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Creators Hour 30/12/2009

<Appocomaster> Good evening, ladies and gentlemen
<Appocomaster> as always, please /msg CH_Bot with any questions you may have that you would like Ace and I to answer
<Appocomaster> http://pirate.planetarion.com/showt...ad.php?t=198416
<Appocomaster> please vote on our round 35 round name thread!
<Appocomaster> if you haven't seen it, the announcement on the current happenings of Planetarion (specifically Round 35) is here: http://www.planetarion.com/news/new...und-3435-update
<Appocomaster> and, for the record, it was a roast chicken dinner with the family, which I couldn't really miss, and which I was promised would be about 40 minutes ago :(
<Appocomaster> some cooks have no idea what they're talking about!
<Appocomaster> so, to summarise
<Appocomaster> we have Round 35 beta testing @ http://beta.planetarion.com
<Appocomaster> it will shortly be reset
<Appocomaster> to activate the latest ship stats changes
<Appocomaster> #beta for more betaness!
<Appocomaster> we also have round 33 re-running with 30 second ticks and private galaxies at http://speedgame.planetarion.com
<Appocomaster> ok
<Appocomaster> currently we have 10 questions
<Appocomaster> so we shall commence :)
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 1): <Williams> After shuffle that wil stil happen tick? Wil there be 1 or 2 Bp's in 1 gal and what wil be the gallimit this round or depends on how many people wil be playing?
<Appocomaster> Shuffle will happen at tick 12, as last round
<Appocomaster> when planets sign up, they will have 48 ticks worth of resources, research points and construction units to allocate
<Appocomaster> this means that shuffle will happen on the Saturday morning
<Appocomaster> (fun!)
<Appocomaster> and you get all weekend to sort things out
<Appocomaster> when you upgrade, you will now get double the previous one off upgrade bonuses, and increased "tick bonus" rate
<Appocomaster> shuffle will place 1x 2 or 3 man buddy pack
<Appocomaster> in each galaxy
<Appocomaster> there will only be 1 buddy pack per galaxy
<Appocomaster> there will not be a galaxy limit; it will depend on the number of players
<Appocomaster> but I'm hopeful for around 7-8 players per galaxy
<Appocomaster> late joiners will still be at tick 336
<Appocomaster> and galaxies who had a buddy pack of 3 will get 1 late joiner, those who had a buddy pack of 2 will have 2 late joiners
<Appocomaster> I hope that makes it clear!
<Appocomaster> please let me know if there are any other questions about this
<Appocomaster> :D
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 2): <Hiall> Can you clarify salvage.. cuss I forgot which one I read which was true and which one was *guessing* change :P
<Appocomaster> Yes, sorry. Originally i'd planned to reduce salvage (for ziks and for top planets in 2 separate methods)
<Appocomaster> but Ziks have instead suffered from a reduced efficiency rate
<Appocomaster> and the top planet salvage reduction would only have really hit the top 5-10 planets, and after discussion, was deemed a pretty knee-jerk (and short-sighted) solution to salvage donations
<Appocomaster> I don't know if you want to comment on this issue, Ace?
<Ace> nope
<Appocomaster> ok :)
<Appocomaster> so, there are not any salvage changes as such
<Appocomaster> the nearest we came is a drop in zik efficiency
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 3): <TDK-lunch> How do you plan to get more people interested/involved in the game?
<Appocomaster> this is something to be discussed with Pete
<Appocomaster> He co-owns Planetarion, and effectively is the manager that we report to
<Appocomaster> he owns 2 advertising sites, which I believe we have advertising on (or will get advertising on)
<Appocomaster> otherwise, there's a definite area for innovation
<Appocomaster> as I have in the past, if anyone has ideas and wish to try and implement them, then please come forward and talk to me :)
<Appocomaster> but really, you have to be willing to help, as the pa team does not have much spare bandwidth at the moment (unfortunately)
<Appocomaster> it's also been mentioned that we might try and add in some more support / information / etc
<Appocomaster> but that's not definite in terms of scope or ETC
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 4): <Hiall> This infamous new god that is the new spinner.. I'm curious if he will be clarifying at any point the new fb pa? (Its like been a year)
<Appocomaster> I assume you mean Pete :-)
<Ace> nope he means pete's coder
<Appocomaster> http://pirate.planetarion.com/showp...amp;postcount=6
<Appocomaster> well, either :p
<Appocomaster> this is what Pete published earlier this month on the PA forums
<Appocomaster> as the 1st of January is fast approaching, we should soon have an update on if Pete is keeping the programmer and if/when he starts work on facebook
<Appocomaster> he's currently deciding on how to link the games and so on
<Appocomaster> but we'll see
<Appocomaster> hopefully we'll have an update in the next week or two, once things pick up after Christmas
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 5): <TDK-lunch> And how does single ship stats help new players get involved in game as it is now more reliant on having an ally that is cooperative and working together and harder for a new player to build correct defense?
<Appocomaster> oh good point
<Appocomaster> sorry Pea
<Appocomaster> :p
<Appocomaster> sorry
<Appocomaster> forgot that o.O
<Appocomaster> ok
<Appocomaster> Single target ship stats helps to attack
<Appocomaster> it does make defence more difficult
<Appocomaster> so
<Appocomaster> it makes things more attacking for this round
<Appocomaster> and less defensive
<Appocomaster> it does mean that galaxies and alliances will be even more imporant for defence
<Appocomaster> and that's where the difference will be
<Appocomaster> most recent changes have been helpful for new players
<Appocomaster> over the last years
<Appocomaster> this is a trial
<Appocomaster> to see how it works and what the reaction is
<Appocomaster> single targetting does make things more 'simple' in terms of calculating
<Appocomaster> there's no t1 t2 t3 to worry about
<Appocomaster> and it makes it easier to find targets
<Appocomaster> so there are some advantages
<Appocomaster> I think that it'll be a good half way through the round before we can say if that's definitely hurt or helped gameplay though
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 6): <TDK-lunch> Which means that once again we see old players favored in the game, making it even harder to break in as a new player
<Appocomaster> ah
<Appocomaster> that was part of Q5
<Appocomaster> I think that it might but I don't think it's as clearcut as you're making out
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 7): <kaiba> 1. Why are the new ship names so lame??
<Appocomaster> I outsourced the name-making
<Appocomaster> I have final say, so I may tweak some of them
<Appocomaster> ;)
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 8): <Punther> My question: Is it possible to make in the Planetarion calc an additional window where one can saven coords over respective fleet? (In order to keep with several fleet the overview)
<Appocomaster> I think that this is mentioned in another thread too (or similar), on the suggestions forum.
<Appocomaster> I can't find it at the moment
<Appocomaster> the battle calc often gets tweaked and updated round on round
<Appocomaster> http://pirate.planetarion.com/showt...ad.php?t=198339
<Appocomaster> there we go
<Appocomaster> :)
<Appocomaster> so yes
<Appocomaster> I think we'll try and do it
<Appocomaster> it's another change to help new/ mid range players
<Appocomaster> in addition to the alliance attack page, alliance scanning, etc
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 9): <eksero> Now that bp's are down to 3, wouldnt it be better to change the required votes on exiles to 2? If you end up with inactyives only you dont have enough ministers to exile them and are stuck with them
<Appocomaster> I still think galaxies will be around 10, and increase as the game goes on
<Appocomaster> well, they'll start around 7-8
<Appocomaster> and probably end up around 11-12
<Appocomaster> we might do some manual disbands if galaxies are too inactive
<Appocomaster> but I think that 3 is still a fair vote
<Appocomaster> buddy packs just might need more eloquence
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 10): <m0|afk> are stats final ?
<Appocomaster> ish
<Appocomaster> I think the majority of changes are done
<Appocomaster> but I'm going to go over them this weekend
<Appocomaster> at the latest
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 11): <Light> 7 week round?
<Appocomaster> yes, 7 week round :)
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 12): <Shimoda> Why reduce BP to 3 what was the reasoning behind this?
<Appocomaster> Actually, part of this was my fault :
<Appocomaster> :(
<Appocomaster> well, maybe
<Appocomaster> A commonly-quoted reason will be to stop fortress galaxies
<Appocomaster> but it was really more to help create more galaxies, and more targets, and allow for fewer alliances per galaxy
<Appocomaster> which would allow for more political manoevering
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 13): <ReligFree> So, you guys made a large fuss about setting up a new portal, seems you got it updated, but you have failed to put any EORC etc up for about 6 months? This is pretty much the first page people see when they hear about this great game Planetarion, surely it should be a focus of your attention to improve that? I know you're busy etc, but yeah, can you fix it please.
<Appocomaster> The portal was partially updated (though not the passport that shall not be named)
<Appocomaster> admittedly it's missing a few things
<Appocomaster> I apologise; I'll add them in
<Appocomaster> The portal does probably need more work on it!
<Appocomaster> again, if anyone wants to volunteer to look at it with ideas, I'll support them in it
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 14): <ReligFree> can you give me some sort of estimation of galaxy sizes for next round? Obviously you've done the 3 bp to help reduce fortresses, but also it should have the effect of creating more galaxies?
<Appocomaster> as I said before, it will be less than this round
<Appocomaster> and yes, more galaxies
<Appocomaster> hopefully we'll end at around 10-11
<Appocomaster> hopefully only a drop of around 2-3 planets
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 15): <DerEins> will xan have a 3rd roid fleet again (BS)
<Appocomaster> er
<Appocomaster> maybe eventually
<Appocomaster> but changing to single targetting for a round, it's better to stick with 2 fleets
<Appocomaster> xan are meant to be small with predominatly small ships
<Appocomaster> so a bs pod is out of place
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 16):
<Appocomaster> oh
<Appocomaster> sec
<Appocomaster> .win 2
<Appocomaster> gah
<Appocomaster> .repeat
<CH_Bot> (Q 16): <m0|afk> will there be bot planets again ? and if so at which tick will they be introduced ?
<Appocomaster> yes, there will be :-)
<Appocomaster> they'll be introduced before the late starters
<Appocomaster> this round they were around tick 200
<Appocomaster> I think that'll be the same for round 35
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 17): <AndroX> For those that already spend money on Credits and that dont agree to these changes for upcomming round(s). Is there a way to either save the credits or get them refunded? As they were spent on a different type of game.
<Appocomaster> credits will be saved (you can take it up with Pete but general policy is there are no refunds)
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 18): <Cinnamon> will the number of ministers be reduced?
<Appocomaster> there are no plans to reduce the ministers, no
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 19): <Cinnamon> can exile vote be changed to 2 or 3? for galaxies
<Appocomaster> I assume you mean 2 from 3 (unless you mean GC + 1-2 people?)
<Appocomaster> I'll have a look, but I'm not sure if it's really necessary
<Appocomaster> :)
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 20): <zawze> In a recent forum post, you said there's no-one to do graphics and you don't have the money to hire someone to do it - what happened to MrLobster's offers?
<Appocomaster> MrLobster has made some skins of a high quality. However, he's never submitted them to us in a usable format, and Cin spends much of his available time developing and testing, and so has little time to change MrLobster's skins to the templates
<Appocomaster> available at http://www.planetarion.com/files/cin/template.rar
<Appocomaster> any skin submitted in the given format can be added in-game
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 21): <m0|afk> will we ever see a round with private gals ?
<Appocomaster> Possibly. I can't rule it out, though I personally do favour the buddy pack view
<Appocomaster> I cannot imagine how anyone other than new players would go for anything other than a private galaxy, even one twice the size of a public galaxy. This would just reinforce the status quo and allow the top players to run away even more than currently, as far as I can see.
<Appocomaster> until someone can convince me otherwise, then I'm not sure how private galaxies would work
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 22): Cinnamon> i dont want to lose my BP because of inactives
<Appocomaster> fair enough. I'll look at it :-)
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 23): <Cinnamon> Why do you let the forum troll squad dictate your decisions for the future rounds?
<Appocomaster> I don't believe we do
<Appocomaster> I thought that the forum troll squad was pro private galaxies, fortress galaxies and reinforcing the status quo
<Appocomaster> so, by reducing these tactics, we're now accused of following them too
<Appocomaster> I'm sure that if you look hard enough, you will find most forum posters - including myself - covering lots of topics and often contradicting over the course of time
<Appocomaster> If we ask for ideas on the forums and only they post, it's very hard to make any changes that don't involve topics that they've covered
<Appocomaster> so I'm not sure what else to say or suggest
<Appocomaster> if you want to e-mail me / cin ideas, feel free to
<Appocomaster> appocomaster@planetarion.com and cin@planetarion.com
<Appocomaster> but the forum often weeds out obvious flaws
<Appocomaster> as I've found
<Appocomaster> :p
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 24): <Hiall> @Appocomaster ⢠any skin submitted in the given format can be added in-game <-- what is the given format? css file with appropriate images?
<Appocomaster> http://www.planetarion.com/files/cin/template.rar
<Appocomaster> :)
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 25): <Shimoda> Do you not think that with PA's pursuit of new players (and the constant changes) that there is a risk that you are now risking driving away the long standing PA players.
<Appocomaster> I think that we have to make changes
<Appocomaster> not all the changes are 'new player friendly'
<Appocomaster> a lot of them involve making the game more self-sufficient
<Appocomaster> e.g. semi-decent alliance tools
<Appocomaster> rather than relying on 3rd party tools
<Appocomaster> ironically, I think that we need to make different sorts of changes (and more of them) to be attractive to new players
<Appocomaster> I'm sure we've all played games with some sort of advisors
<Appocomaster> that would be handy and work well with the quest system
<Appocomaster> also, a way of encouraging planets to look after new planets
<Appocomaster> and, tbh, getting more advertising and more planets in generally :p
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 26): <Kila> The private galaxy model where you can either be part of a priv. gal or alliance that has been suggested numerous times (originally by Rob?) addresses the "nobody except newbies will go random" problem
<Appocomaster> it does cripple alliances, which are the main reason many players play
<Appocomaster> so we'd have to make private galaxies more an exception or a rule
<Appocomaster> if all the dcs / bcs / actives decide to make galaxies and play with themselves
<Appocomaster> where does that leave the alliances ripped of their heart?
<Appocomaster> this aside, it is the most workable method of integrating private galaxies with the current system, I agree
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 27): <Hiall> I understand alot of the planning for changes took place in #alliances which is all well and good but I don't believe it holds a general view of all of planetarion players. Would it not be possible to have a more open discussion with all players and then have apossibly a poll on for/against of new ideas?
<Appocomaster> This is not the most straight forward of discussions
<Appocomaster> Cin and I are not constantly around
<Appocomaster> and we don't always have time to read through lengthy threads
<Appocomaster> also, polls aren't always right
<Appocomaster> in round 14, my stats were slated for having steal for all races
<Appocomaster> (I think it was round 14? or round 15? something like that)
<Appocomaster> anyway, they were a lot more popular by the end of the round
<Appocomaster> sometimes we do get changes right ... and sometimes not everyone is right, though admittedly it involves risk of driving people away because they don't want to play because of the change
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 28): <zawze> are there any plans to provide an API that alliance techs can use to extract information to enhance our own tools? say notification part for example
<Appocomaster> oops
<Appocomaster> .back
<Appocomaster> I forgot i hadn't finished
<Appocomaster> I think that some more open discussion in more areas is probably good
<Appocomaster> though for some things, #alliances is suitable
<Appocomaster> I think it'd be unfair to deny them any sounding board
<Appocomaster> we generally take topics from the suggestions forum anyway, so if you post good things on there and we look through them, that's good
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 29): <Shimoda> Ever thought of having a couple of rounds of PA with NO changes to allow newbies to get used to the game, surely all the changes drives people away (and upsets the older players)?
<Appocomaster> oosp
<Appocomaster> @28: no plan at the moment, planet notifications are meant to be planet only
<Appocomaster> @29: no, as more old players are probably unhappy with no change than are kept happy
<Appocomaster> one newbie I met learnt most of the game in the first 2 weeks, and by the end of the round was bored and left
<Appocomaster> so ...
<Appocomaster> that example always sticks in my mind!
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 30):
<Appocomaster> .repeat
<CH_Bot> (Q 30): vex`> i belive polls are more acurate than a few people posting on forums that only a few ppl read
<Appocomaster> yes
<Appocomaster> and to be honest, if I can get a survey together, you might well see one, as we get interesting responses
<Appocomaster> and sometimes it's useful
<Appocomaster> though the responses can be repetative
<Appocomaster> but the majority of the time, negative things are identified, rather than positive solutions that we can go ahead and code
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 31): <paisley> what made the pa team decide to hardcode out of ally def for planets that are in an alliance and not for all planets
<Appocomaster> alliances are ranked on their score. this will remove any issues over multi hunting and make it far far more indicative of an alliance's strength
<Appocomaster> it does leave a nice grey area over allianceless planets struggling (with alliance support) to tag at the end
<Appocomaster> whether anyone will be able to do that, I don't know
<Appocomaster> it does make it a lot easier to multihunt - the issue is no longer there
<Appocomaster> some people in the past have mentioned it coudl be done on the forums, so after a round we can see how well it went down
<Appocomaster> please please please say around midround if you think it was better or worse than previous rounds!
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 32): <AndroX> Why isn't PAteam increased memberbase? All I read in this CH is that you are outmanned on many area's. Like eg: Cin does most by himself. Etcetc. And where does Pete fit/come in this. Its his game right?
<Appocomaster> We got Ace in!
<Appocomaster> I think that we could do with 1-2 more people
<Appocomaster> but the pa team isn't an attractive position
<Appocomaster> I've never concealed the fact that, if someone wants to volunteer and show themselves capable of performing and helping, and is willing to sign the NDA, I'd love to see them abroad
<Appocomaster> er
<Appocomaster> *aboard
<Appocomaster> though I'm not ruling out visits ;p
<Appocomaster> but I'm not sure we've got many volunteers
<Appocomaster> it's not an easy thing to do :(
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 33): <kaiba> why did u not reduce alliance sizes??
<Appocomaster> it was tempting
<Appocomaster> but we left it a bit late
<Appocomaster> we will try and be more organised, as there won't be Christmas interfering, and I should have more free time in February
<Appocomaster> so !
<Appocomaster> .nqp
<CH_Bot> (Q 34): <vex`> [16:24] <@Appocomaster> @29: no, as more old players are probably unhappy with no change than are kept happy <--- we need to keep it balanced not just the elite happy! :) i sugest that you dont base yourself on one n00b quitting cause he got borred.
<Appocomaster> yeah, I guess so.
<Appocomaster> ideas are welcome, put them on the suggestions forum and keep them coming!
<Appocomaster> oh, sorry
<Appocomaster> forgot something
<Appocomaster> .question 32
<Appocomaster> hm
<Appocomaster> 21:26:08 <+CH_Bot> (Q 32): <AndroX> Why isn't PAteam increased memberbase? All I read in this CH is that you are outmanned on many area's. Like eg: Cin does most by himself. Etcetc. And where does Pete fit/come in this. Its his game right?
<Appocomaster> It is Pete's game
<Appocomaster> he's currently not proactively working with us on the game
<Appocomaster> as he has several concerns
<Appocomaster> and there's one of him
<Appocomaster> but it is (basically) his game
<Appocomaster> though he co-owns it with Fubra, who provide our hosting
<Appocomaster> we hope to discuss things with him further in the future
<Appocomaster> :)
<Appocomaster> anyway
<Appocomaster> that's it
<Appocomaster> I overran, and we started late
<Appocomaster> thanks for the questions
<Appocomaster> I will post the log, I promise!
<Appocomaster> and the others
<Appocomaster> cheers guys
<Appocomaster> don't forget to vote @ http://pirate.planetarion.com/showt...ad.php?t=198416