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  1. 103 likes
    I decided to resign from the Wurm Online development team. This was not due to any specific event, but instead a much longer sequence of events and general disagreement with deep-rooted policies in place for the Wurm Online team. I joined the team to make progressive changes for the game, and fix long standing issues with existing systems. The priest rework was a major accomplishment in that regard, overhauling a major system of the game into a much healthier state. However, I truly feel that the most significant issues with the game cannot be fixed through code. The common theme between everything that caused my resignation can be traced to one aspect: Communication. The first part would be development communication to the players. Certain features and development goals are kept secret with poor reason. Major changes can be implemented with players reading about them during the patch notes while the server is down. Without going into detail, Tower Chaining was one such feature that was nearly mishandled in this regard. This type of secrecy in the development leads to anxiety for players. What is the future fate of Epic? Should players continue playing there? If they place a new deed on Elevation, is there a possibility of the map being reset shortly after? How much heads up will be given? All these questions stem from the fact that there is no official statement for plans on the future of Epic. Everything is being done behind closed doors and leads the community to speculate. The players don’t know if there’s a plan for Epic at all. Making sure that content is complete before announcing it is one thing. Leaving the community in a state of anxiety without giving them something to look forward to is a whole different beast. There doesn’t need to be a set date, there doesn’t need to be a specific timeline. If something gets delayed, there was a reason. State the reason and trust the community to support it. Everyone in this community just wants the game to get better, but get kept at arm’s length due to fear of having them bark up a storm when something doesn’t get done. If you communicate clearly, and speak to your players like you’re having a conversation with a human instead of calming an angry consumer, you’ll see a much better response. The second part is an extension of the first, which is constraints imposed on staff when it comes to communicating with players. It was very recent that I received a discord PM regarding someone wondering who they should contact in order to report someone. I asked in the general staff channel if there was anyone around who could help this player. It got resolved, but not without it being made clear that type of communication to players is frowned upon. The expectation, being a developer and not someone who handles moderation, was to not respond to the inquiry at all. This is just a recent example, but this dates all the way back to when I first started. My communications with players seemed to have gone under incredible scrutiny. I remember instances where I was urged not to join specific chat channels or discord servers. I remember getting an absolutely insane amount of flak for appearing on stream without proper notification ahead of time. I remember reporting an issue and being told I shouldn’t even be bringing it up because it’s not part of being a developer. I remember having an exploit reported directly to me, bringing it up in the development chat, and then being chastised for having handled the bug report directly instead of redirecting them to the forums. These events all added up seemed to have painted me as hostile in the team. Like I was somehow breaking the natural order of things or overruling someone else’s duty. If someone comes to me with an issue, I shouldn’t have to judge whether I should attempt to resolve it or not. I shouldn’t be expected to ignore the message entirely and give the player no direction. Players have no interest in jumping through hoops to get something done “correctly” - it should just get done. These artificial restrictions, whatever purpose they serve, do nothing but harm the players in the long run and make players reporting issues excessively difficult. The final part is communication about GM actions to the general public, and even the players who are subject to the actions. This has nothing to do with GM rulings themselves. Instead, my primary point of complaint here is the communication to the players and general public when rulings are made. The lack of communication allows the players on the other end of the ruling to spin the narrative to paint corruption and bias into the decisions, even if they are not present. This dates all the way back to when Propheteer was banned and there was only the single statement made about it. From the GM team, there was no general statement as to why one of the most prominent players in the game was banned. Instead, it was handled behind closed doors and Propheteer was able to release his own statements to the player base, spinning the narrative to suit his perspective. If a clear, informative statement was made saying “Propheteer has been banned for this reason and this is the evidence we have against him” the whole situation would have gone much smoother. This translates to all decisions. When a PvP ban or raid ban is announced, it’s just announced then lifted some time later. Updates on the progress and expected timeframe would help settle the minds of players. Updates similar to “The bug has been found and fixed, and will be patched in the next update. When the update is live, we will ensure the bug has been fixed and lift the ban.” You can even provide non-committal ballparks for when that is. “We expect the update to go live later this week.” If it doesn’t happen, again, like stated before: You have a reason, just state your reason and trust the community to back it. Finally, this should extend to investigation process. Both sides should be heard during a dispute. Too many times have I heard of a player being punished without anyone listening to their perspective of events. Truth can’t be known until both sides are heard, and you can figure out the actual events that happened. For some reason, the players being accused are considered hostile and are never contacted to hear their side of events. GM’s should serve as mediators between players, not executioners of justice for those who do something suspicious. With all of that said, these aren’t the only reasons. Certain events that I’m not at liberty to discuss were also part of my decision. I truly respect the current development team and feel they have the best interests of the game in mind. However, improving the communication and winning your community back to supporting your efforts should be of paramount importance. I wish the best of luck to the future of the game, and hope players enjoy the content I’ve worked on. It’s been a great experience and it pains me to leave, but I feel that the work I do was being consistently tainted by policies and decisions outside my control.
  2. 38 likes
    I was really hoping to just leave this behind me, but this post is just so insulting to me that I feel it's necessary to respond. Evidence is through internal communications. That's protected by NDA. I don't want to air dirty laundry, I just want to leave. If you really want to get into it, then go ahead and start with how I "threw team members under the bus." After you state your side, I'll be willing to state mine with all supporting evidence. You have my permission to share the full conversation we had on December 13th in IRC, if you really want to. However, that does nobody any good. This is by far the most insulting thing in the post. There are literally months of internal communications of Retrograde and other staff actively preventing the suggestions in this thread. Again, it's all protected by NDA, and I'm not looking to really get into it. Wurm isn't going anywhere, but the people that care about it are.
  3. 27 likes
    Libila is here! - Shmeric Greetings Wurmians to the first Valrei International of the new year! I hope your New Year break was great, filled with lots of good times. I’m coming to you live from a whole new country, having moved over the New Year period myself, but enough about me, it’s news time! We’re off with a huge start this year, with the first update of the year due out tomorrow, this includes tweaks to fishing, new journal tiers and more! Let’s check it out Fishing tweaks While we have been quiet over the break, we’ve been actively reading and discussing the fishing update and the necessary tweaks that will be coming. Tomorrows update introduces a whole bunch of QoL adjustments to the system, including better wording of event messages, better catching by clicking, and a lore system similar to cooking that tells you what fish you might catch with your setup and location! We’ve also added all the fishy details to the wiki, with the help of Seedlings and her crew of WA’s (Seriously, their work is insane, I looked at what needed to be done and cried.) A huge thanks to the wiki team for the work they’ve done, and sorry if I was mean! Check out the table with all the info here! https://www.wurmpedia.com/index.php/Fish The next steps Stage 2 of the journal will be coming too, with new tasks, titles and tiers! The journey continues with tasks such as discover an archaeology cache, kill a champion creature, and get 10 skills to 50! We’ll be also introducing the priest branch, which is a separate branch with priest oriented goals, and priest oriented rewards. They can be completed alongside the existing branch but the existing branch may require losing faith, so be warned. The rewards will be different compared to what you're used to seeing, but that's all I'm saying... #mystery Quickbinding One of my most anticipated things coming in tomorrows update is the amazing work Samool has been doing (as usual) on keybinds! With the next update players will be able to bind actions via the right click menu, simply holding down the key they wish to bind to the action. This makes changing keybindings SO much smoother and faster, and also easier to understand for new players. I know I’ll be taking a lot of advantage of this feature! Tap dance redecoration The results were in! A long time ago actually! Team Shark won with a huge majority, and we’re excited to see what they bring to the starter deed. Celebration has been quite the popular destination judging by all the familiar names I’ve seen in local, so I’m keen to see what sort of tourist trap they build! The hunt grows It's been no secret that HotA has been rather limited and well, a little boring. Sindusk, Darklords and other devs have spent this holiday period working on a new system to replace HotA. It's a huge expansive system and will be going on test after tomorrows update! Check out all the details here: That’s it from us this week, we have a huge update to be ready for tomorrow with a ton of tweaks, changes and additions to the game, way more than we've shared here. We're starting 2019 off with a bang and you'll be left saying wow! Hope to see you all there! Until then though, keep on Wurming! Retrograde & the Wurm team.
  4. 25 likes
    We are back in town for another public slay. Slaying will be on Friday. Location : Basically is directly east from PCG village. The deed isn't fully set up yet for the slay so please don't afk by the mine entrance. Thank you. You can sail into the lake and it will be in local for drops etc at that deed. Stick around at the end as we will roll some items from the butchers.
  5. 25 likes
    To those who have interacted with the 'Babelfishie' avatars, I would like to clear up some misconceptions. We have a nearly ten year history with this person via a bunch of other avatar names, and none of it has been pleasant. We know him more prominently as Boston and this person has a solid history of violating our chat rules, game rules, and has committed many abuses towards our community. I have received a number of 'appeals' regarding his permaban on his behalf by 3rd parties, which I assume were pushed by this person. I want to be clear, that at each altercation and penalty, while this person has denied receiving any explanation for his penalties, We have in fact left ban reasons and emails with this person. His 'medical' excuses for why he continues this behavior are not my concern and I cannot govern his life or state of mind. My task is to administrate the rules and make sure that everyone willing to play the game within the given rules can enjoy the service that we provide. While I typically do not divulge details in cases for our penalties, we do not arbitrarily ban anyone. For many years this person has continually appealed his ban even though we have told him not to bother us about it ever again. In 2016 I made the mistake of not telling him he is unwelcome as I mistakenly assumed he had been playing within the rules under a new alias. I was wrong about that. He had not been an active player and until recently I had no reason to pay him any more mind until we began receiving some varied complaints about how he was treating people and he also began wasting our time with more appeals. I do not enjoy banning people... well... maybe a bit.... but the paperwork! Thank you, /Enki (Head Game Master)(the one with the bloodied ban hammer)
  6. 23 likes
    What you see here will be a more transparent issuance of penalties and moderation actions against the most horrendous offenders. We have striven to keep the issues of each member confidential all these years, but there are times when that provided confidentiality is publicly used against us to make us look biased or corrupt. After some discussions behind the scenes we have determined to strip away that confidentiality that we provided when it comes to the most serious offenses such as Toxic Players, or mass penalties where we are often bombarded with appeals as well as 3rd party complaints. When we are required to act against a member of our community, we do not do so out of bias or some form of arbitrary self indulgence. The paperwork is far too great for it to be enjoyable. Yet, when we take action, invariably, the person under penalty rarely tells the 'whole truth' to the people they speak to. This causes us no end of problems and we hope that being more transparent about these individuals will save us a lot of time and effort.
  7. 21 likes
    Once upon a time (4,200 some odd days ago) a group of people from the Off Topic forums of World War 2 Online (now Battleground Europe) walked through a portal onto a place called Wild. Being accustomed to rifles and tanks and planes, we were babes lost in the woods. Our survivalist messiah, Bushman, trekked north while creating one of the first maps to exist and found a place we could all live. But you can read about this elsewhere. This history is interesting, but incomplete. Tales of old glory leave out the mundane but wonderful things. For example, the day we thought we set the forest on fire. Sadly my memory is also incomplete and I do not recall the specific individuals who were present at the time beyond one or two. In our earliest days of wurm, we joined the server in sporadic groups and had to be guided north to the promised land. Bloodyhell had placed some campfires to mark the route for those of us coming in on a certain day, and so we learned that campfires were a wonderful source of light. Soon enough, many of us were placing campfires all around our camp area. We then went off exploring the forest, not knowing what to expect or what we might find. It began to get dark, and it seems to my memory glasses that darkness used to be much darker. We pressed on for a bit, foraging and exploring - but then something strange began to happen. At first we thought it was a trick of the eyes, but it soon became undeniable that the area was getting foggy. This fog became surprisingly thick rather quickly. As it became so that we couldn't see the trees just a few feet away from us someone noticed the ominous orange glow coming from the direction of our camp. Someone else suggested that perhaps we should not have left so many campfires unattended, and this idea and panic quickly spread through the group. Surely we had, in our noobness, set the whole forest ablaze! It was a mad rush to get back to camp with buckets to douse the flames, the smoke getting thicker as we went. It seemed an eternity, with the disaster getting ever worse, until at last we burst into the open ground of the camp -- and of course as you all know we had not, in fact, burned down the forest. It was just fog. In the early days, it was common belief among us (until someone actually found out the hard way and starved) that starvation would cause death. Having enough food was a source of great consternation among our little group. Someone had managed to plant a little four-tile farm but it was constantly bulldozed by people digging. Eventually it was established that each person would spend a certain amount of time each day foraging and delivering their haul to the camp cook (darned if I can't remember who it was). So this we did for a day or two, feeding ourselves on lingonberry and nightshade casseroles with a side of potato. Meat was nigh-impossible to get. We had only our terrible little short swords that came as starter gear at the time, and some had already lost those. We couldn't kill anything without casualties. An aged pheasant nearly decimated our whole population on day 2. One day, a large rat wandered into our camp. At first we all ran away, until one of our hunters-to-be goaded us into battle with a cry of "MEAT!!!" and we sallied forth to battle the rat. Some armed with shovels and planks, others with short swords in one hand and carrying their shield in the other - which was not how a shield is to be used - surrounded the rat and brutally bludgeoned it to death in our frenzy. At last the Rat died in glorious battle and we cheered, exultant in our victory! And then came the realization that we had no way to get the meat off the rat. Shovels didn't butcher back then. Dejected, we went back to our vegan lifestyle. Eventually some Blacklighters found us and killed us, built walls around our camp, burned everything that could be burned, butchered our corpses, and scattered our meat around outside the walls. Good times. TLDR; We joined wild and some stuff happened
  8. 21 likes
    @Sindusk I can't thank you enough for the things you have done and the change you have brought to this game. While I probably was one of the people who was one of the more annoying ones, I was even more amazed by what you put out and at what speed. May your work find roots somewhere else
  9. 17 likes
    the game needs to flush out 90% of its current (staff lol) volunteers and get real staff if it ever wants to be successful unfortunately those in power don't want that to happen for obvious reasons this message will self-destruct once one of said (staff) sees it
  10. 14 likes
    I would like to apologize for the extended downtime Celebration suffered this morning. We've brought the server back online without any data loss or roll backs. We will be awarding 5 hours of sleep bonus on all servers at the next restart on Thursday of this week as compensation for this downtime.
  11. 14 likes
    Truly appreciate the work you put in while on the team, as does everyone else - and it is sad to see you leave because of these reasons. The internal policies we have in place are there due to experience over the many years of Wurm and not wanting to repeat mistakes we've made in the past, so while your opinions on how things should be are well-intentioned some of them do go against what we've directly experienced in the past. In the end it is still disappointing to see you leave, and we wish you luck in future projects.
  12. 13 likes
    Recently a number of the members of the Chaos kingdom named Wurm University have been temporarily banned from Wurm Online. This is in direct relation to the use of a serious exploit that had been believed fixed for some time. No one bothered to report that this was again possible. The names of those banned were collected from the logs surrounding the location where the exploit was last known to be used. We know that only one person did the actual exploitative action, but after an independent review it was determined that the people at the location had committed conspiracy to use and profit from, or hide the use of the exploit. The exploit in question was the ability to manipulate cave tiles in a mine that the player was not in or had access to. Appeals by a number of those affected by the temporary bans are pending.
  13. 13 likes
    I know all too well how firmly minds become set and how the Internet lacks the level of interaction needed to sway those set minds. I felt this needed to be said, however. Sindusk added a lot to the game during his tenure, aided by being a volunteer with free reign to work on his vision of what should be. What made Sindusk a great developer here was most certainly his drive, however it was the rest of the team coming together to make up for his inexperience that brought his visions and projects home. Ausimus, DarkLords, Jberg, and Budda helped with bugs and carrying things across the finish line. Alectrys and Retrograde helped test and organize testing to find those bugs. We are a team, and Sindusk was a part of that team. I looked forward to his experience growing and was even hoping to groom him and vouch for him in a contracted position. My only complaint when it came to Sindusk was that he barely tried to be a part of that team. When he disagreed with a standing policy, he simply broke it instead of discussing it. You may think that was wise of him, but those polices stand for a reason. Does anyone remember Sparta? I wasn't there, but boy do I remember the fallout from it. We try very hard to not do anything unilaterally and to ensure our communication channels with players are public and open to ensure another Sparta doesn't happen. Sindusk had thrown his fellow team members under the bus numerous times without any supporting evidence. When he was spoken to about it, he was apologetic, but that only lasted so long. Even his exit was another thumbed nose at the team that helped him along the way, by not giving us any chance to make a news post. Within minutes of notifying Budda, we were getting PMs about it from players. So while I agree that he did some amazing things for the game and I did enjoy his views on things, I have to adamantly disagree with his method in leaving and his methods of communication during his time. Keep in mind he only communicated with a small segment of the player base regularly. For someone who criticized us about communication, I find this hypocritical. I would also like to thank him and the players who have been actively discussing communication. It's really brought into the light much of the suggestions Retrograde has been making for months now, and I think this event gives him more credit for that. Between Tich and Sindusk, I feel the rest of us have quite a lot of empty space to try and fill. This is not the end of Wurm though, unless you want it to be by continuing to doom-say the game. This is but a ripple. We will continue with updates, with content, and with moving forward. Wurm isn't going anywhere, no matter how many numbers you throw at these forums.
  14. 13 likes
    Sindusk had a vision of improving the game, and he was willing to take risks to frankly communicate with the playerbase, in a way no one else was (at least, not since I've been here). As such, he represented a kind of synergy between players and developers to work together to improve Wurm. -That's- what's missing.
  15. 13 likes
    might wanna revisit those policies eh
  16. 12 likes
    Not to cause any trouble or anything, but if your policy is to not talk to players, I believe your team has gone down the wrong path to address the issues you've encountered. Players are your most important resource. Without players there is no game. Remember that. Talking to your player base should be your #1 priority. The fact you dont see that saddens me greatly.
  17. 11 likes
    Most journal goals are single success items like (flatten a tile, ride a cow, enchant an item, etc). But we also have the multiple action goals like : - Hold 10 sermons - Spend 1k favor - sacrifice 10k items, - etc Since this is intended as a new and improved system over the old personal goal system, it would be great if we could actually see the progress.. so it would show in the Journal window like : - Hold 10 sermons (2/10) - Spend 1k favor (0/1000) - Sacrifice 10k items (2.323/10.000) - etc This would help in getting the players more involved and see the actual progress and also with finding bugs, like the favor spending one that's in the forums now, that if people don't know about might just make them waste favor for it without ever completing. This might be the case for other goals as well.
  18. 11 likes
    I had a feeling Keenan was somehow involved in all of this.
  19. 11 likes
    ...also...now that it is easier for new players to learn the game...I think a refund of all the time it actually took me, versus the time it would take me now...to learn about Wurm should be reimbursed. A conversion of time to coffee, or time to chocolate would be acceptable of course. Thanks for your...time.
  20. 11 likes
    If you want to maintain the image of transparency then some sacrifices have to be made. Especially when you consider the real world money involved in this game and pvp. I don't like it. Wish it was not the case, but it is and you cannot deny that. also why is it sindusk wasnt allowed to have a private conversation with a player regarding a bug but some GMs are allowed to join private kingdoms, discords, etc
  21. 11 likes
    Until you completely remove staff from playing on PvP servers the bias or perceived bias will remain.
  22. 11 likes
    The policy is specifically to do with pvp players talking to developers in back channel PMs or messages. There has been a long history of accusations of one kingdom or another having the ear of a dev and getting their requests implemented into the game because it benefits them over another kingdom. These accusations still happen to this day. Limiting those communications stop that sort of thing from happening. The forums exist for a reason, the suggestions forum and bug forum exist for a reason. If everything is discussed openly in these sections then the accusations of bias towards one kingdom or another are baseless.
  23. 10 likes
    With the new rendering engine, we got a true difference of shadow and sunshine. Nice dark deep shadows contrasted with bright sunny areas. I LOVE IT. However there is one problem, which is that any area that happens to be on the eastern side of a large mountain is in the shadow of that mountain for most of the day and it's so dark and dismal. So how to fix this without ruining the new rendering engine look? A 24-hour lighting OPTION for lamps on deed. Obviously the default setting would still be 12h, so it wouldn't change life for anyone who doesn't want to use it. Any lamp on deed would have a new option in it's context menu to select either 12 hr lighting or 24 hr lighting. Why like this, instead of a global setting in deed preferences? Because you might not want all your lamps to do this. During my stream I was showing people what I meant:
  24. 10 likes
    Steve Jobs was not the only guy working at Apple.. what's your point ? Edit: What everyone is trying to get to is that this guy showed us the light at the end of the tunnel, he showed us that old bugs can be fixed, new complicated systems can be reworked.. it's not only about what he worked on but his attitude as a whole that gave everyone hope that this game will get better. Then we see him leave for a lot of weird reasons that probably only you guys know.. Of course we want him back.. we had a glance into a different way of implementing stuff and communicating with the player base that I personally haven't seen in the 4 years I've been playing this game. Nobody is trying to denigrate the work of the other devs in any way though..
  25. 10 likes
    @Sindusk did so much for this game in so little time.. I can't believe the Wurm team is just going to let him go.. Fix whatever internal issues you guys have going on over there and get this guy on the payroll because he has the vision and the dedication to make Wurm a great game..