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Farewell To Custom Hats/skins


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#21 Stratos

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Posted May 05 2010 - 12:54 AM

To be honest, it'll totally be a dick move if Valve does go for the "Buy-Games-For-New-Hats" approach.

Personally, I don't see the point of it either. If there's one thing that MAY justify that sort of act is for promotional purposes. Even that, by going with the said approach, TF2 players whom are desperate for hats will rage their asses off, and will make it look as if Valve is forcing them to buy the stated games to get hats.

Seriously, I know people are already working on crafting and random drops to get hats. That's basically more than enough burden to get them. But by going with said approach would just be rubbing it in. At least spare the equipment manager, it's not like it permanently give hats to players.


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#22 Lemming

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Posted May 05 2010 - 01:09 AM

I'm hoping this is all just a side effect of some cloud inventory verification system that can be either be fixed or be provided with an alternate system for community mods. I remember seeing all kinds of "Couldn't attach item to some person because it wasn't in their inventory" error messages after the update.

If I had to guess what's happening, I would say that most everything still works server side, but it's extra client side verification that's screwing everything up. That's why you can see em hats equipped on yourself, but not em hats on other people. The hats failed the check against their inventories and were being rejected by your client, whereas the hats you're wearing weren't checked against your inventory and were displayed.
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#23 Reag

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Posted May 05 2010 - 02:36 AM

Well thats my tail model out the window.

#24 voogru

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Posted May 05 2010 - 04:48 AM

I really, REALLY hope they won't start selling hats.

I dunno but it seems like a very desperate and very Un-Valve-like thing to do. Also spending money on virtual things that you are never going to have any use of just rubs me the wrong way =/ I'd lose a lot of respect for Valve, but maybe I'm just petty.


I don't really have a problem with them selling hats, they might do it as a proof of concept. If the hats don't do anything gameplay wise and are just pretty, and players want to spend money on them, more power to them.

And if they want to protect that content from being used without authorization, that's fine with me. The players are in control of their wallets. If they think a hat is worth a few bucks to them, then it's worth a few bucks.

But, like before, don't cripple legitimate functionality over it.

I'm hoping this is all just a side effect of some cloud inventory verification system that can be either be fixed or be provided with an alternate system for community mods. I remember seeing all kinds of "Couldn't attach item to some person because it wasn't in their inventory" error messages after the update.

If I had to guess what's happening, I would say that most everything still works server side, but it's extra client side verification that's screwing everything up. That's why you can see em hats equipped on yourself, but not em hats on other people. The hats failed the check against their inventories and were being rejected by your client, whereas the hats you're wearing weren't checked against your inventory and were displayed.


If this was the case, when attaching other entities that are not wearable entities, they'd be visible. They are intentionally disabling this, thats why PropHunt broke.

#25 Phosphatide

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Posted May 05 2010 - 05:41 AM

I'm lost.

Is it only the Equipment Manager that's now non-functioning, or did they make it so that you can't see other people's hats in general?

#26 voogru

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Posted May 05 2010 - 06:05 AM

I'm lost.

Is it only the Equipment Manager that's now non-functioning, or did they make it so that you can't see other people's hats in general?


It's all forms of attachments, Equipment Manager is just one of the things that broke.

#27 Auradragon

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Posted May 05 2010 - 06:40 AM

Well that sucks >.> No more tails unless you skinned them for the halo, or something else.

But, personally, I don't see them ever doing a straight-up "Buy Hats" approach. It just doesn't seem like Valve. They're cool that they have special hats for promotions, but I don't think they'd ever sell individual hats.
Blizzard is only able to get away with selling mounts and pets because, well, they're Blizzard. They can blow up an orphanage and get support from the WoW community (a little exaggerated, but you get my point). Their single-unit selling approach has always been inside their usual range of stuff. I mean they don't give you a freaking authenticator in a pack of WoW, you have to buy it. You'd think they'd be a little more sympathetic for their demographic and go ahead and include it in every World of Warcraft box.

Anyway... I'm pretty sure Valve is not going to start selling individual items for their games. For one it isn't an MMO XD Plus it just totally seems out of their range.
Besides, it's their game. People invented the system to sort of cheat them and pretend to have a hat. It shows how much they like Valve and their ideas whenever they use it. But, remember, not everyone is going to support stuff like this. It's their game, and if they want you to earn/stay with them till you get a random drop it's THEIR choice. They've probably lost a bit of money due to stuff like this. People don't come on as often so they can get hats. They just join, get in a server with one of these mods, and boom, no need for the real thing. And if there is no need for the real thing, people won't play as often to try to get the hat to drop.
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#28 AL!

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Posted May 05 2010 - 06:54 AM

Well, I *Think* the source prop spawner still works. I wonder if simply changing the height at which it spawns on a player, could be a workaround :huh:
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#29 voogru

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Posted May 05 2010 - 07:01 AM

Well, I *Think* the source prop spawner still works. I wonder if simply changing the height at which it spawns on a player, could be a workaround :huh:


Doesn't matter, if it's not parented to the player it's movement will lag. As of right now, if it's parented to the player, it's invisible.

#30 AL!

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Posted May 05 2010 - 08:03 AM


Well, I *Think* the source prop spawner still works. I wonder if simply changing the height at which it spawns on a player, could be a workaround :huh:


Doesn't matter, if it's not parented to the player it's movement will lag. As of right now, if it's parented to the player, it's invisible.


Does lag a bit. Label it as a "Crude" workaround for now :(
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#31 ratty

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Posted May 05 2010 - 09:29 AM

What I'd really would like them to do, is to setup their system to only protect the content they want to protect, and allow everything else. This way they have their goal of blocking unauthorized use of official or promotional content, while at the same time allowing custom content through. Everybody wins this way, and it's really the only solution that will be a win-win for everybody.


I've thought about this some more, they probably tried, but they could not think of a way.
Even if they blocked it, with equipment manager I could just make a copy of the model as a new file, and use that for a "custom model", and I don't think they could stop that.

#32 voogru

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Posted May 05 2010 - 06:25 PM


What I'd really would like them to do, is to setup their system to only protect the content they want to protect, and allow everything else. This way they have their goal of blocking unauthorized use of official or promotional content, while at the same time allowing custom content through. Everybody wins this way, and it's really the only solution that will be a win-win for everybody.


I've thought about this some more, they probably tried, but they could not think of a way.
Even if they blocked it, with equipment manager I could just make a copy of the model as a new file, and use that for a "custom model", and I don't think they could stop that.


If servers go this far for the hat, the hat has to be downloaded again anyway. The amount of servers doing this would be in the minority because there are plenty of custom hats available anyway. And Valve could always opt to delist servers using official content in such a manner.

#33 ratty

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Posted May 05 2010 - 06:37 PM

Has there been any official response to this? I would hope 1500 signatures would at least be worthy of a hello from them.

#34 voogru

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Posted May 05 2010 - 06:48 PM

Has there been any official response to this? I would hope 1500 signatures would at least be worthy of a hello from them.


No response. But I'll just gather as many signatures as possible and if it ever slows down enough I'll create something really nice and professional looking, print it all out, and mail it to valve along with a nicely written letter, perhaps I'll even get other server admins of large communities to write up a letter and sign it as well. To show them how much we care about the ability to do this.

I will remain professional as possible and I'm not going to go out calling valve names or anything like that. Just asking them really nicely and making a good case.

#35 RickDaedalus

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Posted May 05 2010 - 07:17 PM

I'm a bit confused, I'm not seeing anything form Valve that hints, "We're going to sell hats." Am I right to assume it's just random speculation?

As for the breaking of equipment manager, it might be due to people having access to hats they shouldn't have, such as Bill's Hat and Max's Severed Head. I understand if they broke it for that reason, those hats were for promotion. They were to spark interest in different games by providing something the average user was interested in, hats. It was essentially a: "Hey buy this game because it's really good. We'll throw in a toy if you do."

It acts as an incentive to buy a particular product by being a bonus (keeping in mind that Sam and Max was not made by Valve). However, the main fault on their part was assuming that the user wouldn't see the game as the bonus.

Spoiler:
In short, hats are silly so you should ask yourself: Why do I care so much about hats?


P.S. I'd also address the other mods being broken, but to be honest they seem more like a minor gripe at the moment. If there's a more input I guess I might consider thinking about it.

#36 voogru

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Posted May 05 2010 - 07:20 PM

I'm a bit confused, I'm not seeing anything form Valve that hints, "We're going to sell hats." Am I right to assume it's just random speculation?

As for the breaking of equipment manager, it might be due to people having access to hats they shouldn't have, such as Bill's Hat and Max's Severed Head. I understand if they broke it for that reason, those hats were for promotion. They were to spark interest in different games by providing something the average user was interested in, hats. It was essentially a: "Hey buy this game because it's really good. We'll throw in a toy if you do."

It acts as an incentive to buy a particular product by being a bonus (keeping in mind that Sam and Max was not made by Valve). However, the main fault on their part was assuming that the user wouldn't see the game as the bonus.

Spoiler:
In short, hats are silly so you should ask yourself: Why do I care so much about hats?


P.S. I'd also address the other mods being broken, but to be honest they seem more like a minor gripe at the moment. If there's a more input I guess I might consider thinking about it.


Like I said, I have no objection to them protecting official and or promotional content. Just do so in a way that does not break modifications.

I'm probably going to be putting together a nice package to send over to valve (the petition signatures and letters from other community administrators, plug-in authors, etc) to show how much we care about the ability to do this.

#37 ratty

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Posted May 05 2010 - 07:20 PM

I'm a bit confused, I'm not seeing anything form Valve that hints, "We're going to sell hats." Am I right to assume it's just random speculation?


That's right, pure speculation, they have never even hinted that it is their plan. But they have not said they would not do it either.

#38 RickDaedalus

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Posted May 05 2010 - 07:49 PM

That's right, pure speculation, they have never even hinted that it is their plan. But they have not said they would not do it either.


Then the concern should be about, "They're breaking our mods," rather than, "They may sell hats."

If there's absolutely nothing supporting the hypothesis that they're going to sell hats, then you shouldn't really cause worry over that. It'd be the argumentum ad ignoratium (not 100% exact though). What's essentially being said is that they might sell hats because they haven't said that they won't.

I don't mean to offend, but at this point worrying about the selling of hats seems like an unnecessary concern.

#39 ratty

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Posted May 05 2010 - 07:55 PM

Nonetheless, the motives are part of the equation. I haven't seen any official supposed reason for making such a community screwing move, so we're left to speculation. It wasn't even in the update notes, we had to just figure out on our own what was happening.

Knowing WHY helps in thinking up a good solution. It doesn't make sense, to me at least, why they would take such a severe action to protect the bill hat, and sam & max, they can't be getting that much profit from that. And people STILL CARE about getting the real things unlocked, even people that pretty much only play on servers with equipment manager, they still want their favorite hats unlocked. So the only thing I can think of that would make it all fit is them taking it to the next level somehow, and having equipment manager would just ruin that. And yes I know that these changes broke other things, but those were more collateral damage, I don't think Valve has anything against dodgeball.

So if we go with the "they will sell items" theory, Voogru has already suggested that they can just make it not work having a server unlock a valve item, while still allowing for custom items, that would scale with any new items Valve would add, and they can keep the profits, and we can all be happy with that solution. I can say I'd be happy with that too, I don't care about the Valve hats, we have several modelers that can come up with new cool stuff that is better than any DLC anyhow.

So if you want to add to the conversation, that's great, but understanding the reasons for things is important to some of us, and frankly we are going to talk about it whether you like it or not.

#40 RickDaedalus

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Posted May 05 2010 - 08:12 PM

Nonetheless, the motives are part of the equation. I haven't seen any official supposed reason for making such a community screwing move, so we're left to speculation.
Knowing WHY helps in thinking up a good solution, so if we go with the "they will sell items" theory, voogru already put forward that they can just simply make it not work having a server unlock a valve item, while still allowing for custom items.

So if you want to add to the conversation, that's great, but understanding the reasons for things is important to some of us, and frankly we are going to talk about it whether you like it or not.


I didn't say we shouldn't talk about why they did it, I even offered my own speculation not too long ago. All I was trying to say is that there isn't much reason to worry about selling hats unless something comes up that points to it. So far all that's known is that they broke it. I offered the hat promotion theory only because the article details are emphasizing hat entities. The reason why I think the selling of hats is a strange idea is because it'd cause a significant shift in the way Valve distributes content. For something as major as that, more evidence is needed before it becomes a feasible idea. Until then, all we can really do is twiddle our thumbs until something happens.


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