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Player Administration

When an Admin Comes Asking Questions.... (Posted by Ghost on Year 16 Day 59)
Victor Averros, Albert Stehonsam, and Leon Nightwalker have been banned for violating the rules. There is clear evidence of player...
[more]

Might take a while. Mine is worse than Reporter's salary. (Posted by Erek on Year 16 Day 57)
  Year 16 Day 57, 8:09 Erek banned player Keleko Telsh providing the following reason: Mul...
[more]

OOC Rules Violations (Posted by Selatos on Year 16 Day 56)
We have banned the following three players for various offenses including collecting inappropriate OOC information about other play...
[more]

Community News

Calling on all roleplayers! (Posted by Roan Axios on Year 16 Day 50)
The White Scenario (WS) team is looking for new moderators and trainers!  You might have noticed a bit of a downturn in ac...
[more]

Come one, Come all! Art Classes for the masses! (Posted by Jevon Lambright on Year 16 Day 35)
Onasha has taken it upon himself to begin a set of art classes aimed at encouraging new artists, or low to mid-level skilled arti...
[more]

NPC team needs YOU for quests (Posted by Ellias Aubec on Year 16 Day 16)
With quest progression going well, the NPC team needs committed players to help us write quests for people to engage in. Initiall...
[more]

Technical News

New Asims Announced (Posted by Selatos on Year 16 Day 59)
We have a few exciting staff announcements today. First, I'd like to congratulate our two new assistant simmasters (informally,...
[more]

Flavor Text Contest (Posted by Syn on Year 16 Day 42)
In a recent sync, the developers added the ability to set flavor text for item types. This was implemented for the purpose of spe...
[more]

Ad Issue (Posted by Selatos on Year 16 Day 41)
Hi everyone, you may have noticed that there is a problem where you get redirected to some spam sites, sometimes. This is being c...
[more]

(Posted by Selatos on Year 16 Day 59 15:54)

We have a few exciting staff announcements today.

First, I'd like to congratulate our two new assistant simmasters (informally, asims), Popara Anjiliac Diresto and Cornelius vi Cron, whose government names will be Leon and Strife respectively. They will be helping with the traditional asim duties: account issues, helping players affected by bugs, rules enforcement, etc. The current asim team now consists of Erek, Ghost, Leon, Strife, and Arjuna.

I'd also like to announce a promotion for one of our current asims, Arjuna, to a full administrator position. He will be in charge of asim management and the primary contact for any abuse or complaint issues. He will also be continuing and expanding his previous work as Galaxy Director to create a more detailed and vibrant in-game universe and oversee the creation and integration of new game content such as quests, in conjunction with the asim team.

Congratulations to everyone, we look forward to working together.  

(Posted by Roan Axios on Year 16 Day 50 20:56)

The White Scenario (WS) team is looking for new moderators and trainers! 

You might have noticed a bit of a downturn in activity on the WS Board these past two years, and you're not alone in that. And if you're also thinking back to the good times you had there, especially in that one scenario with that mercenary, and that bar, and those zombies (okay, maybe not such good times for your character), then you're still not alone! Instead of commiserating with your cat while writing your character's history on the Holocron, come join "White (and Red) Scenario Veterans Support Group," otherwise known as the WS Team.

We need experienced roleplayers with strong writing ability to be Moderators and Trainers. These positions are awarded a very generous salary of CPs every month for time spent reading and evaluating posts. Prior participation in at least one White Scenario is strongly recommended, but not required to apply. Visit the Moderator / Trainer Sign-Up thread to learn more.

Ever thought about GMing?

If moderating or training just isn't your thing, but you have a hankering for a good story set in the SWC universe, please consider a stint as a GM. The Scenario Request forum awaits your proposal of most ingenious plotting through which you will be afforded the opportunity to torture and/or entertain your fellow Combiner with your creative devices.

Lost but intrigued?

For those who don't know what all of this blathering is about, the White Scenario Board is for long-form roleplay with the opportunity to earn XP for your character. WS Moderators score the posts of participants to determine how much XP to award for each (and how many CPs a GM should earn for their moderation and story guidance). You're welcome to look through the Public Viewable Scenarios section of the WS Board for examples. RP Trainers, meanwhile, take new roleplayers through a ten part training curriculum in the RPG Centre to prepare them for scenario style roleplay in any one of the Combine's RP forums.  

(Edited by Roan Axios on Year 16 Day 50)
(Posted by Syn on Year 16 Day 42 17:16)

In a recent sync, the developers added the ability to set flavor text for item types. This was implemented for the purpose of special quest items and items for in-game events, but we would like to expand flavor text to existing item types as well, for informational and entertainment purposes.

Therefore, a thread has been opened in the Work for CPs forum where all creative individuals are invited to submit suggestions for flavor text. Further instructions and information about flavor text are included in the submission thread, and small amounts of CPs will be awarded for text used and for solid suggestions in general. There is no deadline.  

(Posted by Selatos on Year 16 Day 41 22:22)

Hi everyone, you may have noticed that there is a problem where you get redirected to some spam sites, sometimes. This is being caused by a bad ad being served by google; as far as I know there is nothing we can do until google resolves the issue from there end. I believe it has already been reported to them and we are just waiting for them to finish investigating. Thanks for your patience, I know this is a really annoying thing to have happening!  

(Posted by Arjuna on Year 16 Day 36 21:57)

With the increasing need for more members of the administrative team, we're once again looking to the players to find new Assistants to help with the day to day work of keeping the combine "functional"

 

Job description: Assisting and resolving players problems requiring manual help, using admin tools. Must be knowledgeable about the Combine and how it works. Willingness to set aside previous IC relations, to take strong player criticisms, and to spend frequent time on IRC to discuss administration actions and direction. Specifically would be working with; Ticketing system, join applications, multi-accounts, #swc-help, and player assistance. This position will require you to drop your character, and remove yourself from the IC universe. You will not be able to return to the same character later.

 

If interested, please email to Arjuna@swcombine.com and include the answers to the following questions:

 

Combine Questions

 

1. What is your Combine handle?

2. How long have you been with the Combine?

3. What have you done IC so far? What are you doing at the moment? What is your position in your faction?

4. Did you complete any tasks for your faction that could qualify you for the programmer team? like doing a website, setting up a member's DB or anything like this?

5. Could you name two people that have been in the Combine for at least two years who worked with you and may be willing to give a testimonial for you?

6. Why do you want to help us?

7. What do you think you can bring to the team?

8. Are you involved in any other online games, or RPGs of a similar nature? If so, please specify your position in them.

 

Real Life

 

1. Where do you live?

2. How old are you?

3. What do you do IRL?

4. How much time can you spend on the Combine in general and helping in particular?

5. Were you involved in any projects that would qualify you for the position?

 

Feel free to email/DM with any questions.

This posting will remain open until Year 16 Day 43  

(Edited by Syn on Year 16 Day 36)
(Posted by Syn on Year 16 Day 36 16:04)

Since the room maps tool was fixed at last, the current set of CP ships have had their final room map designs added. These were the winning designs from the room maps contest two years ago and the winners were already rewarded several months ago. If there are any issues with the maps, such as inaccessible rooms or missing room types, please file a bug report so it can be resolved. These designs were brought to you by:

Veltraa: Daisuke Haines
Strike: Temseti Wolf
Foray: Korinas Vildras
Shieldship: Adrian Kilstar
Herald: Lilith Delcroix
Dragonboat: Orgeno Kartan
Class 720: Cait Catra
578-R: Darlene Bazinga
S-250 Chela: Aiko Constantine
IRD Starfighter: Eirkefe Iyal  

(Edited by Syn on Year 16 Day 36)

Onasha has taken it upon himself to begin a set of art classes aimed at encouraging new artists, or low to mid-level skilled artists, into increasing their skillset. If you ever wanted to know how to do that one thing, or perhaps learn 2D or 3D art, now is the perfect time to do so!

Subjects include general art/image theory, 2D drawing, and 3D modeling. Their are classes for all skill levels. The link to the main schedule is here, or you can head to our public art forum:

http://www.swcombine.com/forum/thread.php?thread=66538&page=0

If you have questions, DM Onasha or myself, we will be more than happy to do our best at answering.

 

Head Art Penguin  

(Posted by Selatos on Year 16 Day 35 20:20)

Update to revision d8d43317dfffcb457a41e7a2fe13da18e49673fa

Bugs:
- Can no longer buy items to be auctioned before the auction begins (Bug #3640)
- Special characters displayed correctly in XML exports (Bug #3188)
- "Command: Board Entity" affects Squads now (Bug #3605 and #3606)
- Fixed broken link for the support page (Bug #3622)
- Fixed broken link for #swc-help (Bug #3623)
- If a faction/individual takes control of an unowned planet while a slab is being built, the slab is still built (Bug #3630)
- Fixed art bugs #3596 and #3635

Rules:
- Updated the Terms of Service to reflect the current SWC rules and correctly represent SWC as a browser-based online game
- Updated the Facility Income rules to clarify that FI runs on the last day of every month at 17:00 server time
- Added ECM and Sensors to applicable entities on rules summary pages
- HP on race pages now uses current equation for health. Gives range of initial hp for each race at level 1. Added link at top of content to explanation of hp
- Replaced mat images with large version for mining rules table
- Many improvements to HTML structure including fewer deprecated tags and less inline styling

Tweaks:
- Flavor text visible for items that have it on the Equipment page
- Fixed five missing table indexes which should improve performance on main
- Market query performance should be dramatically improved as well, due to a complete rewrite
- City Designer now respects user skin
- LISP Changelog: Fixed exceptions in get-eta, get-destination, and get-location; added the ability to create flash messages (the green/blue/red boxes that come up when you do something in game).

Tools:
- Database optimization improved asim tool performance dramatically
- New Property Editor to manage per entity-type generic properties
- New git web UI is ready for managing dev server's status
- Completed git migration for the implementation team's version control system
- Room tool fixed again, should be able to create room maps this time

Hotfixes: (you may have noticed these already)
- Increased the volume of medikits and toolkits so they can no longer be stacked inside of themselves
- Join Team and IRC Team icons added to the staff bars on the forums
- The following Darkness-owned planets received a ranch, zoo, or wildlife preserve for the hatching of Mysterious Eggs: Malastare (at 4, 10), Nuswatta (4, 4), Vortex (7, 3), Muunilinst (4, 6), Kiffex (5, 3), Kinyen (4, 6), Gravlex Med (7, 6), Tibrin (5, 2), Vinsoth (1, 4), Togoria (3, 1), Maridun (6, 7), Nimban (8, 2), Huk (5, 2), Brodo Asogi (5, 6), Dorin (4, 6), Giju (6, 4), Aleen (6, 4), Devaron (9, 3), Denhui-Eight (8, 1), Antar4 (1, 2), Dressel (5, 5), Bothawui (5, 3), Chadra (3, 4), Toola (3, 6), Af`El (8, 4), Barab I (4, 3)

The most important thing that happened for this sync was our switch from svn to git (you may have noticed our revision number is now a 40 character hash instead of an actual number). Much of our time was spent developing a user interface to manage branches and code on the dev server. We've also started work on a re-implementation of squads and parties due to the massive number of issues with these features, as well as general work on the concept of power pools to replace the current city-level facility power system. Power pools will generalize the concept of powering facilities: a number of power generators combine to supply a "pool," and facilities are assigned to that pool at a managing structure (such as a CCC). This allows for redundancy and segmentation of the power grid on a planet. Pools are visible on a planet scale, rather than a city scale, allowing them to be better protected in interior locations. Full rules will be posted prior to release. Repair is still in testing and a new UI is being developed for it to make it look nicer.

There was also an (apparently long standing) issue with the galactic market, brough to my attention by people fighting over entities purchased from Cloud City's dissolution. It was previously possible to purchase an item during a short period of time before the auction began, which was unintended behavior. This had been reported before but it seems that due to miscommunications, it wasn't properly identified as a bug and believed to be the correct behavior. We will be reversing all purchases made in this manner in the past 60 days, refunding money spent, and relisting the entities as proper three week auctions.  

(Edited by Selatos on Year 16 Day 35)
(Posted by Mikel von Bianchi on Year 16 Day 23 13:58)

Hello everyone. As Selatos indicated in the most recent sim news, we've been working on developing a new set of rules for the Force. We've recognized for a while that the current rules simply can't be integrated with how combat in the Combine has evolved. Keeping that in mind, we've come up with a more streamlined and coherent set of rules that work very well together, and integrate into the rest of the Combine to avoid Force users being gamebreakers while still enabling them to contribute something special.

Here is the link to the new rules: Click me!

I'd like to explain some of the changes we've made. First, we've removed the concept of "facets", and along with those the detriment that players would see when becoming Force Sensitive at a higher level. Second, most of the skills have changed, as I said, to be more in-line with the Combine's combat system philosophy. With the removal of facets, Force users will no longer have skill points to assign upon becoming FS. You will gain 1 Force skill point per Force level to spend on leveling Force skills, which continue to level in the same manner as normal skills.

Additionally, while the Force Meter has not been entirely removed as was once considered, we have lessened the number of skills in which it plays a factor, so that it remains a largely RP aspect of the Force. Using light and dark skills will, in some undetermined fashion, affect the Force Meter, allowing Force users to modify their FM through the use of skills.

Finally, as I've alluded to before, there will be a change coming with regards to Force cooldowns. Specifically, Force users will have a number of "slots" that may be used for Force actions, and each Force action will take up a number of slots for the length of their activation/cooldown.  

(Edited by Mikel von Bianchi on Year 16 Day 23)
(Posted by Selatos on Year 16 Day 23 6:14)

I just wanted to share a quick word on development progress. We haven't had a sync in a few weeks but I assure you we're still working on things. This is finals time and then holidays snuck up, so the team hasn't had as much availability, and we've also been transitioning to a new version control system (git, from svn), which has taken a lot of time out of useful feature production. But, in the future this should improve the build stability because it provides more careful control over which code is slated for release and which is still experimental.

Apart from that, I've also got some new rules announcements. The first version of the new set of force skills and mechanics has been created, and Mikel will be posting more information on the details shortly. The rules pages will be updated no later than the actual release of any in-game mechanics but likely much sooner. We're also introducing a new mechanic known as "stochastic rounding," which will be used (almost) everywhere that we currently have a round mechanism for integer stats. Stochastic rounding rounds a number like 4.3 to 4 70% of the time and to 5 30% of the time, such that if we take a large number of 4.3s, round them in this fashion, and then take the average of the rounded values, it works out to 4.3 (rather than normal rounding which works out to 4, or ceiling rounding which works out to 5).

This was motivated by an issue identified during repair development, but it should improve the "smoothness" of other game behavior (such as combat). In particular, repair works by creating an action that ticks every 30 minutes to heal the building partly and then deduct credits and RMs--however, by rounding, we either always take too few RMs or too many, resulting in a total repair cost that is very different from the expected amount. With the stochastic rounding you will fluctuate in how much you pay per step in the repair process, but across repairing the entire building you will see the correct average cost. In combat, this will reduce the quantization effects that plague several weapons: it will be possible to have actual fractional DPS values based on a several-round observation, rather than being binned to a lower damage output with several weapons until you cross the next rounding threshold.

Finally, we are also changing the underlying mechanics of combat, but the objective is to have it play (almost) the same way. Specifically, we're changing dodge into a roll-vs-threshold system (similar to how stealth works) in order to allow for accuracy and dodge buffs that aren't tied to stats. For instance, currently you roll a 0-5 value, add it to your skills, and compare against your opponent's skills. Unfortunately this has no (clean) way to "add 10% accuracy." Using a threshold system in the future, we will take the skills, index them into a table to select the threshold, apply accuracy and dodge modifiers, and then roll 1-100 to compare. The thresholds will be chosen to provide the same distribution of hits and misses as we have currently. This change shouldn't affect gameplay right now, but it provides opportunity for more items in the future (think R&D) and for Force Skills to work more reasonably with combat.

We are also changing how armor absorption works, very dramatically. We will no longer use a subtractive armor system where the AP functions like additional HP that must be removed before actual damage happens. Instead, all weapons will be gaining a new stat called 'firepower,' and armor reduction will be a percentage of incoming damage, based on the armor points of the target and the firepower of the attackers's weapon (plus buffs and debuffs for both sides). Initial values for firepower stats will be chosen based on numerical optimization in order to provide the "closest" possible behavior to the current system, in terms of effectiveness, although you should be aware that it is impossible to achieve a perfect match. This change accomplishes two things: it simplifies traditional "effective HP" calculations as you might see in an MMO or ARPG (with the dodge changes, real eHP is now calculable in a general form), and it makes it possible to have R&D for weapons and armor at all. By adjusting the firepower and armor points in a way that affects absorption but not raw output damage, our in-game weapons will not scale to the point where unarmored targets die instantly. But, the system will retain the constant struggle between new weapons that do more (effective) damage and new armor that blocks more of it.

These are just initial "heads up" or preliminary warnings about upcoming changes. More details will be announced as code changes actually happen to implement these things, and a rules page with modern combat equations to reflect all of the changes described above will be posted before anything changes on main. 

(Posted by Ellias Aubec on Year 16 Day 16 22:21)

With quest progression going well, the NPC team needs committed players to help us write quests for people to engage in. Initially we will be looking at more tutorial style quests to get new players used to how the game works, but in the future we will then move into more expansive quests and galaxy-wide style quests as well.

So what we need are players that are knowledgable in the scripting feature (here) and are interested in helping out. If you have an interesting scrip that you want to show off your skills, go ahead - might make the difference when we decide.

   

(Edited by Ellias Aubec on Year 16 Day 16)
(Posted by Ellias Aubec on Year 16 Day 16 22:13)

It is the end of the old Deathmatch - time for a new one! Go vote for your favourite and leave the others in the dust. Also new grudge matches for you to peruse, with one timely one as well - no promises that the ASims will actually follow through with it.