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PARPG looking for lead writer!


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9 replies to this topic

#1
mvBarracuda

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Team name:
PARPG development team

Project name:
PARPG - Post-Apocalyptic RolePlaying Game

Brief description:
The project has been originally founded in early 2009 and has been in production ever since. The game is heavily inspired by gems of the golden age of Western isometric singleplayer 2d RPGs such the Fallout series (especially Fallout 1 & 2), Arcanum and Planescape: Torment. While we released a first techdemo of the project in March 2010, I had to step down from my position as project manager to focus on my studies. Unfortunately the project slowly fell apart back then as I was not able to attract a new project manager to take over where I left. Now I'm at least partially back in action and want to try to get the project back on tracks with the help of ... YOU :-)

The game is set in an alternative future post nuclear Scandinavia. Can you stop the nuclear winter that threatens to turn the Earth into a giant snowball or is the fate of our world sealed?

Target aim:
Open source and free of charge

Compensation:
As the project has no commercial ambition, the only reward we can offer is the satisfying feeling to work on a project in the spirit of the golden age of isometric 2d RRPG classics. So this is mainly for people who would either like to have a portfolio project under their belt or simply love these old school RPGs and would like to work on such a game themselves.

Supported platforms:
Windows, Linux, Mac

Talent needed:
Lead writer
In a nutshell: our writing efforts never took off in a consistent and structured way. When the project started, we've agreed upon some basic setting guidelines and wanted to leave the rest to the to be found writers. Unfortunately that process didn't work out well in reality. Interested writers in the past mostly focused on fleshing out NPCs or proposed potential storylines for the game. At the same time, no writer was really willing to commit to fleshing out setting elements and what kind of writing themes would be worth exploring in the game. So now we've got loads of writing ideas ™ sitting in the wiki but there is almost no consistency to them. Therefore we have decided to tackle the problem from a slighty different angle than in the past.

We're looking for a lead writer who would be willing to commit to the more substantial parts of the writing process. We're looking for somebody who is not afraid from making decisions in the fields of setting, themes to explore and storyline of the game. Obviously somebody who is familiar with the post-apocalypse genre would be strongly prefered.

For a more information about the lead writer position, check out this advert: http://wiki.parpg.ne...g_a_lead_writer

Website:
As mentioned above: the entire infrastructure for such a project is already in place. We're hosting our own blog, wiki and forums while our SVN and Trac repositories are hosted by codesion.com. Furthermore public releases of the project are offered at sourceforge.net:
* Blog
* Forums
* SVN
* Trac
* Wiki

Contact:
The best way to get in contact with me is to visit the IRC channel of the project: #parpg at irc.freenode.net (freenode network). In case you don't have access to an IRC client right now you can also simply join the channel via your web browser: join #parpg IRC channel in your browser

If you prefer email communication for first contact, you can email me as well at Martin DOT Vohland AT googlemail DOT com. Our IRC channel is pretty much the established way of communicating with the other developers so interested writers do hopefully have no IRC aversion :-)

Previous Work by Team:
I've been working as project manager of the FIFE project from mid 2005 to mid 2008. FIFE is the isometric 2d engine that we're utilizing for PARPG. We shipped eight public releases of the engine in this timeframe and I was pretty much responsible for the same tasks that I listed above, including recruitment of new developers. Furthermore I've been maintaining the FIFE win32 devkit, a collection of tools and libraries to easily and painlessly build the FIFE engine from source on Windows systems.

Additional Info:
Here are a couple of screenshots from our March 2010 techdemo release:
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And here's even a fancy video :-) nothing beats moving pictures:
PARPG techdemo 1 video at youtube (switching to 720p quality recommended)

Other project-related art (concept art, portraits, renders, etc. click on the thumbnails for fullscreen versions!):
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Feedback:
ANY

We appreciate all kinds of feedback. If you want to tell us something, even if you're not interested to get involved, shoot right away :-) We can take it.

#2
mvBarracuda

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Quite surprisingly for us, we had quite some interest in the open lead writer position. Our initial guess was that interest would be rather low, so we were not really well prepared for this situation.

I'll sit down with the other lead developers this week and we'll figure out a process how interested writers could present their writing concepts to us in a somewhat consistent and representative way. We think about using one of our setting articles at the wiki as starting point, and letting interested writers flesh out a number of themes (prolly around 3) that they would like to explore, based on that setting article.

But this is nothing that is set in stone at this point. If things go as planned, we should have fleshed out some kind of starting task for interested writer around Friday or Saturday. I'll post a link to the starting task in here as soon as we have figured out the details :-)

P.S.: If we go down that route, we'll prolly use that setting article as starting point for the task: http://wiki.parpg.net/Setting

#3
Walsingham

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I'm fully committed to projects at the moment, but please keep us posted.

#4
Purkake

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I only do weird Lovecraftian stuff and I'm not really a fan of PARPG, sorry :lol:

#5
mvBarracuda

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Each to their own Purkake :-)

We've got quite some interest in the position, so I'm pretty sure that we'll find somebody who's dedicated, talented and compatible with our mindset and philosophy.

#6
Walsingham

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My advice based on long experience is to set some challenges before the folks who've applied. Talent means bugger all unless people want to work. Challenges make them commit to working.

#7
mvBarracuda

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As you might remember: we were looking for a lead writer for PARPG recently. Quite surprisingly for us, not just one but a couple of writers were interested in filling this role on the team. We considered to use a formal application process to handle this but after quite some discussion on the team we realized that giving writers a formal task to work on might not work out that well in reality due a couple of reasons.

A formal work sample will tell us nothing about the communication skills of a writer. Furthermore a work sample doesn't really give us any idea how well (s)he can adopt established workflows or if (s)he's interested in actually helping out with defining these writing workflows/guidelines.

Therefore we decided to invite every interested writer to spend the next four weeks with us working on the game. Writers will brainstorm with the other developers. We will develope a creative vision for the writing department together. You have the chance to contribute with your creativity by fleshing out new writing content (as proposals) or reviewing existing content and revising it with the other developers.

If you're interested in contributing to the project as writer, please check this article at the wiki where all the details of the process are covered: Writer application process

#8
mvBarracuda

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Heya and welcome to a short PARPG news update.

If you've watched our wiki closely over the last four weeks, you might have realized that the PARPG team has been researching Agile software development in general and Scrum as one Agile framework in special. When we had our first stab at the project from early 2009 until early 2010, we ran into a couple of issues we couldn't really cope with back then:
* Lack of focus on actual development goals
* Lack of agreed upon development guidelines and processes
* Lack of communication and coordination between the different development departments

After qubodup recommended a Scrum book to me, I checked it out over the last year's Christmas holidays. I started to realize that Scrum could help us to stay focused, have an agreed upon process and ensure that developers actually communicate with each other.

As part of going Agile, we'll have our first sprint priorization meeting at Friday, 4th of February, 11PM UTC±0 at our new sprint IRC channel #parpg-sprint. The channel will be used for strict on topic sprint discussion in the future. If community members would like to attend the sprint priorization meeting, they're welcome to do so. This said: discussion will be restricted to PARPG developers to keep the meeting as productive as possible.

As we subscribe to the philosophy, that a news update without something fancy to look at isn't a good news update, there you go. Gaspard worked on some environment concept art:
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Check out the full news update at the PARPG blog: http://blog.parpg.ne...rpg-goes-agile/

#9
Walsingham

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I've been doing some work using Scrum. Like it a lot, actually.

#10
mvBarracuda

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Coolio Walsingham :-)

I talked to a couple of people who are or were using Scrum in a game development environment and most of them really liked it. This said: it will be hard to use the full potential of it in a distributed team environment. But we'll see how our first sprint works out and tweak the processes based on that :-)




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