26 December 2011

Second set of stats

Chars created: 878
Tut started 514 (58%)
Got Reca 330 (64%)
Finished harvest 246 (47%)
Killed rats 211 (41%)
Made fe 196 (38%)
Found Kane 181 (35%)
Got sulphur 158 (30%)
Got Novac 146 (28%)
Got Xaquelina 113 (21%)
Got money 89 (17%)
Got sigils 83 (16%)
Got reading room 78 (15%)
Finished tutorial 62 (12%)

It seems that there is virtually no change in the numbers that started the tutorial, just 1% more. With the new trail of markers towards the tavern, there are a bit less finishing the first objective. Of course, it can be just some random fluke, not a big enough sample size.

01 December 2011

Some statistics

At the last update, I added some tracking code, to see how many of the new players start the tutorial, and how many finish it.
Here are the results (for 15 days)

1 log ins: 1907
3 log ins: 1428
5 log ins: 1267
Chars created: 740
Tut started 429 (57%)
Got Reca 294 (68%)
Finished harvest 226 (52%)
Killed rats 207 (48%)
Made fe 190 (44%)
Found Kane 175 (40%)
Got sulphur 144 (33%)
Got Novac 120 (27%)
Got Xaquelina 99 (23%)
Got money 85 (19%)
Got sigils 79 (18%)
Got reading room 73 (17%)
Finished tutorial 49 (11%)

The numbers are not too bad, but I want to see if I can improve them a bit, especially the percent of people starting the tutorial, and the percent of how many finish the first objective.
So for the next update there are two minor changes: The tutorial NPC is a bit bigger, and has white clothes, so he is more visible. The other change is that there are more map markers towards the tavern, so it should be easier to find even without the Tab map.
I am going to post the new results in two weeks.

For the next client update, sometime in late December or early January, I want to have a new tutorial island, with a new tutorial quest, which should slightly improve the number of people that don't give up.

11 February 2011

Eternal Lands's is 8 years old now

Actually, it will be 8 on Sunday.
8 years for an online game is a long time. Some our first players were young children, and now they are college age. Some were 15, and now they finished college and got a job. During these 8 years, some people met and got married. There are even a few children born because of EL. And, unfortunately, some of our players died too.

The game graphics quality has improved every year, and we have big plans for the near future. I hope to finally have some terrain in the game by the end of the year, and a better lighting model too. There are also some new changes to the texturing management system, which will bring faster map changes time, and less delay when walking in crowded places such as storages. We are also thinking of moving the engine to OpenGL 2, which will remove compatibility with some older video cards some people still use, so that we can focus on even more graphic and improvements. But we won't do that any time soon, probably not earlier than late 2012, so people will have plenty of time to update their systems.

One last thing: We are going to have some contests and events this weekend, to celebrate EL's 8th anniversary. Some of those contests were announced on the forums, while other events were not. So if you want to win some nice stuff, try to be online this weekend.

30 November 2010

Achievements and more web site stuff

Now that the new web site is almost done, I want to add a bit more integration between the game and the web site.
Recently I added some achievement system, where after finishing some quests or other tasks you would get a mention about it on your player page. The player page is located so far on the game server, and I want to change this.
Ghrae worked at a nice caching system, where the player statistics are cached in an MySql database on the main web site. When requesting the player stats, it will check first if the information is already cached, and if not it will get it from the game server and cache it. This system makes it easier to integrate it with the web page layout and saves quite a bit of bandwidth. It will also display the achievements nicely, with graphical icons. Hopefully this new page should go live in an few days.

15 October 2010

Website redesign

We are focusing a bit on modernizing the website and forums.
We upgraded to the latest version of IPB forums and gallery, and since the IPB 3.x skins are not compatible with the 2.x skins Roja is remaking the whole website (forums skin, web pages layout and theme, link locations, etc.)
Hopefully everything should be ready in about 2 to 3 weeks, possibly earlier.
We also want to add a bit of dynamic content to the main page, stuff like displaying the latest news, latest forum posts, and possibly latest events. Of course, we need to moderate very closely what ends up on the main webpage, we don't want links to penis augmentation or Nigerian scams being displayed prominently on our site. So we might have to restrict the posts displayed to forum sections where only moderators can post.

Right now I am not sure how to get the data from the IPB forums. I know that the IPB guys have an add-on, called IP.content which can do something like we want to do, but we are also looking at other available options. I think we only takes a few lines of PHP to extract the info we need, and it doesn't make sense to pay for money and tech support for IP.content. I will have to look more into it.

22 September 2010

Webserver problems resolved

Fortunately, our host got the web server back up pretty fast. The motherboard died, and it had to be changed, then there were a few problems with the Linux kernel not booting, but everything is back up, with no loss of data and relatively minor downtime (only a few hours).

21 September 2010

Web server hardware failure

My webhost contacted me about a hardware failure with our web server. It seems that the motherboard died, but the data is intact. They changed the motherboard, and the stock kernel won't boot, so now they have to see what is the problem. Hopefully it should be back soon.