Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas Expansion - Update

We finally got everything done and installed, and it went off pretty easy. The biggest hitches were minor display bugs in explorer points, with a few minor typos and what not elsewhere.

One of the things that surprised me was the time breakdown for the various spells and skills. We only added 12 of them this time; here's a rough time estimate for each.

Level 25 mage skill 'melt' - approximately 6 hours. This skill was in multiple pieces, as it can operate on multiple targets. Not much debugging time required.

Level 27 mage skill 'spell lore' - approximately 1 hour. This was a very easy hook into the spellcasting code.

Level 6 cleric spell 'faith shield' - approximately 4 hours, most of it testing and design, trying to figure out how to not break anything.

Level 31 cleric spell 'breath of life' - approximately 5 hours. Required several debug passes to get the math right, largely because I wrote the core of it while I was very tired.

Level 33 cleric spell 'area heal' - approximately 2 hours, because this reused a lot of well-done code from 'area refresh'.

Level 34 cleric spell 'astral bridge' - approximately 16 hours. The spell itself only took about two hours, but before I could implement it I had to completely rework the waypoint code. Refactoring and updating the old code took the bulk of the time, and it broke waypoints for a lot of players.

Level 32 cleric spell 'group waypoint' - approximately 2 hours, because the astral bridge and other waypoint code was already in place.

Level 8 thief skill 'listen' - approximately 4 hours.

Level 29 thief skill 'fast talking' - approximately 3 hours, had to come back and extend its use into other thief skills that didn't have the facility before.

Level 26 warrior skill 'cleave' - approximately 5 hours. Ran into an irritating bug where cleave would cause a death which would cause an autocleave which could cause a death which could cause an autocleave...

Level 32 warrior skill 'whirlwind' - approximately 3 hours. The event handler for this was very straightforward.

Level 8 necromancer spell 'bone blade' - approximately 2 hours.

Explorer points - about 10 hours. This had a lot of hooks for display and interfacing, which usually takes a lot of time. Multiple debug passes.

Various achievements - about ten minutes each when done in groups.

There was also a lot of infrastructure and other work that went on to enable all this; between bug fixes, infrastructure, and design, the times above are perhaps a third of the total.

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