Contributing

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I am skilled at ______. What do I need to know?

There are separate pages for guidelines for the following:

How does the project work?

Unvanquished is developed by individuals around the world over the internet. Individuals involved with the project can be divided into a few different categories:

  • Project Leaders. Currently, there are only three of these:
    • Art lead — Responsible for maintaining quality of all elements of the visual and auditory aspects of the game that are not controlled by code.
    • Programming lead — Responsible for overseeing development of the engine and game code.
    • Meta-project & Public Relations lead — Responsible for public relations (any interactions with our player base and the outside world) as well as recruiting new developers.

    Input from project leads is considered only in some cases to be law, but that doesn't mean that discussion from other individuals will not change what the project leaders do or say. The aim of project leads is to guide, not rule: if a project lead has an unpopular opinion, it will not be enforced in any way. The development team as a whole is responsible for shaping Unvanquished, not a handful of individuals. Developers are not expected to do what they are asked, but if a project lead makes a request, then there is generally a reason for it.

  • Developers. These are all those who actively make large contributions (in terms of effort) to the project.
  • Contributors. These are those who have made smaller or more infrequent contributions to the project, or who do not wish to get too involved.
  • Users. Those who play the game but do not contribute any further than to merely provide discussion fall into this category.

How do I become a developer?

For content creators

Please let us know that you are interested in producing content for the game via IRC or the forums and someone will get in touch with you with further instructions.

For programmers

Talk to the team! Just introduce yourself on IRC or the forums and get involved in discussion. If you appear to be intelligent and posses the right attitude, you may be made into a contributor (to allow you access to the development sub-forums) without even having contributed any actual code.

How often is there a release?

The game is currently in Alpha. Official releases are made once a month. Our last Alpha release is expected to be the 22nd, making the first Beta release in January.

Where does discussion take place?

Unlike many open-source projects, we do not have a mailing list. Instead, discussion occurs in one of two places:

  • The forums, where long-form discussion takes place, and
  • IRC, where short-form discussion takes place.

Because of the verbose nature of the forums, they are the preferred destination for any serious discussion. Moreover, the forums allow individuals from all timezones the opportunity to contribute to discussion, and discussion generally stays much more on-topic.

Do note that there are two separate forums for discussion:

  • "Community Development", and
  • "Development".

While the former is visible to the public, the latter is not; you must have either Contributor or Developer status to view the "Development" forums. While not everyone agrees that this is a good idea, the reasoning is as follows:

  • There is not much useful feedback to be gained on specific, development-related discussions from users. While user input is read and acknowledged by members of the development team, users who do not have development skills cannot by definition make useful contributions to the discussion of aspects such as how particular engine systems will be implemented or the like.
  • Some members of the development team fear that users will be driven away if they see how development actually works. That is, oftentimes very encouraging amounts of progress are made very quickly, followed by either silence from particular members of the development team (due to wavering interest or real life issues) or show-stopping problems. These sort of things happen quite often, so the idea is that by hiding development discussion, users only see those subprojects which have actually reached completion, to avoid disappointment.