TR Skype Meeting Summaries

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Post by Gnomey »

Ha, I love the very frank wording of this summary. Thanks for tossing this together. Some of the people who read the summary might notice that a few of the ideas have come up before, but that's the nature of discussion; especially TR discussions.
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Post by klep »

Thanks for the easy-to-read summary. I had expected the meeting to cover slightly different topics, but I guess these are all part of characterising Morrowind in the end.
I'm not going to write a massive wall of text on it right now, but I will say that I disagree with much of it. In fact, almost everything. However, as the summary serves as food for thought, I do think it's good that some of these topics have been brought up and I will definitely keep them in mind to discuss when the time is right.
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Post by Theminimanx »

The meeting of Saturday, August 8, 2015 started off like any good TR meeting; with silence, typing and an in-depth discussion on the topic of chips. Have fun figuring out what kind :v

After about 10 minutes of this, we finally got on-topic. This allowed 10Kaziem to share her thoughts on [url=]the pipeline[/url], before she was sadly kidnapped by Real Life.

1. The proposed installer would result in both technical and potential legal issues. However, since such an installer would not be made for a long time, there's no need to worry about it for now.
2. TR is a derivative work. In other words, it's in a legal grey area. Because of that, we have a very loose claim on what we're making, and Bethesda could shut us down any time they wanted to. Therefore, we have to establish some rules on copyright. Most of the proposed rules are already in the pipeline document, but it would be useful to post a summary in a visible location.
3. Some sort of to-do list could be made. This would help people stay up-to-date on what needs doing, and would be especially useful for newcomers. It would not replace claims, but would be used for other parts of the project. Software for this is available, and a TR account could be made. It might be useful to have various permission levels within the software.
4. The current pipeline proposes that we do all of the planning before we start creating any content. This could be modified slightly. While we'd still write the Master Plan first, individual sections could be developed out of sync. So while we're still working out the details of one section, another section could already have exteriors being worked on. This would avoid a 'You can't create quests because we need you to plan stuff' situation, and would allow people to do what they love. Continuous CS work would also give the project more exposure. Plus, working in sections gives more focus to the project, and allows us to get stuff done faster.

After discussing this feedback, we started discussing the pipeline step by step. This mostly involved restating what the various steps would involve, so everyone was on the same page.

Step 1. The master plan is a single document that will contain a rough summary of what all the other documents will have in more detail. The master plan is not the only document of Step 1 however; the various faction documents would also be written during this step.

Step 2. At this point, we'd start planning the specific regions, as well as writing the actual questlines. It's important to note that that does not happen during step 1. The locations would be tailored to the various characters and stories. For instance, the main faction quests would be written before we start planning the regions, so that we know what each region needs to contain. The same applies to towns and houses reflecting their inhabitants, and regions reflecting their cultures.
It's also imporant to mention that although concept art creation is stated to be part of this step, it's welcome during all stages of development. Concept art can be used both during the broad design planning (atmospheric art for example) and while planning specific assets (drawing a specific hat) [url=]Michael Kirkbride's art[/url] provides good examples of concept art from all over the spectrum.
We also mentioned that we should at some point figure out how we're going to handle artifacts.

Step 3. This step is purely for the creation of assets; they would have been designed during step 2. We'll still create assets region by region. Because of this, we don't need, say, the Dres set to start working in Redoran lands. Anyone can contribute during this step; no showcase is necessary. Similarly, anyone can give their opinion on anything. We do need to update our guidelines for the various assets however, and it should be done sooner rather than later.

Step 4. As stated in the pipeline, this is just the preparation for CS work, and shouldn't take very long. During this step, we'll also create example plugins for the various regions. This will help make them look internally consistent.

Step 5. At this point, we'll know what we want to create in the various areas, and can therefore decide how large the claims should be. It's important to note that at this point, planning for areas and their inhabitants will already have been done, and all that remains is implementation. Clear guidelines will be given for the creation for the claims, but they are flexible. This, coupled with how the implementation of NPC's will only happen after the interiors are created, will mean that the creators still have some freedom in how they design their areas. Any ideas they come up with during creation can still be used. Really important characters will of course have stricter guidelines.

Step 6. Once again, this step is purely for implementation. All the quests will have been planned and written beforehand. That said, miscellaneous questlines can still be proposed. Major questlines will only begin implementation once all the required sections are finished.

Step 7. Support would continue for as long as people are willing. This would include bugfixes and possibly new quests.

Some non-pipeline topics that were discussed:
Some minor work would be set aside for showcases, such as small interiors and miscellaneous quests. People are of course free to design their own miscellaneous quest for their showcase.
There was some talk about the on-going Forum Cleanup Process, but more up-to-date information is available in [url=]its own thread.[/url]
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Post by Theminimanx »

This is a summary of the Skype meeting that took place on Saturday; August 15, 2015. We were supposed to further discuss [url=]the pipeline[/url], but that ended up not working out that well. Mostly we just rambled a bit.

A returning topic this week was the [url=]site restructure[/url]. The progress on that can be best followed in its own thread, but I'll list a few of the decisions we made for the sake of the log. First, we decided that we should really repost the modding tutorials in a visible place at some point. For now, they can be linked through a sticky. We also decided to leave the section stickies alone for now, since they're not that bad.

We did briefly manage to discuss the topic of the pipeline. The only real decision we made was about our 90-day release schedule, and how TR_Data would fit into that. To avoid confusion, TR_Data will be updated shortly before each release of TR_Preview.

And now, back to your regularly scheduled random topics.

Since the Hlaalu-Thirr section has seen very little activity, we've decided to close it for now, to focus on Indoril-Thirr and Old Ebonheart.
At some point we should really discuss Swiftoak's new names. He's been changing a lot of names in his map, but nobody seems to know if we're actually going to use them.
At some point we should really open communications with the OpenMW team, both for the sake of giving feedback on their CS, and so we can hopefully have some input on what features get added post-1.0.
A thread should be made about how much of our old work we're willing to redo for the sake of our new pipeline.
We attempted to start the new Master Plan, but that didn't get very far. Making a (semi-)publically accessible document was suggested, which would hopefully make people less afraid of contributing to the document.

In the end, we decided to wait for a while before we continue discussing the pipeline. An updated version is being written which will take the feedback into account. From there, we can figure out how much work it still needs.
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Post by Theminimanx »

This is a summary of the Skype meeting that took place on Saturday, August 22, 2015, where we discussed some minor details of the [url=]pipeline[/url]. For the most part everyone seemed satisfied with the pipeline, so no major changes were made. As for the decisions that were made:

We are not starting from scratch. Furthermore, any content we decide to redo will have a lower priority than making new content, especially when it comes to finishing the landmass.

Anonytroll proposed that we could make a sort of 'bounty hunt' for the creation of self-contained content. People from outside the TR community could be asked to create assets, or even redesign certain areas, such as cities. If we like what they come up with, we use it in TR.

Books that will be found all over the place should be written first. After that, we can write some niche books. For this, we will need a list of books we want.
The creation of new books can also be done outside the TR community in the 'bounty hunt' system described above.
Also, books from other games/sites can also potentially be used in TR. If you like one, post it on the forums. Obviously, the need to have a purpose in the game/story.

Some minor interiors could be set aside for showcases. This would make sure that people don't feel like they're wasting their time making a showcase.
Something similar could be done with caves. Since they don't need to be planned in as much detail, we could even put up claims for them before the exterior is finished.

There should be style guides for the various types of environments/interiors. They're not super strict, and deviations are allowed. However, these should be intentional, and should probably be discussed before you make them.

Once we've finished a section, we put it in TR_Mainland and turn that into a release. Larger announcements can be made when significant areas are done, similar to [url=]the old system[/url].
We would need someone to actually make those announcements/be a general PR person.
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Post by Theminimanx »

This is a summary of the Skype meeting that took place on Saturday, August 29, 2015, where we started discussing the Master Plan. We didn't discuss the actual content yet, but we did list some things that should also be covered in the Master Plan:

Shops should have a purpose in towns, instead of merely being filler. Presumably, this idea would extend to settlement demographics in general.

Magical items such as Barilzar's Mazed Band and the propylon indexes are also forms of fast-travel, and should be discussed during this section.
The Mages Guild network should also be figured out during this phase.
It's interesting to note that the Vanilla fast travel routes make logical sense. There's usually some flat terrain for Silt Striders to move over between two fast-travel locations.

Faction and race tropes should be figured out during this phase. Lampshading these tropes could be done, especially in the case of race tropes. But it should be limited. After all, it's not a trend if everyone's an exception.

It might be useful to go through [url=]UESP's Morrowind page[/url] to find other things worth discussing in the Master Plan.

For many of these topics, it's encouraged to start the discussion on the forums, to give people time to flesh out their ideas. The skype meetings will mainly be a tool for speeding up decision-making.

And now, some rambling:
Figure out our approach to prisons, especially in areas where the Empire has little influence.
Get rid of the Inner Sea region, and replace it with extensions of the Vvardenfell/Mainland regions. There isn't enough time to transition to the Inner Sea weather before you reach the shore anyway.
The Velothi underclass is rather marginalised, which might be worth exploring.
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Post by Theminimanx »

The Skype meeting of Saturday, September 5, 2015 was once again on the topic of the [url=]Master Plan.[/url] Since we have an online version where people can see the changes as they're made, we decided to forgo taking notes for a summary. Instead, we just edited the document during the meeting. Because of this, there won't be a summary for this meeting, as you can see the results for yourself. The same will probably apply to future meetings where we discuss planning documents. I'll only be using this post to list what parts of the Master Plan were discussed during what week, for the sake of the log.

Saturday, September 5, 2015: Introduction
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Post by Gnomey »

I've finally gotten around to updating the Master Plan with the content discussed in last week's meeting on Level Design. The notes are still rather messy and long-winded, though. Theminimanx had also updated the What is Morrowind section and Swiftoak has added his notes to the document as well.

In general, as properly discussing the Master Plan would take more time and effort than, I think, most are currently willing or able to devote to it, the plan is to devote a Skype meeting to each section of the Master Plan and fill the document with rough notes, which can then be processed into a more readable form at leisure afterwards. Discussion of the notes is very much encouraged; so that the Master Plan can act as an effective foundation for the project, making adjustments to it after it is written out would be less than ideal, though still better than having a sub-par foundation for the project. The more thoroughly the ideas in the Master Plan are discussed, the more thought-through and enduring they will prove to be.
Until the Master Plan is written out, the notes will at least serve as a rough foundation for the project, and will hopefully take away some of the pressure to complete the plan as soon as possible, so that we can instead ensure that the plan is as solid as possible.
I'm personally in favour of the [url=]Master Plan[/url] thread serving as a general thread for discussion the Master Plan, though specific topics might better be discussed in their own threads. If the thread becomes too cluttered, posts can always be split off into new topics.
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Post by Gnomey »

This is the Skype Summary for the meeting of November 14, 2015.

The main topic of the meeting was the Thirr River Valley.

Themes of the Region: basically got covered discussing my proposal for the region in [url=]this thread[/url], the consensus of the meeting appearing to be to go ahead with that concept.

Exterior Changes: generally, nobody seemed to want to make extreme changes to the region. A few changes were discussed, however:
-giving the TRV a different colour palette, specifically the vegetation including landscape textures but probably not the rocks, to make it a little more alien and differentiated from the Ascadian Isles. Specifically a green-orange palette.
-in general improving the NDIB tree textures to make them look more at home in Morrowind. (The leaf textures look a bit too solid, for instance, and the trunk appears to lack vertex shading).
-possibly tweaking the models of the NDIB trees, for example giving them corkbulb-like growths on the trunk, trying to cut down on polygons maybe by removing some of the leaves at the top.
-possibly adding or replacing old vegetation with new vegetation models.
-possibly add a few trees nearer but not right next to Old Ebonheart, for example on the grassy ridge to the southeast or near the infirmary.

A concept art thread [url=]has been created[/url] to discuss the visuals of the Thirr.

Name Changes: We decided to keep Dondril as a name. Discussions on Old Ebonheart and the Thirr River Valley as names were a little more involved:

-Thirr River Valley is clunky and a bit generic, considering that the Thirr extends past the TRV. Fields of Thirr was judged a bit too inaccurate visually, and also conceptually, considering our adjusted concept for the region. Generally we are considering less alien names, in the vein of Ascadian Isles, rather than more Dunmer names, like Molag Amur; the TRV is a very important region with Imperial presence, so a less obscure name seems to make more sense. (Compare Red Mountain Region as opposed to Dagoth Ur, and most of the rest of the Vvardenfell regions for that matter).
The best suggestions that came up in the meeting were Lower Thirr/Middle Thirr. Middle Thirr would be an older name, serving as a memory of the time before the Inner Sea was created when the Thirr was twice as long and the TRV was located midway down the river, whereas Lower Thirr would be a newer name reflecting the region's current location on the Thirr.

-changing the name of Vvardenfell's Ebonheart would cause a number of problems both for us implementing the changes and for mods altering the settlement. This is one situation where the difficulties of implementation outweigh the relatively minor rewards. If we want to resolve the weirdness of the Ebonheart/Old Ebonheart naming, as such, it is probably best done on Old Ebonheart's end, either through explaining why Old Ebonheart would be called 'old' despite being the larger and more thriving settlement, (why would the locals start calling it Old Ebonheart just because some castle was built on a rock on Vvardenfell?), or through renaming Old Ebonheart.
For the former, the suggestions were in the vein of the Vvardenfell Ebonheart being called Ebonheart due to an administrative error and the Imperials not bothering to fix it.
For the latter, ideas that were tossed around were Greater Ebonheart/Grand Ebonheart, Xanth Ebonheart to Vvardenfell's Yscaadia Ebonheart which would only be called so in dialogue or books if ever (the Xanth Wyrm being the name that at one point was applied to [url=]Ebonheart's sigil[/url] and Yscaadia being the probably random name Swiftoak assigned Vvardenfell's Ebonheart on some versions of his map) and Ebonheart on the Thirr (reflecting how the two Frankfurts in Germany are differentiated; Frankfurt an der Oder and Frankfurt am Main).

The other settlement names in the TRV all look fine, though naturally all names are open for further discussion in the [url=]New Name Dedefecation[/url] thread.

Major Characters: these will mostly be dealt with in separate documents, specifically the faction documents. Ilvi for House Indoril, Oran for House Hlaalu, the Majordomo of Almas Thirr for the Temple and a lot of important Imperials holed up in Old Ebonheart and trying hard not to be pulled into local politics.

Dialogue and Quest Reviews: while one of the Dondril quests may need to be slightly adjusted (the escaped guar running amok in the fields outside of Dondril; the guar pen it escaped from has become the Velk pen of Felms Ithul), in general the Dondril quests work better for the updated concept of the TRV than they did for the old one. Everyone in the meeting seemed to agree that the dialogue is developing in the right direction.

Aside from that, we discussed a few misc topics. I'll edit those in soon.
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Post by Ironed Maidens »

Sorry, I've had a really busy RL week. I did want to ask, however, if any of my dialogue for Roa Dyr was discussed and what I may need to change in it?
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Post by Yeti »

I've been meaning to reply to your Roa Dyr dialouge Ironed Maidens, and I will endeavor to find time to do so in the coming days. It didn't come up in the meeting, though - which was a bit of an oversight on our part.
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Post by Gnomey »

Rough notes of today's Skype meeting can be read here (third and fourth pages): ... edit?pli=1

The notes include a plan (yes, another one) on how to more quickly and effectively get summaries onto the forums, essentially be treating them like open claims. I'll be posting the thread which will contain the Skype recordings and will be used as the basis for writing the summaries tomorrow.
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Post by Not »

Also, please take a look at [url=]this[/url] thread and leave your thoughts on a (potential) new plan to handle claims.

Also, I feel I should mention that after I get some sleep, I'm going to bring up Anonytroll's new web design and try to get a forum discussion going on that as well. I think it's important everyone knows now what's happening with the possible plans to reorganize the claims and phase out our horribly outdated system.
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Post by Seneca37 »

Skype Meeting Summary Notes for December 05 2015

Recording starts mid-conversation

Rift Pass could be transformed into a normal Dunmer stronghold – maybe with shrine to St. Felms.

NOTE: Need to fix Passes in TR_Preview (Passes are not labeled properly)

Historical Events

Veloth's Route. This is primarily a straight line from west to east. Ending in the Necrom area, where Veloth then continues off to the east.

Need “Pilgrims Pathâ€Â￾ for Mainland. Need to figure out later where the shrines will be.

History of Old Ebonheart.
See book TR_bk_HistoryEbon_gro “The Ebon Heart of Morrowind: A Historyâ€Â￾ by Qualia Tarvix.
Sewer system (TR_i3-591-Imp) currently has Liche Gate, Hall of Kings Pass, Katariah Tomb.
May want to add a shrine/temple to Lokhan (aka Shezarr) in Ebonheart. It should be in the Old Mournhold Style. Possibly an ancestral tomb to the Raathim (Ra'athim) – the royal family of Morrowind.

Raathim family were a Great House but then elevated to a position of power. Imperial propaganda elevated the family to its “Royalâ€Â￾ status.

Would the Raathim have a separate ancestor tomb?
Do we want 2 ancestor shrines under Old Ebonheart?
Shrine to Lokhan should be under Old Ebonheart Castle.
Should it be a known location or should there be a door? Maybe the Archaeological Society could be looking for it.

What exactly was the settlement at the site of Old Ebonheart?
Was it a city or just a castle estate (the Raathim Family)? A really prominent family held a lot of land. The castle estate was burnt to the ground. The Raathim clan had relations with Indoril and Hlaalu. After the mass suicide, the Indoril side died out and the Hlaalu side of the family came into power. The Hlaalu side of the family gave the estate grounds to the Empire. The estate was huge.

Possible ways to show the estate ruins.
1. Raathim estate somewhere else
2. Make temple of Lokhan ruin larger (top = castle estate ruins, below = Lokhan shrine)
3. Maybe scatter ruins around the area

OE Grotto Claim? Could link to Raathim Family Shrine, or a Dunmer Stronghold, or Old Mourhold ruin.

Events leading up to the Armistice:
Was there an Imperial invasion? Or the destruction was caused by inter-house conflict?

Issue: How did Hlaalu come to control “Watersmarch?â€Â￾
- A lot of the land fell to house Hlaalu.
- If there was an Imperial invasion, the Hlaalu let the Imperials into Morrowind. Or the Armistice gave the land to House Hlaalu. For the Hlaalu support, the Imperials gave the land to them.
- Maybe House Redoran was in a bad state at the time.

Architectural History
Chimer people first lived in caves, along mountains. Shrines in mountains. Ashlander / Ancestral Burial sites. Built Velothi Towers. Then moved to plains and built Velothi Strongholds (aka Dunmer Strongholds?).

Velothi Towers are the oldest buildings.
Possibly these towers were Academies or Places of Scholarship, devoted to the old ways of Veloth.
Places of learning. Or just the first building built by the “Chimerâ€Â￾, for communal groups.

Possibly the towns around Necrom were originally Velothi towers. As the settlements grew, the towers were taken down or maybe they are in ruins under the towns. May just want to add some dialog about this, or books. Could possibly add towers as trade houses.

Dreshaan Plains building = Dunmer Stronghold style.

Propylon Chambers:
- Messenger system for the clans that controlled the strongholds.
- Only one Propylon Index due to game-play.

Dunmer Strongholds:
-Military Posts and or Layover posts
-Should be some strongholds on the western coast of the Inner Sea.
-Not really good for transporting troups.

From "Before the Ages of Man" (OBLIVION BOOK)
-Velothi high culture also disappeared on the mainland as well.
- Strongholds built until the war with the Nord.
- Dres continued to build strongholds in their own style.

After Dunmer strongholds, then moved to Velothi towns or Bugshell, Ashlander camps.

Velothi Towers, expect to find the old mournhold ruins, in more of a temple style. The temple style ruins will be used for shrines to the ancestors, as apposed the daedric ruins which were used for worshiping Daedra.

Misc Topics

Drakehold: Because we are putting off changes to Mainland until the end, any changes will be done much much later. Eastern forts were abandoned by the Imperial. Undead may or may not remain here.

Travel Plug-in: Adding dialog. Dialog can be copied/pasted. The dialog can be fixed later. Maps are ready. Plug-in will be a separate esp file, included in the main download files. The stiltstrider port in Bal Oyra was deleted.
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Post by Rats »

Concerning the Raathim ancestral tomb.

I meant that the three OM tileset interiors would be the tomb. As in "Raathim Ancestral Tomb, Lichgate", "Raathim Ancestral Tomb, Hall of Kings Past", & "Raathim Ancestral Tomb, Burial of the Empress". The "Raathim Ancestral Tomb, Hall of Kings Past" cell has burial urns for dead Raathim clan members such as Moraelyn, Cruethys, Theranis, etc. etc. Katariah was the last person to be buried there before the tomb was hidden/forgotten.