Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

From Team Rawkhet, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! This has truly been a wonderful December for us with the launch of Sword and Shield, and we hope everyone enjoys the rest of the holiday season as well.

Please note that we are on holiday until January 10. Normally, we would continue to trade even when we go abroad, but after the immense workload over the past 5 weeks (and the juggling we’ve had to do with our careers, myself as a Gym Leader), we have decided that Team Rawkhet truly deserves a break.

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On the subject of Timing

One of the big issues of dealing with a high volume of customers is the inability to provide real time timing updates. Unfortunately, the amount of variance is too high to estimate how long it would take within the Trade Queue before reaching a specific order.

Each Pokemon takes approximately 40-60 seconds to trade. That’s about a 10-minute variance on a 30-Pokemon trade, with most orders being 30-60 Pokemon. There is additional time overhead to establish trades with customers, lasting anywhere from a minute to 10 minutes. Additionally, when a hard network error occurs, trades cannot be conducted for 30-60 minutes.

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Major Service Impact: 2019-12-11

Services Impacted:

  • Switch (All) Preparation Queue
  • Switch (All) Trade Queue
  • 3DS (All) Trade Queue

On December 11, the team discovered an issue causing abnormally high disconnect rates with our customers. There are two network infrastructures powering Rawkhet Pokemon – an isolated local WiFi network which is used in HQ and a Personal Area Network (aka mobile hotspot) used on-the-go.

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Switch Updates and Custom Pokemon

Switch Updates

Earlier today, Nintendo released a firmware update on the Switch. This means we are unable to go online at the moment and trades are currently on hold (customers with pending orders would have received an email, and the Status page is updated to reflect this).

The good news is that this is a trivial update that can be easily solved, but Nintendo has released the patch at a bad time with Custom Firmware (CFW) currently undergoing a refactor (think restructuring) process that is expected to complete on or by Sunday.

We are well equipped to deal with this and will attempt to process orders ahead of time. As we have 2 Switch consoles, we’ll update one to Official Firmware (OFW) and process outstanding orders on Friday night and the other on Saturday night.

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Site Status Page

This has been Rawkhet’s busiest week with near non-stop trading, living off McDonalds and Uber Eats. For the first time ever, we’ve been forced to hire additional hands!

We’ve created a temporary Site Status page so that customers can keep track of where their order stands. The page also offers an explanation on our process and lists foreseeable downtime.

Thank you all for your patience and patronage.

Second Switch in the Mix

Uh-oh, it’s starting to become clear that we can’t continue on just using one Switch like we thought. The standby Switch is now in the mix! This should hopefully ease the load and decrease queue timings. One big improvement in Sword and Shield is we don’t use Friend Codes anymore (let’s just pretend LGPE doesn’t exist). This allows us to load balance much better, as customers are not assigned a static console to trade with.

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Boxes Full, Knees Weak, Arms Spaghetti

We’re now in Day 2 of the Sword and Shield influx! The Pokemon can’t get traded fast enough – especially since the game servers have been having maintenance windows. At least we used the downtime to prepare the new orders, but all 32 boxes are full so the preparation queue may be a little stuck for now.

In the past 24 hours, 829 Pokemon have been prepared across 49 orders. The peak queue time is 3 hours.

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Busiest Day in Rawkhet History

Wow! We silently launched our preliminary listings for Sword and Shield earlier today, and it’s already been the busiest day in Rawkhet Pokemon history. We haven’t even done any marketing for the new stuff yet! A big thank you and shout out to all our patrons who really keep us going.

It hasn’t been 24 hours yet It’s been 24 hours since our listings went live, and we have prepared 1,064 Pokemon so far over 49 orders and counting.

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