First and foremost, happy New Year everyone! We've hope you've had a blast this winter break, be that with friends and family, or on our events.
2017 Way back at the start of 2017 we laid out a sense of direction for TWC. We're proud of what we've accomplished so far, and we're just as excited for what's to come. Before we look forwards though, I think we should look back at the things we've accomplished (and those that we haven't).
This last year has seen the complete rewrite and handling of our public missions, some core game modes have substantially mechanically changed for what we feel is the better. We've seen significant alterations to the config, as well as mechanics via introduction of the '@twc_framework' (for example fatigue, medical and engineering). Changes that should also carry on over to public.
We've also introduced methods to make it easier to make operations, plus Mid Week operations have returned. Most of the SOPs have been completed, and there's been a rewrite of many core lesson plans for training. We've got some great new trainers, and we've been able to get a lot of qualifications out per week.
We've also seen the introduction of a recruitment team, to help newcomers to TWC feel a part of the community and truly welcomed, as they truly are. As for infrastructure we've added a lot of new features recently to aid with internal development, as well as opening up as much as we can without being a hindrance to it. We've seen the introduction of Discord this year, and along with it we've got some great reporting tools in there. So for those that want to stay in the know, can. We've also built and expanded on our source control, so it's a lot better organised as well as having error checking on the fly.
These are just a select few improvements to TWC, with many adjustments too many and too small to give attention to. This momentum isn't slowing down any time though, and as we head in 2018, we're continuing to look forwards and upwards - both big and small.
Public One of the core components to the rewrite of Insurgency was to facilitate future expansion as easily as possible, across all missions in a centralised manner. What this means is that as we move forward, we should see a huge expansion in the amount of content. Additionally, and as Hobbs has already introduced, we're not locked to one region or era, there should be plenty of upcoming choice to play.
There will be a big patch for Insurgency this year introducing many new mechanics, and substantially altering existing ones, but this is on the current back-burner, as efforts are focused elsewhere in TWC to bring it up to the same level. In the meantime, bug fixes and game-play adjustments will still be forthcoming.
For example, Hobbs is continuing to find new ways to kill you in an exciting manners. We've seen the introduction of psychological warfare early warning alarm systems, so you can shit yourself prepare yourself before it hits. But I don't think Hobbs is content with that alone, and I'm sure has many more things planned on killing you in the future. Probably involving music. Someone send help, please.
Domination was reworked, and is working properly. There will be some more changes coming to it in the future to make it more exciting, with some ideas that have been floated around that really sound enticing. I won't say anything for now, as it still very early days.
As some of you have already seen, jayman has been hard at work on the rewrite of Flashpoint. This is a substantial overhaul of how it functions. It's promising to be more intuitive, scalable and enjoyable than last. I know of a few people looking forward to painting maps.
Unfortunately we were unable to trial TvT on public this year, due to an exchange of hands and a refocus of efforts. This is a project that is still in motion, albeit very slowly and lower priority than most other projects.
If you have any ideas, please feel free to share them on the public server discussion forum!
Operations We've been in talks with some other communities about possible collaboration on some missions in the future, but nothing has been set in stone as of yet. If you know of any communities that you feel we could co-operate with, give us as a shout! We'd be happy to get the ball rolling.
There's been some major config reform the last year, and this isn't stopping any time soon. There's some great effort on the standardisation of things, such as ammo-boxes, to make operations a little bit more predictable in the less entertaining areas!
We've seen the reintroduction of mid week operations, and we'd like to open up the development of these to the community, as a stepping stone into creating Saturday operations. The way this will be handled will be different to Saturday operations, and the information on how so will be forthcoming soon. Keep your eyes peeled!
We're also going through and streamlining the mission creation process as much as possible. Such as introducing modules in game that remove the monotony of developing operations using our framework. Videos on how to use these modules are forthcoming.
Training We've just started work on a new training map to help better facilitate the various qualifications we offer. We're also hoping to bring this up to par in terms of standards to that of public & operations, as training is very much part of a new players experience. We hope the lessons are engaging, and are developing some custom scripts to facilitate that.
We've had some great refinements on our lesson plans following the completion of many SOPs - so that a trainer can cover others with more ease. This also helps ensure that everyone is getting the same content, regardless of which day of the week it is or if it's a brand new trainer.
There's also been effort on a set of explanation videos of various fundamentals, that we hope can serve as short and sweet introductions to various elements of our team work, before they even hop on the server. These are taking a while to create, as we want to make the videos engaging themselves. We also hope for them to be open and usable by other communities as well, so that we have greater option in the future for joint-operations.
Recruitment Last year saw the introduction of the recruitment team, and we're now in a place where we feel that recruitment is having a significant contribution to the growth of the community. Not only in terms of numbers, but those that do join us, feeling welcomed and having their questions answered.
We've also noticed that as our name is being put out there much more often, other communities are taking note of our presence more, which is opening up previously closed doors for collaboration. Oh, and don't forget to vote!
Infrastructure We've restructured our GitHub repositories, so adding new people in to help develop will be a lot easier. We've also added some basic on the fly debugging, with as we commit syntax checking (one of the most common errors we've faced). This won't prevent logical problems, or BI commands being wonky causing lag, but it will help prevent delays with operation start times or public scripts not working and so forth.
We hope to expand on this in the future, adding more in depth code analysis on the fly, to help better alleviate issues particularly with mod building, for the configs and framework.
We've managed to fix most stability issues the last year, and will continue to do so. Streamlining functions where possible, as well as further improvements on the caching and spawning scripts we use. Most notably has the improvements been felt on public, with much shorter joining times and more AI than before.