The Playtest Agreement - Page 8


What's on your mind?

  1. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by mudbunny View Post
    Don't play online is onerous? Really?
    When your regular game group is half a dozen people with jobs, and spouses, and kids, spread across four states, no online play does present a certain unique hurdle. Does agreeing to that impact my life in some negative way? No. Does it impact my ability to playtest the rules and provide the useful feedback requested of me? Well, ya.
    I gave one guy an Everfull Bag of Peanuts. It wasn't something I'd planned. But when a guy plans out a ritual dedicated to the minotaur god of baseball and then dances around the room moo-ing "Take Me Out to the Ballgame", you gotta give him something.

 

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    I am not saying that it is inconvenient that they are prohibiting playtesting via online routes. It sure as heck inconveniences me as none of my local group is at all willing to try something new. However, to label it as "onerous" or an example of how WotC views openness/customers (when I can, with almost 100% certainty, state that it was placed there due to lawyers) is to engage in hyperbole theatre.

    We are 4 days into a playtest that is expected to last, by all best guesses, for over a year. That is a little over 1% of the playtest.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mudbunny View Post
    I am not saying that it is inconvenient that they are prohibiting playtesting via online routes. It sure as heck inconveniences me as none of my local group is at all willing to try something new. However, to label it as "onerous" or an example of how WotC views openness/customers (when I can, with almost 100% certainty, state that it was placed there due to lawyers) is to engage in hyperbole theatre.
    Oh, I am nearly sure it is the lawyers that brought that on. But again whether is be the lawyers, the designers at WotC or whomever, it does not change the fact that this is being poorly perceived by a portion of the gaming community. A portion that seems to be growing (portion as in gamers that use online methods to play).

    Again, I wouldn't label it as onerous, but still frustrating. And I can't blame people that see this as an indication that corporate lawyers are still in charge of a lot of decisions. For those of us that make heavy use of electronic tools and online gaming platforms that is frustrating - regardless of who made the decision at WotC.

    It seems even more odd in that it seems the friends and family playtesters *could* use Skype and online VTTs to play.

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    I suppose limiting it to groups of a certain size and proximity forces those who are serious about playtesting to recruit other players in their area. While some online playtesting GMs might only play with people they know in real life and be able to fully vouch for them as being legitimate playtesters, there will surely be some who have obtained the materials illegally and slip into groups of online playtesters and thus potentially invalidate the feedback. It's similar to the no-PDF-sales policy in that if a few folks were ripping off the most recent edition by filesharing the latest PHB (as WotC proffered and documented), then it is best not to sell any PDFs whatsoever. I agree with mudbunny that this is merely an inconvenience for some customers whose primary means of gaming is through the Internet, a medium that is unlikely to have any real bearing on the future of the game.
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  • #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by ardaughter
    I agree, and instead of prohibiting play, just forbid online redistrubtion for any other purpose than online play and request that no feedback be given from online play at this time would be a better approach. It would have generated no badwill among people that cannot run the material face to face and not skew the results of the play test.
    What is the point of allowing playtesters that cannot actually report their playtest experience? Color me silly, but, isn't the entire point of this exercise to get that feedback?

    Again, as Mudbunny says, this is 4 days into the playtest. And, as usual, the usual suspects are going to try stirring the pot to paint anything and everything WOTC does as Teh Evil.

    Good grief, you cannot participate in a playtest online. OH NOES!! WOTC is killing kittehs now!

    Sheesh.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mudbunny View Post
    However, to label it as "onerous" or an example of how WotC views openness/customers (when I can, with almost 100% certainty, state that it was placed there due to lawyers) is to engage in hyperbole theatre.
    You can say that, but it doesn't make it true.

    Making everyone involved sign the agreement, disallowing online play, etc - all restrictions being made out of some demented sense of keeping control over actual utility to the customer or obtaining of valid feedback.

    You will note how other playtests, like Pathfinder's, didn't put any of these restrictions on people.

    It's not hyperbole to say that's emblematic of how different companies treat their customers. WotC has treated their customers as borderline criminals, to be kept on the straight and narrow by legal restrictions - this is just the newest, no need to go through the GSL and pulling PDF sales and the many other historical examples of this. 5e is an opportunity for them to take a fundamentally different, more customer focused direction, but they're not. "It's the lawyers, probably" is no defense - it's all WotC. What does it matter if it's Mearls or Barrister Asmodeus making the decision? "It's their right to do it" the apologists will say, but just because it's your legal right to be a dick, doesn't mean anyone except a judge should accept it.

    Based on this, I'd say the likelihood they'll go with an open license at publication time is very low. The likelihood they've learned their lesson and plan to foster a rich ecosystem of third party publishers rather than alienating them like they did in 4e with their shenanigans with the GSL is low. And that's a significant impediment to how well 5e will do and therefore to how likely I am to bother with it.
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    They're killing kittens too? Now I'm really going to battle!

    Good grief, you cannot participate in a playtest online. OH NOES!! WOTC is killing kittehs now!

    Sheesh.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hussar View Post
    What is the point of allowing playtesters that cannot actually report their playtest experience? Color me silly, but, isn't the entire point of this exercise to get that feedback?

    Again, as Mudbunny says, this is 4 days into the playtest. And, as usual, the usual suspects are going to try stirring the pot to paint anything and everything WOTC does as Teh Evil.

    Good grief, you cannot participate in a playtest online. OH NOES!! WOTC is killing kittehs now!

    Sheesh.

    Indeed. The people marginalizing the opinions of others by using hyperbole and mischaracterizing the feedback of others if it doesn't agree with their own really ought to allow that some folks won't find everything is to their liking.
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  • #79
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    Yup. Usual suspects and all that.

    I'll be bowing out now. This is starting to piss me off and there's no way that this is going to end well.

    My advice, for what it's worth? When dealing with those who refuse to accept that there might just be legitimate reasons for what WOTC does, look at their motivations and realize that no matter what WOTC does, there will be those who will spin it in the most negative way possible simply to "prove" their point.
    The rules don't give the DM their authority. The consent of the players does. - Mallus

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hussar View Post
    My advice, for what it's worth? When dealing with those who refuse to accept that there might just be legitimate reasons for what WOTC does, look at their motivations and realize that no matter what WOTC does, there will be those who will spin it in the most negative way possible simply to "prove" their point.

    And my advice would be to read the specifics of what people are posting as feedback for WotC and not to attempt to dismiss it or misrepresent it. Disagreeing with specific feedback is exactly the type of back and forth WotC will benefit from reading. Claiming the folks with which you disagree are somehow irrational ("everything WOTC does as Teh Evil" or "OH NOES!! WOTC is killing kittehs now!") serves no useful purpose. Furthermore, assuming that whatever "legitimate reasons" WotC might believe they have for their decisions will automatically glean a successful end-product is antithetical to the feedback process WotC has directly requested.
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