Tripwire Interactive Community Report (TICR) November 2020 Edition

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Welcome to the new and improved Tripwire Interactive Community Report, also known as 'The TICR' for short. Keep watching for updates about Killing Floor 2, Maneater and Rising Storm 2: Vietnam. Then stick around for a fan Q&A segment with Tripwire's own Alan Wilson and read more answers from him and David Amata here in the thread below! Click below to skip ahead to the news you want to hear!

In the runup to the TICR we asked our community to submit their burning questions in the official forums. We’ve gone ahead and gathered those up and sourced answers to them. Have a question yourself, check out the guidelines in the forums and keep an eye out for the next call!

Joining me once again to help answer these questions are Alan Wilson, VP of Tripwire Interactive and David Amata, Product Director here at Tripwire.

The first question comes from Zacker
With the influx of new players in RS2, could you clarify your position on implementing a true QoL update that will extend the life of the game? e.g. working queue system so that community funded servers don't get mini-DDOS, balancing (tickets, wonky combat areas and glitch spots) some of the Vanilla maps, TL abilities not breaking mid-map..... Given that Tripwire started once again doing some work on RS2 with the port to EGS, why have you not attempted to engage with the wider community in order to solve some of these bugs or balancing Vanilla maps? What internal and external actions do you believe would have avoided some of the chaos induced during the EGS release? What do you think are the biggest "lessons learned"?


Let me try and answer some of those questions. We are aiming to do another QoL update, but the big question is what can we realistically get done in it? As soon as we start messing around with maps, changing gameplay, QA becomes a big factor - ensuring that we haven’t created more trouble than it’s worth. So, most likely, it will be relatively simple code pieces that get addressed. If you want to influence what we have a go at, tell us via the forums.

On the EGS release - simply put, we had an external team that was not experienced with Vietnam doing the work, plus the bulk of the QA. main lesson learned is that it really does take a decent amount of experienced Tripwire dev time (especially QA), which we simply don’t have available at the moment. That’s the major “rate-limiting step”.

Our next set of questions are about Killing Floor 2, so I’ll sling over towards you David. From rockit!
Are any of talked about system overhauls/features for KF2, like fleshing out weapon upgrades, a real survivalist rework, a new perk, or other large scale QoL improvements that are still planned or being worked on at all? Or are they just a lot of ideas that have too large of a scope to fit into KF2's current development cycle? Maybe planned for a future title...?


Quality of Life updates for Killing Floor 2 are still an essential part of what we hope to target with each seasonal update but we need to be very judicious and targeted with what we adjust and change at this point in the game’s life cycle which some players have been playing for over 5 years now.

While we certainly hear the community’s feedback on wanting some big systemic changes to KF2 from system overhauls, survivalist reworks, new perks,and we ourselves looked deeply at it internally about different approaches, it's not really in the cards for the future at this stage with the resources within the team while still being able to accomplish the fundamentals within each update that most players expect.

To put it another way, Killing Floor 2 is an extremely well understood and well oiled machine and some of those asks are akin to pulling out and replacing a car engine while it's still barreling down a highway.

s5yn3t asks
Does Objective mode have a future?. Will we see any new additions to it? (Maps, maybe actually more interesting objectives rather than the usual protect, escort, weld and PULL DA LEVER, KRONK!)

Objective Mode was a huge initiative for us last year and easily took us the better part of 8 months to ship back in the Summer 2019 which we had already started the objective maps within production for the Halloween and December update that year prior to releasing. Our objective for Objective Mode was to build upon the systems we had in place and had been steadily integrating into Survival with maps like Krampus Lair, Airship, and Santa’s Workshop and put within a more cohesive, episodic narrative focus that could be cleanly separated from the survival experience.

What we ended up seeing is that the community really wanted to see a full story campaign mode whose scope goes beyond the means of a quarterly cadence we have for Killing Floor 2.

To be fully candid, when we started looking at the analytics of what players were playing consistently we didn’t see the adoption rate we would have liked that made the much higher cost of making an Objective vs. a standard Survival map worth doubling down on for KF2 so at this stage we’ve pivoted back to earlier framework for maps that provide the best replay value for the fans.

And a question about modding from one of our KF community modders GearShift
Are we going to get any more modding support updates for KF2, such as fixing the audio file issues and getting the inhouse IK Animation rigs?

Modding is a vital part of Killing Floor 2 and what keeps the game alive beyond what we are ourselves are able to create so on a case by case basis we’ll certainly take a look at what makes sense to add or fix as a form of Quality of Life update with the seasonal updates. I wouldn’t expect many new tools to be available in the future but its reasonable for there to be some polish and fixes if it's within scope.

We also have another general studio questions. From Lemonater47
How does Tripwire feel about Unreal 5? Insane polycounts, no normal maps, extreme draw distances, a new physics system and all of it running on a PS5. Almost doesn’t seem possible to me.

What we all saw in that Unreal Engine 5 demo was very impressive and if it all works as they described I think it has the possibility to streamline a lot of production processes and make development much more efficient. We are very excited to get our hands on the engine when it becomes available next year and see what it's capable of and how it can be leveraged for future projects that we have on tap in the coming years.

I want to once again thank everyone who submitted a question, and Alan and David for taking the time to help me source these answers. Be sure to let us know if you enjoyed these written answers as well as video answers, or would prefer just video answers moving ahead. One thing to keep in mind is we will likely be able to answer less questions if they are all video (We love to hear Alan go on for 30 minutes on one topic as much as everyone else, but we have to limit our time making these somehow)!
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Some written answers are ok, but i would like to see more video answers.

Also i would like to suggest a "kill of the month" segment. Where you show of a community made clip with the best kill in Tripwire games. My November nomination for RS2 Vietnam would be:

Reddit video clip

Keep up the good work, and don't get Corona...
it's not really in the cards for the future at this stage with the resources within the team while still being able to accomplish the fundamentals within each update that most players expect.
i think this is why most people are saying that they'd prefer if there wasn't what they expected, that most would forego any and all content such as new weapons, cosmetics, and maps if it meant getting a bigger QoL update.
Your words here are doing quite a bit of assumptions on behalf of the people you are assuming for.
That's kind of a non-answer too... I mean, you probably see that some of us have been commenting on the forums for years now. And there are certainly more people than @LolzMan1325 and myself who think so.

You obviously couldn't know that at the time you wrote that answer, but the feedback you got regarding the roadmap for 2021 should show you that it's far from a lone request. And while I cannot say if we are numerous, I can however assure you that all the people who asked for it are veterans. Now would you follow the legions of Steam players who may not know better, or the actual people taking the time to dissect everything you do and proper meaningful changes, tweaks, ideas and balancing?

I know that as a Community Manager, you obviously can't be everywhere and you can't tell people to "suck it off". But by diverting the topic each and everytime it's brought up, you're merely proving our points.

Easy to blame the players for being never satisfied eh?
I like to think myself, and the community team as a whole, is generally aware of the various segments of the community and their ongoing sentiments about the game. It is part of our job to monitor this and pass it along to the rest of the team to help inform their decisions. Sadly there is no perfect way or magical tool to perfectly help capture this, and much if it is constant monitoring of what players are chatting about and in what volume (both in terms of messages, and how many players are behind those messages. IE: 5 people generating 5k posts, or 5k people generating 5k posts read very differently).

The game stakeholders then combine that with their own plans which are generated off of current goals and past data showing how players have interacted with the game (to help predict future interactions) and adjust plans as they feel is best.

However hyperbole about speaking for "everyone" does not help a cause in the slightest.
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