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Darkrasp

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About Darkrasp

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  1. Good evening, Since I've been doing a ton of writing for the forums and busy at work IRL, I haven't gotten as much done this week as I would have liked. A lot is going on right now and I figure it's probably best to leave my blog post until next week when I can do a more substantial post, having had time to catch up more thoroughly with the rest of the team. You'll have to make do with the project update posted on Saturday and the Q&A posted yesterday for now. We're also working on a few things we want to keep quiet for a little bit longer, so again, best to have a slight delay and then we can talk about all that next week. So, this week's blog will be postponed and I'll write one on Monday, July 31st. If you're anxious for discussion, it's worth mentioning again that we have reopened our public discord - you can access it from the "Browse" button in the bar right below the Crestfall Forums banner. The team is in there pretty frequently chatting, and as mentioned, we are looking for some more mods. I've gotten a couple applications so far and the more the merrier. Note that we're not making schedules or demanding you spend so many hours modding; if you're in there lurking or chatting already, you'll get some loose guidelines on keeping things under control, and that's all we'd ask you to do. Just make sure things aren't getting out of hand while you're around anyways. If you're interested, PM me on the forums, or on Discord. Alright, better stop before this actually does turn into a blog post Talk to you soon.
  2. It has come to our attention that someone is impersonating Asura on reddit. Both Asura and myself completely ceased all reddit activity months ago, and Crestfall does not have an official reddit presence. All Crestfall staff members were requested to stay away from /r/wowservers and /r/legacyrealms long ago. We do not know who this person is, nor do they have any affiliation with Crestfall. Please treat anyone claiming to be a member of the Crestfall staff as an impostor. Thank you.
  3. We have addressed this matter officially, therefore I will now close this thread.
  4. Good afternoon, I'm sure many of you have read the recent round of drama on wowservers. We had hoped that moving to silent development after the LGN fallout would allow us to move forward with our most dedicated, committed beta testers and focus purely on development. Obviously, someone wasn't on the same page as the rest of the team. Said post was clever. Just enough truth, twisted to be presented in the worst possible light (and mixed with some outright lies), in order to make things look significantly worse than what they are. So, to the truths from said post. Yes, around 15 people from the beta team have become inactive over the last 2-3 months. Yes, Ghostly is now 'leading' the testers. This isn't because Asura can't be bothered, but because we did learn from when Outstanding quit and decided to start delegating some of the responsibility to others. Yes, the dungeon/raid clustering node is currently switched off, we already know clustering works and aren't interested in working on that content at this time. Yes, we recently missed a deadline for Q&A 4. It's drafted, Asura got back from his business trip on Saturday and it is just waiting for review. It should be with you shortly: As you can see from when Q&A 3 was closed, we anticipated a delay because of Asuras business trip. This is not news to anyone who was paying attention to the forums. On to the meat of the matter: Bugged classes unfixed since January/February? True, and untrue. Class fixes have been a lower priority over resolving underlying mechanics like dodge chance calculations, pathing, and things of that nature, but they've been getting picked at, and are now a major focus. The last big push of class fixes was 11 days ago, which fixed about 200 broken player spells. Our first scripters have access to the scripting machine and are now active. It's behind schedule, but it is active. Soulson has some connection issues which are taking time to fix, hopefully those are resolved soon. Crogge is not, has never been, and will never be, a dev or a scripter on Crestfall. He handles hardware and the website behind the scenes, so as long as the machines are running, he's doing his job. He has also never threatened beta testers with removal from the project, aside from one time whe he did warn people to stop carrying on a personal vendetta on the Elysium forums which was reflecting badly on the Crestfall team. While many events remain to script, the 1-60 experience is far from unfinished. It is entirely possible to level 1-60 through every zone in the game and the majority of quests can be completed. Does this mean we're ready for release? No it doesn't, hence why we're still in beta and still have scripters working through the content polishing it. PvP has been informally tested throughout the project and is far from "completely" untested. A PvP-specific testing wave is planned to come in before open beta. We are completely rewriting this emulator using the Ascent framework. This isn't the hackfixed Mangos realms we've been used to for the last seven years. There are no band-aid fixes to get things to an approximation of blizzlike. We have completely torn out whole sections of code and written them from the ground up, in line with modern professional coding standards. This includes systems such as the spell attribute system, loot templates and profiles for every mob and boss in the game, the clustering system and many more. These haven't been patched over by a team working from a relatively modern Mangos release, they have been personally rewritten from scratch by our core and database devs. Testers have reported well over a thousand issues so far, and our fix rate is currently around 65%. That doesn't mean there aren't still more things to find, but it should show the percentage and how far we have moved along as a project. Currently, Asura is working on an in-depth debug system for testers in cooperation with Roadblock, who is building a custom addon that will feed more data back to the devs and allow testers to get detailed info on combat calculations. This gives testers unheard-of ability to scrutinize the internal workings of the code, and should help expose any remaining core bugs still undiscovered. Now, on to the accusations made against Asura personally: Regarding the slip to 2018, is it possible? Yes it is. Do we remain committed to trying to release this year? Yes we do. The moment we change the aim of our release from 2017 to 2018 we will let you know. It's basically a matter of things being done when they are done. This is a hobby project that we work on because we want to. Reality is, yeah, the project could probably be better managed, but this is the way we do it. Asura is the only one with the knowledge and expertise to run the show, not to mention that the entire project, from conception, was his idea. Maybe you don't like his style of leadership, but that's too bad. Maybe he's not the hero you deserve, but he's the one we need right now. We haven't been setting deadlines for our teams; we allowed people to contribute what they can, as they can, knowing that everything is building towards the final goal. When we state an estimated date for something, that means it's an estimate based on current progress, not a deadline we're setting for ourselves. Estimates change, and while some people seem to want that to indicate that nothing is being done, all it actually means is that "shit happened", whether that's real-life obligations, particularly difficult code rewrites, building additional debug functionality for testers, or just taking some time off to recharge. All of us, staff, testers, and the community at large, are volunteers here. We haven't asked for or accepted one dollar from the community. Crogge, Asura and Darkrasp have shouldered the entire cost of development (hosting and domains for these forums, the code repo, the beta realm, hardware and software for security, etc.) without blinking an eye. I stress: We do this because we enjoy it. The work, spending time with friends, the whole thing. This isn't a business, or a PR firm, or a government project.. it's a hobby. The only way we quit this is if it is no longer enjoyable, something a good chunk of our contemporaries seem dead-set on making it. Happily, we're perfectly content to tell them to screw off and keep on doing things our way, regardless. If you want this to be a professionally run and managed enterprise, you're in the wrong place. Go call up Viper and Daemon, if you can find them. Crestfall, by hook or by crook, is going to get finished, but it will be done on our terms. Period. All that said, we do recognize that the undisciplined approach we have been taking gives people hesitations as to our progress, since, although work is always being done, it's difficult to put that into any kind of a timeline or flowchart. This was intentional on our part, since, as a hobby project, we didn't want to be held to a deadline, making something that we should be enjoying into a source of stress. What we would like to do is develop a clear plan of attack, some sort of progress checklist where we can mark off items as being formally finished or in-progress. Due to the complex nature of what we're making, this list would be obviously be subject to changes, but at least it would give some sort of visual indication of progress, so the community can actually see what's being tested, what's being worked on, and what's finished. This will take some time to assemble, and we're not completely certain how exactly to set it up for display yet, but we feel it will be a useful way to keep the community in touch with what is happening and allow you to see that yes, things are getting done, and yes, we are moving towards release. We had envisioned and started building a number of tools that would somewhat automate this process, so we'll be investigating exactly what would be required to integrate those into something publicly visible, to determine how much time that would take and whether or not the outcome justifies the delay. In the meantime, we wish to do at least a little bit of a return to our roots, and begin engaging with our community again more frequently. While our forum schedule will remain largely the same, we have reopened the public discord and invite you to join us. This will be a little bit of a distraction for us, but we feel it's an important part of building the realm and worth the time investment. In order to keep things to a manageable level for us, we are interested in selecting a few additional mods/CMs to assist with management of the public discord. Interested applicants should message Darkrasp on the forums. Further to that, we will also be adding some additional beta testers to replace the few who left recently. So, in conclusion, and we thank you for sticking around long enough to read this wall of text, our team is still motivated and still producing. Our intention in scaling back our communication with the community was to avoid drama and be able to work faster with less distraction, however the lack of communication seems to be driving too much doubt about our project. We're trying to find a balance point that allows us to maintain our communication without compromising too much on lost development time. It's also important for us to restate that this is a project we do as a hobby; we do it because we enjoy it, and we won't be pressured into making promises or holding ourselves to deadlines. We are committed to releasing, but we won't release garbage. This is going to be done, and it's going to be done right. We thank you very much for your patience, your understanding, and of course, your continued interest in Crestfall.
  5. We have a detailed response forthcoming. This crap always pops up at the worst possible times. Worked a 12 hour day out in the heat, stop after work and blow a bunch of money on a new TV since ours died last night and my wife cannot live without television, get everything assembled and running for her, and then sit down to relax and I'm greeted by this disaster. There's a reason I killed my reddit account and stopped reading it entirely. Long story short: I'm still working on Crestfall now, and I'm going to keep working on it until either it's released, or I'm dead. It's not the only thing I'm working on, I'll admit that it's just the largest of three or four hobbies I spend free time on, but I've got no intention of quitting. I think a lot of this comes from a specific event that happened recently. We invited a bunch of beta testers, and also a handful of community members who provide us good feedback and no drama, into our beta discord. It was a nice, relaxed atmosphere where we could talk freely and not worry about troublemakers and trolls. By and large, it still is. We asked people to test specific things, and typically they just tested whatever they wanted instead. That frustrates people who like things structured, but we were still getting bug reports, things were still getting fixed, and we weren't about to start cracking the whip on people who were volunteering their free time to help us out, so we just let that slide. More recently, we have been trying to increase our throughput and get more testing done. We set Ghostly about pushing the testers harder than we had in the past, making assignments and trying to set deadlines, and there has been some, (not a lot, but some) backlash against that. We're trying to strike a balance between the laissez-faire, hands-off approach, and the corporate "assignments/deadlines" approach. None of the staff wants to jump on volunteers, but at the same time, we have testers who maybe made a handful of reports when they first joined but since then - and we're talking about months here - haven't reported anything at all. Some of them had very legitimate reasons for this, so it would be unfair and inappropriate to name names; suffice to say I don't want any of the former beta testers hassled. Life happens. We did some cajoling in an effort to get testers working more, and that's when the majority of the people who left, did so. Mostly voluntarily, and mostly amicably. Most frequently because they just didn't have the amount of time to dedicate that we were asking for. In most cases they were also offered the opportunity to stay in the discord as contributors, because they're good people and can still offer valuable insight, and also just good conversation. Some accepted, most preferred to leave. I suspect whoever posted all that was one of the few who were not amicable. Of course, I could be wrong. It could be a current tester who is upset at having deadlines where there were none before, or at not having strict enough deadlines. Honestly, I don't really care, because it doesn't change anything for me, other than waste a bunch of my time having to respond to it. I'm still going to keep writing patches and working toward release even if I'm the only one left (which I'm not). Again, a detailed, "official" response is forthcoming, so I don't want to get into anything else at the moment. In the next day or so, likely. I just need to catch up with the European staff before it gets posted, which will depend on how busy I am at work tomorrow. I've seen the draft and I'm pretty happy with it but I won't be able to sign off on the final version until tomorrow at the earliest.
  6. Then your best bet is to hope Asura disagrees with me on this one. A bot that scans repeatedly for even ten minutes would get locked out from buying anything very quickly. Bots run a query every three seconds, which is as fast as the query packet will be accepted by the server. Twenty searches would take only one minute of constant requests, at which point the lockout would kick in and prevent it from buying or bidding for fifteen seconds. By the time that's expired, the bot has made five more searches and increased it's lockout time again, etc. Basically it's sending queries too quickly and cannot avoid the lockout timer, unless it changes it's rate of querying to something spaced far enough apart not to ever trigger the lockout - which could be on the order of one query every several minutes. At that rate a full scan of the AH would take hours, and the effectiveness of the bot is severely degraded. If the bot is programmed to make 20 or fewer searches every three hours, then it's almost indistinguishable from regular human activity, and not as big a problem. If the bot is only making a couple queries every few hours, it might get a good deal every once in a while, but it's not really going to have much impact on the economy in a macro sense, which is more my concern as a developer. There are some server-side things we can do to counteract more complex bots, but I'd rather not get into that. Don't want to make it any easier for bot makers. Speaking of which, you seem to know a lot about how AH bots function and how to program them, and a keen interest in what possible countermeasures we might use to stop them. I'll just make a note of your IP address now and keep it handy for future reference.
  7. If you're taking 10 minutes to run a full scan every time you use the AH, then you're doing it wrong. Once your client has a db built, you rarely need to run full scans anymore, unless I am entirely mistaken about what exactly that addon does. And no, it would still break for a botter, since it is counting number of queries, meaning the lockout counter increments every time the list is refreshed. Searching for 25 items once each, or one item 25 times, in a short period of time, both have the same effect. Players don't stand still in one spot refreshing the AH every three seconds for hours at a time in case someone happens to lowball a single stack of wool cloth, robots do.
  8. Not in any meaningful way. Auctioneer works by scanning the AH with a hundreds of searches to build a database of average costs for different items. The player could scan and build a database just fine, but they would incur the lockout timer and almost certainly max it out. To be clear: the addon would work fine, but after running it, they would be prevented from listing, bidding or buying out any auctions for the duration of the lockout. The good news is, you don't run the full scan every time you check the auction house, you do it a couple times to initialize the addon, and only sporadically thereafter to update it. Normal, everyday use would be unaffected. Banning Auctioneer isn't something we want to do. In and of itself, it isn't a bad thing, and it's use is so widespread that banning it would just upset too many people. The problem is having to differentiate between an addon like Auctioneer, which automates searching the database, and a bot, which automates searching AND buying/selling. Personally, I think the lockout is the best way, and the least invasive for regular players. As long as players know in advance that after they first initialize their Auctioneer addon they won't be able to use the AH for a couple hours, I think that's a reasonable tradeoff.
  9. I agree with you here, which is why I specified carefully that it was a brainstorming exercise and not server policy. Limits or restrictions would need to be carefully considered, of course. The pervading theme of our discussion was that if we decide to set limits, they would be set in such a way that a human wouldn't likely be affected by them. No human is going to preform 10 or more actions (query/purchase/list) per minute for hours on end. Yes, anyone could potentially list or buy out 30-40 auctions all at once - but they aren't going to do that minute after minute, hour after hour.. only bots do that. Any restrictions that get put in place would be designed with that in mind, and carefully monitored to ensure they aren't affecting a normal player's ability to use the auction house. The concept of a lockout timer would basically put a counter on how many searches you had made in the last, say, 30 minutes. I don't know what the time would actually be. Maybe 5 minutes, maybe a day. Didn't think it through that far at this point. Let's say 30 minutes for the sake of an example, keeping in mind that it, and every other number for this example, is pulled out of thin air and is present only to present a possible example and to clarify how the lockout timer would work. Got that? Okay. So it keeps track of how many searches you have done in the last half hour. The first say, 20 searches all just work fine. No delay at all. After that, further searches add a stacking timer of say 15 seconds each between when the search is preformed and when you can actually preform a list or buyout action. When you make your 21st search, you will get a 15 second lockout before you can buy or list anything. After your 22nd search, the lockout increases to 30 seconds. After 23 searches, 45 seconds.. and so on, to a maximum of, let's say two hours, which would require some 500 searches in 30 minutes or less. Waiting the 30 minutes out would reset your counter, and after the lockout period has ended, everything starts over fresh. To a player, they can search for their cloth or herbs or what have you and then list or snap up as many stacks as they like. Even if they want a large variety of items, they'd probably be looking at a delay of maybe a minute or two, though realistically most players are hopping on the AH for a couple of items and probably aren't going to get to 25+ unique searches, especially not in 30 minutes or less. A player who isn't a big time AH player is unlikely to ever see a lockout at all. Bots, on the other hand, would be hitting the lockout point in about one minute after being turned on, rendering them incapable of buying or selling much of anything, and vastly limiting their ability to affect the server economy. I'm afraid I have to disagree with you there. Any kind of botting is a problem.
  10. I don't have weight of law on this, Asura would make any decision regarding custom changes to the auction house. Personal opinion follows, not official server policy: I loathe auction bots; I think they're basically cancer to a server economy and drive price inflation to unreasonable levels, quickly. I have spent some time with the beta crew brainstorming a number of ways to defeat auction bots, and to improve database preformance. Some of the suggestions include 1) a limit to the number of searches that can be preformed over a given period of time, 2) a limit to the number of auctions that can be created or purchased over a given period of time, or 3) a scaling lockout timer on buying based on the number of searches done over a period of time. In each case, regular human users would be largely unaffected, but anything attempting to do high-volume trading (consistently making dozens of searches/purchases/sales per minute) would quickly be logjammed out of the system, as well as being flagged as a possible cheater for GM investigation. The question is how to do this without breaking auction addons such as Auctioneer, which rely on hundreds or thousands of rapid searches in order to function, and in many cases behave similarly to a bot, except without making purchases. The third option is probably the best one. Players would have to wait out the lockout period after initializing their addons, but afterwards could use them normally without penalty, while bots would remain broken. All things considered, if it comes down to breaking an addon in order to prevent auction bots, personally, I'm more than willing to make that trade.
  11. Good evening, Been a busy couple weeks. Asura pushed about 20 patches in the last ten days, which fixed a huge amount of stuff, mostly to do with AI and creature events, as well as starting work on a bunch more. We're also in the process of properly re-implementing all the spellfixes that got disabled when we started this project. This way we can fix the spells in such a way that they aren't just messy hacks, but actual stable, efficient handling. One quick example of this, Gorbulas and I resolved a crash caused by Far Sight (fix is done, just optimizing the code before it gets submitted). The Far Sight spell, Eagle Eye, and Sentry Totem all work in a very similar way. Far Sight and Eagle Eye both create an invisible, passive NPC, and then transfer your vision into that NPC, something like when you mind control another unit. It's necessary to disable the AI in that NPC so that it cannot move, enter combat, or take any other kind of action. It's simple enough to write a hacky "If we're spawning NPC 14495, don't enable the AI," but that's rather a lazy and inefficient way to do it, and it presents a risk of duplication, as well as the fact that it won't fix any similar bugs. You don't want a big chain of one-offs that has to get checked and processed sequentially every time you cast any spell. The code gets hard to read, inefficient, slow, and unstable. It's far better to implement fixes in a way that any similar spell is also fixed at the same time, without needing to check each specific case. (We fix this through implementation of a custom creature attribute we can apply to any NPC that needs it's AI disabled, one fix for many problems.) So, spellfixes have been going back in, affecting about 200 spells so far, plus a few spell scripts for dummy effects on things like Preparation and Cold Snap. Diminishing returns got some work, which caused a bug with crowd control always lasting 20 seconds on the first application (made Hammer of Justice slightly overpowered), and that was fixed within a few minutes of the patch going live on the beta realm. The big work has been done on Creature Events, which ended up being broken due to a database snafu. Took Asura a bit of time (not hard work, just time consuming) and things are working pretty smoothly now. With that working, we now have our scripting realm online, and the first two scripters are sorting out their security access. Nogar has also been messing around with some SQL scripting and I guess he's getting the hang of it. I believe he scripted the Argus Shadow Mage NPC from Alterac Mountains, the one that transforms into a skeleton at low life, just to test out some of the mechanics. There was another crash with item saving where inventory items were getting loaded into equipment slots and causing characters to just hang at the loading screen forever. I found that one and fixed the symptom, then Asura did some work on item saving to prevent the initial cause. This could probably use some explaining.. In order to minimize the effect of any crashes or server outages, we save characters frequently, but in order to improve performance, we don't necessarily save all aspects of a player every time one thing changes. A character is fully backed up every so often, inventory, position, health, etc.. all these things are backed up on a timer. I'm not sure offhand how frequently that is, though. Asura could tell you for sure. Some things though, are additionally saved on-demand. Your inventory, for example, aside from being saved on the timer, are also saved whenever you loot something, and in order to improve that even further, we only save the things that have changed since last time a save happened. Items are "marked" for saving if they are moved or added between save events. An issue with items not being "marked" was causing item duplication. When an item tries to load into a slot where there is already an item, the server attempts to find an empty inventory space to put it in. Our problem was a failure in that function to account for bags other than the backpack. I'm going to get a little technical here for a moment. If you're a dev, you probably already know this, and if you're an unabashed casual, you probably don't care, but I find it interesting so too bad. The way the WoW inventory is set up is by a two-part system, Container and Slot. Almost everything is in Container -1, and then there are 97 slots, which start off at Slot 0, which is your Helmet, then goes through the rest of your equipment slots. Slots 19-22 are your bags (other than backpack). 23-38 are the contents of your backpack. 39-62 are the contents of your bank, then bank bags, then vendor buyback slots, then your keyring. So you can identify any item you have that is NOT in a bag other than your backpack by those two numbers. Your equipped shoulders? Container -1, Slot 2. Third item in your backpack? Container -1, Slot 25. Etc. Items that are in bags use the Container ID appropriate to the bag slot they're in, and then have however many slots of their own. If you have a Traveller's Backpack in Container -1, Slot 20, then the fifth item in that bag would be found at Container 20, Slot 5. That's how the information is saved in the database. So, our problem. Due to a bug with items not getting marked when they should (which, I reiterate, was fixed, but it's still important to fix both sides of this in case a similar situation does happen due to a particularly badly timed crash), items would get "duplicated", not in the sense that you get two of them, but if you had say a helmet on, saved your character, and then switched it, but the old one wasn't being marked as having changed, then when you logged back in, it tried to equip both those helmets simultaneously. The first one works fine, the second one attempts to load, wigs out because there is already something there, then tries to find a spot in your bags for it. That function was ignoring Container when placing items. If the "find a free inventory slot" function found an open slot at the aforementioned Container 20, Slot 5, it would just try to place the item in Container -1, Slot 5 instead, which happens to be your belt slot. Now we get players wearing un-equipable items, items getting overwritten and deleted, and characters that bug out and can no longer log in. Fix for that was just to implement it so that the placement function took Container into account, and bada bing, bada boom, problem solved. Alright, that was a really long winded thing, so I'm just going to quickly rip through the rest of what we're doing. I'm fixing a few loot issues, tedious db work involving splitting a bunch of templates up so they work correctly, done about 100 of 190 so far, and also trying to get them to sort so they display in order of quality instead of by TemplateId. Fixed the formula we use to determine weapon and defense skill increases. Found and fixed some db errors with random properties caused by earlier typos. Fixed a bug with DoT and HoT spells where their damage coefficients were being calculated on tick, instead of on cast. Found the cause of a tiny loot bug with unskinnable mobs showing skinnable, even though they have no loot. Helping Nogar out with a bunch of db junk, he's going through fixing a whole lot of miscellaneous stuff, which is great. Probably a few other things as well that I can't recall right now. Point is, we're busy beavers. I'm going to wrap this up now because I want to get a few more templates split before I go to bed. Alright, that's all for tonight. My next post will be on Monday, July 24th. Worth noting, Asura is out of town on a business trip for a week starting today. As always, feel free to ask questions or leave comments below. Talk to you soon, and thanks again for your continued interest in Crestfall.
  12. Thought about it, but it's unlikely for three reasons. One, we don't want to release our research out into the open where it's just going to get sniped right away. I have no problem making it public once we've moved past Vanilla, but until then the smart move is to keep it closer to the chest. Two, because building a site is a waste of developer time while we still have core and database work to do. Three, because I really like the idea of players doing it on their own using loot addons to make their own Crestfall-Wowhead. I'd love to be able to compare the drop rates I programmed in with what the players are actually seeing. There are several assumptions for Paladin int/crit rating, all based on spotty, observed information rather than hard math. The 28 int for 1 spellcrit comes from Paladins with approx 150 intellect getting roughly 5% crit. The issue is that's not exactly how spellcrit works. Tseric made a whole post about how classes have an "expected intellect" value, ie., the amount of intellect they expect you to have through a combination of gear and base stats. If you have the expected intellect, you have exactly 5% crit, then you gain additional crit per point of intellect above the expected value, and are penalized below it. The problem with 1% crit per 28 int isn't that it's wrong, it's actually pretty close, since the Paladin expected intellect at 60 is, I believe, 150 (Mage is the highest at 286, the rest of the classes all fall in between those two). The problem is that the formula doesn't work at any other level. Tseric specifically mentioned this, and yet the same formula is in use for all levels pretty much everywhere. My formula scales the value of expected int with level. As long as you are equipping "average" gear as you go along, your spell crit rate should be hovering around 5% from level 1 through to level 60.
  13. It would be interesting to have a dump of proper formulas for Vanilla. In the process of building Crestfall, we've encountered a large number of mechanics that previously had been estimated, hacked, or just used TBC or Wrath versions of the calculations. Due to some excellent research and generous contributions of time and trouble from our alpha and beta testers, we've successfully reverse-engineered a number of them, but that information won't be made public at the present time. We may decide to release it later, at which point a wiki page might be a good way to do it. As it is, the biggest weakness the wiki pages have is a reliance on generalizations, or formulas that only work at level 60, if the formulas exist at all. It was mentioned in one of my blog posts how I reverse engineered a more accurate formula for converting intellect to spell crit. Roadblock and a few of the other testers reverse engineered proper formulas for hp, mp and stat gain for each levelup. Work was done to develop a much more accurate formula for advancing weapon and defense skill points. I was able to crack itemization point values using a fairly simple formula as well, so that I could derive proc rates for various weapons appropriate to their level, the strength of the effect, and the other modifiers on the weapon. Those are just a few examples, it gets worse when you have mechanics that changed frequently (see: extra strikes) or for which there are several competing theories (see: glancing blow damage reduction.) All these things had to be worked out by hand through a lot of hard work; there's no readily available resource for them. The wiki pages are heavy on the "player advice" side, but often vague to useless from a developer perspective. For now, it makes sense for us to protect our work, as it will be what separates us from other projects. Once that is no longer a point of necessity, I'd be more than happy to share all that information with the rest of the community.
  14. The answer is never "no", just "not yet". We bring in people as necessary. Right now we have enough testers to keep us awash in bug reports. When things begin to slow down, or if a number of testers have to stop to deal with RL issues, or just want a break, then we look at bringing on a few more people and new applications are reviewed at that time. We do plan to bring in at least one more wave of testers prior to open beta, probably more than one.
  15. They won't have to wait until AQ. Dire Maul will not be available at launch, but it will be available shortly after. As to whether or not you can begin the quests immediately and finish the Dire Maul parts when DM is released, I don't really care either way. Sure? Haven't thought about it, tbh.