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Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories V3

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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby stassy » 18 Jul 2012, 10:40

Usually if a new mechanism break the game a fix is applied quite fast, that is the purpose of V2 (and the testers that need to report asap).
You can also choose to revert back to the previous patch and wait until the fix is applied.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby 0rion79 » 18 Jul 2012, 13:46

Which usually takes a month or more, and there is no blame in it since here we are only volunteers. Not professionals with a salary.
Then a possible solution could be a focusing on immediate bugs fixing with N versions of the latest patch (not only a V.2) once immediate bugs are fixed. Then a new patch when new cards are released...
Nowdays instead there is the "culture" to make a V.2 and then to leave the fixing of bugs together with the next patch with new cards, which takes a quite long time.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby porphyre » 18 Jul 2012, 14:00

0rion79 wrote:Nowdays instead there is the "culture" to make a V.2 and then to leave the fixing of bugs together with the next patch with new cards, which takes a quite long time.
Orion - That's how small team software development works. It looks like Garagoz is the only coder right now. I don't know if there's a testing team, but I assume not.

Think of the initial update release as the Release Candidate, which goes to the testers (all of us), who report bugs.

The coder(s) then fix the problems they can with the newly added cards and release V2, which is, really, the 1.0 version of the update.

Then the coder(s) have to create a work list for the NEXT update. That worklist includes the new cards they want to code plus all the additional bugs that roll in.

Implementing new features (cards) is very hard to do while also maintaining (fixing) buggy code. I think Garagoz (and any other coders) are doing a fine job to get hundreds of new cards released every 6 weeks.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby 0rion79 » 18 Jul 2012, 14:10

This is quite obvious, and I'm not complaining either.
There is no need for you to explain me to this, since I'm here from a VERY long time and have directly coded some of the cards that you are using and helped to reach some important achievement for this game.
What I'm doing now is focusing on troubles that are arising because of tasks organization: we, as community, are both the producers and the USERS of what is done and, imho, there is no point in this patches scheduling as it is now.
A version 3 or 4 or whatever would be of great help to increase the playability of this game if they just fix the bugs that are immediately found. Then, for new cards, it is fine for me to wait all the time that is needed for. This is my opinion.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby Althuna » 18 Jul 2012, 18:42

I just need to work harder to find bugs! But lately I have been so addicted to Betrayal At Krondor :lol:
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby porphyre » 19 Jul 2012, 15:00

Orion - Oh, I get that you've done some coding. What I'm saying is that there doesn't seem to be a teamwork problem. Garagoz and Stassy and everybody else seem to be working smoothly together. It's simply that the team has decided to produce new features while fixing old bugs instead of focusing on one or the other.

You have to remember that, while we are the users, the product is also influenced by the real world. If Garagoz takes 2-3 months between releases to fix bugs, there will be 150-250 new cards out there, plus the 150-250 new cards that would've normally been included in the release. I realize the product doesn't have nearly all the cards anyway, but skipping a release immediately puts the team 500+ cards further in the hole.

The direction of the team should probably be voted on... dunno who would be the voters, but it's not really a decision that should be taken lightly.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby 0rion79 » 19 Jul 2012, 16:00

Imho, it is not like that. Let's put aside the fact that I'm a specialist in human resources, it is not a matter on what focusing but about how releasing the progresses made!
Imho, I would be happier with more smaller patches with bug fixes among the main ones with new cards. Not that difficult.
EG: usually there are V1 and V2 for each patch. Now we have had a "fake" V1 since Gargaroz made a mistake about files, and V2 still has plenty of bugs that have been reported.
Now, since he has already fixed many of them, a V3 without any new card imho would be very appreciated.
I'm just sharing my opinion.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby Sonic » 19 Jul 2012, 16:02

porphyre wrote:Orion - Oh, I get that you've done some coding. What I'm saying is that there doesn't seem to be a teamwork problem. Garagoz and Stassy and everybody else seem to be working smoothly together. It's simply that the team has decided to produce new features while fixing old bugs instead of focusing on one or the other.

You have to remember that, while we are the users, the product is also influenced by the real world. If Garagoz takes 2-3 months between releases to fix bugs, there will be 150-250 new cards out there, plus the 150-250 new cards that would've normally been included in the release. I realize the product doesn't have nearly all the cards anyway, but skipping a release immediately puts the team 500+ cards further in the hole.

The direction of the team should probably be voted on... dunno who would be the voters, but it's not really a decision that should be taken lightly.
The greater problem is we don't have anybody equally versed in C and ASM.
The link between the C parts of the game and those of the original ASM coding aren't fully understood - and much of the game is still a web of patches and hacks.

Even Mok said as much - he hacked the original game but since his ASM adaptations of the original coding the game has been hacked for C, which allowed access to the card coding as there are more people versed in C than ASM, but with the drawback of possibly less understanding of access to the ASM components.

Mok admitted his own understanding of C wasn't as good as that of his mastery of ASM, and suggested that it needed someone equally versed in C and ASM to translate the original ASM coding into C.

So without this we are left with working with what we have, or putting the whole project on hold until we can find someone who can do the coding translation. And as Mok also said - finding someone to take this on may never happen.

The current card coding team at the moment is Garagoz and myself - he does all the C coding (and a damn good job he does working on his own), I do the Manalink Excel grunt work - like adding new card sets to the database and implementing the recent Tournament Filters on Garagoz suggestion (ably nagged by Orion79 apparently :D ).
But without the all the guys doing the bug hunting work all this would be for nought - they are just as much responsible for keeping this thing going as anybody.

The game is what it is - and we all contribute because for all it's faults it's still a fun game. If it wasn't, it would have died long ago.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby 0rion79 » 19 Jul 2012, 16:15

Sonic, it is not funny at all even if it is a joke. Top respect for Gargaroz, not only because we are both Italians!
I just have a different feeling and I'm expressing it, without complaying or anything similar: don't blame me for thinking differently from the crew.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby CirothUngol » 19 Jul 2012, 17:18

If this were being voted on, I would definitely vote for a final "Bug-Fix" release to the update without any new cards added. It allows the last patch to become much more stable before the inclusion of new (and possibly buggy) cards... this could only be a good thing for us, but I'm unsure how it would affect Gargaroz or Sonic (I imagine they have already streamlined their coding process to be able to churn out so many cards every few weeks).

When assembling the MediaFire Download (which often gets downloaded nearly a thousand times between updates), I try to use the most stable version we have so that new users aren't besieged with large numbers of cards with incorrect behaviors. That alone can erroneously label the game as "Buggy". It would be great to have a final "most-stable" patch for release to the masses.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby Megres » 19 Jul 2012, 21:53

My 2 cents.

Gargaroz is doing a great job.

Leave to us the bugs.

Megres out.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby Sonic » 19 Jul 2012, 23:56

0rion79 wrote:Sonic, it is not funny at all even if it is a joke. Top respect for Gargaroz, not only because we are both Italians!
I just have a different feeling and I'm expressing it, without complaying or anything similar: don't blame me for thinking differently from the crew.
You misunderstand.

Your initial suggestion to be able to filter legal Commander cards led on to a host of discoveries I made about the Deckbuilder and how to update the banned and restricted filtering list.
It's ideas like yours and those that are inspired in the course of all the bug reports which force those doing the coding and other ancillary work to look closer at the problems, and in the process make discoveries about the game which lead on to improvements.

You keep on making suggestions - the worse that can happen is we can't find a way to implement them. :D
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby Sonic » 20 Jul 2012, 00:31

CirothUngol wrote:If this were being voted on, I would definitely vote for a final "Bug-Fix" release to the update without any new cards added. It allows the last patch to become much more stable before the inclusion of new (and possibly buggy) cards... this could only be a good thing for us, but I'm unsure how it would affect Gargaroz or Sonic (I imagine they have already streamlined their coding process to be able to churn out so many cards every few weeks).

When assembling the MediaFire Download (which often gets downloaded nearly a thousand times between updates), I try to use the most stable version we have so that new users aren't besieged with large numbers of cards with incorrect behaviors. That alone can erroneously label the game as "Buggy". It would be great to have a final "most-stable" patch for release to the masses.
To be honest I think the phrase 'release to the masses' is somewhat dangerous.

Your observation could lead to a conclusion that the games reputation as being 'buggy' is in fact a good thing - if we want to keep the following behind the project small enough to remain off the corporate radar.

The guys in the Pic Forum have just had their MediaFire account suspended due to distributing copyrighted materials - but it's not mentioned whether this was instigated by WotC or MediaFire themselves.

Suffice to say, in times of economic recession with the corporates going after the likes of 14 year old girls downloading one or two mp3s to bolster their coffers. We are all walking a fine line between being regarded as raising awareness for those owners of the original card game our project is based on, or being preyed on as a source of revenue if they deem this equally serves their interests.
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby CirothUngol » 20 Jul 2012, 01:36

Ah, the old "Evil Corporate" conspiracy. It would be laughable, if it weren't so true. If there were general agreement on the matter and it was ever deemed dangerous I could pull the plug on it myself... MediaFire makes it very easy to delete stuff. Besides, that download was originally created because many users were having such a difficult time setting up Manalink 3.0 (before the first official release), that need is no longer so great.

Sonic wrote:I think the phrase 'release to the masses' is somewhat dangerous.
Perhaps my choice of words was both unfortunate and inaccurate, as 600+ downloads do not "The Masses" make... and you will please excuse if the tone of my phrase is overly dramatic or if my vernacular seems exceedingly floral.
I fancy myself a wordsmith. ^_^
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Re: Manalink update 15 of July, 2012 AKA Kamigawa stories

Postby porphyre » 20 Jul 2012, 02:15

Sonic - Sorry, I haven't touched assembly in 20 years.... I'm a pointy haired boss now...

CirothUngol wrote:I fancy myself a wordsmith. ^_^
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