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-   -   Giving up on Ream Works (http://forums.wolflair.com/showthread.php?t=57676)

gaffneyks February 13th, 2017 06:54 AM

If you were a 5th edition player, I could totally understand given the lack of content for 5e in the Content Market and the fact that they are not ready to bring WOTC content to the Content Market yet.

But you are a Pathfinder player, that is LWD Content Market focus. I bet the pathfinder players will always get the latest and greatest from Paizo as compared to the 5e players who can't even get WOTC content at all. All you have to do is wait for them to get the final bugs out and you are GOLDEN!

Yes, the wait has been long and they have not meet the dates stated, but that is common in the IT industry. And look at all the patches they have released this year! Some IT companies go on a release schedule and if you find a bug and the product in not usable, its just tough cookies till the next release. At least this company is responsive. I have even seen the owner on the forum asking players to make sure the problem that they complained about was fixed to their satisfaction.

On a final note, Realm Works is very easy to use compared to some of the other products i have looked into recently.

Zortek February 13th, 2017 01:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ChipmunkPDX (Post 244034)
Anyone else jump ship, and if so what have you gone to?

Aside from MNBlockHead and Bidmaron (minimally), none of the responses actually addressed your question. However, there's no shortage of people willing to be critical of your position. I am not in that camp.
  • The Keep 2.0 is another campaign and game management system for Windows, though it looks like it could use an update and costs around $35 to buy. I'm not a fan. It is aging poorly. :eek:
  • DM Genie is a Windows tool for players and game masters running the third edition (or revision 3.5) of Dungeons and Dragons. Itís no longer supported by developers and thus free to download. I'm not a fan. It is past its expiration date. :eek:
  • Scrivener is a comprehensive writing project management package used by screenwriters, novelists, and anyone who needs a hand organizing a big project. It can also be used to create a comprehensive overview of your campaign, story, characters, NPCs, and more (though thereíll be a lot of manual work involved). I am a fan. I like this product. It is well designed and fit for purpose; that purpose being (professional) organized writing. :cool:

    I would be doing the answer a disservice if I didn't also mention "old school" pen and paper; notebooks are still in my toolkit.
Quote:

Originally Posted by ChipmunkPDX (Post 244034)
I am glad I held off asking the players to buy a copy, because I am going to jump ship.

I say, "Good on you!"

All the apologists making all the excuses don't change your situation. You must do what is best for your players, your story, and ultimately for you.

The bottom line is that LWD is an organization of folk of good intentions and good ideas. However, good intentions and good ideas only hold water for so long in business.

The ad hoc business strategy at this juncture is to over promise and under deliver. This is exactly the opposite approach that a company with a sector/industry flagship (a.k.a. best-in-class) product should apply.

Every delivery at this point comes with self-aggrandizing fanfare; however, because there is so much expectation baked into releases, delivery is generally unremarkable for the consumer. This reflects a gross lack of over-the-horizon planning, marketing savvy, and community management.

Perception is king. Managing perception is king making. Resource constraints are simply a fact of business and life in general. It is most sad that LWD is unaware of the fact that every release of product is met with as much resentment as satisfaction. It is also most sad that revenue generating content has been pushed so far into the vanguard that both desirable and necessary functional capabilities are perceived as being neglected. -- "There are only so many programming hours in a day."
The bottom line is, when one is in a hole, stop digging. This is as true for producers as it is for consumers. LWD operates on the principle of making promises with the noble intention of honoring them some day. Well, one can only dip from the promissory bucket so often before the bucket is empty.

Its time to refill the bucket.

Refilling the bucket begins with rolling back historical product, delivery, and support expectations. Refilling the bucket continues with a commitment to responsible, pragmatic project (and business) management. Keeping the bucket filled includes a commitment to living documentation, honest marketing, and uplifting community management.
Unless and until the deciders choose to acknowledge problems exists, there can be no improvement; mismanagement and failed leadership will persist in corroding the brand. I believe it is important for people to speak truth to power, demonstrate honest dissatisfaction, and challenge group-think with candor.

Good luck to you.

EightBitz February 13th, 2017 04:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Zortek (Post 244131)
[INDENT]The bottom line is, when one is in a hole, stop digging. This is as true for producers as it is for consumers. LWD operates on the principle of making promises with the noble intention of honoring them some day. Well, one can only dip from the promissory bucket so often before the bucket is empty.

I understand everyone has a different perception, but from where I sit, the digging has stopped.
  • I can build worlds, campaigns and adventures in a very flexible environment.
  • I can build a core system, export that, and import it into other realms so I can keep a gold copy of my core system intact while using another copy in a dynamic play environment.
  • In that same manner, I can design an adventure once, export it and import it, and use that to keep track of different groups.
  • I can present to my players on the web.
  • I can present to my players at the table.

By your own admission, most of the products you listed are showing their age or are unsupported. Scrivener is great, but it's not designed to do what Realm Works does. I have Scrivener, and I use it. Not to say it's not a great tool, but it serves a different purpose.

I am no apologist. I fully concede that expectations have not been handled well. I said that before it was even released. I've watched Realm Works struggle to grow up. The process hasn't been perfect. But now it's finally starting to mature.

I can do everything I need to do with it. I know that the content market is important for revenue, and that custom calendars are important for people who are far more detailed than I in designing their worlds. I'm not going to say I would be happy if these things never came to be, but I will say that with HTML/World conversion script, the product is eminently usable without them.

But still, I eagerly anticipate seeing the product come to its full maturity.

Dark Lord Galen February 13th, 2017 07:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Zortek (Post 244131)
A..............
The bottom line is that LWD is an organization of folk of good intentions and good ideas. However, good intentions and good ideas only hold water for so long in business.

The ad hoc business strategy at this juncture is to over promise and under deliver. This is exactly the opposite approach that a company with a sector/industry flagship (a.k.a. best-in-class) product should apply.
.....................
Perception is king. Managing perception is king making. Resource constraints are simply a fact of business and life in general. It is most sad that LWD is unaware of the fact that every release of product is met with as much resentment as satisfaction. It is also most sad that revenue generating content has been pushed so far into the vanguard that both desirable and necessary functional capabilities are perceived as being neglected. -- "There are only so many programming hours in a day."
The bottom line is, when one is in a hole, stop digging. This is as true for producers as it is for consumers. LWD operates on the principle of making promises with the noble intention of honoring them some day. Well, one can only dip from the promissory bucket so often before the bucket is empty.

Its time to refill the bucket.

Refilling the bucket begins with rolling back historical product, delivery, and support expectations. Refilling the bucket continues with a commitment to responsible, pragmatic project (and business) management. Keeping the bucket filled includes a commitment to living documentation, honest marketing, and uplifting community management.
Unless and until the deciders choose to acknowledge problems exists, there can be no improvement; mismanagement and failed leadership will persist in corroding the brand. I believe it is important for people to speak truth to power, demonstrate honest dissatisfaction, and challenge group-think with candor.

Good luck to you.


Zortek... very well put.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Eightbitz
I understand everyone has a different perception, but from where I sit, the digging has stopped.

@ Eightbitz ... while I have enjoyed your posts in the past and certainly your community support has been stellar, got to say I disagree with this one. It has only slowed.... LWD still sends out polls and then proceeds with what they feel is needed regardless of the feedback. I do understand some is based on economic survivability and whom they develop partnered relationships with.. but with those as Zotek so rightly points out, are the vangards that drive the path forward, there is no real need to raise false hope with polls that are skewed or at best simply a weathervane.

In reality, they still (now years later) have failed to deliver on things (no sense listing that horse has been beat to death) presumably close or already present features (in need of better UI) when Realm Works was initially released.

Don't get me wrong, I'm a fan warts and all, and I have used many of the other software management tools (and others) mentioned and Realmworks will be superior to all of them... but " the soon well has runnith dry". And polls won't fill it.
From my players perspective, their purchase of RW player's addition was a waste of money and they have abandoned it. Fortunately the expense there is not large, BUT Without Calendars, individual player and character reveal, and pc journals and multiple unrecoverable crashes they simply utilize other products for these and Herolab for their PC Sheets because of the lack of funtionality.

@ Chipmunk > as to giving up... like others have stated.. at this point??? unless there is some feature you just can't run your game without that you have not mentioned? I would suggest, at the very least, you could utilize RW as I do, as an electronic file cabinet for your world. IT certainly beats combing through reams of handwritten notes to quickly find obscure info and arrange your past, and present game notes in one place.
just my 2cp

Bidmaron February 13th, 2017 08:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Zortek (Post 244131)
Unless and until the deciders choose to acknowledge problems exists, there can be no improvement; mismanagement and failed leadership will persist in corroding the brand. I believe it is important for people to speak truth to power, demonstrate honest dissatisfaction, and challenge group-think with candor.

Zortek, I am not sure what leads you to believe most of what is in that paragraph. I don't want to get in a flame war, but I am not aware that LWD has failed to acknowledge any of the delays or problems stemming from them. (I suspect the stress from that was a big part of his recent hospitalization). Aside from schedule, it seems like they either have or intend to keep all their promises. I have not had to pay anything for the free cloud service I have enjoyed for at least two years, as just one example.

I was not personally attacking him, I was merely pointing out that it is illogical to abandon a product that is widely recognized as the most capable product in its category (even when expanded to include scrivener) because it does not include a content feature when absolutely zero of the competitor products in the category (unless you inappropriately expand it to include VTTs) have that feature.

That is almost a textbook case of an illogical decision.

EightBitz February 13th, 2017 08:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dark Lord Galen (Post 244173)
@ Eightbitz ... while I have enjoyed your posts in the past and certainly your community support has been stellar, got to say I disagree with this one. It has only slowed.... LWD still sends out polls and then proceeds with what they feel is needed regardless of the feedback. I do understand some is based on economic survivability and whom they develop partnered relationships with.. but with those as Zotek so rightly points out, are the vangards that drive the path forward, there is no real need to raise false hope with polls that are skewed or at best simply a weathervane.

I think in principle, though, we agree. My community support HAS been stellar.

No, no, I'm kidding. My community support is modeled after others who've worked on the community packs, on Doctor Who, on GURPS Lite (even though that one was pulled, at the request of Steve Jackson Games, whom I've stopped supporting).

But back to the matter at hand. I'm not saying everyone should go out and buy RW right now based on future promises. Nor am I saying everyone should have their players buy licenses for player view. Until the Import Export feature was released, Realm Works has mostly been collecting dust on my machine for quite a long time.

What I AM saying is that if you've already invested, and if you've held out this long, this is the wrong time to jump ship.

But everyone's gotta do what they gotta do. I'm not trying to insult or shame anyone. I hope that whoever gives up here and moves on finds something that'll make them happy. I just think the timing is wrong.

Viking2054 February 13th, 2017 10:02 PM

I think, for some, the real problem was getting their players to buy the player version. For the GM, the GM version is probably the best product available as a campaign management tool. But for players, I think, the product is lacking in key features they want. It is one of the reasons I have not encouraged anyone in my gaming group from buying. It is also why I've advised anyone that has asked me to 'wait until the content market comes out.'

I still believe RW's biggest setback was the switch over to HTML late in the products life. I understand the need to do it, but I think it should of been undertaken much earlier in the products development. As soon as possible after deciding on a web based product would of been ideal for the switch. Anyway, hindsight is 20/20 and it's too late to do anything about it now.

Is it the perfect piece of software for campaign management? Not yet, but it is well on it's way for being the current best.

By the way, I blame Hasbro/WotC for lack of DnD support. Their stance on digital tools is asinine. If they followed Paizo's approach and forced a PDF purchase with a RW code, they would probably greatly increase their sales. I know it would make the community demanding PDF's of DnD happy to finally be able to purchase them.

Zortek February 14th, 2017 12:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bidmaron (Post 244179)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Zortek (Post 244131)
Unless and until the deciders choose to acknowledge problems exists, [...]

Zortek, I am not sure what leads you to believe most of what is in that paragraph. I don't want to get in a flame war, but I am not aware that LWD has failed to acknowledge any of the delays or problems stemming from them. (I suspect the stress from that was a big part of his recent hospitalization). Aside from schedule, it seems like they either have or intend to keep all their promises. I have not had to pay anything for the free cloud service I have enjoyed for at least two years, as just one example.

For clarity, I believe there is a distinction between incidents and problems. Events that result in missed milestones are are incidents. Failing to meet expectations is a problem. This may seem like linguistic acrobatics or pedantic frivolity; however, the distinction is well documented in business process management and continuous improvement practice (and well beyond the polite scope of social brevity). :p

I appreciate your feedback. And I believe we are well within the fuzzy boundaries of agreement. I can see how, in rushing my wrap-up, I sabotaged my own message in the last paragraph (and how your read is appropriately vexed). This is my failing; my post closure was ill-crafted and predicated on argumentation I failed to adequately provide. I stipulate to your comments as they are appropriate as contextually framed.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bidmaron (Post 244179)
I was not personally attacking him, I was merely pointing out that it is illogical to abandon a product that is widely recognized as the most capable product in its category (even when expanded to include scrivener) because it does not include a content feature when absolutely zero of the competitor products in the category (unless you inappropriately expand it to include VTTs) have that feature.

I agree. Though I did suggest that feedback to the OP was, in large part, critical of the OP's idea, I do not feel any of the shock and dismay could be characterized as a personal attack on the OP.

I am a huge fan of RW. RW has, at present, a permanent place in my toolkit. Like many others, I believe it is fit for purpose (warts and all). And, for reasons that are entirely my own, I am unlikely to ever avail myself of any commercial offering from the content marketplace. Part of me hopes the delivery delay is infinite so as to perpetuate free cloud service. However, I know such hope is futile... but I digress.

To me, the OP statement/action possesses no logic gap. I see the decision as part of a consumer journey. It is neither a point of origin nor a destination. I honestly believe his action is a commitment to consumer values.

I cannot deny that from some points-of-view, such action may seem illogical. However, because I see it as a journey, I compassionately welcome anyone to pass in or out the door. If the other side of the threshold offers less suffering, then by all means, let us rejoice in that.

It is often said, "The grass is greener over the septic tank." :eek:

We all are confronted by the same basic question, can we appreciate the aroma where we presently stand sufficient that we are not motivated to take to different turf.

---

I too desire no flame war. While I insist on projecting a tone that ranges from coaching to finger-waggling toward LWD, I pray my tone with you has been even more constructive. :)

Bidmaron February 14th, 2017 04:57 AM

Zortek, it is always a joy to be able to speak civilly about an issue where they may be disagreement.

Thanks for keeping it that way.

I do have a little trouble understanding why folks are upset with player edition. It is missing key features currently, but at its launch there was never any attempt to disguise that it was missing those features. Now if the rage is because there was anticipation that those missing features would be available in a more timely way, I can somewhat understand that. However, no one should buy a product that clearly is missing what they consider essential features.

Pollution February 14th, 2017 05:29 AM

Deleted


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