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when it come to time/productivity management and coders...

1+1=2 | 2+1=3,5 | 3,5+1=6

the more individual coders you put on the same project the longer it takes

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8 minutes ago, KaiH said:

when it come to time/productivity management and coders...

1+1=2 | 2+1=3,5 | 3,5+1=6

the more individual coders you put on the same project the longer it takes

 

I would personally said that this is more like 1 = 1, 1 + 1 = 2,5 to 4 depending on many variables (are they working in office or via web? How well they know each other? Are they good at cooperating? And many others), and in case of more and more developers and project size that grows exponentially. Single developer working on single program is most productive way of development as he knows his program very well, don't need to care about stuff like documentation or finding specific parts of code at all etc. that take major part (between 70 and 95%) in usual team development.

 

Programmers usually have excellent memory, so even after 3-5 years you can quickly "jump into" your own project and feel like in home, still remembering most classes, methods and implementations. In case of group projects that change over time, at least half of development time is spent on browsing the code alone. In some cases, searching can take many hours while actual implementation few seconds or minutes.

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2 minutes ago, KaiH said:

when it come to time/productivity management and coders...

1+1=2 | 2+1=3,5 | 3,5+1=6

the more individual coders you put on the same project the longer it takes

Indeed  -its known as Brook's Law - Adding manpower to a late software project makes it later.

Not to be a smartass - but dont add manpower if its behind schedule :)

 

You have how many client devs ? and how many Server devs? how many in the art department now?

 Make a list of projects and hand them out.

 

I see what your saying but your not really going to encounter this issue as much as you might think - Why?

because your not making a new game - no one will be struggling with "OK how did we want terraforming to work?" ect ect ect

Everyone allready knows how its supposed to work. You have a working game to simply copy over.

If someone is behind yeah its always best not to add more people itll normally just get everyone bent out of shape.

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1 minute ago, sunsvortex said:

I see what your saying but your not really going to encounter this issue as much as you might think - Why?

because your not making a new game - no one will be struggling with "OK how did we want terraforming to work?" ect ect ect

Everyone allready knows how its supposed to work. You have a working game to simply copy over.

If someone is behind yeah its always best not to add more people itll normally just get everyone bent out of shape.

 

The problem is not reinventing the wheel (something was did once already, don't need to think about that again), but fitting the solution into the new environment. In many cases old solution will be just useless due to how engine handles rendering, in other cases would require major changes or (best case scenario) just modifications to old solution to make it work under new API. Naturally most common are "full rewrite" or "major rewrite" cases, it is very uncommon that solution which works under one engine/library will work after simple changes under another engine/library, especially when we are thinking about different levels of API's (LWJGL is very low-level graphics library while Unity is high-level graphics engine, naturally this is different matter when thinking about LWJGL to JOGL switch which operate on the same level and are based on the same principles, in this very specific case most code can be rewritten 1:1).

 

For example, let's take screwing of fences (which is required to make fences on slopes, bridges etc. work) - in LWJGL you can do that just with a simple matrix transformation, but Unity don't allows you to access transform matrix directly, as well as any other transformations than translate/rotate/scale. This means that completely new solution is needed (in case of DeedPlanner Unity I had to write custom system to create new models out of original ones to make them appear skewed - implementation and optimization of this part alone took me 3 weeks).

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And let me just restate - were talking about an existing game to be literally copied. You can apply all kinds of time efficiency models to it but they will all over estimate the actual time needed as they are based on starting from scratch. Were not starting from scratch. Wurm is fully functional on its own. Everyone knows how everything is supposed to work so all the litteral game engineering is taken out, If everyone is used to attack the project with thier own set of tasks its not going to take nearly as long as you might think. Not even close actually. What in my mind is most likely to happen that would start slowing things down would be the desire to add in new stuff as you go along. Just be hard nosed about it and wait till you can get a litteral copy of Wurm functioning and THEN start adding stuff.

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7 minutes ago, sunsvortex said:

Indeed  -its known as Brook's Law - Adding manpower to a late software project makes it later.

Not to be a smartass - but dont add manpower if its behind schedule :)

 

You have how many client devs ? and how many Server devs? how many in the art department now?

 Make a list of projects and hand them out.

 

I see what your saying but your not really going to encounter this issue as much as you might think - Why?

because your not making a new game - no one will be struggling with "OK how did we want terraforming to work?" ect ect ect

Everyone allready knows how its supposed to work. You have a working game to simply copy over.

If someone is behind yeah its always best not to add more people itll normally just get everyone bent out of shape.

 

We've talked about this many times between all the devs over the years, and every time it is brought up, the general consensus for a decent estimate would be 2 years.

 

There are only 3 full-time devs on this project, and the flakiness of us volunteers can't be relied upon to shorten that timeframe - of course we would be eager to help and do what we can, but with us being volunteers, real life can easily get in the way. 

When you add in that the base game will still need updates and fixes in that time, you could maybe get away with 2 of the devs working full time on a new-engine client - rewriting everything and making it all work with the server software with that few people is where the estimate comes from.

 

The 6 month estimate a couple of pages back would be accurate with a few more full-time devs, and an inexperienced project manager giving that estimate. If you've ever worked with software development, you tend to know that any first estimate should be doubled or tripled to get the real estimate - just due to lack of knowledge, and the million different problems that arise during large projects.

 

TL;DR: Conservative bets are on at least 1.5-2 years for a move to a bigger/better engine.

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9 minutes ago, sunsvortex said:

And let me just restate - were talking about an existing game to be literally copied. You can apply all kinds of time efficiency models to it but they will all over estimate the actual time needed as they are based on starting from scratch. Were not starting from scratch. Wurm is fully functional on its own. Everyone knows how everything is supposed to work so all the litteral game engineering is taken out, If everyone is used to attack the project with thier own set of tasks its not going to take nearly as long as you might think. Not even close actually. What in my mind is most likely to happen that would start slowing things down would be the desire to add in new stuff as you go along. Just be hard nosed about it and wait till you can get a litteral copy of Wurm functioning and THEN start adding stuff.

 

That takes away most of the reason for a new engine though, doesn't it?

 

Doing that would give us what, maybe a slightly better running client and prettier lighting? A big part of changing engines would be the chance to go back over everything, and change large systems that are impractical to change right now to make them work better. Just copying and pasting the existing game would do almost nothing for the state of Wurm, and when we're finished and want to go back and say, replace the UI, we'd still be stuck with the same amount of work that'd be required to do it right now.

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4 minutes ago, Budda said:

 

We've talked about this many times between all the devs over the years, and every time it is brought up, the general consensus for a decent estimate would be 2 years.

 

There are only 3 full-time devs on this project, and the flakiness of us volunteers can't be relied upon to shorten that timeframe - of course we would be eager to help and do what we can, but with us being volunteers, real life can easily get in the way. 

When you add in that the base game will still need updates and fixes in that time, you could maybe get away with 2 of the devs working full time on a new-engine client - rewriting everything and making it all work with the server software with that few people is where the estimate comes from.

 

The 6 month estimate a couple of pages back would be accurate with a few more full-time devs, and an inexperienced project manager giving that estimate. If you've ever worked with software development, you tend to know that any first estimate should be doubled or tripled to get the real estimate - just due to lack of knowledge, and the million different problems that arise during large projects.

 

TL;DR: Conservative bets are on at least 1.5-2 years for a move to a bigger/better engine.

OK cool, I can work with this -  lets say 1.5 years

You can spend 1.5 years developing in Java and putting out some good stuff and maybe perhaps get current WO numbers stabilized and arguably get them going in a positive direction only to have them flatten out  - Im using past as prologue - fair enough????

OR

You can spend 1.5 years moving to a different platform where you have the option to take the game in any direction and do so with a very small dev team. The opportunity is there to adapt and be competitive. You can open it up to a MUCH larger audience and really start seeing some good results for the publicity on steam. these things simply cannot be realized to the extent you could on a different platform where you can actually respond to content requests - where you can respo0nd to game mechanic requests - respond to graphic upgrade requests.

 

Its just not possible using a straight language.

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1 minute ago, Budda said:

 

That takes away most of the reason for a new engine though, doesn't it?

 

Doing that would give us what, maybe a slightly better running client and prettier lighting? A big part of changing engines would be the chance to go back over everything, and change large systems that are impractical to change right now to make them work better. Just copying and pasting the existing game would do almost nothing for the state of Wurm, and when we're finished and want to go back and say, replace the UI, we'd still be stuck with the same amount of work that'd be required to do it right now.

Nope -just the opposite - now you have a game that can go anywhere in any direction at 1/10 the time it would take to do the same in Java. If I wanted new trees I have several options - I can go to the Unity Asset store -  I could make my own -  I could go to the aforementioned Wurm Asset store and purchase someones tree pack they had done.

 

If we stay on Java - thats not going to happen -and even if Im wrong and lets say there ends up being a Wurm asset store - you have to use injection to get them in there so you dont step on any updates. An integrated modding infrastructure via Unity or Unreal takes care of this.

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Pretty sure a lot of people desire a WO2, believe a lot of people desire better game-play outside of crafting and terraforming which this game excel's it

 

Main benefits of Unreal would be a better combat system and graphical capabilities, off the bat and better vendor support for the Devs and if they can add the above and clean up some of the WO mechanics and skills it would rock

 

Don't believe anyone wants a 1:1 transfer of WO to Unreal

Don't think anyone would expect's Kingdom Come  either, if that ever game ever comes out, lol

 

Edited by enoofu

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Another Question for you Budda - when you guys looked at this were you talking about every single person stopping develoment on WO and focusing on moving to the newe platform or only a few working on it?. Just do this - my only request -revisit it. put it in terms of everyone -all hands - and no further development on WO. Then tell me what you think the time frame would be.

 

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Just now, sunsvortex said:

Another Question for you Budda - when you guys looked at this were you talking about every single person stopping develoment on WO and focusing on moving to the newe platform or only a few working on it?. Just do this - my only request -revisit it. put it in terms of everyone -all hands - and no further development on WO. Then tell me what you think the time frame would be.

 

 

That really can't happen though.

 

You are seeing this problem from the perspective of someone who has spent a weekend playing with a free edition of an engine? If you have credentials, I'll definitely retract that statement.

The points:

  • First of all, the engines cost money. Unity would require all of us (including volunteer developers) to pony up money for a per-desk license. If I'm wrong about this, please do correct me. That's $75/mo or $1500 for a limit-support perpetual license. (That much I did find, and support for a currently purchased license ends in March of 2017. No new features, fixes, etc after that point.) Unreal wants 5% per game per month once you make over $3,000. I'm not sure how that applies to an existing product, and we have two: Wurm Unlimited and Wurm Online. That alone would be 5% off the gross of both games, not to mention what is already paid out for existing deals. I can't speak for the CodeClub books, but given that there are only 3 full time developers, I'm not sure if that amount of money would be an easy loss to soak up without raising prices on players.
  • Devoting the full strength of Code Club at a rewrite would leave both Wurm Online and Wurm Unlimited to stagnate. Given the costs I mentioned above, it doesn't make practical business sense to allow your core money-making products to stagnate in the hope that a rewrite will bring people back or pull new players in. This is called a gamble, and sensible business folks don't take risks like that.
  • Budda's estimate is spot on, even with every developer at the keys. There's a number of issues you are failing to factor in, including incompatibility with current systems. Even if we used a tool to literally port the code right on over, there's likely to be a number of areas which will need rewrites just to get things working. Even if we get a working client done in six months, we will have done nothing for the people who have been paying that entire time and have an unstable and likely bug-prone client to show for it. Consider the history of Wurm and tell me if that will go over well?
  • That estimate doesn't take into account what I mentioned before, which would be the impact on Saroman. If we stopped everything to work on a new client, customers would expect dramatic improvements for putting up with paying in and getting nothing for that amount of time. So we would need quite a number of new art assets that take advantage of the functionalities the new engine gives. We'd also likely cut off some of our customers with older machines as a result.
  • Lastly, and most importantly, having an IDE such as what Unity and Unreal provide does not ensure anything when it comes to a project like this. It makes it easy for novices to point and click their way around to generating game code. A client does a lot more than just render 3D graphics, and we would likely need to do heavy rewrites on the server as well if we must use a Unity or Unreal communication library that might not support our current methods of doing things. That's one of those catches that makes an experienced project manager double or triple their estimates: You cannot know everything, so you assume you don't.

On that last point, the client is just part of what needs to be caught up to the future in Wurm. The server also needs some love, as it's responsible for some of the more game-breaking bugs you all experience. The current boat travel one, as well as various server-crossing issues, the spiking lag at times, and many other smaller and less reported issues all live in the server. The server is a far more complicated piece of code than the client is, yet it must work in tandem with the client. If you are also considering a server rewrite, then that estimate of Budda's now approaching a half decade at best.

 

Then there's Wurm Unlimited! We could focus a rewrite simply on Wurm Online, but we will then have a fractured code base and likely more threats of all sorts from various WU enthusiasts who quite dearly recall that we would keep WU updated with WO. Well a rewrite for WO, client and even just the required parts of the server, would also mean potentially breaking backwards compatibility for Wurm Unlimited.

 

I didn't even cover the amount of damage the stagnation itself would do to the brand, which people already scream isn't being advertised enough. We would effectively have to not do any advertising at all. What point would there be to bring people to a stagnant game with naught but a promise of a better tomorrow?

 

So in closing:

If resources allowed it, would a slow move to a more modern 3D engine be a good idea? Yes, quite possibly. A slow, purposeful movement with a complete rewrite as Budda mentioned would make sense. Is that a likely scenario, regardless of all the arguing, bickering, and ruffled feathers? No, not at all likely.

 

I'm done weighing in on this issue. I think this post pretty much covers everything.

Have fun, and good night :)

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1 hour ago, Warlander said:

 

The problem is not reinventing the wheel (something was did once already, don't need to think about that again), but fitting the solution into the new environment. In many cases old solution will be just useless due to how engine handles rendering, in other cases would require major changes or (best case scenario) just modifications to old solution to make it work under new API. Naturally most common are "full rewrite" or "major rewrite" cases, it is very uncommon that solution which works under one engine/library will work after simple changes under another engine/library, especially when we are thinking about different levels of API's (LWJGL is very low-level graphics library while Unity is high-level graphics engine, naturally this is different matter when thinking about LWJGL to JOGL switch which operate on the same level and are based on the same principles, in this very specific case most code can be rewritten 1:1).

 

For example, let's take screwing of fences (which is required to make fences on slopes, bridges etc. work) - in LWJGL you can do that just with a simple matrix transformation, but Unity don't allows you to access transform matrix directly, as well as any other transformations than translate/rotate/scale. This means that completely new solution is needed (in case of DeedPlanner Unity I had to write custom system to create new models out of original ones to make them appear skewed - implementation and optimization of this part alone took me 3 weeks).

Indeed - but there will be plenty of places where you dont need to put in a solution. You may need to rethink the mechanic a bit and decide if certain things are actually needed or not. I get it - there will be those challenges, but for as many challenges as you run into your also going to run into just as many -"hey we dont need all that now we can just do it this way" instances. My bet is that it balances out and works in your favor more times than not.

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That really can't happen though. -Wrong - It can and it should.

 

You are seeing this problem from the perspective of someone who has spent a weekend playing with a free edition of an engine? If you have credentials, I'll definitely retract that statement. I dont feel the need to justify myself to a troll.

The points:

  • First of all, the engines cost money. Unity would require all of us (including volunteer developers) to pony up money for a per-desk license. If I'm wrong about this, please do correct me. That's $75/mo or $1500 for a limit-support perpetual license. (That much I did find, and support for a currently purchased license ends in March of 2017. No new features, fixes, etc after that point.) Unreal wants 5% per game per month once you make over $3,000. I'm not sure how that applies to an existing product, and we have two: Wurm Unlimited and Wurm Online. That alone would be 5% off the gross of both games, not to mention what is already paid out for existing deals. I can't speak for the CodeClub books, but given that there are only 3 full time developers, I'm not sure if that amount of money would be an easy loss to soak up without raising prices on players. - If you cant afford to buy licenses close the doors you cant afford to run the game as is - no sale -  worst case scenario - put a post on these forums asking for the community to support it. Monetize the game correctly and you dont worry about the costs of licensing. - This is a false concern. Rolf should easily be able to afford licensing - Complete Nonsense. I have addressed this concern about 30 times in the last 2 years - no need to rehash it.
  • Devoting the full strength of Code Club at a rewrite would leave both Wurm Online and Wurm Unlimited to stagnate. Given the costs I mentioned above, it doesn't make practical business sense to allow your core money-making products to stagnate in the hope that a rewrite will bring people back or pull new players in. This is called a gamble, and sensible business folks don't take risks like that. -Wrong - a simple post to the effect of " We are currently moving away from Java to Unreal to move the game forward. In order to move the game this way in a feasable timeframe we will need all hands on deck. WO and WU will still be available but no further development will be put into these items as we are moving to a new platform -Insert all the good things to come from it" Done. Period.
  • Budda's estimate is spot on, even with every developer at the keys. How would you know that? I know they didnt take into account everyone working on it. There's a number of issues you are failing to factor in, including incompatibility with current systems. Even if we used a tool to literally port the code right on over, there's likely to be a number of areas which will need rewrites just to get things working. Even if we get a working client done in six months, we will have done nothing for the people who have been paying that entire time and have an unstable and likely bug-prone client to show for it. Consider the history of Wurm and tell me if that will go over well?
  • That estimate doesn't take into account what I mentioned before, which would be the impact on Saroman. New art is the easiest to fix - Go to Asset store download and insert ,done.Right now if I want a new wall type I have to open 3dsmax design it find textures for it and then code it in -Nonsense - Put in an integrated modding infrastructure and life gets really simple really quick - they could make a wall designer and charge for it -pick a wall type , add a texture push a button to add it in -people could go to town making all kinds and post them up for free or sell them. The art and modding are where moving it to a new platform can really shine. If we stopped everything to work on a new client, customers would expect dramatic improvements for putting up with paying in and getting nothing for that amount of time. So we would need quite a number of new art assets that take advantage of the functionalities the new engine gives. We'd also likely cut off some of our customers with older machines as a result.
  • Lastly, and most importantly, having an IDE such as what Unity and Unreal provide does not ensure anything when it comes to a project like this. It makes it easy for novices but you are a novice - and as long as you have and keep volunteer devs coming in there will be plenty of novices...so I would call that a strength. Can put all the novices on scripting jobs and leave the low level jobs to full time coders. to point and click their way around to generating game code. A client does a lot more than just render 3D graphics, and we would likely need to do heavy rewrites on the server as well if we must use a Unity or Unreal communication library that might not support our current methods of doing things. That's one of those catches that makes an experienced project manager double or triple their estimates: You cannot know everything, so you assume you don't.

On that last point, the client is just part of what needs to be caught up to the future in Wurm. The server also needs some love, as it's responsible for some of the more game-breaking bugs you all experience. The current boat travel one, as well as various server-crossing issues, the spiking lag at times, and many other smaller and less reported issues all live in the server. The server is a far more complicated piece of code than the client is, yet it must work in tandem with the client. If you are also considering a server rewrite, then that estimate of Budda's now approaching a half decade at best. umm thats one of the reasons why you move to a real engine.

 

Then there's Wurm Unlimited! We could focus a rewrite simply on Wurm Online, but we will then have a fractured code base umm we allready have a fractured code base WO /WU seriously, do you even know what you are talking about? It sounds to me like your just arguing to win the argument - doesnt sound like your trying to make any valid point.and likely more threats of all sorts from various WU enthusiasts who quite dearly recall that we would keep WU updated with WO. Well a rewrite for WO, client and even just the required parts of the server, would also mean potentially breaking backwards compatibility for Wurm Unlimited.

 

I didn't even cover the amount of damage the stagnation itself would do to the brand, which people already scream isn't being advertised enough. We would effectively have to not do any advertising at all. What point would there be to bring people to a stagnant game with naught but a promise of a better tomorrow?

 

So in closing:

If resources allowed it, would a slow move to a more modern 3D engine be a good idea? Yes, quite possibly. A slow, purposeful movement with a complete rewrite as Budda mentioned would make sense. Is that a likely scenario, regardless of all the arguing, bickering, and ruffled feathers? No, not at all likely.

 

I'm done weighing in on this issue. I think this post pretty much covers everything.

Have fun, and good night :)

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Reading certain member's posts in this thread gives me a headache. I can't imagine how much this hurts the brains of people who have real degrees (ie. Not BA's) and can actually program.

 

I feel bad for you Keenan... Warlander... Buddha...  I don't always agree with you, but I honestly for god's sake feel for you having to wade through the text equivalent of verbal diarrhea.

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It's not the cost to play. People don't mind paying for a great game. Folks paid when the numbers were high.

 

I just think most games have a finite life to them. I think wurm has had a GREAT run that in all likelihood has for the most part run it's course. The whole WU and division of the community likely hastening that.

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6 hours ago, Budda said:

The 6 month estimate a couple of pages back would be accurate with a few more full-time devs, and an inexperienced project manager giving that estimate. If you've ever worked with software development, you tend to know that any first estimate should be doubled or tripled to get the real estimate - just due to lack of knowledge, and the million different problems that arise during large projects.

According to Rolf there are 5 full time devs - Thats what I based the estimate on - I didnt include the vol devs. If you take those 5 devs - figuring 7 hours a day 5 days a week for 26 weeks -thats 175 hours per week for a total of 4550 working hours for a 6 month period - double it for a years time - 9100 hours without any assistance from vol devs - If just for the sake of this im only going to count you and warlander -lets say your able to do 50% of the time - that equates to 1 extra dev. If you think your time spent is less than that lets just assume all the other vol devs make up for that. Fair enough for a rough average?

So lets add in the extra dev - thats 910 hours for 6 months - double it for a year 1820. so now we have between 5460 and 10920 hours. That looks like plenty of time to me to get it moved over including learning curve.

 

Your estimates thus far have always been based on minimal staff working on it. I have never proposed that. In order to make it happen you need everyone to help. All hands - everyone - you do that your in there. So what if it runs over a bit. Risk vs Reward, ROI, Code Management, Scaling - its all there. Its worth the time and effort. Its worth putting things aside to make it happen.

 

As i said before you can spend this time and money doing the same things we have been doing for the past 10 years and getting the same results we have been getting over those years or you can move to something to get you off the treadmill. Im not saying that without a doubt its the cure for all that ills Wurm, but it will give you the tools and structure needed to efficiently manage those issues. Itll put you in a position to better manage everything as well as start moving away from the constant "We dont have the time or resources" excuse thats always used.

 

Dont you ever get tired of having to say that? Doesnt that piss you off a bit? Dont you get tired of being on this treadmill of just keeping your head above water with an intermittent swim for your life?

Do away with the defeatest attitudes

Stop beating the dead horse

Stop with all the excuses and rationales NOT to do it

Focus on rationalizing ways and means TO do it

Put energy into making things happen and put the circular logic to bed

 

Were going nowhere unless some serious changes are made - while this wont in and of itself cure those issues it will allow you the best chance to address them now and in the future.

If the people that build the game wont reinvest in it - where is the incentive for anyone else to?

 

 

Edited by sunsvortex

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Simple rule: If you never get started it never gets done.

 

Or as my boss likes to put it: I don't want to hear about problems, I want to hear about solutions :P

 

If donations help - count my meager share in. Crowdfunding is in and I have seen a lot worse projects get support.

 

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Well, all this techno-babble and people wanting the game to be completely rewritten, and how this could or should be done, means exactly squat to me.  Speaking strictly for myself as a simple player who happens to love the *feel* of Wurm, (though I doubt I'm completely alone on this), I believe changing the core of Wurm would change the *feel* of Wurm.  And I lack enough words to express how much I DO NOT want that to ever happen.

 

Deja Vu, 15 or so years back, to the UO forums when certain loudly vocal forum goers, arm-chair accountants, and wannabe game designers, insisted the best thing for UO was to go 3D. Complete with their expert (in their own minds) opinions on just how to do it and "save the game."  lol.  Demands to "get modern," "improve the game," etc.  So, they made a 3D client (but thankfully allowed players to choose which to use), and guess what?  It sucked, big time.  Hardly anyone liked it or used it. lol.  It completely changed the *feel* of the game we already loved.

 

Personally, if Wurm started looking and feeling like all the other games out there, it would lose a large part of it's charm for me.  I'd much rather they continue on the path of fixing bugs and adding new stuff like they've been doing, and leave the *feel* of the game alone.  Thankfully I doubt there's any chance they'll be  swayed by demands to change it.

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Wurm Online is very old. Either improve the graphics with a new engine or make it free to play with a limited sum of skills instead of flat 20 skill cap. Ultima Online had it and it worked great, you had to specialize in a few skills. The cap could be raised with books bought from traders or perhaps created by other players with a component bought from traders. That way new players will not feel limited until they are already invested in the game and then they wont mind staying and paying for Wurm since its a great game once you get into it.

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23 hours ago, sunsvortex said:
17 minutes ago, Tsetse said:

Wurm Online is very old. Either improve the graphics with a new engine or make it free to play with a limited sum of skills instead of flat 20 skill cap. Ultima Online had it and it worked great, you had to specialize in a few skills. The cap could be raised with books bought from traders or perhaps created by other players with a component bought from traders. That way new players will not feel limited until they are already invested in the game and then they wont mind staying and paying for Wurm since its a great game once you get into it.

 

NO.  Like Amadee just said, such changes would completely change the look and feel of Wurm Online.  Not going to happen, nor should it.  Ever.

Edited by Slickshot

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Reading this thread made me think of this post from a while back that I saw a year or two ago (this blog itself is gone it seems, found it using the WBM):

 

https://web.archive.org/web/20101204081431/http://www.wurmonline.com/blog/oddments/wurm-is-a-game-with-a-soul/

 

Edit: There's plenty more blog posts from the devs earlier in the game's lifetime you can read from this snapshot - for anyone who might find it interesting.

Edited by Fireflyb

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Every other MMO is Free to play? Don't think so... only the ones that didn't do very well or that are dying due to being poor copies of other games or not living up to their hype. Many switched to a FTP system to try and hold onto a vanishing audience. A huge game world with no players is no good to anyone. But regardless of this, Wurm is Free to play. It even allows you to buy premium with in game coins. Difficult - yes. Time consuming - yes. Grindy - Yes. So it is with other games too. I have a feeling it's only non-premiums spouting this argument.

 

Timers are too slow? Really? If they really were quicker, you finish modelling your deed quicker and stick around playing longer? With everything sped up you just hit endgame much earlier finish building everything you wanted to build earlier.. get bored earlier.. leave earlier. Dunno.. I kind of like the pace personally. Never even wanted to go to Epic for the faster skill gain curve. To me, wurm is the jounery, the challenge of living within your current skill limitations, being creative to get around things that you are not yet skilled enough to do on your own. Having 100 in every skill would be tediously boring in my book. There's nothing left to aim for, nothing you can't easily do.

 

Change the bleedin' game engine? Other than the stupendous amount of work that requires (despite one person's somewhat naive ideology) and huge amount of 'downtime' with only the promise that afterwards, new features would take less time to develop and be easier to implement (but hey.. it would also be simpler or modders in WU - yay... I don't care about that. I play WO). I also find that, like Amedee, most games using an out-of-the-box engine all feel 'samey'. It's very easy to spot a game using the unreal engine, or unity engine - in much the same way as its painfully obvious if a game is made in Flash or RPGmaker. What I never saw mentioned though was that no Engine is ideal. No engine can do everything. Every engine has things it really doesn't do well, wasn't designed to do, or was never intended to do. Every engine that is except the one you custom built - but even that runs into problems when the scope of the game changes and new features beyond the initial scope are implemented. I like the look and feel of Wurm. It is somewhat unique and certainly a lot prettier now than 8 or 9 years ago. It also runs pretty well on old platforms  (even though most of the settings need to be turned right down). Several other developers out there tried to make a Wurm style game using different engines - none seemed to do overly well though, but they did succeed enough to take away a lot of the griefers in Wurm :) A different engine.. nah. really not a big enough boost, certainly not worth the time, and with the big possibility that the end result might simply lose the Wurm charm and much of it's existing playerbase along with it.

 

3D mines? I'm really not sure how that would greatly improve things. It would be different - granted. It would change a lot of things for miners and those who revel in having a nice mine. Will it really boost Wurm's popularity? Not as much as being able to build structures or houses, walls and doors inside mines I think.

 

Lower premium cost - supplemented by more shop items (and reasonable prices of existing ones)? Possibly might increase premium count and possibly more total income. But lots of novelty items, novelty costumes and so on would heavily increase in-game textures, download sizes and memory usage.

 

More QoL improvements to the game? I think so.

 

More visual variety in the game world (e.g. having the old wood textures back on wooden items, having realistic and relative quantities of dye for various items - BSB needs more than a collosus? - really?). I think so.

 

A better trade system. One that doesn't rely on chat and being online at the same time as the other person, one that doesn't rely on forums, or outside tools, one that doesn't require huge amounts of time and effort in-game and gives everyone a place in the market - not just for the top crafters and top gear.

 

More uses for some materials and skills.

 

Make every weapon or shield a viable choice.

 

Lots of little things from the fabulous suggestions forums could hugely affect the enjoyment and gameplay.

 

More events, and not just ones geared towards those with 70+ fighting skills... ones for younger characters and which include freemium players too.

 

Freemiums have it pretty rough in wurm capped at 20 and unable to do many things most of us take for granted in wurm, but without the freemium players the world would be far emptier and far less enjoyable. They need some love too. Even if its just something like after 100hrs of play, they can buy a month of premium for only 2s in-game. Something they can easily afford in order to find out the joy of being premium. And heck.. have a craftable tent that doesn't require cordage rope - so that they can at least make a replacement after their starter tent decays away!

 

 

 

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Posts have gotten too long to read. Why don't the people pushing for a new engine pick a version of WU to work from and start their own project porting the client? Could even open source it.

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