It's been a turbulent year, as EVERYONE is aware, and we have not been immune to the fallout. I thought it would be easy to chalk up the downtime and delay to covid and all that has happened as a result, but it all comes out as excuses. Truth is I think all this came along at a time when I was on the verge of burnout and the stay at home orders back in the spring suppressed whatever creativity I had left. Issues with bugs came to a head in April and I made the decision to take the game offline as the only way I could see catching up on these issues. I think we were at that point anyway where it was time to close the doors in order to make the necessary changes needed for the relaunch, but these bugs and being trapped at home compounded the issue. I basically pulled the plug and hissed at my laptop anytime it dared catch my eye. Washington State and especially Seattle have been exceedingly cautious regarding the virus so for April, May, and June, the state was shut down (I'm not here to debate the merit of that decision, only to point out its impact on me and the game). I couldn't even go hiking, a great source of game inspiration, as all the national and state parks and forests were also closed. On top of that, I finished my Associate's Degree in March and was preparing to work up until the fall when I'd start on my bachelor's degree. Covid struck again. Work did not officially resume until July, which pushed back school plans to January. The hissing at the laptop turned into full blown ignoring it. There are other contributing factors that have made it even more difficult to return to the game, but they are even more personal than what I've already shared but no less devastating to game progress over the last 5 months. So I'm taking a page out of the corporate playbook and chalking it all up to covid and leaving it at that.
Now that I've gone ahead and made all the excuses anyway, I think I'm ready to move on and get back to work. I am creating a fresh build to work from with all the updated changes before introducing any items or players. Yes it has all been wiped, but I have saved all progress right up until the game was shut down. It is still my full intention to rebuild characters that have contributed to the game over the years and will be handling that via an email invitation to return once we reach that point. It is my sincere hope to relaunch the game early spring 2021, between Feb and April. Previous players will be invited back before then to help stress test things and to get a head start on the rebuilds so they do not take away from the opening.
Starting next week, Saphira and I will be updating items across the world. This work includes the addition of limits on item repairs (weapons and armor only) as well as adjusting all shop inventories and treasure drops. This work has to be completed before we can bring players back into the game. I will have more details regarding specific progress in the Game Updates section of the boards.
Lastly, I know it's been difficult being in the dark about things and for that I sincerely apologize. There's nothing professional about the lack of information provided during these past months and that doesn't exactly inspire confidence in receiving future updates on the game's progress. In the past I've told myself it wasn't as important to keep up with these updates because things were constantly changing and the game wasn't "finished". That certainly wasn't fair to the players, but now that the game is within sight of reaching that destination I realize how important it will be moving forward and promise to deliver more timely updates on all game progress, or lack thereof. Thanks to all of you who have reached out to ask about the status of the game and the well being of the staff. Your support has helped bring me out of the funk I was in and I now find myself approaching the game with the same passion I had in the years prior to the shit storm that is 2020.
Time to get back to work!