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The Elsweyr Chapter and Update 22 base game patch are now available to test on the PTS! You can read the full patch notes here

A longer term suggestion for housing

When Homestead was introduced ZOS mentioned that they were concerned about its "performance" implications. Whereas I think they were purposely vague about what they meant (as always) I wondered about this.

I think players should, one day, be able to build (or "grow") their own homes as they please. We should be able to buy components from the crown store and make homes with many thousands of items.

This is how I see it working:
  • On the server there is a copy of the house pre-rendered and optimised as much as possible. This copy cannot be edited and is a multi-player instance. It is the version that guests see. By house I mean everything - interior, exterior, furnishings and decorations.
  • Also on the server there is the empty house common to everybody and a list of the components (and positions) to customise the house particular to each player.
  • When a player wishes to edit the house a copy of the empty house and the component list is downloaded.
  • An un-optimised version of the house is created on the players local system. This local copy is a solo instance.
  • The player then adds, moves and deletes items on this local copy. The player character cannot leave the house unless they save or discard their changes (see below)
  • The local system would have to be online throughout for the contents of their inventory and the crown store to be available.
  • If the player does not like the effect of their changes it could even be discarded but the inventory (stored on the server) may need to be rolled back.
  • When the player wishes to save their changes for others to see the local version is copied back to the server and a new optimised copy is created. Whether the new copy is created on the server or created locally and then uploaded would be a design decision.
  • The server would keep track of whether a local copy exists and would not allow logon to that character from another system unless the player agrees to discard it. It would have to avoid multiple characters editing the same home also.
  • It should be possible for other players who are given decorator permission to create a local copy instead of the owner. However there should be only one local copy in existence at any one time (unless the server can merge copies).
  • Performance of the local copy will depend on how many items the player has and how fast the local system is. If the local player wants 10,000 items and has a slow system then rendering will be glacial but it only affects said player. Impact on the server depends on how much info is cached locally and it could be minimised.
Of course this assumes there is enough resources on the local system to create/render the local copy.

Just an after-Christmas thought and suggestion.
@patrick_smyth PC EU
Character: Richard Greymane - Breton Stamina Nightblade (Stealth Archer DD) DC
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