Welcome to the Sam and Dan Games Developer Blog! Where we work non stop to keep you entertained!
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Last Week's Update/Server Issues
We had a crazy week last week, both in a good and bad way. Let's start with the bad. So instead of telling you the story how it unfolded I will just tell you what the problem was and how it caused all the issues that we had. Okay. So Databases need indexes. Imagine you have a giant book and it has no index. How would you find that page you are looking for without having to go through the whole book? You can't! So I had a tiny database (the one that keeps track of what events you had done in the story) that was missing an index. Initially the database was so small that it didn't matter. But as the game grew in size and in users this database grew. It has over 2 million entries and so every day as the database grew so did the slowdown. It got so slow that our host suspended our account. I told them to put it back up so I could disable all logins while I fixed the problem. I was really conflicted about all this. I'm no expert on databases or server administration so I had very little idea on where to start. Luckily I had bought this book called High Performance MySQL: Optimization, Backups, and Replication. While I didn't have the time to read the whole book or follow everything it had to say, it did give me some ideas on trying to find the problem and how to fix it. After doing some test to see how long each thing took to load I found that loading events was taking way too long even when I was the only user playing the game, which brought the discovery of the missing index on that database. Other than that I made some upgrades to the database engines (I changed from mysam to innodb, for those with database knowledge) that should let more people in at a time. There might be some side effects to these changes that I will have to fix but I'm pretty happy that we are somewhat back to working order.
The good stuff is the new content that I was able to bring to the game. I finally put in running shoes into the game which let you move at twice the speed. (Your pokemon will also move fast, I did have a version where your pokemon wasn't as fast and he would be left behind) You can get the shoes by talking to an old man in Cherrygrove City after you defeat Zapdos there. Another big and daunting task that I had was to add fishing. I actually go the chance to stream while I was making the fishing part and frankly I had no idea how I was going to add fishing. Luckily I'm pretty quick at thinking about how to solve problems and so I thought of a way to add it in and it worked out pretty well. You can now get an old rod or good rod by defeating the fisher man on the second part of Route 32 (Read the FAQ page for more detailed info). Once you have a rod you can go to any water source available in the game and fish on it (press spacebar or z) this will trigger a battle. Things like which rod you are using, which location you are in, time of day will affect who you get to battle with. I basically set it up to mimic the actual game. I'm really happy with how it turned out so I hope you guys can enjoy it.
On top of all of this I added all the generation 1 pokemon that you can capture in PTD2 to the PTD1 to PTD2 transfers. This includes: Jigglypuff, Wigglypuff, Zubat, Golbat, Bellsprout, Weepinbell, Victreebell, Geodude, Graveler, Golem, Gastly, Haunter, Gengar, Poliwag, Poliwrath, Krabby, Kingler, Staryu and Starmie. As I do every week there was also a Mystery Gift and a Giveaway pokemon. The Mystery Gift was electric ghost type Rotom and the giveaway was Plusle and Minun. If you got the code in time you would get 2 of each Plusle and Minun. One male and one female.
Last but not least Cosmoids had a nice update. I added more losing conditions, if you let enough bug creatures pass you will lose the level. You can tell how many lives you have left by the heart graphic on the top left. Evan, one of our freelance artist, also did a revision on the grass graphic for the first level. While I thought the original ones looked fine, Dan thought they needed more work. And so Evan did the job and they look great! The other thing I added was a fainting animation to the units. Instead of disappearing you will now see them flip on their backs and then flash before they disappear. These types of details go a long way in making a game. Each of them bringing us closer to a full game.
What's happening this week:
Pokemon Center Bugs
I need detailed information about the Pokemon Center Bugs with Breeding, Trading and Picking up pokemon. The more step by step information you can give me the better.
Like every week we will have a mystery gift and a giveaway for the runner up of the poll. You have one day to vote for which of the remaining types should be the new mystery gift. Then I will post specific pokemon that can be the mystery gift and giveaway.
PTD1 to PTD2 Transfers
My goal this week is to add a lot of Generation 1 Pokemon into PTD2. So this week I plan to add: Vulpix, Ninetails, Oddish, Gloom, Vileplume, Paras, Parasect, Venonat, Venomoth, Diglett, Dugtrio, Meowth, Persian, Psyduck, Golduck, Mankey, Primeape, Growlithe, Arcanine, Abra, Kadabra, Alakazam, Machop, Machoke, and Machamp. Adding these will make it so that you can get more than half of the Generation 1 Pokemon into PTD2!
Since we are adding the Oddish family and Bellossom is part of Generation 2 then I'm also adding the Sun Stone so that Gloom can evolve into Bellossom!
Cosmoids Level Select Screen and Level 2
For Cosmoids this week I want to start work on Level 2. I really want each level to feel different than the others so each level will take some time to create. On level 2 is when you finally get your first creature, but please note that you won't be able to save just yet. Since we will have multiple levels we also need a level select screen. Very similar to PTD1 there will be different chapters. I'm looking forward to making this!
My Status: Not Working. Not Streaming. http://www.justin.tv/samsndgames
- Level Selection Screen (100%)
- Added new Title Screen Graphic (100%)
- Added new Character Graphic (100%)
- Level 2 (100%)
- Added the level 1 intro cutscene (100%)
- Mystery Gift (100%)
- Make Bellossom's graphic bigger (100%)
- PTD1 to PTD2 Transfer (100%)
- Add New Pokemon to Trading Center (100%)
- Add New Pokemon to Breeding Center (100%)
- New Item (100%) - Sun Stone
- Implement in game (100%)
- Implement in Pokemon Center (100%)
- Test New Pokemon, attacks, and abilities (100%)
- New Pokemon (100%) - Vulpix, Ninetails, Oddish, Gloom, Vileplume, Bellossom, Paras, Parasect, Venonat, Venomoth, Diglett, Dugtrio, Meowth, Persian, Psyduck, Golduck, Mankey, Primeape, Growlithe, Arcanine, Abra, Kadabra, Alakazam, Machop, Machoke, and Machamp
- Graphics (100%)
- New Attacks (100%)
- Sunny Day (100%)
- Moonlight (100%)
- Aromatherapy (100%)
- Spore (100%)
- Signal Beam (100%)
- Earth Power (100%)
- Tri Attack (100%)
- Fake Out (100%)
- Pay Day (100%)
- Switcheroo (100%)
- Power Gem (100%)
- Soak (100%)
- Covet (100%)
- Karate Chop (100%)
- Seismic Toss (100%)
- Kinesis (100%)
- Miracle Eye (100%)
- Ally Switch (100%)
- Telekinesis (100%)
- Vital Throw (100%)
- Low Sweep (100%)
- New Abilities (100%)
- Drought (100%)
- Stench (100%)
- Effect Spore (100%)
- Wonder Skin (100%)
- Anger Point (100%)
- Defiant (100%)
- Marvel Scale (100%)
- Water Veil (100%)
- Stats (100%)
- Evolutions (100%)
- Bug Fixes (100%)
- Fixed a bug with stat change buffs and debuffs (100%)