Remember last week when I said we were pretty close to restoring original functionality? Turns out that ate up this entire week. Technically not all the original functionality is there yet in a couple places, but only in the places where there is also the need to add new functionality. Not a ton to talk about, it’s pretty much just put your head down and keep at it work. Getting closer to more interesting stuff. Right now my goal is to get a rough draft of the new map system playable and decide what’s needed to improve it. Have plenty of planned changes for it, but it’s nice to get a feel for it before going through with them.
We’re getting pretty close to restoring functionality back to what it was, while also using the new style of map movement. But that’s actually just the beginning. I have to adjust everything to compensate for the new system. Most of the old system relied on players being on an exact tile to engage with stuff, but now that movement is random “pass-by” will become more prominent for quests and the like. Attacking other players or joining their battles will instead become range based instead of requiring the same tile (which will be pretty interesting when PVP becomes a more legitimate option to catch up to players who are ahead). Lots of adjustments like that.
Putting the new system together has been very promising so far. It’s still too early to be certain, but I can picture everything in my head now and that’s tremendously relieving compared to when there were several blind spots in the design. At this point the game just seems more like a ton of work that needs to be done, rather than groping around in the dark hoping to get lucky. I’m just anxious to see the theory applied at this point, and the closer I get the better it seems.
The work has commenced on converting over to the new map style. While it was entirely possible to rewire the existing systems to support the new stuff, I went ahead and took this opportunity to clean up the code a bit. The map stuff was certainly the worst thing in the game, I had two different generations of system hot wired to work together. One of those systems had been mangled to work in ways it was never designed for. The numerous changes to maps over the years have taken their toll, especially considering it was rushed to completion so it wasn’t in a great state to start with. I’m not so much throwing away the old code so much as completely restructuring it. It feels great. Like lifting an albatross off my neck. While I’m adding a whole lot of extra work if we ever decide to revert back to the old system, I don’t really care because if this new system doesn’t work out there won’t be enough time to try anything else anyway.
As a result, the process of building the new map style is a little slower than it might otherwise have been. But I think it’ll be playable this month pretty easily. The rework will probably make it much faster to add new things to the map as well.