"Where the heck is WorldForge now?"

by Bryce Harrington

One question we've heard on the IRC channel a lot in recent weeks is, "How far along is the WorldForge project?" Since the project moves along fairly swiftly, the website barely manages to reveal the state of development, especially with the frenzied pace it is beginning to adopt.

Over the past two weeks we have had a number of highly productive meetings. The media developers are identifying ways they can categorize and organize their output, with the hopes of getting it into clients as soon as possible. The client development front has been quite active, as several new client efforts have begun, and the rest have made impressive progress. The server meeting focused on STAGE, which is slowly but surely progressing in its design. The Demo server, qserver2, is receiving a great deal of attention these days and will hopefully be finished some day soon; it's been rearchitected and needs to be reintegrated into the various clients, next. Unfortunately, this means that the delivery date for the Demo is slipping further back.

World and Plot developers have also held meetings to discuss cleanup and expansion of their respective websites. World is in particularly dire need of writers to take ownership of some of the unclaimed or abandoned sections of the site.

As far as the logo contest goes, the judges are diligently reviewing the submissions. They've managed to trim down the list a bit, and are considering contacting some of the artists to collaborate on some follow-on designs.

The next milestone that we are all working towards is the Demo Release. This will be a chance for us to show the world where we are, and hopefully pick up some new recruits. We've identified a number of items that we want to complete prior to the release:

We don't have a fixed date for completion of the Demo Release, other than, "it's done when it's done." Roughly attaching expected completion times to the various pieces indicates that the time is on the order of a month.

After the demo release, we will be turning our attention to building the game system proper. For instance, STAGE will commence with earnest development. Building of the high-detail dural world map from graphic tiles, will initiate. Clients will begun being tested against the demo server and enhanced and evolved. The next release target date will be some time either this fall or winter, when we expect to have STAGE at a "testable" level of completeness. At that point we will attempt to begin tying things together, and bring online our first complete game system.