PCRPG v3.49 Released
I know that updates don't come very often anymore, but I did want to take a moment to flesh out something that has been hanging mostly unused for years. Today marks a reworking of the transheal series of healing spells. For those that aren't familiar with this series or had forgotten about it long ago, these are meant to be very powerful healing spells meant for characters that are further into the end-game. They allow for much more potent healing at lower levels by trading defensive casting for a minimum remort level and some divine casting.
The values for transheal1 haven't changed, but the rest of the table has been expanded and reworked. Requirements are a bit higher but so are the results of the spells. Transheal4 and above are entirely new.
Despite the rapidly climbing requirements, these spells are progressively more efficient to use. Each doubles the healing value of the last while using only 90% more mana, 40% more recovery time, 10% more defensive casting, and 50% more divine casting. The range at which they can target other players also increases by 10% with each step.
These spells might be tweaked going forward, but this is where we'll start. I don't expect that they'll see a lot of usage, but nonetheless it's something new to play with.
Minor Updates I've moved the RPG and database servers to a new VM host with solid state storage. You're not likely to notice the difference in-game, but it will make the patch cycle a lot less onerous.
Additionally, I've updated the website to show the console direct connect command in addition to the classic shortcut command. Discord has also been added since that is more likely to be useful to people these days than going through the hassle of constructing a new email when they need support.
Downloads Site Update I've updated the downloads subdomain to support HTTPS. The download links have also been updated to point at the downloads subdomain over HTTPS. The net effect is that browsers should no longer complain or refuse to download files due to the downloads being served over regular HTTP. Hurray for modern security and browsers enforcing it, I guess. Carry on and Merry Christmas.
Website Upgrade Complete
You probably can't tell, but I've finished updating the website to be PHP 7.x compliant. It's not terribly exciting beyond the fact that it means the website isn't a blank white box like it has been for a couple days. PHP 5.x is dead. Welcome to 2020.
Server Move Complete
The server has been moved from Kansas City to its new location. While that concludes the main downtime associated with this event, eventually there will be some more downtime when I upgrade the server. We're moving from an array of 15K SAS disks to an array of solid state disks. We're also moving from Windows Server to Debian at some point. Anyway, have fun.
I made a trip to Kansas City to repair the server. I found that the server itself was fine, but the router in front of it had experienced a total system disk failure.
Restoring service was a somewhat complicated affair involving multiple firmware updates and disk rebuilds. The router was constructed with mirror of two disks for redundancy reasons, but one of the two had dropped out ages ago. I was waiting until I had other reasons to be in Kansas City to replace it since it's a long trip to get there. The remaining disk had been dragging us along ever since, but it eventually failed as we saw this last week. When that second disk dropped out, the router quickly crashed since it no longer had any remaining system disks.
The disk that dropped out this week failed outright and was no longer readable. The other disk that dropped out long ago was still readable, though its copy of the router's configuration was very much out of date. I was able to boot from the out of date disk, restore a recent configuration backup, and then rebuild the mirror onto a known good disk. Once that rebuild completed, I pulled the old disk and rebuilt once more from the known good disk to a second known good disk. The router at that point only had the known good disks installed. A couple of firmware updates and some manual configuration updating later and we were good to go.
Anyway, sorry for the downtime. These things happen sometimes.
Services Temporarily Offline
The Tribes RPG game server and Teamspeak are both currently offline. I apologize for the inconvenience. There appears to have been some sort of server or router failure, and I'm in the process of investigating. Service will return as soon as is practical.
Moving Web Servers
This website, its subdomains, and some other minor sites will be moved over the coming week to a new web server. During this process some sites will be temporarily offline. Some older sites that are not actively used will be pruned entirely, but I plan to keep anything historically interesting around.
In any case, I apologize for the inconvenience in advance. This should have no impact on non-web services like TeamSpeak unless the DNS changeover doesn't go smoothly.
For those of you keeping track, you may remember that I first announced this move in November 2015. As it turns out though, I'm impressively lazy about some things. This site has over a decade of material associated with it, so moving it isn't trivial. There are all sorts of interdependencies which take some effort to reconnect on a new host.