NighteShayde's Bug Report How-To
Posted On: November 15th, 2010
WHY SHOULD I READ THIS?
Because the Bug Reporting Form is your source to let us know when you encounter a problem in the game – and we do want to know! But often we receive reports that say things like,
“I reported a bug, but you didn’t fix it” or “You can report it but Turbine doesn’t care” or “I sent this bug an hour ago and I’m still waiting for help”.
In fact, we do care, and we read all of your reports.
We DON’T want you to feel frustrated or think that your concerns aren’t being addressed. Most importantly, we DO want to make sure you can find and access the right tools and channels for reporting each kind of issue, and that when you do need help, you know how to get it.
Today we’re going to talk about the bug reporting form, how to use it, how not to use it, and other helpful tips about bug reporting!
Here’s the bug reporting page: http://ddobugs.turbine.com?task=ticket
but take a moment to read the guidelines while you’re here!
Whenever you open the Bug Reporting Form, it says the following in big, bold letters at the very top:
“IF YOU NEED HELP, please do not use this form.
Use one of these other options to receive timely assistance”
Using the bug reporting form for things other than reporting bugs can actually delay the help you need because you’re asking for help in the wrong place! This is why it’s so important to understand how the tool works, who sees your bug report, and what information is the best to put in the form…
The Basics of Bug Reporting
Here are the basics (short version) of what you need to know about bug reporting:
What makes a bug report helpful?:
There are detailed guidelines below, but the short answer is – give us contact information and the best detail you can manage. Always tell us as much about where in the game you are that you can, and exactly what happened. The most helpful bugs are the ones with good STR (steps to reproduce) and especially ones where the person has repeated the situation and gotten the same results (although we don’t recommend you do this if your error involves spending Turbine points because while we appreciate detailed reports, QA cannot help you recover points you may spend to reproduce an issue).
What happens when I submit my report?:
Your report goes to the Quality Assurance (QA) team. They are read, processed, investigated and tested. If your issue should have gone to Technical Support or to a GM or to Account Management, we try to let you know where you need to file the report and let you know that your report to QA will not help to get your issue solved.
If you’ve reported an actual bug, then it’s going to be checked, tested and added to a queue. Bug investigating and fixing takes time and development. Just because you reported it last week does NOT mean it will get fixed the next day or the next week – that’s just not how it works. We have your report, it is getting the appropriate attention, please be patient, we will get to it.
Where do bug reports go?:
Bugs do not go to GM’s. Don’t submit bug reports that say “I need help right now, I’m waiting in game for you to help me!” If you need help or need a human response, submit a help ticket. Tickets go to GMs, bug reports do not.
Your reports go to the Quality Assurance (QA) team. They do NOT go directly to Billing, or Customer Service, or Game Support, or Technical Support, or Forum Support, or Designers, or Developers, or Artists, or Management, CEOs, WB or anyone else.
They to go QA and they stay in QA to be read, processed and investigated. On the other hand, they go to (and are read by),real, live, breathing people, each and every report. And when you get a note saying something like “Thank you for your report” or “Please report this to Account Management”, that means a real, live, breathing person has personally sent you an answer, not a computer, not an automated response system, but one of us.
This form is for reporting bugs only. Bug reports are read and investigated by the QA department during normal business hours, Monday-Friday 9am-6pm EST.
How NOT to use the bug form:
The following are examples of things you should NOT use the form for:
Don’t ask for help in the game via the form
If you need help, contact a GM through Game Support. If you’re stuck in a corner and can’t get out, if a quest objective didn’t tick off, if a required NPC didn’t spawn, if you have issues with your in-game things, if somebody is calling you names, if a plat farmer is sending you spam — then contact a GM first. QA cannot help you with anything in the game, especially things that are happening just to you. The general rule of thumb is, if you need assistance from a human being or you need a timely response to your query, talk to a GM first. This can be done through the Help menu, which is accessed by selecting the ? icon on your menu bar in the game. Choose New Ticket to file a help request.
Don’t use the form to solve a hardware, software or game connectivity problem on your computer
Only the Technical Support forums or the Technical Support team can help you with these kinds of issues. If you are having a hardware or software issue, or you can’t run the game and don’t know why, then you probably want to look at the technical support page on the website: http://support.turbine.com
Don’t use the form to fix your account or inquire about your Turbine points
Only Account Management can help you with account issues or Turbine points. If you are having problems with your subscription, or your game account, or if your account was downgraded, or for any issues with the DDO store and turbine points, you should contact Account Management. Visit the Account Support page on our website: http://support.turbine.com
Don’t send feedback.
The best place for voicing your opinions is the gameplay feedback and the suggestion forums . The Community Team reads these forums and passes your opinions directly to the developers. The developers themselves often read these forums, too. On the forums, your opinions are very likely to be heard. Any bug report we receive that is a) an opinion (good or bad), b) a rant, c) an idea, or d) a question about plans, updates or current events in the game will probably receive a thank you and a suggestion to post it on the forums. Sending non-bugs through the bug reporting form has the effect of making it take much longer for us to read the bug reports every day, all without conferring any appreciable benefit upon you. Send your opinions and ideas to the place they will do the most good, because Turbine does want to see them!
So, what DOES bug reporting do for me?
That’s a lot of stuff that I can’t do with a bug report, so how does this do me any good?
What reporting a bug does, first of all, is get our grateful thanks. We appreciate the care and effort our players put in to help improve the game. Which is the second thing it does – improve the game. We can’t fix bugs we don’t know about. We can’t solve problems we haven’t found. And, let’s face it, it’s a BIG game, with a LOT of programming. We have very comprehensive and careful testing, but sometimes things slip through the cracks or something we couldn’t predict causes an issue. It happens. So when you find these things and tell us, we know they’re there and can try to fix them, and your gaming experience gets better. It’s as simple as that.
But if you can’t fix the problem with my character, is this a waste of my time?
We don’t think so. In fact, if you’ve found a bug in the game that we can fix, chances are instead of it becoming one of those “been around forever” issues that interrupt your game play, reporting it so that we can fix it will make yours and your friend’s gaming experience more enjoyable. Also, what sometimes seems like a little issue can be the crux of a much bigger issue and maybe you found it when nobody else did! When we can identify and fix the tiny issue, it may have the result of leading to a lot more solutions.
How do I know if I found a bug or if I need customer service?
As for knowing the right reporting tool to use, there are several ways to figure this out.
1. Check The Known Issues List
It’s possible the bug you’ve encountered is something we’re already aware of – and may even have a workaround to provide you so you don’t have to be impacted by it! The Known Issues List is available in the community forums by clicking here! It is updated for every game release (and sometimes more often if a new and urgent issue arises between game updates). If you do happen to find what you’ve experienced in the known issues list, then you don’t need to submit a bug report on that, but thanks for looking into it!
2. Read the community sites for other affected players
People use MyDDO and the forums to discuss all sorts of things, including any issues they find in the game or bugs that people have encountered. Chances are you’ll find a blog or discussion thread about the issue you’re having, and find out that someone may have already reported it! Also, don’t forget to check out the known issues list that is kept updated on the forums. NOTE: Don’t use the forums or blogging site to submit your bug reports! It’s ok to talk about a bug you found if you’re not sure about it or looking for advice from other players about how to write your bug report, but don’t expect that making a forum post means that the QA department has been notified. We cull the bug reports sent to us by the bug form, not forum threads, and posting it to the forums-only makes it harder for us to track and investigate! The form gives us valuable details about your character that are often critical to helping us find and solve the bug!
3. Ask other players
If the same thing that you are concerned about is happening to other players, or if other players know about it happening, then it might be a bug and a report could be helpful. If it is only happening to your character or your account and nobody else says they’ve seen it happen, then chances are you should be talking to game support or technical support and it’s probably not a game bug. Remember, just because something isn’t working correctly for you, that doesn’t necessarily mean it is a bug in the game. There are so many reasons that you could be experiencing it that we can’t even list them all, but just a few of the bigger ones are –
a. you had an error in your download
b. you’ve encountered lag that caused an odd reaction
c. you have drivers or systems on your computer that need to be updated. Also, if you come across something that is happening to maybe 3 people, and not happening to the other 100 people in the area who are doing the same activity, it could be that all three people have encountered the same individual error – it does happen. But if it was a game bug, it would probably be happening to a lot more players and we would be aware of it very quickly. Try to keep that in mind – not every unexpected thing that you encounter in an mmo is a game bug.
4. Try to make it happen again
This is called getting an STR (Steps To Reproduce). The better the notes we have on how an issue occurred, the faster we can reproduce and test it, and the faster the report will be able to be put into a queue of issues to get fixed, which is, after all, the goal of reporting a bug – improving the game! ALL bugs go through QA,every single one, no matter how they’re found or to whom they’re reported, so sending them directly to us is the best way to get them to where they really need to go.
We know that some issues can be annoying or frustrating or upsetting, and we know when that happens you really want your opinions and comments to be heard by someone. You really want to know that we’re paying attention to you. Some people have tried to accomplish this by using every available form to send their report to everyone they can find. Others have chosen to try submitting a bug over and over again. Unfortunately, neither of these things will help you get the issue resolved – in fact when people do this, those reports usually just get deleted after we’ve received the original request, because duplicates prevent us from getting to everyone else’s bug reports. The best way to get your voice heard is to:
• Use the correct reporting tool
• Put as much detail and information as you can manage into your report
• Make sure we have contact information in case we need more information to figure out the problem, and avoid abusive reports full of profanity. Our Code of Conduct and Community Guidelines state very clearly that you must not verbally abuse each other, or our staff. No matter how mad you are, if you want to be heard, calling people names rarely accomplishes this and often your very good, very valid point is lost if it’s buried in a string of abuse.
Here’s a few useful tips and links to make understanding the bug reporting process even easier for you:
Reporting a Game Location:
- Type /loc in your chat box.
- Highlight the result.
- Press Ctrl+C to copy.
- Click in your email or on your reporting form. Press Ctrl+V to paste.
- Alternately, right click to paste.
Providing Contact Information:
- When you put contact information in your bug report, the report information goes to QA. It does NOT go to marketing. NOBODY but QA sees your report or gets your contact info. If you don’t give us contact info, we cannot thank you for your report, we cannot ask you for more information, we cannot tell you if there is a solution already in place for your issue. To your point of view, you will click ‘submit’ and that’s the last you’ll ever hear of it, regardless of what you reported. If you want your report to be acknowledged, then let us know how to contact you. You will NOT get spam. You will NOT get advertisements. You will NOT get anything but possible contact from QA. Nothing is sadder to us then when we receive reports from people asking how to get help with a genuine issue, and there is no contact information in the report. We feel bad for them as we’re clicking on delete because there’s nothing we can do to help them. Don’t be that person - please provide contact info for us!
Other Great Links & Guides
Known Issues Thread: http://www.ddo.com/forums/forumdisplay.php/73-Release-Notes-Known-Issues
DDO Release Notes: http://www.ddo.com/en/game/release-notes
Report a Bug form: http://ddobugs.turbine.com?task=ticket
And last, but NEVER least, we want to thank you for reading this, and for being willing to volunteer to submit a bug report. Our goal is to find and fix as many bugs as we can, and the bug reports we receive from the community are a big help. The support we receive from our fans and players really does make a great deal of difference to us, and it’s your enthusiasm for making the game better that gives us the drive to work towards answering all you send us!