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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 5:02 am 

Joined: Wed May 17, 2006 10:12 pm
Posts: 465
Location: Mead, Wa
Hi folks,

I've just finished the question list, and I've put everything new (i.e. not answered live at the meeting and graciously included by MustardJeep) in italics, if all went well.

Q:Is shout working?

A:(04/10 16:07:19) Gregbert: oi. Good point. I don't think shout is fixed on Rehearsal...
(04/10 16:07:37) D'Lanor: testing /shout
(04/10 16:07:53) Morgon: yes, heard you, DL
(04/10 16:07:57) D'Lanor: fixed then
(04/10 16:07:59) MustardJeep: guess that means it's working

(04/10 16:10:09) Dadguy
Q:In the Release 4 notes, you mentioned the appearances of the Bahro at the Ferry Term, Great Stairs and Library. I looked but didn't see them. Are they working? Should we be seeing them?

A:(04/10 16:11:06) Gregbert: This is something we sort of neglected for this testing cycle. We have indeed tested them, and they are working. We'll try to set up some cameo appearances...

Q:what's the status on the "door bug" (museum and library)?

A: This is something that we'll keep working on untl it's fixed. For now, we're going to keep the door off of the museum and rely on the relative stability of the fix in place for the Library doors (meaning it should be much harder - although still possible - to get it stuck closed). Also, the fix in place on Rehearsal and Live is not the latest. We'll see what happens in Live 5.

Q:What's the estimated release date of Rehearsal 5?

A: Dates are tricky because that all depends on when we get the build ready. If we go by the two week cycle, that puts us somewhere in the neighborhood of the week of the 23rd.

Q:What ages are planed for the next release? The light-o-meter and pellet symbol points to Er'cana. Are we going to see the TPOS ages Ahnonay, Er'cana and Myst Library?

A: Depending on how things go in the next week or so, in addition to the Live 5 content we may just have a bit more for you to test than will actually appear in Live 5. But yes, let's just say that you should definitely be honing your TPOTS skills soon.

Q:Was the white board background in the interview with Rand a mistake or deliberately? The pens were placed in front of some age names.

A: Let's just call what was on the white board one branch on the tree of possibility. We do not bow to the almighty white board each morning when we arrive to work, and we have many white boards.

Q:Is Marrim the name of your internal testing instance?

A: Yes. Marrim is the name of our QC server. It's where the the 'next' build is tested in the week(s) before it arrives on Rehearsal.

Q:The Live 4 was a very well working and smooth upgrade. It contained only a few bugs. Are you satisfied with the latest release? Does the team handle the code better or what's the reason for the smooth release?

A: We are very pleased with Live 4. If we're being realistic, we'll realize that there will be some builds that really come together nicely, and there will be some builds that we will have to drag, kicking and screaming, to a state of Live readiness. Ultimately, there is a level of quality that has to be met before any build gets to Live. If the build goes smoothly, it takes less hair pulling to get it there. If it doesn't, we roll up our sleeves and do battle with it until it's ready. That's really about as far as we should read into it or we'll all go nuts.

Q:Why did you invite new people? Was the overall testing rate dropping down?

A: Concurrency was a bit low, so we bumped the number a bit to increase that number.

(04/10 16:19:12) MustardJeep
Q:If the next round is as smooth as this one, do you want comments on puzzle difficulty, confusing things, ect?

A:(04/10 16:19:2 Gregbert: We always want that.

(04/10 16:11:26) ShareAges A.K.A. ToriaUru
Q:For those of us who may not understand, could you make it clear about if you still want us to log onto Reearsal after the content is pushed to Live? Does it help you to continue getting bug reports from Reheasal, as opposed to Live??

A:(04/10 16:12:55) Gregbert: It always helps, but once the build is on Live, the testing should be done on Live. Always keep an eye on the forums, too for late breaking testing objectives.

Q:What exactly is the process when making an age? What are the steps it goes through from first imagining to release in Live?

A: Everything you could ever want to know about this can be found here:

Q:Any hints at what's in Live 5?

A: Something completely new is on the horizon - and something to catch you off guard, as well. You'll be very busy in Live 5.

Q:How many people at Cyan are on the Rehearsal team?

A: I'm not sure what you mean by 'Rehearsal team', but there are very few people at Cyan not directly involved with procuction.

Q:Is it a problem when we create a new avi to test the old stuff as well as the new and then delete that avi with the next build? Especially if we have found bugs with that avi and submitted tickets?

A: It is ok to delete an avatar if you still have open tickets found with that avatar, but the exception to this is if you have a bug that you only see with that avatar and no others. You should always have existing avatars to test with. If you're only testing with an avatar that was just created in the current build, you're missing out on much of the testing that needs to be done. By the same token, if you're only testing with existing avatars, you miss out on the testing that represents a new player just coming to Uru. Try to balance your testing between new and existing avatars. Keep in mind, though, that there are bugs which only affect newly created avatars and there are bugs which only affect existing avatars. The only way to find both kinds of bugs is to test with both kinds of avatars.

(04/10 16:20:03) Jared
Q:Has the instancing issue in Payiferen been addressed?
(04/10 16:20:55) Jared: where the lights weren't showing as on for all explorers in the pod
(04/10 16:21:0 Jishin: That happens in Tetsonot too. /me shuts up.
A:(04/10 16:21:42) Gregbert: Chogon: We're working on that - multiplayer sync issues

Q:How are we doing on increasing the concurrency on Rehearsal? It was said we were maxing out around 40, have we been
able to do better this time?

A: I don't have the latest numbers at hand - but as I said earlier, the reason for the bump in the rehearsal population was to increase concurrency.

Q:What's up with the FTP server? Was it wiped because people were using for things other than what it was intended for?

A: No. The FTP site was migrated to a new location, and we still have access to everything that was in the old location. It was mentioned somewhere recently that if you have something that you need to reference that you can no longer get to, just mention that in your support ticket and we can get to what you need.

Q: Is the problem with the GZ Cathedral doors (opening/closing several times in a row after using them, sticking open) related to the Library/Museum door bug?

A:(04/10 16:09:43) Captain Gravy Boat: Yes.

Q:Will the 'bug' with all 'hoods sharing the same KI coordinates be fixed?

A: That's a question for Design - I can't really say what they'll decide on the matter.

Q:Will you make it so that Er'Cana and Ahnonay are required to complete the PotS journey? Because in the original game, once you found out you had to stay in that one spot for 20 or so minutes, you could bypass both ages during a replay and just stand in the spot...although with that Relto page at Ahnonay, that may be enough incentive to explore it, but I don't think Er'Cana had any pages in POTS.

A: The content in TPOTS was modified to suit the needs of a singleplayer expansion pack. This is not a singleplayer expansion pack, so the way that the content is rolled out could very well be as different from TPOTS as Live is from a singleplayer expansion pack. Even the content itself may differ from what you see there. By the way, I'm pretty sure the firemarbles page was in Ercana.

Q: Do you plan to add new areas to already-existing ages? What about ages that have a real storyline to them, such as the original Uru and I think POTS also had a story of sorts?

A: That's up to Design. I find it unlikely that new content will never get added to existing areas, though. But that's just my opinion.

Q:What's the official way to solve the Pod Age "journey"? People seemed to have solved it by trial and error. Was that expected?

A:(04/10 16:31:16) Gregbert: by using the map in conjunction with what you know of Payiferen.

Q:When retesting the game every build, is it more beneficial for debugging to begin with a new avatar (creating a new one for each build) or to use the delete tab to reset one avatar's Ages (retesting old areas with the same avatar across builds) in order to begin afresh?

A: Yes. In other words we need both, as I mentioned above.

Q:Can we expect more animals in the Pod Ages, in terms of new unseen species and/or frequency of appearance, as the plot in Live progresses?

A: That's up to design. Since Uru Live is such a dynamic place, you never know what to 'expect'.

Q:This build seemed to contain a lot fewer bugs than any of the other builds! Hooray! In these situations, is there anything we should be giving feedback on besides bugs? i.e. such and such a puzzle is too easy, too hard, we want more background on a certain thing in the form of a notebook or whatever.

A: Answered above.

Q:Nobody I've talked to in Ruru has seen a Bahro in the city. Will there be a scheduled triggering of them that some of us can catch?

A: Answered above.

Q:I know this has been brought up before, but it's a prevailing thought that's been on my mind ever since I had been in the closed beta, through Live, and now in Rehearsal. This is a little long-winded so bear with me. Through the whole time I've been playing I can't see an entry point to insert myself to become part of the story in some fashion that would affect
the outcome of any particular plot line. Instead I feel like I'm running around just solving puzzles while a pre-determined plot plays itself out and maybe one or two players or niche groups are included in it. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the game immensely either way, but with the idea of "us" being able to influence the outcome of various events I still feel left out
despite the amount of time I've put into this. Are there any plans to make it easy for players to insert themselves into the story? Or maybe even apply for roles in the game that would allow them to become truly a part of the events and feel like they're affecting things as they are occurring?

A: See RAWA's post here:

Q:Are there still plans to release a high resolution image of of the Great Zero that could be used for posters? I've been waiting for that since May. Also, Is there any chance of releasing the Pod Map in a higher resolution, suitable for printing at a large size?

A: I haven't heard of anything like that - but that doesn't mean 'no'. It just means that I haven't heard anything about it. You can always send in a request to customer support, or ask Greydragon.

Q:Are we rehearsalers counted by Gametap as players when they do their tallying? Or are they only counting people logging into Live?

A: They are only counting people logging into Live. They are aware of the rehearsal number, but hypothetically speaking if none of you ever logged into Live I imagine they would assume that the numbers from Live include the rehearsal number - so that would be bad. If testing on rehearsal consumes the majority of your Uru-time budget and you no longer log into Live, then Rehearsal probably isn't the place for you (not 'you' as in Cassie, but 'you' as in everyone - the group). In other words, if you have only enough time to be in one place or the other, we'd rather you be on Live.

Q:The pod puzzle, now that we have all the pieces, I have been going over the puzzle from a perspective of a new player, or a player that wishes to do the puzzle ON THEIR OWN, and without outside hints, and I have found a couple of problems. The first is that I feel as though Payiferen should have been the first pod released, but the reason why you went for
Negilahn is proabably STORY. The second, without a basic number number for doing the conversion from D'ni to surface time, means there are lots of discrepency problems with the accuracy of portal times, and many people work, and so may find, like myself that they cannot get to the next portal for a couple of weeks at least. I found out that our year isn't 365.25 days, but in fact its 365.2425 days, and its called a Gregorian Year, this mere simple fact which for some reason isn't common knowledge will confuse and confound some who take the puzzle personally and introduce a substantial error in the calculations. Question is will you insert this tiny piece of information into the game, say in a journal entry so that we each can make our own pod portal time predictions? I have started a topic that goes into how the pods SHOULD be solved IMHO, because I see that mostly every puzzle has 3 possible correct solutions, the long way (trying every single possible combination or sittiing around for hours), leeching from others hard work (CHEATING), and solving it the way that it was designed to be solved. Topic here

A:(04/10 16:31:16) That's up to Design.

Q:When the next rehearsal round is announced, could it be made explicit exactly when the Mac client will be ready?

A: Yep. If that differs from when rehearsal opens with Live 5, we'll let you know as soon as we know - just like last time.

Q:Windowed mode for Macs -- next round?

A:(04/10 16:23:19) Gregbert: When Live 5 comes out, hopefully we'll have something to report in the release notes

(04/10 16:23:26) Hu K'hanDhat
Q:Should we re-open tickets on bugs each new build when we see an already reported one is not yet fixed?

A:(04/10 16:24:36) Gregbert: Yes. Feel free to reopen the ticket and add feedback tfrom the current build. But only do this if you know that it's exactly the same bug...

Q:Could the logins to rehearsal be configured to allow testers to be logged in at two or more computers at the same time so that we can test multi-player bugs more effectively?

A: You would need two accounts for that, and I don't think there are any plans to supply multiple accounts to rehearsal testers. Organizing such testing can be done quite effectively on the forums.

(04/10 16:35:22) Dadguy
Q:The "special" testing for the KI mail and Invites; did you get enough responses in the forum? (I didn't feel like we had all that many that responded). Does this method (announce the test then post the results) seem to be working as you would like (enough responses?)?

A:(04/10 16:36:04) Gregbert: yes, we did get enough responses, and Cyan had good representation in the test itself, so we were aware of the results.
(04/10 16:36:33) Gregbert: so it's more about the results of the test than the responses in the forum. Thanks for asking.

(04/10 16:36:41) uralv3
Q:when is live 5 coming ? what things to look for? and how many ages?

A:(04/10 16:37:20) Gregbert: soon - new stuff - and one or more...

(04/10 16:31:26) Jeffrey Lewis
Q:When starting a new avatar, would you prefer we test new stuff with it first, or old?

A:(04/10 16:32:23) Gregbert: We would prefer that you test the new content first, log as many tickets as you can, and then move on to Legacy testing when you run out of bugs. With each iteration.

(04/10 16:37:3 Natika
Q:Will we have a way to change chat color in the future? It is sometimes very difficult to see.

A:(04/10 16:38:27) Gregbert: We do have that in as a feature request. As to when/if, it's not in the immediate future

Robert The Rebuilder
Q:What are the technical issues that prevent the Maintainer Wall from being ready? IIRC, these issues were already solved by the fan community on their UU shards, and these patches had been applied to D'mala.

A: D'mala is a different animal entirely. Just because something was fixed there doesn't mean that fix will work in Live. The biggest technical issue currently preventing the wall from being ready is where it appears on the schedule - which is a very dynamic thing. It's also why the hints for the next build can be a long time coming sometimes. The thing I most want to avoid in that regard is to float a hint about something and then have that content get pushed further back in the schedule the next day. But back to the wall: The reason it is not yet on Live is because of where it is in the schedule. Our focus is always on the content that is coming next in the schedule. When the wall is coming next, we'll focus on the wall.

Q:Is there some "point of no return" when an issue discovered during rehearsal testing cannot be fixed in time for the subsequent release to Live? I ask this because I sometimes cannot get to testing the latest Rehearsal release until several days afterwards, and I wonder whether the bugs I submit are too late to do any good for the next Live release.

A: There is certainly a point of no return, but that point depends on the bug. If it's an easy low risk fix, it could go in at the last minute if it's important enough. Even if the fix doesn't get into the current build, though, it's still good to have the bug submitted so that we can get the fix in for the next build.

Q:In general, are people supplying enough information in their tickets for the developers to identify the issue? Is there anything we should be doing differently when reporting an issue?

A:(04/10 16:25:11) Gregbert: Yes and no. Depends on the ticket but...
(04/10 16:25:40) Gregbert: always remember that with intermittent bugs, we'd like as many repro attempts as possible, and ...
(04/10 16:26:1 Gregbert: when reporting bugs in general, always remember 'where', 'what', and 'expected result'
(04/10 16:26:42) Gregbert: where should be age, where in the age, and then where exactly the bug is
(04/10 16:26:5 Gregbert: 'what' should be just a description of the bug itself
(04/10 16:27:10) Gregbert: expected result is... well, just that

Q:How close is Cyan to eliminating the link-in lag issue?

A: We're continuing to work on the issue. We want it fixed as much as you do.

Q:Can the per-explorer memory footprint be reduced any further? If I'm in an age with more than 20 people, Uru passes the 1 GB mark.

A:(04/10 16:35:11) Gregbert: Chogon: we're working on loading the avatars much faster - which won't really reduce the footprint, but may improve lag

Q:Can you comment on the status of latency related bugs like falling through the gears and spires in Gahreensen, Fissure Failure, and falling into the basement stepping off the elevator in Teledahn?

A: Not much to comment on other than to say that when the opportunity presents itself to make optimizations, we do.

Q:Why do we get a bahro stone link to The Great Shaft and not the swirly off the rubble as in To D'ni?

A: Because Design says so. That swirly was something that worked for the singleplayer experience in the expansion pack, but wasn't necessarily part of the original plan for Live.

Christian Walther
Q:Since the Mac version has been publicly released, do you have any statistics about how many people who previously played on Windows now play (primarily) on Mac OS (in relation to the total number of players)? Has there been a measurable surge of new Mac-only players?

A:(04/10 16:42:04) Gregbert: conversation occurring here...
(04/10 16:44:47) Rehearsal Moke: Yes, we've seen a surge on LIVE - not as big as we had hoped or expected. Keep encouraging your Mac friends to check us out.

Hoe KanDat
Q:Should we re-open tickets on bugs each new build when we see a reported bug is not yet solved? On some we get feedback in the 'new and fixed list' shortly before re-opening, but I am not sure every fixed thing is in that list.

A: That's correct. The list of fixes when rehearsal opens is just a list of the more notable fixes. As I said in the meeting, it's ok to reopen a ticket as long as you're sure it's the same bug.

Q:Why on the number keypad the numbers 2468 are the only ones that work in game. I work all day typing in numbers and it is so much easier and faster to type numbers from the number keypad. Sorry if this has been brought up already. I am new to rehearsal and was just wondering.

A: n00b! (just kidding :)) Those keys do not function in game because they are also available as avatar control options. We do have a feature request in to make them available for numerical input.

Q:The missing footstep sound problem continues to plague the game, it is a small thing yet significant in terms of immersion. It is NOT a game breaker by any means, but is this something we should keep ticketing? Like the Tan Bahro cave, when it should be Blue until completed and then yellow? Please advice on repeat ticketing.

A: Repeat ticketing is a good thing. Just reopen your ticket, mention that you are still seeing the bug on whatever version you're testing, and that info will get added to the bug.

Q:Is there a way to recommend additional Beta/Rehearsal testers to CYAN, if we believe they have a desirable skill-set to bring to the table? Is CYAN still looking for additional testers, particularly on the Mac platform? If so, how can we best address this without compromising our NDA?

A:(04/10 16:19:05) Tor'i: Just log a support ticket and select the category of 'other' and I will add them to the list!

Q:I never saw a Bahro in the city. Did this happen? Was I asleep?

A: Since I'm not Santa Claus, I do not know when you are sleeping and when you are awake so it is hard to say if you were asleep. We will arrange for some City Bahro appearances if you wish to see them. We did test them quite extensively, and it was a bit of a misnomer when I said we neglected to test them. What I meant by that was that I neglected to set up specific appearances like I wanted to as I did previously with the Great Zero tests. If you see me on rehearsal, just give me a holler and I'll make them dance for you ;).

(04/10 16:15:26) Pad
Q:what can we expect in the future in regards to more rehearsal testers, bug fixes, and better support?

A: I spoke with Pad about this after the meeting (my response during the meeting was pretty brief since we were short on time), and I'll pass along what I told him (I hope he doesn't mind):

re: Why more rehearsal testers, and what to expect in the furure regarding this:

"There will always be attrition in the rehearsal group. We have members that simply no longer wish to burden themselves with the pressures of having to monitor what they say in Live or on the forums, or members who simply do not wish to be spoiled with seeing the new content out of context and with no story. Rehearsal members resign all the time. We have a list of explorers who have requested to be in rehearsal. When one person resigns, we simply go to the list and invite the next person on the list. This is a continuing process that we manage. There are also times when we will choose to bump the rehearsal membership in an effort to increase concurrency (i.e. the average number of explorers on at any given time), as has happened recently. We have a target number of rehearsal members that we want to maintain, but if concurrency is low then we increase that number to increase concurrency. I don't forsee a steadily rising target membership number. We like that number to remain static."

re: When can we expect fixes to older bugs to be implemented into Rehearsal builds coming out:

"Without knowing specifically which bugs we're talking about here, it's rather difficult to give you an accurate answer to that, but what I can tell you is that at least once per version we try to take a step back and re-evaluate the gameplay experience and redefine our list of bugfix priorities based on that. For example: lets say that there's a bug that you have seen for months now that is really annoying you. You may wonder why it remains after all this time. Let's use the marker bug in the City as an example - you know, the one where four of the red/green mission markers did not go away when you registered them? That bugfix was pretty low on our priority list for quite a while. Now we have the Great Zero stuff happening on Live soon, so the priority for that bug was raised because there will be a great deal of attention paid to the marker missions. That's why it's now fixed. That's kind of how we have to prioritize some of the bug fixes. We look at the severity of the bug, what it involves as far as fixing it goes, and we look at the schedule and determine if our time is better spent fixing that bug, or if it would be better to work on new content and fix that bug when the schedule says we'll have more people experiencing the bug. It's kind of a judgement call and a balancing act."

re: Is Cyan going to be adding more people into the support end of Uru.

'Right now, we feel that we are at a pretty good equilibrium point with the number of support staff vs the number of customer care calls. Obviously that will have to be adjusted if the number of eplorers increases dramatically, but for now we think the support staff is sized correctly."

(04/10 16:45:09) lightkeeper
Q:Do you want us to use new avies each build? Start over from scratch I mean?

A:(04/10 16:45:44) Gregbert: We would like as much testing as possible on every build - with new and existing avatars, so yes.

Q:Exploits to get advanced content in Live have been a problem on the Live server in the past month (the Dereno book, the 5th sparklie for example). What can we do to really make sure these exploits are squashed in Rehearsal before they get pushed?(Asked it slightly differently)

((04/10 16:49:53) MustardJeep: This seemed a non-issue; which caught me, Here in rehearsal it's ok to test for exploits brought up in normal gameplay? Just another Bug, Yes?? )

A:(04/10 16:51:04) Gregbert: yes - but we would sternly council you against using (on Live) any exploits or anything else for that matter - that you learned of in Rehearsal

Q:I, too, have been unsure about ticketing footstep sound anomalies since they've been with us for so long and, as CrisGer has said, the issue isn't a show-stopper. I have ticketed most of them, but I always wonder if my doing so is needlessly taking Cyan's attention away from something more crucial.

A: Ticketing bugs you see on rehearsal is what rehearsal is all about. There is no need to feel like you're needlessly taking up our time - especially if you're still seeing the bug. The tickets you submit are part of the player input that you give us, which is part of what determines a bug's priority.

Q:How much of the content in the suggestions section of the Uru Live Forums actually gets put into a guild?

A: That's up to Design.

Q:Can you post a summary of the conditions under which an avvie should enter a blue cave and when it should enter an orange cave?

A: I did answer this during the meeting, but the only time you should see an orange cave is during the first journey, when returning the Bahro poles to the Bahro Cave. All other bahro caves should always be blue.

Q:A number of the bugs which are currently afflecting MOUL where also present in Until Uru and where fixed.. The one that particularily springs to mind is the players list. This was fixed in Until Uru so that if you closed the list it stayed closed. It was fixed by D'Lanor and I know he has sent the code to Cyan. Is there any reason for not using known working fixes when they are available?

A:(04/10 16:28:21) Gregbert: Not everything works the same way it did in UU 'engine-wise'
(04/10 16:28:59) Gregbert: but things that will work do get used, and we always appreciate the input

Q:The fix to prevent ResEngs being added as buddies in Live seems to be behaving inconsistanly, i was in a bevin with one was on the age list the other wasnt. The one on the age list could be added to the screne buddy list but not in Ki one. The other the KI said they where already on list but was not added to either.

A:(04/10 16:49:45) Gregbert: I responded to this in the forum. To save time, I'll refer to that post:

Whether or not a ResEng would appear on a buddy list will depend on whether or not they are using the CSR (Customer Service Representative) mode. I agree that it could be confusing to see the discrepancy - you make a good point. We should probably work to make certain they're always in CSR mode, or at the very least two ResEngs in the same Age should have the same CSR status.

(04/10 16:29:09) Vortmax
Q:When going through the new sets of Bahro caves, instead of falling into the Cavern (if you've finished the Prime Journey), you fall into stars, but with the same camera angle and ceiling chunk you'd see if falling into the Cavern. Is this intentional? (It's in Live too.)

A:(04/10 16:30:17) Gregbert: it's a bug. The only time you should see an orange cave, or the cavern drop animation is in the original bahro cave. All other caves should always be blue

Q:Please tell us why - even with highspeed broadband cable - the "Checking for Updates" portion of the download screen takes 15 minutes or more when the download itself takes only 15 seconds?

A: This should be much improved with the patcher in Live 5.

Q:Is Cyan bothered by the fact that explorers on Live dig through the files and spoil the surprise for others?

A: There will always be people looking in the game files to see if they can gleen some secret knowledge. It's hard to explain to someone what they are missing by spoiling it for themselves like that - which is quite a bit different than spoiling it for other people, which I really hate to see. I'm speaking only for myself here, but I'd rather we spend our time working on great new content than engaging in an endless game of hide and seek with gifted individuals who will take any encryption scheme implementation as a challenge to prove that they're better than Cyan. Does that mean we'll never do it? Not necessarily.

Q:You were expressing dissatisfaction with the level of concurrency at the last meeting. I've noticed that in Rehearsal the "attendance" is highest during the first week a new build is released for testing. The second week it gets pretty lonely. What about witholding some of the build until the second week? It's the way it will be released to Live so it might highlight any issues with turning on the new features. In the worst scenario, if the second week's content had serious bugs you could keep Rehearsal up a few extra days to concentrate on that problem. I'm just nervous that more Rehearsal members, the other way to increase concurrency, brings with it an increased risk of secrets being leaked (inadvertently ,I'm sure).

A: You noticed that too, eh? :) That would certainly do the trick, but delaying some of the rehearsal content is something we really don't want to do, as it results in fewer testing hours on that content and less time to implement bug fixes, plain and simple.

Q:What is your acceptable level of Rehearsal membership as a percentage of subscribers? With now over 1100 Rehearsal members and a wild guess of 12,000 subscribers playing, that's a significant 9% of players who know the secrets, increasing your risks and initially reducing play after a new push because of NDA restrictions. So at some point, it must become absurd enough that we must be encouraged to contribute more often to keep Live from becoming the defacto Rehearsal server.

A: Further discussion about this in the thread emphasized the fact that the 1100 number is inacurate due to duplicate and triplicate entries in the Rehearsal member list, so the percentage of total subscribers that are rehearsal testers is far less than 9%, but let's just answer it this way: we're satisfied with the level of rehearsal membership at this time. Besides, I like to think of the rehearsal membership number as a percentage not only of current subscribers, but of all of the BILLIONS of subscribers to come. :)

Q: Any issues on Cyans side on our play in live as long as we mind our NDA's?

A:(04/10 16:53:45) Gregbert: Not at all. Please do lots of both. Play, and minding the NDA

Q:Will we be able to test for an occurance of the "all black" bug that Nerf was referring to? Where we all try linking at once from Payferiren (or one of the other pod ages), and try to simulate the strain of the Live server with our meagre numbers.

A: Absolutely. That's very important testing, and coordinating this with each other through the forums is something we've already seen done. I would certainly be willing to help coordinate any group test ideas you come up with if needed, but this rehearsal group is extremely responsive, so you should have no trouble getting help if you talk about it with each other in the forum.

(04/10 16:54:41) JWPlatt
Q:If I can slip one in, have we improved attendance?

A:(04/10 16:55:40) Gregbert: concurrency is improving.

Q:I'm new, and when I log on it's usually pretty lonely. One other person 'Sorceress' is always on my list but does not seem to be really there. Are there many other Australians and New Zealanders in Rehearsal?

A: I don't have the exact number, but we definitely have representation from our friends down under.

Q:Is there a population cap in the Ages like there is in the city, and if so what is it?
A:(04/10 16:54:55) Gregbert: Chogon: There shouldn't be any caps on any Age other than the City
(04/10 16:55:16) MustardJeep: 40 in the teledahn bucket then.
(04/10 16:55:23) essjay cheers
(04/10 16:55:24) Natika: lol
(04/10 16:55:26) ShareAges starts to laugh
(04/10 16:55:27) Jishin: I am so there. (;
(04/10 16:55:27) Carrot: D:
(04/10 16:55:27) borg1985: lol
(04/10 16:55:2 lightkeeper: Yahooo
(04/10 16:55:29) Jeffrey does a dance
(04/10 16:55:29) MustardJeep: sardine city
(04/10 16:55:42) Jeffrey Lewis: hehe, I'd love to see that mutant fall outta the basket

Q:I know people have grumbled before about these roundtables happening during hours when half of North America is still at work. We know they have to be during Cyan work hours and yet not too late for Europe. Still, it's painful to have to miss them all. If they were announced as far in advance as possible, more of us could arrange some time off. The Friday before a Monday roundtable is not much "in advance" when you can't read the forum until that evening and the earliest you can ask for the time off is the Monday morning. Just saying. Sad. At least there are chat logs promptly! Thank you.

A: To that, all I can say is that hopefully the hours upon hours (upon hours) that I spend answering these questions from my Lazy Boy on my days off are a good enough demonstration that although you may miss out on the chance to attend in person, all you're really missing out on is the chance to see our avatars for the few minutes we can be in attendance. We do these roundtables because it is important to you, and we really only have a small window of opportunity to do it, so we do what we can and I do my best to get to all of the questions when I can. So not being in attendance really just means that you're not in attendance.

Robert The Rebuilder
Q:It would be great if the DRC could be in cavern at least once every day - people look forward to their visits so much, and this would really help increase the frequency of MO:UL subscriber visits (IMHO). Are the DRC already doing this (and we've either not been around at those times, or the people who did encounter the DRC just haven't been posting chat
logs)? If not, what Cyan resources would be needed to support this?

A: That's a question for Design. I can't really speculate on the behavior of the DRC.

Q:Would it be possible to hold future Round Table meetings on a Saturday?

A: Our Friday is already your Saturday in New Zealand, is it not? Seriously though, the roundtables are scheduled for the time that yields the possibility for the most Cyantist-bang for your buck. Saturdays generally do not provide that.

Q:Would it be possible to provide some sort of perk for all the hard work the Rehearsal testers provide? Perhaps something such as a discount for gametap subscriptions (an offer along the lines of the gametap half price anniversary deal perhaps). (Asked it slightly different per discussion before the meeting)(Had a question come up on perks that I really didn't know how to slot into the list (understatment), any possibility of asking for small stuff like hardhats that can be explined as gameplay? )

A:(04/10 16:14:15) Gregbert: Do you mean rewards for the rehearsal testers on Live?
(04/10 16:14:55) MustardJeep: Yes/No like I said rather hard to slot, can I ask about a few things later
(04/10 16:15:15) Rehearsal Moke: Unfortunately, we don't have time right now to pursue anything like that, but it's an
interesting thought.
(04/10 16:15:42) Rehearsal Moke: More minds will have to chew on that before we can get you a better answer, MJ.

I would also like to add that although we're certainly not opposed to things like this (as evidenced by Moke's answer), I think it's a good idea to avoid creating a condition that sets rehearsal members apart from non-rehearsal members in a demonstrable way. Think of the disaster that would ensue when (not if, but when) it was discovered that the cool new blinking neon hardhats that you see on some explorers are actually perks given to rehearsal testers. Even something as subtle as a tiny dot on the bottom of your avatar's shoe would be ferreted out soon enough. We would have then effectively given you a way to violate your NDA just by wearing the item. As Moke says, though, let more minds 'chew on that' for a time to see if they can come up with something. I personally would love to see something like this, but my rational/cautious side tells me that a list of rehearsal testers will inevitably appear on the forum faster than the pod portal times did. If someone can come up with an idea that doesn't involve us violating your NDA for you I'm quite certain that 'more minds' would entertain the idea.

Q:Could a perk of being a rehearsal tester be to receive all (or most) of the selective content in live? (the things you can't get by finding them in an age, such as the mysterium t-shirts). If this needs time to be decided on, can we have the T-shirts in live in the mean time?

A: That's an interesting idea, but as far as the Mysterium shirt goes I think it's likely that if you have no code (given out to those in attendance), then you get no shirt on Live. Part of what makes them cool is that if you were at Mysterium and have the shirt, and then you see one on another avatar in Live, you know you've seen that person at Mysterium.

Q: Is there any luck with alternating the hood garden ages? I heard this was met with limited success in Rehearsal 3(?). My hood in Live is griping about wanting a change of scenery.

A: That's up to Design, and it's not a question of luck. If the DRC wishes for more variety in the dispursement of the garden Age books, they'll see to it. Maybe it's a good thing to take up with them when you see them, I don't know.

Q:Rehearsal this time around seems much smoother. It was pushed to live on time and there is a fair amount of content to be pushed out over two weeks. Is this a sign that all the pieces are starting to fall in place at Cyan (everyone is getting used to the routine)? Or were we just really lucky this time?

A: Answered above. See: kicking and screaming, and hair pulling.

Q:Will there or are there plans of making selectable content for Relto? Instead of on or off, we can have either or. Like a selection of roofs instead of just a better one. Or a selection of trees. If Relto is going to come to reflect our soul it needs to do more then show how many pages we have collected.

A: We have many feature requests asking for this very thing. It certainly may come to pass. We could use another one though, it seems (wink-wink, nudge-nudge, say-no-more).

Q:What is the current Deffinition of what a link image shows? Last I remember the image is chosen from the first time someone uses the link. In that case Shouldn't all the images show ruble free true pictures of A'gura and other locations... no cones and DRC signs and things... or has Yeesha changed the images due to her manipulations of the books (and if that is the case, why doesn't the Relto book update every time we change a yeesha page). As I said.. its something that has been bugging me and taking me out of the "story mode"

A: What a great question for the DRC Site forums. Ask away there...

Q:Concurrency issues. We have some ideas about how to improve testing them in the forum. Do you have anything to add to our ideas, and are there things in specific we should test concurrently?

A:(04/10 16:40:22) Gregbert: big question. The things I've seen there look really good - I've seen some great test cases getting set up. Keep up with that. If there is something specific we need or want to add, we'll chime in. But again, I think this is an excellent group and you're definitely on the right track with that line of testing.

Q:To echo the 'lonely login' comments. Living in the PDT zone and often working late does make for few being online in rehersal when I'm on. Generally I've been either in mid-evening 8- 11 or 11PM to 2 or 3 AM PDT
Anyone living on the Pacific Coast in the PDT zone, who ever needs another for testing or checking, or even getting thru the doors in Tsogal, please don't hesitate to try to connect with me. (Though I've pretty thoroughly been thru and tested the game all the way through again, the one part I haven't myself done, this build, are the multi-player ages e.g. Tsogal, as I haven't seen more than one or two players around online at any point in the evenings, and I've been on playing literally every night since I started in Rehersal. So, on the reverse side, it would be good to know of anyone generally around on what would be PDT hours in the evening because if not, I'll just start sheduling some of my playing in some afternoons and reshedule my work day accordingly.

A: I've read that twice, and can now conclusively state that there is no question there...

Q:There is already the ability for every tester to get an e-mail when a call for help goes out. Cyan doesn't even have to do anything. Just one person can be assigned for this task... A MOD can sticky a thread that is ONLY used when Cyan makes a call for ppl to logon in the Rehearsal General area. Then players that want the notifications can click the, "Watch this topic for replies" link.


Q:What decides which KInumber you get? Why are some numbers skipped and what happens to them? (Or numbers aren't skipped and there are over three million avatars on the Live server Confused) Are all personal instances created when you make your avatar or when you use the books?

A: The KI number is really just an id number that is assigned to things in the game. It is assigned at the time you create an avatar and does not represent how many avatars there are.

Q: What do the vault nodes do? Aren't they connected with the instances?

A: From EAP:"They make EAP's life a living heck." In addition to that primary, truly valuable role "...the Vault is a heirarchy of related bits of information. we call these bits of information 'nodes'. there are lots of different node types ranging from players to KI images to age invites."

Q:How was the testing rate this time around?

A: I'd say it was top-notch. We had some really good turnaround times on some great bugs that we were happy to see fixed.

Q:Is Live living up to Gametap's expectations?

A: I can't speak for Gametap or their expectations. I am not in a position to know those things, but if you want me to wax business/philosophical on you I would probably say (from a completely uninformed and unofficial stanpoint) something really generic like the fact that I'm sure that there are goals that Gametap has in mind for Cyan and Uru - some of which we may have met, some of which we have yet to meet. I might further postulate that each goal that we do achieve no doubt presents an opportunity for another series of goals to strive toward, and so on. was that? Best I can do.

(04/10 16:45:53) Hu K'hanDhat
Q:have we improved in our testing?

A:(04/10 16:47:24) Gregbert: Absolutely. LBell says that you're probably better rehearsal testers that most studio regular testers. And I'd like to add that evidence of this can be found right in the rehearsal forum in the way that you communicate your testing objectives and ideas.

(04/10 16:47:42) ShareAges A.K.A. ToriaUru
Q:do you like the idea of my avie where I'm speficially asking for people o test all my ages in groups, small and big? And thanks for the answer to Jishin's question Oh, and we're sending you all Coffee at Cyan because EAA said the coffee was lousy

A:(04/10 16:49:02) Gregbert: I do like that. You're welcome for the answer, and thank you for the coffee. I can't wait to taste it. LBell says that we really like it when you organize and coordinate your testing. I do too.

(04/10 17:04:25) Rocky
Q:was anything brough up about the Leaks to Live ?????????

A:(04/10 17:06:51) To Rocky: Two, if you see a imager with no-no images call costomer service thru the spanner icon, they can pull the posters ID off them



Last edited by gregbert on Tue Jun 26, 2007 4:52 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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