A community focused Exile server project

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Hi Everyone!

Over the past several days I've been playing with the idea of starting a new exile server community. My vision is to put together a team of admins and developers and forge a community that has direct and easy communication back to the servers admin and development team. Part of my vision for this project heavily focuses around being community driven. What this means is that content on the server will be heavily influenced by decisions and actions taken by the servers community as a whole. Major gameplay changes will be staged on a test server and demo'ed to the community, allowing the community to suggest and preview changes, or vote for or against them. After the community has it's input, then the final decisions are voted on by the development team. This won't be a monarchy run by one person, rather it'll operate much more like a democracy.

I want a close relationship with the community. I feel that's the best way to develop a product that everyone can enjoy to the maximum potential. I think it's also a great way to get people who are interested Arma modding and server development exposure to it, when they don't really know where to start, and could be an awesome conduit into finding new development talent. I intend to have a *VERY* active development sandbox that runs parallel to our production server; We'll just call that the playground. It'll run a semi current copy of our production database, with new and exciting changes that we're testing. Basically a PTS(Public Test Server) that's ALWAYS open to the public. You may join and experience some bugs while testing out some of the proposed new and excited features, but then we'll always have the stable production server running for you to enjoy too. Testing will always be done extensively on our PTS before changes are pushed to production, which allows us to eliminate most of if not all of the upgrade day bugs and exploits.

One of the things that seem to be a common issue on the exile servers I've played on is the lack of administrator interaction with the community. A server that I'm very active on has an active and capable admin team, but seems to have put up a "4th wall" between them and their users. They introduce experience breaking changes to the server without notifying the community (for example, randomly adding armed vehicles after a reboot, causing people to file support requests because "hackers spawned vehicles onto the server"), or a critical service will go down (Such as teamspeak) and the admins won't announce the backup IP/DNS until close to 12 hours later after half of the servers playerbase decided to log off due to no TS being available. These are all situations that could have been handled differently to avoid a lot of confusion and those are mistakes that I wouldn't make with this community and is one of the main reasons I've visioned it like this. 

My endgame is to create an Exile experience that's unique to our brand. I'm interested in a semi-hardcore experience where things don't come easy, but they don't come at a ridiculously difficult rate either. I want vehicles, premium loot and bases to be something valued dearly rather than something that people can easily keep throwing money at to obtain. Explosives for the purpose of gaining access to bases shouldn't come cheaply either. It should take you a full day rather than an hour or two to gain enough money for something such as an ifrit. Traders at the the safezone shouldn't even exist if you ask me, except for maybe one that can buy VERY basic supplies off of without the ability to sell anything to them. If you decide to loot any military base or other high value loot spawn, it shouldn't come without having to take out a small squad of AI first.

These are just a few of the idea's I have. All of these idea's will be wrapped up by a professional development and administrative team. We'll use real project management and source versioning tools to do our work. We'll follow real software development studio practices to ensure that everything works as smoothly and efficient as possible. 

Who am I?
I'm just a dude who's getting bored of the servers I'm playing on and is getting tired of the lackluster admin experiences I deal with on those servers. I want to make a new exile experience and I want to learn while I'm doing it. I also want to meet new like minded people as myself. I've made some pretty cool new friends in my travels within DayZ, Arma and Exile. I'm sure there are a ton of other cool people I could meet and learn from by starting this project... So here I am!

I have a very strong background in technology and IT+Software development policy. I've setup Exile and other Arma 3/2 servers before in the past, but outside of doing minor tweaks to missions and mods, I don't have a whole lot of experience on the scripting side of Arma. I figured this would be a good way to strengthen that skill set a bit. I have a lot of advanced experience with both Linux and Windows systems, and I have some web development skills as well.

I worked in IT management for close to 10 years before moving over into software engineering. I'm currently leading a platform engineering team doing operating system integration for a Video/Audio conferencing software company. I also worked with the original team as their QA infrastructure architect and their community server manager. 

What am I bringing to the table?
I'm bringing about 10 years of experience in IT and software development infrastructure and policy management. It's something *very* useful to bring onto a project like this since most of these type of projects are generally pretty lacking in the management experience side of things. Having that experience will help guide us through the development process with as little hitches as possible along the way.

I have my own modest cluster of servers setup at home on a 50mbit connection. It's a cluster made up of two ESXi servers. Both servers have redundant PSU's, x2 quad core 3.0ghz CPU's, and 32gb of ram on raid10 backed storage. It's a great setup for running the Arma 3 server, and has plenty of capacity to scale out into more servers if we want. With so many potential hands in the pot, the more servers we can spread our idea's across the better, right? If I reach my network limits, I can upgrade to a 150mbit line(although, for a good deal more $$$/m), or I could just skip that part and commit to coloing the machine in a datacenter. Colo prices are cheap near me. I can also carve out more VM's if we need an extra server for other stuff (like repo's, TS, website, ect). Point is though, we have more than enough server resources to get this project underway. I just need experienced people now.

Who am I looking for?
I'm looking for people with a little more than basic experience in setting up an exile server. Basically, if you're comfortable setting up an Exile server from scratch and applying one of the many mods in Downloads & Releases, than your experience qualifies. I'm looking for people who are 18 or older, although it's *NOT* a deal breaker if you're under 18. If you're under 18 and feel that you're mature and have the qualifying experience to match you should probably apply. Arma modding and map making experience or knowledge isn't required but would be a *HUGE* plus, as I've said I'm learning myself and having someone who knows more than I on that topic would be a nice little addition to the team. The biggest quality I'm looking for in a new team member is the passion of learning about this type of stuff. Arma is a big and complicated beast. I don't think anyone knows it 100%, so in a sense everyone is always going to be learning something. Learning how this big complex beast works and applying those lessons to developing our project is how we'll grow and become great!

How do I apply?
It's pretty simple... I don't think there is a point to any long winded google docs applications where you tell me why you think you're awesome for this team. I've probably heard it all before anyway, lol. If you want to apply the best way is to add me on Skype or PM me here and we can setup a time to meet up on teamspeak and discuss the project and talk about your experience. The Exile community is fragmented into a ton of different time zones so I think skype would work best for everyone involved.

You can contact me on skype via username "DeMiNe0".

Edited by DeMiNe0
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