Announcement time! 1.2.0 is out!

Nov 19, 2018 by Markus Törnqvist

Announcement time! 1.2.0 is out! We rewrote pretty much all the input handling for this one. Double-click default actions work much better and the player doesn't get stuck if you try to drag and drop. That does not exist, but at least you're not stuck ;)

Announcing 1.1.0!

Oct 18, 2018 by Markus Törnqvist

Hello again from everyone at Fad Games and Iron Sky Universe!

We have a new version out with lots of cool stuff. Essentially we backported code from the on-going Iron Sky: Cold War project to make A Lunar Adventure feel more modern.

Fallback actions, like talking to the airlock door, are clearer now. The radio crackle was not obvious to everyone, so the text is now visible for a while longer. The player also doesn’t move for every action, which makes for a much better experience.

Room changes are much faster now as well, thanks to pre-loading. In older versions it could take a while to move from a room to another, but now it should be good even on older hardware.

Then we had that one bad bug, the one that could lock up the game, but eluded every attempt to find it. Therefore we changed the room at the end, making it (hopefully!) impossible to hit that bug. Whatever it was. At least the gameplay feels more natural in the last room after the change.

For all of you who want to play the game again, there’s some extra camera work as well to make one of the scenes feel more alive.

Quick update: 1.0.4

Sep 28, 2018 by Markus Törnqvist

Hello everyone!

We did some spit-polishing on the game, though it’s not our primary focus at the moment. We put some more work into tooltips. You wouldn’t believe how tough it is to get every corner-case covered!

Another big thing is work on UI elements. We did some code for the menus, especially adding an in-game menu. Looks real sweet now. If you played the game already, you may have noticed the confirm popups weren’t always responsive. This is now fixed; it needed framework-level changes as well.

Sadly we heard the mandelbug was still present in 1.0.3. It truly is the most elusive bug we have seen. Some code was shifted around and we haven’t hit it in our testing, but that doesn’t prove it’s not there. Real elusive.

Please, let us know if you still hit it! And remember, you can force-quit the game and Continue to get on, so it’s not the end of the world. Only embarrassing.

We’re still working on the framework and backporting code to A Lunar Adventure. Most of it will not be visible in the game, but - as always - we’ll release a version when we feel it’s warranted.

Go ahead and download!

Hello everyone!

One of the worst bugs we’ve had in this game is at the end. It’s when performing the last action that triggers the final cut scene and animation, but the game gets stuck in a weird state.

It’s a mandelbug (like Mandelbrot fractal) in the sense that it’s very non-deterministic and its causes eluded everyone for a long time. The original fix was to move all the interaction positions so the player wouldn’t hit the exit by accident. This has apparently not been enough.

The current theory is as follows: When performing the action, the player moves to the proper interaction position. The engine checks if the player collided with the exit area to exit. Sometimes your computer causes a rounding error in this check. This confuses the execution of game scripting. It partially tries to exit and partially tries to trigger the cut scene, and the end result is getting stuck in a bit of both states. Because cut scenes don’t take input from you the player, the entire game seems locked up.

Now the exit is disabled altogether when performing that action. A solution that’s very simple yet obvious in retrospect.

A bug this elusive may still persist, though, so please do report any findings!

This new release (Download link here) has other fixes too.

The action menu and tooltips weren’t properly clamped to the screen. Sometimes the menu would open just a bit off, even if it didn’t require clamping. The tooltip also disappeared at times, like around the exterior of the UFO.

All of those should behave better now; please let us know if you see something that hurts your eyes.

You can also double-click on items for default interaction. This feature wasn’t too hard to implement, but all the more to design. The most useful default is to look at things, because that’s often the key to solving the puzzles. For a door, however, it would be to open it. But if a door isn’t automatically possible to open, what to do then?

We hope we got this good enough. We may change something if, or when, the Escoria framework gets features we want in A Lunar Adventure, but fiddling with the current defaults isn’t going to warrant a new release.

Performance when walking around the outside of the UFO should be just a bit better as well. We had some blowback in performance during development, but luckily A Lunar Adventure served as an excellent game to benchmark with.

When testing for the known

Aug 21, 2018 by Markus Törnqvist

Hi again!

It seems we are not immune to a very specific bad habit in software engineering: testing for the known. We received some bug reports quite fast - and we thank you for them - which we should have caught.

Entering the UFO appeared buggy, because we had accidentally left the whole object interactable, even if the action menu should open only at the door.

You are also advised that the game may not load pre-1.0.0 autosaves correctly if you hit continue in the menu. This is because the open-source Escoria framework we use isn’t particularly stable. I noticed that characters could be set to a negative angle. As such this isn’t a big deal; you can rotate however many degrees you want and always end up somewhere. From a development point of view, dealing with negative degrees just doesn’t make sense. Some internal changes were also made, which will break old saves.

The third bug was after finishing the game. You could hit Continue or New Game and have everything go dark, except the player character. Escoria’s game_over() code looked too heavy to deal with during the original jam development. It took a while to figure out, but it’s figured out now. You can’t continue after finishing the game and a new game shouldn’t be buggy anymore.

We must be more mindful of these types of issues in the future. It’s easy to miss them, because running a pre-revenue games studio means juggling napalm-covered bowling balls and pins all the time. Then there’s the delays between our development of the framework and having our changes integrated. If they’re going in at all.

I’ve heard it said that shame is a sign of a healthy man, but so is releasing 1.0.1!

To end on a positive note, these are things that will make it into Iron Sky: Cold War, so we don’t have to fight the same bugs again.