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Still here. - latest update
By: Talibar Zukro , on: 2014-09-13 10:08:42
Not much on the development side I'm afraid. My family and I have just moved to a new home, so everything is all over the place. This week we will be going on vacation. But once I am back, we will get things going again. Sorry for the lack of appearance.
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Travel System Update and Handle Changes
By: Talibar Zukro , on: 2014-08-22 23:44:56
First off, I wanted to say that progress on Factions is moving along very nicely. I may be able to actually make it for the end of the weekend. We shall see. But it looks promising. Forums will also be running again soon.

Now on to the travel system... I will be implementing a bare bone system for travel that will work as a temporary stand in. Everyone will randomly be placed in a hangar on a certain planet. You will all default to the local planets starport. From there, you can take the transport system to a different location. Depending on where you are travelling, you will need to pay a certain amount from your credits. This is a temporary system as I mentioned. Travelling will gain credits for you. These are currently the only planets you may travel to from the start: Coruscant, Corellia, Endor, Tatooine, Hapes, Falleen, Yavin 4, Naboo, Hoth, Bespin. As the game expands, more systems and planets will be added as well. This change will occur possibly next week.

One last thing... Handles. Many handles are not legitimately given. I will mark in the database who has a bad handle. Once that happens, when you log in, the game will not allow you to continue until you choose a new handle. When you have that new handle, an administrator will have to accept it and then you will be able to proceed once more. This again should be sync'd next week. Right now though, I am giving priority to factions so that must come first.
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By: Talibar Zukro , on: 2014-08-17 21:31:37
Alright.. I have delayed bringing in any new features into a sync as I am working out some kinks due to factions. Some issues are occurring for factions. But when it is all said and done, the following "initial" features will be available for everyone who joins a faction:

1. - Private faction forum. You won't be able to exchange OOGP just yet. But you will have the generic start up forums for your faction.
2. - You will be able to submit a join request as well as leave a faction.

For Faction Leaders/Owners, you will start with the following features:

1. - Forum Moderation for your faction.
2. - Accepting/declining members.
3. - Banning Members.
4. - Viewing member list
5. - Viewing your factions credits and OOGP.
6. - Adding to the faction Timeline. This will remain permanent. Once you submit an entry, it can not be removed. All future leaders/owners will be able to see it.
7. - Submitting personalized Faction news for only your faction.
8. - Ability to post on the GNN for the respective category.
9. - Faction leadership privileges. Only one for now. This will handing over leadership to another user if you choose.

The game will start with 4 factions and not the original 3 I had in mind. We will have the Galactic Empire, The Rebel Alliance, The Hapes Government and Black Sun. We already have a leader for the GE. But I am taking applicants for the other factions. PM me if you are interested.

The faction feature is planned to be finished by the end of the week as long as my personal life goes as planned. If not the end of this week, a good chance that it will be next week. Keep watching this spot!
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Update to the Home/About page
By: Talibar Zukro , on: 2014-08-03 15:12:51
I have gone ahead and updated our Home page link(Or the first page everyone see's when coming to the site). Let me know what you think!
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Who needs permissions anyway?!?!?!?
By: Talibar Zukro , on: 2014-08-03 14:55:53
I have sort of taken the liberty of turning the news page into a development diary until I release the immense updates I have performed on the staging server.

One of the pitfalls of web sites in general falls on permissions. I shouldn't say it is a pitfall. Permissions really help keep things in order and undesired things from happening. Unfortunately, permissions can become sort of annoying. In one sense you make something more secure and much cooler. Then you realize you just broke 100 other "Important" things you really needed to work. Part of the reason why I take long times away from the game when creating a project so complex is because sometimes the smallest of the small can take away functionality. You are then left doing a search that can take hours and some times days to find where the culprit went wrong.

For example. I recently had a permission setting which would allow you to assign a group to a forum category and to a particular forum under that category. Works well for categories. I can transport myself to a topic when I manually type the address in the address bar and my permissions are there to view the topic. However, click on the topic and your permissions go nuts. I spent 3 days (Not 72 hours straight, mind you) trying to find the culprit in about 3,000 lines of code. The reason behind the error? I missed putting an underscore on a database table name. Yes, I missed this: _ . I know many my wonder why I disappear at times and this is the reason. Either I am taking a very long time searching for a mis-typed name or looking for where I missed the comma or semi colon, etc... Or I may have went through hundreds of hours of searching, finding the solution and would now like to take a rest. Sometimes you need to step back and when you come back to the task at hand refreshed, you work faster and more adequately.

In addition to the more annoying things like that, you have to think of everywhere permissions would need to work. So for instance, in the sense of a forum, you have these issues to contend with when it comes to permissions:

1)Who can view the forum: Anyone, a member group, a certain individual and/or administrators?
2)Permissions need to be set for the board, the categories, the forum, the topic, the mod/admin/gm tools and the editing feature. Miss one of these, and though a hacker would not be able to see the categories or topics... He can take a guess at an id number and pop right through to edit someone's post or view a topic he shouldn't be seeing.
3)Adding permissions for a particular forum means adding permissions for a certain category. Easy enough. You add a group to a forum, you can automatically add it for the categories. Otherwise, even though you have access to the forum, if you do not have access to the category, you wont see the forum.
4)Removing permissions becomes more complicated. If you remove a group from a forum you can remove it from the category too, then you wont see that forum or category any longer. However, if your group is assigned to other forums under that category... You can not automate a process to remove the group from the category. Now you have to make sure that there are no other places the group belongs to before removing it from the category. Is this hard? No, but requires a lot of concentration not to break something else. And finally...
5)This all becomes even more complicated when you have sub-forums within a forum.

I say finally... But these are the big things to worry about when it comes to forum permissions.

With all that being said.. A few posts ago I mentioned that there were some bugs. I am getting closer and closer to getting rid of those bugs. I know this seems like I am taking a long time. But please take a look at this site. Take a look at the features. Then imagine all the tools you are not seeing that administrators see. I have coded all this with my own code. I am not borrowing software from anyone or anywhere. The last time I had my project manager tally up the lines of code I had put into this (That is not to mention the lines missing from edits or mistakes or upgrades that I have done in the past 2 years) it came to about 146,000 lines. A 350 page novel contains at most 120,000 sentences. So, you can see there is a lot of work that goes into this.

Let me tell you though.. The ACL Permissions in this game are going to be extraordinary. I only hope I make it hacker proof as well. But, I just wanted everyone to know how hard I have been working on this. This is not to show off or gloat. But I writing this because I have recently received e-mails stating that I am not working hard enough or fast enough on this game. I can understand the frustration, but I also have a personal life on top of writing such a complex site and game on top of the site. For all of you who are waiting patiently, I thank you for your support and patience! Keep coming back to read more updates.
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Character Stories
By: Talibar Zukro , on: 2014-08-02 21:21:07
I decided that in addition to the SIM Aspect of the game and The Roleplaying aspect, I would also include a story aspect to the game.

There is a lot about your character we do not know. We are starting this game right as the battle of Endor is ending. Your character is a major player in the universe. So, why haven't I heard of you?!?!?!? Hence, I will be adding a couple of new features for character development. I am going to do this in three ways.

1) Roleplay Forums. Yes, we have scenarios and we have a freestanding RP forum. But I will add character based RP Forums which will be strictly based on your character and will allow others to join in on your story. The thread starter would get 15XP per post while everyone who joins would earn 10XP. Mind you these forums will be moderated for abuse. For every RP that comes to a satisfying conclusion, the thread starter will receive an additional 1000XP and participants 500 additional XP. Once concluded(Not abandoned), a moderator will check the status of RP and if he feels that some deserve more XP than they received, well, then so be it. These RP's are meant to serve as a prequel story to your character. These are public and viewable by anyone. The thread starter will also receive OOGP based on their performance and moderation.

2) Character stories. Now I personally like this idea and had wished some other games incorporated this. A Character story can be a complete novelization or a simple short story of one of your characters previous adventures. How will one be rewarded on this? You will receive 500 XP for each story you submit(Pending moderator examination). Based on what our mods think of your story, you will receive additional XP as well as OOGP for the story. All stories are publicly viewable and can be found under your profile or under our stories section(That will be added eventually). For every like you receive for your story, you will receive an additional 10 XP. I am really hoping for some crazy creativity here.

3)Personal Character timeline. Now, I already want to say that there will be a social networking feature built into the game already. This is not it. The timeline is how you see your characters story progress. There will be elements that only you can see, that the whole public can see or who you can choose to allow to see. It is sort of an expanded Biography from your profile with more restrictive access and such.

I am really trying to create a rich history of our game to compliment the on-going story that everyone will be participating in. However, in doing so things can become confused. So to make things less confusing, as things happen in-game, there will be an auto-processing system that will record major events for planets, cities, facilities, ships, sectors and systems and keep a timeline of it. Moderators and admins will keep a timeline of the game going as well for public viewing. Factions will have personal timelines. News articles will be archived. And now, players will have a timeline of their own. Why do all this? Because the game needs to be consistent. Before creating a story or jumping into one, do some research. Make it all make sense and flow smoothly. It will be hard and it will certainly not be perfect. But with enough effort, it will still make things interesting. Just had a brainstorm this evening and figured this would be a great thing to add to the game. I will keep you posted to its progress.
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A decision has been made regarding the User Base
By: Talibar Zukro , on: 2014-08-02 10:46:58
I evaluated all the work that would be required to convert every registered user to the new database that is on our staging server. Unfortunately, I can not move all your accounts to the new system once it is implemented. It would take weeks of work and I would rather spend that time programming features and fixing bugs to tell you the truth. My other reasoning for this is that there are a few characters with inappropriate names and we would need to change that. The best way to do that is with a complete reset.

This is not happening now, but within the next few weeks. You will all be sent an e-mail notification of the reset and the fact that you would need to re-register just a few days prior to it happening. There will also be a news post a few days earlier.

On a side note... On our staging server there has been a change to your location screen. In fact, under the "surroundings" category will now replace "Beings Around You" with "At Your Location". A bit more generalized. Below the "Surroundings" Category will contain additional links for creating fixtures, building facilities, etc... In the "At your Location" Link, the idea will remain the same. However, you will see a bit more than what you see now. You will have a travel tool, a room function area(Cockpit, casino, etc...), a section which will display all the loose items available for pick up, and the chat section(Still in Progress). Will be neat once in full action. Keep looking here for more of Dev News.
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Programming latest
By: Talibar Zukro , on: 2014-07-26 12:01:52
Sorry for the delay of appearance on my end. I have been programming on and off on an staging server to test some features without compromising any of the user accounts.

I am thinking at this point that because of how a lot of the new features are going to be programmed, that I will have to reset the game accounts all together. Not sure yet...

Here is what I am sure of:

I am going to require some assistance in the future in the form of some full time administrative volunteers. That means that I may need some players to focus more on development than on game play. At least for a bit of time. The administrative assistance I would mostly need is game universe design(Creating ships, vehicles, room maps, etc...).

Furthermore, I will be creating three factions soon. I want to keep the amount of features simple until the game has expanded enough to allow for more factions. We will start with The Rebel Alliance and The Galactic Empire as well as a mercenaries group of my creation. So I will need some leaders for this.

Also an FYI for you... I will be removing planetary travel in order to get a full traveling system working. What I will be doing is adding a space station to the game where you will all be located in. It will be located in an outer rim location and have about 12 rooms to travel between. A travel system will not be available until we have more planets and systems within the game. However, Once the location reset occurs, you will be able to move between rooms. Each room will have a live chat feature allowing you all to communicate with each other without delay as long as your browser allows Javascripts to run. Furthermore, One room will be a casino so that you have a chance at winning some credits and another room will have a market so that you can purchase some items to start with.

If I choose to reset the game character base, which is very likely, Everyone will start automatically with enough credits to purchase at least one weapon and item plus a random amount of credits that can be between 1 and 100,000,000 credits more than the base credits. Don't worry, not everyone or a lot of people will start with too many credits. But everyone will get enough to start with what the game has. Remember, there will be a casino. Work with that.

What have I been doing on the private server? Well a few things:

1) I totally revamped how permissions work. Now we have administrative, forum and user permissions. I will be adding Faction permissions in soon as well.

2) Added a faction forum type. This, when the public server is updated, will show up as a new board at the top of the forums page. The faction you belong to will have its forums appear there. If there is a forum you do not have permission to view, it will not appear. ***Please note the following after this are still being worked on*** If your faction decides to release a few forums to the public, everyone can see those forums. Forums will also allow you to add users or factions to the permissions so that not everyone in the galaxy can view those forums. Good for allied situations or if you own multiple factions that will work together, etc...

Every faction will be allowed a base number of forums they can create at start up which will be 4. In addition to that, each faction can create departments. At start up, you can only create 3 departments. Each department can start with 2 additional forums each. In order to purchase the ability to add more departments or even add more forums to a department or faction, you will need to use OOGP as this is a server feature. Factions will have access to all the OOGP that the owner has. OOGP can not be traded amongst players. However, players can donate OOGP to their factions. Their faction leaders can purchase or reward donations if they choose. Once the exchange has been made however for the OOGP, the player can no longer obtain them back. As long as the faction is in existance, you will always be allowed to delete or create as many forums and departments as you have purchased.

3)Forum updates.. Forums can now add groups, individual players, factions, RPG Scenario members, faction leaders or force users to a forum or forum category. Forums can in addition to the above, be password protected. Sub-forums have also been added to the forums as well as some administrative tools. ***In Progress*** Scenario tools are still in progress. This is a bit harder to do as it does require a lot of work.

4) The last feature I added was a basic Faction joining tool. Leaders can accept or deny users who want to join as well as expel users. You wont have much else to work with other than the private forums for your faction and a general news posting feature.

All these added things still have bugs in them, but I am working on them. I know it has been a long and drawn out ride, but bare with me. Eventually this will be a great game, I promise!
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Forums: WIPED
By: Talibar Zukro , on: 2014-04-15 19:28:09
OK, forums are wiped. Please refrain from adding new posts until we repost on the news that you can. Thank you for your cooperation.
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FINAL WARNING: Forums will be wiped Tomorrow
By: Talibar Zukro , on: 2014-04-13 22:21:55
That is right. Tomorrow I am wiping all the forums. So if there were any details or RP's you were looking to save, please do so now. You have been warned.

Thank you.
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