I spent another whole day wrestling with this stacking bug, but I think I'm finally starting to make visible progress. The code changes have been far flung, reaching beyond just the items and inventory screen, including such systems as:
In retrospect, if I had to identify a system that was most in-grained in NEO Scavenger, I now know it would be the item code. Items are just everywhere, and used for everything.
Well, I think I've opened Pandora's box with this stacking change. I was so close to having it up and running, then noticed a little problem. And that problem turned into a bigger problem. Before I knew it, I was looking at a rewrite of large portions of the item code.
And unfortunately, backing out the change will probably take almost as long as fixing it. So I'm midway between what used to work in a flawed way, and what may work in a more accurate way.
I thought I was almost ready for a build today, but ran into a last-minute bug with consuming stacked items. It turns out to be a tricky problem, and has to do with the way the game keeps track of stacked items when the top-most one is consumed. I'll need to spend some more time on it tomorrow, as it's left me blocked this evening.
As mentioned yesterday, I've been working on fixing the issue with equipping stacks of items. I think I got that sorted out today. It turns out that there are many, many different ways that items and stacks combine! Some are pretty hard to handle, too.
Hey Folks! I got to spend some quality time with development today, and was able to add some new stuff to NEO Scavenger.
Many of you have pointed out that it's a bit weird to have a player that can spot a shack in the woods from kilometers away, but can't seem to pick out whole lakes, rivers, and swamps. I totally agree. So I worked on some water tiles to correct that weirdness:
Hope everybody had a good weekend! It's starting to get frosty here, so I squeezed in some last minute yard work. Pretty much the rest of my spare time was spent on Defender's Quest, though. That game is deceptively addicting!
Well, I think I've figured out how to make Desura connect work. I've written all the pieces, and they're working locally. So the next step is to migrate the changes to the live server. Provided that test goes well, I should be able to switch on the feature soon. Fingers crossed!
Combat Retreat Bug
I also had a chance to start playing a more lengthy test session today, and ran into a new set of combat bugs. It turns out that if the player and last combatant retreat at the same time, the game gets stuck in an empty combat screen.
I think I've got the stacking bug sorted out. I'm at the point now where all tests seem to succeed, using stacks in all the creative ways I can think of. One final test will involve just playing normally for an extended time, to see if anything comes up that I missed in unit-testing.
Sorry for the delay in updates today, folks. We had a mighty wind sweep through today, and it must've knocked down some power lines. We were without power for about 6 hours, and the internet took a few hours on top of that to get sorted.
I managed to get a little done this morning before the outage, and stacking items are partially working. There are some issues with edge cases, including one infinite recursion bug. However, the idea seems to be working in principle. And the magic recipes are acting like normal stacks of paper!
Phew! That was a long stretch of data entry, but I think I've finished typing, copying, and pasting my way through reams of mini encounters.
Testing The "Mini Encounter"
I was able to enter the last few this afternoon, and run a few tests. It was actually kinda cool running into some random ones on the map. I was so used to seeing them in SQL form, I forgot what the actual choice icons corresponded to, and what the risks and rewards were. I think they manage to hit the target of those old-school RPG and strategy game vignettes.
I hope everyone had a good weekend. The extra day off was a big help for me. Weekends often feel like they're over before they start, so the extra day made it possible to sit back and just enjoy. I had a fun evening being introduced to Kerbal Space Program. There should be more weekends like these!
Going Hard in the Content
It took a bit of effort to get back into last week's rhythm, but I managed to finish a few more short encounters today.
Another grueling day of data entry comes to a close :) I managed to knock out quite a bit today, though by the end, my mind was going AWOL. I seriously took 5 minutes to type '276' into an SQL data field because I kept drifting off into la-la land. Too much data entry!
I'm almost there, though. I can see the end of the tunnel. Soon I will be able to switch back to coding and art for a while!
"Smallpox," you ask? "Wasn't that eradicated in 1980?"
Almost. It was eradicated for all practical purposes. However, there are currently two stores of the virus on the planet, locked away in secure facilities, for purposes unknown. And while most feel that there is no "public good" reason for keeping them, including the World Health Organization, the two government keepers of the virus refuse to destroy them.