Author Topic: PegasusMD's War College Report  (Read 7990 times)

Offline PegasusMD

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PegasusMD's War College Report
« on: June 19, 2008, 02:17:35 AM »
Well I have sorted and uploaded my images. I went over the events of the War College so I’m ready to give my report.

1.   I want to point out we were there to provide feedback to the Devs from the community. We were not there to get secrets of D10 or other deployments to leak the information to the community. NCSoft has their capable staff to send out information when it is ready to be released. Why go then? Because face to face feedback has more of an impact than just words in print. One can see the importance and commitment of the feedback when it is done “live”. Also we can see how things are done and have a better understanding how and when things get worked on so we can help the community to give better feedback to the Devs.

2.   I will give my impressions of what I saw and the future state of the game. I will also, NDA allowed, give general information of what to expect in future deployment.

NCSoft was committed to having this War College happen. When it was first brought up, it was pointed out that the current budget and resources were allocated. There was nothing in the budget for it. The Execs at NCSoft replied make it happen and they would provide what was needed. To me that indicate they are behind TR and to its success.

War College Schedule:
THURSDAY

2:00PM – 4:00PM   Pick up at Airport
4:00PM – 6:00 PM   Check in at Hotel
6:00PM – 8:00 PM   Dinner at NXNW (with Critters, CuppaJo, and FireLotus)
8:00PM +      Back to hotel

FRIDAY

9:00 AM – 10:00 AM   CuppaJo to take you to breakfast
10:00 AM – 11:00 AM   Richard’s tour of NCsoft
11:00 AM – 11:30 AM   Lunch at County Line BBQ (with Leads, GMs, and QA Ambassadors)
2:00 PM – 4:00 PM   Demo of Deployment 10
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM   Game discussion with Tom Potter and Chris Spears
5:00PM – 6:00PM   Back to hotel, dinner prep
6:30PM – 9:00PM   Dinner at Jeffrey’s (with developers)
9PM + Optional Activity   Master Pancake Theatre or Dave & Busters

SATURDAY

Morning      Check out hotel by 12PM and leave for home

As you can see we had a very full schedule.  Now pictures, because as everyone knows , “no pictures, it did not happen”.


Thursday- arrive day.






Checking in-





Before dinner





Dinner-



After dinner we all retired to MisterGlass room. There we drank beer and talked Critters, CuppaJo, and FireLotus ears off about the game. In fact whenever two or more people were together, we talked about what we liked , what we had problems with and what we liked to see added to the game.
(Sorry no pictures as I was spending too much time talking to take any)
« Last Edit: June 20, 2008, 04:37:11 PM by PegasusMD »
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Offline PegasusMD

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2008, 02:34:50 AM »
Friday-

This was the meat of the trip. It was fairly packed. The heaviest talking was again during the meal times.




The Tour --

The morning was mostly the tour of the place. This was mainly to see where everyone worked and to places faces to the names.  I took a lot of pictures  but will not post all of them here but will include a link to them near the end of my report. There were some things I could not take pictures of. Like the whiteboard that had the deployment schedule with hard and soft objectives for deployments D10 - D14.  I will say there are some interesting items coming for both PVE and PVP.




Sound Department



Lots of nick nacks and Critters too.

 



A lot of things on the walls.



Computer network room and QA Office.


 



Deployment planning -

After the tour , which took longer than planned, CuppaJo took us to a conference room to cover how the game is developed in house. Pasted development was done in a waterfall format (or trickle down theory). At the top of the cycle is the design concept from the designer. It is passed to the Art department to do the art work required. After the Art deparment is down then the modellers creates the game opjects and maps.  Then the progrmamers  ETC on down the line.  If some in the design can not be possible by the programmers, (either equipment/drivers limitations or something else) then The process as to go back up the falls. This can cause a lot of lost in development time.

The way TR is developed now is by using SCRUMS.  A programming objective is decided from a list of priorities. A person takes the lead and is responsible for the objective. A team is formed around the objective having all the required skills and they work together as a team. The SCRUMS are set for a 1 month sprint. After a month the team displays what was accomplished and what was not accompliced. This way if there is a problem that prevents the object from being developed only a month of development time is lost.
 

What is a Scrum?

CuppaJo also covered how the builds are handled from development to QA to PTS and live.
The current game deployment in work is on thier internal server called the TRUNK. All the Scrum teams working on the code check the code in and out of the trunk as they work on it. When the deployment is ready to be deployed. the build on the trunk is frozen and branched off to s separate server location for QA. This is teh build that will be put on the PTS and then live.  The Branch is then built and QA does its testing to determine it if is ready for the PTS or is broke and need to go back to the trunk.

After QA it is then put on PTS for us to try and break it. Now here is the problem. If bug is found in either QA or by us on the PTS, the Devs will have to evaulate the required fix to determine if it can be applied to the Branch without cashing the build on the branch thus delaying the deployment. If the risk is low they can patch the branch and move on to the PTS. If the risk is too high, then it is sent to a Scrum to work on it to add to the trunk of a furture deployment. That is why sometime a bug found on the PTS is not fixed before it goes live.

Even with the Scrum  concept bugs and suggestions from the players will be at least 6-8 weeks before showing up. All depending on the priority and where it sits in the list.  This list is adjusted at the beginning of each Scrum cycle so its placement in the list can change.


« Last Edit: June 20, 2008, 04:38:16 PM by PegasusMD »
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Offline PegasusMD

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2008, 02:37:07 AM »
Lunch -
At Lunch I got to sit across from  Tom Potter and Kagasumi
I talked about the wargame map and made some suggestions Tom was interested in. Also covered some cafting ideas and on the fact some mobs (like the linkers bosses ) seem to be using thier special attacks ( like linkers instant heals) a little too often. It is hard to say which was done more, eating or talking.





After lunch came the part most of the community wants to know and the least subject I  can talk about.

Deployment 10

You remember in my previous post I talked about scrums and that the sprints were one month. Well  this friday was when the scrums presented thier accomplishments. So we got to see the new toys they were working on for deployment 10. The demo started off with the top ten list of priorities , which had eleven items listed on it.




Here is what I can say as they have already been mentioned.  Mind is changing. You say the list of skills in the friday feedback(FF). It is part of the effort to make alternate attribute builds more viable.

We saw the grey market vedors at work and how they spawn to thier location. As stated in the FF , they are in hidden location  and you have to find them.  Basicly you will be able to buy any type and color of item using prestige.

Graphics improvements specially for lower level systems have greatly improved. When comparing the FPS different between D9 and D10 was amazing.  Some of the Higher end systems may not see as much improvement but there is  improvement for those systems also. And there will be continue improvements in the future deployments as they look at how everything is rendered in the game.

In one of my pictures of the tour you may have noticed a triple barrel shotgun , I can not give the specs on it but they are working to give more varity in weapons.

We also saw briefly a couple of new level 50 instnaces and a couple of other items that people been asking for that I can not mention yet.

Dinner -

During dinner Richard had every Dev play musical tables so that we would have a chance to expressed our concerns with the game.  I was lucky and got to sit initally at the table with CuppaJo, Starr Long, and Richard. (I was next to Richard) .
Richard also had Poster size sheets of paper put up on the wall  titled "What would we change in the game" and "What we would add to the game". Throughout dinner we would add to the sheets.  We filled up three sheets. Dinner discussion went over the time schedule for dinner. We got back to the hotel at 11 pm.






The War College Attendees - All the attendees will have a NPC named for them in the game.



Addition pictures

General impression and additional information-

Overall I was quite pleased with the trip to the War College. Not only did I have fun but I saw a lot of items planned for TR that gives me a positive feeling on the future of the game. I also felt the devs got a lot out of it also. We talked and talked , covering a varity of subjects that were well recieved by the staff at DG.

We talked about eveything. We all had special areas in the game we are concerned about. Youngblood covered PvP, Line and Lanster covered aggro managment system and general AI. Also having the CP play more of a role what happens on a map near the CPs. Rothnang was concern about mind atttributes and making that type of build fun to play.  I covered more of the gerneral overall game play, crafting and why it is important to some people in the game. If nothing else until they have a new system in place at least develop a means to remove unwanted enhancments. But overall I think we covered the main concerns of the community.

Seeing how the development occurs,  hopefully we can provide meaningful  feedback. Clearly defining what is wrong, how it occurs and maybe some positive solutions that will help the devs fix the problem instead of spending valuable time trying to locate the cause of the problem. Also remember what may be high priority in your eyes may not be against the other priorites. But also remember the Priorites are relooked at every month so what started out high last month may be a lower priority this month and what may have been low maybe higher priority this month.

And I hope they continue with the War college with a longer lead time to allow some of the oversea players to particapate.


« Last Edit: June 20, 2008, 04:40:27 PM by PegasusMD »
Place your clothes and weapons where you can find them in the dark. - Heinlein
ingame name all servers - Pegasus
Have you heard the POP this morning?
"Close is not need with Nukes"

Offline Harleyquin

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report (in work)
« Reply #3 on: June 19, 2008, 03:44:50 PM »
I like my two pictures.   ;)
When stating a problem or bug please be as detailed and specific as possible.  Screen shots are also always helpful.  Thank you.

Offline Gangrel

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report (in work)
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2008, 02:52:12 AM »
*Note* SOMEONE please remind me to get my passport sorted out... either that or ship all the devs's over for a european meet up (could actually be cheaper you know ;) )
1) I reject your reality.... and substitute my own
2) Not to be used when upset... will void warranty
3) Stoke me a clipper i will be back for dinner
4) Never tell Gangrel to do anything... he will probably get it wrong
5) I have seen more intelligence from an NPC AI in TR beta, than from most MMO players.
6) BLOG ME!


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Offline PegasusMD

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2008, 04:49:11 PM »
This concludes my report.
Place your clothes and weapons where you can find them in the dark. - Heinlein
ingame name all servers - Pegasus
Have you heard the POP this morning?
"Close is not need with Nukes"

Offline teskon

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2008, 05:45:15 PM »
passport ? i could use my old one from the old gdr ... there's a soviet russian stamp in °g°, if i get through the customs with that ? :ώ

however, nice report, let's hope for something similar held in europe =) (held ? my englsih stuttres !)
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Offline smooth

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #7 on: June 21, 2008, 05:11:06 AM »
Couple of questions/observations....


One. 

Sorry..Hard hitting question here Peg....How many people do you get the feeling/see working on the game?  (don't mean to stir the pot, but, curious)

Did they seem to actually Take your advice, or just seem to want...(yes, gray line, but I know when someone is pulling my leg) (oh, I don't think this is a publicity stunt, just curious)

How is Richard looking for his Space Ride?


Harley, I like the lip ring *winks*

Critters is smoking as usual.

Cuppa, we need more input from you...been missing you Babe...*Grins*

PS how do you get a woman to check you in?   That is awesome.......
Someone has an attitude!

Offline teskon

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #8 on: June 21, 2008, 09:45:35 AM »
about the PS

a flight to austin/tx - 300$

the drive to the hotel - 50$

have a woman to check you in - priceless !


<•><•<>•><•>
the machine mother told us of the planet of your birth - we know how you have harmed this place, with your pollution, your violence, and your dischord - but when we arrive there, we will cleanse the surface of that place, and merge it, with the harmony of the many
<•><•<>•><•>

Offline Gangrel

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #9 on: June 21, 2008, 01:40:54 PM »
Yes, harley with the lip ring... somehow she is kinda how i imagined her... considering the avatar she has >.>
1) I reject your reality.... and substitute my own
2) Not to be used when upset... will void warranty
3) Stoke me a clipper i will be back for dinner
4) Never tell Gangrel to do anything... he will probably get it wrong
5) I have seen more intelligence from an NPC AI in TR beta, than from most MMO players.
6) BLOG ME!


Quote from: Lomez
WARNING! Swedish wall-of-text hits you for bork-bork-bork damage!

Offline PegasusMD

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #10 on: June 21, 2008, 03:05:07 PM »
 
Couple of questions/observations....


One. 

Sorry..Hard hitting question here Peg....How many people do you get the feeling/see working on the game?  (don't mean to stir the pot, but, curious)

from the number of offices and cubicals and people I actually saw  I would save about 50 .

Did they seem to actually Take your advice, or just seem to want...(yes, gray line, but I know when someone is pulling my leg) (oh, I don't think this is a publicity stunt, just curious)

I'm an old man that spent 20 years in the military. I can tell a snow job when I see it. The dev were honestly interested in what we had to say. Tom Potter to one of my suggests said to Kagasumi "That sound good. I think we can do that"


How is Richard looking for his Space Ride?

He is looking forward to the trip. also his training  is only half of a day so he has a lot of free time. So he does communitate back to the staff at DG frequently.

Harley, I like the lip ring *winks*

Critters is smoking as usual.

Cuppa, we need more input from you...been missing you Babe...*Grins*

PS how do you get a woman to check you in?   That is awesome.......
Place your clothes and weapons where you can find them in the dark. - Heinlein
ingame name all servers - Pegasus
Have you heard the POP this morning?
"Close is not need with Nukes"

Offline smooth

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #11 on: June 21, 2008, 03:47:44 PM »
Quote
from the number of offices and cubicals and people I actually saw  I would save about 50 .


Wow....Just Wow...


Thanks Peg  *grins*
Someone has an attitude!

Offline Lomez

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #12 on: June 21, 2008, 05:05:43 PM »
I think I read that another one of the attendees estimated 60-80 people over at... that other forum (let's not advertise their site more than necessary :P)


I can't come up with any questions atm, but I really appreciate that you took your time to write a detailed report. Always interesting to get an insight into their office, and lots of interesting pictures.
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Offline teskon

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #13 on: June 21, 2008, 05:54:35 PM »
i'm pretty sure it took them at least 2 weeks to get it all clean before the war college, for example the removal of the hardenened "pizza on the floor" and so on ... hrhr
<•><•<>•><•>
the machine mother told us of the planet of your birth - we know how you have harmed this place, with your pollution, your violence, and your dischord - but when we arrive there, we will cleanse the surface of that place, and merge it, with the harmony of the many
<•><•<>•><•>

Offline Avatea

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Re: PegasusMD's War College Report
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2008, 03:07:01 PM »
And the players' skeletons too...ohm err oops!