Postcards from a bloody cold country

This is not going to be a "here are your new features, go forth and pontificate" blog, so if you're just after hard details, you may be disappointed, sorry. Instead, I'm going to take the opportunity to just talk about some things that may or may not be interesting to some of you.

The first and most important thing I wanted to talk about is the weather (can you tell that I'm British?). We had several inches of snow on Sunday, IN APRIL!?! Clearly this is ridiculous – I'm thinking about starting an online petition, but I'm not sure who to send it to. This kind of thing shouldn't be allowed though, and I feel it's time someone made a stand for sensible weather, particularly with the First Day of Summer (hah!) coming up next week or so.

Moving away from the weather a bit, this week I have been mostly working on (CENSORED), which we're not talking about quite yet – expect to hear more in the next couple of weeks though. I can however talk about some of the stuff I've been up to, in a non-specific way.

For example, this morning we were running another small playtest of some of the new systems with the help of the GMs. This is turning out to be very productive – we've found some things that need tweaking, and there were explosions, so everyone's happy. Last week I spent a fair amount of time getting to grips with the procedures needed for adding new stations and stuff, which it turns out involves an awful lot of staring-at-the-map and jumping-around-looking-at-stuff. It's less fun than you'd think, to be honest.

What else? I've been working with our Mercury volunteers on and off, reading over news submissions and talking in IRC and generally making sure that everything is heading in the right direction for (CENSORED). Oh, and translating for Ginger when he's having one of his 'moments'.

Another neat thing I found this week – we have an automatic name generator built into our authoring tools. Not sure who's responsible for it, but it's handy – you just pick a faction and it'll throw out fifty character or system/constellation names. Occasionally tools like this just pop out of the woodwork; the rest of the time huge Excel files do the job well enough, particularly when they're nice and colorful…

That's it for now, anyway!