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AI War 2

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New build! Wow it's been a while, so this is huge. https://wiki.arcengames.com/index.php?title=AI_War_2:Finalizing_Multiplayer#Beta_3.500_Data_Integrity_And_Game_Tech_Upgrades

This one is on the beta branch! In Steam, you will need to select current_beta to see it. On GOG Galaxy, you'll need to select Beta. In the game you should then see 3.500 as the version.

On Steam, there is a most_recent_stable_beta if you have problems with this one and need to fall back to 3.313 as the previous beta.

So what's going on with this release? Well... a lot!

1. We've upgraded the version of the unity engine that we're using by a lot of versions, and so now we have native M1/Silicon support for macs, as well as better support for OSX and Linux in general. Also also, it's probable that the bug with Radeon cards on OSX in Metal is fixed.

2. I made a ton of improvements visually and performance-wise to the main menu yet again, so that runs better than ever even on very low-end machines.

3. There have been a number of UI performance improvements in general. Visually nothing is different much.

4. Random bugfixes, but really only a handful of them in the main.

5. A HUGE architecture rework when it comes to how data is loaded and pooled. It turns out that we were having a ton of memory leaking out in various ways, and I've now pretty much entirely put a stop to that. Thanks to Daniexpert for bringing this to my attention. This particular thing is so overwhelmingly large in how much of the game that it touches that there may be some lingering bugs that are unknown, and there are a handful of fairly minor known issues listed in the release notes, too.

6. There are now anti-memory-leak tools for modders and faction developers to be able to monitor their own stuff, too. So far just by watching at the OS level, it doesn't look like much is leaking there at the moment, if anything, but it's nice to have.

7. The memory leak work, which was extensive, also doubles as a helper for multiplayer client integrity checking. I haven't gotten into that yet, but it's going to be very useful for getting the last of the MP oddities out of the way.

Known issues? Sure:
- Centering is off when going into the lobby usually the first time.
- Notifications at the top of the screen flicker at the moment.
- Mods: Chrysalis Devourer and Kaizer's Marauders are probably re-broken despite SirLimbo just fixing them a bit ago.
- Mods: The Reprocessors mod is likely broken until it gets a code update.
- All other other mods should be working fine from what we can tell.

- Unknown factor: not sure if we are clearing playeraccounts the proper amount, in multiplayer in particular. Will need testing by me.
- Unknown factor: who knows what else is wrong. This has been a tectonic shift for the game. But those are the known issues, at least.
- Unknown factor: It is probably going to be important to check that things like the Zenith Miner Mining, and any other units with particle effects (Zenith Miner Probe, etc) all are properly working and not getting stale, too.
- Unknown factor: Same deal with some of the special effects, like lightning blasts and such. Those haven't been tested yet, and are at a minor risk of having the same problem, although the code review looks good so far.

This has been an absolute slog and a ton of work, but I'm really pleased with how much more responsive the game is, and all the new power and capabilities. This is one of those items that wasn't on my radar at all, but I'm glad I was able to put in the time and get it improved. Now let's just have fingers crossed that we don't run into too many regression bugs over the next days and weeks.

More to come soon.
Enjoy!
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