Archive for November, 2010

PARPG picnic massacre blues

Heya and welcome to yet another PARPG news update! There’s quite some news to report, so let’s get started.

New Python programmer on the team

We were looking for a new experienced Python programmer for PARPG, to get the project back on track. And well, we found one 🙂 We’re glad to welcome Technomage on the team who already got his hands quite dirty on a bunch different tasks.

Plans for techdemo 2 fleshed out

As pointed out in the last community update in early November: we decided to limit the scope of techdemo 2 in terms of features to get the release out in a reasonable timespan.

There will be two main objectives for techdemo 2:

  1. Document the current dialogue engine and extend / modify it to ease future maintenance and working with it
  2. Implement basic support for character stats and character descriptions

Technomage already took care of the first task and documented the old dialogue engine at the wiki. Furthermore he even compiled a list of proposed changes to the dialogue engine that have been already partially implemented and commited to our SVN repository. There are still some bits and pieces missing, but the dialogue engine rewrite is on a good way 🙂

After all planned dialogue engine changes will be implemented, we’ll look into implementing basic support for character descriptions and primary character stats. We’re not sure at this point if the techdemo 2 release will feature a GUI for these stats, but there will be at least an (ingame console) interface to query, modify and write this data to disk.

Switching to git in discussion

We’re currently discussing the pros and cons of switching to a distributed version control system among the team. Git would be pretty much the first choice for such a system but there are some roadblocks left that we’ll need to clear before actually switching. Right now there seems to be no host who offers free of charge git hosting plus Trac integration for it for open source projects. As we use Trac for milestone planning, tickets and a couple of other of its features, Trac integration for git would be pretty much essential to us.

Anyway, if you’re interested in the details or even want to contribute to the ongoing discussion, head over to our forums where the topic is currently hotly debated.

Notebook GUI concept

As it’s often said: “pictures or it didn’t happen”. We agree that every community update at the blog should come with something fancy to look at, so there you go. Graphics artist Q_x started to work on a notebook-style GUI mockup for PARPG that will likely be used as graphical foundation for a couple of different features: character stats, journal, list of quests, etc.

Here’s the mockup for the character description and primary stats of the player character:
Notebook GUI mockup

If you want to provide feedback on the notebook GUI mockup, feel free to do so at our forums. Anyway, that’s all for today. Next news update scheduled for mid December; prolly shortly before Christmas 🙂

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The PARPG revival experience

Heya community 🙂 Long time no see

The reason why I’m posting again is to report that I’ve decided to try to help to get the project back on track. I’m still sorting out my study-related problems, but things are at least on its way now so I feel more comfortable to invest at least a certain amount of time into PARPG, whenever possible.

As you may or not may know: I stepped down in March after techdemo 1 had been shipped to focus on my studies. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to find a new project manager for PARPG in the next weeks. While the developers who were left gave their best to move forward with the project, problems arose nevertheless and the project fell at least partially apart :-/

The devs who are left (Q_x, Beliar and I) discussed how to move forward with PARPG today and we decided to give the project another try with a change in scope. We’ll be focusing on the programming side of things for now until we’ve shipped a second techdemo. The reason for this is rather simple: there aren’t many developers left at this point and coordinating the work of all departments was quite complicated in the past.

So here’s the plan for now: we’ll try to get a new experienced Python programmer on board to help us in this field. While Beliar did a great job to extend PARPG in some fields, it’s simply too much work for a single programmer. We’re looking for somebody who either already has prior experience working on team projects (open source or not) or extensive solo Python programming experience. Basically someone who could provide guidance in the field due his experience. We’ve posted help wanted adverts at gamedev.net and sourceforge.net today, so hopefully somebody willing to contribute will spot these adverts 🙂

Furthermore we decided to limit the scope of techdemo 2. The second techdemo will only feature an overhauled dialogue engine and an implementation of basic primary stats for player and non-player characters. We don’t plan to add any new content for the upcoming techdemo releases besides (placeholder) art that is needed for the visualization of new features, e.g. for the dialogue engine or the primary stats of (N)PCs.

That’s basically all to report at this point. I plan to keep you updated about our progress (or lack thereof) trying to revive the project at least once a month here at the blog. In case you’re a Python programmer and would like to help us getting things rolling again, please don’t hesitate to get in contact with us.

The best way to reach us is to visit our IRC channel: #parpg, at irc.freenode.net. If you don’t have access to an IRC client at this point you can simply click on this link to join the channel in your web browser: join #parpg in your web browser.

That’s all for today, see you in December with an update concerning our efforts trying to find a new programmer.

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