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v1.2.1 General Feedback
03-30-2013, 04:16 AM
Post: #1
v1.2.1 General Feedback
This is the thread that members of the SO beta testing group should use to report bugs discovered while testing v1.2.1.

Posting this a little early, but my goal is to get the beta out today (Friday March 29).



Testers! We have several new people, so here's what you should expect:

1) You will get an email from TestFlight. In that email is an install/download button. Tapping it will install an app named "BETA" with the SO icon.

2) Even though we are using a new MP server, I am still requiring GC log in and using that identification for your log in to the SmartFox server. Long story short, you still need to worry about logging into your sandbox GC account. When you go to multiplayer in the BETA, you need to create a sandbox GC account if you do not already have one (you cannot use your real GC account).

3) GameCenter login is NOT REQUIRED for Cloud AI. To test Cloud AI just go into the game options and turn it on. When playing SP games, there will be a Cloud AI icon in the lower right corner of the screen when turns are processing. If it is there, Cloud AI is on and your turns are processing on the server. if it is blinking, Cloud AI is on but the turns are failing to process on the server (I will work to improve this in later beta versions to make it more obvious). if its not there at all, then you do not have Cloud AI turned on.

4) REPORT ALL ISSUES IN THIS FORUM THREAD. Do not send me direct email, do not use the TF feedback option. By posting on the forum other testers will read it, and chime in whether it is the same for them or not. If you email me directly, we lose all of that interaction.

5) For SP player, use the in-game bug reporting system by tapping the version number in the credits screen. For MP games, there is now a bug report button of the flip side of the game chat.

5) If you want to discuss/chat/theorize changes to a something, CREATE A NEW THREAD IN THIS RESEARCH LAB SUB-FORUM. This keeps in-depth discussions out of this thread, and keeps everything a little cleaner.

6) This beta will be MUCH BUGGIER than previous betas. So much has changed, there are bound to be little issues cropping up all over. Just a heads up, don't take anything for granted.




New "Tournament" Leader Mode

New Tournament leader option combines the ability to ban leaders with the new concept of contract service length. Instead of purchasing leaders permanently, you "rent" their services for a specific number of turns. When the turns are up, the leader immediately leaves your service and will go back into the auction rotation. This mode adds another layer of strategic thinking to leaders, and should result in a lot of fun!

Cloud AI

Under the game options is a new one called "Cloud AI". it will ship labelled as "beta" for a few versions, and will be off by default. Turning on Cloud AI will have your single player turns processed "in the cloud", but should have the following benefits for SP games:

Speed: Game turns, especially for massive games and older devices, should process much faster.

Stability: Traditional "crashes when I pressed turn" should no longer happen. In the past this included memory crashes due to turn processing, actual bug crashes in turn processing, and more. If your turn DOES crash when processing on the server, I get an immediate and automated email report. I can then go and fix the bug on the server, without requiring an app update.

Better AI: A few changes have already been made, but this is more a feature for the future. Can changes and improvements can be developed, tested, and published live without the need for an app update.

Optional: Processing your turns in the cloud will forever be optional, and never a requirement. This retains your ability to play without an internet connection, or to continue playing in case of server failure.

Renovated Multiplayer

Out entire multiplayer system has been renovated, upgraded, and should eventually kick the ass of any 4X turn-based space game out there.

Continuous Asynchronous Multiplayer: Players may now play their turns at the same time, without having to "pass the turn stick" around. Once all player turns are submitted, the game will be advanced on the server and everyone will receive a push notification.

New Turn Timers: There are now two new options for putting time limited on multiplayer turns. "Casual" gamers can enjoy leisurely games that advance at least once every 24 hours. "Tournament" players can enjoy a system based on the Fischer Delay clock scheme, which adds a measure of time management into your play style.

Integrated Friends / Suggested Opponents: Your GameCenter friends who play Starbase Orion will automatically show up in the new interface. In addition, the server will make suggestions for possible opponents who you've never met. Right now this is random, but in the future will be based on player skill level and activity. Expand your network of friends by playing games against suggested players!

Control over AI/Player teams: There is a complete new UI for populating new games with players. Tap players from the list in the left to add them to the game on the right (this includes Computer players). If you chose a team game, the list on the right is split in two to show you exactly which player is on which team. No more confusing "odds vs evens"!

AI Replacement of Dropped Players: Need to leave a game for good? No problem, the system will automatically replace you with an AI player to finish up.

Reduced Cheating / Player Ranking: With a centralized server we can crack down on cheating even more. Player wins and losses are being tracked, and we'll bring this out as true, meaningful player ranking.

Game Rollback: Experiencing a problem with your multiplayer game? You can submit a bug report and request to have the game rolled back to a previous turn. All previous turns, for every game, are being stored on the server.

Post-Game Review: Touching "VICTORY" or "DEFEAT" now drops you back into the game, with complete vision so you can explore and review the game.

Real-time, Persistent Chat: Chat in real-time with other players, either in "The Space Bar" lobby or in per-game lobbies. All chat messages are persistent, so you can leave messages in there for other players to read when they come online.

Custom Game Titles: New games are given a randomly generated name when they are created, but you can change the name to something more custom at any time.

Galactic News: News, stories, information, and more in this in-app newsletter.

Game Migration: Migrate your old games to the new system with the touch of a button.

Detailed Push Notifications: Apple Push Notifications will be more descriptive than they have in the past. We've just tipped the iceberg here, and will continue to improve.
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03-30-2013, 04:16 AM (This post was last modified: 03-30-2013 04:26 AM by rocco.)
Post: #2
RE: v1.2.1 General Feedback
In addition, there are features that still need to be implemented before this release. They are:

1) Player Profiles: Player should be able to enter some info about themselves, maybe add an avatar/photo. Most importantly I want them to be able to set timezone, or preferred play window. This will be used by the player suggestions system to suggest people that are more time compatible.

2) Private Messages: These are currently missing completely. Look for them in a future beta.

3) A word on automated match-making. I don't see traditional automated matchmaking ever working for SO. My plan is to open up player profiles for browsing (think of this as an in-app version of the "find an opponent" thread on the forum), and to use the "suggested players" system to introduce players to other compatible players. Current implementation of suggested players is very simple (just random people who you are not friends with). I will be improving on this in the weeks to come.
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03-30-2013, 04:39 AM (This post was last modified: 03-30-2013 04:42 AM by Mezmorki.)
Post: #3
RE: v1.2.1 General Feedback
Cool - can't wait!

I haven't ventured into the waters of MP yet with SO (I know ... I know .... ) so with the new beta I'd be keen to get into the action and try out it.

EDIT: Quick question, will I need to uninstall the normal SO version to add the beta? Or can they both be installed? I don't care either way, just curious what the standard practice is.
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03-30-2013, 04:43 AM
Post: #4
RE: v1.2.1 General Feedback
(03-30-2013 04:39 AM)Mezmorki Wrote:  EDIT: Quick question, will I need to uninstall the normal SO version to add the beta? Or can they both be installed? I don't care either way, just curious what the standard practice is.

You can safely have them both installed at the same time. One will be called "BETA" instead of "Orion".
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03-30-2013, 02:13 PM
Post: #5
RE: v1.2.1 General Feedback
Just when I didn't think there was much else to improve in SO, you clobber us over the head with this mammoth update... Wink

Haven't had the chance to explore the beta yet. Will the new multiplayer system include this suggestion, my slightly different interpretation of contiguous multiplayer?

(Basically, will the new simultaneous turn system also mean that we are not forced out to the main menu upon completing our turns, allowing us to play the game as a real-time turn-based multiplayer game when we so desire?)
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03-30-2013, 02:37 PM
Post: #6
RE: v1.2.1 General Feedback
(03-30-2013 02:13 PM)Ayjona Wrote:  Just when I didn't think there was much else to improve in SO, you clobber us over the head with this mammoth update... Wink

Haven't had the chance to explore the beta yet. Will the new multiplayer system include this suggestion, my slightly different interpretation of contiguous multiplayer?

(Basically, will the new simultaneous turn system also mean that we are not forced out to the main menu upon completing our turns, allowing us to play the game as a real-time turn-based multiplayer game when we so desire?)

Haven't tried it yet (bout to load it up, just finished downloading), but yes, from my understanding that'll be the case, at least if you're both online at the same time.

GC ID - VanderLegion, GMT-9. Sandbox GC ID (Beta) - VanderLegion
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03-30-2013, 02:37 PM
Post: #7
RE: v1.2.1 General Feedback
Looks great!

Just started a two-player MP game. I picked Advanced Age, but it is normal. Picked spiral, gave me cluster.

Imported games chat logs don't seem to bring over everything, but do seem to allow you to see what non-allies were posting.

Lemme know if you need me to submit a game.
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03-30-2013, 02:55 PM
Post: #8
RE: v1.2.1 General Feedback
Keyboard should disappear after you send a chat message. Sometimes (mainly in chat rooms outside of game) you might want to type multiple messages, but in game you typically send one message and that's it. Right now, you send and keyboard stays open, so you have to tap somewhere on screen to dismiss it.

For some reason, the keyboard in general is acting wonky for chat. The double-spacebar to do a period and a space doesn't work, it just adds 2 spaces. The punctuation marks etc on the symbols page that usually kick it back to letters don't do so, it just stays on the symbols page until you swap back manually.

The + button for multiplayer should have a cancel or back option. Right now, when you hit it, it pulls up a full screen (basically) modal with create game and add new friend buttons. If you hit it by accident, you have to hit one of those two buttons before you can hit back to get to the menu again, you should be able to hit a back button (or just tap anywhere but one of those buttons) to dismiss the modal.

GC ID - VanderLegion, GMT-9. Sandbox GC ID (Beta) - VanderLegion
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03-30-2013, 04:02 PM
Post: #9
RE: v1.2.1 General Feedback
(03-30-2013 02:37 PM)VanderLegion Wrote:  Haven't tried it yet (bout to load it up, just finished downloading), but yes, from my understanding that'll be the case, at least if you're both online at the same time.

It should be close, but not quite there. If you hit turn, and you can't immediately take your next turn it puts you in the "out of game, game chat room". But since both players have in game, real time chat you could in theory stay in game until your friend says they're ready (minimizing your time spent in the out of game, game chat room).
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03-30-2013, 04:16 PM (This post was last modified: 03-30-2013 04:44 PM by VanderLegion.)
Post: #10
RE: v1.2.1 General Feedback
The empire age and galaxy shape options DO work in single player. So its just mp that theyre broken
Minor issue, but I'm showing a badge icon of 2 on the beta version when i have 0 games that are my turn. I have 8 games under New Games waitinfg for other people to get em started back up (migrated games from last beta) and 1 game on Other Players Turn
So looks like galaxy shape and empire age aren't the only things that are broken. I just noticed that my "Huge Homeworld" is only a Large planet (and I apparently killed a few colonists without paying attention when I tried to move them there from my other starting planets).

GC ID - VanderLegion, GMT-9. Sandbox GC ID (Beta) - VanderLegion
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