Development Blog

Where we pretend to know how to code.

BB: 2015 in review

Published: 2015-12-31

Author: Teddi

It’s that time of year again where we review what went down at [BB]! Lets dive in and see what happened.


Put on indefinite hold. At this point it’s gone through development hell and to make it even worth doing at this point would essentially require an engine change and at least 2.5 times the amount of people working on it (not including artistic assets). That said, even though Life in it’s current form won’t see the light of day - there are many valuable lessons that have been learned from Life from a teamwork, development and education perspective.

For one, I ended up leaving Killermon holding the baton when I was essentially burnt out with nothing more left to give on that project. Re-factoring and playing with the same code over and over only led to inevitable burnout and Killermon did a stellar job coming in and doing what he did with the gamemode.  I cannot thank him enough for the work that was done on Life and I can only hope he continues to put up with my obscene projects from time to time.

From a development standpoint (and this one continues to still be bit of a thorn in my side, albeit getting better) is clear project outcome. At times there’s a general outline, an idea for what the system should do; but rarely is there an actual in-depth clear specification as to what exactly it should do. I think this has been evident over the years where systems have come in half-baked or not at a quality that I think is good enough (e.g., the old Surf displayed ranking and the back-end for it were pretty mediocre and a clear rush job). As mentioned I’ve been trying to get better at this and I believe it’s starting to show as a whole, making sure that I see things properly through to the end no matter how “eh” I feel in regards to doing things like artwork. The important thing is to have something out there somewhat polished and usable.

Educational-wise it’s been an ongoing journey. As this is starting to lean on being more personal (and less about BB) I’ll cut this part short!

It’s possible Life will turn up in a different format, possibly renamed or on a different engine in years to come and while I’m not promising anything in the scale of Life, those that saw bits and bobs of the systems when testing and so on may recognise systems that we may recycle for other gamemodes / future projects.


It’s a bit premature to actually tell yet but it does appear that it has  picked up strong traction and is starting to become quite the gamemode. This actually gave a strong sense of motivation for further development and as such we’ve seen the introduction of the new ranking system, spectator virtual scoreboard and the like. It’s also influenced an update of otherwise legacy BBase systems (including store and platinum) and those updates are either currently out or pending release (or some further development).

We’ll continue to monitor the situation and in all honesty I hope that Surf continues to pick up traction. It’s a genuinely fun gamemode that makes abusing the Source engine so much fun and I hope more get exposed to it. There are no plans to bring the likes of Arena Surf / Deathmatch surf back, but instead to try and expand the ‘pro’ systems and also add more of a PVP aspect (e.g. races).

I did say last year that Surf just needed polishing as it looked like ass. It still sort of looks like ass, but at least there’s some more polish on it.

Roleplay (Nutscript / RP08)

With limited areas to advertise in (given FP doesn’t allow for RP adverts anymore) I feel part of the demise of Nutscript was a) it’s Nutscript (which seems rather unpopular) and b) we just got lost in the noise. I make it no secret I dislike the current server listing method however ultimately unless you’re high on the player counts or you  have a strongly established playerbase you’re essentially fucked. That’s not to say it’s not doable however you do need to essentially be pandering somewhat to the crowd. Nutscript and even with “free-flowing” roleplay doesn’t really play into this. (N.B Surf doesn’t suffer from the server listing issue too much as it’s a more unique gamemode and one that has a solid history at [BB], as opposed to the sea of “RP” gamemodes).

With RP08 it originally started as an April Fools. A few people seemed to stick around on it for a few weeks but after that it died down. As it stands I believe it just affirms that the olde style of Hl2 roleplay in the RP08 fashion is essentially down the drain. That’s not to say the gameplay of RP08 fails - it lives on in various third party gamemodes and shows the style of gameplay still works (even if it’s buried under crud at times). Maybe there’s something that can be done with this, who knows.


Not much to say here really. I think Deathrun needs to be given a hard look at to possibly reinvigorate it. This includes looking at every element at what makes Deathrun fun as a whole and what makes Deathrun less fun. However I’m not entirely sure if this will be expanded upon or not.

Lobby / Escape

Lobby and Escape actually both had work done on them in tandem across the past year to bring Escape to life (hurr hurr). The main hurdle has actually been the group system and getting all the loose ends there tied up. This group system (which is a bit early to talk about bar these few details) essentially allow for friends to join up and easily identify each other across gamemodes. Once that’s sorted, Escape will be ready (with a few other loose ends) and we’ll be good to launch multiple servers for that.

Gamemodes not mentioned

That’s because there’s nothing else to say about them at the moment - either because there’s no work that can be done on them or nothing in the foreseeable future.

BB in general

As it currently stands I’m fairly okay with the current state of [BB]. While having donations flowing would be a nicety - it’s not a requirement and I feel that it’s actually shaping up to allow us to provide better gameplay as opposed to overpowered benefits.  From an Admin PoV we’ve accepted Ender as a new sub-admin and it appears he’s getting on fine!

Pragmatically I’m looking for Admins to take more of a hands-off approach - by this I mean I still want Admins and I still want moderation; but the idea is that they shouldn’t have to compromise too much their own gameplay because they’re forced to sort out what amounts to man-children.

Maybe 2016 is year of the [BB]? What I do know is [BB] is nearing that 10 year mark and I’d love to do something for it. But we shall see!

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Themeatically I guess the video fits!

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