In the last two weeks I worked at the merchant NPC, which is done now. The preliminary testing is also done, and I think they will be introduced on the main server in a week or so.
Other things we've worked at were more of behind the scenes stuff, such as increasing the players limit to 2K, the AI limit to 2K as well (so 4K entities in total), optimizing a few things here and there, a few new admin commands and ban related things, and switching to a asymetric ranging that I coded last year but wasn't used due to it being buggy.
Now I finished that code, and hopefully fixed all the bugs, although it does need some additional testing.
I am having some doubts on whether or not I should introduce the asymetric ranging in the next server update (which will be monday). I guess I will, and if there are problems I will switch back to a version that doesn't include that.
Last year I was working on some code that would allow the players to share their vision with other players in the same map, under some conditions.
Unfortunatelly, I had to remove that code altogether, because I realized it wasn't viable. Not only it might cause confusion but also consume a lot of bandwidth.
One idea I came up with is to give the players the option to make their IP public to their guild members, so that way they can have some sort of p2p network between the clients of the players in the same guild. This would allow them to share their vision client side only, without any server intervention.
But right now we do not have the resources to do that, it would take a lot of work, and currently we don't have any client programmer (all of them are either busy with their school or job, or just moved to other projects).
Finding new people to help us is pretty hard, a lot of them are very enthusiastic in the beginning, but when it comes to actually implementing anything they just lose all their motivation or something.
Sooner or later, we will have to actually hire programmers to work for us, and I have already started doing so. For example, one of the members of this forum is working at rewritting the sound part of the game, for 1K USD.
After that is done, I'll have to contract someone to do various special effects such as spells, missile animations, etc.