RPGVault has begun a new diary series for Ultima Online: Samurai Empire, with the first installment offering updated details about the expansion's current development state from associate producer and team lead Jessica Lewis. An excerpt:
Every day, our truly fabulous QA department is finding new bugs and the dev team is fixing and closing them. The challenge is spending the right time on the right issues. It can be difficult to know where to draw the line on polishing the game. It is very easy to get caught up in a single nuance, spend hours refining a better and better solution and then hours more to implement. What if less than one percent of the players will ever come close to encountering, much less noticing, that exact scenario? There is a time and a place for the rounding out the not so rough edges. Right now, the team needs to focus on the higher severity issues that affect more players.
Our internal playtests can also really challenge our tuning decisions. Either our tuning decisions are confirmed or sometimes flat out denied. In the latter case, we tune again and get a fix in the next build.