We already have a bunch of similar threads but since they are outdated a bit and also full of comments which might not apply any longer I think we start a fresh one.
With switching the servers we are now in an environment that causes a bit less pressure related to the finances and the time getting stuff done.
The chances getting stuff done and maintained has become more realistic now.
That means we can focus more on the other problems which need to get fixed and the way how we can improve the mod and everything around it.
Generally we can not and should not discuss all aspects on this thread as this would lead into pure chaos.
Instead every topic should be dealt with in separate threads where we can discuss the details and work on the issues.
Right now I think it is important to write down the path we have to go and the tasks that need to be done to steer Crossfire into a better direction.
Months ago I announced the Blackstar update which I later on decided to pause due to a certain amount of demotivation aswell as stuff related to the meanwhile solved problem of keeping the server running.
I think at this point the Blackstar update needs to be put back on track but its focus has to shift a bit.
In my eyes we have to break it down into smaller chunks and at the same time also add stuff that originally was not planned.
- I think moving the server was an important step that allows us to do further steps now.
- The new installer also is a very important step into that direction as it allows players create perfectly clean installations and most importantly an easy to use installation. In the past years many players failed to get the mod installed correctly and either gave up or ran into problems which got them banned. This issue is no more.
- We have the Roleplay topic that we somehow need to deal with. I made a suggestion there and depending on the feedback we can try to work out something that encourages players to be part of the roleplay and also help clans at the same time.
- We also started to discuss the Battleship issues and how we might be able to rebalance them. Here I also made a suggestion rebalance and reshape the purposes of battleships in CF. This of course is no final solution, no final balancing and maybe much more can be done to take care of this topic. Generally I think this is a tricky topic since of course you want battleships to be powerful. On the other side we also do not want some jerks to use their overpowered battleship to bully new players.
We really have to go into detail here and do it right.
- There are technical issues to deal with. Especially since we moved servers (but partly also before) it became obvious that some part of the server software is causing problems. I moved the data about 3 weeks ago and since that we have about 100 server restarts. That are ~80 restarts too many. Most of them are not even related to random crashes but due to some issues with the clanbase plugin (as far I can tell). I cant really say what the cause is but the server software has problems to restart when loading this plugin. It sometimes restarts the server 5-6 times within 10mins (also during daily maintennance) before the plugin all of a sudden decides to work. Maybe I did something wrong when moving the server, maybe the issue is related to the new OS on the new server. Maybe the problem goes deeper than that. We also have the issue that this plugin sometimes writes the setup for clan bases into the wrong config files. This was recently critized as the workaround to this problem unfortunately resets progress of clans on their bases by a few hours (when this bug happens) with the result of lost resources. I clearly understand that this is not a nice experience for clans which really want to build their base. Seeing progress being reset is not good for the motivation of the clan members.
- The Blackstar will include new content (which partly already exists). While the story content of course is nice to have, it will not help that much with the MP aspect of the game. Of course it might bring new players to the server but I think we need more ways to keep players active. One idea I already shared was to have an extension of the dynamic universe to allow larger invading fleets and unique rewards from fighting these invaders.
- I also think we need more credit sinks similar to the cloaking device to keep players interested. Suggestions are welcome.
- Like mentioned in the RP thread I think clans should be able to increase their territory if they can afford it. This certainly gives clans a much more important purpose. It might be possible to connect this with RP and also unique rewards. It might be the carrot clans and players in general need to be active and remain active.
- Some parts of the mod also need to be refreshed. Lets face it, the mod grew to what it is over a time period of more than a decade. While some old stuff still has its charm there is other stuff that needs some updates. For blackstar I wanted to redesign the coalition stations and already started to build them from the scratch. This is still work in progress but I think this is something that could be updated even before the main blackstar release. Such detail work/rework can be patched on the fly via launcher.
- Something similar certainly can be done for ships and other areas of the game. Kuze mentioned that he still has some cool ship models which would fit as a modern replacement. Here we need to check what can be done... where improvements can be done and how to proceed with that.
Maybe we manage to improve a few details here and there... or we even go further and give CF a big overhaul. We will have to see what is possible and how to get all the work done.
- There is a good amount of bug reports recently on the ticketsystem and that is very good this way. We should really see if we can get as many problems sorted out this way and the ticketsystem allows us to track issues much better than we can do on a forum thread. Not everything will get instantly fixed... but nothing on the ticketsystem gets forgotten. Use it, provide detailed information if you can.
- Launcher content update. For a very long time the content displayed on the launcher had outdated info... sometimes did not work or provided not enough useful information. Id like to change that somehow. With somehow I mean I dont know yet but generally I would like to give it an update so players have easier access to important information. Maybe even display info about the dynamic universe or recent RP stuff. If possible even displaying upcoming events. At this point I dont know what is possible and what it would look like.
If you have stuff to be added to this list, ideas, comments, etc. you can use this thread. This list most certainly is not complete.
Details will be discussed in separete topics in order to keep a halfway structured workflow.
People willing to help with topics can contact me via a PM (conversation).
I would just like with the CF2.0 development create a dev group to discuss the technical aspects and coordinate stuff.