This should hopefully be the last pre-beta post of information, as we’re expecting to be able to test out the CharGen very soon. In preparation for this, we have created characters for all those who have applied for the beta and have allowed them to go through the brief, initial setup. This means that if any more people were to apply for the beta now (yes, we’re still taking apps!), they could get a character to login to as soon as have processed their applications. Processing apps will be taking a backseat to working on the code at the moment, but its still pretty likely that we can manage to look over an app in a couple of days.
If anyone is interested, download the application and send it on to us.
Today’s the official end of the application period. If you have sent in an application, but have not heard back from us at all, then your application has not reached us and you should log on to the MUSH as soon as possible to get in touch with us.
For those of you who have applied for a tier III or tier II character, we will get the final decision on your applications sent out within a day or two. Following that (no exact date set for this yet) everyone approved will receive login information.
If you haven’t yet applied but would like to do so, you still have until the end of today. Additionally, since we haven’t actually filled up all the beta slots yet, it will be possible to submit applications even after the deadline. However, such applications will have a lower priority as we have to concentrate on getting those already approved setup on the game. It will also be virtually impossible to get approved for a tier III or tier II character, as the quota of such will have been more than filled by those selected from the applications submitted before the deadline.
After processing the applications we have received from the players who had been guaranteed a beta slot and those that we so far have received from players who had been placed on the backup list, we have determined that there will be enough room in the beta for us to open up applications more widely.
The deadline for submitting an application is September 20th, and applications will be dealt with on a first come, first serve basis. The limit is 60 characters, ideally 30 male and 30 female, though we will allow a deviation of +/- 10 either way.
Those characters already spoken for are listed here: http://asoiaf.westeros.org/index.php?showtopic=11975
As some of you may have noticed, we have been absent from the MUSH of late. The reason is that we’ve been in the US since the 23rd of August, to attend the WorldCon and pay a visit to Elio’s family in Las Vegas. We had expected to have some time free to respond to applications, but we have been too busy to manage this. Rest assured, however, that we will tackle them as soon as we can. We’ll be back home on Sunday the 3rd of September, and should be awake enough to process the most on them on Monday.
As a result of this, we will extend the deadline for submitting your beta applications to September 3rd.
We’ve been forgetting about posting progress reports of late, but we’ll try to do better. Of course, we may not need that many more. We expect the final piece of code for the skill setup to be done today, and that concludes the really difficult parts of the CharGen code. We still need to make some additions, do some bug hunting and polishing, but the bulk of the code is now in place and working more or less as it should. In short, we’ve taken a big step towards the beta.
We are hoping to complete the Assets & Flaws stage of the CharGen quite soon, after which we will move on to dealing with the Stats and the Skills. We have also made a lot of progress with the mechanics, which should make the actual coding that remains more straight-forward. For those who are curious about what the CharGen will be like, we have posted quite a bit of information about it on the forums. We have also answered quite a few questions there of late, and some interesting discussions have gotten started.
A first, almost-complete version of the INFO files has been compiled and uploaded to the game. These function like the NEWS files on other games, and can be accessed by typing ‘INFO’ (the command is case-insensitive). In contrast to how many other games handle this, our files are split over three types of files: INFO (policies, general game information, etc), THEME (thematic information) and SYSTEM (information relating to major coded systems). Typing ‘INDEX’ will provide a list of the various types of files available.
The INFO files (as well as the THEME and SYSTEM files, once these have been completed) will also be added to the website in the near future, but for the time being we invite interested players to look them over on the game itself, and we would appreciate comments on things people feel might need to be clarified or otherwise adjusted.
At the moment, we have 39 players signed up who want to play male characters, 8 who want to play female characters and a few who haven’t decided on a character. We have decided that we will only allow a total of 40 players to sign up for male characters, leaving only 1 open slots. For female characters, we will allow a total of 20, leaving 12 open slots. However, since we are pretty certain some of the people who signed up may not be able to actually take part in the beta once it starts, we will allow people to sign up even after these slots have been filled. The difference will be that they will be put onto a reserve list, rather than guaranteed a slot.
This listing has once again been overhauled, as we have changed the storage and display of both the heraldry and the family tree information. You can now find the list of houses with family trees in the Houses section. As before, you can use the family trees to browse for interesting characters, and then log on to the MUSH to look up those characters, using +CDB <name>.
The new forum for the MUSH has been added to the main A Song of Ice and Fire forum. Until we announce the beta opening, we will make available only a single forum, but later on we will likely add subforums and we may possibly promote the MUSH forum to a parent forum, should it prove to be used very heavily.
Since we now have an excellent new host (the bod.westeros.org:3000 should now be working, btw), as well as some other good news to report, we felt it was time for one of these, albeit a brief one. The CharGen is not yet finished, but what we do have now is a brand new integrated mail and bulletin board system. Based off Elendor’s excellent system, Talvo’s mushmail uses mySQL to store the data, and offers a number of interesting features. We’ll now be working on integrating it with some of our existing systems, such as the code for tracking projects and player inquiries and the character request code, and it will allow us to finish up various outstanding pieces of code.
We’re happy to be able to report that we have a new host for Blood of Dragons. We don’t yet have the precise address that we’ll be using, but the game will now be hosted on the same server as the website, allowing us to proceed with plans such as making the character database accessible through a web-interface.
As soon as the game is up at the new address, we’ll post to announce this.
Unfortunately, we have some very bad news. Our current host, mux.net, will be closing down in two months, leaving Blood of Dragons without a home. Those who have logged on recently will know that the timing is about as bad as it could be, as we have recently been preparing to finally open for beta play sometime relatively soon after the US release of A Feast for Crows.