Christmas is around the corner. But before we took some time off to celebrate with friends and family, there were final tasks to complete, including the launch of alpha test round #4.
This week did not really go the way I had planned. First, I had to do a bit more customer work than scheduled, then the launch of a new game world over at AirlineSim took half a day instead of the anticipated half an hour and last but not least my car had a flat tire…two days before doing the drive to my family. So as you can imagine, squeezing in some quality dev time was hard. But not impossible. I actually managed to more or less finish the integration of all initial payment methods for our new payment system. That means that I “only” have to finish minor stuff now to get it ready for release. Whether I manage to do that before or after the end of the year remains to be seen, though. Fingers crossed :-)
Last week I wrote about how we want to change the way how the construction of buildings works and this week I implemented these changes. To recap: we want to remove the building module materials that are fabricated in the prefab plants completely. This allows everybody, not just owners of prefab plants, to build any building if they have the materials to do so. For starters I had to update our internal tool, the Material Editor, to be able to re-define what a building is and remove the old, unnecessary materials. I then designed a few more materials from which buildings are built, because we felt that just using plain steel and aluminium is a bit too easy. After fixing the old material tree and exporting it I adapted the server and database to be able to handle the changes. Since buildings are an integral part of every base and strongly connected to the production lines it took some time to get it right. Finally a few quick changes on the client side were necessary, but this was the least part.
I was working under a tiny little bit of time pressure since we wanted to start a new, longer-running alpha test before we all take a break over the Holidays and New Years Eve. I managed to implement everything and could start the fourth alpha test on Thursday afternoon. Right now the test runs smoothly and I hope it stays that way until I return to the office early next year. I am really excited to see if these changes make a difference and how the game’s economy evolves.
As always, we’d love to hear what you think: join us on the forums!