Friday, April 18, 2008

ItFR: Progress report card #1

This is something I’ve been wanting to do for a while now, as much to report on progress made in building Into the Forgotten Realms as to give me a sense of progression (or a kick in the butt, if I get no such sense… ;) )

So looking at the report card below, I’d say today that 65% of ItFR is currently underway, and that about 25% of the mod is pretty much complete. (The label “Needs polish” can be understood as my insecure way of saying “Completed”…)

The table gives the percentage of all assets for the mod that are completed or in various other stages of production, by the relative priority of each asset. Assets include areas, scripts, convos, creature and item blueprints, custom models, stores etc., basically all the components that make a mod. And they range in priority from companion blueprints and main quest areas (priority #1 – essential) to custom music (#4) to scoring system (#5 – nice to have, but good chance I won’t get there).

This report card is actually an Excel pivot table (I love pivot tables!*). It’s based on a worksheet I use to keep track of what’s to be done. I’m one who likes lists and categorizing things, as it helps me stay focussed and in control.

Most assets have been included in this list, but some have probably slipped by. Others have been combined (sets of scripts, custom items), since it’d be too burdensome to track them individually. Assets also vary greatly in scale, from the quick script and barkstring cycle, to the detailed area and companion convo. Assets are also being added regularly as the mod evolves.

Still, I find this system gives me a good sense of the work involved and a fair idea of where the mod is at.

* I love my wife too. And before anyone asks, yes, I love her more than pivot tables.

(Edit 28-04-08: As requested by Delak, here is the template of my tracking sheet)


Amraphael said...

Thanks for sharing this with us. It's always interesting to see how other mod builders work. I also love my wife - and tables :)

Wyrin said...

Between you and Shaugn you're putting the likes of me to shame, who still relies on scribbled notes and sketches in a battered notebook! ;) Impressive

Ernie Noa said...

I love my wife more than pivot tables too. (laugh)

Sounds like you are making great progress.

I keep lists and notes just as you've describing, but mostly at work. At home, with NWN2, I'm a bit more relaxed, although I have a wiki for Hythum development notes.

E.C.Patterson said...

Thanks guys for dropping in! Everyone has their own system that works best for them, that's for sure. Since I most often mod in 30-minute spurts spread out over the week, the list also helps me quickly pick a task I feel like doing at that time without sitting there too long wondering what I should do next. :)

I'm happy to see that those of you who have a wife love her too :). You know, we should all have them come her to read our declarations. I'm sure they'd get a kick out of them :)

SirChet said...

Thanks guys. My wife has seen these from over my shoulder and asked wheres mine?

OK here goes...I love my wife too, (hard to type with your arm twisted behind your back).

Ernie Noa said...

LOL. That's impressive progress and an entertaining thread.

E.C.Patterson said...

Thanks Ernie. I think it's great that we're all declaring our love for our wives. I'm tempted to invite other NWN2 men to come here and do so as well! Maybe I should post something on the forums... ;)

Ernie Noa said...

My wife is a saint. She puts up and encourages my modding habits, and I've recently been recovering from foot surgery. She has been truly amazing as I have healed. She's done double duty with our kids, around the house and she's done a great job tending to me.

Delak said...

It looks like you are making great progress on the module. What would be the chance of getting a hold of the Excel sheets you use. It doesn't have to have the data in them just the outline. I am always looking for new ways to help me organizes my work.

Delak said...

I also love my wife. I love her more then NWN2 and D&D in general which is saying a lot.

E.C.Patterson said...

Delak: Lol, I love my wife more than NWN2 too, but I don't doubt she sometimes questions this! ;)

I'll edit this post with a link to my table template, including the pivot table. :) Check back in a couple of days. Thanks for your interest.