Friday, December 01, 2006

Betas Are Fun

I love stress tests. We all log on in unison at 5 p.m. EST. Hundreds of us begin pouring out of the queue and you can instantly tell what class everyone is because they're still wearing their classes starter gear and wielding the weapon they get as part of their tutorial. Then 1/3 of us being power grinding trying to make it to the highest possible level as fast as possible, 1/3 of us (myself included) begin wandering around looking at the game world and trying to see everything that there is to be seen, and 1/3 of us begin complaining about the lag in general chat.

Then an hour or so later the server goes down, and somewhere at tech at turbine checks the box marked "fail" next to the ledger entry for "Thursday Stress test" The server goes up and down a few more times that night, then stays down for a few hours before the next wave of testing. Then a patch is released and the whole process starts over again, except they made it two hours this time, which is actually an impressive bit of progress, and just one of the many reasons Turbine is my favorite game company.

And no that's not a continuity error, they passed up blizzard a while ago. Sorry Blizzard, but you know why.


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