Studio Update Austin
Moving forward with major features for 3.0 such as commodity trading which has been aided by the L.A. Programmers to bring the shopping code rewrite, commodity kiosk and ship persistence to life.
Finished first batch of several usable request for ships.
Work on getting Miles Eckhart fully functional for 3.0 which brings a complex mission giver system that enables reputation gain and more.
Breaking down Levski in order to determine smuggling areas, quest giver locations and where content in general should be placed.
Josh Coons is working on the damage modelling for the Cutlass black. The ship is nearly finished at this stage and only had LODs after to be completed.
PU Animation Team
Updating all usable animations to use the new usable system which saves on memory and create more unique animations quickly.
Austin also did a mocap shoot to gather animations for picking up crates at different heights and interacting with doors at various transitions.
Ship Animation Team
Wrapping up work on the Cutlass Black and creating zero-g enter and exit animations for the Dragonfly.
Also working on the cockpit experience initiative by adding hit reactions, button presses and overall cockpit layout.
Bring more parts of diffusion online and integrating it with various services currently being used such as friends, analytics, authentication and presence.
Next stage is moving to the larger more complex services such as persistence cache, game server management/matchmaker, and persistence database.
The game server and client are also very close to being converted to diffusion.
Optimisations using a new technique called ‘Router Biasing’ to give more control over bandwidth management.
Focus on 2.6.3 for the first part of the month.
Work is now focused the game dev branch and testing the PU and Squadron 42.
Spent time with Turbulent to work on improvements for Spectrum and updating the Evocati list and PTU waves.
Release of Spectrum version 0.3.3
Nested threads were an addition to this release
Planning to transform this into a view option so you can decide how to view a specific threads or all threads
Looking into how unread status will work in nested threads and how to improve that as well as dual staff tracking
Now able to flag a post for moderation within a public forum as well as within orgs
Progress on mobile support for keyboard system
Working on 0.3.4
Looking to add some refinement on how tags are used in subforums so you can jump directly from a global community to a specific tag within a channel
Second part of this is allowing you to bookmark a tag just like it was a channel itself
Adding more filters and working on the search subsystem
This features set from search will power a new mini profile so you can jump directly to posts from a specific player directly from the mini profile
Working on virtual lists which will allow them to render what you see plus a buffer saving on performance and having everybody present in the lobby list
They will also use virtual lists to fix the problem in chat lobbies where you can’t jump directly to a message then go back in time they’ll do this by changing the history mechanism for lobbies
Working on an overlay between the game and Spectrum so they can have an overlay that is over the game and your desktop client synchronized
Working on PM groups so you can have more of a party system for specific lobbies
Doing some infrastructure changes by moving the platform to a new set of hardware, this may result in some minor downtime
Behind the Scenes
Mike Jones has the longest title at CIG and is responsible for all hardware and infrastructure which is all custom designed
The introduction of a tri-build system full of VMs maintain stability though there is huge competition for resources and traffic; more than any other game that Mike Jones has worked upon, thus divide and conquer is the way to go
Three more hosts were added to isolate the tri-build and decrease resource contention in handling these divided up smaller pieces
Services are hosted externally for the flexibility and scalability without large capital investments, hence it's requiring the expansion of our build system
The process of adding an additional enclosure, racking the servers, loading and configuring the software is an interesting one and often requires fastidious cable management, but it's worth gaining room to grow