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Discuss: December Patch

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JWBullfrog
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Discuss: December Patch

read the original patch notes here: https://cityoftitans.com/content/december-update-2020

comments welcome below

All Purpose Frog

Wait until you see the... nope, that would ruin the surprise.

Cinnder
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Nice QoL updates there, and

Nice QoL updates there, and thanks specifically for Right Shift. Can I assume we'll have full control over keymapping in the full game, as per the old game?

Graphics have always worked really well for me on the island, so I can't comment there other than I added a glowie bit to my character and was pleased to see the reflection in many surfaces.

Still taking a very long time to download on a fast connection that downloads entire other games in mere minutes -- I wish I knew why.

Happy Holidays!

Spurn all ye kindle.

Lothic
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Cinnder wrote:
Cinnder wrote:

Can I assume we'll have full control over keymapping in the full game, as per the old game?

We had Rednames talk about this topic just a few weeks ago in the last patch thread.

CoH player from April 25, 2004 to November 30, 2012

Iathor
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Cinnder wrote:
Cinnder wrote:

Nice QoL updates there, and thanks specifically for Right Shift. Can I assume we'll have full control over keymapping in the full game, as per the old game?

Right Shift, incidentally, is not currently a keymapping, it’s done as a direct test for the key in the code. This is why you won’t see it in the keybind options. I’m not sure what will happen if you assign one of the bindable mappings to one of the shift keys; probably will break something. As mentioned in the notes, the shift key speed increase is a temporary testing hack.

“Full control” may not be possible; there is a restriction in Unreal with keybindings to what it calls “axis mappings”, which are basically the movement and camera controls, that are normally bound to joysticks on gamepads. Keys bound to axis mappings cannot have modifier keys included in the bindings, for some reason. However, all other keybindings are to “action mappings”, which are essentially all other game actions, the current example is “Jump” in the release, but I expect all power uses will be actions, also. Action mappings can have any combination of the modifier keys included.

Unfortunately, the menu package we used for this release doesn’t support modifier keys. This is one reason why we’re looking at other options. It is also restricted to one keybind and one gamepad bind per mapping, which is why I included a second mapping for the movement keys in the release, so a second binding could be supported. This requires a bit of extra support in the code, and makes the binding UI a little ugly. The workaround doesn’t scale well in either place, so this is something else I’m looking at for other options for the menu system. Unreal itself allows multiple bindings per mapping, so this isn’t an inherent limitation. But it’s not a major issue at the moment. Any keybinding is better than none...

Cinnder wrote:

Graphics have always worked really well for me on the island, so I can't comment there other than I added a glowie bit to my character and was pleased to see the reflection in many surfaces.

We’ve seen some graphics issues on different hardware setups, the ones mentioned were corrupt objects that were causing crashes on certain systems. There was also a performance problem with the landscape system we were using on those same machines, which was not as noticeable on the early test machines. We are now using a different landscape system with considerably better performance. This should help decrease the graphics load in the bigger city map.

Cinnder wrote:

Still taking a very long time to download on a fast connection that downloads entire other games in mere minutes -- I wish I knew why.

This one is puzzling. We’ve had a few reports of the patcher stalling, but restarting it usually fixes that. Your particular experience is unique, as far as I know, but any issue like this is concerning, since there’s no telling when it might suddenly hit a much larger group. We will need to look into this in more detail if it continues.

Tech Team

Cinnder
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Aye, as stated in the update

Aye, as stated in the update it's unlikely we'll use Shift for running in the proper game anyway, so your efforts to help in the meantime are even more appreciated.

Glad you're still looking into other options -- are you saying Unreal doesn't support remapping even the basic movement keys, meaning that what you've done for us so far is a workaround, or is it just the modifier issue. I'd be amazed if an engine intended to work on PC didn't support remapping the movement keys, but it wouldn't be the first time a software project didn't provide something I consider a basic requirement (can you tell I've been frustrated with certain projects at work lately?).

Yeah, the update mentioned fixes for grfx issues, so I just wanted to rule myself out on commenting on that, since I didn't have any to begin with.

Nope, it's not the stalling issue -- just a really slow steady download. If you folks implement a launcher that pre-downloads patches, this may not be much of an issue, but it does make me curious.

Anyway, the ongoing efforts to improve things is much appreciated.

Spurn all ye kindle.

Huckleberry
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I find it hard to believe

I find it hard to believe that remapping the movement keys is unsupported in the Unreal engine. Almost everyone I know uses ESDF instead of WASD because doing so enables two more neighboring keys (W and A) that can be mapped to other actions. Surely the developers of the Unreal Engine are gamers and also do this (if they don't use peripherals that use key emulators)


I like to take your ideas and supersize them. This isn't criticism, it is flattery. I come with nothing but good will and a spirit of team-building. If you take what I write any other way, that is probably just because I wasn't very clear.
Lothic
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Huckleberry wrote:
Cinnder wrote:

I'd be amazed if an engine intended to work on PC didn't support remapping the movement keys, but it wouldn't be the first time a software project didn't provide something I consider a basic requirement

Huckleberry wrote:

I find it hard to believe that remapping the movement keys is unsupported in the Unreal engine.

I also found myself skeptical of this claim when we were discussing this topic on the previous thread but I suppose we'll have to take MWM at face value on this one.

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Iathor
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Cinnder wrote:
Cinnder wrote:

are you saying Unreal doesn't support remapping even the basic movement keys, meaning that what you've done for us so far is a workaround, or is it just the modifier issue.

It’s just an issue with modifier keys on “axis” mappings in Unreal. A basic (no modifier keys) key can be bound to those without problems, however. Unreal’s “Action” bindings support modifier keys, but not in our current menu package.

Cinnder wrote:

Nope, it's not the stalling issue -- just a really slow steady download. If you folks implement a launcher that pre-downloads patches, this may not be much of an issue, but it does make me curious.

And we now have another report of this, so we will probably ask for your help looking at this issue on the next release. The server setup we’re using right now is temporary and not designed for heavy loads; it’s possible something was going on at the server end when you and the other player ran into this. If not, it’s going to be tricky to troubleshoot, and may require capturing a packet trace to see what’s going on. I was a network researcher for 30 years, and a lot of things can cause this sort of performance issue, and many of them are tricky to track down. It’s unlikely it’s in the patcher code itself; much more likely it’s a server or network phenomenon.

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Huckleberry wrote:
Huckleberry wrote:

I find it hard to believe that remapping the movement keys is unsupported in the Unreal engine. Almost everyone I know uses ESDF instead of WASD because doing so enables two more neighboring keys (W and A) that can be mapped to other actions. Surely the developers of the Unreal Engine are gamers and also do this (if they don't use peripherals that use key emulators)

Sorry, I got too far into the tech details there, and obscured what I was saying. You can remap the movement keys (which you can do in the current release). The key just can’t be a modified key. E.g. you can bind a movement action to “s” but not “shift-s”. That’s an Unreal limitation, though I think there may be a workaround for that, even.

Ordinary actions like jump or power use may have modified keys bound to them, in Unreal, but our current menu package doesn’t support that. So right now you can bind any single key press to any of the things in the options menu, but no modified keys. This will get fixed at some point.

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Iathor wrote:
Iathor wrote:
Cinnder wrote:

Nope, it's not the stalling issue -- just a really slow steady download. If you folks implement a launcher that pre-downloads patches, this may not be much of an issue, but it does make me curious.

And we now have another report of this, so we will probably ask for your help looking at this issue on the next release. The server setup we’re using right now is temporary and not designed for heavy loads; it’s possible something was going on at the server end when you and the other player ran into this. If not, it’s going to be tricky to troubleshoot, and may require capturing a packet trace to see what’s going on. I was a network researcher for 30 years, and a lot of things can cause this sort of performance issue, and many of them are tricky to track down. It’s unlikely it’s in the patcher code itself; much more likely it’s a server or network phenomenon.

All I can do to help figure this out is to provide an anecdotal datapoint that I have never seen any CoT patches take more than 10-15 minutes to fully download. Most actually seem to finish in just a few minutes.

Apparently the patcher code itself is capable of delivering a speedy download so the problem that some people are reporting might be ISP related or due to server loads that are varied from one time to the next. Perhaps I've simply been lucky to download patches at the best "unbusy" times but given that I've done it maybe 6 or 8 times without trouble since last year seems to negate the idea that I've just "gotten lucky" every single time.

CoH player from April 25, 2004 to November 30, 2012

Huckleberry
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Iathor wrote:
Iathor wrote:

You can remap the movement keys (which you can do in the current release). The key just can’t be a modified key. E.g. you can bind a movement action to “s” but not “shift-s”. That’s an Unreal limitation, though I think there may be a workaround for that, even.

Okay. That makes total sense and is in keeping with every other game I am familiar with. In fact; I have, at times tried to use a modified key for some keypmappings in some games that don't support it. In those cases I found out because the key mapping "feature" of the UI accepts the unsupported keymap but the game doesn't recognize it during actual play. Only after trial and error did I realize it was because of the modifier.

Thanks for the clarification.


I like to take your ideas and supersize them. This isn't criticism, it is flattery. I come with nothing but good will and a spirit of team-building. If you take what I write any other way, that is probably just because I wasn't very clear.
Cinnder
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Iathor wrote:
Iathor wrote:

It’s just an issue with modifier keys on “axis” mappings in Unreal. A basic (no modifier keys) key can be bound to those without problems, however. Unreal’s “Action” bindings support modifier keys, but not in our current menu package.

OK that's not so bad then. What about modifier keys on their own and not used as modifiers? E.g. will we be able to use RCtrl for Jump?

Iathor wrote:

And we now have another report of this, so we will probably ask for your help looking at this issue on the next release. The server setup we’re using right now is temporary and not designed for heavy loads; it’s possible something was going on at the server end when you and the other player ran into this. If not, it’s going to be tricky to troubleshoot, and may require capturing a packet trace to see what’s going on. I was a network researcher for 30 years, and a lot of things can cause this sort of performance issue, and many of them are tricky to track down. It’s unlikely it’s in the patcher code itself; much more likely it’s a server or network phenomenon.

Happy to help. Just let me know when & how.

Spurn all ye kindle.

Iathor
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Cinnder wrote:
Cinnder wrote:

OK that's not so bad then. What about modifier keys on their own and not used as modifiers? E.g. will we be able to use RCtrl for Jump?

Yes, that should work now. Unreal supports use of the modifier keys as individual key binds, and it seems to work fine in the current release.

Naturally, you need to avoid conflicts between such "bare" uses of the modifier keys, with their use in key binds that include that modifier. E.g., if you bind Left Shift to something, you are likely to be unable to use it for a "shift-s" binding elsewhere. I'm not quite sure what Unreal does with that, but I suspect something will either unbind or fail to function correctly.

Right now, this issue can't come up, since the options menu doesn't support modified key binds, but it is likely to be possible in the future.

Tech Team