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Sharp decline in Official Responses from Epic throughout the community.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by DanielW View Post
    * Not my area of expertise (I work on lighting and shadowing)
    While you're here, why directional light doesn't support Lux yet?

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  • replied
    Just want to clarify - I'm sharing my experience as an engine programmer with very limited time. We do have dedicated support staff who are extremely active in these forums and AnswerHub!

    Thanks for all your responses. It's good to have a dialog about this =)

    Leave a comment:


  • replied
    Originally posted by DanielW View Post
    As an engineer, providing support on these forums is not in any way required by Epic, and I handle a lot of support from other sources that is part of my job (UDN, internal projects). I'm only here because I care about improving the engine, and doing my best to help out users so we can make great things together, but I don't have much time.

    That said, here are some things that will cause me to skip a bug report:
    * Frequently asked question that could have been googled. These are not a good use of my time.
    * Insufficient detail (lack of information on setup, lack of screenshots, contradicting terminology). It will take too many back-and-forths to deduce the problem.
    * Not my area of expertise (I work on lighting and shadowing)
    * Inflammatory or insulting. Yes, I could filter some useful information out of the angry post, but life's too short.

    Now Feature Requests. I do read 'Feedback for Epic' frequently, I just don't reply very often for these reasons:
    * If I know we won't get to it anytime soon, I feel guilty so don't reply. Having to say 'no, sorry' a lot will wear you down.
    * If I do think we should work on it soon, I don't want to say anything that will be taken as a promise (this happens a lot) or cause disappointment later if plans change, so I don't reply.
    * If we just implemented it and it's in the pipe for the next build then I'll probably reply. This is definitely the minority case =)

    Things that will increase your chance of a response:
    * Take advantage of the Preview builds to test your project and report issues. These are probably the most viewed threads by Epic employees. I scour for any severe rendering issues and even if they are not my feature, I forward to the relevant engineer. Similar level of coverage on the comments when the build has actually been released.
    * Use the user mention feature when you know an Epic employee user who it is relevant to. I pretty much always reply to these (even if the answer is sorry, no plans) if they are relevant to my area. Not sure how this works with the new forum.
    * I have trouble keeping up with Answerhub, issues fly by too fast. Link your Answerhub in relevant spots on the forums.

    Hope that is helpful.
    Much appreciate the candid response, and I don't disagree with you on some points there. But like others have mentioned and I did in my OP. Any response is better than no response. I mean, "insufficient detail" is subjective right? At this time there's nothing anywhere stating what the minimum amount of information you need to provide.

    The issue with Google sometimes is being able to get the right terms into the search to bring up what you want. I would like to think that most devs knew how to Google and tried to before posting on AH, and so that should be the assumption on your end as well. I know for a fact that even when you start typing in the Title into an AH post, when it brings up "relevant" posts, that 90% of the time it's not related to it at all. I'm pretty sure it's just using keywords in its algorithm.

    TBH, if there were a way to link Issues links along with the related posts, that could be helpful. But I do admit sometimes Issues is just as bad when it comes to searches.

    Anyway, so, if it comes down to $$$ , like I mentioned in a later post, I would like to see a Priority Support option for developers. Something in between what you have with the public answerhub and UDN. Be it a monthly subscription service or what have you. If it's a lack of personnel, which I suppose may come back to $$$ anyway, I would obviously just say then "hire some more" devs. Someone linked something on here about Unity doing some But Report experiment hiring out 20-25 student (forgot already while writing this), but they went from 2k to 5k bug report logs on average a month.

    Obviously, hiring an additional 20 bodies may not be feasible.

    Feature request: "No, sorry" is better than nothing. Trust me. Feeling "unimportant" or "invisible" because there are no responses to what devs feel are "important" to them, is worse than a "No".

    As for "Mentioning", if we could get a list of Epic Employees that do not mind being tagged separated by division, that would be greatly appreciated. Pin that somewhere, maybe even here in "Feedback For Epic", or every major sub-forum. /shrug

    Thanks again for the response!

    Leave a comment:


  • replied
    I personally quit AnswerHub after spam bots invaded over there again and again.

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  • replied
    I agree that Answerhub has a lot of noise and it also annoys me to filter bug reports by new users thinking they found a bug after using UE4 for a day (stepped back for the same reasons, also it takes away soooo much time and at some point, you think everyone should use google and then you start missing the real problems).

    I disagree that saying "no, sorry" will wear us down, I think it's disrespectful to think we are all kids that can't handle some rejections. I believe the community is smart enough to understand that your focus is somewhere else, but the trend to give less responses makes me feel like the comic S-ed posted.

    (Side note: Alex P created a big hole when leaving Epic)
    Last edited by Ninjin; 10-27-2017, 10:48 AM.

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  • replied
    Whenever i face a problem i rather use google or youtube than searching the AH. It feels like 90% of all threads there never get a reply anyway. Also i do not even dare to post there.

    Leave a comment:


  • replied
    Yeah, sadly I fully understand Daniel. Public AH is a mess and I don't see how this could be changed...

    Most of developers never worked as QA. Many of them never participate in development in AAA engine. And their reports are simply unclear and messy. I don't blame anyone, I started as QA at AAA game - I got trained to create awesome reports for developers. But most of people here (especially at indie studios) know very little about efficient bug reporting. It's not enough to say "there's bug, it looks like this".

    This is classic paradox of bug fixing.
    If the bug report isn't awesome and clear, you can't say anything until you fixed the issue
    - Developer can't say too much about issue until he finds the cause... And usually he needs to sacrifice few hours of work to find it...
    - But... when cause is found, very often it can be fixed instantly

    Let's look at this issue. I though I provided excellent repro. Nope...
    So I took my time, created copy of the project. Removed most of the content, hunted down the proper repro. Provided minimized version of my project (just few files, not saying anything about actual project). It took me hours... but programmer got stable repro, required to properly analyze problem and test the fix.
    https://answers.unrealengine.com/que...t-is-null.html

    I don't know... maybe the best thing here would be to create some awesome (but easy to understand) guide for efficient bug reporting. The basic QA training.
    Pin in to AH site, even force people to watch it (let's say it's youtube guide) before posting in Bug Reports section for the first time :P

    EDIT
    Unity hired entire team of students to go through this enormous amount of reports, they got 5K reports every month.
    https://blogs.unity3d.com/2017/10/24...r-bug-reports/
    Last edited by Moth Doctor; 10-27-2017, 09:22 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • replied
    Originally posted by ambershee View Post

    My opinion has been for some time, that Answerhub just isn't suitable for this kind of application; it's design encourages duplicate questions and buries existing answers - and with a large and mostly inexperienced userbase, you get an awful lot of questions filling up the front pages that have already been answered ad-infinatum, or are so vague as to be reasonably unanswerable. The genuinely difficult questions get pushed down and never answered, which in turn filters out the more experienced users who tend to have those questions.

    I suspect the decline in forum users is unrelated to Answerhub and vice-versa.
    Yeah. I rarerly read AnswerHub, not even thinking about answering questions on it. Most them are on level, where you can easily find answer on google.
    I also don't post much of forums lately, mainly because.. there is nothing much to post about. I just spend my time on Discord and here ask/answer questions.

    But I would like to have some paid support forums/Q&A site. With heavier moderation. It cloud be read by anyone, but only paying people cloud post on it. I guess the 50$/mo cloud do wonder to filter out all the basic questions (as well as deleting them).

    Leave a comment:


  • replied
    DanielW
    Feedback, no matter what kind, is better than no feedback.

    Sure there are reports or requests that were posted earlier and it surely is sometimes the user's fault for not googling/searching.

    take this thread from VictorBurgos for example:
    https://forums.unrealengine.com/unre...r-and-packaged

    This is something that basically breaks every game (if the execution order is taken granted from PIE instead of taking the order from Standalone into account) and yet there's no feedback from a dev at all.

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  • replied
    It does kind of feel like a lottery when you report bugs and you're waiting for a response. Because of this I have stopped reporting minor bugs, because someone might take a look at that minor bug report instead of a major bug report. An example of a minor bug like this is in Persona playing back an animation with morph target animation, if you pan around with the middle mouse button the morph target will snap back when the middle mouse button is released for one frame.

    If my bug report was skipped because of a lack of information or whatever, why not just say that? Then I can edit the post and add more information, better reproduction steps and so on. Right now it's either "We added this to the issues tracker" or you get ignored basically, which can't be good.

    Leave a comment:


  • replied
    Originally posted by AE_3DFX View Post
    In Epic they are casual humans too not some quantum computers to process everyone so it is understandable.
    I don't know. I'm fairly convinced Zak is Highlander or something. That dude doesn't age.

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  • replied
    In Epic they are casual humans too not some quantum computers to process everyone so it is understandable.

    Leave a comment:


  • replied
    Originally posted by DanielW View Post
    As an engineer, providing support on these forums is not in any way required by Epic, and I handle a lot of support from other sources that is part of my job (UDN, internal projects). I'm only here because I care about improving the engine, and doing my best to help out users so we can make great things together, but I don't have much time.....
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts DanielW.... Lots of really useful insight there.
    Honest / blunt clarifications like this from time to time are actually pretty helpful imo.
    Perhaps Alex P etc spoiled us a little too much before, with all the forum attention?
    Last edited by EntrpriseCustomr; 10-26-2017, 04:54 PM.

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  • replied
    As an engineer, providing support on these forums is not in any way required by Epic, and I handle a lot of support from other sources that is part of my job (UDN, internal projects). I'm only here because I care about improving the engine, and doing my best to help out users so we can make great things together, but I don't have much time.

    That said, here are some things that will cause me to skip a bug report:
    * Frequently asked question that could have been googled. These are not a good use of my time.
    * Insufficient detail (lack of information on setup, lack of screenshots, contradicting terminology). It will take too many back-and-forths to deduce the problem.
    * Not my area of expertise (I work on lighting and shadowing)
    * Inflammatory or insulting. Yes, I could filter some useful information out of the angry post, but life's too short.

    Now Feature Requests. I do read 'Feedback for Epic' frequently, I just don't reply very often for these reasons:
    * If I know we won't get to it anytime soon, I feel guilty so don't reply. Having to say 'no, sorry' a lot will wear you down.
    * If I do think we should work on it soon, I don't want to say anything that will be taken as a promise (this happens a lot) or cause disappointment later if plans change, so I don't reply.
    * If we just implemented it and it's in the pipe for the next build then I'll probably reply. This is definitely the minority case =)

    Things that will increase your chance of a response:
    * Take advantage of the Preview builds to test your project and report issues. These are probably the most viewed threads by Epic employees. I scour for any severe rendering issues and even if they are not my feature, I forward to the relevant engineer. Similar level of coverage on the comments when the build has actually been released.
    * Use the user mention feature when you know an Epic employee user who it is relevant to. I pretty much always reply to these (even if the answer is sorry, no plans) if they are relevant to my area. Not sure how this works with the new forum.
    * I have trouble keeping up with Answerhub, issues fly by too fast. Link your Answerhub in relevant spots on the forums.

    Hope that is helpful.

    Leave a comment:


  • replied
    It's always been there - but the new forum layout does make it a lot worse!

    Leave a comment:

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