Five on Friday - May 25, 2007

"A while ago, MrTact said Enhanced Bandages were broken - did he ever fix them?"
This came up at the Town Hall last week, and Leurocian checked the code today. They aren't actually broken at the moment - they appear to correctly give a 10-point bonus. What IS broken, though, is another part of the healing code (which may have been what MrTact was actually referring to.) Some of the "slip" calculations are off, potentially lowering overall heal rates and totally removing the intended bonus for GM Healing and above. Leurocian put a fix in for that, and once QA gets done beating on it you'll see it in an upcoming publish.


"Why does it seem like Cure potions don't work as well if you have a high total Enhance Potions stat?"
Leurocian dug this one up as well, and the answer is fairly simple - it's broken. Right now the code is such that the higher your total enhance pots value, the harder it is for a Cure potion to succeed. This is not a good thing. Leurocian has a fix in for it, and, as above, we'll get it into an upcoming publish as soon as QA oks it.


"Why are roads ugly in 2D now?"
The short answer is - it's an inadvertent byproduct of making roads in Kingdom Reborn look pretty, and it's something we plan to fix. The long answer is, well, long. Our lead designer Nick Corea (Dragonhead) answered this in more detail:

In KR, the terrain is rendered completely differently than in 2D. In 2D, each terrain type is represented as a set of tiles. Each set has variants that break up the repetitive nature of the tile set. (You can see this in many of the housing tilesets.) Each set also includes transitional edges that help make the changes from one set to another (dirt to grass, for example) look more natural. With so many different 2D terrain types, all of this leads to thousands of terrain tiles.

For Kingdom Reborn, we wanted the terrain to look more natural and blend smoothly from one type to another. We use several layers of textures to produce large areas of the same terrain, without obvious, distracting repeats. Since we did this with larger, blending textures rather than individual tiles, KR has no need for the terrain variants or transitional edge tiles. But we need to have KR and 2D work with the same data, so we needed to convert thousands of different 2D tiles to less than 200 terrain types for KR. Under this plan, the original data would be (and for the most part is) preserved.

Once the converted roads were seen in KR, it became apparent that they were hard to follow, with their edges blending too well with the surroundings. And since roads are just dirt tiles, we couldn't automatically make "roads" more distinguishable. All that "dirt" was only considered "road" based on context. Therefore we came up with a new terrain type, "road stone," that would look like worn, partially overgrown cobblestone. The KR world building team tracked down all of the roads in all the maps and replaced the centers of the "dirt" roads with "road stone". (It looked pretty darn good.)

In order to keep 2D looking more or less the same, we copied the 4 standard dirt tiles to a new location in the terrain texture list, and set them up to translate to "road stone" in KR. The only problem was that since we converted KR back to 2D, all "road stone" KR textures mapped to only ONE of the 2D "road stone" dirt tiles. All 4 variants are available, but are not yet used. This makes the road areas look repetitive and, well, ugly.

But fret not!

We are currently adding the variants to the roads as fast we can, starting with areas most populated, but it looks like we should be able to break-up/improve the look of all the roads in the game. There are other terrain tile sets in 2D (water, for example) that have a similar problem, for similar reasons. If our current roads plan works well, we will likely attack some of those issues as well.


"Is the new Poisoning skill gain working correctly? I put 50 points on my archer but have not gained anything using the Serpent Arrow move."
This is working correctly, for very small values of "correctly." Basically, the Serpent Arrow code is deeply weird, and although the skill gain code itself is fine, the chance of you actually getting to the "gain skill" part of it is distressingly small.

Serpent Arrow works as follows: based on your Poisoning skill, Archery skill, and Dexterity, you have a chance to apply poison within a certain range of strength. In order to gain Poisoning skill, you have to a) succeed with the ability (i.e., actually poison the opponent) b) roll a level of poison that's in the correct range for your poisoning skill and c) succeed with the skill gain chance roll.

This is not the way we ultimately would like it to work, but changing the way Serpent Arrow works is a different process than just adding on a skill gain chance. It's something Leurocian would like to look into changing, but in the meantime, you do have a chance to gain skill using it - even if it's only a very small one.


"When with the Candle of Love shrine spawn go away?"
When the Candle of Love is lit! All the servers are getting very close to completing this task, and several have succeeded. Many people need to add their small flames to the great Candle for it to light up. The following non-Japanese servers have successfully lit the flame on at least one facet:

Napa Valley
Lake Superior
Siege Perilous

Many more shards are very close. Once the Candle is lit on a particular facet, monsters at the shrines on that facet will no longer respawn. However, if you have not yet completed your quests, you can still complete them on the other facet. When all shards have lit the Candle of Love on at least one facet, the event will be turned off via a publish.


CORRECTION: HLA and HLD's duration
Last week I mistakenly posted HLA's and HLD's durations at 2.5 and 2 seconds, respectively - the correct values are 10 and 8 seconds. Sorry for the confusion! (This has been corrected on last week's FoF page as well.)


Crazy stuff, this week. Apologies to everyone having issues with the KR beta download, and we really do appreciate your patience. Have a good weekend!

- Jeremy

See Also