Re: Swamp, zombie FPS by Aprone

Hi guys,
So, like everyone here, I think it is fair to say that Swamp is probably one of the greatest audio-games ever created.
It is on par with many sighted games in terms of features and the work that Aprone has invested in creating this masterpiece and developing it into a mainstream equivalent cannot be under-estimated.  This is a game which, if only the funds could be invested, certainly could be something that visually impaired and sighted people could play.  However, for all of Aprone’s skill, a graphics designer would be required, and a new interface which could accommodate the sighted aiming most modern shooter-style games feature.  All that would require money, of which I’m sure Aprone certainly could not invest.  That being said, the game is amazing, and reminds me a lot of equivalent console games that my sighted friends play.
I am getting off track here, so, I hope nobody takes offense to what I am about to say, but it needs to be said and some if not many of you will be offended.  Many others have said things similar and I agree with all of you.  This is going to get long, so feel free to skip.  I have been away from Swamp for quite some time due to various reasons, none of which have anything to do with the game itself or anyone on it.
I fired it up the other day and was extremely saddened to see just how few active players were online.
I then visited this forum to maybe see what I could determine about what had gone wrong.
After reading the last couple of pages, it became quite apparent.
Firstly, guys, nothing in life is free.  Absolutely nothing.  If you live under this mentality that it is, you really need to re-think your perspective.  Aprone introduced the pay for play system as I recall to prevent people from cheating.  He created this game absolutely for free, and people ruined that with their antics.
That being said, running a game costs money, and lots of it.  If I also remember, Aprone is running this game out of a server machine out of his house.  That means this machine needs to be on 24/7/365.  Let’s assume that conservatively, the electrical bill is $20.00 a month and could likely be more.  Then there’s an internet connection which must be stable enough to support multiple connections.  If that isn’t the case and Aprone now has this running from a VPS of some sort, then he needs to pay the VPS provider to host his server for him.  Then there is constant maintenance costs – such as if the server machine is a physical unit and has a power supply failure, dead hard drive, Etc.  He has to pay for all that.  That’s just to keep Swamp running.  If none of that is done, then no server, no zombies, no Swamp.
Aprone began this as a free project to give to the community which consequently owes him nothing.  We have all enjoyed this game for years and I for one hope that it will be around for many years to come.  However, if we don’t shape it up, it’s not going to be.
So, regarding a paid account, really guys?  The cost of this game is minimal at best.  The last time I checked it was $12.00 for six months?  That works out to be $2.00 a month…  Nobody who likes the game can afford $2.00 a month?  Really?  I guess you don’t like the game that much then…  Even in other forms of currency that’s a very low cost…  Not only that, but if you don’t log in for a month, it doesn’t use up anything you purchased!  How many other subscription-based services do that?  Has anyone checked out what an average World of Warcraft subscription costs?  How about the latest offerings for Xbox or PS4 Etc.?  I believe an average game is $50.00 and that’s without a subscription fee or membership fee.  So, you know what?  Life isn’t fair and most of us can’t even competitively play mainstream console games.  A game like Swamp is worth money, big time!  How many other audio games can anyone name that are anything like it?  I challenge you all!  List them off!  You all sit here wining that there haven’t been any updates?  Well hmm…  How about I ask you this…  Why should Aprone release updates?
Speaking of development and updates!  Bugs, problems, issues, development, wining, cheaters, hackers, people with nothing better to do with their time but cause problems, people harassing Aprone about every little detail like lost equipment or whatever!  When is the guy supposed to develop for Swamp, much less work on this new RPG that was talked about ages ago.  Aprone is a guy, a man, a person, someone who sleeps, eats and most of all WORKS!  So, for those of you who understand this concept, good for you!  For everyone else!  Work and a life go something like this…  One must go to work, whether they want to go or not because that is how they eat, or pay for costs of running Swamp.  This place of absence occupies probably the average of 8 hours a day.  That doesn’t include getting ready for work, going to work, coming home from work, eating before or after work or any other related activities.  So…again conservatively, let’s assume 10 hours a day is spent on work.  The average human is supposed to have 8 hours of sleep a day.  This leaves 6 active hours a day left over for Aprone to do…Aprone things!  Maybe he likes sports, or going to the movies, or hanging out with friends, or maybe even gaming!  Who knows!  I seem to recall he does have a wife… and maybe a family, and if he wants to keep a wife, he will need to spend some time with her once and a while…
With that timetable outlined, have any of you developed anything?  Even a batch file or simple Jaws or NVDA scripts?  If you have, then you know that it eats major amounts of time.  If you haven’t, take it from me, it is a serious time killer!  A complex game like Swamp would take some serious time to work on!  And as for bugs!  It isn’t like a developer can just turn on his magic expect-bug Illuminator, type a couple lines of code and poof!  No more bugs!  Bugs take for ever to resolve sometimes.  They take time for testing, experimentation, trying solutions, re-working the problem, Etc.  Then you want new features, which often introduces all kinds of new kinds of complexity.  This is all in the 6 hour window daily, maybe a few more hours on weekends that Aprone has to share with, things like, a life?
Now about the wining.  I wish, I mean wish, that I could be the absolute beast of Swamp.  I wish I could be a billion levels and be the Swamp god!  However, I have a life.  It involves things like, working, studying, and a social life.  This means that I will not ever be a Swamp god.  This is ok with me.  I respect those who are.  I would hope that those who are in the position of Swamp Godhood would respect their station for what it is.  To quote the best of Spiderman “with great power comes great responsibility”.  Maybe this means, they could help less Godly people then themselves.  Maybe some people use cheats to get to their lofty heights of Swampish power.  If so, I’m sure Aprone will eventually figure out a way to deal with them.  Even if they did get their levels by cheating, they didn’t really earn it.  For everyone else, who cares!  There are always those on a game who are at the top.  If you don’t cheat, then be proud of your own accomplishments.  Maybe you’re not level 5000 or 50 billion or whatever, does it matter?  Really?  Does that make killing Zombies that much less fun?
Regarding bugs and lost gear.  Have you never died on the game?  Nothing is perfect and it sucks to lose everything, whether because of a failed internet connection, zombie overload or game issues.  Do you think Aprone has the time to accommodate ever lost item or issue?  The guy gets $2.00 a month from you for this!  Can you buy anything for $2.00?  A soda maybe?  Really guys?  Come on! I get that bugs causing equipment loss are frustrating, but be patient.  Aprone has fixed many bugs before and done amazing things with the game.
I am at the end of my rant, and it takes a lot to get me on to a tirade like this, but for the love of Swamp guys!  Firstly, if you haven’t renewed your account in a while, for the love of the game or Aprone or even the community as a whole, pay your $12.00!  Show the guy some love!  Second, quit the wining!  You think anyone has time to weed through this mess of posts and negativity?  Third, enjoy the game!  Because there is nothing else like it and I don’t expect there ever will be.  Finally, Aprone created this game for the community.  Why can’t we all as a whole just get back on the game, either as a new or old character and make the game what it once was?  You’re all lucky Aprone is a lot nicer than me.  Because if I were him, I would have pulled the plug on Swamp and deleted my Skype account a long time ago!  Let’s show him what kind of a community we are, unless we’re all just a bunch of pampered, entitled children.  Maybe Swamp 3.7 will happen!

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