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Honest Response to "Pantheon is Vaporware"

    • 2886 posts
    April 24, 2023 1:11 PM PDT

    In the latest community watch party for Parting the Veil, someone in chat said they could not understand why anyone would still follow the game's development because they were convinced it's a lost cause. It's time we had a serious conversation about that... https://youtu.be/OQWG3NEY9kk

    • 13 posts
    April 26, 2023 6:13 AM PDT

    I've already left a comment on the video. I wanted to add that I feel you handled this situation perfectly, Baz.

    • 949 posts
    August 9, 2023 4:57 PM PDT

    Eliv said:

    I've already left a comment on the video. I wanted to add that I feel you handled this situation perfectly, Baz.



    I disagree.  I've personally never referred to it as vaporware, but by definition it technically is.  Vaporware actually means an advertised product that is unavailable "to the public as advertised".  PRotF (in it's current state) is still literally Vaporware by definition because it is still in development.  I don't think that is a negative thing, but it actually is vaporware.  Just because Baz gets to "test" it in a very limited access, does not mean it is a product available to the "public" even though it is available for purchase.

    I think a better way to handle the term is to acknowledge it for what it is while highlighting that just because something is vaporware in it's current state doesn't mean that it will remain that way.  A lot of developed software goes through cycles that sometimes includes a vaporware phase.  The most popular being Operating Systems and protocols.  If the developers intentionally never planned on releasing the product to the public and was simply using it as a test platform for a completely different game to get public feedback, then it is a negative term, but that is not at all the case here.  It is technically (by development life cycle definition) vaporware right now.

    Add: An important note is that if we had a definitive release date (even if approximately estimated within an annual quarter), then it would no longer fall under the definition of Vaporware.  As of now, there is literally no timeline for release...  i.e. Vaporware


    This post was edited by Darch at August 9, 2023 5:02 PM PDT
    • 13 posts
    August 10, 2023 5:06 AM PDT

    I understand where you are coming from, but I highly doubt that was what the commenter meant when they called the game vaporware. I've only ever heard it used in a negative fashion. As such, I belive Baz handled the video correctly. It has nothing to do with him being in the Pre-Alpha tests. The person he was responding to seemed to feel like the game was never going to come out and the devs were just after money. 

    • 949 posts
    August 11, 2023 7:59 AM PDT

    I hear ya, but I'm only referring to how he handled the topic of vaporware.  "We all know it's vaporware, and if it does come out it will be hot garbage" was the specific comment Baz sited from MrRogers88, but then went on to say that many people had a similar perception of the game.  Baz then went on to try to argue the point that the game isn't vaporware based on the point that HE got to TEST (not play) it - which, if anything, proves that it actually IS vaporware (by definition) because it isn't available to the thousands (maybe even hundreds of thousands) of people that paid for the product, AND there is no expected release date.  Those 2 combined facts are the staple of vaporware (hardware or software that is not available as advertised/expected).  His entire arguement, although well intentioned, was based on opinions being portrayed as fact; which is perfectly fine since he was responding to someone's opinion... but his arguement doesn't negate the fact that the game is still vaporware.

    I was not speaking to the rest of the video since this forum post is about the topic of "vaporware"... but the rest of the commentary was based on Baz contesting very pessimistic opinions, which were on point, but again nothing to do with the topic of vaporware.  

    • 903 posts
    August 16, 2023 8:27 AM PDT

    (Wiki) Vaporware:
    In the computer industry, vaporware (or vapourware) is a product, typically computer hardware or software, that is announced to the general public but is late or never actually manufactured nor officially cancelled. Use of the word has broadened to include products such as automobiles.

    Not quite what you are saying Darch. First: it isnt announced to the general public; it is still in pre-alpha. Second: it is being manufactured as we chat and as people can play it in pre-alpha. I, myself have had the honour of a couple of plays in the game so there is a game there.

    It is a pre-alpha game, in production with a view to being released in the future. Pantheon is not vaporware.


    This post was edited by chenzeme at August 16, 2023 8:27 AM PDT
    • 949 posts
    September 18, 2023 10:52 AM PDT

    chenzeme said:

    (Wiki) Vaporware:
    In the computer industry, vaporware (or vapourware) is a product, typically computer hardware or software, that is announced to the general public but is late or never actually manufactured nor officially cancelled. Use of the word has broadened to include products such as automobiles.

    Not quite what you are saying Darch. First: it isnt announced to the general public; it is still in pre-alpha. Second: it is being manufactured as we chat and as people can play it in pre-alpha. I, myself have had the honour of a couple of plays in the game so there is a game there.

    It is a pre-alpha game, in production with a view to being released in the future. Pantheon is not vaporware.

    If it wasn't announced and available to the public, then how did you (and literally everyone else in thees forums - that had to pledge (a.k.a purchase the game)) get access to these forums, yet only a handful of you actually get to access to the game (in a very limited fashion at that)?   Available only to a limited amount of people, even though a larger number of consumers have purchased it... That is the literal definition of vaporware.  

    Edit:  I would add that I purchased the game almost 8 years ago now... albeit, knowing that it would be unavailable for at LEAST 5 years, if it came to fruition at all.  I would also add that I'm ok if it never goes to production, BUT, that doesn't mean that it is not vaporware:  a.k.a. A software product that has been paid for but still not available... and still has the very real potential to never be.

    Edit2: Vaporware isn't a bad thing, but it is what it is.  Most software starts as vaporware until it is in production - or isn't.  A project in vaporware stage is better than a dead project.

     


    This post was edited by Darch at September 18, 2023 11:52 AM PDT
    • 903 posts
    September 19, 2023 1:30 AM PDT

    Darch:

    Edit:  I would add that I purchased the game almost 8 years ago now... albeit, knowing that it would be unavailable for at LEAST 5 years, if it came to fruition at all.  I would also add that I'm ok if it never goes to production, BUT, that doesn't mean that it is not vaporware:  a.k.a. A software product that has been paid for but still not available... and still has the very real potential to never be.

    Edit2: Vaporware isn't a bad thing, but it is what it is.  Most software starts as vaporware until it is in production - or isn't.  A project in vaporware stage is better than a dead project.

    You paid for the development of the game with a view to playing the full game upon its release if, as and when. There has never been a release date, so it cannot be late. The key here is that the game is still being developed. 

    Pantheon does have a product (albeit not finished), but it is in development and people get to use it, on a regular basis. We get regular updates to its progress (less so recently, granted, but updates non-the-less). I do not agree that software is vapourware until it is released; it is vapourware if it never gets released or there is no visible progress with the development of that software.

    There is still a promise that Pantheon will be released and we get updates on that progress and people get to use the software in pre-alpha tests; thus is it not vapourware. There is a produt. It is just not in a state to enter alpha testing, yet. If development stops and/or updates are not shared and/or an official release is made saying the game has been cancelled, then, and only then, does it become vapourware.

    Oh and the tag "vapourware" is definitely a bad thing, it suggests that something is not real and never will be; how is that a good thing? A dead project and true vapourware are, in essense, the same thing.

    Ok, I'm not going any further with what vapourware is and isnt and semantics of what is and is not. There is a product. It is not vapourware, yet.


    This post was edited by chenzeme at September 19, 2023 1:35 AM PDT
    • 949 posts
    September 19, 2023 4:59 PM PDT

    chenzeme said:

    You paid for the development of the game with a view to playing the full game upon its release if, as and when.

    No - I "pledged" and donated to the development of the game, which included "purchase" of, and "subscription" to the game which is outlined in the pledge information.

    chenzeme said:

    There has never been a release date, so it cannot be late. The key here is that the game is still being developed. 

    THIS is literally what makes it vaporware - the fact that there is no 'release date'.  If there were a release date (even if it were 10 years from now) it would no longer qualify as vaporware... literally.  They made the purchase available to the "general public" (General Availability Phase) but there is still no known timeline of when it will be "available" to those who purchased it.

    chenzeme said:

    Pantheon does have a product (albeit not finished), but it is in development and people get to use it, on a regular basis. We get regular updates to its progress (less so recently, granted, but updates non-the-less). I do not agree that software is vapourware until it is released; it is vapourware if it never gets released or there is no visible progress with the development of that software.

    The "people that get to use" the product are not the thousands of people that paid for it, and it doesn't matter if we "agree" or disagree with the definition... definitions are not based on opinion.

    chenzeme said:

    There is still a promise that Pantheon will be released and we get updates on that progress and people get to use the software in pre-alpha tests; thus is it not vapourware. There is a produt. It is just not in a state to enter alpha testing, yet. If development stops and/or updates are not shared and/or an official release is made saying the game has been cancelled, then, and only then, does it become vapourware.

    Oh and the tag "vapourware" is definitely a bad thing, it suggests that something is not real and never will be; how is that a good thing? A dead project and true vapourware are, in essense, the same thing.

    Yes, there is a promise of release, but there is no timeline in any of those updates... even though people have paid for the product.  I'm not saying that they aren't working hard or that there is no software in existence, I'm just saying, according to the development phase definition, the product is still vaporware until they either announce a release date or release it to production.  If "development stops" and/or the release is "canceled" it is actually NO LONGER vaporware... but has instead become a dead project.  Vaporware only exists when a product is in perpetual development without a projected scope/date of completion.  Vaporware is not "bad"... it is unfavorable because it shows a lack of project management or poor planning, but it isn't "bad".  It's not a "good" thing, because of what I just stated, but it does carry negative connotation (in the form of failing to define a scope of work) - but this is semi-normal in crowd funded games; it's not "bad".  A "dead project" means there is no progress being made - "vaporware" means there is no tangible product for the customers in the foreseeable future (because there is no date/timeline/plan established). 

    chenzeme said:  

    Ok, I'm not going any further with what vapourware is and isnt and semantics of what is and is not. There is a product. It is not vapourware, yet.

    You're trying to re-define an already defined software development stage sir.  Just because "a product" exists doesn't make it production ready.  All software that is purchased and inaccessible (to any who purchased it) with no announced date of release is vaporware... until it has a release date or is actually in production (or otherwise available to purchasers...), it is vaporware - period.  Those are the only criteria, everything else is opinion.  You (and a restricted/limited number of others) having 'very restricted and limited' access to the product is part of the development phase, not production phase.


    This post was edited by Darch at September 20, 2023 9:16 PM PDT