DarkRider's Dimension

Home of the Rider's Elder Scrolls Adventures!

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10.19.2012: Making History and Furniture!

Posted by DarkRider on October 19, 2012 at 11:50 PM Comments comments (0)

Greetings Dimensionites!

Time for an update! Progress is going really well on Alduin's Fallen. In the last few weeks I've been trying my hand at learning Blender, a freeware program for creating 3D meshes. Back when I started RST I gave Blender a try and it was really challenging; so much so that I decided I didn't have the time then to pick up the skill and still make progress on the mod. Now that RST is done, and Alduin's Fallen is beginning, it was time to give it another go. Surprisingly, the second go around wasn't nearly as challenging as the first. I'v been working on a set of middle class furniture for Alduin's Fallen along with some custom dishware. :)

Really cool to be able to bring my own 3D visions to this mod. That's something I was never able to do with RST, I was always dependant on the generosity and skills of other modders to create new meshes. Now, my skills are up to the task of meeting my own imagination demands and it's nice to have that part of of my skill set rounding out.

28.July.2012: First Peek

Posted by DarkRider on July 28, 2012 at 5:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Hail Dimensionites,

Added bit of eye candy from my current "major" project to my projects page here, guess this is technically the official announcement. Playing this one a little close to the vest, for awhile the Dimension is the only place you'll be able to get any sort of tidbits on what all is in the works for this one. I'm not quite ready to break out of the gate just yet and open a WIPz to the bumps and jabbings of eager fans, though their time will come! :lol: So, while I won't be going mainstream public on it until I have a LOT more finished than what I have now, there should be some interesting bits popping up here on occasion over the next few weeks.

The title is Alduin's Fallen, it is a story/quest based faction mod, much in the same vein as my Oblivion expansion Reclaiming Sancre Tor, though unrelated to the Blades this go around. While Alduin's Fallen won't have quite the enormous scope RST had, it does pack a lot of content punch in a streamlined package and I'm really excited to have it coming together so nicely. Progress has been moving much quicker than I expected, I'll make the most of this good wind while it keeps up. Windmill Tilter, my partner on RST, will be rejoining my efforts on Alduin's Fallen, so looking forward to working with him again.


Check back often for development pics and info as I go, and in the meantime, Happy Modding!

DarkRider

18.July.2012 Dusting Off the Dimension

Posted by DarkRider on July 18, 2012 at 3:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Hail Dimensionites!

Just posting a quick note to say I'm still here, still kicking, and still modding! Hope you guys like the Dimension's new look, I've started packing away old projects, reorganizing, and gearing up for the next big thing on the horizon. I'm not ready to publish any details on my current adventures in the Creation Kit yet, but I do have something exciting in the works. :P


Check back later for more info as it comes available!

19.October.2011 For Blade and Honor

Posted by DarkRider on October 20, 2011 at 12:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Hail and Fair Greetings Blades Fans!

Well it's been awhile since I updated the Dimension here, things just got so crazy as RST headed into the end of Beta testing that I had zero extra time for proper updates. My quickfire updates even suffered at times, but were far easier to stay regular with since they were right underfoot. These are things of the past now, there will be no more quickfire updates for RST in the future because well...Reclaiming Sancre Tor is finally out of development! :lol:

 

At long last Blade Fans RST is complete and ready for release. Tonight Beta Testing closed officially and I've pack the project off to Arthmoor of OC fame for pre-release cleaning. Looks good for public release this weekend. Exciting times!

 



So where is she now?


Feedback from testers has been very good overall, so I'm eager to see what the community thinks. I'm sure most folks thought this project would never make it after awhile, but here we are and all of you who have followed this project these last years deserve most of the credit...I'll reserve just a bit for myself and my loved ones. :P


Bit of news about release. The project will launch as soon as it comes back from cleaning. Friday (10/21) would be ideal, but we'll say a safe Saturday (10/22) for sure. For the opening release RST will launch exclusively on TES Alliance. This is predominantly for ease of updating in the beginning, it's just easier to manage such large files on my own servers.


In addition, for release I will mirror the assets on www.reclaimsancretor.com for those with a slower internet connection, this mirror is less likely to time out under heavy use. Downloaders will still be required to download the .esp file from TES Alliance for now, until the pack's release stabilizes, without it the mod is useless. Once RST is more publicly stable I will branch her onto other mirror sites for download.


In addition to launching RST's release site, we'll also be unveiling her wiki. We started compiling the RST wiki two years ago, but recently, the site hosting our wiki dropped the software and our wiki was destroyed. This last month, we started a new wiki and my testers have been volunteering their time to rebuild what was lost. At release, the wiki will still be vastly a WIP, but we're endeavoring to have the F.A.Q. from the walkthrough completed to assist players.


After RST's release, I will be wrapping up this year's Halloween Challenge on TESA and then preparing for Skyrim. This site will be receiving an overhaul as well, with RST on her own two feet it's time to turn this site toward my next project, Winterfell & Godswood for Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. In between that, I will be working with voice actors on completing the voice work for RST's second release candidate which is planned to be fully voiced and overhauling TESA, so busy winter ahead for DarkRider.


Cheers for now,

Rider

17.June.2011 Follow the Forum

Posted by DarkRider on June 17, 2011 at 9:26 PM Comments comments (0)

Hail and Fair Greeting Blades Fans!

This will probably be my last Dimension post until after RC1 of Reclaiming Sancre Tor goes live for download. As the days remaining grow fewer now and the pieces of the project fall into place gathering steam toward release I am finding myself painfully short on time, and one of the first things cut was regular updating for the project as it's so time consuming to put together the update material and update threads across three sites including this one. Of course that's not entirely fair to you loyal Blades fans out there who watch for regular updates and pray the project is going well despite the silence.


To counter that I have started the Quickfire Updates thread in the official RST Project Forum on TESA where I will regularly post some short blurb about what I'm doing on RST that day and where the project is at to keep things fresh for those of you who follow the progress routinely. Large thread updates will be few and far between now until after release.

I'll see you on the boards in the meantime my friends, getting close now. :)

Happy Modding

DarkRider

 


24.February.2011: Hello? DarkRider?

Posted by DarkRider on February 24, 2011 at 6:16 PM Comments comments (6)

Hail and Fair Greetings Blades Fans!

It's well passed time for another update here about the Dimension, so much has happened in the last few months there's so much to catch up on, but so little time to spare, so this will be brief. It seems that every time things get quiet on the RST front some loyal one of you is there to give me a nudge about updating. I'm grateful for your steady watch as it's easy for me to devote all my free time to the project and completely forget to update on progress. So let's start with, yes Blades fans, I'm still here and still making sure and steady progress on RST. :)


As you all know, the new year started off with a bang when Bethesda announced the release date for Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim! (If you haven't caught the Official trailer, catch it on the homepage here :D) While it was an exciting and drool worthy announcement to be sure, it has caused quite a few modders to reevaluate whether or not current projects will be finished in time to release before Skyrim snatches up most of the community focus. I've known a few folks to have put the brakes on their [WIPz] mods. Never fear though, RST will be completed as planned, and I am feeling pretty confident these days that it will be long before Skyrim's release.


Are those eyes in the dark...?


So where is the project now?


In December, the testing on RST was stalled by a particularly nasty Script/AI bug that stopped testers from making any further progress through RST's main quest. Some testers occupied the dead time testing a couple sidequests, but my work was focused on tracking the bug. After completely reworking the troubled NPC's Script and AI, I finally squashed the bug, though the real cause was never made apparent. Testing began again on version 0.0.6 and so far, it's performed with flying colors. I've made several fixes this week and hope to be releasing 0.0.7 to the testers soon. The current tester reported gameplay hours clock at about 20 and they are about halfway through.


The section of RST we just tested was the most complex and took the most time to test. This next section has fewer NPCs involved, it's mostly dungeon crawling, so the progress should go much faster once we hit 0.0.7. This last version (0.0.6) has been the release quality version for the first half, our focus will be forward now of that point. There are still some issues to be ironed out in the second half, the boss battles in each of the major dungeons are still quite buggy. I will be working on resolving those bugs ahead of testers. This week I am working on improving the second dungeon crawl quest sequence while they test through the first. A few pieces of that sequence were removed ages ago and I've been putting them back in because in testing I've found without those elements the whole sequence is uncharacteristically short for RST.


It is my goal to finish and turn over version 0.0.7 next week, using this week to plow through a to-do list of bugs, tweaks, fixes, and adjustments before the testers can head through to the second dungeon with few errors. There's a lot on this list, since there are some aesthetic changes around Sancre Tor added to it recently, but I'm optimistic. 


Hopefully the next update will be along sooner than this last one. One of you must nudge me after a month at the latest if nothing's been posted. Don't wait four months. :P


Cheers, and Happy Modding

DarkRider

26.November.2010: Blades in Beta

Posted by DarkRider on November 26, 2010 at 8:11 PM Comments comments (2)

Hail and Fair Greetings Blades Fans,


Looks like the old project log here is overdue for another update before those wild "RST is DEAD" rumors start spreading again. For those of you who don't know, Ladyflcn has safely delivered BabyflcnRider into the world and we have a beautiful baby daughter who makes every day more joyfully chaotic. The first weeks following the baby's arrival stalled my work a bit as my online time was reduced to checking email in the morning then juggling baby duties. Four weeks later, we now have a solid routine in place and I'm able to spend quite a bit of quality time with my various projects here in the virtual world and still meet my family's needs. :)


So where is RST now?



The project is currently in Beta testing which means it's soooo close to being released we can all taste it. So far, none of the bugs have been major mostly knee jerk hiccups in AI and quest conditioning. A few tweaks are typically enough to get things smoothed out and running again. The testers are enjoying their campaigning through RST's world and the feedback has all been quite positive.I wish I could give a release estimate or even a goal but at this point I think I'm going to quit trying to target a date, it just lets you guys down when one passes and I can't say how long it will take to complete testing and get the release candidate open to the public.


We will continue working hard, what free time I have is committed to RST on a daily basis working toward release. There are some issues ahead yet with the boss battles I need to sort out before my testers get that far but I'm repairing bugs as they are reported and the whole project is really coming together nicely. The enthusiasm and hard work RST's testers have devoted have really done a lot for the project's progress, I think it will be sooner rather than later that the project releases. :)


That's it for this update, keep checking back for more news as we go!


Happy Modding

DarkRider

29.September.2010: Scooby Doo! Where are you?!

Posted by DarkRider on September 29, 2010 at 4:27 PM Comments comments (3)

Hail and Fair Greetings Blades Fans,


Not that I have any spare time to spend these days, but I thought I'd strangle out a few candid minutes to update the project log here. I'm sure by now many of you have discovered the project threads around the community are all closed; maybe no one noticed... At any rate, the reason for the thread closure was two fold, 1) I was feeling immensely pressured by the progress bar and the recent lack of progress 2) I am going to be reopening new threads once BETA begins.


The project should have been in BETA several weeks now by my schedule, but what I have learned is that babies, pregnant wives, and extremely giddy grandparents to be have no respect for the schedules of men. The same organization and scheduling that brought the project this far is basically useless now. I might plan to work 40+ hours a week in the CS and I'm lucky if I can manage 5 uninterrupted hours in that stretch. It's incredibly frustrating and I'm finding myself struggling to find my footing in this new flow of life surging around me.


What I can say with certainty is that RST will be finished, but i honestly have no idea when. My BETA testers and voice actors are all committed and on standby and I'm doing all I can to get the project to them asap. The release goal has been pushed forward at least a small bit due to the Halloween Challenge on TESA, provided RST is ready to release then (Nov 2nd), I would like to wait until the polls close for the challenge on November 8th before hosting another major release.




So where is the project now?


Currently I am polishing the boss battles and trying to iron out the kinks in AI and the quests; essentially finishing Alpha testing/fixing. Before I send the project to BETA I want to make sure it's playable through from beginning to end so they don't get stuck anywhere while trying to test it. If I could manage the free time it's probably only a few days of work, but getting that time is the challenge facing the project. Unfortunately there is no solution except perseverance and patience. I promise to keep at it if you all promise to not give up on me. :lol:


This weekend promises to be good for the project, the Halloween Challengers on TESA should be settled to their task and things should be quiet on the home front so I may get a good portion polished up. I will update again when I've made more progress.


Happy Modding

DarkRider

16.August.2010: Beginning Beta Sequence...

Posted by DarkRider on August 16, 2010 at 4:47 AM Comments comments (3)

Hail and Fair Greetings Blades Fans!


It's been a busy busy time these last few weeks. TES Alliance had a fairly significant software update that resurrected bugs we'd already squashed, and I had to spend some time re-stabilizing the site. It's primary theme is stable now at least so I've turned my attention back to modding and left the site ride it out for awhile. Things have been equally busy around the home front, seems there's a lot to do to get ready for a baby. Already this baby is more spoiled than any other in the history of...well, babies. :)


There have been some aesthetic changes around the Dimension here, I hope you all enjoy the new digs, I thought it was time to refresh things around here and kick off this exciting time properly!


But enough chit chat, onto RST!




Today marks the arrival of RST's current Beta goal. Due to some unforeseen issues cropping up this past week (mainly honey-do lists from the pregnant Ladyflcn) we are not going to Beta right on the dot. That's the bad news, so it's safe to breathe now. The good news is that we should be able to begin Beta testing this week at some point. To compensate for the delay, I've shifted one of our buffer weeks to this week so we won't lose any ground on the road to release. There are Boss battles to be meted out yet and some loose ends still outsourced, like the second to last dungeon WhoGuru is working on and a few models here or there being tackled by Windmill Tilter and others. Once all the pieces of the puzzle come together for the most part we'll go ahead and start Beta Testing.


There will be seven Beta testers working on RST, since it's such a massive quest line and involves a little bit of everything modding has to offer, I wanted to get a fairly broad and diverse group of testers without making the Beta public. This week testers will be posting their character specs and I will be sending them instructions on how the testing process will work for RST. There will be a few updates throughout testing as things are fixed, polished, or finished up, and testers will keep testing and retesting to make sure everything runs as smooth as possible for release.


As the Beta testers are testing, I will be handing out scripts to voice actors. Alpha Tester Lilith was kind enough to export and organize the first half of the scripts for RST, amounting to around 1000 lines of dialogue. She will begin sorting out the second half right around the time the mod goes to Beta.


There are several new pics from my recent RST adventures in the image gallery here on the Dimension since I promised new images for this update. The final video is not yet completed, as I'm having to re-film some stuff I finished due to the enhancement in graphics on the new rig, looks a bit silly cut in with the old shots in the video. :P


I will post a brief announcement when the mod actually goes to Beta testing. It will be soon though so we are through the bulk of the mod's development, just a few short weeks left to go. As always your comments are welcome, I am very grateful for the support of all of you as well as the support of my friends pitching in to finish the project. Couldn't ask for a grander group of folks.


Happy Modding,

DarkRider



31.May.2010: Murphey's Law

Posted by DarkRider on June 1, 2010 at 12:20 AM Comments comments (1)

Hail and Unhappy Tidings Blades Fans,

Not sure I have the heart to retype the whole thing so I will copy my post from the project threads.


"I can't believe this is happening again, but I think I almost have a definitive answer to the question "How much modding can a low-mid level rig take before it has a nervous breakdown?"   Some of you recall my graphics card pulling a stunt last autumn where the project's future seemed uncertain. After pulling together some meager funds I was able to buy a replacement card that, while not even as good as my old card, was at least stable for a time. Unfortunately, the graphics anomalies have returned, the curious can see the in game images here: CLICKY


This time, unfortunately the trouble seems more wide spread the rig is getting choppy and unpredictable, sometimes stalling. The graphics anomalies in game are also in the CS and on many web pages too. This may be the beginning of the end of my rig and I'm not certain what will happen to RST. 


Currently the project is about 600MB uncompressed. I have uploaded it to TESA's database and also on my 4shared account to protect it where it stands now. As long as I can continue, I will work on the mod until the graphics issues wipe out the whole render window, backing up progress daily. I hope to make my BETA deadline of June 16th but testing has gotten more interesting with a grey screen in spots, so it may set me back a bit. BETA testers are ready to go, BETA forum is set up, this is a really bad BAD time for my rig to pull it's "Waaaa, I'm old, I don't like Oblivion" shenanigans. 

Of course, with a baby on the way in 4.5 months, there's no way I can replace my tower right now, an extra $700 for a stable sturdy rig would be nice. If it goes tomorrow...I'll play the lotto. Seriously though, I will do everything in my power to finish this project. Your good thoughts would be most welcome now my good Blades.


I will keep you posted with any developments on the situation good...or bad."

 

So, that's the news in a nutshell, I'm back in the pot. I can't express how utterly unfair this feels, being so close to seeing RST realized after the years of sacrifice I have put into her. I refuse to accept that there is nothing to be done, I will try to find the funds to at least try another graphics card, though that may be only part of the problem seeing how this card isn't very old. I fear it's just wear and tear from so much dedicated work with high powered programs on a very modest pc. We'll see what happens, in the meantime, I'm off to the CS to press on. Good thoughts gang!


Happy Modding

DarkRider


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