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Thread: DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign

  
  1. #1
    Demon Spawn Endrix's Avatar
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    Default DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign

    Hi.

    I saw that i don´t give any thread for DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign.

    I have someone completely play that?

    In map00017 "Crisis" when the Knight come the computer crashing and come the mistake massage that the keeper fx launcher have found a mistake.

    Have someone exactly the same?

  2. #2

    Default Re: DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign

    I haven't played it, but perhaps we can help if you share the keeperfx.log file after the crash. And possibly a saved game from right before the crash.

  3. #3
    Demon Spawn Endrix's Avatar
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    Default Re: DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign

    Pity!

    I have they skipped and stored :/

    In the next time i know that.

  4. #4

    Default Re: DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign

    I've played that whole campaign several times in Dungeon Keeper.
    I was surprised about the stability of the maps, more stable than most maps I made back than.

    Off course, DzjeeAr didn't code AI keepers there, which makes it much easier to keep maps stable.
    Back than, I had to throw half of the maps I made in the bin, because I couldn't repair their instability.

    If maps in that campaign create lag or lock the game, than there was a problem with FX, not with Keeper.
    Unless you've build a very large amount of traps in the game, full workshops, max amount of creatures from prison and graveyard.

  5. #5

    Default Re: DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign

    If you still have your binned maps you can dig them up. With the latest KeeperFX version the pathfinding issue is not the problem anymore it once was.

  6. #6

    Post Re: DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign

    Yes, I would read elsewhere that pathfinding issues in KeeperFX are resolved.

    I however doubt KeeperFX can solve the problems of instability in the original game.
    All original code should be redesigned to do that.

    I've had a lot of struggle with the instability issues in the original game, because many of my maps would become unplayable. This was before KeeperFX was started to be made, like 20 years ago. My only companion in mapmaking back than was Dzjeear, and we figured several things out together.
    I would also use Adikted and Unded back than, but from these editors I had to throw away more than 90%. The only map I was able to produce with the help of Unded was this one, which is visible because chickens are walking all over the place at the start. Adikted has been updated since than, and has become without failures now.

    The reason so many of my maps became unstable, from the official editor, was because I would work a lot on every map. Maybe over engineered them. But also, because I loved AI keepers, and I learned several rules to keep such maps stable. The rules are kept by the Bullfrog team, which is visible in the original maps: AI keepers never fight among each other. This means, there is either only 1 AI keeper, or 2 AI Keepers are aligned, or 2 AI Keepers are divided by rock. This is done in all maps in the original game, so the bullfrog team knew about this instability. Still, they haven't debugged it, but made maps with either allied AI Keepers aligned, or AI Keepers divided by rock.

    Another bug in the original game, is that maps become unstable when there are to many traps. This often happens in level 20, when a player is seduced to build lots of traps, than the game becomes unstable.
    Maps can also become unstable, if you build to many claimed walls, and indeed, if the pathfinding, also in digging, become complicated. We experienced this in several custom made maps we did. Or tried to do, and thus failed because unstable.

    Thomasz used this executable with its bugs as *.DLL.
    It is impossible to debug these imperfections, without refactoring the original code. Which is also impossible, because Dungeon Keeper is not open source, the code is not available.
    Maybe a very rich man will buy this code from Electronic Arts some day, hires a team to debug the Dos run original engine. Little chance for that, we will have to build and play around these bugs.
    Last edited by 0etelaer; May 16th, 2021 at 09:56.

  7. #7

    Default Re: DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign

    Well, KeeperFX actually reverse engineered a lot of the original code. The point of the dll is not to keep it forever, but only to use the functions from that have not made it into KeeperFX yet. So, version 0.1 of KeeperFX used 100% of the DK functions from the DLL and so shared all the bugs. By now, far less than half of the DK functions are still used as such there have been lots of opportunities to fix bugs from the original game.

    Originally there were 3 main issues causing instability and problems:
    1) Faulty map editors that made corrupt maps
    2) Pathfinding issues. Complex maps with different routes to different locations, especially when water/lava involved would crash, hang or have units not being able to function.
    3) Thing limit. There's just 2048 thing slots, if more things are needed, you're out of luck. So if there are lots of traps and gold piles, no room for say projectiles for attacks.


    Number 1 is handled by adikted now, Number 2 is basically handled by KeeperFX in the sense that only in extreme situations will you have units not finding their way now and no more crashes/hangs, and number 3 is still there but KeeperFX did some optimizations to reduce the number of things the game needs.
    Indeed some of the code to fully handle 3 is still not reverse engineered and not accessible. The issues you mentioned are most likely thing-limit issues. Some further improvements are possible without further reverse engineering and may appear soon.

  8. #8

    Default Re: DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign

    2048 Thing slots?
    The game can become unstable, in about 25 traps. And even if no traps are build, but the workshops are full. Full workshops will generally have less than 250 traps in them.

    There is also a max creatures amount in the game, can't remember if it was 128 or 256 creatures. Once the max creatures is reached, no imps can be created, no skeletons or vampires arise, no creatures enter through the portal. And it can sometimes make the game unstable, especially in combination with traps.
    I don't mind these limits, having less creatures gives the game more focus on the creatures personality. A gang, rather than an army.

    I also don't see how AI Keepers fighting each other, has a relation to thing slots.
    And why the game should become unstable, once the max slots are used. Max thing slots used, should make it, that no traps can be produced any more: Not that the game becomes unstable.
    I do agree that the game become unstable fast, once many thing slots are used. But it seems to me, that the game has problems with code in deciding priorities, not sure. Reaching max slots should not create instability.

    If KeeperFX could make AI Keepers fighting each other stable, that would be a huge improvement. Interesting maps could be made, where a player enters a war between keepers.
    But Bullfrog wouldn't even succeed in that, as explained in my previous post, they just published maps around the bugs.
    I had Dungeon Keeper's original campaign fail many times while playing, also after the patch. Deeper Dungeons was a bit more stable, but all maps there have no AI keeper, or only one.

    It could be though, that some experienced programmer immediately sees what's the problem there, and can solve it fast.
    Other games also have AI opponents fight each other. With no problems.

  9. #9

    Default Re: DzjeeAr's 25-level campaign

    There's no problem with 25 traps. You probably just thought that because by the time a keeper has 25 traps there's lots of other stuff going on too. The creature limit is 255.
    There's several deeper dungeon maps with enemy keepers.

    In KeeperFX, multiple keepers fighting each other is no problem, nor is having traps. Maxing out the thing limit (yes, 2048) gives issues still, like the original game, but that does not involves crashing.

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