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How does Steam update WW3 and why is it taking so long?

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We're aware of this problem and we wanted to let you know why this is and when can you expect some improvements. There are two ways Steam lets developers update their games, one is redownloading every changed file and the other one is incremental. It's important toknow the file structure of WW3 at this time, so let's take a look:

We've got a few larger files in our content, mostly divided into maps, items, data and so on, in categories. This is done for speed of development during the time we're changing a lot everywhere. This means though, that all maps are packed into one file (or few of them) and every time something changes on one map, there's a lot of those huge files that are changing. Those are massive, going from 400MB to 13GB per file.

1. Redownloading

Let's say we changed a few meshes, added a weapon and switched a few sounds out. If we were to go with the redownloading method, that would mean having to redownload 99% of the whole game each time we push an update, even a relatively small one.

2. Incremental

This means that we only update 1MB chunks of each file, only those that changed. It also means that Steam has to repack those files and it resulting sometimes in needing up to 50GB of additional free disk space to update the game. Also, this can take a long time on slow disks.

Some people have good connections with no data caps, but for most people this means 8h+ of downloading and possibly no data left to use on other stuff for the rest of the month, this is why we decided to go with the second part, especially since you can just uninstall and redownload the whole game manually if you have one of those good connections as a temporary workaround.

The solution to this problem is setting our packs in a way that better utilizes the incremental process, so each map has multiple of them. This, unfortunately, means that a few people have to take at least few weeks to do this, and since we're still adding and changing a lot, all their work would have to be redone once we've got content mostly locked down. This means wasting time and pushing the release date back a long time.

We do, however, plan to do this once we're close to 1.0 so the future updates that don't touch everything at once don't take as long.

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