Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

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+Colibri
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Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

Post by +Colibri »

Back in July I posted in Excelsior Daily, a summary of what's been going on recently: viewtopic.php?p=73510#p73510

So here's what's been going on over the last few months:

The housing crisis is resolved, thanks to opening of a new housing facet Maral and bringing back IDOC Events (announced house falls). Although these solutions are quite simple, they would cause an avalanche of requests to move/merge houses. And although it's simple to merge 2 houses together, moving hundreds of houses, and reconfiguring those mini cities comprised of 10 or more houses can be very time consuming, so this all wouldn't be possible without our new House Positioning system, which allows players to move, merge, and even resize houses. And with an interface that neatly displays which tiles are obstructing the placement.

Although we got this feature about 3 months ago, I still often see how happy players are when they first try to place a house and notice this system.
house placement.png
house placement.png (521.53 KiB) Viewed 3251 times


We fixed a ton of various bugs, everything from small wrinkles in the code and typos, to more serious hidden bugs - those that can't be recreated on the test server, or pop up only occasionally, but still cause a lot of problems. The major victory here was a handful of issues in our database caching layer - the multi-threaded component that makes it possible to work with large datasets in the background (such as all the chat history in the helpsystem), without the game lagging for 100's of milliseconds or even longer, every time anyone uses anything that relies on this functionality (yeah, it wouldn't be playable).

https://baseballtrainingguy.com/swing-i ... ug-squash/
bugsquashcover.png
bugsquashcover.png (64.46 KiB) Viewed 3246 times


And technical upgrades from behind the scenes. Our old secondary server was acting up, and since it's time for a new one, we now have a HP ML110 - a "true" server, with a Xeon E5-1660v3 processor, 128GB ECC RAM, hardware raid, and SSDs. Basically, our server is not just "RunUO.exe + scripts", it's a bunch of other databases and services. All of this is copied in realtime to this server, so in case the main one goes down, we should have minimal downtime, without any long-time revert. I've experienced a 3-week revert as a player, and heard of much longer reverts on some servers, and that shouldn't happen here.

This server also runs secondary/auxiliary services, and it's where I load up backups when debugging or searching for some item.
hp server.jpg
hp server.jpg (35.36 KiB) Viewed 3275 times




Worth noting - most tickets are answered and resolved within 24 hours. There is still a good chunk of back-end internal things to take care of before we start crunching the content again.

I'm currently working on getting auctions back up. The main thing is it will simplify organizing/setup of auctions, and with most of the deeds that are sold to be functional, so that they can be applied right away without sending a ticket and waiting for staff. So there will likely be an auction in the end of November, as well as early-to-mid december, to make up for all the gold we didn't sink during the year :)


Thank you all for your support of Excelsior! Whether by playing, donating, inviting friends to play, or something else.


After monthly auctions are reinstated, the wishlist/todolist is approximately the following (and maybe not in this particular order):
- Setting up official discord server. Well, it takes all about 15 minutes to open a discord server and post a link somewhere, though we've had issues with voice chat in the past, so this means setting up voice recordings, and user identification (linking discord username with the shard username). That's the only way we can have an official discord server, where shard rules can be enforced.
- Mentor Society hiring and finishing a few things that are still on the todo list. You can actually apply right now, in north Britain there's the Mentor Building (formerly Youth Center), there's an application stone at the entrance.
- A particular un-named component on the server that will make collaboration in game development possible, i'll post more when i have a more clear view on this.
- Getting portal v2 back online. Besides being a chat interface for public/guild chat and private messages, it's also a tool for general interaction with the shard, like game development.
- Events, also perhaps reopening one of the seasonal quests, updating the wiki, wrapping up old unfinished stuff, etc, the list is endless.
+Colibri, Administrator of UO Excelsior Shard

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fixxer1963
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Re: Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

Post by fixxer1963 »

After monthly auctions are reinstated, the wishlist/todolist is approximately the following (and maybe not in this particular order):
- Setting up official discord server. Well, it takes all about 15 minutes to open a discord server and post a link somewhere, though we've had issues with voice chat in the past, so this means setting up voice recordings, and user identification (linking discord username with the shard username). That's the only way we can have an official discord server, where shard rules can be enforced.
- Mentor Society hiring and finishing a few things that are still on the todo list. You can actually apply right now, in north Britain there's the Mentor Building (formerly Youth Center), there's an application stone at the entrance.
- A particular un-named component on the server that will make collaboration in game development possible, i'll post more when i have a more clear view on this.
- Getting portal v2 back online. Besides being a chat interface for public/guild chat and private messages, it's also a tool for general interaction with the shard, like game development.
- Events, also perhaps reopening one of the seasonal quests, updating the wiki, wrapping up old unfinished stuff, etc, the list is endless.
Soo.. by Chanukkah?

Just kidding. Looks like a mountain of chores.
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Re: Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

Post by Iltar »

It's great indeed that gms do so much for shard, and as programmer I understand that these are very complex features, especially housing. But players want new content too. Black Belt quest is cool, but it would be good even to just add spawn of strange mobs to some dungeons when you want to relax and do something simpler :)
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Re: Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

Post by Slartibartfast »

Thanks for all the work, +C! I'm loving the automation/self-serve stuff you've been implementing. That's promising for the long-term future of the server since you'll be able to focus more on the fun stuff like events and content once this back-end stuff is in a good spot. Kudos to you!
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Re: Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

Post by Iago Venport »

Thanks +C for all your hard work over the years. Being that I'm notorious for annoying staff for perfectly placed ohhh 35 or so houses I definitely appreciate the new house placing/merging system. :dance

-Iago
Last edited by Iago Venport on Thu Nov 14, 2019 9:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

Post by qbf »

Happy to know there's a new backup server that will hopefully allow you to maintain stability and test things effectively. Excellent work +C. I think the direction you are taking things with the coding is perfect. I agree with Slartibarfast, the more automated these processes become the quicker you can answer pages and keep a closer eye on all the AFK balron killing going on...

Keep up the good work.

-JW
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Re: Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

Post by fixxer1963 »

qbf wrote:Happy to know there's a new backup server that will hopefully allow you to maintain stability and test things effectively. Excellent work +C. I think the direction you are taking things with the coding is perfect. I agree with Slartibarfast, the more automated these processes become the quicker you can answer pages and keep a closer eye on all the >>>>>>>>>>>AFK balron killing<<<<<<<<<<<< going on...

Keep up the good work.

-JW
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Re: Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

Post by qbf »

Yeah and at the auction one of the AFKers is going to buy up some quality items too... it annoys me. I would honestly prefer to see Balrons only spawn in fel just to stop the AFKers... they are there CONSTANTLY... sometimes at keyboard. If you want to check if they are at keyboard or not use the polymorph spell. It ruins their macro and they will kill steal off you. I have screen shots of them repeatedly AFKing and kill stealing balrons I get to first when I am poly'd.
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Re: Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

Post by Gaara »

qbf wrote:I would honestly prefer to see Balrons only spawn in fel just to stop the AFKers.
They'll make rail scripts to clear Fel then. I remember this same issue years back with afk weapon levelers. Also, i wouldn't give pointers out in public for the afkers to see how their scripts are messing up.
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Re: Excelsior In Review (Mid 2019)

Post by qbf »

Gaara wrote:They'll make rail scripts to clear Fel then.
Just spawn the ballys really far apart so that it is more efficient to actually play the game to get your gold. Or spawn only a couple per dungoen. Or use a combo of ilshenar and fel for all the bally spawns. Or just drop the gold by half and then only real desperados will AFK them for gold...
Gaara wrote: Also, i wouldn't give pointers out in public for the afkers to see how their scripts are messing up.
I mainly put that out there so that people can test themselves if the person farming Balrons next to them is AFK or not... its easy, just poly yourself and their script stops hiding them and instead will rush your bally and kill it and then when you question them over the course of the next 4 hours and get no response you can page on them for AFKing... maybe when enough pages add up on the same culprit they'll be found guilty without hard evidence or something... I dunno. And secondly, I paged and screen shot it (I still have screen shot) and the admin response is "I'll keep an eye on it" (no disrespect +C, it is hard to keep tabs on everyone, +A used to do a fair bit of AFK checking but haven't seen him in an age) so I don't think it matters whether the AFKers know or not. At least I know if I want to farm balrons along side them I just don't go in poly'd and their script will auto hide them instead of kill stealing from me...

This thread is starting to get off topic....
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