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Portalus Games | Official Site
MMORPG | Setting:Historical | Status:Final  (rel 01/22/08)  | Pub:Portalus Games
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Dev Journal Feedback Response

Posted by Jon Wood on Dec 12, 2007  | Comments

Dev Journal Feedback Response -

Flying Lab Software's Rick Saada takes the time to respond to some of the feedback that the team has received here on our forums. Remember, sometimes, the devs are listening!

I’ve been spending a lot of time reading the feedback from beta users posting here on MMORPG now that the NDA has been lifted, and after some discussion with Kevin (Isildur) Maginn, our Lead Designer, I’d like to take a few moments to address some of the common concerns that have been raised in these posts. A lot of it is good feedback for us to hear (and has been echoed in the beta forums as well), so I’d like to call out a few of the issues and either explain why it’s that way (if it’s not going to change) or how we’re going to address it.

The first and most frequent comment has been about our use of instancing. As many posters have noticed, we do a lot of it. More in fact than we’d like, but much of it is for good reason. The underlying reason for most of our instancing is that a continuous world doesn’t work well for a ship based game set in an even remotely realistically scaled Caribbean. We started out, several years ago, trying to do just that. We had realistic speeds, realistic distances between islands, realistic island sizes, etc. It was *horrible*. Taking 45 minutes to an hour to sail between even nearby islands was excruciatingly dull. There’s a lot of empty water out there, and crossing it in real time was work, not a game. On the flip side, if we made the sailing time for movement between islands reasonable, the combat portion of the game became maniacally fast and arcade like, not at all the strategic and tactical battle we were trying to build. The answer, then, was to use two different timescales. On the sailing map where you move between islands, the travel speeds are unrealistically quick, the geography is more iconic than realistic, and the view is more bird’s eye than crow’s nest. When a battle needs to be fought, we drop you in to an instance where you can fight it out at normal speed, with more detailed terrain if you’re near land, and at a view that is close in to your ship for excitement.

Read the whole journal here.

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