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Unity forum satisfaction

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Metron, Feb 13, 2013.

?

How satisfied are you with the forum and the answers provided to your questions?

  1. Very satisfied

    20 vote(s)
    21.7%
  2. Satisfied

    18 vote(s)
    19.6%
  3. Ok

    23 vote(s)
    25.0%
  4. Not satisfied

    22 vote(s)
    23.9%
  5. Not satisfied at all

    9 vote(s)
    9.8%
  1. getafix99

    getafix99

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    I'm not saying they shouldn't, if they have time and can contribute something that can't be answered by the common programmer so why not, I'm just talking about efficiency.

    but what do I know, I'm no pro or even skilled programmer at all, I'm newbie myself, maybe your right, everyone should just keep answering the same questions all the time and avoid complicated questions.
     
  2. dtg108

    dtg108

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    I never said that. *Sigh*, some people don't understand. If they want, they can answer complicated questions. That's up to them. What they don't need is an exclusive thread, because like I've said 6,728 times is that having pro doesn't mean you are an experienced programmer.
     
  3. scarpelius

    scarpelius

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    In this era where a 15 year old can develop a cheap 5 min cancer diagnostic test just by researching on the internet, asking for $5 fee to a answer will be ludicrous.

    About community split, how do you know pro users will only go there? I am not asking for a pro Gossip section or pro Collab section, but a separate forum where questions from paying customers to have more visibility and more involvement from UT. I think a pro section will strengthen the community by encouraging many people to share their knowledge in an environment without the noise generated by newcomers. I am not that naive to think that basic questions aren't going to be asked in such a forum, but granted the number of such questions should be far less than now.

    And for people who mistaken the PRO with elite programmer = a pro section is for people who bought the professional version of Unity3D. Is not for elites, is for those who sustain with their money the very existence of this engine.
     
  4. Kinos141

    Kinos141

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    Having pro means you have money. Making a game with Unity means you have went through the trials and tribulations of game development within that engine. It doesn't mean you are an experienced programmer. Honestly, pro only offers things that AAA games need: Occlusion Culling, Image effects, pathfinding, etc. Those really aren't needed in a casual or mobile game experience.

    The only thing that means high experienced person for me is being able to building from scratch.
     
  5. lmbarns

    lmbarns

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    I just wish they would add ajax to let you read the first lines of the post by mousing over the link without opening it.

    Usually Eric provides the best answers.
     
  6. nullstar

    nullstar

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    You're right in that it would have no immediate benefit for experienced free users, but as pointed out it wouldn't hinder them either since no-one can get advanced support reliably with the current format anyway. The point is that it would at least solve the issue for pro users who are likely to be the people who are proffesional or indie devs trying to make a living of using Unity and most criticaly need reliable support.

    In the longer term it would also be beneficial for experienced free users since they would at least have the option of upgrading to get better support if they desperately need it unlike now where they are essentialy just stuck. Not to mention that there would be a section of the forum they could browse (even if they cant post / start threads) were advanced questions are getting answered.

    If I could think of a solution which would benefit everyone equally without putting an unreasonable demand on the Unity staff I'll be sure to tell everyone. In the mean time however surely its better to do something to help those who most criticaly need it than doing nothing to help anyone?


    Yes that's exactly right, its going to solve the problem of providing support to those who most need it, ie: people making a living from developing with Unity for whom the current lack of reliable support can be devestating to their job and/or financial security. Admitedly not all pro users will be proffesional developers, and not all proffesional developers will be pro users, but since there's no real way for Unity to differentiate between these two groups then splitting between pro and free unity users is the closest approximation. Quite frankly if you're trying to make your living of Unity and you dont have the pro version you really should anyway. Going pro gives and excellent return on perceived game quality and resultant saleability for the amount of effort and money required.

    Also I feel its pretty unreasonable for free users to demand the same level of support as pro users who have paid for Unity, and if you've paid for Unity I dont think its unreasonable for you to expect a certain level of support which is currently difficult to get.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  7. dtg108

    dtg108

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    Are you serious? I was being sarcastic! That would be terrible. We'd never get anywhere. The pros would offer much better advice than beginners.
     
  8. nullstar

    nullstar

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    The pros have no responsibility to answer beginners questions anyway, or anyones questions for that matter. People do it because they enjoy helping others. Having a pro help section isn't going to stop these people from answering beginner questions if that's what they like to do, but it does provide a sheltered place for pro questions where they aren't going unanswered because they get too quickly burried before they are seen by the small minority who would be able to help answer these questions.
     
  9. scarpelius

    scarpelius

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    He is mistaken buyers with professionals in game development. I have no doubt that some free users are pros in game dev, so what's the fuss about giving more rights to people who pay for you to use this engine?
     
  10. dtg108

    dtg108

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    Then it shouldn't be because they own Unity pro, it should be based on their skill level.
     
  11. nullstar

    nullstar

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    I already covered this:

     
  12. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    Or they could not put a meaningless partition between two groups.
     
  13. nullstar

    nullstar

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    I think I've given enough reasons why it would provide meaning and purpose and solve some serious issues.
     
  14. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    No, you really haven't. All you've done is create a social situation where the only people benefiting are a fraction of a fraction of Unity users based on who paid how much. Which means you're basically trading an increase in social stress for the benefit of a small number of forum users.
     
  15. nullstar

    nullstar

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    Doesn't Unity do exactly the same by with-holding certain features from free users? That's a reality of life. People who are paying for Unity should be able to expect a certain level of reliable support which currently doesn't really exist. What I've suggested solves that issue for paying customers without really having a negative impact on the free community.
     
  16. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    No, they don't do that and it's a ridiculous stretch to compare the two. What Unity needs is a comprehensive support structure in the first place, not a "haves" and "have nots" division.
     
  17. nullstar

    nullstar

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    Of course they do, last time I checked I couldn't use render to texture in unity free but can in unity pro for example. And can you think of a solution which acheives what you suggest without making unreasonable demands of Unity staff and negatively effecting their business. If so please let us know. What I'm suggesting isn't utopian but is certainly reasonable.
     
  18. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    That's entirely different from what you're proposing. And yes, I can think of something, and it's quite simple!

    Support staff.

    What you're proposing helps nobody but a small handful of pro users. All it does is create a walled garden of pro license holders who can only help each other and nobody else. Your claims that it would help other people is the functional equivalent to trickle-down economics, which was just as preposterous of a proposal. And yes, creating a functional support system that involves going outside of the Unity community would cost money. But you know what? This is the case with all good support systems.
     
  19. nullstar

    nullstar

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    You want something that costs money you have to pay for it somehow, that's reality. That cost will have to be transfered to the paying customer in some way. What I suggest doesn't place any additional financial burden upon Unity.
     
  20. khanstruct

    khanstruct

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    I've been part of forums that had Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced sections, and there was never any complaints. Each forum had a description, briefly explaining what issues tended to be beginner, advanced, etc.

    I also think this forum could use it. There are a lot of people here who think they're experts, but are really just beginners who have gotten the hang of their little understanding of code. This would put them in their place, and it would be illustrated by the fact that they wouldn't understand the things being discussed in the advanced forums (so they can't really complain, or insist that their dilemma is an "advanced" issue).

    Obviously, the Pro users are screaming for a Pro section, and the Free users are opposed to it. I still have Unity Free, and I would have no problem with that. Aside from me telling people about Unity and having games made with Unity, they aren't really getting anything from me. They should definitely put priority on the people who pay for and support the development of the engine financially. The Pro users are the only reason any of us have Unity at all.

    The fact is, Unity is growing quickly. You are now one in millions. Its simply unrealistic to think that your isolated concern should be addressed immediately and personally.

    Be a bit more grateful instead of complaining all the time. If you want your voice to be a bit more audible, pay for Pro and actually support/become part of the development of the engine. Don't just sit back and take, take, take, then complain when you haven't received "enough".
     
  21. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    Yeah, and it provides no benefit either because all it does is give pro users a clubhouse that only benefits them. But here's the thing: pro users can already talk to one another. These forums don't move very fast, certainly not fast enough to justify some sort of pro-partition.
     
  22. nullstar

    nullstar

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    It provides the benefit of reliable support to those who need it and deserve it most. And the forums are very crowded and do move very fast. The very fact that this issue is apparently raised so often points to there being a problem and the poll seems to be indicating that so far also
     
  23. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    If you think this is a fast moving forum then you haven't been using forums very long. This is one of the slowest moving forums, especially with support oriented sections, that I've ever seen. Not only that, but you're saying that your pro-partition will somehow make a significant amount of people with satisfaction issues somehow satisfied when none of your posts have provided any evidence to support that claim.
     
  24. dtg108

    dtg108

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    Preach on! It's obvious that very little people want this feature. Can you not tell by how many people have voted against it in this thread? Forget about it, it won't happen.
     
  25. nullstar

    nullstar

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    I've already hypothesised on the effect it would have on satisfaction:

    Higher visibility of advanced issues to experienced users will hopefully result in more of these issues getting resolved. Now obviously I cant provide solid proof that this would indeed be the case, but it seems like a very reasonable and likely outcome.
     
  26. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    Pro users are grown ups! They don't need a special shelter from the riff-raff of free users! Not only that, but calling this a solution to the support problem is an absolute joke because it's the most low-effort, ineffectual solution possible.
     
  27. nullstar

    nullstar

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    How do you know it would be ineffectual? I think you're dismissing it out of hand because you wouldn't directly benefit from it yourself.
     
  28. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    No, I'm dismissing it out of hand because it completely ignores the core issue of a lack of a comprehensive support system, something I have said in this very conversation. Your entire idea could be implemented by ignoring pro users entirely and just creating "beginner" and "advanced" sections. Functionally it would do the exact same thing but with a slight difference in the amount of traffic the section would see. There is no reason to require a $1500 payment.
     
  29. Noisecrime

    Noisecrime

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    Although i've presented a different alternative i'm really not sure I understand the argument against a Unity Pro (i.e purchased pro version or perhaps purchased any Unity product) sub-forum.

    The intention as I see it would be to

    1. Provide a sub-forum where more attention from Unity engineers is given.
    2. Where only Unity purchased product users can post.
    3. Anyone can read and reply.

    This means that those who have purchased a Unity Product see some minor additional benefit and why not?
    Questions are less likely to be noob-ish.
    Question frequency is likely to be less?
    Questions may be answered quicker and with more authority from Unity engineers.
    Answers are available to all and will filter down through the community conciousness, meaning that when similar questions are posted in the other sub-forums, they can either be directed to the Pro answer or that answer simply repeated.

    Far as I can see everyone wins.
     
  30. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    This could be solved with a partition between "advanced" and "beginner" questions.

    So could this.

    And this as well.
     
  31. nullstar

    nullstar

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    Perhaps you're right, it could certainly be tried. I suspect though that a lot of people dont like to consider themselves beginners once they've grasped the absolute basics and thus the advanced section wouldn't be very sheltered. Also like the mods have said, they'd have issues with kicking people back to the beginner section if they're posting out of place, many people would consider that an insult.

    Perhaps the bigger issue I try to address though is not necessarily one of creating a divide between skill levels, but of ensuring that poeple who criticaly require reliable support because developing with Unity is their living are able to get it. That's what providing a walled off area for paying customers would hopefully provide these people. Yes I know, not all professional developers will be using the pay version of unity, but this is the most approximate and reasonably enforcable divide I can imagine. With things the way they are with support I would be reluctant to go fully independant and rely soley on Unity which is a very real possibility for me, but I would be happy to if upgrading to unity pro meant I got some reasonable support.
     
  32. khanstruct

    khanstruct

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    There are a lot of people on these forums who need a good insult.

    Don't Pro users have access to a Pro-Support system already? I thought I read that somewhere. And if so, wouldn't it be a good thing to take that already existing system and make it viewable to everyone (even if the free users couldn't post there)?
     
  33. nullstar

    nullstar

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    Not that I'm aware of, but I hope I'm wrong :). If anyone knows please say.

    If so I think transparency would be a good idea like you say, but it should probably be at the users discretion to protect sensitive information.
     
  34. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    I've seen users with particularly detailed projects get support going as far as having people from Unity looking at their project files in general to offer support but I've no clue if that's a pro exclusive thing.
     
  35. Graham-Dunnett

    Graham-Dunnett

    Unity Technologies

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    Have you ever emailed support? PM me the case numbers if you have and my guys have not helped you.

    Which is exactly why we have a commercial support product called Premium Support.
     
  36. khanstruct

    khanstruct

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    That's what I was thinking of.
     
  37. nullstar

    nullstar

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    Thanks for the offer Graham but I haven't had any recent issues which desperately need solving. I'm rather trying to consider my possible future of being dependant upon Unity and how my experience with getting issues solved in the past have gone. I understand you have premium support but unfortunately this is likely out of the price range of what is affordable by many solo or small group independant developers, especially starting out. Also if you are only having infrequent issues this isn't a great way to spend your budget. These people rely on the forums for support which is currently a bit of an issue. That's why I'm trying to find a self perpetuating solution which doesn't necessarily rely upon any added expense on Unity's behalf.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  38. Aurore

    Aurore

    Head of Learn Content Production Unity Technologies

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    If this is about getting responses from more advanced users when you want it, have you tried the IRC chat?
     
  39. Graham-Dunnett

    Graham-Dunnett

    Unity Technologies

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    Users making a living out of Unity are recommended to take up a support subscription. It's like owning a car. You can get by without ever getting the car serviced, but it's far more cost efficient to get the car serviced regularly. The walled garden is called Premium Support.

    Sounds like you'd be better off spending your money on a support subscription and not upgrading to Pro. And yes, I know that Premium Support costs money, but then we have to pay for the support engineers somehow.
     
  40. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    Oh, huh, premium support is actually a lot less than I was expecting. I'm used to seeing most high-level support like that starting at $750 a month, minimum.
     
  41. khanstruct

    khanstruct

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    I think a large portion of issues within the community in general is that people don't use the tools and support that already exist. This tends to be an issue in all communities though.

    For instance, the irc mentioned above, the Skype group, support emails/tickets, the search function in the forums, Unity answers, etc, etc. If people would actually use all the tools that are already there, half of the complaints would be resolved overnight.
     
  42. Aurore

    Aurore

    Head of Learn Content Production Unity Technologies

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    ^ This

    **Granted though the search function could be improved.*** ....uh I mean what...
     
  43. MarigoldFleur

    MarigoldFleur

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    I think the easiest improvement would be having it so that results in the same thread would default to having to be expanded to see all the results. Right now searching for something like "UniTile" gives a wall of results from the same thread.
     
  44. nullstar

    nullstar

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    No I haven't, I'll be sure to give it a crack next time. Thanks for the info.

    I understand why you would recommend such a thing, but in my years of messing with unity I only have infrequent issues and in most cases I'm quite adept at resolving them. If I was to only need support once every couple of months or so its hard to justify that expense as an independant. For a small studio however it absolutely makes sense. Then again if I do find myself in that situation where I'm facing a show stopper issue and I'm loosing money or in risk of failling to fullfil a contract then premium support might look very appealing. Its just a shame there isn't a more reliable solution for infrequent support.

    I understand this completely but saving on a pro license would only pay for 3 months of support. However I sympathise completely that engineers need paying which is why I'm trying to find a more reliable community driven solution.
     
  45. Graham-Dunnett

    Graham-Dunnett

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    Oh, okay, I assumed you had issues that you needed help with, but couldn't get help.


    We do have a consultancy service which is more appropriate for solving specific issues. We get quite a few of these, where teams are trying to ship a product but hit last minute fatal bugs. In reality what this means is the team toss the project over to us, and we spend many many hours trying to understand their project structure, and figure out which scripts are actually used, and which assets go into the build. This can take many many hours, and most teams simply do not understand how hard it is even for highly experienced support engineers to learn a project from scratch to the point that they can start to debug issues.

    I do have 8 support engineers in my team. Last year that team cost $500k and handled 30k incidents. The "day job" for these guys is to answer emails that come into the support system, prioritising premium support customers. Once the queues are under control, the team spend some time in Answers and some time working to improve the product documentation. We know well that support is one-to-one, whereas Answers and the Forum is one-to-many. We do try hard to convert the issues that come into support into improvements in the product. The support guys work very very closely with the devs to get answer back to customers. Aurore, who works for me but is not part of the support team escalates issues she comes across to our development teams.

    Instead of a Pro forum, we launched Answers, which is somewhere that more specific questions can get answered. Yes, that site has it's fair share of noise, which, as someone said, is possibly a result of success. The benefit of Answers is that Pro users who are active gain karma, and so can close pointless posts. Thus more experienced users can play a part in the running of the site.
     
  46. nullstar

    nullstar

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    Thanks for the all the information Graham, very insightfull. Although I've frequently browsed Answers I wasn't aware of the pro karma system or how it worked. I should spend more time investigating the Answers system before making a judgement call on whether I feel secure about using Unity as an independant if it comes to that. With regards to the consultancy service, is this something that a pro user could pay for as a one-off when needed?
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  47. DougMcFarlane

    DougMcFarlane

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    Sorry if this has been already mentioned, but one option is to not allow new users (ones with post counts less than 10 for example) to create new posts in the regular forum sections. Give them their own appropriate forum section to ask questions ("Noobs", but called something less insulting!). "Noobs" can answer or contribute to any other thread however, to up their post count. You still run the risk that these noob questions won't be answered though.

    People that are more experienced (with game programming, or Unity specifically) may have a zero post count, so this may encourage them to answer other questions to up their count. Hopefully this would keep the main forum sections clean of noobish questions. (That is so relative though, I'm good at programming, but a noob at graphics, materials, shaders, etc). Better yet, have a button for users with 500+ post counts to move new posts to the noob section if deemed 'nooby'. Maybe not immediately but after it is confirmed by 3 or more people? Maybe give these 500+ people a drop down list of common answers to common questions, or general guides to direct noob questions. Just pondering ideas.

    Too bad we couldn't set up a reward system to encourage answers, either voted upon by the OP, or other forum readers. Better if you can reward multiple users in the same question, as multiple people can offer different details, and there may not be one correct and full answer. Just a "+1" to accumulate points. But what good are points? Hmm . . . save them up for asset store purchases (up to a max percent off perhaps, author approved), savings on future Unity purchases, or whatever. Or maybe nothing more than a badge / status to display in your avatar section.

    And to the 'Pro' only section discussion - I would hope that would be reworded to 'Paid' product section. I don't own Unity Pro, but I paid for Unity Indie when it was $199, plus Unity iPhone Basic for $399. Plus over $200 on the asset store.
     
  48. Aurore

    Aurore

    Head of Learn Content Production Unity Technologies

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  49. nullstar

    nullstar

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    Nice, I haven't seen that before, I'll give it watch. I think if there was a place I could turn too and pay for support as and when it was needed for crucial issues that would be ideal. I have no problem with paying for support, I just need to know I can rely on it. Sounds like the consultancy service could be the ticket, and then premium support for extended periods of difficulty. Thanks for the replies
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  50. pkid

    pkid

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    Personally I think when people pay $1500 (pro) +$1500(iOS pro) + $1500(android pro) = $4500 and then pay half that every upgrade they should get something more than forum support. I think this is unity's weakest point and it makes it hard to recommend unity to professionals. It would be nice if you got even just one or two support instances when you buy unity pro or an upgrade.