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Author Topic: Communication about releases & future plans  (Read 2701 times)

Offline AdamH

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Communication about releases & future plans
« on: 19 January 2017, 01:21:35 pm »
When are we going to have all of the cards implemented? This includes fixing all of the cards that require you to name a card since they're unplayable at this point, and we need a way to view the Journey Token at any time.

The software was released almost three weeks ago and at a bare minimum it should have been completely implemented by that point: this isn't even the top priority.

New releases are getting less frequent and this doesn't appear to be on anyone's radar. I kind of doubt this is ever going to be finished at this point.

Offline Lotoreo

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #1 on: 19 January 2017, 02:51:12 pm »
I would assume that you got that the wrong way around.
I guess that fewer small releases are just a hint that a bigger release is upcomeing.


(But then again, with all the negative energy you are spreading, I would understand them not finishing the game. But that is out of topic.)

Offline AdamH

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #2 on: 19 January 2017, 03:00:06 pm »
I will admit that my "negative energy" is comparatively negative to a lot of what is being spread around here. I'll just say that I think a lot of people are being overly optimistic. I'm only going off of what I have, which is the released software, which doesn't fully implement the game, and the fact that all of these updates have been made to features that really should be less important.

All someone needs to say is "yes we have a bigger release coming up" -- instead all I've heard is "I don't like your tone/energy Adam". It's text, I have typed words that express thoughts and nothing more, and asked a legitimate question. Instead of giving me an actual response to my question I have people complaining about what's in between the words I've typed.

So is there a bigger release coming up?

Offline Ingix

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #3 on: 19 January 2017, 03:51:12 pm »
I'm with Adam that communication of what's to come is suboptimal. For example, the sticky post "Missing Features" from Stef in "Feature Requests" is from December 10th, that is a time when the game was still in beta. The major complaints now might warrant a different prioritization than what was given at that time. Players probably also don't care that much about what's coming this year. They might care more about what's coming next week and/or next month.

Unfortunately there are so many different problems at the moment (mobile client, log problems, UI problems for different cards, no (visible) ratings, AI doing 'stupid' things with certain cards, standalone version) that I assume any progress will only affect one are two areas, and players who are not concerned with those areas will see no progress (a player playing against AI will not care that much about a rating, and a player playing against humans will not care about AI improvements, for example).


So I still hope for improvements, but I'm less optimistic about the game getting better soon than I was a week or two before.



Offline yed

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #4 on: 19 January 2017, 04:42:14 pm »
Stef on Discord Today at 12:45 AM #general-chatter (https://discord.gg/BJZ62hZ):
Quote
currently we're working on building a rating system, and providing a way for people to look at old logs

Offline JunkDealer

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #5 on: 19 January 2017, 05:02:28 pm »
Stef on Discord Today at 12:45 AM #general-chatter (https://discord.gg/BJZ62hZ):
Quote
currently we're working on building a rating system, and providing a way for people to look at old logs

I find it interesting that basically the same discussion that I was involved with on discord broke out here.  I don't know if the preceding posts were because of the discussion I had on discord or if it's just a weird coincidence that they took place at roughly the same time.  I wasn't going to post it here, but since yed only provided part of the conversation I now feel the full context could be useful to some of the people posting in the forum who might not see the discord discussion.  If for no other reason then to prevent duplication of messages (another area I feel this forum could use help with... strong moderators that merge/link/lock duplicate conversations, but I digress...)

Anyhow, here is the full text of the conversation.  I've put it in code blocks since it is somewhat lengthy.  I note that at one point Stef indicated that they won't commit to schedules "at least not yet" so I am hopeful that they may at some point understand and accept that some customers want to be kept well informed and that doing so while more work also prevents other work. (like responding to these types of comments over and over)


Code: [Select]
LaLight - Yesterday at 4:25 PM
well.. we will definitely improve the bot. Just not right now. He sometimes is not as bad as it seems ;)

JunkDealer - Yesterday at 4:26 PM
Oh for sure.  I've been beaten several times.  Usually because I'm focussed on my own stuff and don't realize they've jumped into points mode until too late.  I blame part of that on the lack of visual and audio clues that I grew used to with the MF version.  Retraining myself to actually look at the logs, which to me is time consuming and unideal, but it is what it is.
Improvements are coming and I appreciate that.  I just wish they were a bit faster coming.  Again I think that stems from thinking much of what I was expecting was going to be ready at launch.  I was quite surprised at the stuff not delivered at that point.
Don't get me wrong.  There's a lot of potential here, just wasn't where my expectations were sitting so I'm having to reframe things.  I'd encourage you all to keep providing information.  ie) Control the message.  The reality is in the absence of information people create misinformation.  Ideally I'd love to see actually ETA dates on the features list so that people at least have a vague idea of when things are coming.  If dates need to be adjusted then explain that and adjust them, but for me at least, having no dates is worse.

Stef - Yesterday at 4:36 PM
sorry if you feel that way, but we won't commit to schedules
at least not right now

JunkDealer - Yesterday at 4:41 PM
I think that's a mistake.  Again I'm not asking for commitments, but forecasts.  It's disappointing to hear that you know there are issues and features, but not provide even rough guidance (aside from sometime in 2017) for stuff that again perhaps mistakenly people thought would be there at launch.  That's what I mean about controlling the message.  I think a lot of frustrations expressed can be countered with well placed dialogue.  Absence of that always causes the crazies (like me) to assume the worst.  Ultimately though it's your company and that's just my opinion, but it's one that I've expressed to many companies.  Take 7 Wonders for example that's been in beta almost 2 years with no communication.  Or Nancy Drew who has had their latest game in development with almost no communication for 2 years.  In both of those cases you have loyal people literally switching to trash talking.  The more information you provide the more you placate people like me.  Knowing that you are currently working on x and forecast it to be ready by y.  Then knowing you hit roadblock z and have to shift the forecast to a tells me that you care about me as a customer.  Silence does the opposite.  Anyhow, thanks for listening and responding.  I do appreciate the hard work you are doing.
func_door - Yesterday at 4:45 PM
there's a balance to be made in placating people with communication and communicating things that may not end up being accurate

Stef - Yesterday at 4:45 PM
but... we're not silent at all
currently we're working on building a rating system, and providing a way for people to look at old logs
we've also been quite descriptive of the progress made the first 20 days of this year
it's just... I enjoy making new stuff a lot more then talking about why/what/when is coming
and especially why what isn't there yet
you're just turning 20 days into 2 years now... that seems a bit premature

Philip - Yesterday at 4:47 PM
" The more information you provide the more you placate people like me. Knowing that you are currently working on x and forecast it to be ready by y. Then knowing you hit roadblock z and have to shift the forecast to a tells me that you care about me as a customer."

My take: That is a lot of work. And the time we spend doing that is time we can't spend coding. In the end it's far better to promise little and deliver a lot than the other way around.
Stef - Yesterday at 4:47 PM
very possibly your expectations of what would be finished at launch would have been very realistic if most of the money that users spend on Dominion in the past years would have ended up with us. But alack, it did not.

JunkDealer - Yesterday at 4:50 PM
Except that in my mind what was promised at launch wasn't delivered and that does translate into more than just 20 days.  Since what I was expecting at launch wasn't there I then forecast that out to your list of priorities and have to wonder if you'll even get those done in 2017.  This is my point.  Without information people like me fill there head based on prior experience.  It's not uncommon for software companies to miss deadlines (by a lot).... but whenever those misses are communicated they are impacted by negative press and thoughts a lot less.  You seem to have a pretty loyal following I wouldn't be surprised if some of them wouldn't be willing to help you communicate more.
Again I realize that perhaps my expectations of the launch were completely unrealistic, but there was nothing obvious that helped me frame them better.  Managing people's expectations helps manage frustrations and complaints.  That's what communication is all about.  Yes, it's a pain and takes away from what you really want to do, but that's what differentiates good companies from great companies.  They control their message.  Anyhow.... I'm probably not changing any minds here so again appreciate you listening and responding.  Keep up the hard work!

Stef - Yesterday at 4:55 PM
I think the best thing we can do is just show progress
if we manage that, people will assume progress will continue
and rightfully so
that would beat any amount of promisses & ETAs

JunkDealer - Yesterday at 4:57 PM
AGain I disagree.  The progress you've made in the last 20 days isn't insignificant, but I haven't seen anything of substance (no offense meant.... bugs are exceptionally time consuming).  Forecasts help frame expectations.  Right now you have no frame for people to judge against except the initial launch.... but here I am circling back to my original expectations blah blah blah..... :smiley:

Stef - Yesterday at 4:59 PM
Let's just both hope you'll be positively surprised 3 months from now

JunkDealer - Yesterday at 5:01 PM
I'm hoping so too. :smiley:
Best of luck!

Offline tufftaeh

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #6 on: 19 January 2017, 06:18:28 pm »
I will admit that my "negative energy" is comparatively negative to a lot of what is being spread around here. I'll just say that I think a lot of people are being overly optimistic. I'm only going off of what I have, which is the released software, which doesn't fully implement the game, and the fact that all of these updates have been made to features that really should be less important.
I totally understand that you wish that the issues which are most important for you personally should be fixed first. I don't care that much either about platforms that I don't play on, and as I got my transfer mail without any problem and as could pay in the Store, fixing all this was not important for me. It might be slightly different from the point of view of the company offering this online implementation. They need to try to make as many users as happy as possible and set their priorities accordingly, which might result in a different sequence from the one you and I might prefer. By the way, I, personally, feel that making the lobby usable (if still not great) was more important than Inheritance and Stash. But now I think that fixing the naming issue should be indeed one of the top priorities.

All someone needs to say is "yes we have a bigger release coming up" -- instead all I've heard is "I don't like your tone/energy Adam". It's text, I have typed words that express thoughts and nothing more, and asked a legitimate question. Instead of giving me an actual response to my question I have people complaining about what's in between the words I've typed.
I believe the people expressing discomfort with the way you express your demands are not the same people who actually work on the software. Which (I think) is actually a good thing because the latter spend their time for something which helps more users than comforting you by answering all your posts.

So is there a bigger release coming up?
I don't know what you would deem a bigger release. I suggest that you post a list of the things you would like to have fixed/changed, ordered by priority. That might really help (especially if multiple users do it) for priorization.

Offline AdamH

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #7 on: 19 January 2017, 07:19:37 pm »
It seems the developers are willing to communicate with their customers on the discord channel. That requires an account to even view, doesn't it? These forums are publicly viewable. If you're going to take the time to communicate with your customers, it seems smart to make that available to view publicly.

I'm not going to join that Discord channel, I shouldn't have to in order to hear from the people making this product.

JunkDealer makes a lot of good points in that chat and they are dismissed for some pretty bad reasons.

1. I sympathize with the idea that time spent talking about your work is time that could be spent actually doing that work. I am the technical lead on my project at work and I spend a lot of time doing exactly that and I hate it. Unfortunately, I can't just blow that off because I have a manager who I need to report to. After several months it's gotten down to a weekly status E-mail I have to send (10 minutes), a bi-weekly status meeting in-person (30 minutes), plus a higher-level weekly meeting that is super-boring but I really do need to be there (60 minutes). I spend roughly 85 minutes each week talking about my work, and I have to factor that into my estimates on how long each task is going to take to complete. It's really annoying.

The fact that your entire company is just two people and you don't have a manager bothering you for status 85 minutes every week makes it much more important that you take the initiative to do this yourself. You can have someone type up your status in a pretty way and answer customer questions to help with it, but this is part of the process and if you ignore it, people are going to not use your product when they otherwise would have. This directly translates to money in your pocket, and you're basically turning it down because you don't want to be bothered to talk to your customers.

2. I get the "under-promise, over-deliver" thing too. I do that all the time, it's a necessary part of the process. That's not what you're doing. Right now you are not promising anything at all. It's not "don't promise" it's "under-promise". A response to my first message could have been "we're working on these things, a release is coming up" and that would have been enough, and it promises hardly anything. (Instead I got a PM saying how my question wasn't constructive, I'm guessing because I didn't sugar-coat it enough, or something?)

"Let's just both hope you'll be positively surprised 3 months from now" is not going to make anyone feel better. Right now, Shuffleit has a 100% rate of unpleasant surprises because it was promised that all cards from all expansions would be playable and here were are three weeks later without Stash or Inheritance implemented yet, as well as "name a card" not working properly with no workaround, plus no way to view the Journey token. Every day that goes by without this promise fulfilled drives the point home further that Shuffleit can't even live up to the one promise it has made.

The message that comes across without any further communication is that there was one promise made, and it didn't happen, and now there are no further promises or anything else. What reason is there to think that things will actually get done? What reason does anyone have to believe that we will be pleasantly surprised in three months?

The way to build that trust is to make some promises and then keep them, not to go hide in a corner and say nothing. They can be easy promises like "we plan to make a release in a week" (and don't even promise any features) or "we hope to have this feature completed in a month" (when it's really two days away and in final testing). If you think you'll have all of the cards completed and ready to release a month from today, just tell me it should be done within 3 months or something, that's how you pleasantly surprise me -- you have to set an expectation to exceed. Saying nothing for a month and then surprise! It's done! is not a pleasant surprise, unless you count the surprise as "we did something instead of absolutely nothing."

PPE:

I totally understand that you wish that the issues which are most important for you personally should be fixed first.

There are issues that are more important to me than fixing/implementing cards. I'm harping on this because as I mentioned above, we were led to believe all the cards would work at release and they don't.

I believe the people expressing discomfort with the way you express your demands are not the same people who actually work on the software. Which (I think) is actually a good thing because the latter spend their time for something which helps more users than comforting you by answering all your posts.

I actually go into this at length above. It's important that they spend some time giving status, but also Stef sent me a PM expressing his discomfort anyways. It was worded politely enough but did not answer any of the actual concerns I had. Whoops.

So is there a bigger release coming up?
I don't know what you would deem a bigger release.

These are Lotoreo's words, you'd have to ask him -- he speculated that there may be a "bigger release" coming up and the natural question that follows is "so is that actually going to happen?"

I'm not going to try and tell the developers how to prioritize the features they want to implement, though. It's not my place to do that.

Offline faust

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #8 on: 19 January 2017, 07:56:45 pm »
It seems the developers are willing to communicate with their customers on the discord channel. That requires an account to even view, doesn't it? These forums are publicly viewable. If you're going to take the time to communicate with your customers, it seems smart to make that available to view publicly.
I also hear that they're going to a pub each Wednesday where sometimes they talk about things vaguely related to their company. I demand a live stream immediately!

Offline Titandrake

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #9 on: 20 January 2017, 03:47:59 am »
It seems the developers are willing to communicate with their customers on the discord channel. That requires an account to even view, doesn't it? These forums are publicly viewable. If you're going to take the time to communicate with your customers, it seems smart to make that available to view publicly.
I also hear that they're going to a pub each Wednesday where sometimes they talk about things vaguely related to their company. I demand a live stream immediately!

Come on that's just blatantly silly.

I hope this is obvious to people, but:
  • Making fun of a point doesn't stop it from being a point.
  • Setting up a strawman and knocking it down doesn't address their point.
  • Disapproving of the way someone's making a point doesn't address their point either. (But on occasion it lets you decide whose point is worth addressing.)

Personally I don't care about Stash or Inheritance that much, because of all the shiny Empires cards, but they do need to be in the game at some point. It should be obvious to everybody that they're working on it. I do wish there was more transparent customer service / addressing of complaints but it's tricky to do this well when there are a ton of things to do. See Pokemon Go launch for an example of this.

Online Philip

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #10 on: 20 January 2017, 08:19:07 am »
I do wish there was more transparent customer service / addressing of complaints but it's tricky to do this well when there are a ton of things to do. See Pokemon Go launch for an example of this.

I'm not sure what you mean by "more transparent customer service", but most of the customer service we do is helping individual people with their individual issues (which can be account transfers, email trouble, payment problems, connection issues or any of a large number of other things). This happens mostly through these people contacting us via e-mail, on discord or pms on this forum. Only a tiny fraction of these matters are ever seen by the public eye, and out of respect for our customers' privacy we certainly intend to keep it that way.

If you mean that you'd like to see us more involved in these sort of meta debates, then I have to disappoint you. Engaging in internet debates is a huge time sink that we can't afford, and I don't see any pertinent issues raised in this thread besides the reiteration of requests for things that are already firmly in our plans.

I assume any progress will only affect one are two areas, and players who are not concerned with those areas will see no progress

The one thing I do want to add is that this is the unfortunate reality. Up to two days ago a number of people couldn't connect at all due to proxy/firewall issues. The solution to this took quite a bit work from our side because it had to be integrated with the server design that allows us to push updates without interrupting any running games. To those that could connect just fine this will appear irrelevant, but it's a big step nonetheless. The Russian translation we released alongside it was another huge update, but it's again something that is of no immediate benefit to someone speaking English.

Fortunately with 11 releases in our first 19 days there's already a good track-record of frequent updates that people waiting for a particular feature can look at with hope. Just also understand that there are thousands of other concerns we have to take into account in addition to someone's personal desire to swiftly play with Stash.

Offline Titandrake

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #11 on: 20 January 2017, 08:51:53 am »
By more transparent customer service, I meant making it more clear that work is being done. Of course it's obvious that work is being done, but when people are angry it's easy for them to forget that work is being done on problems they don't personally have.

I'm not interested in seeing involvement in meta debates because I agree that's not particularly useful, especially when people are re-iterating the same points. I'm more interested in seeing posts like the one you just made. "Here's a problem that was affecting our users, we rolled out a fix without disrupting everything, we added language support, when the fires aren't as big we'll work on the remaining cards." I know there's a releases thread listing a changelog, but not that many people are going to click from the game through the forum link all the way to that thread. If you have bandwidth I'd consider thinking about ways to make those changes more visible.

Offline ravi

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #12 on: 20 January 2017, 11:19:52 am »
Engaging in internet debates is a huge time sink that we can't afford, and I don't see any pertinent issues raised in this thread besides the reiteration of requests for things that are already firmly in our plans.

I think your "plans" that you link here are kind of an issue. This list is very vague and difficult to really interpret what it means. "Finish implementing cards" for example, could just mean getting Inheritance and Stash online. However, there are a number of cards that don't work completely yet (naming cards that aren't in the supply, or that are part of split piles but not the top of that split pile, for example) and fixing those cards does not seem to be part of your plans, unless that falls under the umbrella of "Finish implementing cards". Other issues like the fact that you can barely see cards when using Scheme or Harbinger are also really important but don't seem to exist in your plans.

Further you have an item called "Card animations: animating all card moves". Now, that is one aspect of a bigger project which I feel is super important: the ability to play the game without the log. Seeing all animations is one thing, but improvements to the mats and the trash are really important and according to your plans these are not a priority at all. This also includes things like better notice of duration attacks like enchantress, swamp hag and haunted woods.

I am guessing that the things I mention above actually are on your radar and are actual priorities but our only way to know what you are addressing is that list. I think this is what some people mean by transparency. It would be nice to see what your priorities are, and if they are simply what you have put in your list of missing features, then we may conclude that these things are less important than, say, autoplay features and a logsearch.

Most of your boards have a "known issues" section. However, the "Interface Issues" Board does not. I think a lot of things could be made more clear if you had a "Interface Improvements" sticky where you let us know the interface things you are working on. Especially since some of these issues are subjective with different ideas on how to solve them, this would be helpful. Like, it would be good to know if you are happy with the current Tavern Mat solution, or if it is a priority for you to make a better one. If you are happy with it, then that leaves room for users to complain about it, if you are planning to improve it and have it in that sticky then users need not continue to complain because they know it is something you are already convinced needs improving.

Personally, I have plenty of faith in you guys (overly optimistic) that you are improving these things. I am happy with how the client is going, and enjoy playing on it. It would just be a bit more reassuring to know which aspects of the interface (including things like the lobby, a proper user manual, etc. that I have not even mentioned yet) are in your priority list.

Offline Bbl

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #13 on: 20 January 2017, 11:52:49 am »
Nobody here asks for engagement in Internet debates. Frankly, the time invested in commenting this topic, could have been used better for writing a monthly 'State of development' entry, giving a preview of what to expect for the next four weeks, what topics are being worked on, which topics you will start looking into, and where there is currently no clear solution in sight. Be honest and talk about things in sight, and nobody will beat you for it. Make it a sticky in the 'Announcements' section, for everyone to read, and then let the discussion go as it goes - I doubt that this is harder than to micromanage all the rumors caused by the current insecurity.

When you refer to the 'Missing Feature' List, there are a couple of problems with it:
1) It is not adhered to. Adding the Russian language support for instance is at priority number 5 - and here it is now, probably creating new bugs in need of fixing, delaying priority 1-4 topics further. If you have one priority list, and it is not adhered to - why should I as a customer trust it?

I want to stress out, that it is totally normal that these kind of lists change, depending on the feedback that pops up, how easy one feature is to implement, urgent problems, etc. But this is, why you should not make such a uncommented, numbered lists in the first place, but rather talk about the things you know and which you are currently working on. You can mention the missing features (to give an idea of the 'finished' product you strive for), but I think it should be simply a list of bullet points without numbers and a couple of caveats attached to it. This should not be your primary tool for communication.

2) It is overpromising: By setting the timeframe to 'somewhere 2017' you promise features, you have not even started working on - you have no idea how complicated these will turn out to be. Looking at this list and the current speed of development, I feel that the bottom priorities are already quite ambitious for 2017. Remember when you#v made a similar statement back in 2016 (Offline Mode, all Cards on time, etc.)? These are the promises that come back to haunt you. Compare this to a statement like, i.e. that you expect to open the ports at the end of January, solving the Proxy problem. Here you can speak with confidence and caution, and still surprise positively, if the feature comes earlier. And if its really more complicated and it gets delayed, in the monthly update post you can give reasons and no sane person will challenge it.

3) It is underpromising: As mentioned before: Saying 'At some very distant day in the future that we cannot name, we will achieve all the things we like', is nothing to evoke trust or expectations for a 'positive' surprise. You are setting yourself a bar so low, that (in theory) you cannot fail, but you will not get applause (and trust) for it either. And worse, due to problem 2), odds are goods, that you will miss even this 'low' bar at least partially, opening the flood gates for derision and flaming.

4) It is vague : As pointed out by Ravi, it is extremely vague and can mean a lot of things. This is a logical result of reaching out way to far into the future, as mentioned above. I am pretty sure, your roadmap for the next 4 weeks would look far more accurate & detailed.

Having worked with online communities before, I can say that you have an extremely polite and constructive community at your hands. I think with a a little bit of time investment for 'macro' communication (Announcements, Dev Diary, etc), you can save yourself quite some time of 'micro' communication (Forum Discussions, Discord, PMs, etc.), as the community will help to adress these, if they know your trail of thought.

From my work experience, what works best with Internet communities is
a) Honesty & communication on all the things you DO know (including, most importantly, acknowledgment of things you do not know)
b) Regularity - If you know, there will be a blog post every first Thursday of the month, the pressure for a feedback on any given topic will decrease
c) ONE clear channel of communication, accessible for all users (i.e. a sticky post in the Announcement section)

Offline AdamH

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Re: Communication about releases & future plans
« Reply #14 on: 20 January 2017, 01:27:37 pm »
The one thing I do want to add is that this is the unfortunate reality. Up to two days ago a number of people couldn't connect at all due to proxy/firewall issues. The solution to this took quite a bit work from our side because it had to be integrated with the server design that allows us to push updates without interrupting any running games. To those that could connect just fine this will appear irrelevant, but it's a big step nonetheless. The Russian translation we released alongside it was another huge update, but it's again something that is of no immediate benefit to someone speaking English.

Fortunately with 11 releases in our first 19 days there's already a good track-record of frequent updates that people waiting for a particular feature can look at with hope. Just also understand that there are thousands of other concerns we have to take into account in addition to someone's personal desire to swiftly play with Stash.

I just want to say that in spite of the fact that some people think you should have been working instead of typing this message, and as silly as it might have felt for you to type it, this is exactly the kind of thing I think should be happening more. With the exception of the phrase that I bolded, this perfectly responds to my concerns (and the concerns of people like me).

I wish that this particular statement was more visible. I strongly suggest that you copy paste it (again without the bolded part) into the announcements forum.

Without communication like this, users that aren't affected by the issues you're working on will see a gap between updates and no commentary about it, and they will not understand what you've been doing. The natural (and completely valid) assumption to make is that you are sitting around playing WoW or something instead of working on Dominion. I really wish you guys would stop trying to justify not having public communication like this, there really is no substitute for it and you really, really need it. There are plenty of very loyal people around here who will take a 15-second comment you make and turn it into something like this so you can focus on your work.

What is my problem with the bolded part? Well it cheapens a real concern that your users have. There's no reason to do that.