I disagree about the media thing here. The media is provided by TGC to show off GG to new users and give them something to use. It would be far better if that media was optimised from the get go and also give less chance of bad reviews. Not everyone is that committed to making games that they feel the need to work on every aspect of it (graphics, scripting, sound etc.) That is what the store and other online offerings are for. I think sometimes the committed people around here (including myself on occasion), expect a little too much from the casual users. Sure, you shouldn't try to knock out a steam game within a month of getting GG, but it will always happen, some people will do it regardless.
I also disagree about reviewers mocking games with stock assets. Sure, they do. But the stock assets aren't the issue here, the rubbish games are. If the games were good, playable and engaging, most people wouldn't give a fig for the stock media thing. But as they generally aren't, the stock media is just another thing to point and laugh at.
Saying media shouldn't be updated when it has known performance issues is like saying leave the bit of code that's slowing things down as it's only stock code. I can understand people not wanting to use stock assets, but also respect that many (probably the majority) do. At least for some items. I'm sure most have a mixture of default, store and custom. Default foliage is one that many people use regularly. It should be updated to work better. It can only improve peoples perceptions of GG if the media that comes with it runs well and doesn't slow to a crawl by spraying a few trees about. Also, I haven't seen too much decent foliage around either. I have some purchased stuff, but in honesty mostly (not all of course), it's not the best and I rarely even look at it.
Here, getting back on the subject, is what I think GG needs this year.
I think this is a big thing. I'm always finding some issue at some point that slows or stops progress. All known bugs should be squashed.
Improve what we have.
Instead of barrelling onto the next feature, lets get the ones we have working to a more acceptable level.
Lighting for instance, one of the draws for moving to DX11 in the first place. It's improved from where is was, but it's still far, far from great.
PBR, again looks okay, but still nothing close what we see in other games out there. I wasn't a fan of this being introduced really, I would have been happy with DNS as long as the lighting improved. But we have it now and as such it needs to be better, or what is even the point of it?
Water. How many conversations have users had about this? Having multiple levels and water boxes etc. I remember Lee once talking about flowing rivers and streams. He even took pictures of a river to get some ideas at the time! What do we have after all these years? One water plane.
Terrain. I almost hate to mention it, as the last terrain update for me made it worse. I can safely say I haven't really used the terrain painting tool since. It looks awful. Oh and I hear the tweak to get the terrain scaling to height and will have a look. However, why is it that it isn't default? Why do I have to go change setting to get it to work as it did before? Seems wacky to me, certainly not user friendly as GG is pushed as. It's probably a performance thing. Talking of which, it's about time the terrain was de-hogged
Standalone. Everyone knows there are issues. A game making utilities focus should be on making stable games. Get it up to snuff. I hate how it works presently. Whatever github issues are listed should be worked on. Now, I have defended this in the past as GG is work in progress and it makes sense to get the standalone sorted when all is pretty much set in stone. However, that is never going to happen and as such the standalone needs some TLC.
As stated above, menus, GG standalone menus remind me of a Spectrum menu from the 80's. Also, why on earth do we have to provide an image for every resolution? We should provide the highest version, then GG should scale the rest to suit. It makes it more cumbersome than it needs to be and adds bloat to an already pretty big file.
Time is a ticking and progress marches on. Ray tracing is now a thing in games and of course it is DX12, so we are already falling behind once again. Fair enough, it's not a big thing yet and performance is not what gamer's want apparently. However, it is brand new and as such fits the usual product cycle. The next cards will be streamlined better and performance will start shooting up. In just a few years we will probably be starting to wonder how we ever played games that weren't ray traced
SPECS: Ryzen 1700 CPU. Nvidia 970GTX. 16 Gig Memory. Win 10.