Project Jerkstop: The Final Solution

Discussion in 'General Modification' started by Gaear, Mar 14, 2012.

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  1. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    Re: co8 modpack 7.8.0 portraits

    Seriously? :scratchhe

    Surely you must mean "Jerkstop confirmed! CONFIRMED!!!"
     
  2. sirchet

    sirchet Force for Goodness Moderator Supporter

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    I have completed three runs, (LG, NG and TN) with 7.8 and have absolutely no jerk-stop to report.

    I have experienced prolonged screen hang ups, (10-20 seconds) while panning during the WoTGS though.
     
  3. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    Moved all the jerkstop discussion from the ToEE forum over here.

    @sirchet, the lag is probably just particle effects issues from all the explosions et al. Re: your lack of jerkstop, had it been normal for you to get it previously? In other words, is it very unusual that you haven't had it now in three playthroughs?
     
  4. sirchet

    sirchet Force for Goodness Moderator Supporter

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    I didn't get it in the last version, but quite a few times in the version before that.

    7.8 = No
    7.7 = Yes rarely
    7.6 = Yes occasionally
    7.5 = Don't remember cause I'm an old guy. :p
     
  5. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    After thinking about this for a while, I am prepared to conclude that the area description boxes (! of all things !) are behind jerkstop if I can get three independent verifications that it's gone from 7.8 from people who normally or at least occasionally suffer it. So far it looks that way for GA82 (which is probably the strongest indicator being as he is the classic victim) and sirchet (a sometimes victim), and gazra is testing it now or soon.

    My guess is that the tutorial popups (which is what are hijacked for use as area description popups) involve some sort of internal call to the .dll that is binding things up. I've had a bit of verification of this idea based on the discovery that tutorial popups will pop up on tutorial maps even if there are no tutorial critters on those maps and their associated scripts that invoke the popups. (This was happening most recently under Welkwood Bog, which maps used the original tutorial map numbers.) While this doesn't point directly to jerkstop, it does point to 'something going on' behind the scenes that we're not aware of. The solution, then, is to not re-use the tutorial maps and to not invoke the tutorial popups at all.

    I am perfectly fine with that as a measure to eradicate jerkstop, because it will mean we don't have to screw around with moving the Hommlet map and thus reworking the worldmap and losing Hommlet's worldmap satellite locations. As for area descriptions, we can kill two birds with one stone on that score: we've always intended to make first arrival area movies, so now we can just make the area descriptions the movies. (They'll be actual movies and have nothing to do with popup boxes.) They'll be similar to the slavers movie, with static text and a picture to go along with it. This approach is not spectacular but we are not really capable of spectacularity with movies anyway, and I would rather do something reserved but well instead of ambitious but off the mark. At the worst they will be no worse than the popups as far as the appearance of quality goes, and probably a bit of an upgrade. So this way we will have area descriptions in the form of movies with a bit more flare and style, the movies we always planned, and no tutorial popup boxes to screw things up. Plus the slaver-style movies are not difficult to make, so it's a win-win all around.

    Area movies will include all the major worldmap locations (and the shopmap) that either already feature movies or had featured popups:

    1. Shop map
    2. Hommlet
    3. Emridy Meadows
    4. Moathouse
    5. Nulb
    6. Temple
    7. Welkwood Bog
    8. Hickory Branch
    9. Verbobonc

    The other worldmap locations (Decklo Grove, Moathouse Cave Exit, Ogre Cave, Imeryds Run, Temple satellites, Verbobonc Cave Exit, and Hommlet Quarry) are either minor or ancillary locations and don't really need intro movies.

    Areas that already have movies (Hommlet, Temple) will either have the area descriptions movies appended or just played in sequence.

    The images in the movies will be pics distributed with the game (bonus GoG materials), so they will be 'official' and of high quality. The descriptions themselves will remain unchanged, being text from the module.

    These movies, unlike the old batch, will be part of the full/real modpack and will be distributed with the game. I don't think data/bandwidth issues are really significant anymore in 2013.

    Lastly, the tutorial itself will probably return to the modpack, being as those maps and the popup system won't be hijacked anymore.

    Second from lastly, we will probably go back to the former worldmap configuration that reassigned some of the lesser locations to NC locations. That way they can have clickable locations again, and we will work around that weird thing that arrived with the change where Imeryds Run would appear prematurely as a known location. (I never figured out what was causing that, but it wasn't an issue with the previous iteration, so ...)

    All in all, if this all proves true and comes to fruition, it will be a major accomplishment and victory for Co8, on par even with the lag issues. It was very depressing to think of our finished product shipping with good old venerable jerkstop in v8.

    :thumbsup:
     
  6. GuardianAngel82

    GuardianAngel82 Senior Member

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    Did the area description boxes show up in 5.5? Why does it take several hours of game play before it shows up then, gets progressively worse? Why is the effect stronger in some areas than others? The boxes show up only once and Jerkstop shows up only much later.

    I'm not expecting answers here, just food for thought.
     
  7. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    The boxes did indeed show up just prior to the first reports of jerkstop in late 2008, along with quite a few other mods. Most all of the others were scrutinized before the boxes, sadly.

    As to the rest, your guess is as good as mine. I could theorize as to fatal loops being invoked by the .dll when certain x, y, z conditions are brought about, which is apparently how some of the boxes function in the tute - kill a rat, box! Look for box mob in Hommlet with x script, not found, fail, try again, rinse and repeat, jerk and stop ... but I would rather just chalk it up to the vagaries of ToEE. ;)
     
  8. Daryk

    Daryk Veteran Member

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    Hmmm... I haven't seen any jerkstop in 7.8, but I did get some tutorial text boxes popping up after I killed the minotaur in HB.
     
  9. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    Yes, the HB crypt had been on a tutorial map as well. That's insignificant, but the lack of JS is not. :)
     
  10. sirchet

    sirchet Force for Goodness Moderator Supporter

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    Alas, poor Jerky ... I knew him well. :p

    Good job Gaear, as usual.
     
  11. Agetian

    Agetian Attorney General Administrator

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    Sorry to possibly hijack the thread a little, guys, but have we finally beaten this ugly thing called jerkstop phenomenon? :) I recall this bug being a nuisance back in the days when I was writing the previous front-end, which means a long time ago, so it's great if it's finally gone after many years (I keep my fingers crossed). So, is it fully clear what was the actual cause of the thing?

    - Agetian
     
  12. phlippy g

    phlippy g Member

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    Gaear, this sounds good. I hope it works. When you mentioned returning the nc to the "clickable" world map. I seem to remember that in previous versions of the mod. Quests in which you are sent to a spot on the world map that was switched. Were rendered unplayable.
     
  13. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    Well I wouldn't say they were unplayable, just that you had to click the name on the right to go there. ;)

    @Ag, it's looking now like it was the use of the tutorial popup boxes for area descriptions. All I can really tell you is that without them, there is some compelling evidence that jerkstop is no more. :)

    I will have to eat a lot of sh*t if this turns out to be so, because it was me who gave us all the area descriptions, and it was me who failed to ever consider them as possible JS culprits, and it was thus me who forced many players like GA82 to suffer with the problem for several years. :shy:

    Bad me! ;)
     
  14. Agetian

    Agetian Attorney General Administrator

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    @ Gaear: Oh, interesting! Hmm, probably the least possible suspect, by the way... I would never have thought about them. :D And I kinda liked the area descriptions, too bad they turned out to be so problematic for the game engine.

    - Agetian
     
  15. Salk

    Salk Established Member

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    And it is possibly you giving us the solution to this mystery!

    You've done wonderful things for us, Gaear and we'll always be grateful to you. :thumbsup:
     
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