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Well its a new year so why don't I head over the trench?

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Of late I have noticed that e-sim has when confronted with suggestions regarding potential enhancements or additions to this simulator, given what seems to be becoming the standard response.

Usually along the lines of budgetary constraints, resources, time constraints. Governments don't want it or that you can 'pretend' through editor tweaks etc that the item in question is there. All those things you hear from all the other software houses.

The addons we do get whilst appreciated and finished to a very good fine standard do seem to be a tad random and I can only assume to be some 'wouldn't it be nice if' idea from some grey suited bureaucrat who was filling in a feed back sheet to kill off another hour of his/her day.

Has he spent so long dealing with contributing countries governments that this kind of monotone civil servant response seems like an answer?

Were all pretty long in the tooth here and most of us are fully aware of the restrictions and advancements in the simulation and technology field.

In fact sometimes the only reason that some of the 'enhancements' haven't appeared in SB seems to be a complete lack of awareness in the 'Civil service' of exactly how far things have come and a failure to point them out?

Mostly this I would guess is driven by government restrictions on Hardware and software budgets.

For example 'we cant afford to update our computers to run all that fancy 'civilian' nonsense'.

Where is the passion? The love of our chosen subject? Have we been assimilated into some kind of Grey 1990 esque limbo where nothing gets done unless some government is prepared to pay for it?

Are you aware of the power of commercialism? Micro Transactions? Take a look at Railworks2 some time. That has a combined DLC catalogue of nearly 600 pounds and yet the base system is about 24 pounds.

For the love of mike man plug in a Sherman/ Firefly and a bloody Tiger/Panther and you will rake in some (apparently) much required funds. You could just make it a pay and play addon.

Hell surely the military could benefit form learning how their metal monsters evolved? But if not then leave it out of the full package! surely the dongle which has an iron grip on the code would let you control what aspects remain locked / unlocked?

No ?

No

well I guess I had to get it of my chest and I just couldn't keep it under control any longer. I do appreciate your efforts and it is a very good simulation but dam some times I just want some good clean and dirty clanky metal fun!

And the first one to come in here and say 'If you turn of stabilization etc etc' will get my virtual boot up there prostate!

That's like saying if you drive a Pontiac fire bird in first gear its just like driving a ford KA

If the engine is there to handle it why not put on a shell its just a model no one will think less of you in the morning.

If you like you could donate some of the funds to the Bovington Tank museum and do it as a historic add on. I know they could use the money for fixing the 131 they have.

And it would get you some much earned publicity with an as far as I can see untapped fan base.

Do you have a marketing team? Have they all got the same colour suits do they say no a lot ? What kind of pizza do they eat?

These are all questions that run through my diseased little mind and feel free to shoot them down. This thread will probably go the same way every other similar suggestion has in the past but like I said its a New year and I am spending my one free rant thus

TATA!

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And the first one to come in here and say 'If you turn of stabilization etc etc' will get my virtual boot up there prostate!

That's like saying if you drive a Pontiac fire bird in first gear its just like driving a ford KA

If the engine is there to handle it why not put on a shell its just a model no one will think less of you in the morning.

If you like you could donate some of the funds to the Bovington Tank museum and do it as a historic add on. I know they could use the money for fixing the 131 they have.

And it would get you some much earned publicity with an as far as I can see untapped fan base.

Do you have a marketing team? Have they all got the same colour suits do they say no a lot ? What kind of pizza do they eat?

TATA!

Few things are as annoyiny as some Green around the gills upstart ranting about what needs to be changed in the SB. Those of us that played sb1 for 5 or 6 years waiting patiently for ProPe to be released have little sympathy for your situation. A main reason Myself and other Long time players are still here is because of the small dedicated community atmosphere, and unparalled support from Esim to bring us this one of a kind Gem of a sim.

Quality over quantity in both community size and the sim itself is the cornerstone of the civilian market for this sim.

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Ok I take your point and it was not unexpected that some one would make it. But I think your taking my comments a little more personally than it was intended.

Next?

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I'm not sure what the problem actually is.

Did you not read the product description before you parted with your cash?

Where did it say "popularist all things to all people simulation with AFVs from the last 70 years represented"?

It claims to fill a niche and does it well. If it wasn't the niche you wanted then I'm afraid you probably shouldn't have spent the money.

Personally I know that current ADF tank crews have interest in their lineage and traditions, visiting our museum is part of the course. They certaily don't need Matilda IIs, Sentinals, Centurions modelled as its the current kit they train on and need to train to meet, not Tiger Is coming through some timewarp.

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I'm not sure what the problem actually is.

Did you not read the product description before you parted with your cash?

Where did it say "popularist all things to all people simulation with AFVs from the last 70 years represented"?

It claims to fill a niche and does it well. If it wasn't the niche you wanted then I'm afraid you probably shouldn't have spent the money.

Personally I know that current ADF tank crews have interest in their lineage and traditions, visiting our museum is part of the course. They certainly don't need Matilda IIs, Sentinels, Centurions modeled as its the current kit they train on and need to train to meet, not Tiger Is coming through some time warp.

Again a fair point but at no point have I said that I am unhappy with the product or the money I spent. And I have not expressed any 'Problem' with the product.

I understand entirely why people are happy with it I am just pointing out another market of opportunity and source of funds to aid in overall development given the current economic climate all options should be considered in business should they not?

I and others have and are actually complimenting this package by stating that it does what it does brilliantly and that it would be the perfect frame to achieve so much more to the benefit of a much more diverse field of interest. It inspires us to want more is perhaps the phrase?

And as money is apparently one hurdle I am merely presenting one possible future solution.

As its not open source (And I respect that) the only way to get anything is to ask is it not? As the option to alter or change anything myself is not available.

I should also point out I am not expecting nor demanding anything so lets clear that one up right now.

I am if nothing else simply stimulating a debate, isn't that what a FORUM is for?

Despite Nils's comments to the contrary it does seem that any attempt to point out potential changes or additions seems to draw out they A-typical 'if you don't like it bugger off response?'

Should Nils run all his customers through some Forum Vetting system before he considers any prospective sale, to ensure that they meet with the forums approval?

Is this some kind of exclusive club where only the faithful and long term committed are entitled to express themselves?

Surely new ideas and innovation are also the back bone of all our greatest military developments and achievements?

And no I am not suggesting and neither did I suggest that the military should train with a view to combating their historical predecessors merely that they or perhaps future historians (students) might gain some insight and understanding of how the machines they or their respective militaries fight in and defend them with now, evolved and just how much more advanced things are. Don't they teach history at officer training what are museums for?

All that I discussed could be developed in parallel and not even made part of the Military package.

Back on topic. Take a look over at SimHq and the article on World of Tanks that is one bloody big community out there that are clearly interested in Armored warfare and that product is only really a greatly skewed nod in the direction that Steel Beasts could profit from filling.

Should E-sim ignore new markets simply because a few individuals like things the way they are?

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Of late I have noticed that e-sim has when confronted with suggestions regarding potential enhancements or additions to this simulator, given what seems to be becoming the standard response.

Just as well I could point out that time and again I have been confronted with basically the same questions that I answered countless times before. At the very least I take it from your remark that I have remained consistent in my answers for the past years. You may not have meant this the be a compliment, but I take it as one. :)

As long as the fundamental business situation doesn't change, I wonder what makes you expect changes in the answer?

Anyway, I suppose you are venting in an attempt that goes a bit deeper than the "polite standard response", so here you go:

I suppose we could try to change our business model in favor of WW2 stuff and micro transactions, but I think I also mentioned since 1998 that our personal interest is not WW2 but contemporary armor, partly as a matter of personal preference and professional background, partly because WW2 has been approached by so many other game developers, partly because it would mean to give up the one reliable and established market for training solutions for which we fought with nails and teeth for the better part of a decade.

Like it or not, the harsh reality is that eSim Games follows a business strategy that isn't compatible with your ideas of how we should run our business. We do what we think is best for the long-term interests of the company, and the #1 priority is to survive as a business entity. The Game Developers' Cemetery is full of companies and teams that didn't make it past their fifth year, and especially independent developer teams have, on average, a life expectancy that approximates that of fruit flies.

Our experience with game publishers hasn't been particularly encouraging to put it mildly, and both were said to be the nicer guys of the lot. Game sales are extremely cyclic and unpredictable by nature. You invest money for years, and if you don't get back your investment within three months after releasing a title chances are that you are and will remain financially screwed. Excuse me, but if there is a viable alternative of government agencies who will honor contracts to the letter, who enter long-term software maintenance contracts with the resulting stable and reliable cash flow to allow us to plan for two to five years ahead, I will pick that option. I may be self-employed, but I still like to not be awake at night worrying how I might pay the dues next month or whether I may just digging an even deeper hole with a certain development decision that will cost more money with unclear chances for a positive return on investment.

Maybe you consider this mindset as entrepreneurial cowardice. I call it due diligence and responsible decision-making. Four people are now working full-time for eSim, another four are part-time working on Steel Beasts. My job as "the commercial department" brings the responsibility to make sure that all of them can rely on regular payments without the need to get the company owners into irresponsible, personal debt. Unlike certain high-paid business executives I do not take this responsibility lightly. We created jobs that exceed the quality of burger-flipping considerably, and I have every intention to maintain these jobs for as long as possible.

I have been ridiculed by personal friends as a daydreamer for working on a crazy thing like Steel Beasts in the first place, fought against nay-sayers in the military that PC based training tools would never be a viable alternative. I can certainly endure forum wisecracks on the sidelines suggesting how I should run our business. But I expect that, even if you can't accept my decisions, at least you will respect them for what they are - expressions of my free will, accepted responsibility for the well-being of all the people who are financially dependent on eSim's commercial success, and the pursuit of happiness by following a certain business vision.

I hope that you can learn to accept Steel Beasts for what it is instead of concentrating on what it doesn't even attempt to be. My yardstick to measure success is how closely SB Pro approximates the ideal, a comprehensive and thorough survey simulation of contemporary, armor/mech centric combined arms combat at tactical level. If you can't subscribe to this end-state, I suppose the resulting product isn't your cup of tea.

The addons we do get whilst appreciated and finished to a very good fine standard do seem to be a tad random and I can only assume to be some 'wouldn't it be nice if' idea from some grey suited bureaucrat who was filling in a feed back sheet to kill off another hour of his/her day.

You have a strange way to express the appreciation that you claim to be feeling. I concede that there indeed is some element of randomness in the additions, but since you aren't interested in the background because it's "the standard answer" that you get "from all the other software houses" I'm not sure if you are actually interested in a true exchange of opinions.

I'm not saying that we have no other choice. Everybody always has a choice (the question is whether you can accept the consequences). But I think I made clear what our goals are, and where our priorities lie. The rest follows from those fundamental decisions.

Limitations that we experience in our freedom to develop "other stuff" which is less dictated by our army customers' training requirements can only be overcome by growing our development capacity. I think I said this as early as 2006 that we would like to take a bit of time off to hire additional programmers, but that we couldn't do this before approximately 2009 due to formal and informal business commitments. Okay, it took us a year longer than anticipated in 2006. Staying the course in our business was at times like wild water rafting with an oil tanker. I am extremely proud that we managed to fulfill these commitments and delivered about 75% of what was promised during that time, and I am very happy to report that with the expansion of the team we have now prepared the ground to service the demands of our customers better than ever before.

eSim Games is my first business, and I am not ashamed to confess that we had to learn how to run our business on the go. We overestimated certain trends and underestimated others, that's just the nature of running a business. Not every plan survives contact with reality. All in all I think that things turned out remarkably well. Steel Beasts has made tremendous progress from its early days to now in pursuit of the ideals that I described above.

We managed to follow an idea that formed in 2002, at a point where it was everything from clear whether the whole venture would actually work out. The development path that we took may appear be a bit winded, labyrinthine even to some. Consider a streak of lightning that follows the path of least resistance through the atmosphere; it ultimately follows a straight and simple course to channel two points of differing electric potentials. Just like that, we have an idea where we want to go, and a dynamic business environment represents the convective currents of an atmosphere that force occasional twists and turns in the direction. Still, by looking at where Steel Beasts was in 2002 and comparing it with what it is today, even a casual observer should be able to make out that all in all we have been following a pretty straight course.

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Back on topic. Take a look over at SimHq and the article on World of Tanks that is one bloody big community out there that are clearly interested in Armored warfare and that product is only really a greatly skewed nod in the direction that Steel Beasts could profit from filling.

Should E-sim ignore new markets simply because a few individuals like things the way they are?

Um no thanks.

As someone recently said of that product:

Might as well be mechwarrior for all the relevance it has to its subject matter. In fact Mechwarrior required more skill (two cents)

I suspect they aren't interested in "Armored warfare" but more a dumbed down arcade version of armoured warfare and if eSim ventured into that space there would no doubt be negative feedback because the product was light years away from what they are used to and well outside their comfort zone.

Besides I have limited free time so I pick the forums I visit with care.

And no, no one vetted me before I joined the forum - just as no doubt they didn't vet you or if we were vetted somehow we both gained acceptance. :)

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Um no thanks.

I suspect they aren't interested in "Armored warfare" but more a dumbed down arcade version of armoured warfare and if eSim ventured into that space there would no doubt be negative feedback because the product was light years away from what they are used to and well outside their comfort zone.

I am not suggesting they move into that field but that it is evidence there is a wider interest out there that given the right hook might bite.

Possibly that is what the intention of the developers if World of tanks was, and I suspect your probably right about a portion of that community but as some on Sim Hq have already said besides myself there are already many that were hoping for something better and feel like the history of Armour deserves something better.

The same applies to T34 versus Tiger and many others that have attempted to deal with pre-cold war Armour and failed.

I and I suspect many others still look for something that matches the level of control and immersion that SB provides, and as I have tried to point out I think it is a very excellent product and I would not have finally parted with my money if I did not think so.

Were not a big community and it seems self defeating to be elitist about a subject that on one level or another we all have an interest.

I guess part of it is that it is frustrating that an engine that ticks so many of the boxes we look for is (apparently) but for the sake of a few models which I am almost certain people would donate for free tantalizingly close to being the Study Sim at least some of us would like to see.

WW1, WW2, Korea you name it there is a big internet out there and not all of us think Tanks should simply feature as the smart bomb / uberboss in some holly wood fantasy shooter or the hapless target of some winged avenger.

Flight sims did it so why cant Armour?

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Just as well I could point out that time and again I have been confronted with basically the same questions that I answered countless times before.

Indeed you have and I have witnessed your answers and always find them like this one to be very articulate and clear.

Perhaps you will forgive me for testing the waters but It just felt like it was time again as things have moved on some since the early days and you yourself seemed to be exploring some pretty radical changes as well.

At least you hinted at them with your posts on integration with other software suites.

At the very least I take it from your remark that I have remained consistent in my answers for the past years. You may not have meant this the be a compliment, but I take it as one. :)

It was certainly not intended to offend, maybe a dig but buy no means offend so by all means you may.

As long as the fundamental business situation doesn't change, I wonder what makes you expect changes in the answer?

Well I guess I interpreted the mention of budgets and such to imply that new sources of ready cash may be something that you would be open too and perhaps that was an error of interpretation. Which you have cleared up nicely with your statement.

I certainly respect you entitlement to earn an honest buck and I have no intention to require nor do I expect you to jeopardize your income or any one else's.

Anyway, I suppose you are venting in an attempt that goes a bit deeper than the "polite standard response", so here you go:

To be honest Ssnake I really didn't expect you to bother hence my caveat at the end of the vent, but I suppose given your previous form and the fact that some people perceive all suggestions of change or alterations as some kind of a call to arms I should have guessed that it would. But I do appreciate the feedback and it is to your credit that you still do so and I hope you take that as genuine given that I to have taken the time to respond despite the hour.

However it was really intended as a general shot across the bows of the community for the sheer hell of it and to see what happens, a troll if you will.

however you have explained your Business strategy and I can see why you feel the way you do. I guess these days of Fruit Fly software houses have made me a little cavalier about software houses and I guess I should commend you for sticking to your guns.

You have a strange way to express the appreciation that you claim to be feeling. I concede that there indeed is some element of randomness in the additions, but since you aren't interested in the background because it's "the standard answer" that you get "from all the other software houses" I'm not sure if you are actually interested in a true exchange of opinions.

Ooops! maybe something got lost in the interpretation there but I am always open to an exchange of opinions as I think I have demonstrated in all my responses. In fact that is precisely what I seek when ever I post. I have no interest in drilling my point down some ones throat least of all here.

But if I must drill home a point let it be this

I am not dissatisfied with this product my only intent is was to encourage and perhaps suggest that it could developed in a more broad direction. Albeit in my own somewhat obtuse fashion :biggrin:

However as you have plainly stated you have no interest in doing this and whilst I perhaps erred by suggesting WW2 vehicles in my post as an example it did seem to me to be a means of generating more revenue which as I said seems to feature largely in many of your responses as a reason for delays In other developments.

ahh well back to the drawing board I guess

IBTL

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Maybe I read more into what you wrote initially than what you actually meant to say, and hence my reply may appear more hostile than your initial message deserves. I'm not against broadening the scope of SB Pro as long as we understand it to focus on the post WW2 period. Even then it must be understood by everybody that armies don't pay for work on military history; budgets are limited to 90% current operational requirements and 10% anticipated developments. To that extent obsolete equipment gets funded only if it is still in use somewhere.

That doesn't mean that we won't tackle it. It just means that we can't address it with the same development pace that we show in other areas. Toi name three recent examples, no army paid us to do the T-55, T-62, or the Challenger 2. Yet we still invested effort there. These are genuine contributions to the SB Pro PE community.

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