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Author Topic: AGS Awards 2016 Client [bug reports, suggestions, feature requests]  (Read 3948 times)

Snarky

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The final version of the client is now available!

UPDATE! New version that fixes random laughter bug:


Some instructions on how to use it:
Spoiler: ShowHide

You can also use a couple of special commands by typing them into the chat line:
/cinema - hide the UI (and bring it back: you'll have to type it blind since the input box is invisible)
/help - IRC tips



Hi gang!

The 2016 Awards are almost upon us, and once again it falls upon me to update the client. One of my main tasks has been to update my old version to the higher resolution introduced last year. So far it's looking pretty good (the UI could use some polishing), but better safe than sorry. So if you have the time, please join me for a beta test of the client tomorrow, Thursday 9. March, at 20:00 Central European Time. (That's 19:00 GMT, and other times around the world – you're smart people, you know how time zones work!)

I've been working on the client all day, so here's a fresh-off-the-compiler build (link removed to avoid confusion):

AGS Awards 2016 Client (03-09 beta test build)

Things I want to test:

  • Whether the speed is OK (there's a lot going on!)
  • Running in Direct3D
  • Glitches, bugs
Fair warning: I've only had a couple of weeks to work on it, so it's not going to be as slick and elaborate as I would like. But hey, the games and the people are the important thing, right?
« Last Edit: 24 Jun 2018, 17:29 by Snarky »

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Thanks for keeping the show going on, Snarky!

(Edited by moderator)
« Last Edit: 08 Mar 2017, 19:43 by Amy »

Snarky

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I regret mentioning it now; it's not a big deal, and I'd rather keep focus on the positive. I've therefore edited out the discussion of the issue from the posts in the thread.

This is a great community, and as long as I don't screw up the client I'm sure it'll be a great show. To that end, your help with beta testing will be much appreciated!

  • Running in Direct3D

BTW, I did not update our main development branch yet, but this build here has sprite limit removed for Direct3D. This fix may be added upon stable version too. (I am a bit reluctant making a patch of it, because I am not yet completely certain how D3D library will behave with increased amount of drawing).

Snarky

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For some reason the crash isn't happening any more (on my computer) since I updated the client to AGS 3.4. I thought maybe you had incorporated the fix into that release... Or maybe I made some other changes between the 2014 ceremony and now that I've forgotten about.

If it crops up again I might try switching to that custom build, thanks! (However, I am using more than one background frame, so maybe not.)

(However, I am using more than one background frame, so maybe not.)
Um... what do you mean?

Snarky

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I'm referring to this:

The code is not perfect yet, and I found one game crashing case (if more than 1 room background frame is used), but I think I will be able to make it work soon.

Snarky

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I've just uploaded the build for the beta test... and removed it to avoid confusion with the final version.
« Last Edit: 09 Mar 2017, 20:08 by Snarky »

Snarky

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Re: AGS Awards 2016 Client [beta test completed]
« Reply #8 on: 09 Mar 2017, 20:10 »
Thanks to everyone who took part in the beta test!

I'll try to fix as many as I can of the issues that came up, but there didn't seem to be any real showstoppers. Remember, the actual ceremony is this Saturday: http://www.adventuregamestudio.co.uk/forums/index.php?topic=54316.0

Hope to see you all there!

Danvzare

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Re: AGS Awards 2016 Client [beta test completed]
« Reply #9 on: 11 Mar 2017, 10:09 »
Not much time left to post that finished client. :-D

Snarky

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While it's still fresh in mind, I should probably ask you all for feedback on this year's ceremony client (both the application and how the show ran inside the app): was there anything that didn't work well, did you experience any bugs, and what improvements would you like for next year?

Some people mentioned they were experiencing bugs or crashes during the ceremony, but I wasn't able to catch what was happening at the time. Could you fill me in?

Apart from that, I have a few improvements in mind already. Because I was a bit pressed for time, I didn't get around to updating a bunch of the graphics, audio, and music, and there was a small bug with the scrolling in the chat log when you collapse/expand it, so those I'm already aware of.
« Last Edit: 13 Mar 2017, 19:58 by Snarky »

abstauber

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I was highly impressed by the client, as it ran very smoothly without any trouble. The password system for extra avatars is a bit clunky - maybe the *oceanspirit club* could also be unlocked by a mod via IRC command.

Cassiebsg

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I didn't experienced any crashes or noticed bugs, except that Yeti jumping all over the place... was scary to be down there! 8-0 But I'm guessing that was just a bit of lag in the client updating so many avatars at once.

But I do have some suggestions: How about giving us some chairs and tables? Where are we going to place our blue mugs? And where are the drinks? (laugh) I'll offer my waiter to bring the drinks around and he's even fancy dressed for the occasion! (nod)
Also would be nice to have a special view linked to the right mouse button, as I'm guessing that you get more than just "walk view" when we export a character. ;)

Now a thing I thought a bit annoying was the text was being rendered over each others, at sometimes was impossible to read so of the lines. Maybe see if it's possible for the client to check if a line of text is already occupying that "space" and write the next above or under?

And then the chat text window was even harder to use to catch up that line you missed. For some reason it whenever I tried to go back to read a line, it would jump down again to the new line.
There are those who believe that life here began out there...

pcj

I would suggest maybe two chat windows, one for the actual ceremony, and one for discussion. But I don't have any ideas on how to avoid UI clutter there.
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I was a very cool experience in general, loved the entrance sequence.
I would look at a larger font setting for the presenters, and break up the cluster at the side of the stage. Get the speaker to stand over at the podium, the text was kinda piling on the left.
Was there a command for laugh? I couldn't figure it out.
Is it complex to add more views to a character? A talking view would be nice.
Would like to see the guys up in the balcony auto-heckle occasionally using some random classic Muppet's lines. :)
From time to time characters would rubber band across the stage, not sure if this can be helped probably client-side connection issues, better than things getting out of sink.
Was a smooth experience over all.

Snarky

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Thanks for the feedback, everyone! Glad you mostly liked it. Again, most of the credit for that goes to Dualnames and Wyz for creating the core program; I've mostly just tinkered with the cosmetic aspects. (And also thanks to cat for gathering most of this year's game resources on top of everything else!)

Is it complex to add more views to a character? A talking view would be nice.
Also would be nice to have a special view linked to the right mouse button, as I'm guessing that you get more than just "walk view" when we export a character. ;)

It should be possible to code up a talk view (since all speech is non-blocking background speech, the built-in system won't work). However, only a few of the avatars (maybe a quarter of them?) actually have a talk view available: obviously, for games that use Sierra-style speech we can't use the speech portrait, and I don't think they were ever imported for the LucasArts or other non-AGS characters. That's the main reason I haven't made it a priority.

A very small number of avatars (I should think less than a dozen) also have a "special view" with some custom animation. I suppose I could code in some other action (like a little hop, or a spin) for characters that don't have it (with these actions probably disabled during speeches), since I realize that adding interactivity is key to feeling present in the hall.

I didn't experienced any crashes or noticed bugs, except that Yeti jumping all over the place... was scary to be down there! 8-0 But I'm guessing that was just a bit of lag in the client updating so many avatars at once.
From time to time characters would rubber band across the stage, not sure if this can be helped probably client-side connection issues, better than things getting out of sink.

Yeah, I'm not sure how much there is to do about this. As you say, it's probably some kind of lag, either on the IRC end or in processing the messages.

Was there a command for laugh? I couldn't figure it out.

No, there's not. Laughter is currently triggered by the director (i.e. me), and is not dynamic the way applause is. It would probably be fairly easy to switch it to a similar system as the clapping; the biggest part of the task is to find a bunch of suitable audio clips (laughter from different-sized groups), importing them and getting them linked correctly.

Now a thing I thought a bit annoying was the text was being rendered over each others, at sometimes was impossible to read so of the lines. Maybe see if it's possible for the client to check if a line of text is already occupying that "space" and write the next above or under?

And then the chat text window was even harder to use to catch up that line you missed. For some reason it whenever I tried to go back to read a line, it would jump down again to the new line.
I would look at a larger font setting for the presenters
I would suggest maybe two chat windows, one for the actual ceremony, and one for discussion. But I don't have any ideas on how to avoid UI clutter there.

Yeah, I don't remember speech overlapping being such a problem in previous years. I'll look into it.

I wanted a bigger speech font, but I just couldn't find a large enough pixel font with outline, and the TTF auto-outline is no good at this resolution (for the titles above the stage I hack a thicker outline by displaying four black copies of the same text behind the main text, each offset in one direction).

The chat log has some undesirable behavior, and could definitely use some improvements. I might try to implement a filter you can set with a check box to see only the presenters' lines or everyone's chat.

break up the cluster at the side of the stage. Get the speaker to stand over at the podium, the text was kinda piling on the left.

Well, in the past, no one ever left the podium: all presenters stood right on top of each other at the same coordinates, all with the same avatar (Indy). (I'm talking about presenters not using the AGS client, but only online through IRC.) So I think this was an improvement. ;)

It's a bit tricky to determine automatically when someone on stage is actually presenting, so that they ought to come up to the lectern. I suppose I could add some simple heuristic (e.g. if they've said three lines in a row without anyone else on stage interrupting) and see how it works.

I also just realized that it's quite possible to detect automatically that a character is too short and will be hidden behind the lectern, and have them "step up" on something to get them higher up.

Would like to see the guys up in the balcony auto-heckle occasionally using some random classic Muppet's lines. :)

But I do have some suggestions: How about giving us some chairs and tables? Where are we going to place our blue mugs? And where are the drinks? (laugh) I'll offer my waiter to bring the drinks around and he's even fancy dressed for the occasion! (nod)

Ha ha, there are a lot of things like this that could be added. I guess I see the primary focus as being the ceremony, the social experience around it and just the basic functionality of the client, so I find it hard to justify adding NPCs and stuff like that. I would probably sooner try to implement a better text input box (where you can move the cursor etc.), for example. If any volunteers are motivated to extend it in that direction, though, I'll certainly be happy to assist.

The password system for extra avatars is a bit clunky - maybe the *oceanspirit club* could also be unlocked by a mod via IRC command.

I'm not sure I understand the suggestion here. The "Oceanspirit club"? I suppose it would be possible to unlock the avatars via IRC, but the password-protected ones are generally intended to be exclusive to certain participants (i.e. only cat and miez had the password for the Toffee avatar). I don't know how to handle that any easier.

I do want to streamline the profile creation a bit for next year, and add some additional features (notably the ability to use a NickServ-registered nick, and perhaps special "badges" for nominees? – Not sure if that's a good idea or not).

MiteWiseacreLives!

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Quote
It's a bit tricky to determine automatically when someone on stage is actually presenting, so that they ought to come up to the lectern. I suppose I could add some simple heuristic (e.g. if they've said three lines in a row without anyone else on stage interrupting) and see how it works.
OK, I thought the characters on stage were player-controlled just like we were.. so does the MC decide who goes to which position via commands?

Gurok

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NickServ registered nicks would be great.

The font sizes for spoken text and the IRC log should basically be swapped. I know you didn't have time to find a larger font for speech.

I actually thought the height thing was quite funny when the GNRBLEX was giving a speech.

This might just be me, but I seem to recall keyboard movement in previous versions. Regardless, it would be nice to have. Sometimes it's tough to achieve precise positioning in a crowd with just mouse movement.

I want to see a replacement act for Daft Punk.

Snarky

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Quote
It's a bit tricky to determine automatically when someone on stage is actually presenting, so that they ought to come up to the lectern. I suppose I could add some simple heuristic (e.g. if they've said three lines in a row without anyone else on stage interrupting) and see how it works.
OK, I thought the characters on stage were player-controlled just like we were.. so does the MC decide who goes to which position via commands?

It's a little confusing, and has to do with wanting to maintain backwards compatibility with regular IRC.

People who use the AGS client control their own avatars (for the most part: when they get called up on stage or sent back down, that movement is scripted). However, you can also join in via regular IRC, and if those users are called on stage (given voice or op status, in IRC terms), they get avatars assigned by the system that are controlled automatically. In the ceremony, the users SnarkyIRC (using a Donald Dowell avatar) and cat (using a Toffee avatar) were IRC-only, because we needed to be on IRC in order to control certain other aspects of the ceremony: we also each had another avatar in the client that we could control directly. I didn't keep track of which other presenters were IRC-only (it used to be easy to tell, because they would all look like Indy, but now I don't think there's any immediate way to tell them apart), but I think maybe bicilotti (as Oceanspirit Danish) was?

Anyway, this meant cat (or I) couldn't actually move her main "host" avatar around: the positioning all happened automatically. And the whole way that character positions are synchronized between clients makes it tricky to do anything much more advanced.

Danvzare

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One bug I came across several times, was that if I posted a message just before the "Quiet down" thing appeared and our text was hushed on the IRC, I would get an error. It didn't seem to affect anything, but it gave me a mini heart attack the first time I saw it.

Also, there was quite a bit of rubber banding happening.

As for features, it would be nice if the avatar selection screen was partially transparent. I think I missed a bit of the ceremony while trying to find a certain avatar to change into.

Also, it would be nice if you could change directions without moving by using the arrow keys.
« Last Edit: 14 Mar 2017, 11:33 by Danvzare »