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Online Thomy

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Updates September 16th - Skilling Pets & Many Minor Overhauls
« on: September 16, 2021, 08:35:09 am »
Hey guys,

In today's update I have a lot of smaller reworks and improvements that I've seen as problematic over the past months. One of the major aims was to improve the game on slower devices because it just was not performing as well as it actually could. Most of these smaller updates already went live a while ago as incremental client patches. The largest part of this update is Skilling Pets, which can now be obtained randomly while training skills.

Skilling Pets
You can now find Skilling pets while skilling. The chances of obtaining those are quite rare but do scale linearly with the amount of experience gained. Additional modifiers are included when being a member and also the amount of total experience points in a specific skill. The modifier for receiving a combat pet are halved because experience gains are generally higher than those of non-combat skills. You can receive pets multiple times and having a full inventory will just drop the pet item on the floor. You can find a list of all skilling pets in your collection log.

Below's a screenshot of all pets:

I'm sure you'll find your favorite pets. Good luck hunting for those! :)

I've added many more items that can be deconstructed. That filled up the skilling interface quite a lot and I decided to group certain items together. There's no longer every bronze item listed with every energy you get but instead a group of bronze items. You can still find the list with all details on the wiki though.

Item Sprites
The way item sprites were calculated was a bit questionable and also very outdated. In order to fix some bugs in the old system I decided to rewrite it. Item icons are now rendered as 64x64 pixel sprites and downscaled instead of 32x32 pixels. This results in much better visual clarity of items and fixes visual problems that existed previously.

I've identified a few issues with shadows regarding their performance and the way they looked unless being on the highest setting. I've reworked the shadow filtering technique from a simple anti-aliasing window to a poisson filter. This results in sharper shadows with increased performance. This gives us higher quality shadows for a bit less of GPU power required than before. It improves gameplay with shadows on lower-end devices and increases visual quality on high-end machines. I basically modernized the way shadows are smoothed out. I have also implemented cascading shadow maps. That is a technique which renders the shadows of distant objects in lower quality. This allowed me to put shadows on basically every model on higher graphic settings. We now have nicer shadows that render performant. Let me know what you think!

Sprite Positions & Minimap
I have reworked the internal Sprite positioning system which now supports comma values. That results in much smoother minimap transitions, experience drops, hit splats, etc. Any kind of moving text or image is affected by this. This change allowed me to create a zoom option for the minimap. You can use your mouse wheel while on top of the minimap to zoom in and out. There's a limit of how far you can zoom out because you might hit too much of unloaded terrain. Clicking the compass sets the minimap zoom back to its original value.

I have rewritten the camera system. It was tedious to use for mathematical calculations and also being juddery. You could feel this especially when moving around or zooming in/out. Moreover, the game was doing the same calculation many times per rendered frame. The new system brings better performance for slower systems and a smoother experience when using camera controls.

Boss Drops
It has recently been pointed out that there is no real advantage trying to solo a boss. I'm introducing a minimum and maximum drops system for bosses. You will get at least two drops for killing a group or hardmode boss. That means a solo attempt will result in 2 rolls on the drop table rewarding the much more difficult fight. I understand that this increases the amount of drops for solo kills. However, bear in mind that duo or trio kills are much quicker and result in way more drops than soloing! This is a small QoL improvement for trying to solo group content. The resource drop amounts for hardmode bosses are now also scaled by 120%. If the boss drops 100k in normal mode, it will drop 120k in hardmode.

Login & Reconnecting
I've reworked the way you login or reconnect to the game. The process was sped up by a lot and will now transfer all data required immediately when logging in. This results in a much faster initial load as well as smoother reconnects should your internet connection get interrupted. Online timers such as being in combat or in the wilderness are unaffected by this change. The rework is about quicker and smoother logins.

Game fixes / changes:
  • The amount for alch warnings can now be configured by right-clicking either low or high level alchemy spells.
  • Combat power of Demon wand has been increased. It is the most expensive weapon to use and should also reflect its high cost by providing more damage. I've increased Magic accuracy by 15 and strength by 4.
  • The Chaos elemental's combat was visually updated. Attack animations no longer walking resulting in weird positions. Its attack speed was also nerfed and combat power slightly buffed to remain equally strong.
  • Item bonuses for dragon full helm (sp) and dragon platebody sp) have been fixed. There was also an issue with poisoned dragon spear bonuses that got fixed.
  • K'ril now counts as demon when using Demon aura.
  • King Black Dragon collection log now contains the construction heads item as well.
  • Collection fairies can be bought for having 25%, 50%, 75% and 100% completion of the Collection log from the Event Point store.
  • Mining rune essences is back to its old speed.
  • Nex is now considered a demon.
  • The bonuses from Demon slayer aura have been increased from 15% to 20%.

Engine fixes / changes:
  • In-game time is now properly synced with server time again.
  • Water configuration for areas above water (Pest Control boat) has been fixed.
  • Orb timers are now displayed in minutes to cause even less visual clutter. They will show seconds once reaching values < 1 minute. So you definitely know when exactly an effect expires.
  • Fairy wings wield model has been fixed.
  • Items kept on death interface now shows up to 9 items instead of up to 6.
  • A bug was found and fixed in the client's asset updater which could cause certain models not to be downloaded and displayed properly. I've also put a limit on parallel asset downloads to avoid overloading network traffic. Loading times are unaffected by this change.
  • The color picker for completionist cape is now updating the interface's model colors immediately after selecting a color. You no longer need to hit the Confirm button to have a preview. The right-section hue image for color selection is now also constant. This makes it easier to select a specific color or when changing color tones.
  • There was a problem with faulty sprite data that needed to be refreshed. The game now automatically detects faulty images on startup and rebuilds the image cache when necessary. Prior to this fix the game would always re-download images and store them on the disk. Images aren't too big but the game would continously store unnecessary data. A few megabytes will be freed up for some computers. ;)
  • The cursor code has been overhauled and performance was improved. In some cases (magic spells) the cursors would keep reloading putting some unnecessary stress on the GPU.

I hope you'll be enjoying this update. It took a while to put everything together and get it to a release. What would you think of letting your pets drink dye bottles to change their appearance in a future update?

All the best,
« Last Edit: September 16, 2021, 08:58:55 am by Thomy »
The following users liked this post: Est Mauler, Bluestorm, Lv Persavoz, Hostage, Eliminator, Ameer, Rawad10

Offline Lv Persavoz

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Re: Updates September 16th - Skilling Pets & Many Minor Overhauls
« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2021, 04:47:48 am »
The skilling pets are dope!

Online Thomy

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Re: Updates September 16th - Skilling Pets & Many Minor Overhauls
« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2021, 12:02:25 pm »
The skilling pets are dope!

Thanks! Got a favorite one? :D
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