Meeting:2009/06/22

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Meeting.png This article covers meeting-related information!

Project meetings are sessions held in the IRC channel of the project to coordinate the efforts and to agree upon important key decisions.

This article contains a list of topics for as well as the results of the July developer IRC meeting.

Contents

Date

Monday, 22th of June, 5-7PM GMT. If you're unsure the time difference between the timezone you're residing in and GMT, check out this useful website: http://wwp.greenwichmeantime.com/

Type of meeting

First official developer meeting at the IRC channel. Developers from all departments and interested community members are encouraged to take part in the meeting. As it's hard to find a common for all interested developers, we should try to establish department-specific meetings to ensure that all departments meet at least twice a month at IRC. This might not be needed for departments that already have informal semi-meetings on the IRC channel on a quite regular basis (e.g. the programming department).

List of topics

The basic idea is to have a speaker for every subject who introduces the topic and also leads the discussion for this specific point.

Meeting workflow

Programming

  • General programming department status report
    • Introduced by maximinus
  • Splitting up of tasks for the tech demo.
    • How to make the GUI better.
    • Are we happy with the current framework?
    • Suggestions for the dialog code.
    • Object-Orientation in the code
    • Interfaces to separate work to reduce merging/conflict solving overhead

Audio

Graphics

Game mechanics

  • Recent progress, current state
  • Are there possible ways to implement abstract structures on the programming side, at this point?

Writing

  • Where are we at with the writing department ?
    • Finding a starting point. NineOfHearts' and Dave's story idea?
  • How to get things moving ?
    • Propose (Gaspard) concentrating on a single greater location (with some quests and active NPCs) including a larger map and 1 or 2 smaller maps for quests and/or showing off FIFE and PARPG to get the Tech Demo Story going. Back story and main Game Story could be worked on in parallel.

Project management

  • Introducing department specific IRC meetings?
    • Topic introduced by: mvBarracuda
    • How do the different departments feel about having department meetings about twice a month?
    • Does it address the problems of assymmetric IRC attendance (some departments are underrepresented at the IRC channel)?
  • Restructuring the wiki starting page
    • Topic introduced by: mvBarracuda
    • Focusing on the wiki pages that are shared by all development departments
    • The department-specific pages should be structured according to the preferences of the developers of the department, though help by the project management department is possible if wanted
    • Plan: work out a proposal for a new wiki starting page structuring, post link to the forums, discuss it, apply changes based on feedback, replace old starting page with new one

Results

The agreed upon decisions are listed here. This way it's easier for developers and community members who missed the meeting to get an idea of the general results. Wording of the results for a specific topic should be taken care of by the speaker who introduces the topic.

Programming

General status report

Coordinating programming department efforts

  • Speaker: tZee
  • There is a need for improved collaboration and coordination due the influx of new programmers lately
  • We'll have to find a workflow that suits the open source nature of the project while providing more structure than the current approach
  • We agreed on working on a general design first. Based on this design we can (more or less) easily divide tasks and reduce areas where we interfere with each others code
  • With defined tasks the coming and going of developers will, too, be less of a problem
  • A thread to discuss the class design of PARPG has been created, featuring a first proposal for such a class design; feedback appreciated: http://forums.parpg.net/index.php?topic=264.0

Story engine

  • Speaker: tZee
  • tZee volunteered to evaluate how a story engine imagined by icelus could be implemented for PARPG: Story_Engine
  • The following game mechanic aspects should be taken into account when designing the story engine: Zenbitz:Thoughts_on_task_resolution
  • As there are other high priority tasks to take care of at this point, the story engine development will be postponed until we feel like we've tackled the most important other programming-related aspects

Game mechanics

Game mechanics playground

  • Speaker: Zenbitz
  • We agreed upon that it would be earsier to test the game mechanics directly in the game itself so there are no plans for a separate text-based game mechanics playground anymore
  • Testing the game mechanics ingame is needed as we want to have feedback how well they work out before overdesigning something in detail that gets scrapped later because it turns out to not work like intended despite numerous efforts to tweak it

Agreed upon game mechanics

  • Speaker: Zenbitz
  • The three proposals found here are complete in the sense that they're ready for ingame implementation and further tweaking based on ingame testing feedback: http://wiki.parpg.net/Proposals:Mechanics#Actual_Proposals
  • Once the programming department has agreed upon a basic game class structure, implementation and testing of specific game mechanics can start

Audio

Precious wasteland remix

  • Speaker: Dave Matney
  • Dave is currently working on a remix of MeinMartini's audio track "precious wasteland"
  • The plan is to give it a more Falloutesque sound
  • Changes: new guitars and percussion; silence and drone notes added to the end of the track to prevent immediate looping

Graphics

Improving graphics department workflow

  • Speaker: Gaspard
  • Lamoot's still around but seems to take a break and would rather prefer some smaller modeling tasks over having any administrative responsibilities for the department
  • The lack of an fleshed out and agreed upon story hinders the graphics department's efforts
  • Once we have the story outline we'll take a location or two from that and build it
  • We've started a roll call at the graphics board of the forums to see who's currently still active and to identify key problems that hinder the department: http://forums.parpg.net/index.php?topic=266.0

Writing

Agreeing upon a general story for PARPG

  • Speaker: Dave Matney
  • NineOfHearts created a draft for the story of PARPG in cooperation with Dave Matney
  • Unfortunately the draft has not been wikified yet; mvBarracuda emailed NineOfHearts about it and the draft is hopefully wikified rather soon
  • The draft will be used as a starting base for future story-related efforts; at the moment it's more important to have something that serves as basis to get things started than to aim for perfection
  • tZee volunteered to help the writing department by providing hints how to tackle it in a structured way; a thread has has been opened at the forums: http://forums.parpg.net/index.php?topic=256.0
  • Egalor seems to have disappeared; new contributor Cain (Tristan) will reinforce the department and game mechanics designer Zenbitz plans to provide feedback to ensure that setting and story are in sync with each other (avoiding contradictions)

Project management

Milestone planning

  • Speaker: mvBarracuda
  • There is confusion about the difference between the planned techdemo 1 milestone and the demo (1) milestone
  • The techdemo 1 will be the first public release of the project and is scheduled to be released between late July - late August if things go well
  • The demo 1 is a more polished product that we plan to hold in our hands at the end of the year; the basic idea is that the contributors can use this demo as portfolio piece
  • Depending on how satisfied we are with the demo and the progress made over the course of 2009, we'll decide if / how to continue with PARPG

Introducing regular project meetings

  • Speaker: mvBarracuda
  • We're aiming to have project meetings with developers from all departments at least twice a month, preferably at a common date on a bi-weekly basis (read: one meeting every two weeks, not two meeting per week!)
  • There is interest in department-specific meetings; these meeting could be held in the weeks between project meetings
  • Department-specific meetings would be primarily meant for developers of one specific department where they can discuss specific topics in great detail; developers of other departments and community members are of course invited as well but their time schedule should not be the primary aspect to consider when it comes to agreeing upon a date for such a department-specific meeting
  • Department specific meetings are optional at this point but the project management department will offer at least some proposal how such meetings could be organized and will support the different departments in case there is actual interest to have such a meeting
  • The next project meeting is scheduled for Monday, 6th of July, 5-7PM GMT; the project management department will create a thread at the forums to find out if an alternative date would be better for the majority of the developers

Restructuring the wiki starting page

  • Speaker: mvBarracuda
  • The current structure of the wiki starting page is somewhat confusing: Main_Page
  • mvBarracuda volunteered to work out a proposal how the starting page can be restructured
  • The proposal will reside at the wiki but won't replace the starting page right away
  • The proposal will be brought to the forums and refined based on feedback
  • Once we're happy with the refined version, it will become the official wiki starting page

Log

As the IRC logging bot is currently down, we've uploaded a separate meeting log here: http://wiki.parpg.net/images/3/30/Meetinglog_2009_06_22.txt

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