First Play Reactions (a note to the devs)


  • TF#1 - WHISPERER

    I bought the early access the other day, and have now spent 2 days trying out the game so far. Some of this is QoL and polishing issues that will probably be addressed in beta, but these are things that jumped out at me:

    Most UI actions seem fairly well though out and intuitive if you've played a video game before. I'm not too sure I like hiding the other/advanced materials behind the base though. Just put it all on one line and show the quantities available under each, and a bright boarder to indicate the chosen material.

    I would like to see a color other than gray used for active and usable buttons, gray almost always means not available. I like the muted colors, but it's been taken a bit too far. Just a little bit more contrast, but let's not go full cartoonist, like the gold against the brown background to indicate a change from description to choices need to be made is not great.

    For the gathering out side of looting, there needs to be a better indication of what is interact-able and what is not. It's hard to distinguish between some interact-able items and background terrain and flora. Maybe the colors need to 'pop' just a little bit more, or have just a slightly heaver shadow, nothing to dramatic, just enough to lend a visual clue, especially with little stones and some plants.

    Something that gives a clue what weapon is equipped, other than what's in my characters hand. Just a small icon by the tool bar?

    Of course inventory will probably be addressed later, but shift click or something to transfer stacks, and sort and find management is needed. A warning before your character is over weight would be nice too.

    Now onto some bigger issues:

    There seems to be some weird lag issue, but it's too steady to be lag. As I'm running my character takes a few strides and the screen freezes, not even for a second, just a blip, a few more strides, and again. I've also seen it in a few YT videos and adjusting the settings makes no difference in it's occurrence.

    I also noticed that some of the creatures were targeting my character before they were fully on my screen. It wasn't consistent, but it happened a few times on different character in different areas with different mobs. There needs to be some check that the mob is with in the view range and on the screen before it targets the player.

    The next thing that makes me worry is the lack of accuracy on matching bounding boxes to the graphics. Granted this is one of my pet peeves, and I know that some devs do it on purpose. To me it just screams laziness. Lets take the trees, you've blotched out this HUGE area on my screen for interacting with trees that makes it difficult to move and interact with anything around them. In real life a person would typically start an interaction with a tree at or near the tree trunk. So forget all the branches, just a nice small rectangular bounding box at the base of the tree trunk please.

    There needs to be some level of priority to bounding boxes too. A live target that is attacking my character should take priority over a loot bounding box of a dead creature. Just because this attacking creature is standing on top of a dead body shouldn't mean that I can't attack it because the loot option for the corpse keeps coming up. I also noticed that if I end up with a pile of dead creatures it's very hard to loot all the bodies as the bounding boxes almost completely cover each other making it hard to loot the lower corpses.

    Possibly think of fading out tree tops and branches (not just trees but anything that blocks the view of the character) or auto-zooming in the camera, something so that the view is not obstructed. This means that not only does it fade out of view, but it also doesn't block the interactions. There are several instances in town that interacting with a trunk/chest is very difficult because the wall has become invisible, but it still is blocking the click on the trunk.

    (BTW why did you put beds in the game, and then not allow us to sleep in them? and make us sleep on the floor in front of the fire? ... weird)

    You describe this game as "Fractured is the first open-world sandbox" but you have build stone/rock walls around everything. If you are going to build walls around each area and limit the entrances and exits, it's not open world, you might as well add some load screens in and just slice that area off to a separate server. I know that open world is thrown around a lot and I'm in the ranks of a purist about it. Can I run from one side of the map to the other passing though different areas without a loading screen or some dev created device blocking my progress? in your case the answer is no, so no you don't have an "open world". When you define a path that a player has to follow to move across the map, you've killed the open wold idea. Now I'm not saying that there shouldn't be areas that are harder to access, or mountain ranges that block part of a map, but you all have put a stone wall around everything. So are you going for open world or guided play? make up your mind cause you are saying one thing and doing another.

    The last point: You seem to be trying to make a game that is inclusive to all styles of play. There seems to be a plan so that all ranges of PvP to PvE play are included. It's seems to be a well though out plan, if it can be pulled off. No one gets alienated and everyone gets to play in their comfort zone and maybe swim in some different waters on occasions. Then you turn around and go with point and click movement only.

    Path of Exile is a game I really like. There is very little about it that I don't like, yet for years now I never get that far in it. I quickly find myself looking for something else to play. It was not until I purchased this game that I questioned why. PoE is the only game I keep going back to and keep walking away from and it's the only game I play that is point to click movement only. It's just not comfortable or fun to me. It's a horrid chore when the combat gets good.

    So, after playing this game for 2 days, and now with the knowledge that point to click movement 'just ain't my thing'. I'm left with buyers remorse. I wish I wouldn't of bought this game, but on the good side of it, I guess I learned that if it's anything other than wasd it's not for me.

    I know this is a hot button topic and is decisive. I will stand by this: that point to click is NEITHER GOOD NOR BAD, all points have been made on both sided of the argument and that really doesn't need to be hashed out again. I know for me (now) it's not my style, something I just learned. But why would you create such an inclusive game, and then force players to use a play style they aren't comfortable with? The logic just doesn't seem to sit well with me.

    I like how you seemed to have pay attention to optimization and keeping it clean from the get go, I think that will shine in the end. I like that you all seem to be taking the time to get it right the first time and building a solid base. I know to some of the players it makes the development feel slow and drawn out at this stage, but it makes all the difference in the end. The shiny slick smoothness will come in due time! Keep up the good work.


  • TF#1 - WHISPERER

    The game isn't ready to public testing, and am not sure why they are doing it, it will just put people off the way it is at the moment, i'm going to assume the financial side of things isn't doing so great and this is a way of attracting more people to hopefully raise more.

    It has great potential but it's far too early to see.


  • TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD

    @Listatta It is always nice when people makes so comprehensive feedback like this. It also includes very good points with constructive critisism. I would say to that 'point to click' part, have you tried to move holding down the mouse left button? I play these 'point to click' games 98% of the time that way (if it is possible). It makes the moving much more smoother and keeps you better ongoing.


  • TF#1 - WHISPERER

    @Tuoni Yes I've tried that. Granted this is only the third game I've ever played that is "mouse movement". Blizzard's diablo 3 free trial, which I really don't count as it's too short to be called playing, and PoE which I've tried to play since early 2017...3 years. 3 years of loving a game and walking away from it a week or two after picking it up. I've tried the point and click and the hold and move options for both this game and PoE, neither help.

    And no it's not about the path finding part either. It's not bad, until I get in a stressful situation. It's fine for gathering, it's fine for light combat, but add more than 2 targets and it all goes out the window and I find myself struggling to not reach for the keyboard to dodge right or left or just run away. I guess 15+ years of playing MMOs using the keyboard just can't be untrained.


  • TF#1 - WHISPERER

    @Ryzen I think the game is ready for ALPHA testing. The stuff I pointed out in the beginning is beta stuff and later, the animations and a lot of stuff especially the QoL is not to be taken serious till beta or later.

    But the foundation is important, the server stress testing is HUGELY important to get right now. Getting the launcher and game working on all systems it's intended to work on is important.

    Getting gut checked "are we delivering the game we intended?" is important. Like I pointed out, as I see it, it's not open world, it's themed parked play just without the load screens.

    The part about the walls fading but still blocking interactions is important to figure out now as that is a fundamental part of the isometric view working.

    We as testers need to better educated ourselves as to what alpha and beta releases are, and not get sucked into the lies, hype and promotions of publishers calling Asian ports alpha and betas when the game as been in release in other countries. We need to understand the difference between small and Indy studios and AAAs.

    AAAs studios have in house test teams that are paid to play the game to check for bug, glitches, and balancing. Indy studios don't have access to these kind of teams. So when a AAA releases something on a beta or (the rare alpha) they really aren't doing an alpha or beta, they are doing a gut check to test the popularity of the game they are designing.

    Granted the one thing that MOST of these Indy developers are doing wrong is not publishing focus points with each alpha and beta, so that we as testers don't really know what to watch for and ignore. The Yellow King game is the first I ran across to do this correctly putting a statement up on the log in screen we are currently testing combat, not loot or this or that but this was a while ago and I've not gone back for several weeks. When AAA studios hand something off to be tested they hand it off to a specific team with a specific focus, maybe is it the combat, or balance, or what ever, it maybe the specifics of do each of these weapons work on this specific hit-box and animation? I think why most Indy devs don't do this is they just don't know to do it and are scared of limiting feed back and bug reports, but in the end they get the crap beat of of them because most people don't understand and just call the game unplayable.

    Alpha is never meant to be a playable game, it's meant to test foundations and ideas. Beta is more of a playable game, but expect major game breaking bugs with polishing starting to happen.


  • TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD

    @Listatta a very detailled and well written Report. I like it if people take the time to write down their experience to help the Devs to find problems with their design.

    It is a bit sad, that you don't feel thats a game for you, but probably it will change with time.
    You said, you are playing PoE since 2017, that means, you stepped into it, when it was already well polished and smooth.
    When i saw it first time (did not played it at this state, but a friend showed it to me) it was still in an kind of Alpha state and it wasn't that enjoyable like it is now, graphic wise, stability wise, handling wise... so i guess there are hopes for Fractured for you 😉


  • TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD

    I have to say that zoning areas with miles of walls bothered me as well and I think there should be much more freedom to explore and move around.


  • TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD

    @Tuoni said in First Play Reactions (a note to the devs):

    I have to say that zoning areas with miles of walls bothered me as well and I think there should be much more freedom to explore and move around.

    *pssst* there is this one special skill from Wisps, the small ridges are not a problem anymore with it 😉



  • @Kralith
    doesn't change the fact that they're obnoxiously long though.


  • TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD

    @Zori said in First Play Reactions (a note to the devs):

    @Kralith
    doesn't change the fact that they're obnoxiously long though.

    True, it does not. Those are almost comparable to invisible walls what some MMOs use to restrict the moving to special areas, not equally bad but still close enough.



  • @Tuoni
    Essentially it is, even if you look at the mini map to plan your route, you'd be surprised at the amount of blocks you'd get.

    I don't think that getting a special skill from a wisp should be necessary to be able to overcome some of these issues. There are some 'mountain ranges' that should be easily scaled yet you cannot get to it unless you go around.


  • TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD

    @Zori I agree. Special abilities should not be a solution for design issues. There is nothing wrong to restrict some of the areas but doing that too much will be away from the open world experience and idea of seamless world. Moreover, creating miles of copy paste stonewalls or cliffs does not look that good either, therefore, it is a visual problem as well.


  • TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD

    Hmm i do not know why you think about limiting us or making copy&paste design.
    If you go along a ridge in real World or even a big Mountain, you are also not able to just easy jump up/down or cross it.
    Yeah in modern world it is easier, but think about the romans, who wanted to go over the Alps to reach Europe north of them.
    They needed months to find/build a way for all the military troops.
    Mostly people had to go around it and find a path. Or use some Abilities&Tools.
    Do you know, if there will be not other possibilities to jump/climb over these ridges later on?
    I also never had a real problem to find the next path of the ridges, you even see them on the Map.

    None Ridges or Mountains feeled for me like copy&paste. @Tuoni

    To make every 10 Meters a path through them, would feel for me way more copy&paste, and boring to remove them all and just to have a flat-everywhere-to-walk-without-hurdles-map.

    And yeah, i would like if we would be able to climb Mountains in one or another way, to find a special hidden treasure on top of them.
    But i doubt the game design is made for this.



  • @Tuoni Ironically the really long ridges that you need to follow to get around a mountain makes it feel like things are just barren waste lands that feels really bare.

    I don't mind the mountainous terrain but if there's only one linear path to overcome the obstructive long ridges, then it does get quite tiresome.


  • TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD

    @Kralith I think you missed the actual point. Regardless how the wall is implemented it is there creating a kind of zone and not offering seamless open world experience, and that is the main problem. On top of that the current implementation, especially the stonewall, does not look that good either. Therefore, there should not be paths every 10 meters because there should not be that wall at first place. Of course it is okay to have some obstacles blocking the access to certain areas but less would offer much better gaming experience for players, at least from exploring point of view.


  • TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD

    @Zori said in First Play Reactions (a note to the devs):

    @Tuoni Ironically the really long ridges that you need to follow to get around a mountain makes it feel like things are just barren waste lands that feels really bare.

    I don't mind the mountainous terrain but if there's only one linear path to overcome the obstructive long ridges, then it does get quite tiresome.

    Open world games should avoid linear environment design as much as possible and goal for freedom of traveling and exploration instead. I run along with that wall sometime and then I turned back because I was not sure when it is going to end or if ever. 😉



  • @Kralith
    "think about the romans, who wanted to go over the Alps to reach Europe north of them."
    Hannibal Crosses the Alps with Elephants -
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hannibal's_crossing_of_the_Alps

    "If you go along a ridge in real World or even a big Mountain, you are also not able to just easy jump up/down or cross it."
    But if we're talking about realism, then why do I have to kill a wisp to learn its skill and overcome a ridge that's practically just 7ft tall?

    But the point of the discussion was, the long ridges weren't designed thoughtfully. While impassable mountain ridges do exist in real life, they do offer some variance in the way that they're naturally designed. i.e; varying height, varying levels of ruggedness and weathering.

    The design here feels to 'linear', it's almost as if there was a ruler used to draw the impassable line.

    "To make every 10 Meters a path through them, would feel for me way more copy&paste, and boring to remove them all and just to have a flat-everywhere-to-walk-without-hurdles-map."

    And I don't think that was the point or the suggestion at all. The point that was being made was that the way that the 'invisible' wall was designed felt too linear and -for the sake of realism- seemed unnatural, therefore it didn't have an authentic feel to it.



  • @Tuoni I'd often observe the mini map, to plan a route that I want to follow and be surprised that the 'passable' looking thing on the map is actually not passable at all, therefore i'd need to keep going to get around the ridge, even though some 'small hills' looked like they were only 7-8ft tall that practically looks smooth and easily passable, you'd still have to go around it.


  • TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD

    @Zori said in First Play Reactions (a note to the devs):

    The design here feels to 'linear', it's almost as if there was a ruler used to draw the impassable line.

    For sure it is not hand drawn, but generated.
    There can be much more graphical improvement at this ridges and cliffs in future.

    As for the features to cross these borders, i can imagine to have skills for climbing or using ropes or whatever.
    Well, i am going with you, that i would like to climb up mountains, because i love to find path up to them and walk on them.
    I guess that point i made you missed. 😉


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