The Wise are not the only guardians of knowledge

The Solstice release has now been submitted to Apple and Google, windows versions to follow over the next few days. From this point forward I intend to produce four released a year with either new features or just maintenance. They will all coincide with the Solstices or Equinoxes.

Version 2.0.5 (44)

  1. ADDED: panel_map_detailed – tool tip for location – press
  2. ADDED: panel_options – gameplay rules
  3. ADDED: Rule: Impassable Mountains
  4. ADDED: Rule: AI Impassable Mountains
  5. ADDED: Rule: Sole Mountaineer
  6. ADDED: Rule: Add mountain passes
  7. ADDED: Rule: LoM – Unrecruitable Fey
  8. ADDED: DDR – Fast tunnels
  9. FIXED: Character Time Shader
  10. FIXED: DDR – Battle Algorithm
  11. FIXED: DDR – Race preferred terrain for movement
  12. FIXED: DDR – Cowardly lords attacking
  13. FIXED: Android Rotation

The fixes or all rather straight forward and self explanatory. The main additions are the inclusion of the new gameplay rules, so here is a quick note on what they do.

Impassable Mountains

This is for both LoM and DDR. This stop player controlled players from entering mountain locations. In DDR it will also stop you from approaching and lord who is in a mountain location or entering battle in one. Also Giants and Dwarves can still traverse mountain ranges.

AI Impassable Mountains

As above but for AI characters.

Sole Mountaineer

With impassable mountains enabled, this can be enabled to allow a lord with no army to still pass through mountains.

Add mountain passes

Currently LoM only – punches some holes in the mountain ranges to allow access to areas that would become unreachable with impassable mountains.

Unrecruitable Fey

In LoM this affectively takes the fey out of the game. For that added level of difficulty.

Fast Tunnels

In DDR characters will move faster through tunnels than previously, making them more of an advantage. Dwarves will get an extra boost.

** Known Issues **

With combinations of impassable mountains, it is possible that a sole lord or a dwarf could recruit another lord within within either a mountain range or an inaccessible area. This would then mean that the recruited lord would not be able to move. This will be resolved in the next update. The work around is to not recruit lords in such a location.

Luxor nodded his reluctant acceptance of the truth and their talk turned to Midnight

With the re-release of Doomdark’s Revenge and The Lords of Midnight that concludes the last few fraught years of bringing Midnight back from the mobile graveyard caused by Marmalade getting out of the SDK game.

I won’t deny that it’s been a painful process and not one I really want to go through again… and yet… The release is not without it’s problems. I’m not convinced that there isn’t memory crash bug still there caused by the current Cocos2dx SDK. Thanks to all the testers that have helped out over the last few months, I think I have reduced the frequency but can’t be sure. It might just be down to the length of time you play and the size of device that you have.

But, I think the only way to solve the issue is to change the SDK – and I just don’t have that in me.

So, what next.

First, I need to upload new versions of the Lords of Midnight to bring its engine up to date with Doomdark’s Revenge. There are a few small changes that were added during that release that could do with being released into LoM – just having a few Apple issues at the moment with the upload.

Here’s what will be in that release…

Version 2.0.2 (42)

  1. [desktop] Added cursor sizes (small/medium/large)

Version 2.0.2 (41)

  1. fix crash caused by too many armies at a location
  2. panel_think – adjust page indicator size dependent on number of pages

Version 2.0.2 (39)

  1. Return graffiti easter egg
  2. Add confirm night option
  3. panel_look – Add drag down gesture to moves
  4. panel_look – Add drag up gesture for map
  5. [desktop] Add mouse cursor images
  6. [desktop] Consolidate ESC key across all screens
  7. [desktop] Tidy shortcut keys across all screens
  8. [Android] panel_mainmenu Hardware back button now performs Exit
  9. [mobile] Tweak scale of buttons

Version 2.0.2 (38)

  1. Fixed: panel_think – adjust UI on phone
  2. Fixed: potential memory leaks that could be causing crashes

After that I will take a break from this code base. There are a couple of small things that I would like to put back that are missing but that I didn’t feel were critical for the release. I may well add them over time here and there when I find myself in the mood, but I won’t guaranty anything.

  1. [mobile] Pinch and Zoom on the map
  2. Compass Gadget
  3. [desktop] scrolling indicators on popup pages
  4. [desktop] arrow indicators for scrolling on think pages
  5. [desktop] Next/Previous buttons on scrolling pages
  6. [mobile] Vibrate
  7. Review the guide

There are three things that I will be focusing on from hereon in.

  1. Rewrite the engine under c# – this is a long term project in order to make the engine more robust for the future and to make more options available to me. The first is to just straight take the engine to Unity but the other is to also take it online for multi-player. More details to follow in future posts.
  2. Use the current engine to research and develop the new Landscaping needed for The Citadel. The Citadel needs water. I was playing with this technique a few years back but it wasn’t quite gelling. It works fine in a flip screen environment but not so good when the panorama is moving. However, I think with the changes made in order to release using Cocos2dx I’m keen to get back to it.
  3. The Citadel Novel/Game research. Drew’s roadmap currently has The Citadel slated as a 2023 release so we are going to need to get together to work on the details a little more than we did on LoM and DDR. There is going to need to be far more game research which is needed for the book but also for any release that I intend. For one thing the map needs a lot of filling out with details that were sadly missing in the original release.
The Bloodmarch - Northwest corner
The Bloodmarch – Northwest corner

Doomdark could choose from many roads after gaining the Plains

So phase one of the new release is almost complete. Version 2.0.2 (36) of The Lords of Midnight is now available for iPhone, OSX, and Windows. You can download OSX from the App Store or you can get it from here along with the Windows version.

On iOS there is one known issue and that is a random crash caused by the move from OpenGL to Metal – a requirement enforced by Apple. You never lose any data and a restart of the game will take you right back in to where you were. If you are experiencing this problem then it is possible that turning off transitions in the options may solve or delay the problem.

Unfortunately it seems that the Cocos2dx has an issue here and the SDK has not been updated in two years, which makes me think it is nearly as good as dead – which leaves me in another tricky situation.

The suggestion is that I can move to a more updated Fork of Cocos2dx called ADXE. In theory it should be a small migration, but I’m just not up to it right now. Maybe I will give it a quick go one weekend when the mood takes me.

So I have made the decision to move on for now to phase two which is to get Doomdark’s Revenge release. Hopefully this shouldn’t take too long as it was already running in the new engine, I just need to check over a few things. I have pushed test version for iOS and OSX and will follow with Windows and Android real soon.

Sign up for testing

This does leave me vulnerable as the crash bug is probably frequent enough that I might start to get complaints and review ratings will start to decrease. However until I see how bad the crash is in the wild across multiple devices and os versions, it’s hard for me to gauge. I just hope that those of you have been following my progress and are therefore reading this will just take the crash on the chin for a while.

As later phases of my plan involve a complete re-write of the engine to c# and the potential move to unity (which is already under way), then I feel compelled to get Doomdark’s Revenge released and then focus on the rewrite. Because with the new engine will come many many new and shiny features…