascading scenario you get with mod updates.
    1. A mod used by almost all mods updates.
    2. Mod B & C, update 2 days later.
    3. Mod D & E don't update until a week.
    4. The main branch of the game updates.
    5. A mod used by almost all mods updates.
    6. Mod B & C, update 2 days later.
    7. Mod D & E don't update until a week.
    8. Teamspeak updates and breaks mod F. Provide tech support to roll back TS. This happens each day until Mod F updates.
    9. Mod F updates 1 week later.
    10. ect...


    Now remember that at each one of these stages above the first list had to be gone through. No wonder I hardly made it into game :row__630:

    But these things are besides another even more important point....

    Not having a vibrant vanilla playerbase that shows new ArmA players what our style of teamwork with a chain of command, without an armchair power tripping tyrant but a mature and helpful leader, and players that show what following a leader looks like...this kind of community is what keeps our new players coming to us. Without this life blood of "I just bought Arma and shouldn't be in multiplayer yet cuz I'm scared of these keybinds" we would be losing great players to simpler games. Sometimes you just forget that Arma takes some getting used to. "WHY DOES MY RIGHT CLICK DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT EVERY TIME I TOUCH THE #%&*@# BUTTON??" I remember my first taste of the game lol.

    That vibrant vanilla player base is what we have decided we can do. Now this Insurgency mission has been designed to exactly fill that niche. Make it easy to get in with a couple buds and start it up.

    Lately we are now toying with some modded content for about 2 events per month. This is reassessed probably every two months or so by me. As things change with accessibility and inclusion of mods with the in-game launcher it gets easier to manage. But let me raise one more spectre....custom content requires custom missions. Oh yeah, did we forget about that. Create a custom mission, test it to be sure it is fit for a flawless run on an event because there is already enough that can/will go wrong!

    Now to that end let me bring in a few quotes from another thread and pass this over to you guys. I will edit this as indicated so comments are not taken out of context and leave a link to the original.

    Originally posted by SARGE View Post
    I love it when the mod lovers go bonkers, because of the past mod lovers getting their way this ex admin never got to play with those mods or on the TG servers. Why?, all his time was spent helping all the mod lovers and their friends to get set up to play. All is forgiven towards everyone as long as you remember that Teamwork is far superior to any Mod out there. Stay Vanilla and concentrate on learning better tactics and teamwork and not more new keybinds and wasteing time keeping up with mod updates that break more things then they fix. But the mod lovers aren't concerned with that, they just want what they want, it's the Admins that are suppost to handle all that right ,wrong. What is best for the community is how we roll. I enjoy gaming with the Admins and will always back their mod or non-mod decisions.


    Originally posted by Wicks View Post
    ...
    Insurgency - an open door, easy access type server...random Thursday evening...turnout 25 including many new people to TG who will help grow the community.
    ...(Insurgency) does however feed the Community with new blood, is relatively easy to maintain in comparison yet still able to be fine tuned (as it currently is). In feeding the Community with new blood it brings in new potential Supporting members that help pay for the things we enjoy, new potential Admins to actually run the servers, brings in new friends for all of us, enriches our experience and also potentially introduces people to the Community who may want to try out modded content at a later date, once they have found their feet.

    When I see posts with a lot of "I this" and "I want that" I (Lol) am afraid it tends to conjures the picture of someone with a very short term view about things. ... It's that many of us understand that as with most things there is always a trade off and unlike some people requesting them (understandably) those in the position to make the decision have to weigh the Pro's and Con's, have to consider how it all fits into a plan to not only deliver premium content to our regulars but continue to attract people to our Community based on our core principles which are maturity, teamwork, tactics and realistic play. Not the Radio, the uniform, the authenticity of the crummy Russian optics etc.

    Mods are potentially an enriching element of Arma. They are also a barrier to many, many people. In being a barrier to new people they are a barrier to the success of a title. This is plainly obvious. ... Arma is a little different in the sense that it is a sandbox game and almost a platform as opposed to a game. That's the reality. However that doesn't really matter to people new to the game. To be frank it doesn't really matter to a Community like ours.
    ... That's the reality for many people. Pitfalls at every stage, traps that effectively wear people down and stop them from playing what is without doubt the best Tactical Combat simulator available. That's a damn tragedy and a hindrance and I hope people have the wit about them to understand why it is necessary to address that as a Community, for everyone's benefit.


    Our concern is, how do we grow the playerbase so that we can support all types of Arma content and ensure it's quality and longevity for all. So, please if there is a delay in implementing your favourite mod or if you're told it's not possible or planned at the moment, take a moment to think about why that is and give credit to the people that make the decisions about these things on behalf of the WHOLE community and TG as an Organisation. If you feel that the approach is still lacking allow me to suggest a radical idea. Pick up a Supporting Membership and volunteer for Admin Duty. Help shoulder the load of delivering a variety of content that not only supports and facillitates the existing Community but has one eye on building and nurturing the Community going forward so we all benefit. If mods are being run but turnout is a bit low because new people want to play but are struggling to get themselves sorted, step forward and help those in need with their set up. Help build the Community you want to see, don't just turn up now and again empty handed with a list of demands.

    By ensuring our servers are accessible to people we actually safeguard the quality of the environment for everyone, fans of modded and non-modded content alike. We create the numbers that make epic events possible, be they modded or not. Have patience, have a little faith, have a little consideration for others. If you want to see more modded content then help on the non modded server to build the Community. See, that's the funny thing about Community, the more you put into it, the more you get out.
    Originally posted by Scotty View Post
    Well thought out.

    You mentioned New blood and how some will become supporting members, donate, regulars, and friends but people want to play vanilla only and say thats what TG has always been.

    When I discovered TG it was when I was pubbing back in ARMA2, you guys were playing on your public server and had about 15+ doing the TG thing that has a way of hooking the right people in. I played on the public server for a few weeks and of course the first week I had already registered on your forum and been on your team speak. There was a big event planned and you guys were advertising it on your public server via timed admin messages as well as the friends I had already made told me to sign up on the forums while we were in the middle of a town one game. I go to the forums, follow the TG simplified way of a complicated task of installing the mods that were needed. I had issues, people helped me out within 1 minute of joining the help channel. I was then ADDICTED to TG after playing with a locked server when 100% of the mission planning, chain of command, radio freqs, etc were all hammered out a week ahead of time.

    TL;DR-
    TG had 2/3 arma2 servers. Vanilla/Modded/TvT(?)

    (Server #1) Populated 60-70% of time with members, hooks new blood to TS/Website/Mod server(maybe) -> (Server #2) Pre-planned Events where CO/XO/SL's stepped up quick to begin pre-planning with mission maker. Non-event days where members wanted a break from teaching newbies.

    Server #1-The public vanilla server stayed active almost 7 days a week because of new blood, non-event day, non-modded day, or TG members/Regs who did not prefer the mods.
    Server #2-The modded server would be populated atleast heavily once a week, then throughout the week idle or a squad or two of TG members/regs.
    Server #3-I may be confusing with the public vanilla server but we use to take stabs at TvT but never really stuck, players wanted to work against AI more.
    And let me add one more comment regarding that last quote as a point, that back then we didn't have the same players playing all of our content as we do now. It is absolutely awesome to play wether it is a modded Tactical Tuesday event or Insurgency with all of our current regulars. Just an absolute joy to be able to fire up the game when I have an hour in these busy days and know I'll be playing with great peeps in no time.

    Now, join in as you feel...
    |TG-189th| Unkl
    ArmA 3 Game Officer
    Dean of Tactical Gamer University
    189th Infantry Brigade Member
    SUBMIT A RIBBON NOMINATION OR CONTACT AN ARMA ADMIN
    "We quickly advance in the opposite direction and take cover in a house on the SW side of town." - BadStache

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

      Originally posted by Unkl View Post

      It's the effect on community building and admin back room work where mods can still have unintended consequences.

      ... It is absolutely awesome to play whether it is a modded Tactical Tuesday event or Insurgency with all of our current regulars. Just an absolute joy to be able to fire up the game when I have an hour in these busy days and know I'll be playing with great peeps in no time.
      ...
      Excellent post and good beginning of a discussion. The two points above are my two big take aways with an eye on number one as a guiding principle for a positive end result.

      ARMA is tech heavy and as an admin this was always my weak side. I had my strong points elsewhere but others, like Unk were tasked with the endless cycle of updating required by the mod set. This was done for an extended time in ARMA 2 with ACE and resulted in a unique, tight and cohesive player base producing thousands of great player base hours. So that is a brief outline of the recent history. All good but demanding. The tools are better but not yet comprehensive or uniformly used to eliminate all confusion.

      From my perspective Insurgency as a persistent mission has delivered on a number of fronts. This factors my view point that modded play as a weekly or bi weekly feature is a good compromise going forward. You know more advanced missions can be found on the second server. We should try to port players over when select opportunities arise. I'm curious to follow the rest of the discussion. As a TGer I support which ever direction we go with but with the caveat we make vanilla play at least available on one instance of our servers. The Admin team is doing outstanding work. ARMA as a title has more momentum now than it has in some time. Thank you.
      sigpic
      |TG-1st|Grunt
      ARMA Admin (retired)
      Pathfinder-Spartan 5

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

        I agree with the one vanilla server for that jump on and off easily gaming and for bringing new blood to show them the TG way with the least amount of pressure to all concerned. I am fine with modded events as long as there are fairly easy download instructions (where to find) and which mods we are using because I know how to add them into the game files and use a loader for starting with mods. Keeping the mods all up to date and all of us on the same page, well that is the rub. I may not game as much as I would like, but when I do it is always Arma III... stay thirsty my friends.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

          I am not sure what you are asking for here UNKL, be it an attempt to convince you this is something we should do or to respond to the occasional two month modded event idea.

          I am all for a modded server, but there would need to be some simple ground rules based on maximum probability for compatibility with the player base. What more do we need than a radio, a few maps with very high extra-community reviews. (I think I created a word there...), and maybe some skins for the weapons?

          Do we need more realistic sound effects, firing visuals, weather effects, or the like? I think that is a bit much considering my take is the majority of those wanting a modded server at least all agree on a few staples that may help transform the experience for those who seek it.

          Feels good to be having this conversation.

          Who among the community would be willing to help maintain the mods should, and if, the admins request it?

          Signatures are a must. I never want to have to deal with what we went through on Bravo right before it was decided we needed them.

          Current ARMA Development Project: No Current Project

          "An infantryman needs a leader to be the standard against which he can judge all soldiers."

          Friend of |TG| Chief

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

            Dimi,

            I'm not really asking for anything to be honest. There was a discussion happening in another thread that went off topic. I've just copied part of it here so it can happen in the right context. I've added a little history here so that a discussion about the topic can happen with knowledge of the history of why we are at the point we are.

            Now the sub-text of "I want" that is present in some of the regular posts that happen on this topic can be properly juxtaposed from the decisions made in the context of what is best for the community. Our strengths continue to be people and teamwork. Not mod this or that. Our strength comes from realism in tactics not mil-sim role play.

            In the past some mods lead down an elitist path of complexity that didn't serve our core aims. Good tactics and communication are what I'm thinking of here. Actions under contact. Discipline of individual movements to not cross in front...these things are at the core of TG teamwork. More complexity in some areas can hinder this evolution of our core and steer us down the direction of (for lack of a nicer term) fluff content. It looks great, it add a layer of interaction that may add immersion, but presents another obstacle in a roadblock for the road of our newest players.

            Like I've said, the use of additional mod content for a limited series of planned events may continue as has been now for only the last 3 months. There is no plan to be adding to that in the near future.

            No one will help me with the server side work - that is by design from far above my head - and for good reasons. We have an awesome platform from which we run our ArmA instances. I will continue to be the only one with access and that will work fine for many reasons.

            I wouldn't even post here for days if you didn't direct your question directly at me. If the community wants a discussion, I just created the thread to have it happen in. The Tactical Tuesday event thread was getting off topic is all. So, I'm pretty clear on what the history and reasoning is. Thought I should share a little more about it too.

            The difference between our past and now is pretty good too. I sure don't miss the time when we had cliques of people that played the same game. Seems quite silly now.

            **Edit: You know what I want though....meh, seems little point in opening that pandora's box anyway. ;) I'll stick with the here & now.
            Last edited by Unkl; 08-11-2015, 02:40 PM.
            |TG-189th| Unkl
            ArmA 3 Game Officer
            Dean of Tactical Gamer University
            189th Infantry Brigade Member
            SUBMIT A RIBBON NOMINATION OR CONTACT AN ARMA ADMIN
            "We quickly advance in the opposite direction and take cover in a house on the SW side of town." - BadStache

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

              There are no good old days.

              These are the good old days.

              Thanks for responding.

              Current ARMA Development Project: No Current Project

              "An infantryman needs a leader to be the standard against which he can judge all soldiers."

              Friend of |TG| Chief

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

                Carly Simon said that.
                sigpic
                |TG-1st|Grunt
                ARMA Admin (retired)
                Pathfinder-Spartan 5

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

                  Well maybe then this becomes the place we can talk about what mods we'd like to see in upcoming events. Mods are fun but I love new maps and terrain. The Kunduz map was great, small but great for a structured mission I thought. Wouldn't it be great if we could go back to older maps in ARMA 3 like Chernorus and Sahrani. Or probably more realistic, new maps like Kunduz, that were created for ARMA 3. Just throwing out some ideas to see what sticks.


                  But.... There's nothing I'm missing or need in the current TG ARMA scene so these are nice to haves not need to haves for me.
                  sigpic
                  |TG-1st|Grunt
                  ARMA Admin (retired)
                  Pathfinder-Spartan 5

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

                    I am a big fan of mods in two area - comms and maps. The Danish island map (Bornholm?) and Afghanistan were great to me. If we need MCC to spare people the trouble of mission building on different maps - great. TF Radio seems stable and flexible and frankly the hassle of VON in vanilla is a big turnoff in my book. People who like the full mod pack seem to go to TacBF which is fun but far less organized than TG.

                    Cheers!
                    sigpic

                    Canadjun, eh?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

                      I agree Biggs, should we consider ease? Why use RHS when there are mods that have more functionality that we will use and they can be subscribed through Steam Workshop! Easy PZ!

                      Maybe try to focus on simplicity of Steam Workshop for some mods?

                      ** EDIT: Since I never use MCC, I am now aware that TRYK and MCC do not work together so to use a specific uniform(faction) you have to place each model.. so thats no go on these with MCC created missions. Unless there is some way to add the classes into MCC

                      My submission for mods would be:

                      @TaskForceRadio - http://radio.task-force.ru/en/ (We all love comm variety and control, multiple headsets for command/SL, speaker option for FT to hear)
                      @TRYK's Multiplay uniforms - https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfil...79&searchtext= (Highly suggest we check this out.. huge range of uniforms from snow to police uniforms.)
                      @Thirsk - http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=9861 (Love this map)
                      @HLC Core - https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfil...searchtext=hlc (...Weapons... This guy releases tons of HLC mods on steam, they look great. This is the core needed. All HLC sets require ASDQ Joint Rails)
                      @HLC AR15 - https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfil...searchtext=hlc (Cool-Guy, realistically modded, great weapons that will make your eyes explode when you finally can select something besides the MX series)
                      @ASDQ_JR - https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfil...xt=joint+rails (Any gun mod requires it)
                      Last edited by Scotty; 08-13-2015, 11:45 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

                        A point to make for this discussion: I recently cleaned up my mods folders...totaled something over 100 GB

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

                          [MENTION=116522]Evanovich[/MENTION] - I had a similar experience. I had mods in three different places from various mod managers. Going to have to get a dedicated Arma hard drive I guess :)

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                          • #14
                            Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

                            Bigger and dedicated "ArmA" SSD . . . . ;-)

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Discussion: Mostly vanilla content for Arma 3

                              Having had the opportunity to sit on the both sides of the fence (Admin, and player). I can relate to Unkl's issues, totally.

                              In my experience, as the trend goes in this specific community (ARMA), at any point when a new MODpack comes out (or specific addons). These things will happen:
                              1. Player downloads/installs the addon/Modpack.
                              2. Checks it out on their own or joins a server that enabled them.
                              3. Deletes the addons, or downloads more to find out what else is out there.
                              4. Joins a server to try those addons again.

                              The above mentioned process, is pretty much in broad terms what happens.

                              What is missing, from those stages is the 'exposure to a server's play-style' during their visit. Whether it be the mil-sim aspect of it, or their own particular methods that attracts the visiting player, to the support they get during their stay. There are many more that you can think of, I'm certain of it.

                              I suppose, we can start a new lightly modded server (notice I didn't use the words such as 'BRAVO', 'restart', 'revisit').
                              When I mean by this is quite simple. A blank approach, give the players the content. Allow the missions makers some new ways they can be creative. Without going into 100GB of dead weight in our addon folders.

                              I can see without being a 'regular' player these days, that the repeating issue that comes out is the VOIP within ARMA.
                              Of which I can totally agree with. I heard myself being echoed 3 seconds laters via direct at some point.
                              I understand and sympathise with the admin team (this is my own presumption) when more addons are added in time.
                              Making it difficult for the 'new' players of ARMA not being able to join our server, being one issue.

                              Another option is to allow such Mod server to be open and not locked. (ARMA enthusiasts will know what they are missing and grab them via the Steam/ARMA's own mod thang). Simultaneously allowing for our regulars to enjoy the dare I utter the words, much needed content. Not for the 'want', but out of necessity.

                              There are times when controlled environment is needed, conversely there are times when you need to allow it to develop on its own without a direct supervision. One can't make a leader, by keeping them in a constant cocoon of a safe environment.
                              Speaking of leaders, I mean our player base. Of which they are an absolute awesome bunch of players with innate ability to grow well into any leadership roles. Since the Tactical Gamer environment does nothing but allows and promotes such developments in our players. This is a very unique thing that TG offers, in abundance. Which is very hard to find I believe.

                              As much as it pains me to say this (having been through the admin side of heavy mod updating etc), I think that at least the TFR addon (radio), and possibly some few that adds to the atmosphere of the game will not hurt our current player base. That much I know, for certain.

                              I would volunteer to assist any new players if they need help to get into the Mod server if and when it does get a green light. But this is a moot point, since I know our TG members will jump over each other to help them.

                              My 2 cents (with lots of whisky)

                              TGU Instructor TG Pathfinder

                              Former TGU Dean Former ARMA Admin Former Irregulars Officer

                              "Do not seek death. Death will find you. But seek the road which makes death a fulfillment." - Dag Hammarskjold

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