Hello everyone. In order to maintain transparency and continue our initiative to keep communication on the up and up, we have some important updates about the Creators.TF project that we would like to share with you all today. This post is a bit lengthy, so if you want a summary, please note the bolded sections of each paragraph.
A Change Of Leadership And Staff Structure
First thing on the agenda, Nanochip, our project lead, unfortunately had to step away from the project indefinitely due to a medical emergency in his family. We thank him for his contributions to the project and wish him and his family the very best.
That being said, to continue to facilitate the management of Creators.TF, the position of project lead has been split in two: Sappho and Retr0, two members of our staff, will be working together to take up the role. In the long term, this doesn't mean much - the project will continue as normal and updates will continue to come out when they’re ready. In the short term however, it means that we’ve had to change some things behind the scenes. Of those things, one of the most important is a new division of labor among the Creators.TF staff. A more organised hierarchical structure will facilitate internal communications and lead to a much smoother release schedule.
Developer Blogs: Creators Corner
Related to the above is the announcement of our new devblog, Creators Corner, wherein we will be detailing and documenting the code-wrangling going on behind the scenes and giving insight to work-in-progress updates as they’re passing through the developmental pipeline.
Our first issue will contain some information about our in-development custom weapons, recent balance changes to the Hypodermic Injector, and a look into our Continuous Integration system on our backend. Our Patrons will be receiving an early preview of these developer blogs, but they will be released publicly after a period of time. Keep an eye out for this post coming in the next few weeks.
Transparency And Project Finance
Continuing on with the topic of communication comes something that’s been in the works for quite a while: financial organisation and transparency. When a project grows to a certain size, it no longer becomes sensible or viable to manage it’s funding through personal accounts. There were quite a few options to take, but we have decided to bite the bullet and do things officially.
This is why we are today announcing that Creators.TF has officially been registered as a non-profit Limited By Guarantee Company in the UK.
Companies Limited By Guarantee are widely used for charities, community projects, clubs, societies and other similar bodies. Most guarantee companies are not-for-profit companies - that is, they do not distribute their profits to their members but either retain them within the company or use them for some other purpose.
Being a Limited By Guarantee Company means that Creators.TF is now itself a legal entity, able to apply for business banking as well as a whole other range of benefits. Not only will this project benefit from its own banking, but organising our financial records for public scrutiny will be much simpler - so expect to see such information released soon.
The Road Ahead
The last portion of this blogpost will be focusing on the things that will have the most tangible impact on our players. For the rest of the year, we’re going to be focusing on smaller updates using our existing tools - such as new maps, cosmetics, and weapons - as opposed to developing entirely new systems.
We are committing to this as we don’t think we’ll be able to produce a large update to the same quality standard of our past events. As said previously, we have a design and release schedule in mind that should mean more substantial updates rolling out sometime next year.
Change Of Plans With Digital Directive
Finally, an important announcement regarding our Digital Directive MvM Campaign - On September 1st, we will be totally discontinuing our MvM servers. The campaign will still be playable on PotatoMVM’s Archive Servers, but will not have any of the integrated loot functionality.
This goes against our previous statement - aka, that we would “continue to host a limited amount of MvM servers indefinitely after the event”. We regret that we must make this decision, but after extensive testing, development, and optimization, it has been determined that continuing to host even a limited number of servers long-term is unfeasible for two main reasons:
- MvM servers as they currently exist are extremely taxing on machine resources - As it stands currently, MvM servers and standard servers cannot be run on the same machine/disk without the MvM ones causing lag and stability issues for the rest of the servers present on the machine. Hosting entirely separate MvM servers is possible (it is how we have handled it thus far), but even so, the amount of MvM servers that can be hosted on a machine is actually less than the number of standard servers that could be hosted with the same resources.
- Maintenance and development puts excessive strain onto existing developers - Although our partnership with PotatoMvM has been fruitful, it must be said that none of our existing developers are overly familiar with the workings of custom MvM. The Potato team has been very helpful with handling bug fixes and supporting some of the more strenuous features, but we feel it would be unfair to ask them to support this campaign indefinitely on our behalf.
We apologise to our user base for this decision, but we on the Creators.TF team feel that being honest with our players about the limits of our hardware and development capabilities is the best way to proceed. One last thing to note is this: New Zealiums and other rewards previously tied to MvM will be implemented and obtainable via other means in the future. Additionally, the entire concept of custom MvM is not permanently off the table - given enough time, we may try our hand at it again.
This concludes the prepared announcements we have for today. We thank you all for your continued support for our project, and wish you all the best going forward.