Friday, November 29, 2013

Getting Back Into The Swing Of Things

From: Our Technical Director...

Our original schedule for post-Kickstarter updates was thrown to the wind, quite literally, when Typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines. Our first update was, of course, on the Atlas Hurricane. We have since put that on hold, and have picked up with the next update, on the Firefighters memorial.

Sitting next to the headquarters of the Titan City Fire Department in Alexandria, is a small, unassuming memorial. Small when compared to the physical size of most memorials, the meaning of the Fallen Firefighters’ Memorial is titanic in size. This memorial bears the names of the members of the Titan City Fire Department that have fallen, either in the line of duty, or as a result of illness or injury secondary to their performance of that duty. 

The original memorial, which was completed in 1921, was constructed of a circular reflecting pool that had a small fountain in the middle. The exterior of the reflecting pool was covered by small dark-marble slabs, same as it is now, that bear the names of the fallen. During Hurricane Atlas in 1998, the fountain and some of the parts of the reflecting pool and fountain were damaged beyond repair; a few of the marble slabs were also broken, and needed to be replaced, which was seen to immediately. The chiefs of the fire department decided that, instead of just replacing the fountain and all of the associated components, they would like a statue to better honor those for whom the memorial was built. 

Rather than commissioning professional artists to draw up possible ideas, they would have the residents of the city (and surrounding locales) create their own ideas. Eighteen months were allotted for residents to submit their designs, after which it took nearly 6 months to choose the best statue, as there were a large number of excellent submissions. Another 6 months later, not wanting to work through winter, the construction of the statue finally began, beginning with a metal framework, over which the design was placed. Construction was finally completed another 2 years later, in the spring of 2002.

All of the marble slabs that encircle the base bear the names of the fallen, save two. The first features the logo of the Titan City Fire Department, along with a few simple words:

There is an unknown in every fire.
You do your job.  You follow the plan.  Yet still, something can go wrong.   
We honor here, those that made the ultimate sacrifice.

On the adjacent slab to the right, the inscription reads:

When I am called to duty, God
Wherever flames may rage
Give me strength to save a life
Whatever be its age.
Let me embrace a little child
Before it is too late
Or save an older person from
The horror of that fate.
Enable me to be alert
And hear the weakest shout,
And quickly and efficiently
To put the fire out.
I want to fill my calling
To give the best in me,
To guard my friend and neighbor
And protect their property.
And, if, according to your will,
While on duty I must answer death’s call;
Bless with your protecting hand
My family, one and all.

Now, for more direct updates. To handle the add-ons, we are adapting the storefront system we plan on eventually using for the post-KS sales/cash store. Once we have validated that it works without issue, we will be opening this up for you all.

In addition, for the upcoming anniversary, we are coordinating with the Titan Network's #SaveCoH plans. For other anniversary activity, we are excited to see the arrival of Valiance Online's pre-alpha release. The Valiance crew have worked hard to get to this point, and we all should celebrate this milestone.

In the past few weeks we first took a vacation, to let our brains unwind, before we did anything. Since that ended, we have spent the time setting up our licenses, getting ourselves set up with Autodesk, Adobe, Epic, and more. We are unable to give the most exciting news just yet, but it will be forthcoming. And that is what I must leave us with tonight. If things go well, perhaps before the holiday, a mini-update might be going up.

Nate "Doctor Tyche" Downes

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