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GM Stormcrow View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Topic: 09DEC11 - Release Notes: Apopalypse Now!
    Posted: 09 Dec 2011 at 21:14
APOPALYPSE NOW! 
The patch for levelling down buildings in the event of a town running a basic resource(s) deficit has been completed and deployed.

More than 1 million active player population has been removed from the game due to buildings falling into disrepair.

This code is now permanently in force, and entirely running out of resources is now extremely dangerous to your town's health.

THINGS FALL APART...
  • If your town population is 100 or more citizens AND
  • Your town is running an hourly deficit of Wood, Clay, Iron, Stone or Food in that town AND
  • Your town does not not have any of the deficit resource(s) stored, then...
... THE CENTER CANNOT HOLD
  • Any Sovereign structures that consume the deficit resource(s) will be entirely destroyed.  The serfs who serve your bidding outside your town walls are far less loyal than the subjects actually in your town, and the minute you're not providing the supplies they need, they'll abandon the building entirely, setting fire to it as they leave, muttering curses against your person under their peasant-breath.  You still keep the sovereignty on the square (unless you've also run out of gold or research points), but the resource-consuming structure will have been destroyed.

  • If the abandonment of these sovereign structures that consume wood, clay, iron and stone is not enough to return you to a positive resource balance, then the buildings in your town that are consuming the deficit resource(s) will fall into disrepair and automatically level down as many levels as they need to in order to return you to a positive resource balance.
ORDER! ORDER! THE HOUSE WILL COME TO ORDER!
The order in which the system will attempt to return you to a positive balance is as follows:
  1. Sovereign structures that consume the deficit resource(s), in the order of the most recently claimed sovereign square first.

  2. Town Production Buildings that consume the deficit resource, in the order of most recently built first, excluding the Storehouse, Warehouse, Carpentry, Kiln, Foundry, Stonemason & Flourmill.

  3. Then the Storehouse, Warehouse, Carpentry, Kiln, Foundry, Stonemason & Flourmill, in the order of most recently built first.

  4. Finally, any resource plots (Iron Mines, Clay Pits, Quarries, Lumberjacks and Farmyards).
TWO GARBAGE COLLECTIONS FOR THE PRICE OF ONE
Once you have hit a positive balance the system will stop trashing your city.  It then applies external calculations (such as Seasonal bonuses, spells etc) to your new production values, and decides whether it needs to further level down any other buildings it needs to.  So it's very possible your city will get two "Resource Deficit" emails.

TAX ATTACK
We've added a popup to the "Change Tax Rate" button that will trigger a stern "Are you really, really sure?"-type warning if you're changing your tax rate to a level that will cause you to run a resource deficit. 

HARBINGERS OF THE APOPALYPSE
Notifications for each building levelled down plus an ingame mail are sent to the player, explaining what structures have been levelled down.

TLDR;
The long-and-short of this long-overdue patch is that (in case you've missed it!):

RUNNING A RESOURCE DEFICIT CAN BE
EXTREMELY HAZARDOUS TO YOUR TOWN


INACTIVES SMACKDOWN
We've done a bulk clearout of inactive player accounts, and some 8,500 accounts were removed from Illyriad.  This has somewhat freed up space on the map.

BUT... BUT... I LOGGED IN TWICE, LAST YEAR!
Any player accounts meeting the following criteria are determined to be "inactive" by the system:
  1. 0 pop where Last Active > 4 days, oldest Last Active first [non-prestige purchaser]
  2. < 10 pop where Last Active > 14 days, oldest Last Active first [non-prestige purchaser]
  3. Last Active > 28 days, oldest Last Active first [non-prestige purchaser, hasn't customised own player profile]
  4. Last Active > 28 days, oldest Last Active first [non-prestige purchaser]
  5. Last Active > 84 days, oldest Last Active first [prestige purchasers] 
All accounts meeting these criteria have been removed from the game.

SIEGE THIS!
We understand that some players were in the process of sieging some of these inactives and have had their targets disappear, and their armies forcibly repatriated.

We're sorry about that, but this was (unfortunately) a necessary step, as we became aware that some players were using the siege mechanism against inactive towns as a borderline-exploit method of ensuring that very large, long-abandoned "farm towns" were never removed from the game.  

Now that we know about this, we're going to keep our eye on it very closely, and further changes to the abandoned account removal mechanism may be possible.

MIDDLE KINGDOM GRIDLOCK
In tandem with the removal of inactives from the game, we've altered the candidate selection of possible squares for seeding new players to be a larger pool, so that the center of the map doesn't get quite so full, quite so quickly.

We are now enforcing a "one-in, one-out" policy for new players joining the game.  For each new player who joins, an inactive will be removed.  At some point the number of new players joining and staying will exceed the number of inactive candidates for deletion, and then we will review this policy to ensure stable server growth without Middle Kingdom gridlock.

HUMAN SLAVES, IN AN INSECT NATION
A large number of sovereignty bugs have been squashed, most specifically:
  • The bug that occasionally wouldn't allow players to build structures on their recently claimed sovereign square.

  • The bug that occasionally wouldn't charge players Gold and Research for their sovereign upkeep.

  • The bug that occasionally wouldn't properly apply the cost reduction from the Chancery of Estates (especially when more than one CoE was in play), depending on the order in which the CoE was upgraded vs the Sovereign claim being completed.

  • The bug that would occasionally prevent players from further levelling up sovereign structures once 20 sovereign structures had been built (with the Sovereignty/SubjectsResearch Technology).

  • Many other sovereign buglets, too tedious and numerous to mention.  The eejit who wrote the Sovereignty code in the first place needs a darn good... ohwai...
TURN TO THE DARK SIDE, GANDALF
An error that occurred when alliance members tried to invite new players to join their alliance from the Edit Alliance Members page has been resolved.

POPUP POPDOWN
Research Pop-ups should now be visible on the whole screen, and not have text disappear off the bottom of the page.

OH, OH, OH - IT'S MAGIC, YOU KNOW

New graphics are in place for a variety of magic research options, including:
  • Arcana
  • Principia Magica
  • Incunabula
  • Ars Magica
  • Apocrypha 
  • Identify Caster
  • Dispel Magic
  • Runeweaving
  • Geomantic Potency
RABBIT RABBIT
An issue that caused Alliance chat to fail over a period of about 24 hours earlier this week (stuck alliance chats, suddenly surging into life etc) has been resolved.

EXCESSIVE PLOTTING 
There were 10 squares on the map that were incorrectly marked with more than 25 resource plots, a state of affairs that threatened to tear asunder the fabric of the Illyrian metaverse.

We've mended the sundered seam using a quantum needle made only of uncertainty - and thread purloined from the Many-Angled Ones lurking at the bottom of the Mandelbrot set - and we now believe that we have fixed the underlying issue that caused this to happen in the first place.  These squares have now been adjusted to add up to 25 plots only.

Players who may have settled on one of these 10 squares in the sadly incorrect expectation of having 7 food squares can open a Petition explaining which of their existing other plots (Wood, Clay, Iron and Stone) they wish to give up - and receive the 7 food distribution instead.  Please note that this will cause the destruction of any resource building already built on a "given upp-ed" plot.

Regards,

SC


Edited by GM Stormcrow - 09 Dec 2011 at 23:38
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Rill View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Dec 2011 at 21:38
You rock SC! First for doing all the work behind the changes, and secondly for having enough brains left over to explain it in a creative and amusing manner.

I want to confirm that the negative resource de-leveling only applies to TOWNS that have less than 100 population, regardless of the total population of the player -- right?

Thanks!
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Dec 2011 at 21:41
Hey you can't steal a movie name for your update :P
Oh by the way, if we had a building in our cue and it was demolished due to the update, it still is being built, probably should make it not do that, confused me.

Good job on an update that is looks to be successful Thumbs Up
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Dec 2011 at 21:45
Nice! Great work! Ty.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Dec 2011 at 22:13
Originally posted by Rill Rill wrote:

I want to confirm that the negative resource de-leveling only applies to TOWNS that have less MORE THAN OR EQUAL TO 100 population, regardless of the total population of the player -- right?

Yes, but with one correction, highlighted above!

SC
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Dec 2011 at 22:17
Loving the changes, but still the research pop-ups drop off the bottom of the page. Sigh this is such a shame. Please try it out for yourselves. Chrome, hit Ctrl + just once.  

On everything else, bril job and loving this game :D
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Dec 2011 at 22:37
AWESOME!!!!Clap
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Dec 2011 at 23:02
Who spotted the Bill Bailey quote?
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Dec 2011 at 00:33
Hysterical (& v. Well done!)!
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Dec 2011 at 00:54
I quite enjoyed reading this
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