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  Title: It's been a long time..
Nov 14, 2005 - 11:43 am
Posted By: Tempest

It's been about a year and a half since I've spoken with most of you.. Work and personal like have been consuming my time, and  unfortunately there just hasn't been any time to play.

I've gotten a few messages lately from people asking what's up, so here's a short summary;

Work is going well.. My company is doing risk maangement, security consulting, communications management, and DDoS mitigation. We've grown from 5 to 20 people in the past year and a half, and are still hiring more as soon as we can find them.

On the home front, I've been living in the new condo for about that same time (since December 2005), and finally unpacked the last box of junk about a month ago. Hey, if I didn't need anything in the box until now and didn't have anything to do with the room until now, why bother unpacking it? ;-)

On the relationship front, I've been seeing someone for about eight months now, and it's going well. We took a cruise over the Christmas break.

Game-wise, I know there's a tourney coming up for the 0.30 release, and while I'm certain I won't make the free time to play, if there's need of a server I can likely host it.. Alf or Tarnus feel free to IM me. Actally, if there are any of my old friends around who would like my IM names (MSN/Yahoo/AIM/ICQ/Skype), PM me and I'll send them to you. I'm hardly ever in the chat room, though am almost always on IM when on the computer..

Entry Edited 1 time - Edited on Apr 22, 2007 - 9:47 am

  Title: My old servers
Mar 20, 2005 - 1:54 pm
Posted By: Tempest

Fakecajun write:
---*scratches head*  Tempest I've been wondering for a very long time...what de heck happened to your server?  You ain't running dis game anymore?  Are you still playing this game? And hopely you are feeling better bud.---

There were a few reasons I took down the darkelves.com servers. First and most important was that they started costing me too much. I used to have a huge operations centre with a hell of a lot more bandwidth and servers that we needed, and so could easily allocate a cluster of Sun servers for a backend database, and three dual-processor Apple Xserves for the front end web servers. That company was sold back in May, and we moved everything (that was ours) out by mid-summer. The game was then moved onto a single PowerMac dual-1GHZ G4 / 2GB ram, which was more than fast enough to run the game, but with just a cable modem (about 1 MBPS upload capability instead of the 100 MBPS that we used to have), the speed wasn't enough to let more than a few people play at the same time. Then there was one of the guys who works in the office beside ours who figured out how to cheat at the game, and did so in tourney.. I got back from some work and a nice vacation in Europe a week after the tourney ended to deal with more complaining than I wanted to pay attention to, so the server was put on our internal network and there's usually about 30 people playing (most of them in our office building for who we provide the internet connectivity).

Myself, I caught mono in December, and am only just getting back to normal. Three months of not doing much has been horrible (imagine getting up to go to the bathroom, and by the time you get back to your bed, you're so tired you have to sleep again), and I've got a LOT to catch up on, so I probably won't be playing anywhere for a while longer. I'll definitely make the time when the new version comes out, and probably would have played in the current tourney if I had been invited *grumbles at Moon*, but otherwise my girlfriend and my job are taking up most of my time.

It might be nice to have an "old-timers" game.. I'll leave that up to the people running the show (and who have more bandwidth than I right now).

If anyone has any ideas as to what to do with the darkelves.com domain name (it's being used for a whole lot of email addresses, but the web site currently serves no purpose), I'm open to suggestions.

Entry Edited 1 time - Edited on Mar 20, 2005 - 1:58 pm

Mar 3, 2005 - 10:11 pm
Posted By: Tempest

The people of Earth had always been confrontational. They had always felt the need to have more than their fellow man. When they could not achieve their goals using normal peaceful means, they inevitably turned to violent actions. Many suffered, many died, and a few prospered. It was early in the 21st century when the middle class was almost wiped out, leaving only the very poor working class, and the very rich, who called themselves the Elite. It was not long before laws were passed declaring the poor to be a lesser species, called Workers, and as such not worthy of  the protections that human rights laws would have otherwise afforded them.

Life, as always, continued. The environmental groups of the late 20th century and early 21st century were proven wrong. Man was not destroying the planet, as no matter what happened to the ozone layer and the rain forest, there would always be life that continued. What man was destroying was his own habitat. By the start of the 22nd century huge factories covered most land masses, processing the ores and minerals that the workers mined and harvested. Food was grown in vats, and on greenhouses on Mars. Space travel had become a regular means of transport and travel to the mining colony on the moon, and the agricultural colonies on Mars. Workers made up the grand majority of the population, and were bred for the needs of the Elite. The strong were bred to the strong, to produce Workers more capable of bearing the harsh climate of Mars and to work in the ozone-depleted areas of Earth. The intelligent, logical, and smart were also interbred in order to produce Workers more capable of researching and developing new ways of making the Elite's lives easier, increasing their wealth, and entertaining them.

By the 24th century, the first colony in the Alpha Centauri galaxy was populated with twenty million of the Workers bred for strength, who had begun calling themselves Musclers (me-you-sklers), and ten million of the Workers who had begun calling themselves Genii (jeen-y-eye). A strict hierarchy was maintained such that appropriate Workers would report to the Elite back on Earth of mining, resource utilization, and how much wealth was being shipped back to earth.

Near the end of the 25th century, nearly all of the Elite were living on Mars, which had been terra-formed to resemble their old home on Earth. The Earth had unfortunately since been decimated by microwaves and solar winds since the collapse of the ozone layer a few decades prior, and only automated machinery still operated the mines and factories that produced the luxury items that the Elite desired. Nearly all of the Workers were moved to what the Elite considered the Barbaric colonies of Alpha Centauri.

Over the centuries that the Elite thought the colonies were doing only their bidding, the Workers of the colonies had been very busy. The reports sent back to their Elite masters on Mars were all modified, and at least half of all resources being produced were kept locally. Research projects that had been completed decades prior were slowly and carefully made available to the Elite, and only enough that would prevent them from becoming involved in the day to day operations of the colonies. Unbeknownst to the Elite, the Genii and the Musclers had been interbreeding in their own specially developed genetic manipulation program, such that their children would have the strength and stamina benefits of their Muscler parents, as well as the intellect and reasoning abilities of their Genii parents. By the middle of the 26th century, almost all Workers in Alpha Centauri were of the new race who called themselves the Ration, after the rational way by which they had begun securing their freedom. Half of the ships that were used to transfer resources from the planets to the space processing platforms were converted into fighters. The giant hauling ships that brought megatons of minerals and processed materials to the factories of Earth were converted into carriers, and the Ration prepared themselves for the day that they knew was coming.

The timing of that day could not have been better for the Ration, as most of the Elite were intoxicated or asleep due to the use of mind altering substances that were frequently used during their celebrations, when the Ration armada disabled their stealth technologies and made themselves known. While the Ration hated the conditions that they were forced to undergo throughout their lives, they knew that these Elite were not the ones who caused the strife of their ancestors, and so let those who wanted to leave occupy a large transport ship, and begin a long journey towards reaches of space that had not yet been explored. These Elite swore vengeance on the Workers, but it would be almost a millennium before they were heard from again. Those who chose to stay, and there were very few who did, were sterilized so they could not bear more Elite children, and were permitted to live out their lives in a small community on Mars.

The days of the Worker revolution were a turning point in the civilization of the people whose ancestors came from Earth. Many of the technologies researched over the past decades had been prepared to help change the planet Earth from the disgusting polluted mess that it had become, to a planet of lush greenery and prosperity that had never been known before. Factories were moved to unpopulated planets that could not otherwise sustain life, and the Ration began what is referred to in history books as their Golden Age.

  Title: The AATraders story.
Mar 3, 2005 - 10:11 pm
Posted By: Tempest

I have a lot of time on my hands.. My doctor thinks it will be another month (maybe two) before I've recovered my strength, so I've begun a small project that Tarnus, Moon and I discussed some months ago; The background of the AATraders world.

I'll be posting chapters as I write them, and please, if you see / read anything that doesn't make sense, or you have any suggestions for plot or story lines, don't hesitate to let me know.

I've just finished the prologue, and will probably write a few individual stories that take place in that timeline sometime in the future. It'll be posted in a few minutes..

  Title: Space Stations
Feb 28, 2005 - 3:01 pm
Posted By: Tempest

There's probably a thread about this somewhere in the message boards, but I'm too tired (lazy) to go looking, so I'm just going to post this here.

In talking to a friend this morning, we came up with a few ideas for space stations in the game. First, shipyards would be removed from the game. I know, this may seem a bit harsh, but keep reading..

Each planet would, when it reaches level 15 all around, be capable of building a space station. Space stations would have different capabilities depending on the number of planets that contribute to it. A red/black sun in a sector with one planet contributing resources (percentage population) to a space station would be less capable than a blue sun sector with five planets contributing to the station. This idea needs to be further developed, but to begin with, lets say the capabilities of a station are based on the number of persons working on it, and number of planets supplying it with resources.

There would be another field on planets for % of colonists who will work on a space station. No more than 20% of a planet's personnel could work on the station at once.
Level 1 (one planets @ 20% population): Control and coordinate sector defense fighters (bonus of 100% efficiency in fighter activity, fighters will continue to attack enemies in the sector, and mines can be moved around in the sector to impact enemy ships that stay past one tick (run of the schedule). Also, the station's technical personnel could install researched technologies from the planets in the sector onto any ship that docks there.
Level 2 (two planets @ 20% population): Automatically trade resources between planets in the same sector, so if you have one planet with huge organic productions, then that one can automatically feed the others, just as a planet with lots of ore can provide it to others to help build armor and the like.
Level 3 (three planets @ 20% population): Build a shipyard. With a shipyard in your space station, you can build new ships. These shipyards will not act like the ones in the game at present, as they will only let you build ships to the maximum technology level of any given planet in the sector, and will let you build your ships with the technological bonuses of the research stations on the planets (the currently unused research option for population on the planets). A Voyager with a maximum level 25 in all areas could cost 100 million credits, but if the maximum is level 15 all around due to planets not having high enough technology, it might only cost 15 million. Ships built in shipyards will cost money, time, or both. For example, a shipyard operating at 60% efficiency (three planets devoting 20% colonists each, or four planets two of which are at 20% and two at 10%) could produce a Voyager with maximum tech levels 15 in 24 hours, or for 15 million credits. It could produce one with maximum tech levels of 25 in one week, or for 100 million credits. Note that these are just example numbers, and would need to be worked out for the game.
Level 4 (four planets @ 20% population): Build a drydock.
Once you have a ship with a maximum specific technology level, you will probably want to increase that past its maximum at some point. For example, lets say you build a Voyager in a shipyard whose planets allow it a maximum technology level of 20 in engines and 15 in sensors. The class of voyager will let you go up to 25 all around, but for whatever reason no planets in your sector had 25 or higher between them; thus, a cripled voyager. If you upgrade your station to have drydock capabilities, you can increase the technology level maximums of your ship (for a fee). You can also have the upgrades performed free (or for lesser cost) if you wait in your ship in that sector (drydocked) for a specified period of time.
Level 5 (five planets @ 20% population): Active sector defenses.
Shooting down nova bombs / missiles that are launched into the sector by enemy ships is perhaps the single most important thing you can do to defend your sectors. With a level 5 space station, there are full time gunners and torpedoe launchers trained on the entrance points to your sector. Any enemy ships will not only have to deal with the fighters roaming your sector, and the mines that impact their hull, but a contant stream of gattling guns, point defence lasers, missle turrets, and the coordinated planetary defense systems of all the planets in the sector. When entering a sector, an enemy ship may only see a few thousand fighters, but the space station can call up millions of fighters from the planets in minutes to help take out any invaders. A level 5 space station is automatically equiped with the equivalent technology level of fighters, torpedoes, jammers, sensors, and other technologies of the highest tech level of any of the planets in the sector, as well as being armed with any advanced weaponry or defences from the research stations on the planets. A fully upgraded excelsior will have a hard time taking one of these out, possibly necessitating team or coordinated efforts to eliminate the station.

Thoughts / suggestions? PM me and I'll update this entry with anything that makes sense.

Entry Edited 1 time - Edited on Feb 28, 2005 - 3:05 pm

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