Close, but Maybe Not Close Enough

Hey Folks! I decided to give it another day of my time, as a few more ideas occurred to me overnight. And I did make a little bit of progress. But I'm not sure it'll be enough to make it worthwhile.

My first few attempts at rebuilding it with different Lime/OpenFL lib versions didn't help, but I was eventually able to trace the app's renderer setup and force it to use software rendering (Cairo). And this actually launched! I was even able to get as far as the opening cryo encounter, but it crashed on the map. Probably due to some gpu calls needed by the tilemaps. And it was probably a no-go anyway, since the framerate was extremely slow.

Later, when I stumbled upon yet another thread with Lars's input, I found his tips for forcing Lime to use ANGLE, which is an API translator for DirectX that supports OpenGL calls. Basically, Google made a layer you can sandwich between your app and DirectX so the app calls OpenGL stuff, and ANGLE translates that to DirectX.

The good news is that this actually worked! The bad news, as you can see in today's image, is that it's only partially working. Seemingly at random, buttons are displaying the wrong image. Usually another image on the screen. Each time the app runs, they break in different ways. Fullscreen causes a massive slowdown in framerate. The creature sprites are missing.

In short, it's like I'm back to where I started several weeks ago when I first started fixing graphics issues. And all this just to get it working on Win7 64-bit with certain gpus. I haven't even looked at the memory leak stuff. And I'm still not sure this would even run on an XP or Win7 32-bit machine, even if I compiled with the 32bit flags.

I think we may be out of luck. As far as I can tell, I've got a lot more work to do before this would be ready for release. And I don't think I can afford the hit in my schedule. Space prototype has already been on ice for over a month, and there's only so much cash left in the reserves to see it through to something worth selling.

One possibility I can explore, I guess, is hiring a contractor to pick up where I've left off. Maybe they can spend a few weeks fixing it up so the OS coverage is good. But for now, I think I need a break from this exercise. I'm bummed.


Malacodor's picture

END TURN is all we need! It might kill the player, but they'll die anyway sooner or later. ;-)

Having two versions really seems to be the sanest option by now.

Ran around with a clown mask before it was cool

dcfedor's picture

Also, who needs stat bars? :)

But seriously, I think I need to take a step away from this for a bit. Even if the solution is one Flash version and one native "high-end PCs only" version, that means at least six new builds to maintain (1 for each OS, plus Yukon for each OS).

And that assumes no native demo versions. (Which would be another 3.) Not having the demo is an option, but users would be left guessing if they could run the native version.

That, and I'm not sure if Humble allows alternate builds from their site. (Fine for Steam users, but I'm not sure about DRM-free ones.)

And that assumes I can fix the memory leak/crash appearing for those who can actually run it right now. I think it can be done, but I need a break :)

Dan Fedor - Founder, Blue Bottle Games

Cat Lady's picture
Cat Lady

Tracing obscure issues and bugs and trying to fix them with help of ancient threads, comments in bug reports, and blog posts... Story of my life ;)

We are in a good company, though - mandatory xkcd:

In a more serious note, again huge thank you for such steadfast commitment in attempts to bring the new engine to desktop. Even if it falls in the end, the effort won't be forgotten :)

"Icicle, icicle, where are you going? I have a hiding place, when spring marches in..."

dcfedor's picture

@Cat Lady, glad to hear the effort was appreciated! Even if it didn't end up playable.

And I'm still interested in reopening this book at some point. I want this thing out there to replace Flash. Just...ugh, I need software to work for me for once, not the other way around :)

Dan Fedor - Founder, Blue Bottle Games