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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Hauling & thoughts on patches

Not a lot of time on last night, but I did manage to get the 10 Rifters mentioned yesterday to the forward base. As well as 2 Rupture hulls donated to the corp. As well as more hulls. Turned out to be a hauling evening basically.

I also made sure that I had a long skill in the plan. CCP has gotten much much better over the last year and a half about updates taking longer and causing significant problems. These days they are usually very smooth and without significant incident. The boot.ini problem seems to have seriously shaken up their QA department. In a good way. Also I think that with the level of knowledge needed to run their current network layer they probably have a much more stable update environment than previously. I think this also reflects the fact that their programers know they are on the cutting edge of game development. They know they are trying stuff that no other game company would even contemplate. They get to play with the "cool shit". It brings out their 'A' game.

Let's face it, as much as we all hate the "lag monster", these guys are in unchartered waters most of the time for a game company. And some of their challenges aren't faced by other super computer developers. As much as some people decry the "spreadsheets in space" look of our interface, there's a reason spreadsheets haven't changed very much over the years. Sure the "ship control" interface could use a wee bit o help. But the depth and complexity of the market calls for the look we've got.

I can't be sure, but I think that with the cash flow stability the increase in subscribers has brought, we're seeing the maturing of CCP as a company. I suspect that if you compare their turn over rates with similar development houses, they are much lower and what we're seeing is the maturing of their developer pool into a truly professional development team. You need to remember that most game development companies tend to run "experienced light" teams. This is where you get a few key experienced people and a horde of young programmers/artists (because being young you can pay them less). The churn at most game companies at the footsoldier level is quite high from conversations with most game developers I've had. However, especially on the server side, the technologies they are having to deal with means they needed to get or train true professional developers. So the guys they started with are turning pro and to a certain degree they can cherry pick new members. Remember from a developers point of view they are working on the "cool" stuff. This lends to the polish of the updates and the increases (gradual) in performance we're seeing. Also I think the mad growth of the last few years is finaly stabilizing as the new developers are being integrated.

I suspect that the next year is going to be even more interesting than the last year and a half I've seen.

2 comments:

Manasi said...

Amen bro amen...and yes hauling sometimes stinks... but without the hauling it would not really be a "forward base" would it?

Letrange said...

yep, keeps some isolation from the area near the front and where I do my manufacturing.

Nice thing is local where I manufacture is not like rens where a war target can hide in the multitudes. One of the reasons I prefer being away from the war when manufacturing.