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Old May 30th, 2012, 16:44:47   #1
lindelu
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Funcom employee Monthly Development Update: May 2012

The Gridstream Productions team recently celebrated ten years of bringing Live Streamed Entertainment to Rubi-Ka! As a development team we're very proud of them, and we had the pleasure of attending the in-game party held on the glass floor of Reet's Retreat – the very place where the GSP organization was founded! It was great seeing so many familiar faces, and new ones! I had a great time talking with everyone, and I wish to thank GSP for their devotion these past years. Happy 10th birthday GSP!

The 11th AO Anniversary
We're also really proud to have been running for eleven years this June! To celebrate, we've created some new phats, and for the first time ever we are going to offer a one of a kind Real Life Vinyl Doll, hand painted by one of our artists, OJ “Flaptoot” Kielland! The details on how you can win this, alongside the dates for the in-game celebration will be announced in June via our community outlets.

We're expecting the Desert Rider to make frequent appearances in Newland Desert during these festivities!

The Global Market Interface (GMI)
Based on the feedback that we've received during beta testing, we've completed a first round of improvements, focusing on usability. The GMI is a very powerful interface and we want to ensure that you as a player can use its full potential.

You will be able to see these improvements in the next Test Live update!

We've already begun planning for other well-suggested features like supporting multiple items per deposit and allowing partial name search. In order not to delay the release of 18.5.0, these features will be included in one of the following patches.

System Changes
This month we've done many alterations behind the scenes to allow for smoother implementation of the proposed systems changes, including back end work to our internal tools platform as well as optimizing existing features, enabling us greater flexibility in the work ahead. You may have seen the after effects of this on the Test Server, at one point over a thousand Nano Formulas were broken as a result of altering the code! Macrosun and Vhab of course saved the day again. (:

To accompany the removal of pet hunt pet timeouts, we've improved the usability of pets and their default behavior, although we feel this is quite a big change that needs additional testing, so we've moved it in with the New Player Experience patch instead of the upcoming patch. This feature will allow the master to better control the behavior of their pets!

The Engine
While in development, the new Dreamworld engine has been running off a separate test environment including the server and databases, and in May we've continued our efforts to create a working stand alone client as a first step towards external beta.

As I understand it, this work is not particularly fun to do, and involves resolving many conflicts between the old AO code and the new. We're very pleased with the progress made however, and I expect another month or so before we have results.

Game Performance Issues
Recently we've received multiple reports of lag occurring in-game! But with help from our Operations team we've now managed to locate and resolve what we believe to be the cause for these issues. We are very sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused you during your play time, and we're thankful of the extensive reports you were able to provide to us!

The Next Update
All of our efforts this past month have been going towards getting this update to Live.

The preliminary release date for 18.5.0 is 12th of June! This update will include game improvements and bug fixes, a new log-in and character selection screen, the new global market interface, and of course the new birthday loot! Preliminary update release notes are available on the Test Live section of the forums, and a conclusive version will be coming soon along with the finalized release date.


I hope the AO Anniversary party will be just as great! See you all there!

Kindly,
Lindelu

PS. Thank you Sprklygrrl for providing the screen shots!


Waldgeist edit: German Translation
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Old May 30th, 2012, 16:45:34   #2
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Old May 30th, 2012, 16:49:33   #3
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Old May 30th, 2012, 16:50:40   #4
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Old May 30th, 2012, 16:51:08   #5
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Old May 30th, 2012, 16:52:09   #6
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first
First to quote the first!
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Old May 30th, 2012, 16:52:20   #7
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Old May 30th, 2012, 16:57:30   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lindelu View Post
Based on the feedback that we've received during beta testing, we've completed a first round of improvements, focusing on usability.
Are you telling me that this one sentence took over two weeks to type out, two weeks where a lot of valued players quit the game because of the lack of communication?

I'm sure Funcom has more than enough subscribers to keep this game populated ofcourse, but hey.
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Old May 30th, 2012, 16:58:59   #9
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Old May 30th, 2012, 16:59:27   #10
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Old May 30th, 2012, 17:01:45   #11
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Old May 30th, 2012, 17:03:57   #12
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First to quote the first!
Second to quote the second that quoted the first
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Old May 30th, 2012, 17:06:49   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lindelu View Post
Based on the feedback that we've received during beta testing, we've completed a first round of improvements, focusing on usability.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arguru View Post
Are you telling me that this one sentence took over two weeks to type out, two weeks where a lot of valued players quit the game because of the lack of communication?
I regret that you feel this way, I can only say that I will try to improve my communications further.
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Old May 30th, 2012, 17:08:46   #14
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Old May 30th, 2012, 17:14:55   #15
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Old May 30th, 2012, 17:27:56   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lindelu View Post
I regret that you feel this way, I can only say that I will try to improve my communications further.
This reminds me of a communication you had with another user, where you also promised to improve your communication. I've seen none of it.

While your Community department will surely disagree, community interaction != a forum post every month or so. It's actually interacting with your users, jumping into hot issues and giving solid answers instead of being intentionally vague.

To put in in perspective you say that you will 'try to improve your communications further'. A great initiative as this be, have you actually put any thought into HOW you want to do this? I think we can all agree that the lack of any sound regarding the new GMS is a bad example of Customer Relations. That said I can also think of a few other notable examples where Funcom has too long delayed to explain or at least communicate regarding hot issues. Think of the ninja-patch where the novictum-thingy became NODROP. Or more recently, broken Test Live transfers. Also you're more than welcome to click here and look through your history. A solid answer as to which a specific person has been suspended has never been given to them, even after numerous contact.

These are just a few examples where FC communication has notably failed. I'm not taking it out on you personally, you're just one person and I don't particularly blame you individually. However Funcom as a company is doing a lot of things terribly wrong, and you're losing customers because of it. And as I've said a few months back in the itemstore discussion with Ilaliya: customers who quit your game because of these issues do not return for TSW either.

Pick up the slack, Funcom. We've all grown used to an outdated engine, unbalanced classes, parry not working, etc. It's the new changes we need your communication on (think itemstore - which made me cancel personally -, think new GMS, think removing player cities, etc.)
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Old May 30th, 2012, 17:34:34   #17
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Old May 30th, 2012, 17:43:12   #18
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Another month. Nothing new.

No word on Parry/Riposte.
Nothing on Rebalance.
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Old May 30th, 2012, 17:51:13   #19
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Old May 30th, 2012, 17:54:04   #20
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