Help: reporting_bugs

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Help Reporting Bugs

In the 20 years ZombieMUD has been around, the amount of content has gotten
immense and since we are still developing the game, it can only get even more so.
Over the years there have been nearly 200 people involved in the development 
and the quality and the stability of the underlying code is variable. This means 
there are bugs, both minor and major. While we, the wizards, are able to catch a 
great number of those ourselves, the sheer volume of content makes it impossible 
to see everything. 

So in the interest of the betterment of the game, when encountering a bug or
something you think might be a bug, you should take the necessary time to report
it to a wizard. In most cases the lists in 'help whinelist', 'help guildadmins'
and 'help raceadmins' along with the command 'creator' should help you find the 
correct person to report it to. Ideally, reports should be directed to the wizard
who is either the creator or the admin of the part of the game bug is in. But if
that wizard is no longer around or no creator/admin is listed, you should contact
any active archwizard. In general, wizards below level 150 do not possess the
requisite level of access to anything beyond their own code.

To report a bug, you should use one of the methods listed below:

  1) Use the command 'bug' (directing the report to the person found previously) if
     the report is concise.
  2) Use the post office (w,s from CS) for the more lengthy reports
  3) Use 'tell' for the more urgent cases, and if the person you are reporting to is

  * Note that some wizards use fakeidle, making it difficult to determine if they
    are present. If unsure, use the command 'bug' or post office, for tells can
    easily be missed.

When making the report, you should take care to describe your problem and describe
the situation to the best of your ability. In the case of bugs in the character you
should also avoid the 'quit & relogin' fix typically recommended by players, for it
makes the investigation of the bug much more difficult (and sometimes impossible).

Things to include in a report:  
  First and foremost:
  1) Description of what happened.

  Additional information:
  2) Were you able to replicate the bug.
  3) If 'Your sensitive mind notices a wrongness in the fabric of space' message was
  4) The approximate time of the event.
  5) The location at the time (if known).
  6) What was the situation, ie. what were your doing at the time.
  7) Command / action (if any) that generated the bug.
  * It is not necessary to include all of the listed things, but the more details 
    provided the easier it is to find the cause of the problem.
Things to avoid:
  1) Abusive language
     We do this as a hobby for our own entertainment. For free.
     It might suck to have lost you best weapon or a great amount of experience
     to a bug, but try to be civil when contacting a wizard. 
  2) Multireports
     When choosing a wizard to address, pick one and stick with the one, instead
     of reporting the bug to every wizard currently online. This is likely to lead
     to a great deal of confusion, and possibly real problems, should several 
     wizards start dealing with the bug unbeknownst of each other.
  3) You [mud]: w: wiz
     This tells us absolutely nothing of your problem, or if you even have a
     problem to begin with, other than giving the impression it is really nothing
     serious if you can't be bothered with anything else than this generalized
     'I might have a problem'. Which is why typically the only result of this
     approach is 1-3 players "putting on their hats and robes".
  4) Private channel reports
     This type of "report" is next to useless. 
     While it is true that archwizards sometimes check various private channels
     and sometimes might catch a bug this way, this a far too rare thing to be
     relied on.

See also 'bug', 'cheating', 'whinelist', 'raceadmins', 'guildadmins', 'creator'.

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