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How does our feedback work

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TUXs's Avatar


TUXs
06.21.2017 , 08:14 AM | #31
Quote: Originally Posted by DanNV View Post
"How does our feedback work?"

It doesn't. The only feedback EA and therefore BW understands is the bottom line. When people take their money away they start trying to placate the players. Until then they just don't give a !@^%$. It's a shame, but that pattern has been the norm since launch and is a good part of why the current player base is so small. Well, that and poor game design choices like 4.x and 5.x and the next set of ill conceived, poorly planned nerfs.
Sadly, I think you're correct. Ben absolutely acted this way - ignoring his customers. Keith seems to be doing the opposite...so give him time please. I know you dislike the nerfs, but those haven't gone live yet...I hope they don't.
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Icykill_'s Avatar


Icykill_
06.21.2017 , 09:33 AM | #32
Quote: Originally Posted by EricMusco View Post
This is a fantastic question! Keith, Charles, and I discussed this and we want to make sure we are really thorough in giving you the full picture on how feedback is gathered, where it is gathered from, and how the team uses it. What we are going to do is turn this thread into our discussion topic for the week.

Tomorrow, all 3 of us (Keith, Charles, and myself) will make posts highlighting how our job roles interact with player feedback as it relates to the team, decision making, etc. Then we can have a conversation about feedback in general.

Great question, now it's a rabbit hole we are going to jump down together! Look for our posts tomorrow.

-eric
Hi Eric,

Thank you for your reply. I look forward to your posts
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dscount's Avatar


dscount
06.21.2017 , 10:03 AM | #33
I have to agree that we need to give it a little time, but they are in fire fighting mode now. If they can patch things up and show the community how things are changing for better (Yes - some nerfs will still happen). Then the mass of unhappy people will put down the tar & feathers.

Meanwhile - NiM loot feedback I'm interested in seeing how they handle that to show they take feedback and use it.
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EricMusco's Avatar


EricMusco
06.21.2017 , 01:16 PM | #34 Click here to go to the next staff post in this thread. Next  
Hey folks,

As mentioned above, Keith, Charles, and I will make posts in this thread about how we manage/use player feedback in our roles. This is a pretty extensive topic so these posts may be a bit long! I’ll kick this party off.

Let’s start by talking about my role as Community Manager. Understanding and using player feedback is a critical part of my job. I participate in a fair amount of business, design, and leadership meetings and my role is to act as a litmus test for the players. Will players like the changes, not like the changes, where will the challenges be, how do we message it, will it impact all players or only a subset, and more. I help ensure the decision makers (such as Keith and Charles) understand the impact their decisions will have on the playerbase.

With that as a backdrop, let me talk about where and how we gather feedback. One of the main reasons we gather feedback from so many sources is to ensure we are covering as many types of players as possible. Players come from all walks of life and playstyles and so it is extremely important we understand and consider everyone in our discussions. An example would be these very forums. Those of you who post here represent a small percentage of the overall player-base, are all subscribers, and lean towards a handful of specific, highly engaged playstyles. If we only looked at the forums, it would cover a narrow band of feedback. This in no way diminishes the immense value we garner from your participation here, so please don’t take that as a slight. Now let’s talk about some of the various places we get feedback!

The Official Forums and SWTOR Subreddit
I will put the two of these together since they are treated fairly similar. We all read them every day, multiple times a day. It is extremely common that we will link threads to each other in email or internal chats. We will use these threads as conversation points in meetings and I will include them in various reports that I send up to the team. Bug reports come from both of those sources which is incredibly valuable to us. Lastly, I use both the forums and Reddit to have private conversations with folks about various issues including harassment, exploit reports, etc.

Social Media
Most of the feedback we receive here comes from Twitter, and it tends to be a bit more broad in the information we are getting. That is, we don’t commonly receive “this specific thing has an issue,” and instead will receive “I think this new XXX is really good/bad because of YYY.” Twitter is also a great resource for service level feedback, such as when we have server/web issues. Social media is also a great source of sharing user-generated content and things from our Influencers and various content creators!

Influencers
As many of you know, we have a collection of content creators who are part of our Influencer Program. We gather feedback from them through multiple means. First, we watch/read/listen to their content. Whether it is a blog, livestream, or podcast we try to catch as much of their great content as we can. Second, I am in fairly constant communication with them through multiple means: email, forums, skype, twitter, etc. Lastly, the Influencer group is under NDA with us and so that provides some other unique opportunities to work with them and gather feedback!

Focus Groups
We host focus groups for a range of topics and we do it at all stages of development. As early as when things are in the “idea phase” all the way up to playable. Focus groups allow us to get feedback in a controlled manner and more importantly, allow us to ensure we are getting feedback from a very diverse set of players. From the most hardcore to the most casual, we are able to capture all playstyles.

There are many more places where feedback comes from such as PTS, data analytics, etc. I hope the above examples outline that we gather feedback from multiple places to get a full picture of player opinion. Again, I wanted to really focus in on my role and how feedback is used, which is to help inform me on player opinion and reactions. I will let Keith and Charles talk more about what impact it has on development.

-eric
Eric Musco | Community Manager
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ZionHalcyon's Avatar


ZionHalcyon
06.21.2017 , 01:39 PM | #35
Quote: Originally Posted by EricMusco View Post
Hey folks,

As mentioned above, Keith, Charles, and I will make posts in this thread about how we manage/use player feedback in our roles. This is a pretty extensive topic so these posts may be a bit long! I’ll kick this party off.

Let’s start by talking about my role as Community Manager. Understanding and using player feedback is a critical part of my job. I participate in a fair amount of business, design, and leadership meetings and my role is to act as a litmus test for the players. Will players like the changes, not like the changes, where will the challenges be, how do we message it, will it impact all players or only a subset, and more. I help ensure the decision makers (such as Keith and Charles) understand the impact their decisions will have on the playerbase.

With that as a backdrop, let me talk about where and how we gather feedback. One of the main reasons we gather feedback from so many sources is to ensure we are covering as many types of players as possible. Players come from all walks of life and playstyles and so it is extremely important we understand and consider everyone in our discussions. An example would be these very forums. Those of you who post here represent a small percentage of the overall player-base, are all subscribers, and lean towards a handful of specific, highly engaged playstyles. If we only looked at the forums, it would cover a narrow band of feedback. This in no way diminishes the immense value we garner from your participation here, so please don’t take that as a slight. Now let’s talk about some of the various places we get feedback!

The Official Forums and SWTOR Subreddit
I will put the two of these together since they are treated fairly similar. We all read them every day, multiple times a day. It is extremely common that we will link threads to each other in email or internal chats. We will use these threads as conversation points in meetings and I will include them in various reports that I send up to the team. Bug reports come from both of those sources which is incredibly valuable to us. Lastly, I use both the forums and Reddit to have private conversations with folks about various issues including harassment, exploit reports, etc.

Social Media
Most of the feedback we receive here comes from Twitter, and it tends to be a bit more broad in the information we are getting. That is, we don’t commonly receive “this specific thing has an issue,” and instead will receive “I think this new XXX is really good/bad because of YYY.” Twitter is also a great resource for service level feedback, such as when we have server/web issues. Social media is also a great source of sharing user-generated content and things from our Influencers and various content creators!

Influencers
As many of you know, we have a collection of content creators who are part of our Influencer Program. We gather feedback from them through multiple means. First, we watch/read/listen to their content. Whether it is a blog, livestream, or podcast we try to catch as much of their great content as we can. Second, I am in fairly constant communication with them through multiple means: email, forums, skype, twitter, etc. Lastly, the Influencer group is under NDA with us and so that provides some other unique opportunities to work with them and gather feedback!

Focus Groups
We host focus groups for a range of topics and we do it at all stages of development. As early as when things are in the “idea phase” all the way up to playable. Focus groups allow us to get feedback in a controlled manner and more importantly, allow us to ensure we are getting feedback from a very diverse set of players. From the most hardcore to the most casual, we are able to capture all playstyles.

There are many more places where feedback comes from such as PTS, data analytics, etc. I hope the above examples outline that we gather feedback from multiple places to get a full picture of player opinion. Again, I wanted to really focus in on my role and how feedback is used, which is to help inform me on player opinion and reactions. I will let Keith and Charles talk more about what impact it has on development.

-eric

Seems these influencers hold a good degree of sway. Not saying that as a bad thing, but it could provide some very limited feedback given how much it is weighted - my point being, those hardcore enough to put up a stream, a blog, etc likely skew mostly towards endgame if I had to guess, be that PvP or Operations. Only reason I say that is because from a personality profile standpoint, the people who are playing just to enjoy the story are less likely to be someone who is dedicated enough to start up something like that.

That doesn't mean those influencers hate story - nothing is black and white - but it is more likely they don't hold story in the same regard as others, as leveling for them is about spacebarring content to get to endgame as quick as possible to engage in how they choose to enjoy the game.

The forums used to be a bastion for the pro-story people, although with the reduced numbers, I do wonder if many have moved on - I remember people leaving in waves after the initial announcement of no more class story, and then another wave after KotFE ended up going off in a very strange and different direction than what came before to the point where some said it didn't fee like Star Wars.

I guess what I am wondering is, while I do think all this feedback is important, where is BioWare getting their story feedback from? Because I feel like if they were getting quality feedback on story, the KotFE/KotET debacle could have been avoided in the first place, and even with it there now, there are story options to get the game back on track to what the people who left originally fell in love with, so long as the team is willing to listen to that feedback and willing to change some things, both going forward, and also some restructuring of what's already been released (so as to re-use assets)...

MandFlurry's Avatar


MandFlurry
06.21.2017 , 01:47 PM | #36
Thanks Eric, i actually cant wait to hear about the others. Your job i knew about most of the things, but maybe a few. I still don't know how someone can handle being a Community Manager. It can be very unforgiving.
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ZionHalcyon's Avatar


ZionHalcyon
06.21.2017 , 01:55 PM | #37
Quote: Originally Posted by MandFlurry View Post
Thanks Eric, i actually cant wait to hear about the others. Your job i knew about most of the things, but maybe a few. I still don't know how someone can handle being a Community Manager. It can be very unforgiving.
I wonder if Eric was handcuffed before. Because he has been on point since the Producer change, moreso than I have EVER seen him.

Being a community manager means being active in the community. Soliciting feedback, and some of the better ones will shoot the breeze with the forum people, essentially trying to foster an environment of positivity so feedback can be more productive and there's less of "I know more about the game than you do, you suck, RAWR!!!" type posts.

Eric is doing a bang up job right now. Granted its only a few months in since the change at the top, but it's been the strongest few months I've seen from him since he started. Kudos to him.

DarthSpuds's Avatar


DarthSpuds
06.21.2017 , 02:03 PM | #38
While I am absolutely delighted with this new openness, and genuinely hope the greater understanding between players and Bioware it should lead to revitalizes the the game, I am dubious as to how that can happen unless we address the huge Ice Tromper in the room.

If this:

Quote: Originally Posted by EricMusco View Post

Let’s start by talking about my role as Community Manager. Understanding and using player feedback is a critical part of my job. I participate in a fair amount of business, design, and leadership meetings and my role is to act as a litmus test for the players. Will players like the changes, not like the changes, where will the challenges be, how do we message it, will it impact all players or only a subset, and more. I help ensure the decision makers (such as Keith and Charles) understand the impact their decisions will have on the playerbase.

-eric
is even remotely close to being on the same ballpark as "accurate" how the hell did we end up with 5.0?

I dare anyone from Bioware to link to any feedback at all that supported the idea that 5.0 would be well received by even a significant minority of the playerbase.

Eric, Keith, Charles - I genuinely believe you (and the whole Bioware team) want things to improve, and I believe that this new openness is just one of the processes that should lead to that.

But until you can explain to us how the nice job description above being put into practice ended up with us getting 5.0 then you will fail. Trying something semi-new ONLY ever works when you fully understand why what went before didn't work.

And this new openness and willingness to communicate has not demonstrated that you do; because so far I have not seen one single post from with Bioware that starts with:
Quote:
We are sorry for 5.0, here is what we did wrong, and this is how it led us to make ALL the wrong decisions.
Until we get that I believe that this "new era" is only being followed half-heartedly, and is to some extent just smoke and mirrors.

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fifteendollers's Avatar


fifteendollers
06.21.2017 , 02:10 PM | #39
Quote: Originally Posted by DarthSpuds View Post
While I am absolutely delighted with this new openness, and genuinely hope the greater understanding between players and Bioware it should lead to revitalizes the the game, I am dubious as to how that can happen unless we address the huge Ice Tromper in the room.

If this:



is even remotely close to being on the same ballpark as "accurate" how the hell did we end up with 5.0?

I dare anyone from Bioware to link to any feedback at all that supported the idea that 5.0 would be well received by even a significant minority of the playerbase.

Eric, Keith, Charles - I genuinely believe you (and the whole Bioware team) want things to improve, and I believe that this new openness is just one of the processes that should lead to that.

But until you can explain to us how the nice job description above being put into practice ended up with us getting 5.0 then you will fail. Trying something semi-new ONLY ever works when you fully understand why what went before didn't work.

And this new openness and willingness to communicate has not demonstrated that you do; because so far I have not seen one single post from with Bioware that starts with:


Until we get that I believe that this "new era" is only being followed half-heartedly, and is to some extent just smoke and mirrors.

All The Best
Don't know if you've noticed, but certain things have changed since 5.0.

Xo-Lara's Avatar


Xo-Lara
06.21.2017 , 02:30 PM | #40
Great. Now can we get some guidelines on how to make our feedback more helpful/understandable to the team?
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