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Asherons Call: A Halloween Style Grab Bag of Dev Q & A (Part 1 of 2)

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1 November 2002 9:15 pm

Question: Avernus- - Rumor has it that a graphics update may be coming to AC1. Answer: Orion-Turbine - Your rumor mills are always so much better than ours. So far as I know at this time there is no such thing planned.

Question: ipeacefrog - What is the future of AC1? You can't buy it any more. Microsoft's site says that it is no longer for sale. And it's near impossible to find in the stores. It's listed on Amazon but when someone tried to order it, it was not shipped due to being out of stock. Can we get some info on this? Answer: Orion-Turbine - The future is that we continue to provide monthly events, more changes to keep the game dynamic and thrilling and host of new ideas that open more and more on the world of Auberean, showing the influence and changes made to the face of Dereth by the Isparians who now make it their home. The future is bright.

Question: The_Last_Blademaster - Problems with Terese of the Swamp Garden? I've noticed that Terese, the hippie NPC in the Swamp Garden Dungeon near Yanshi, has gotten quite stingy lately. Taking half a dozen green seeds to her used to yield anywhere from four to ten plants, depending upon the kind of shreth the seeds came from. Answer: Orion-Turbine - Yes. There were problems. We think we have ironed them out for November.

Question: Wei_Ti-Ka - Hi devs, When night falls, it's really difficult to see the chess boards. Could we perhaps get some lightposts around them? Answer: Sean_Huxter - The "invisible" building idea is what I've been toying with, but that's not as easy as it sounds. The invisible walls around Gaerlan's citadel are not the same. The worst complication with that is the camera movement. It would completely block players from being able to move their cameras around at will, to get the angle they want. So no good solution presents itself yet. I have some more thinking to do... And no, torches do not work on the landscape. Just indoors. In buildings and dungeons.

Question: Trimfect - Can we expect tunnels in the future instead of portals? Answer: Sean_Huxter - This has nothing to do with landblocks for islands. If anything, this gives us MORE room, since the dungeon is actually part of the landblock the entrance is in, and no longer in the ocean somewhere where an island could be placed. Yes, you'll probably see more of these in future, since we now have a tool to do it. This is a holy grail for us. We've wanted to do this from day one, but have not had the time it took to devote effort into making a tool to do it. Thanks to two of our team, Sean Dickinson and Todd Berkebile, we can now do it. And it's only through their dogged determinism (ie: stubbornness) that it became possible. So now that we have the tool, and it was so long coming, it would be foolish not to use it.

Question: Eddie_the_Crazy - How many deaths do you need in order to get the Wi Flag? Answer: Sean_Huxter - I'm pretty sure MY character could probably craft one... :-)

  • editor note* Further in the thread it states the required death count is 500 or more.

Question: KainetheDragoon - Bug with chess. My friend and I were playing. I got into a "Check" situation, and the system counted it as "Check Mate" and I lost all my guys. I had could have moved my king out of check, and then he would have had two options. Kill my queen, and get his queen killed. Or cause a stalemate. I should not have lost this match.. Answer: Sean_Huxter - I'm guessing a knight was in the way or something. I've played quite a bit, and it is very intelligent at figuring out check-mate. I accidentally check-mated one guy. I had failed to consider my knight. I thought I had about three moves left, when they all fell over dead. But my knight was in position to prevent the king from moving out of check.

Question: -Hokanu- - Forced Remote Client Crash to desktop bug. Possible Exploit? I've had this happen twice now, and I think I can reproduce it with a little fiddling, since the circumstances were fairly restrictive. Essentially, you can force someone to crash to desktop, with only a little unwitting assistance from them. Where does one report this? Answer: Sean_Huxter - PM me. I'll forward it to the coders.

Question: Pyreal_Gnat - The staff graphic update was much appreciated. I don't know who was behind the OK for doing the new artwork, but the artists did a really good job. Thank you, from the bottom of both my Gharun'dum character's hearts. =) Answer: Sean_Huxter - If you're asking me if I'm biased towards Gharu'ndim, the answer is no. Nor is Greg, who created the masks. I play only Sho characters myself. But the approval of the masks is reached by concensus by the designers and myself. We think all three masks are cool.

Question: Patrick785 - Why cant you guys fix the radar bug? Answer: Sean_Huxter - The bug has been fixed on our end. Now it just has to wait for the next update to be fixed. No, it's not likely fixing this bug will hinder our progress on the next event. Since it's done and all... and took about 8 minutes.

Question: piejack - is there a way to 'turn off' the rain? My house is in the desert of Al-Arqas, and I notice it rains waaay too much, and I want to turn it off. Is there a way? Answer: Sean_Huxter - Actually, this past event I halved the number of rainy days you should get. 80%? Riiiight...

Question: Korvus_Korax - A question for Artistic Mathematicians! I like the particle effects in AC. Unfortunately, I've been staring at them for God knows how long and a question has been nagging at me. Is it possible to revamp some of the particle systems we use in everyday casting? Answer: Sean_Huxter - Our particle system is fairly rudimentary. It allows for uni-directional "tossing" of a particle. A particle will adhere to certainr rules, but I do not have the power to change the particle's properties once it's fired. So I can't send it out, then back, or walk it through a series of keyframes. Once thrown, the particle has little else it can do but follow the one rule it was given until it dies.


Asherons Call: A Halloween Style Grab Bag of Dev Q & A (Part 2 of 2)

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Question: illusion24 - ATTN SEAN: Serious graphics bug that has driven me NUTS! This point is: beds. Beds in AC are criminally attrocious. 1) They're *disgusting.* Have you looked at a bed lately? If not, I recommend it. As you will notice, your top sheet is covered in various shades of grey grime. Now I realize that in AC we have a relatively primative, middle ages society, but if we're advanced enough to have indoor plumbing in our meeting halls, then dammit all, we should be advanced enough to wash our bedsheets! 2) (This is my big big BIG point) BEDS DEFY THE LAWS OF LOGIC BY PROTRUDING INTO THE WALLS OF HOUSES. The parallax error I get while walking around a bed in a cottage/villa/whatever makes me dizzy. I get so confused about reality that I start trying to put my real-life furniture into the walls. But guess what: it doesn't work BECAUSE IN REALITY 2 OBJECTS CANNOT INHABIT THE SAME EXACT SPACE AT THE SAME EXACT TIME! Sean, I implore you: save the physical integrity of our universe. Pull our beds out of the walls. Before I am driven to madness. And for the love of all that soft and furry, please clean our bedsheets! Answer: Sean_Huxter - It's actually impossible to remove the bed from the wall, because all floor hooks are the same. ie: I can put floor hooks on the floor of any room in hopes MOST things look right. SOME things, however, are intended to go on certain hooks, and will not look good on others. That's something we can't get around. I can't place all floor hooks just so the bed looks right, because then the desk and chairs won't look right, etc. etc. etc... So use whichever hook makes the bed look best for you.

Question: -Zoth- - Mage crits up? Answer: srand - Clarification: The rate of magic crits was not increased this month. This was mentioned as an adjunct to the Life Magic tweaks, and of those tweaks, only the mana C changes were in October. (In the future, remind me not to release info about future plans right before an update. It just confuses people.)

Question: Zestryl - Srand, How hard would it be to code two new spells? After hunting the new Golems with a fellow consisting of two mages, an Archer (wow, when he joined they fell like rain) and an Axer, I think we need a new Monster Only Spell. As one of the mages, I am used to getting debuffed. Baffled, Feebleminded, Weakness, and Slowed. I am also used to being inepted, Life, War, now Critter. But I have never seen a monster inept a Meleer or Archer with the appropriate inept. It was said that this was due to the inability of the AI to know what it was getting hit with. Answer: srand - I believe that this would require a significant, although not impossible, amount of coding. Right now, there are two ways we can set a spell -- to affect one skill/attribute/secondary attribute, or to affect all skills/attributes/secondary attributes. (That is, there are spells that affect all your attributes, but none that affect both quickness and coordination but not the other attributes.) Spells only have space for one skill/attribute/secondary attribute name, and the "all X" flag is specially coded. So there would be some underlying systems changes that would need to be made to grant spells the power you are asking for.

Question: hungwell - Attn Devs: Tinker request. Please make velvet and oak unusable on missile weapons. Iron gives you a message that you cant use in on them. Please make velvet and oak do the same. Answer: srand - You already can't use velvet on missile weapons. You get the targeting indicator -- because I don't have fine enough granularity of item types on the client to avoid it -- but the material will not actually be applied to the missile weapon. When you try, you get a message like: "You can't apply Salvaged Velvet to the Ivory Yumi!" Oak, on the other hand, is perfectly valid for use on missile weapons.

Question: Cuttlery - Is there a way to get ahold of a Admin or Dev besides urgent assistance? I have a very very very odd problem happening with one of my accounts. I tried Urgent assistance multiple times the last 2 days but never get an answer, and I think this is something the devs would want to know about. Answer: srand - First, to answer the question you asked: - If you need urgent assistant right this instant in the game, use urgent assistance. - If you need to report a bug or oddity, use the bug page at: bugs.zone.com. - If you have a question about a possible bug or oddity, you are welcome to PM me here and I will try to answer. I cannot give you in-game assistance, and I expect that you will report any bugs you ask me about on the bug page as well.

Now, to the odd behavior you saw: I didn't think that what you described was at all possible, but a short conversation with the server team taught me that it can technically happen in just the right situation. There is no danger to either of your characters, and you can probably fix it by moving to an area of the world handled by a different subserver. And lastly: You say that you had a character stuck on WE. Could you tell me when this happened, and the exact circumstances surrounding the incident? Is the character still stuck? I've just checked, and WE is currently doing just fine, but as you might imagine we are keeping a close eye out for the symptoms we saw before the last hotfix.

Question: Turin-Turambar - Confused Greatly About Critical Hits And Critical Blow. I was in an OHN today burning up some SIKs (PLZ make SIKs stack). My axe skill was at 397 and using a CB Hammer with a damage of 29.15-53 at +25% attack. I was not imperiling anything and was at the SIK chest so was fighting only Soldiers and there were no variations in my skills since no magic was in play. With swings always at the lowest power setting I had crits on Soldiers ranging from a low of 130, to a mid range of 150, to a high of 184. I had understood CB added a fixed multiplier (based on skill) to the max crit damage but this does not seem to be the case.

PS: I was always swinging low - if that makes a difference. Answer: srand - Actually, Olthoi soldiers have 4 different inherent armor levels spread over 5 different body parts. Three of those you can hit when swinging low. So I expect that this is the effect you were seeing.

Question: Masahara - Questions from someone who's been awol for months Answer: srand - There is no such bug. What dug is refering to is an inherent part of the tinkering system design. Basically, the total you salvage from one Usting is calculated as a real number (the total in the Ust * the percentage you can salvage based on your skill). This is then turned into a whole number by always rounding up (ceiling'd, if you prefer) so that you can never salvage 0 no matter how low your skill. But this means that salvaging 10 items one at a time will usually return more total salvage than salvaging those 10 items all at once (unless your skill is high enough to get a total return). So if you are extremely concerned about eking out every last drop of salvage, you will probably want to salvage each item separately.

Question: Sigma Omega - Why aren't there more dyes for this? Would it be that hard to put codes in for a black dye? Answer: Sean - Art-wise no, it would not be difficult to add more dyes for the Shadow armor. However, it requires a Content Designer to take it on as a project and see it through. This would be part of that Designer's monthly content. During this interesting time in AC where many new features are being added by some very good programmers, we are much more inclined to add content that uses those new features than to go back over old content and add to that. Unlike adding more general dyes, which would be a collossal effort touching EVERY piece of clothing art in the game, adding dyes that affect only the GSA would be quite easy. If a Content Designer sees it as something he or she would like to do for that month, it may get done.

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