State of Playfire - September 7, 2012







Hi Firestarters,
From now on we'll be posting status updates on technical changes roughly every two weeks, so that everyone knows what we're working on in terms of features, bug fixes and game tracking.
Game Page and Game Collection Progress 
We’re putting the finishing touches to ‘stage one’ of game pages, which involves some design changes and the ability for users to upload a bit more information on the page itself. We’ll be explaining this more in a blog post next week.
These changes also incorporate the game buzz into game pages rather than having them in a separate area, which is an important step in making game pages a useful and interesting places to visit.
The first changes will be rolled out early next week, they’ll unofficially be in ‘beta’ so expect some errors and problems with them while we test the code out and get feedback from the community. Remember, this is only the first stage of changes to the pages.
Game Tracking
We’re aware of continued issues with game tracking that is affecting users. At the level of tracking Playfire operates, small changes to the code on XBL and PSN can create big problems for the tracking system, which means we need to identify them, then make the changes on Playfire.
We’re continuing to track problems, and we’re currently looking at ways to manage the tracking system that make sense, including bringing on additional team members with dedicated experience.  We’re also looking at some interim solutions, including a refresh button for users, and a better way for users to report the issues.
In the meantime, you can sometimes force the site to track your titles again by editing your gamertag, saving, and then entering the tag in again. This fix works for some users suffering from a specific problem with tracking.
Please note that the site moderators have no power over the tracking system and cannot help fix any tracking problems. We appreciate these problems are frustrating but abuse against moderators and other site members will not be tolerated.
500 Errors and Site Slowdown
Our achievement server went down last weekend for around 18 hours, which dragged the rest of the site down with it. These things happen sometimes - unfortunately this happened on Sunday, and we fixed it as soon as we arrived in the office.
We’ve set up the server now so that any further downtime that persists for more than 20 minutes will automatically call a member of the team who can investigate the issue more quickly outside of our regular office hours, we already had this set up on most of the other servers.
Forum Feedback and Changes
Following user feedback on the forums, we’ve made some changes to the rules. Importantly, we’re now allowing more different types of gaming threads that would have previously been locked and directed to the buzz feed.
We’ve also marked some ‘Official Threads’ to make it easier for users to find their way to discussions on a particular game or topic and tweaked our moderation policy when it comes to locking threads.
Although the site takes priority over the forums, we do have a few things planned, including a more comprehensive search function, and some additional tabs that will separate gaming from non-gaming topics. 
Other Changes­­­
Alongside our major game pages work, we’ve also got plans to iron out some smaller issues that have been reported by the site.
Right now, we’re looking into the “No achievement exists” error, which affects a very small amount of user profiles, and we’re also going to be working on some buzz notification changes that will mean less notifications when you post on the buzz feed.
We’re also working on a buzz reporting system, which should be live in the next week.
Community News
Playfire moderator ADay has done another fine job with the community news, which you can readover on the forum.
Don’t forget that the Eurogamer meet-up this month, and you can check out the thread right here.
- Wayward & The Playfire Team