Preparing the v1.17 Release

I'm teaching two sections of a 'History Through Games' class, using various board games and mods for Civ IV to teach history & game design. For the second half of the year, my high school class voted to play your Dawn of Civilization mod as our primary computer game for the second half of the year.

I was hoping to send everyone the download link for 1.17 before we break for Christmas. I understand that the delay is to make sure that there are no bugs or errors in the final 1.17 release, and I understand that that your future plans are necessarily imprecise.

a) Do you have a general idea of when 1.17 will be ready for release? Is it "a few more days" or "give it a few more weeks"?
b) If students install version 1.16.7 to start playing over the break, will installing version 1.17 break any save games they make in the interim? I'm wondering if I can provide the 1.16.7 link as a temporary measure.

Thank you so much for your incredible work on this mod. I am so looking forward to having my students discover your mod for themselves!
I cannot commit to or guarantee anything.
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