TomB’s new coffee girl!

From the second floor of the CCP HQ, I report to you from my desk for the very first time. As the title of this blog states quite clearly, I am TomB’s new coffee girl. Officially my job is about game design, but I believe TomB would disagree on that. Personally I prefer tea.

However, I think formal introductions are in order. I am Fear, and I am indeed the new addition to the Game Design team for Eve. Some of you might know me through another venue at CCP, as I worked as a GM for quite a bit until the new year, when I joined TomB’s team. Now, Tuxford is no longer the new guy, and thus I’m pestered quite extensively with requests for coffee or “get into the office” kinda things. But it is quite all right, I think they needed some new meat into the grinder. Plus, I think Tuxford had quite a few problems to fix and he will be happy that he can dump everything on me.

Now that Revelations has been released on Tranquility, the Content department is breathing a sigh of relief as the patches we have deployed after November 25th have fixed numerous things that we were not happy with. The server has been more stable (except Jita of course) and we are taking the ocassional break for a relaxing game of Wii golf. Well that’s not all we do. We are always fixing things. We have another patch coming up and there is a big list of fixes and optimizations in the works.

If I would sit here and chat on and on about every single thing we are doing, we would be here until patch day at least. So I am going to sum it up to what I have been doing since I joined, and mainly how my move was and how my work day has changed.

Being a GM is not an easy task, but it is enjoyable as you are always in contact with the game and you, the players. Thus you are always the first contact of things going wrong. One of my responsibilities will be to keep a close relationship with the GM's (they will bring me tea) and hopefully this will result in fewer issues, and swift solutions to the problems at hand.

But my daily responsibilities have changed, as working in the petition system and the authoring system are not the same. Same interface maybe, but still a whole other set of pages to learn on. Not only that, but learning the deep workings at the core of the game. That is probably going to be one of the most challenging parts of my job.

Since I joined the team, I was given the task of fixing salvaging. Salvaging as a feature was not broken as such, but there are aspects of it that needed some attention and tuning. One, which you are undoubtedly aware of, is that certain NPCs were not dropping salvage. No matter how much you tried, you always got the nice message “Your salvaging attempt has been successful, however there was nothing to salvage”. Having experienced this myself I do understand this frustration.

This is something that needed to be fixed, but it's not an easy task. There were about 500 entities not dropping salvage, but in order to make them drop, they needed to be categorized according to size, race and so forth.

Amongst other things that have been changed are player ships. They will now drop more salvage than they have been, and in more variety based on their faction. Damaged Artificial Neural Networks were also added to some NPCs as they were only being dropped in minimum amount in player ships.

The drops from NPC factions were also tweaked a bit, moved around, added to some, frequency increased and/or decreased and so forth, so balance would be held between the factions.

The work on this has been finished, and only awaits testing by the QA department.

I am however also looking ahead, and what we will be doing with Kali 2, besides factional warfare. That is all, of course, still on the hush hush!

But I shan’t be bothering you with my intro any longer. I have some rats to kill... err... I mean bugs... did I say that out loud? wink

Fear