As you might have noticed, the Venice Unleashed Enlistment website has been disabled for the past few months.
Our goal was initially to collect ~7k enlistments, but due to various reasons (explained in the previous post) we decided to wait up till 10k.
So that’s what happened.
A while after we reached 10k, we closed the enlistment site and replaced it with a temporary website until we had content to showcase.
Now, if you have enlisted you might be wondering when and how you will be picked, how will you be informed, etc.
So here’s the process of selecting enlisted players that will participate in the Closed Beta:
First of all, all enlistments go through an automated filtering system.
The filtering system is responsible for removing duplicates and other invalid enlistments and then sorting them based on an automatically computed preference score (which is calculated using the provided enlistment data).
After filtering, we go through all the enlistments by hand and collect the ones that we think should be entitled to join the closed beta.
Finally, we input those enlistments into another system, which randomly selects them until it has reached the maximum number of accepted players and then randomly categorizes them into waves.
When the Closed Beta launches, unique serial keys will be generated for each of the selected players, who will then be notified on their provided e-mail.
Those serial keys will be redeemable on a website that will be provided at that time, along with instructions on how to acquire and use our client.
I should also note that players will be accepted in waves, which means that not everyone will be notified at once.
Moreover, we initially thought about selecting ~500 players for the Closed Beta, but because of recent events we decided to pump that number up to ~1200 players! <3
Finally, here’s an infographic:
It’s been quite a while since we announced Venice Unleashed… maybe a bit more than a while.
Now, there’s been a lack of updates (and news in general) in the past few months, and even though we prefer to stay rather quiet, we understand that this ‘silence’ can be frustrating for some.
So what happened? Where’s Venice Unleashed?
Well, the truth is that Venice Unleashed has been delayed for several reasons, with one of the most important being our desire to push more features that were initially considered for the Open Beta, to the Closed Beta.
To be honest, we could have released Venice Unleashed approximately two months ago, but what you would get would be a semi-finished product and as a result we would have to extend the closed testing period while we were implementing new features.
We thought that was unfair for the people that would not have been invited to the Closed Beta and we decided that it was for the best to quietly keep developing it until it was in a more complete state.
Of course, this wasn’t the only reason it was delayed.
Both me and kiwidog also have other obligations, such as university, work and various other things, causing our free time to be limited (even during summer).
But that’s that.
Now, what’s the current status on Venice Unleashed, you ask. What’s left to be done?
Well, there are several things.
My focus has currently shifted from the client to the backend services and I’m working on optimizing server-side performance in order to provide a stable and strong environment for our players when we launch.
On the client-side (which is currently kiwidog’s focus), the extension system is still not ready, as we decided to change several things in the way it works and handles extensions, and some of the new features that we developed haven’t been exposed via it yet.
Other than that, we’re also still in the process of removing most Blaze dependencies from the client, as we will no longer be emulating Blaze (and by ‘not emulating’ we don’t mean we will be emulating it locally, we mean that we’re actually stripping it out of the client and using our own backend services instead which provide us more flexibility and control, while opening the way for other features in the future *cough*LAN*cough*).
I’m hoping that we will be able to reach Deployment Phase 2, which is Internal Beta Testing, by the end of the month, which should bring us one step closer to Deployment Phase 3 (Closed Beta Testing).
In the meantime, here’s a video demonstrating our revamped WIP Loading Screen (excuse the choppy video, my PC is acting weird lately…):
In the next blog post I will talk about the Enlistments, give some statistics, and more info on how many players will be picked, how the will be picked and how they will be informed about their selection.