Development in 2009 (RSS Feed)
Hello from H1N1 land. I haven't managed to get a note up since I've been away from my computer and I'm going to be away for a few more days while I recover, but I had to come back to pay rent today so I thought I'd get something up in addition to the note Zach left over in the list thread. I wasn't actually planning to take any more time off after Christmas day itself, but I've been staying over with my family so they can monitor my health, and I'm in no condition to work anyway. I also can't check my email/messages there since I'm not allowed to contaminate their keyboards. At least I can keep fluids down now. Scamps is having a blast with his extended vacation, surrounded by new toys and pieces of my mom's plants that he has chewed off. Anyway, my eyes are starting to hurt again and I've got people waiting. Hopefully I made sense and stuff.
Scamps enjoyed his mechanical hamster. On the downside is his new run: galloping into my room, shooting under the bed, hitting the wall, leaping on top of the bed, jumping over my head, then back out the door.
Lutefisk today for Christmas Eve. I did not survive gracefully.
Little subterranean animal people camps. There are time-consuming complications with adding sites underground for them, so these are temporary camps that will go away during repeat visits in adventure mode, and they aren't meant to be the staging grounds of invasions. Just little camps, with armed animal people underground, presumably hunting but not visibly doing so. The general idea was to add some easier challenges for adventurers wandering around and in dwarf mode to give occasional peeks at larger animal people populations you'll be dealing with.
Rainseeker says: "Here is a teaser before the next release of DF Talk, where we discuss creature tags and some of the inner workings of how animals work in Dwarf Fortress. This is in conjunction with the Ark Project, which can be found here.
Also, new Dorf Shorts! Merry Christmas, er Dwarfmas:
Dorf Shorts - Night Before Dwarfmas"
I'm moving over to layer entity populations now (the various underground animal people), fixing up their equipment and other issues. There are some new entity tags there to allow wooden weapons for them (without adding things like wooden armor or whatever the elves do) and indoor/outdoor farming have been separated from the use of trees. I still need to run a few more invasions and add little groups for the adventurer to find. These will all come from the same overall populations, which can be depleted and slowly come back if there are enough around. General wilderness populations are a little more complicated, so that's not in yet for them.
Chasing crash bugs... somehow my color raw file became zero bytes, and I didn't notice for a while. There was another world gen crash from creature variations as well. Those are sorted now.
I spent seven hours in front of a jigsaw puzzle over at my grandmother's house, but I managed to do some more work down below, adding some undead stuffs and other things/fixes. I tested catastrophic HFS activity with many unfortunate miners, though the first time the population changes caused the demons to run away like benign animals.
Adventure mode access to the lowest regions ended up taking a while to sort out. There were all sorts of rampways going to intriguing magma-filled locations that didn't really help with getting people into places. Got to see a playful spirit of fire take flying steam dives in and out of a water-filled area while a submerged frog demon looked on.
Mostly working down below in mystery land today, but it was nice to see it teeming with fun times. I worked out various busted population issues as well.
I fixed up some issues with how features/populations were being allocated, but a lot of today was trying to get my sleep back around to something normal... for me anyway, since things have really been getting out of wack lately. I also organized the remaining underground notes and threw various things out for this release, so I'm down now to needed work in various categories. More or less it boils down to testing out the new life and populations more, testing out and fixing up the underground animal people civilizations, fixing map quibbles, deciding what to do with the rope stuff, and dealing with a few hanging issues with the stuff I put in the spoiler before. If the underground was supposed to take a week total this month, I really doubt I can finish that in three days, but at least it'll be green after this stretch of work.
40 or so new underground critters... and very few of them were "mans". In the raws, you can specify how deep you want them to be, among the first three layers (if your world doesn't have that many, they'll get crammed together) or down at the bottom ones. Now on to various other hanging issues with the underground.
Giant critters and the animal peoples are popular, at least in my own mind, and their numbers are still growing even as the underground update continues, so I set up some handy tools for adding them that people will be able to use. You can tell a creature to copy its raw tags from another creature entry, then tell it to add, remove or swap out lists of tags, and these can be set up in templates ("creature variations"). The swap can be restricted to a leading tag list (say, BODY:HUMANOID) to avoid some problems. You can apply multiple templates to a creature and they'll modify the raw tags in order.
So far I just have the "giant" and "animal person" templates that swap, add and remove tags to turn critters, including the little vermin ones, into their appropriate relatives. I put in a few special sizing tags so that sizes don't have to be entered manually. Pretty much all it needs for most of them are new name strings. Certain examples like slug/snake men that don't have legs (vs snail men who do) need to be specially treated.
Things like various birds are much easier to add, since you'd only need to specify their differences, like the name, size, biomes and colors. You could set up a base "bird" template and then just add the desired information on top of it. There could also be templates for things like the common tags shared by all "element men". All sorts of things could be done with this later, and it might allow more of the later sphere creature modifications to be in the raws. If you don't want to mess around with templates, you can still use the copy power to do some things quickly.
It's somewhat strange to work with the tags at times, and it'll probably have to be augmented to make it more powerful down the line (nesting templates would be very useful), but the current setup is reasonably useful and it should be a pretty good time-saver for people that find themselves making similar creatures and don't want to use castes within one creature definition (which imposes some limitations on the biome for instance). It doesn't replace the body detail plans from before -- they should probably be merged later and the whole thing raises the issue of proper scripting languages again, but I just wanted to get this out of the way.
All right... back to the underground! I'll try to be more vocal about what I'm doing to the extent that that's possible. It should be in the release's final form by the time I'm finished this time around.
The transcript is up for DF Talk 5.
I went through a few optimizations for the new reactions and jobs in general today, mostly to get it back to where it was before, but there will be a slight overall gain as well.
Also, people keeping close track of things might have noticed the entry yesterday was posted late. That's because I stayed up until 5:30PM, because I always thought I was almost done. I thought I was going to finish, but I had to clean some more things up when I woke up around 3:30AM today (the 13th)... Anyway, what I had to do there is almost done, and I should have a mostly regular day with the nearly-greened out section tomorrow, and I'm going to bed now at the regular time (7AM) if I can.
It turns out the scheduling for Baughn makes this an opportune time to do 40d# stuff, so I've been working through some preliminaries for the merge there instead of finishing off the section I've been working on the last few days.
I updated the regular mood corpse objects (bones, shells, skins, etc.) and did some other minor updates. This section of the list is almost done. Another couple days and I should be back to the underground.
Today was for going over several minor issues associated to the new corpse-type objects (including bones and shells), such as destruction during plant regrowth, trading, looking around in adventure mode, dumping objects, and stockpiling skins. Assuming it all worked out, there should be no differences from 40d here (aside from it not reporting skulls separately in adventure mode anymore, since it doesn't quite know what they are now as their own category), so there isn't much to report.
Threetoe has written a new story, The Evil Squire, in which a vile knave sinks low while reaching for the sky. It has been posted up in the story section and there's a forum thread as well.
I fixed up tanning and tanning automation today, and I added automated fish cleaning and fat rendering. Modders can also set any of their custom jobs to be automated for whatever building they put them in (among the limited options) and their custom buildings. I dropped a bunch of marmot bodies in a swamp with a butcher, tanner, kitchen and fishery, and it was nice to see the bustle as marmots and turtles were processed, without adding any jobs. I added a stopgap solution for automation vs. burrows -- if an automated building is located in a burrow or set of burrows, it'll restrict its search to those areas. Without going through workshop profiles or doing explicit assignments, this should be fine for now, but there might be some annoying cases.
Skull totems are back up, and I worked out problems with food/refuse stockpiles and wood/tree names. Next up is cleaning up tanning and tanning automation.
My embark group started with a barrel full of prepared raccoon hearts. Somebody oughta do something about that. Anyway, rotting, processed and post-meal vermin leavings were handled for dwarf mode and world gen materials. Turtle shells are left at the fishery now instead of the dinner table, though I guess there's a certain charm to eating things out of their natural bowls. Perhaps the overall presentation of the meal should matter a long time from now. The fell mood use of corpses was also handled. There's another list item that continues that for the regular moods, which still can't use bones properly.
Dwarf Fortress Talk #5 is up here: forum thread, DF Talk page with download.
I updated rotting today (I still need to do fish items), and I also made the new body part pieces work with the new craft jobs, so you now have ivory, horn, tooth, etc. crafts for the dwarves to make.
It's still in progress. I have this so far. A few of those are useless, but most can be eaten or otherwise used. It's all prepared according to the actual state of the corpse. The meat, ivory, teeth and bone objects are on the next page, and the prepared yummy eyes are on the previous page. I haven't handled the flag for skulls yet, so they are counted with the bones for the moment. It's quite a bit of food, so the numbers might be tweaked, but the small critters also need to give you some food and elephants are very large, so it might end up being hacked up a bit from reality for balance purposes. Of course, elephants are a little harder to kill now, so maybe a bit of a reward is in order. We'll have to see how it plays out. I suppose I could use "sweetbread" for the pancreas. I'm not really sure of other special names. There are stacking/barrel size and hauling issues as well, and I'll adjust numbers and items as needed there as well. If that means randomly cutting several of the specialty food objects for each instance of butchery, that'll be fine for now, and they can come back once I tackle hauling after this release.
It has been getting colder, so I've been keeping my arms under the blankets. This has led Scamps to invent a new game, where he'll claw my neck until I show him one of my fingers. Then he'll go about his business for the rest of the night (or day, I guess).
I was mostly mucking around with meat and plants today, working out the problems there before attempting to use objects like meat in butchery. There were various issues with them not showing up after world gen or not being known to the entities properly in other ways, which led back to some underground layer population bugs for dwarves and so on. I'm all set to begin the proper butchery stuff now.
The first issue was tackling the sever problem with skeletons. The issue here is that when a skeleton is created, it strips away all of their rottable tissues, but that leaves the head completely empty (things like the skull are sub-parts), and this means the skull is essentially floating separate from the spine (which is also floating). Handling it correctly is a bit of project, so I just stuck the slightest bit of totally rotten muscle on them for now to hang things together. The only downside here is that you'll occasionally see muscles in the combat text for skeletons. It all raises the question of exactly how the bones are moving and supporting their weight in the first place, which I suppose will start to be answered when I get to the curse entry on dev_next. For now, they are held together by wisps of very strong rotten muscle that inexplicably work. In terms of mods, for each part that is completely rottable, it selects the deepest non-subordinate tissue marked as a connector and keeps it. For a dwarf, legs and arms just use bone, while the head and body have to cheat. It should work for rotting away any undead creature to a "skeleton". I haven't tested them, but "skeletal" insects should end up being hollow exoskeletal husks with this method.
I also updated/tested blood being pushed around by rivers. They'll push any powders or liquid spatter around now, and it'll keep track of how much is around and so on. There were a lot of problems with surface rivers that apparently cropped up during the last underground revision. They were dry, and when I fixed that, they didn't flow, and when they flowed, they went the wrong way (I screwed that up on the second fix). Anyway, it's all good now.
Next up is butchery/corpse rot pieces/etc., which I haven't handled in any significant way yet, so I don't expect to green it out in one day.
I started off the month with some outstanding issues with material contaminants, especially issues involving state and temperature, and a quirk with dust (which was knocking people out like cave-ins no matter the source). The final test was to inject molten iron into the starting dwarves as a blood contaminant and make sure that doesn't go well for them. On the second try, everybody melted immediately and I lost, which is good. On the first try, the contaminant cooled off too quickly and they just had a lot of iron sort of abstractly sitting inside of them, at least for a while (all blood contaminants degrade over time, since they are really supposed to be venoms etc. -- iron was just faster to pull up). We've also got water freezing into frosty stuffs on people if they get wet and then step out into the cold, and steam coming off of spirits of fire in the rain.
All right, the squad features I wanted to go in this time are in, aside from formations, which are out for now. Here's the December 1 report. On to next month!
I handled equipment change job interruptions today, so people won't go off on lengthy yet stale missions to grab some object. I went over some other related problems as well, the most interesting probably being that dwarves will now keep working for a while longer even if they get hungry, thirsty or tired during the course of the job. That should be enough for any job that doesn't have a dwarf really stuck somewhere, walking through some complicated labyrinth or grabbing several resources. Until I get around to handling job priorities, there's a chance that they'll sometimes pick up another job once the first finishes, which will then cancel halfway through once they get really hungry, but during testing they've always run off to eat after the first job, so it should work well.
One more to go, and I can finally green this section out on the list. Issues today were dwarves pitching off their uniforms whenever they had to get a bite to eat (as when they are set to not use their backpacks for food) and checking out sleep order scheduling. Last up is cleaning up various hanging issues with equipment management.
Just a few sleep/eating tweaks and I can mark off the yearly schedules item. The work today was cleaning up issues with the scheduling screen, the display of the current scheduled orders and override orders for squad members, some order deletion cleanup, etc. The tests panned out correctly the first time for a change, so there's nothing amusing to report, he he he.
Today was Thanksgiving. Stories of Scamps were told to various family members.
More Dorf Shorts, lovingly crafted by Rainseeker! DF Talk page: Dorf Shorts - Sooocks!.
You can set your squads to defend any number of burrows as an order in their schedules. If there's nothing going on, they'll pick a square somewhere in their designated zone and hang out, eventually moving on to another zone location. There's less movement than with a patrol, but they still get around quite a bit. If a non-ambushing opponent enters any of their defended burrows, they'll head for the trouble. The schedules can be varied by the alert state, so you can change the defense patterns depending on what's going on. I imagine this will be made more interesting over time, but the current setup should be somewhat useful, anyway.
The patrol route creator was up, and the patrol order was there, but I'd never actually gotten a chance to try it out. What I got from the dwarves was, "Oh, I'm on patrol. I should go stand at the nearest waypoint!" So all the wagon dwarves stood at the point by the wagon, and the fisherdwarf stood at the point closest to the swamp. The final point was unattended. Anyway, I cleared that up and various other nonsense. Round, round they go on their little patrols. The "Add yearly schedules" list item is mostly testing out this kind of thing and other quibbles with how their orders and schedules work. There's Thanksgiving coming and various end-of-the-month work and obligations and I've let my email pile up, but I still think I've got a good chance of finishing up squads in November.
Hunters are up and running around again, and you can specify the sort of ammunition you want them to use. When they hunt, it saves a report of the adventure-mode style action in a special hunting category (along with the sparring and combat categories). There weren't any amusing errors this time around, unless you count a dwarf running off to kill the local elephants bare-handed every time I did something wrong. I also added a few more personality effects for training and did a preliminary adjustment to the training skill increases.
Dwarves that are assigned to squads can now go off and train in their free time, at least if they have any self-discipline at all (and any ambition or any sense of duty). They'll stick to individual drills and archery practice, leaving the multi-person non-squad activities for later (that'll have to wait for all of the party/celebration code etc. to be merged in, which is something I'm putting off for this release). In any case, even adding in single dwarf personal activities in the same framework was a good step toward getting the merge realized.
Back in squad training, one new recruit did 25 bolts worth of individual archery practice and then ran back to the barracks to give an archery lecture to everybody that was unfortunate enough not to have ammunition -- a dabbler teaching the completely unskilled. I guess he was just talking about how cool it was or something. A few dabblers rose out of that lesson. They must think crossbows are cool now too.
The topic vote for DF Talk #5 was tied last time I looked, and voting closes just after midnight on Thursday (US Eastern time).
I went through archery training today. By the end, given a wagon with several stacks of five bolts each which were assigned to the squad for training, the dwarf whose commander sent him off to ranged weapon practice dutifully marched over and put five stacks of five training bolts into his quiver, and then went off to one of the squad's designated archery targets to fire them off. There are more moving parts now, as the ammo gets assigned to the squad (so it can be stored in squad boxes) and then on to the individual trainees as they need it, so it took a while to get it working out properly, but it's another item off the list (even if it's 9:40AM...). There's still no official restacking at this point, so if you end up somehow with lots of single bolts from dropped stuck-ins etc., they'll each be there in the quiver. It's progressing, anyway, and overall the balance should be better as a dwarf will no longer consider a single bolt in the quiver sufficient for defense, training or hunting.
I started my wagon with mail leggings, iron flasks and a load of ale, then I told the dwarves that this month, they'd be on duty, standing over in the dirt some place, wearing leggings, before telling them that they can drink all they want. They put on their leggings, stuffed their flasks in them, went over to the barrels, filled up the flasks with ale and then milled around in the dirt. There are a few settings for this -- you can tell them to go for water or nothing at all if you want. You can also set the number of backpack rations like before. It still handles the flask/backpack assignments automatically, as before, but there's a bit more officialness to it. You can view all of a soldier's assigned equipment from the military screen (not just the desired uniform, but which items have actually been selected).
I looked at maybe the last item on the list that could be red instead of green (that is, delayed instead of included) and decided that whatever I could do today could go in for this time. So critters now become familiar with the items that they wear and hold, such as shields, armor and weapons. If a creature is familiar with the objects it is using, the related combat rolls will be adjusted upward depending on the degree of familiarity. The process of familiarization with an object speeds up greatly if the object is being used instead of simply held. A creature can also become attached to objects it is using over a long period of time and reject upgrades, provided the equipment still matches the squad position requirements. Attachment is fairly rare but is more common if there are preference matches.
It also keeps track of the item used to kill critters now (including both missile weapons and ammunition), and that'll pop up on the legends screen for every death that occurs once play begins (didn't have time to generate consistent weapon data for world gen). Each individual item also tracks how many creatures it has killed and where (including non-weapon objects like tantrum-thrown furniture from a stockpile), and this information will come across in the legends screen for artifacts.
To have such legends come up a little more often, dwarves that are attached to an object and have either used it in battle lots-and-lots or if it's a weapon and has killed a historical figure of era-level importance (civ leaders and mega beasts, pretty much) will name the object and raise it to a kind of semi-artifact status, where it will appear in the legends. You can get at the information in play just by looking at any item, named or not, but the naming will preserve the object throughout the histories by name forever. There are a few side effects I didn't get a chance to handle -- a named item cannot be truly destroyed for instance (it becomes lost, as with a created artifact, and can reappear if you visit the site where it was lost unless in the wilderness). On the handled side, the new objects don't attain the high level of craftsdwarfship/bonuses of created artifacts or their extreme value levels.
The DigiPen talk was fun. Of the twenty or so people, there were four left at the end when Zach took a picture. I'm not in the habit of asking names before questions, so from left to right, the best I've got is: Mr. Spontaneous, Brian the president who showed us around and got the room and so on, Jonathan S. Fox of LCS fame, Mr. Feeling, and me holding my arms in some bizarre way. We ended up driving for five hours total and the session itself was three hours. We played a health-conscious kobold wizard in Armok 1 for a bit and I showed them some early BASIC Dragslay screen shots (the 6th grade elementary school one, 1 2 3 4 5 6 7), and I went over world gen mechanics before doing a Q&A about most everything. I was pretty burned out by the end, but I finished an easy break item to keep things going.
At the last meetup, I told a couple of guys from DigiPen that we'd swing by their game design club. Somehow that ended up involving a projector, so I spent too much time digging around for my old BASIC stuff and so on. Anyway, it's actually at 7pm tomorrow, but today was the day that got de-worked since I get up at 3pm. Tomorrow should mostly end up being a normal work day once we get back from Redmond.
After I sorted out various wardrobe malfunctions, the little dwarves marched off to their training swords and went to the barracks to prepare for sparring injury rate testing. I didn't want to sit around for skill demonstrations or individual drills, so I set sparring as the only available activity, even though nobody knew how to do anything. They still stood around doing nothing, because it was still failing the personality check for the instructor, who wasn't reckless enough to send such green recruits off to spar. So I disabled that, and for experimental control purposes, I disabled the "play combat" flag associated to sparring. There were split bloody fingers and bruises, and sparring ended almost immediately due to the injuries.
Next I did the actual experiment, and they managed to fight non-stop for two game weeks with only a few minor bruises here and there. It records combat logs for sparring in a different color in the reports menu, so you can read what's going on if you like.
The final experiment was without "play combat" and without injury stoppages, to make sure the blunt wooden swords were truly dangerous. I guess maybe it took slightly longer than I expected, but by the end four of seven dwarves had been killed and two of the last partially toothed swordsdwarves battled it out while the third wheel sat by semi-conscious. Killing his sparring partner was the final straw though, a tantrum came on, and the poor guy threw teeth and training swords all over the training room. I guess they would have started the final sparring match once he calmed down.
Training weapons are in now. As it stands, dwarves make them at the carpenter. Currently I've got wooden variants of the edged weapons that don't even try to have wooden edges, so they are anti-arterial and anti-eyepokey. You could add in wooden variants of the blunt ones if you like, but I was struck down by the odd-seemingness of that again at the last moment. We can do more with it later. You can trade for them and whatever else, and I *think* I sorted it out so that you won't have a giant human army arrive at your fortress, all armed with training weapons. Here's to hope, anyway. That's not to say that you can't arm your squads with training weapons for their actual duties, if you are so inclined or constrained. I still need to do some work with the equipment distribution for them, which I should be handling with the sparring injury testing to get that all squared away.
Some new List thread posts as well today:
November 16, Early Morning (1)
November 16, Early Morning (2)
November 16, Early Morning (3)
The axe/pick civilian job annoyances have been handled, so those items shouldn't end up scattered all over the place, and the squad weapon settings are stored apart from the labor professions, so any long-standing lingering bugs there are gone, or at least have been replaced by the new ones we find. A civilian that changes out of one of those jobs will seek to store their axe/pick (instead of dropping it) before doing other work, and they keep their clothes on now.
The full version of the Just Press Start interview is up at their archive.
Maybe I'm bound not to green-out a list item when I begin testing and all the dwarves around the initial wagon pitch their clothes on the ground and begin to wander around naked. The alligators didn't help either. By the end, a soldier that was changed back to civilian status went over to one of his squad's racks and stowed his battle axe properly instead of dropping it on the spot as they do in the currently released version. There are a few more things to verify before I can check that part off though. It bodes well for squad cleanliness anyway. Civilian cleanliness has a way to go...
Forum-goer Halconnen earmarked part of a contribution for a toy for Scamps. Zach and I went out and grabbed one yesterday. The marvelous contraption can operate both person-assisted and on automatic.
The quartermaster-style dwarf that handles all of the squad equipment allocations in larger forts is up with a proper office job now, and I'm now working on getting the soldiers to move between their civilian, combat and training outfits and equipment with as little scattered mess of strewn clothing as possible. Hopefully this will also fix up lingering problems with axes and picks vs. soldiering for woodcutters and miners as well. Once that's done I should be able to check up on overall sparring injury rates to make sure we've settled down into something reasonable.
Worked out some of the kinks in the new military interface and added the ammunition section. You can set up ammunition allotments by material (and type, so you can do unusual things like set up a squad to use the bows and arrows left by invaders or your modded ammunition or whatever -- it'll stick the entity-favored ones on the top of the list), and you can set each allotment to be used for combat and/or training. So you could, for instance, set aside your squad's metal bolts for combat and have the marksdwarves use wooden bolts for training (or do a steel/copper split in the same way). It'll probably need some tweaking, so that dwarves without combat ammo will use training or even unassigned ammo when they are really pressed, etc., but this should finally give you some control, anyway.
Aqizzar requested images of the arena as well as wounds and the overall creature descriptions, so here's a run through. Everything is still subject to change of course.
Arena 1: Once you enable the option in the init, you get access to the new menu option. Haven't updated the version number or year yet!
Arena 2: Raws are stored with the worlds now, and this lets you pick which world you want to play with. Bit more to be done here (folder names aren't really helpful).
Arena 3: Here we've arrived at the arena. Some moss is thrown about to break up the monotony of the block floor. There's a lava pool on the left and a water pool on the right. If I have time, I can make it a little more interesting. In any case, you have access to a few relevant dwarf mode commands, and we can expand what goes on in here over time.
Arena 4: You can create creatures and liquids as you move around in look mode.
Arena 5: There's an alphabetical list of creatures with their castes listed (that's gender for all but the ant men). If side is set to "independent" they'll stand alone, otherwise you can put them into color-coded groups.
Arena 6: The dark gnome has been placed. If you press 'a', you can assume control of the creature adventure-mode style.
Arena 7: There's the gnome out from under the cursor. We're ready to place the next creature.
Arena 8: This time it'll be an adept hammerdwarf.
Arena 9: Here's the item selection screen.
Arena 10: Narrowing down with a string filter, we grab a weapon...
Arena 11: ... and add the hammer.
Arena 12: I've added more equipment here. The choices you make persist when you come back to the screen, so you can place several identical creatures before blanking the item and skill lists and putting in your next critter.
Arena 13: Now we have a dwarf and a dark gnome, bound for a long friendship.
Arena 14: The 'C' up on the left border means there's now a combat report active.
Arena 15: Here we're looking at the available reports.
Arena 16: Here is the first page of announcements concerning the fighting, here in arena mode the same as they would appear in a dwarf mode combat report. You can jump over to the main view with the screen re-centered on the location of the announcement.
Arena 17: The dark gnome has some injuries. The colors mean different things now, and they can be set in the init. Red limbs are broken or otherwise useless, yellow limbs are impaired and cyan organs have lost some of their function due to the injuries.
Arena 18: The fighting ends after the poor gnome has been beaten nearly to the lava pool.
Today I started by finishing up the activity framework, making sure that dwarves can move between their different training activities and so on without getting locked up in a weapon demonstration because the instructor dies and that kind of thing. Having this finished should also pull down the branch so that things like having a few dwarves sit around and listen to another dwarf playing an instrument at a party will be low-hanging fruit to pluck off later on (not for this release!), as well as improving diplomatic meetings, weddings and whatever other group events there are.
I also spotted and squashed a few bugs. For one, it was appointing children as young as one year to positions like "General", "Manager" and "Hammerer". It didn't stop them from being abducted by goblins, though.
If you've got a question you'd like asked on the next DF Talk, just shoot it over to firstname.lastname@example.org with "Question for DF Talk" as the entire subject. We're going to try that out as the threads were linked to episodes and ultimately became unwieldy.
Meetings with diplomats/complainers etc. have been updated to use position responsibilities instead of the old unit type/appointment system, so the entire "Entity Positions" section on the list has now been greened out. I've also been sorting through the remaining squad plans to get ready for the final push there, which starts tomorrow. I've already delayed formations. They aren't crucial for the release and I can just do them before I do improved sieges, since that's when I'll most start to want to have them around I expect. That leaves (at most) fifteen squad items, which I'm hoping to be able to finish this month.
Today was a more mundane guard update day. It'll now use whichever squads are assigned to the appropriate position to handle law enforcement and tax collector escort in dwarf mode. The actual scheduling menu option is slated for the squad stuff, which is coming up after I handle meetings, but once that's up you'll be able to use your fortress and royal guards however you like in an emergency (or whenever), but generally you'll want them free to do their duties (unless you don't care about law enforcement and upset nobles). In any case, they shouldn't be mostly useless now. Law enforcement in adventure mode also works (at least like it did before, with violence), but they don't know how to make specific squads in world gen yet, so right now it's just the guard commanders that do it. That'll need to be sorted out later, but I can push it out of this release without causing too many problems, hopefully.
Here are the larger posts I've made in the list thread recently in case you haven't been following along closely there. They often expand quite a bit on certain points within this dev log and development in general:
The Terror of Lambs was the name of a goblin civilization that arose in the Windy Land. They settled at a spot in the mountains which they called Urarstod, "Malignedlaw". Initially, they were equals, but within the year, the goblin Zom Hatredscourges intimidated the others with threats of violence and called herself "Law-Giver", assuming absolute authority over the others. The Palace of Nightmares was constructed, and Zom ruled from within, amusing herself with the jaguars she tamed from the dunes. Strangely, having big kitty cat friends was not enough, and war began with the elves within three years. Zom led a small band to attack their forest two times and was beaten back twice in personal combat with the elf Lapama Glimmerdrink, a hobbled cyclops hunter. The third attack, named The Brutal Assault by historians, was to be the last for Zom, killed and eaten by Lapama, who returned to cyclops hunting and died the next year.
The goblins were used to having a Law-Giver by this time, and Smunstu Staticsteal, a bear-lover who braved the tundra and elven forests for polar bears and black bears alike, rose to the position. The humans took advantage of Lapama's death and defeated the elves utterly during this time, and the goblins lived in peace for many years. A trade dispute with the dwarves brought war back to the Windy Land.
The goblins were winning, nearly taking the dwarven capital, when something horrifying emerged from the dunes. A shambling mound of vomit vaguely resembling a walking frog, it was Vim Forkedmarshes the Profane Nadir, mistress of torture and misery, emerged from the underworld. The demon challenged Smunstu's legitimacy as Law-Giver of the Terror of Lambs, and brought down her putrid fists on Smunstu's face three times, killing the unfortunate goblin. After a few years, Vim moved into the Immoral Tower in Terrorballs, a new settlement built near the ruins of the dwarven capital, which had fallen to the cyclops, Savot Seasonwill, the same beast who killed Lapama years before. Indeed, the cyclops problem was now the pressing issue for the goblins and their disgusting leader. Savot's pack of four attacked Terrorballs repeatedly, and Vim held twice, fighting off the beasts. In the end, Savot was victorious, and Terrorballs became another empty husk to match the dwarven ruins nearby. The goblins cowered in Malignedlaw while the humans eeked out an existence far away on the coast, besieged by ettins and a bronze colossus.
As with yesterday, even the semi-megabeasts need to have their numbers reduced slightly, ha ha ha. I guess that's a welcome change compared to their 40d pathetic selves.
Anyway, that's the variable positions experiment with goblins, so I'm greening that one out. There's a lot more that can be done there, but this is a start. A goblin can consolidate control in one position (not necessarily through violence), or delegate military strategy to others who will do the fighting. In the world above, the Law-Giver position also had all of the military responsibilities. Zom might have lived a bit longer if she had delegated those tasks to others (there aren't military coups yet), but with the Profane Nadir coming down the line, an early death was probably inevitable!
I made another small world just now, and fortunately it went the other way. A popular goblin assumed control of the group without taking on the role of actually leading forces into combat. After a few goblins held this position, a demon took control (through a duel which ended without a death -- the goblin got married and then was shot by an elf the next year). Wars were being fought by unorganized groups of goblins at this time, and after about a decade, the goblins decided collectively to select a general to be under the demon (it's more likely that the demon decides, but it went the collaborative route). The demon survived (the short) world gen, but there were five or six generals in fifty years. After the duel, the demon never fought with anybody again. Every civilization was intact with all of their settlements and the world was in peace during the last thirty years, though the beasts were quite active (none of them died and they had a few hundred combined victims).
Gulsheb escaped from the depths during the third year of recorded history and wandered the mountains for six years. Eventually she tired of this life and convinced the humans living in the hills below that she was in fact a manifestation of Tob, their goddess of deformity. She was a towering, bloated one-eyed thrush with a fat, bulging trunk in place of a beak, so it must not have been that difficult. The villages united under her rule, and she directed a sixty year expansion. Then the war with the elves began. She never took part in the conflict personally, preferring to direct it from the capital of Pastsmokes. After 24 years and several assaults on the town, the elves finally managed to raze the city. Gulsheb was beheaded by the elf Athifi Swampauthors. Fourteen years later, Athifi herself was shot and killed by a human in the same town. Over the next 500 years, Pastsmokes was destroyed 33 times in the unending war, but the leadership position created by Gulsheb to unite the villages continued to be occupied by various humans during the entire period. The most recent of these rulers was Mastrod Hairymagic, who took control in 599. She continued to worship Tob and the rest of the pantheon, unaware of the deception that had occurred centuries before.
The goblins don't have a pantheon to sneak in with, but they respect the power of a strong, murderous critter, so a demon that can defeat (not necessarily kill) whoever's in charge can assume control. One demon managed to assume leadership of the goblins before they had organized positions themselves but was killed and eaten by a hydra three years later. The goblin Stozu Tickwail, a survivor of the same attack, took it upon himself to assume the position of "Master" created by the demon. Unfortunately, another demon that had been roaming in a nearby forest saw the opportunity and challenged Master Stozu a year later, and the goblin was killed. This demon, Cuwiwe, ruled for nine years and was killed by a rampaging cyclops. The new goblin Master was killed by a cyclops the next year, as was his successor, and the one after that, ending the civilization. It was apparently a bad place to live.
The last demon, Ata Newtmonkeys, ruled a peaceful goblin kingdom for 300 years until she was burned up in the dragonfire of Ronux Fireytaxes, who survived 600 years of world generation with 137 kills.
If you want to get the same civ-leading behaviors out of your modded-in mega beasts, you can tack the POWER tag on them, which works in concert with INTELLIGENT_LEARNS. It'll need some spheres to match up if you want it to try its hand at playing a deity. The god impersonation and position formation will then pop up in the legends to read, along with the animal stuff from yesterday.
Getak Twigracks was a human warlord ruling the town of Spoongrizzle. After four peaceful years, he decided to make a journey to a nearby mountain range called the Belted Tooth, and in the manner of the legendary stories, he managed to tame the giant eagles that lived there. Eight years later, he traveled west, befriending the jaguars that lived in the hills there and bringing some back for his personal menagerie. Many more years drifted by, and the aging warrior thought perhaps he would be able to live out the end of his life in harmony with his many beasts. However, this was not to be -- because I forced a human assault on my fortress with a debug command. Several squads of foot soldiers came, as well as a group of trained jaguars running along with them. Getak was escorted by his personal guard, all riding giant eagles. The seven dwarves milling around by the wagon put up a modest defense.
The elves still have a great advantage in the use of beasts, but there can be a bit of variety now. As in fortress mode, the historical dwarves can now take advantage of certain underground beasts (not that you fight dwarves yet), and the goblins should have a greater variety available as well.
Dwarf Fortress Talk #4 has arrived: forum thread, DF Talk page with download.
Today I cut out all of the obsolete unit types and updated the code references where it made sense. This included things like the noble work exemptions, complaints about sleeping quarters and punishment exemptions, which made their way into the raw definitions. The old king/queen arrival was updated to move all of the "capital" rules-from-location position holders of your civilization over to your site, and the generated axe-dwarf royal escorts were updated to use whatever weapons make sense for the entity. The hammerer and tax collection code is going to be updated with the guard update, and the dungeon master position might not keep all of its quirks -- it's an appointment, and since your baron is an internal elevated position now, your dungeon master appointee can't suddenly have a personality wipe to make room for DM jokes. It's also weird that they'd suddenly let you tame exotic cave animals. Later on there should be some sort of knowledge/cult/guild surrounding that position, but I'll be happy enough passing that along for now.
I updated all sorts of location/gender/etc. issues today linking the new position raw files to the rest of the game. It all went smoothly, so we have more green stuff on the list. One of the things left over from the map stuff from last month is that internal volcanic features sometimes leave a gaping hole in the earth when they are not supposed to, and quite a bit of monstery stuff spilled out of there while I was checking that the liaison was named properly, but other than that there weren't any other traumas to report.
Ha ha, I haven't been to an adventure mode town for a very long time. There just hasn't been cause for it during all of these other changes. After I did the temple greeting update, I thought I'd be able to green out a few more items today. Instead, during testing, well, there were no temples, because there were no buildings, just a town with about 100 priests of different denominations standing in an otherwise empty clearing. It turns out they'd been razing their own temples each year and then starting new religions, leaving the old priests behind, and on top of that the game no longer knew how to place buildings because it thought there were too many overlaps with the new cave features.
Once all that was fixed, the priests disappeared entirely, but the game still registered the religions as having them. When I checked out an example, the guy had been a tiger hunter all his life, which ended when one of the hunts went horribly wrong. The following year, he was appointed a priest. No wonder my adventurer couldn't find him. After that was handled, I finally found a priest hanging out at a temple, and he greeted me properly.
The official topic announcement for DF Talk 4 is on the DF Talk page.
A few large, red-eyed pictures from the meetup.
Scamps in his hat (courtesy of the documentarian): One, Two, Three.
Rainseeker has put together another episode of Dorf Shorts which you can grab over on the DF Talk page: Dorf Shorts - Crime and Punishment.
The DF meetup is in Seattle at the Pike Place Brewery at 7PM today (Thursday 10/22) (today if you take into consideration I am writing this log at 2AM and stuff). Zach and I will be there. Please read the details in the first post of this thread if you are planning to come. Even if you haven't posted in the thread, feel free to drop by! If you can't make it, there will be a live broadcast which will also be recorded. Details/url in the thread or here: http://www.livestream.com/dwarffortressmeetup.
The transcript is up for DF Talk 3.
The apartment cleaning project is underway this week. This time it's more to give the documentary people involved with the Seattle meetup places to walk around, since all of the bottle kicking would no doubt mess up the audio.
I've added the ability to specify in the world gen params the number of sky z-levels, the number of z-levels minimum between each layer (it'll often be more because of elevation changes), and the number of extra z-levels down at the bottom. It doesn't yet allow dynamic resizing but this should be enough for the requests I've heard about.
I did an interview with Just Press Start (ep4) on Firebrand Radio. They should also be posting the entire raw interview as a bonus feature later on.
As a reminder, there will be a DF fan meetup in Seattle at the Pike Place Brewery at 7PM on Thursday. Zach and I will be there. Details are at this thread. Please drop by and tell us if you think you'll be coming!
Rainseeker has put together another episode of Dorf Shorts which you can grab over on the DF Talk page: Dorf Shorts - Thas Grreat!. Rough day sleep-wise, but this could be the beginning of a wonderful new relationship between me and the sun.
I'm back messing around with surface caves a bit. I can probably check off some of the list items for sites now. I'll do that tomorrow. Tonight I have to go to bed early since I have a... 9AM wakeup tomorrow. Against the 4PM wakeup I've been growing accustomed to again, it should be entertaining. I think the last time my alarm clock saw the AM side was a power outage.
Here's the third Dwarf Fortress Talk: forum thread, DF Talk page with download. Here's the topic vote for next time. We are currently in the process of sorting out how questions will work for next time since the forum question threads have let to a lot of redundancy as we replace them.
I noticed some people on the forum were worrying about the lack of updates. I'm still doing underground stuff. There are some things I don't want to spoil, so I haven't had anything to post.
There's going to be an unofficial meetup on October 22nd most likely at the Pike Place Brewery (same place as May) at 7PM, organized by a documentarian who is swinging through Seattle on an epic journey. Please drop by the thread if you think you might be able to make it. Optional documenting will occur, as well as webcasting courtesy of Sir Finkus, and Zach and I will be there.
We now have volcanic shafty pipey things shooting up through the layers again, and I didn't spot any dangerous flooding. There are various other layer connections as well. The next big project involves similar stuff down deeper, on a much more grand scale than the previous incarnations (those being game-ending timers and little glowing pits with a few this-and-thats).
Yesterday I put in the new parameters for world generation, so you can get rid of the underground features or constrain how open they are, peel off some layers, etc. The default settings are on the cavernous side, so that you'll be guaranteed to find many things down there. I also fixed up some of the new code that unhides the map as your dwarves walk farther out into the unexplored caverns. There are a few ramp walls that still aren't being uncovered properly, but it's working pretty well.
The project for today and the next few days is setting up vertical connections between all of the layers, including but not limited to surface caves and volcanic features. This will also include the interfaces between hidden fun stuff and the friendlier layers. Ideally, an adventurer will be able to walk from some of the surface cave entrances all the way down to the worst the underground has to offer, passing through the various layers.
I've been working on fixing up some problems with caverns and underground lakes, prior to finalizing their parameters for world generation input. Many of the little disconnected areas etc. from the old pictures have been cleaned up now, as well as all of the flooding problems I've encountered.
I think I'm ready to move on from the critters, although they are a little disjointed and there's not a broad enough range of special things for them to do for it to be really satisfying yet. It should still be pretty entertaining. They can have, like, six legs and breathe poisonous gas that makes your skin rot off and stuff, which is good for now. Here are a few raw entries for them if you want to be spoiled.
I've been busy plugging away at underground stuff. Specifically (and this was behind a spoiler before if you want to skip to the next paragraph), I'm finishing off the new unique generated beasts before I move on to the other parts. I thought the giant hairy ribbon worm with stretched skin wings was pretty scary, and the eyeless antennae lizard was sort of quirky, but the great blob of living vomit with a round shell could use some work.
Scamps was spoiled by my parents. The toy he is playing with there lasted about five minutes before he managed to detach it. We play fetch with it now. Huh, he detached the other one while I was writing this. I don't know where it is.
We have the official announcement of the next discussion topic in DF Talk #3 Teaser #2: Official Topic Announcement. Scamps makes several appearances, though unlike the last regular podcast, he's more of an equipment manager here.
I finished the main overview screen and the view of unit wounds/status/required treatments/medical history, etc. There is a lot of information, and I'm currently using the diagnosis skill of your chief medical dwarf to determine how much you get there. Anyway, I'm greening it out and moving on. I'm probably going to try to finish off the underground revision next, but I'm not certain.
If you haven't been following the list thread closely, I often post elaborations of the dev log there and answer other questions. Here are the larger posts I've made since I last put them up here:
Okay, custom workshops are done. Here is an example that is not going in the game. Workshops have to be rectangular, but they can have whatever dimensions (up to 31 or something, large enough not to matter much). In the example, the corridor is the only walkable portion, and the dwarf is set to work next to the little red circle. This custom reaction (job) produces a glob of the custom material without requiring any items, where the material itself is a separate raw entry. The workshop was set to require any "building material" for its construction, which is a flag you can put on building/reaction items now (much like many of the standard workshops' construction requirements). You can also do the fire/magma-safe flags, rule out economic stones, allow artifacts and set custom workshops to be magma-fueled. You can allow any number of labor settings to construct the building, or leave it blank to allow anybody to make it. In this case, the building and reaction both required the dwarf to have the soap making labor set.
I'm starting the last part of healthcare tomorrow, which is the appointed dwarf and the reports/readouts etc. of a dwarf's medical history. Then I can green out that section and move on to another one.
Rainseeker put together what ended being a final eulogy for the uselessness of soap makers for DF Talk #3 Teaser #1: Dorf Shorts - Soap Fortress.
Nearby dwarves should be a lot more proactive about hauling people off to hospitals now, and they'll also do what they can for bleeding wounds on the way.
Now that soap isn't as worthless, it seems people want its making moved out of the alchemist's workshop, which was just something for that building to do ever since I took antidotes out long ago. So instead, during the back half of today and some of tomorrow, I'm doing custom workshops and furnaces. I'm going to use it to make a place for soap making, which may or may not deserve its own workshop. Most or all of the old buildings will have to remain hard-coded for the time being. Still, since you can assign any number of reactions to the new buildings, and reactions can now be given required skills (from among existing types), this should be quite versatile for allowing modders to turn almost any item(s) into almost any other item(s) in more thematic workshops, using raw items and materials or the hard-coded ones. There are some things like crafts, decorations and specific statues that couldn't currently be handled, but it is okay for now. You should be able to set their dimensions as you like (within reason) and set up the (non-animated) displays for them, as well as the blocking tiles, but I'm not 100% sure on the freedom with the dimensions as I haven't checked all the snags yet. If they have to be odd or squares for ease of implementation, that will also be okay for now.
I finished up plaster casts yesterday, and today, well... it was a bad day for dwarves. Open wounds can now get placeholder simple infections and once that happens they can ooze pus, heal slowly and even kill, rotting wounds smell and can contribute to infection levels, and a more subtle invisible open-wound-infection-chance-enhancing grime builds up on the body that can only be removed fully by soap.
On the bright side, they'll clean patients off with water and soap, and people cleaning themselves off will use soap now for grime reduction and happy thoughts. The bars of soap are used up reasonably slowly, so you don't have to make one for every cleaning job. Soap can have one of three quality levels for its anti-grime(bacterial) qualities -- since I don't have any additives or special stuff yet (I have SirHoneyBadger's notes on that), all the current soap is just set to work at the middle level, but it is in the raws. Eyelids clean the eyes so you don't have to soap them off, but if an eyelid is torn off, I think they might soap the eyes. Sutures, dressings and casts help prevent infections as well.
Scamps met Threetoe's pet Mola mola from oceansunfish.org.
Threetoe has written a new story, The Assassination of Zecalo Bronzeflower, in which you can follow the twisted knots of treachery. As usual it has been posted up in the story section and there's a forum thread started for it.
I did crutch walking a few days ago, which will be especially good for one-legged dwarves that would otherwise be crawling around wherever they go. Now they'll move faster and faster as they get comfortable with their new crutch. I've been working on plaster orthopedic casts and some more reaction options have come out of that, like the use of the kiln and dumping products in container "reagents" (like an empty bag). I didn't really want to say "orthopedic casts" in a fantasy game, "surgical" or "medical" cast sounded too specific and too weird respectively, and I didn't want to just say "plaster cast" either, as that is ambiguous (especially if dwarves use plaster for other things later), so I'm going for "plaster arm cast", "plaster body cast" etc., I think. Or "gypsum plaster <etc.>", since there might be other kinds of plaster later. It can't be called plaster of Paris or the dwarves would never find it.
Wounds are now dressed with portions of a cloth object. This currently speeds healing somewhat and stems bleeding a bit if there is some. I'm kind of leaning toward throwing in a very quick and easy-to-do-and-replace placeholder for infection just to give things even more of a point (especially rot surgeries, but dressings and sutures as well), but it's not 100% clear.
Any water splashed on to a creature, item or vegetation will wash any clingy contaminant filth on to the ground (blood, vomit, mud, etc.). Dwarves can also take a job to clean themselves up. It's still a little up in the air as to whether they'll be able to sneak drinks when they do these jobs, as that would save time but also rob them of precious alcohol unless they start drinking alcohol when they aren't thirsty (which wouldn't be that mindboggling)... however it might need to wait for party rewrites and so on to be at its best. If I don't change it I don't think the extra cleaning job will be that disruptive of a time sink, since cleanings are done fairly infrequently overall, even if a dwarf's feet/shoes constantly become caked in filth, and dwarves that are stuck drinking water can still sneak a wash.
Auto-trimming of hair and nails (and any styled tissue layer) is also handled, at least for civilized creatures. Animals etc. just won't have growing hair or nails to simulate their natural appearance for now. If there's some situation (like a "play now!" adventurer) where the normally-civilized critter doesn't have an entity affiliation, hair will currently be unkempt and grow out, and nails will also grow long. I'll sort that out later, since that's the only situation I can think of where it would happen. Right now a civilized adventurer will also keep the style/length that they are given at the start of the game. Allowing you to change your style/length may or may not be in the cards this time around, and definitely will be later on.
I finished off the concerns I had with splints and put in sutures, which will make the wounds heal faster, even if there aren't any infections to give them even more of a purpose. Once the wound is completely healed, the suture item will dissolve (I thought about having them taken out instead, but there will be time to worry about that sort of thing later, maybe). Until the item disappears, it appears in the creature's inventory much as a stuck-in weapon would.
The topic vote for the main discussion segment of Dwarf Fortress Talk #3 has been posted.
I used the Labor Day weekend to overhaul the job system to support some things I'm going to need for suturing. All cloth and thread items have associated lengths/areas now. At this point, the practical effect will be that one thread item can be used to suture many times, while the same thread item would be consumed entirely to make the typical cloth item. It'll also be used for bandages. Having clothing item production consume different amounts of cloth probably won't go in this time, but it's just a matter of putting in the numbers now. There shouldn't be additional clutter from that once I get there, since items aren't actually being split (as with coins and bolts), but just consumed in pieces, and small remnants will always fit right in at a hospital. In this release, you'll just have items being whittled away at the hospital or being consumed in full for clothing, so even the remnant hauling shouldn't be a problem.
Zach and I brought Scamps over to visit our parents, and after an evening of play he chewed a few of the pitchers off of my mother's pitcher plant. She doesn't know that yet, because she had just gone to bed when the mayhem started. I noticed the trouble when he carried one of the pitchers over to me and dropped it for fetch. After a few tosses, I rescued the remainder of the plant. The bad kitty will have to make amends later.
They excise rotten tissue from wounds now, and they'll amputate limbs that are too rotted to save. Fortunately, I remembered to make them check that they aren't amputating important bits like the head or lower body (although if the head or lower body is actually that rotten, the critter probably would have died already just from raw body damage). Since I had to put infections and systemic problems off, the rotting tissue isn't indirectly harmful like it should be, so for now we can consider it part of odor prevention or something. Though rotting wounds don't smell either. I guess we can just consider it valuable practice for budding surgeons.
We've got a transcript avaiable now for DF Talk #2, again produced by the amazing mallocks.
I've been working on hospital building handling and then into setting bones for simple fractures, traction for difficult overlapping fractures and surgery for disgusting compound fractures. All of that's done now aside from some final tests to make sure the hospital works in an orderly fashion, which I'll probably put off until I've finished the other things I need to do there. Although it should really be like this for almost every skill, I've made surgery a bit more of a task for people that don't know what they are doing. If you ask some random dwarf to perform surgery, patients beware!
Here's the second Dwarf Fortress Talk that Rainseeker, Capntastic, Ampersand and I recorded back on the 29th: forum thread, direct link (~42MB,~91 minutes). Questions for next time can be asked in this thread.
I made a joke about them placing brain splints, over in the list thread I think, and that actually turned out to be true. It wasn't even checking if the part was internal/external. In any case, I'm back to healthcare now.
The next SDL/OpenGL/etc update 40d15 is up. This one should fix some screen update problems and give you a little more control over your zooming. The thread for feedback is here (currently a 40d14 thread).
The recording for episode #2 of Dwarf Fortress Talk went well today, with episode #1 vets Rainseeker and Capntastic as well as new guest host Ampersand. We should have that up at some point after the post-production, in not-too-super-long.
I fixed up various problems with tendons, ligaments, nerves, arteries, etc. yesterday and today I did stranger tests, like starting a couple of magma men with iron mauls and seeing how the crust/magma layers interacted as they whacked each other. Magma men are dense critters and they don't move any slower than regular people, so even without weapons they have pretty heavy hands. You should avoid boxing them if you can!
Large mobs of groundhogs can still kill things they wouldn't normally kill, but that's more of a problem with AI, since the guy with the dagger focused too long on an injured one and was slowly chewed up, coupled with the lack of aiming and the fact that groundhogs can hit targets high up. The materials seem to be working well, and an armored, well-trained human with a maul was able to take on 20 at a time without being injured. Three tiger took care of that, though.
Anyway, I'm more or less satisfied, so I've marked off combat and will be moving on to other sections next month. The next few days I have Dwarf Fortress Talk #2 to record, crayon art to draw, and some other things, so this might be the last entry until September.
I'm back to combat text, which still involves some retooling of things as the text illuminates further problems, but I'm closer to being done with the combat revision, anyway. I found a lot of things wrong with the groundhog bite today. First, a groundhog ripped a lion in half and bit off a dwarf's arms... and it was using every part of its head (eyes, nose, etc.), not just its teeth, for the biting. After I fixed that up, it was still using its teeth like little needles and piercing brains and so on. I eventually got that sorted out.
I had a dragon fight some lions, and after a little bit of dragonfire and close combat, I ended up with a dragon covered with the gramatically-in-progress "lion melted fat spatter".
We posted a little teaser for the newly-named Dwarf Fortress Talk in this thread yesterday. The silent actor Scamps is featured. You can also vote there on which topic you'd like us to have a discussion segment about in the next show, among three choices.
The basic arena I described last time is up and running with creatures that can be created with items and skills. You can make as many creatures as you want and they can be assigned to teams or set to go it alone. You can have as many teams as you want (well, 100, but that should be enough). There are still various dwarf-mode residue problems to sort out, and several creature problems have come to light. We wanted to test a shark vs. whale confrontation, and they just ended up tail slapping each other. Lots of welts all around. I haven't figured that one out yet. I'm guessing the teeth are too small to be registered or something, so the sharks go to their secondary attack, but there are lots of candidates. Various other mistakes have already been fixed, from arena critters all starting off by self-targeting (and succeeding in hitting themselves) to dragons having their sizes rollover to negatives and being treated as formless ghosts as a result.
Various monster tests. Played as a crocodile (bite works), played as a bronze colossus (after an early mishap where somebody punched my leg off, it now works), played as a magma man (grabbed somebody by the head with both of my hands and waited for his cloth cap and face to catch on fire, which worked, though it needs a little work, since his brain was never heated). Added the mail/breastplate distinction by adding a "structural elasticity" flag for woven/chain items. And a few other quibbly things with gas injections and propelling people away with strikes.
I'm going ahead with the arena idea we discussed a bit before -- not arenas in adventure mode, but a mod testing mode. The current simple idea, which can be expanded after this release, is to allow the selection of a raw folder (either the main one or one of the ones associated to a current save, active or not) and to create a 144x144x9 arena with a floor, sky, magma and water. Next up is being able to stick critters in there with equipment and skills, and give them sides. Then you could have them fight and read the combat reports, or jump into one of them and play using adventure mode controls, or just see if they can walk around or live in general. I've got a creatureless version of it up and running in a stripped down dwarf mode -- there are lots of things to fix up, since there isn't any civilization information etc. loaded up and dwarf mode doesn't really like that. This time around, you can't save anything and there are no buildings or jobs created. We can do stuff like that later, after this release is up. The purpose here is basic creature/weapon/armor/material testing.
Scamps is okay, though he's still a bit lethargic, and he detests his new radar collar, though it stops him from chewing on his wounded nether regions, so it is for the best.
The most significant addition today was an overall notion of a "square" shot, so that, say, a crossbow bolt can hit full force but just not break a bone because it didn't have a line on the center of the part. Attacks with better relative rolls and relative contact areas are more likely to get a chance to hit all of the tissues, and only strikes that hit all of the tissues get a chance at driving through a path of organs as well. This also stops weapons like long swords and axes from severing everything they hit, since on close rolls they will just end up giving nasty slashes instead that avoid the bones and organs entirely, even if the force of the swing is sufficient to cleave all the way through the body.
There are still a few things I really want to do before I move out of combat. One of them is a further nerfing of ranged weapons, at least to the extent I can mess with it now (I can't do much about firing rate yet), and there are a few other minor issues that need doing (mail vs breastplate behavior, checking out bites).
I had somebody shoot my toe off with a crossbow, which was cool, because it was after the slash vs. pierce merge. It just happened that the toe was narrow enough to be removed.
I got to test out the sort of reverse compound fracture thingies where a piece is knocked inward rather than out through the skin. Right now the relationships for the ribs are a little too general, so in the example a left rib goes through the liver (rather than a more appropriate right rib, but that's okay for now. The current text: "You bash The Farmer in the upper body with your bismuth bronze war hammer, bruising the muscle, jamming the left floating rib through the liver tissue and tearing the liver!" There are various issues -- mentioning the bruise is a little weird since it's not that important, the mention of the liver tissue vs the liver tear could be compacted, there are actually two floating ribs on that side and it doesn't go into exactly what happened there, and The Farmer is capitalized (which is an older problem), but it works well enough for now so I'm not going to spend a lot more time on the text. This one also demonstrates the body part relationships nicely though -- the rib was struck first, and it shows a compound-style fracture acting between different parts (rather than just a bone through skin in a single part).
I also grabbed somebody's exposed guts and did the only thing you can do with them currently, which is pinch them. It's an unfortunate game.
I'm staying up late tonight to take Scamps to the vet in the morning. It is time for his big routine operation. I guess he'll be radar'd up for two weeks, which is going to be pretty extreme for such an active cat. Anyway, that's in under an hour, so I'd better wrap up!
I've been going back and forth between combat text and balancing combat numbers. Edged weapons, doing both thrusts and slashes, as well as natural attacks are more or less done, and it respects armor and large/small creatures in what seems like a good balance. Blunt weapons still need to be done, as they are swinging slowly and only bruising right now, and I just need to get a fix in that doesn't break something else. In any case, work is ongoing.
Here is the thread for 40d14. The download links are near the top of the first post. This is the updated version of 40d that should be faster for lots of people. It also has other improvements listed there and it is compatible with old saves. If it's not working please let us know in the thread! We will continue to fix it up as we head toward the main release, whenever that might be.
There's a 10 question interview up over at PC Cohort.
Combat text continues to be in progress. It's mostly about contracting many little recorded events and pulling out the important ones to cut the number of sentences down and to try to make interesting single sentences out of several events when it can. For instance, a strike will generally go through several layers of clothing, but it's mostly not worth reporting that unless there's an actual deflection, and in that case it should only report it briefly -- however, it can occasionally also include a piece of clothing if there wasn't much damage, like being bruised through a shirt. Or more colorfully, handling events for compound fractures being pushed out through previous gaping wounds or hanging flesh after a sharply-angled hack, that sort of thing. These will come up in the new dwarf mode combat logs as well as adventure mode. Anyway, I'll spend a bit more time on it and then continue on to finishing this entire section off.
Today I started off by giving states (powder/gas/etc.) to contact attack materials (eg venom), as it was assuming they were liquids. I stopped wrestling for non-solid creatures until there's more of an idea of what's going on there, and I allowed temperature transfer between wrestlers (between both bodyparts and items).
The main project I embarked on today though was just getting a lot of the combat numbers balanced out now that most everything is settled with the bodies. Punches are working pretty well now, though during a brief time while fixing that the crossbows started shooting me in completely half (because the contact area was being miscalculated -- it was more like they were firing giant saws or something).
Now the issue is pretty much down to thrusting attacks being too weak compared to larger area attacks with the same force behind them, and I might be throwing in things like making your gloves/gauntlets affect your punches (etc.) and fleshing out more of the differences between a mail shirt and a breastplate (since it doesn't know about the flexibility of the mail shirt yet, since that's a quality of the item's construction rather than the material itself). I also have the combat text to clean up, and then I can close off the wounds section. Item damage is probably too much to ask for this time around, but I won't completely red it out of the list until I'm sure.
I added descriptions for active wounds in the paragraphs and finished off scars. In the previous description links, the olivine problem that was there was fixed as well. As usual, there are further explanations in response to questions over at the list thread. Here is the latest one on descriptions (and other things at first), and here are the main posts from July:
July 25, part 2
July 25, part 1
I'm more or less through with descriptions for this time around. Obviously more is going to be done there, and I might tweak descriptions as I'm going through other things, but the main points have been addressed, so I've greened it out on the list. It's kind of an endless pit into which work can be dropped, and it's good to close it off for this release I think.
I added in a little under 500 phrases for various mixes of height/width/length/strength/fat (about 320 apply to dwarves and other humanoid shaped critters). I also put in ~150 phrases for attribute values. I still need to do wounds and some of the raw values I mentioned before, so the following are all preliminary but here are some dwarves viewed prior to embark (there are also some conflicts between mental atts and personalities that need to be ironed out -- willpower for example):
Mannerisms are done, at least as far as they'll be done this time around. There are 65 types, with 3 to 5 situation qualifiers on average (of 15) for each of them. Things like "always scratches his head when he's trying to remember something", "laughs at his own jokes" or "talks to herself whenever she's bored", that sort of thing. It controls which ones they get based on their personalities and the raws. Having them is not important in terms of actual mechanics at this point, but it's good to have some more flesh on the descriptions. I'm almost done with the descriptions overall, though it would be easy to sink a lot of time into wound descriptions in the paragraphs given the amount of information floating around now. Hopefully I can seal this section off quickly.
Here's the first official Bay 12 Skype call Rainseeker, Capntastic and I recorded at the end of last month: forum thread, direct link (~40MB,~80 minutes). You can ask questions for next time in this thread.
I made some progress on mannerisms today. We've also been trying to put together 40d14 but there are some problems on Windows, so it has been delayed a bit. I also had a black-out for an hour or so, and I eventually took the opportunity to clean up prior to a possible apartment inspection tomorrow, though I was sort of scratching my head in directionless confusion for a while there.
It was Zach's birthday today. In honor of the occasion, it'll now display a dwarf's birthday and his or her age in the description, if the world is old enough for that to make sense. Otherwise it'll just put the effective age. I've also done some more with descriptions in general, though not enough to call it good yet.
Greened out another section on the list. Doing that mostly involved adding a notion of energy storage after eating and then making fat and muscular dwarves become larger, both overall and by the specific tissue, with effects on speed, insulation, taking damage, combat effects like being knocked over, etc. It uses the recuperation attribute to differentiate them metabolically at this point, so some dwarves will retain more fat than others, assuming they are eating the same amount. For now, tissues can only be set to thicken according to strength (like muscles) and/or energy storage (like fat). It's still pretty lax with clothing, so you shouldn't have to worry about making clothes in different sizes, either for children or different adults.
I started with some wrestling updates today, and then I finished up the creature raws. There are a few things related to descriptive paragraphs (mostly having to do with eye color and how pointy elf ears are) that I'm going to finish when I complete that part. When I was going through the raws doing various updates, I found that there were lots of extra toes everywhere. Goats with hooves and toes, mermaids with toes on their tails...
Today I fixed up some of the combat announcement text and also updated wounds for historical figures to the new system. This included some updates to make mega-beasts and other critters survive much more easily during world generation, corresponding to their size and materials (though it's still rough compared to the real fights). I had a dwarven hero try to kill a bronze colossus seven times, and each time he lost (including one time where he got boxed in the ear). After the third duel, he began worshipping his enemy, which is appropriate for these changes, I think.
The recording went well on the 30th, though I was stuck in my miserable apartment and we had to re-record the first half hour after a software failure, so I might come off as a little spent, he he he. We should have that processed at some point coming up here.
The report for this month is here.
There was an excessive heat warning and an air stagnation advisory today, which I guess means Death descends on your location and then slowly rots there. I only have a few fans blowing air on me, and they hardly help, so progress has been slowed. Poor Mr. Scamps was panting! It's supposed to get even worse over the next few days, and I'm going to try to not be in this miserable apartment for a lot of that time. Scamps will be coming with me of course. I don't have a laptop anymore, but I can do some useful planning on paper most likely. Hopefully it'll have eased up a little by the 30th when we do the recording I mentioned a few weeks ago, since I'll want the fans off for that.
I cleaned up all sorts of minor raw file trouble today that had accumulated over the months. During the course of that I also made it group the error messages by file name, and it'll also (mostly) tell you which creature/etc. entry it had trouble with, which should be useful for quickly finding your own mistakes in mods. I still haven't done a ton of bounds-checking there, though some of the new tags self-correct and log an error explaining what they did to fix themselves.
Drills and sparring are up, though I wasn't able to finish testing sparring because of the general rough edges around combat right now.
Scamps was scratching at the guitar strings while the guitar was in its stand. I was going to go stop him when he managed to pluck a very solid A, at which point he stopped messing around and let it ring out. I will look forward to future hits assuming the strings don't start breaking.
Finally got my first group of completely skill-free dwarves attending a striking demonstration given by a proficient dwarf. The teaching/learning skills/att/personality stuff is all up and running, and it was nice to see the students get their first skill increases (they also learned to be better students and how to concentrate better, he he he, as well as working on several of their mental attributes, which come back to increase the quality of their learning). The naturally distractable/lazy dwarves need to make harder rolls during these passive presentations or they blank during some of their lessons, though they can overcome their deficits with skill and attribute improvements. Aside from the teaching/conversation skills, teachers also learn a little bit about the skill they are teaching when they teach, though the students learn more, especially if the skill gap is large (assuming the teacher is effective). You'll still sometimes have demonstrations even if everybody is at roughly the same level, and they'll all learn a bit, but they'll mostly be practicing and sparring, once I get that up. Hopefully some of the underlying stuff that's going on will come across in their thoughts, but I haven't written those up yet and we'll see if I have the time.
Now I just need to co-opt the old sparring code to get them to participate a bit, which won't take long. They'll probably drill more first. If nobody is available with a combat skill to get the ball rolling in a demonstration, they'll just try the best they can to reinvent the wheel. I imagine the penalties for that will get steeper and steeper over time, for a broader array of professions, but it won't be a big deal for now. I guess if you also land a reckless no-skill session leader that wants them to spar seriously when they have zero experience, you might experience traditional injury rates, although training weapons should still mitigate the disaster. Archers have it easier, as they'll learn how to use a crossbow from somebody if they can and then just practice on the targets, although if they run out of practice ammo and their squad is set to train that month, as it stands they'll probably all punch and wrestle each other, unless you've also got guys with axes in their squad, in which case they'll also wrestle the guys with axes.
Threetoe wrote a new story, Moclem, in which a village is haunted by a demonic monster. As usual it has been posted up in the story section and there's a forum thread started for it.
The training update is underway. Things should be quite a bit more organized now, as outlined in the list, with a few different activities for you to watch as the critters are training in the barracks. The framework for meetings and parties is going to be merged with the new training framework. This should allow dwarves at parties, for instance, to do single and group activities like playing instruments or dancing a bit more easily than it otherwise would have been. I'm not sure if I'll throw in any of that this time around, but it's possible, since there should be some very low-hanging fruit there.
Basic equipment grabbing is back up, so I can think about starting training now, though there's a bit more to do at some point with armor/clothing conflicts and so on. I also fixed an issue causing smaller maps not to have much temperature variation from north to south, and I expanded the invasion triggers in the entity defs to allow you to pick your own population/etc. triggers for full sieges (until I get something better in, which can happen once we've got actual armies moving around the world map, which is not for this release).
Soldiers are now divided up and assigned to their squad's scheduled orders such as patrols/training and so on according to hunger, thirst, etc. as well as preference settings and to match staffing minimums set in the schedule, and they know what equipment they should use. It'll periodically swap out soldiers to try to keep all of the month's schedule items staffed without interruptions. If it is unable to find replacements, soldiers will staff positions until they are starving (which shouldn't happen if you don't order them all to be someplace). In any case, now they just need to run out and grab their assigned equipment and start following their orders.
I got a chance to test alerts and burrows today. I set a couple of 3x3 burrows a good distance (~60 tiles) apart outside and made two alerts, each one restricting civilians to a different burrow. Then I mercilessly shifted the alert state back and forth. They ran between the two rectangles, responding immediately to each change. I didn't see any "entrance dance" style movement, and the fisherdwarf that was out fishing cancelled his job promptly and joined in on the fun. There are probably problems here and there, but it seems to be working fine. Generally, they'll search out meeting halls and other places to hang out in the alert burrows, but if they don't have any of those, they'll just stand anywhere in the burrow. They can work in the alert burrows, but I haven't yet handled merging regular burrow assignments with civilian alert burrow assignments (I'll do that before the release). There's a lot that can be done here, but this initial step will keep civilians safely tucked away while your soldiers deal with an immediate threat.
Continuing along with the scheduler and so on. I threw in some basic art images associated to statues and figurines. A workshop full here. I didn't have time to do much with them, so they are pretty much like item decorations, engravings or coin images right now in terms of content.
I finished the automatic portion of barracks equipment assignment to squad positions, to complement the manual settings. The racks are shared by the squad positions (since they currently store 5 weapons each), and it should handle dual-weapon (or more for mods) assignments properly.
I'm currently working on their notion of what clothing dwarves want to wear in such a way that they should want to snatch up clothing lost during wrestling and so on a little more eagerly, and so they can move in and out of uniform using their squad cabinets and so on. I also need to make sure the newly-arrived immigrant dwarves don't suddenly throw their clothes on the ground and that kind of thing, since there's a new layer of thinking that needs to be respected. Once this is handled, they'll be able to use their training equipment correctly, or put away their regular weapons for unarmed training, and I can get started on the actual training update, which is the bulk of what's left for squads.
I've been doing work on sorting out squad equipment assignments and so on. It's a slog, but I finished the meat of it today.
After the last podcast interview, several people mentioned or reiterated an interest in us trying out something of our own. That's come together a bit over the last few days, and we now have a forum thread where people are suggesting questions for a recording which is to be made at the end of the month. The main thread is here.
The next update for the SDL/OpenGL branch, 40d13, is up. Input may work better than before, the mouse wheel zoom may work better than before, adventure mode will likely work at all, compared to 40d12, and there's a map string export to help out the visualizer writers. You can also try out the new VBO print mode in init.txt, though it might not result in any speed increases for you (or it could just flat out crash).
Today had sort of a holiday feeling, with all the explosions, so I ended up working on hidden fun stuff.
Speaking of which, those that attended the second meetup and perhaps those that listened in on the web heard about some of the HFS going in this time around. I figured I might as well let the rest of you see the same information over in the spoiler section. It's something of a big spoiler, compared to, say, the material raws I posted before, so consider well before diving in. Here is the spoiler.
I cleaned up several more minor issues over the last few days, and that section is looking more green now. This is going well, so I'll decide in the morning whether I want to do some more of these or if I'll get back to the squad additions.
I started off with some minor issues today concerning webs, miasma, corpse materials, etc., and set some other affairs in order. Hopefully by working these things in on occasion I can avoid some of the long and dreary slog at the end where I'm cleaning up random crumbs without having anything interesting to report. I should be back to squads tomorrow or the next day, depending on how I feel about wiping out a few more of these critters. They are in the next to last list category.
The new champion entity position is in, so the old champion unit types are out. Out too are all of the restrictions on changing equipment on your "elite/lord/master" soldiers, and they don't have to be soldiering all the time, though when I do weapon familiarity/attachments there might be some downsides to fiddling with their cherished crap.
If you haven't been following the list thread closely, I've collected this month's larger Q&A posts, often concerning the things I've been working on this month, but also concerning previous stuff and future stuff:
Weapon types beyond the usual six are now supported by squads and other pieces of fortress mode. This'll mostly come up in mods, but you could also bump into a situation where you would really want to use the many scourges or bows/arrows that are around (if you find yourself under attack after a siege and short on weapons for whatever reason, say).
I mostly spent the last few days just cleaning uniform/equipment stuff up, though, and now I can move on to storage and shuffling actual items around, and that should connect up with training equipment and the rest of the squad training rewrites.
You can establish uniforms for your soldiers now. The main idea was to let you easily set a bunch of dwarves to the same armor type, but if you want to set up a uniform with midnight blue silk hoods, steel axes, leather boots, absolutely nothing else, and then apply it to every squad, that's between you and your conscience. The dwarves should shuffle their regular clothes off to squad-assigned cabinets if there are conflicts/restrictions, but you can also just have them put on some armor over their regular clothes as usual. It would still be annoying to get those hoods dyed correctly, but it would be a little easier to do with a burrow and a few custom stockpiles anyway.
There are various ways to tweak the equipment settings for individuals within a squad, and it all goes by the squad position and not the individual dwarf, though you can let a dwarf choose to use their favored melee weapon if ones available, if you don't care what they use. You can also assign specific individual items to squad positions. This mostly matters for artifacts, or if you are just really particular about equipment or some piece of new equipment. Setting an individual item will stop periodic upgrades for that piece of equipment, once I get those in.
Some of these commands/upgrades will be enabled/facilitated by an appointee in larger forts, but as long as you've got that dwarf working in their office it shouldn't be noticeably restrictive. This appointee currently sits around doing nothing, but that should be up soon.
Veteran DFer Nilocy wants you to know that he just bought a Team Fortress 2 server for the Dwarf Fortress Community. Head over to the forum thread for details.
Beds, racks, stands, boxes/chests and cabinets can now be assigned to squad positions. This is optional. So if you want to lay out your dwarves a certain way, you can, or you can risk letting the computer try if you don't want to fiddle with it. You can make barracks from boxes and cabinets now. For boxes, this would mainly be for training ammunition storage near an archery target, and there's not much of a reason for barracks cabinets now, though it might come up depending on how armor eventually gets sorted. Archery ranges now accept squad assignments. With furniture sorted out, I can move on to the meat of equipment selection.
Each barracks now accepts squad assignments for sleeping, training, individual equipment storage and squad equipment storage (which just means ammunition for now). There's also a dormitory setting separate from the barracks setting to indicate that civilians without rooms should sleep in the room. Hospital zones were added earlier. This should keep the beds separated properly.
I've been working on the order scheduler and associated screens. Nothing exciting to talk about that I haven't already mentioned, but I should be moving on pretty soon.
So somebody asked if it's possible to use civilians for jobs and so on while the alert is on, in the zone to which they've been restricted. I was originally thinking more of shorter alerts where you just wanted to get them away from someplace dangerous while you fought something out. However, while I was working on it, I decided I might as well make it more diverse, so I put in burrows.
The ill-named burrows are larger sections of your fortress where dwarves live and work and to which you can restrict their movements. Dwarves can be assigned to multiple burrows, and you can paint them with your mouse in a few brush sizes or lay them out in multiple rectangles (a burrow need not be a rectangle). Any number of burrows can overlap and you can give them names and an ASCII symbol.
Dwarves will only use workshops, stockpiles, living areas, meeting halls, etc. in the burrows to which they are assigned. I've removed all of the "entrance dance" code so that they can survive the mental trauma of not being in their assigned locations, and they can cross locations that aren't in their burrow, but they'll maintain the restrictions in the general sense described above.
There are many, many ways in which this can be useful for controlling labor (you could even have your experienced miners mine veins of your choosing in this way -- it'd be a slightly clunky workaround, but it works). Just the basic burrow mechanic is powerful enough that it is pretty exploitable, so there will be several ways in which dwarves either move beyond their burrows or are affected adversely by heavy restrictions, but I'll leave those for you to find. These effects should all make sense and not be all that restrictive on play, especially if you are respectful to your critters (for instance, having your soap makers all stand in a 3x3 corner in the main hall until they starve to death shouldn't proceed as planned for very long).
A dwarf not specifically assigned to a burrow can work anywhere, but in the future there might be, say, a restricted burrow setting or something that'll exclude such dwarves. There are also items posted on dev about burrow hauling jobs and burrow production limits and all of whatever -- I haven't done any of that. Things like restricting manager orders to certain burrows etc. would all be great (and faster than doing it via particular workshops in general), but I don't want to get too far afield for this release (since I'm already far afield). In any case, the core work and mechanics are done.
Getting back to the immediate topic, alerts can now just restrict civilians to a set of burrows, with the further restriction that they should get to this set of burrows with priority. If a dwarf then doesn't feel comfortable working there because they were previous assigned to areas outside the alert area, they'll be idle as before, but it's a smaller problem than the one described in the beginning of the first paragraph, and it can be easily corrected if you plan on or are forced to stay in that alert state for a prolonged period. Giving individual dwarves different burrow assignments based on their alert state could be a future possibility (perhaps in conjunction with the work-gang class of ideas), but that's not in the cards for this release.
I posted 40d12 (the next SDL/OpenGL revision) for a few minutes before the first people that spotted it in the testing thread noticed some show-stoppers, so that's still an ongoing mission.
Scamps managed to slowly yank at my monitor cable long enough to completely kill the blue channel (not at the connection up there, he's pretty good on the desk compared to down below). So I had to go out and get a new one. At one every two months this could get to be an expensive hobby for him.
The "stay indoors" order has been removed from the game. It has been replaced with three pre-defined-and-changeable and as many custom alert states as you like. Alert states determine which schedule a squad uses and also have a few parameters defining how civilians behave as well. This means you should be able to make a alert called "Underground Attack" that makes squads carry out whatever plan you have regarding plugging up an invasion of ratmen from an underground layer while the civilians meanwhile cancel their jobs and run up to the highest meeting hall you have, while your alert called "External Siege" might see the civilians run down to your lowest meeting hall while the squads run over to the towers and gates... or just wait for the traps to do their job. That's a later adjustment.
I was interviewed by one of our forum-goers, Languidiir, and his co-host, A Madman, for the podcast he's started up on the MS Paint Adventures forum. You can grab it from our site here. It is 60MB and four hours of gabbing about DF past, present and future, basically.
Kill orders can be given to your selection of squads and individual units either associated to the critters at the cursor (you can pick among them if there is more than one there), or the critters within a rectangle, or the critters you select from a list, or all of the critters associated to squads at the cursor. Testing hasn't been thorough, so this might change, but right now your dwarves will preferentially target those critters for whom they have kill orders, and they'll seek out their locations if they don't have a target.
Kill orders can be given regarding any creature not directly under your fort's control, though as to why on earth you'd want to kill the elven dignitaries, well, I just have no idea.
In terms of squad activation, dwarves activate as soldiers immediately when they receive an order (or later when they have an item on their schedule that demands activation). Once the new equipment system is in, we'll have to see how an order given to a civilian will mesh with that now-soldier rushing off to grab their equipment first. It should take less time to grab the equipment in any case, since it'll all be in the same place if they have their racks/stands assigned and prepared properly.
You can give direct squad movement orders, rather than those issued according to schedule, in the way that stationing works (according to the present cursor location), or you can pop over to any of your predefined points and use those to get things done a little faster. You can issue movement orders to several squads at once or several individuals across squads, as I mentioned last time. It stores these orders either in the squad or for a given squad position, so the death or swapping out of a squad member will not change the movement or other orders associated to the squad. I haven't yet handled the cancellation of orders, which will probably be associated to the alert status -- if you tell a squad or individual to go back to their scheduled routine, it would imply cancelling the orders, though that might be tweaked depending on what seems most natural (or if multiple options or full order displays come up or make more sense).
More advanced devices are possible, like having different orders associated to different alert states, or having a series of orders stored up that can be activated for a squad at any time, but I'm not sure what will come in this time. The system should easily support the expansion in any case.
I've been interrupted recently by a raucous birthday party for my father as well as some reading I got hooked on for the month-end project, but there isn't going to be a month-end break once again, so I still think this will be a good month, as slow as things have been updating on the list. And the lack of month-end break will be better than the last time I tried that, most likely.
As he won't have it otherwise apparently, Scamps is now allowed on my desk while I'm working. He's sleeping there between the keyboard and the monitor right now.
In a new main-view mode replacing 'x', squads are selected in real-time (or paused if you pause it -- one-stepping is also available. There will be an option to put you into pause as usual if you are used to working like that). Individual dwarves within a squad can also be selected (several across different squads if you find it necessary). At the squad level, you'll be able to access formation, alert and organization information (as soon as it exists!), and at any selection level, you'll be able to give simple move/attack orders that override any schedule.
The tentative setup is to allow you to organize your fortress into squads by selecting a militia commander over as many militia captains as you want, as well as a fortress guard as a squad under the sheriff (possibly with captains depending on how that turns out) as well as the royal guard squad under the hammerer under the baron/count/duke (again, possibly with captains). Adding those extra captains is a matter of a few lines in the entity definition, so a decision might not come for a while. We went with the tentative word militia simply because regular military words were reserved for the civilization army, and your dwarves often fulfill both civilian and military roles depending on their activation state. Many players keep a full-time military, so things might change here at some point or mix in with the civilization level. Although they are appointed, the captains don't have any special requirements in terms of rooms or furniture or anything like that, so you should be able to do what you like there as far as having several squads.
Limits on squad size are still up for discussion. There's no technical reason why you couldn't just stuff 100 dwarves into a single squad (though it would rarely be a good idea), so there might not be any meaningful cap. However, there should probably be a number of problems that arise out of having such a broad number of critters under the command of one officer. These could be handled by whatever mechanics come up when an officer is unassigned, dead or not present as well. I'm not sure what we'll end up with this time.
The note-taking mode has been expanded to a general system of points and routes for whatever purpose should arise for them. Right now, we're using them for station points and patrol routes. You can still use the points for note-taking exactly as before, and in this way you can also leave a note at a station point/waypoint without having to switch modes. You can also give the points and routes names (if you don't, they are referred to by a number).
I finished and sent out the first pass of 40d12 to collaborator Baughn today. It uses some dynamically-linked files, which should speed up that development branch if it all works out. Back to the military tomorrow.
I got the military control rewrite underway today, gutting many things and separating out squad information. I should be able to start the new screens/modes tomorrow with the first goal probably being simple movement orders and getting patrol routes up again.
As for 40d12, that's still in progress. Instead of getting it out at the end of the month, my linux died and was reborn (the latter with Baughn's help). Now I just need to do some simple reorganization tasks for it as I'm doing the military stuff.
There's a lot coming up with squads, so we just sat down today for some hours and sorted out more precisely how things will be, and by the time I got all the notes written up and sorted in, it was whatever time it is now. The summary for squads on the list doesn't have much of the detail, but the entry has been expanded in any case.
The general idea is to give each squad a yearly schedule with monthly activities. The squads are led by captains that answer to an appointed commander (the overall dwarven civ has a little more structure than that, but it won't be used in dwarf mode yet). You can appoint as many captains as you like. The scheduled activities for a given month will be related to patrol routes or station points (to be separated from squads), standing down to sort out equipment and personal matters etc., being entirely off duty or training. Staffing levels can be set to give dwarves a chance to eat/drink/resupply, and I'll try to get them to keep their assignments maintained at appropriate levels. Sleeping will probably be handled through monthly settings, so you can encourage them to sleep on months where you don't mind losing a game-week or whatever it is of activity, and you should be able to have them sleep either in one group or respecting staffing levels.
There will be a new screen with all of the squads on it that is allowed to run in real-time (or paused). From here, you can give out simple orders that break the squads out of their schedule and set them on an alert status, so that they ignore their schedule and pursue their specific orders until you tell them not to. Orders will be to move here and assume this formation, or to kill this group of creatures, maybe a few others. You should be able to hand out orders to groups of squads or individual members if you like (normally you can't get too far inside a dwarf's head, but for military matters it is more acceptable, and you'd be able to do it with one-dwarf squads even if it weren't supported, so we're allowing it). You'll also be able to access the squad organization menus there (where you set schedules, pick dwarves, set formations etc.). Further fortress-wide notions of alert and what civilians and squads do in these cases is still under consideration. If it's not too time-consuming, things like the notorious stay-inside order might be scrapped entirely this time around.
Squads can be assigned to multiple barracks (and archery targets perhaps) with various (possibly multiple) activities in mind for each -- sleeping, storing equipment, and training. There should end up being various settings for squad equipment, so you can balance using the best weapons with using certain materials or whatever else, and individual settings can vary if you'd like to mix weapon types (which might be handy with formations). If you want to assign a particular item to a particular dwarf, you'll be able to do that, though there will be an appointee handling matters that will need to invest some time (generally, not for each assignment) to allow commanders to issue those orders if the fort is large. The appointee will also handle automatic upgrades to equipment if the squad wants them, so that equipment with better materials or quality can be assigned to a dwarf, who can then swap out equipment during the next available time (if staffing levels are high and they aren't on alert, they might be permitted to do this during duty times as well, depending on how it works out). The weapon options will include non-standard selections, which might incur some kind of complaint or penalty, but might be useful if you are reduced to scavenging non-dwarven weapons after some kind of tragedy and need to get something set up quickly (possibly in conjunction with arming civilians with whatever is sitting nearby depending on how fortress alert status settings progress).
It's still not 100% worked out, but there will be various forms of training, probably to be chosen by the instructor (who is possibly the commander, or the most skilled dwarf in the squad, if there's not an appointment for instructors that somehow transcends the squad structure -- the first two options are fastest). Training will include formation drills, which will allow your dwarves to hold the formations you select without problems and also to build their overall sense of discipline. Unskilled dwarves will be given some basic unarmed and partnerless weapon drills until they are judged ready to move up to sparring, though these drills should also continue even when sparring training is started. A motivated dwarf might use their standing down time to practice as well if they don't have new equipment assignments or other matters to see to. Training with the same partners might build something like squad cohesion, though what that does beyond further establishing formations would be up in the air, but it would eventually give you some things to think about as you break up skilled squads (to establish skilled new captains to better train recruits in their squads for example).
Elite soldiers (eg "axe lord" etc.) will have their options expanded to those of a regular soldier, though they might quibble if you change their weapon type, perhaps to the point of violence at times. There are some notions of individual weapon familiarity and so on that we are toying with as well, but it's unclear what's in and what's out there.
Finally, the notion of any dwarf gaining a legendary skill becoming a "champion" is going to be replaced by the notion of a single champion that can be appointed/crowned/whatever by the baron/count/duke (one reason to have/keep one). There are various options for what the champion might do, but at the very least, traditional-minded dwarven soldiers (a personality facet) would be bolstered by the presence of the champion.
This should all go in, though the time-table is unclear. Most of it is pretty straightforward, but there's a lot of it.
I've updated the appointment/noble screen. Next up is the military screen and the move over to squad work.
Threetoe has a new story up in the story section.
I think the last thing up this month will be the 40d12 release of the SDL/OpenGL updates.
Okay, that and some other little things are done. List updated. I haven't decided if I'm going to tackle another big technical list issue tomorrow (guards, the appointment screen, the military screen, etc.) or one of the more amusing ones (mount prefs, the new demon behavior, etc.).
At the meetup, somebody gave Scamps a toy you all agreed to call "the thing" or something like that. In any case, Scamps has chewed that in half, and he plays with both parts now.
About halfway through the baron update. You can also pass up the barony entirely at the cost of forming trade agreements with the homeland (as the placeholder, and who knows what repercussions in the final version, once we have better armies and diplomacy up).
Okay, the replacement and election issues have been handled. Next up are the nobility-type positions like barons and so on. The current idea is that once it is decided you've got a barony on your hands, your outpost liaison will come and allow you to make the king's selection of the new noble from your populace, and then that dwarf and his or her heirs would be elevated as usual as you pass up to the duchy level. Of course, we aren't actually doing the barony stuff yet, in terms of sending out armies and having other settlements and all that, but this should make you feel a little more invested in the process, anyway, until we get to the proper implementation. List updated.
All right, I've arrived at dwarf mode. Of course, I need to do more routine updates there before I get to the new military screen. Next up are positions that replace other positions after certain requirements are met (like the mayor replacing the expedition leader).
Given the overall shape of the month, the month-end project work is mostly cancelled this time around, so I'll be pushing straight through into June, with maybe a day or two off DF.
Continuing along with yesterday's work. The administration of conquered sites is up now, and it'll create a position from scratch if one isn't provided in the raws (or if the one in the raws can't be filled by current critters on account of requirements). We won't be to any noticeable difference until I get to dwarf mode in a day or two though.
All right, I'm back to work today. I'm currently doing one of the harder parts of this section, which is getting all of the positions filled by handling appointments, succession, elections and replacements from below, as defined for each position in the raws, respecting position restrictions such as gender requirements, first in world generation and then in dwarf mode as well.
There were requests for videos of Scamps rather than simply digital pictures. Such a video is now available on the forum here (uploaded on YouTube).
The symptoms have changed to the point that I can do some mindless HFS work and dev sorting, but nothing on entity positions without The Headache. I guess it'll mean less time needed for HFS when I get back to finishing off the underground, so it's all okay. Anyway, four days should be long enough, being sick. I vote for being better tomorrow. That would be cool. I feel pretty good right now, come to think of it, but I only have a few hours left.
Yeah, sick. I think I'm on the road to recovery and might be able to put in regular work tomorrow. Scamps has a (routine) vet appointment, so everybody is getting a chance to feel a little infirm. The last few days I've managed a little data entry and my standard forum/email stuff, but that's it. The screen still gives me a headache, so I've mostly been sleeping.
Apparently, if the lights are off and it is night time so that it is pitch black (as it is in my room at night), Scamps doesn't really recognize me and will hiss at me until I say something. So much for that sense of smell. Normally I don't sleep at night so I didn't notice. He's also taken to anticipating the throw sometimes when we play fetch, so it's more like fielding practice or trying to take a shot on goal.
List updated. Any of the new positions can be linked to creature graphics in the same way as before now. I've also put in my first code-generated positions using the religions. It should give the high priest a position name related to their religion, for example, though until I fix up the human entities I won't be able to test it and share some of them. It'll also use this sort of generation procedure for all of the goblin positions, hopefully in a somewhat more involved fashion.
I've become more and more sick over the course of the night, so I can't promise much for tomorrow, but we'll see. Next up is the general process of succession/appointment/election using the raw tokens, during world gen and for fortress positions during fortress mode.
The Bay 12 Meetup went well this year, and attendence was more than double last year, which was pretty cool. I put a few pictures up in the thread, though it wasn't the best lighting for a picture. People were kind enough to bring some toys for Scamps, and I should have some videos of him being introduced to the toys for you at some point. For now, it'll be back to work as usual. I'm still going through the many properties of position holders and getting them updated to the new raw format. List updated.
List updated. Still doing various basic updates, but we're getting there.
Continuing on with entity positions. Still doing the basics, like messing with an order of precedence so it knows how to name multiple position holders and so on. List updated.
Scamps has been playing fetch for a while now, with toys larger than his head, but today he tried a toy larger than himself -- the stuffed African wild dog. He managed to wrestle it and drag it back in turns until two complete cycles of fetch were played.
I'm starting with the entity position rewrite this month. Today I went through the notes and reorganized their list entry to remove some ambiguities and set things in more or less the order I want to follow. The primary goal here is to have some military structure in place for both the upcoming squad work as well as subsequent army releases.
Well, that's Underground Month. There's a bit left to do, especially down deep, but I did manage to get some new hidden fun stuff in over the last few days. I haven't decided exactly what I'll be working on next month, but I'll be starting on the 1st as usual. List updated.
The invasion infrastructure has been updated, and layer civs should be able to invade from off the side of the map with all their items and mounts and things, although I've only tested it a few times (past 7AM already...), so there are some fixes needed.
Scamps wanted to see how the kitchen sink worked today, so when I was washing the dishes, he clawed his way up (the outside, fortunately, of) my pants to the waist and watched.
The animal people civilizations are now placed in the layers, associated to large populations, and I added the map revealing mechanism that I mentioned back on the 3rd. I took my first adventurer down into an abandoned fort that had penetrated an underground layer and walked over to the next world map square, so that all seems to be working. Next up likely the attack revamp.
Today I set up a new entity definition for subterranean critters, so that some of the animal peoples will be able to use crude items as well as mounts again. This also involved setting up a different sort of regional population that can be recorded in the histories and linked to entities, so that it can track large numbers of creatures without realizing each one as a historical figure.
The next step is to get those placed in the layers so that it has a very large pool of critters to draw from, something that could theoretically be exhausted but wouldn't happen in practice in dwarf mode, as they don't have to send every last critter after you while they breed back up and you can't currently hunt all of them down (at which point the entire world will be opened up and the exhaustion of local critters won't matter so much, even assuming this is the only angle of attack from below, which isn't the case).
Mushroom forests are in, as are critters as regular wilderness-style populations that can enter the map (I still have to teach them how to leave). The next major goals are more specialized critters and other layer types. List updated.
Scamps's favorite toy to wrestle with is the stuffed animal sloth, which is larger than Scamps. It rolls around pretty well when batted, so it keeps the kitty occupied. The latest bout lasted for about ten minutes.
I messed around with pillars and passageways today. I haven't taught it about dead-ends at all yet, so everything is still fairly open. Plants and critters next.
layer 107: layer top
layer 104: most stuff here
layer 101: layer bottom
Mellow birthday today, as the entire event has actually been smeared out starting from when Scamps arrived. I think the current plan is to DF through the 25th now, rather than the 22nd, to make sure the first pass on the underground gets a nice chunk of development.
Dark Diamond has an interview up. It cuts out sometimes as the Skype settings were screwed up on my end for most of the time, but it's still mostly intact.
We'd also like to thank the people at Valve for showing us around and letting us mess with their stuff yesterday. There are a few DF fans there and one of them invited us over to take a look and hang out, which was pretty cool.
There are still a few corner leaks, but large lakes are in. Take the last maps and fill in some of the lower portions with water, basically. I also did a first pass on magma stuffs. I'll probably work on more constricted caves next, and then, likely, the shrooms and critters.
Scamps carries toys to the room he wants play in (generally where I'm at), he can open my cardboard boxes, and he has learned how to pull out the plugs of my electrical cords.
These aren't specifically indicative of anything that's going in the game, but here's an open cave layer I've been messing around with to test the layer join information. These show a lot of grid artifacts which can be removed. They are reminescent of the fractals used for the local outdoor maps, but it's done differently, so there's much more control over the maps and connections as the need arises.
This particular layer covers the entire world and can be walked through from end to end by an adventurer (though I haven't tested that yet, it looks fine so far). They don't all need to be so airy, but this one would be hard to miss digging down, compared to what we've currently got.
layer 54: wagon
layer 48: layer top, high cavern poking through
layer 47: more ceiling bits showing and the first floors
layer 46: visibly connected cavern with apparent central divider
layer 45: passages visible going through divider, worst grid artifacts
layer 44: chamber underneath divider visible, buggy isolated area
layer 43: floor of chamber underneath divider
layer 42: layer bottom, any passages off edge can admit critters
I got it placing a series of open layers locally now, so it seems everything is set up properly from the world down to the level of the tiles in play. Now I just need to flesh out those maps a bit and get the critters living there to feel some real progress. List updated.
Scamps fell asleep on my shoulder like a very tired parrot today.
The mission is ongoing. Today I got the critter populations set up and linked to local information, so that fish and vermin generation, as well as larger critter generation, will work out properly, for example. There are still a few things to go related to that, but it's mostly done, and it's also the information that's used to place the local tiles used during play, so I'm almost ready to get those generated as well. Once I've got dwarves actually digging into large underground features, I'll be able to make the reveal changes I mentioned before and get critter attacks tested out and so on.
I'm getting more used to Scamps and the new workflow, which includes periodic attacks and toppled equipment. Up to five varied layers are placed at the intermediate level. It'll need to handle local realizations next.
The birthday present arrived early it seems, so I'm marking yesterday and today off as month-end project days, and I'll do a few extra DF days in a few weeks. I should be back at work tomorrow.
The framework for world-level underground layers is up, and I have world generation placing a preliminary set of them (it's currently doing it in a pretty pervasive way, but you'll most likely be able to tone that down from the generation parameters). Next I need to handle the mid-level and local realizations. The current infrastructure for local map features should (mostly) survive, so many of the problems of integrating the new layers with the game are already handled, and things like wildlife wandering in from the edges can just be adapted from the current outside wilderness populations (since the underground layers store them the same way).
Some people asked what I meant by "creature interactions" last time. I meant anything the current outside and inside wilderness populations are used for -- hunting, things for wandering dwarves to bump into, more concerted attacks on the fortress (which are currently scheduled but don't often work due to the nature of the features -- you might remember them from 2D), and other intruders (you might also remember this sort of thing from 2D). It's unclear to what extent the more civilized underground dwellers will remain in their populations or how much they'll be elevated into entity status. If they have items they'll probably need to be pulled up entirely to make things work smoothly, so that wouldn't fit in the same framework.
Before that I'll just be working on some map generation. I also think I'll be able to update discovery/revealing of the local underground so that it depends more on where your dwarves have actually been, instead of revealing everything. Active LOS around every dwarf isn't feasible, but it can push the frontier off through the connected areas when a dwarf is vaguely nearby, anyway, so that there can be enormous connected (adventure-explorable) caverns without having them pre-revealed just because you have some dwarves tinkering around far, far above. I'm sure there will be some issues, but that's normal. This doesn't mean everything will be connected... I guess that might as well be up to world generation, anyway.
Underground Month began quietly with a thinkering day, but I'm pretty satisfied now that everything will work out properly. First up is the framework for world-spanning underground layers with large populations, so that creature interactions can be maintained throughout the life of a fortress.
The OpenGL-update/SDL version has been updated to 40d11 in the related thread. The keypress doubling problem should be resolved. The next update will probably be at the beginning of April. For now I'm working on the month-end project, as usual.
The OpenGL-update/SDL version has been updated to 40d10 in the related thread. There are some keypress doubling problems that can be mitigated by following the advice in the first post. We've got a handle on them, pretty much. Please let us know about any other difficulties you experience. The plan is still to move over to this code for the next major release, so it will behoooove you to try it out now so we can get things fixed. If you've been having FPS trouble in the regular version, this version may very well help you, especially if you have FPS trouble even on the title screen.
After a brief period of the doctor walking up to our injured dwarf, looking at himself and deciding that nothing was wrong, the medical staff were further educated. Then the doctor went off and grabbed the wooden splint and properly fastened it on the patient's right lower arm. The dwarf left the hospital and mined out a passage with the pick in his left hand.
Next up is 40d10. There's quite a bit left to do with health care, but the correct treatment today means that much of the rest should flow by pretty quickly. I might still get a chance to work with it a bit in the next few days. Either way, the underground's still up for April.
The doctors now plan out our dwarf's care in detail, but lacking the tools they need, we still find them prescribing nothing more than bed rest. Hopefully I can get a positive outcome for tomorrow, as I'm looking at 40d10 the day after that.
He's now surrounded by many skilled medical professionals. They still aren't all that useful, but just their presence must be encouraging for him. Well, I guess that's not true either.
The broken-armed dwarf understood that he needed to run off to the hospital zone properly, but care never came, because I'm still working on that. Poor little buddy.
As you might want to gather and treat the wounded without the benefit of tables or beds (due to resource constraints or otherwise), I went with an activity zone for the hospital. I've added a few options to activity zone placement to make that a little easier (they can overlap now, you can flow them out like rooms, and delete a single zone regardless of overlaps). This'll also be a good test for using zones for things like dynamic workshops (way) later if things go that direction, as hospital zones will need to manage several buildings. It might also be useful for some military applications for this release.
In any case, next up are the specific goings-on at the hospital. Unfortunately for the critters, this means repeated applications of (1) create a hospital zone and staff settings (2) debug-chop a dwarf (3) see how it goes. List updated.
Health care list updated. I'm going to work on that list for five days, then I'm going to do 40d10 work for a few days before the month-end project begins. I'll be starting the underground changes at the beginning of April regardless of the status of the other portions.
Still trucking along with wound/scar descriptions. I'll probably change gears to healthcare after the 14th.
Finished off various aspects of style/voice/chin/body sentences. Wound descriptions should be up next. At first they'll be in the description paragraph, and with the healthcare improvements (which is the nextish major topic), there will also be a more practical view for them.
After quite a long time, I've finally finished my night reading, Three Kingdoms. It's been very inspirational for the army work to come after this release is out.
The second Bay 12 meetup is set for May 9th in Seattle. Zach and I will both be there. The details are at the forum in this thread. Please post there if you are planning to drop by!
Tissue styling seems to be working properly, and I got some preliminary information up in the paragraphs. I just need to clean that up a bit and do wound descriptions and then this section will be sorted out. I haven't decided if I'm also going to jump into bearing/mannerisms a bit or if I'm going to wait on that. It'll depend on the timing, since I want to be able to move on within a few days. List updated.
I made it a good way through tissue styling today. There's an entity component in the raws and a creature component, so as long as a creature has a group of tissues tagged in a way that is recognized by a civilization, it can interact with that society's style definitions. For example, if dwarves were administering some conquered humans, human children born there would adopt beards if they identify with the dwarven civilization as their primary group (something which will probably be a little too strict now, as there's currently no notion of tribute or conquering that isn't fairly total). Dwarven children kidnapped and incorporated into goblin society might sh... shave. We'll see how it plays out when I finish it off. The primary motive now is to get beard descriptions showing up in the appearance paragraphs.
I've got some sentences now and have worked out the last real problems with the raws that I could find. The two major remaining tasks are getting styles up and making descriptions for wounds.
Worked through bugs and problems with appearance modifiers today. After the crashes were fixed, various index misalignments caused certain asymmetries to arise. The problems were too serious for the text to cope -- it was expecting symmetry, so it just wouldn't display the worst problems (I've been working from numeric outputs, and I don't yet have the screenshots some people wanted). There was a dwarf with one eye bugged out and one eye sunken in with colorless irises and one quadrant worth of teeth ten times as long as the others and the nose shrunken down to nothing. He was also a little shorter than the average dwarf, and beardless, because it grew out those teeth instead.
By the time I have the first paragraphs up, there will still need to be some balancing, but the monstrosities may be gone. I've got it properly ordering the features by what's "noticeable" or important based on a numeric weighting in the raws coupled with the deviation of the feature from the average value, and I think that'll work out pretty well. I'm going to try to crunch down the paragraphs a bit, but it won't work that well in the case where multiple appearance modifiers overlap between body parts/tissues but don't completely align (this happens with hair so far).
Mostly going through healthcare stuff (including some book summaries that SirHoneyBadger was nice enough to prepare for us) today with Zach to see what should be in this time around, looking around various places to get ideas for fleshing out descriptions a bit, and trying to systematize that. I'll be starting the descriptions tomorrow, which will be pretty exciting since I haven't gotten a chance to see what all of the work on appearance has come to yet. The first batch of dwarves will likely be trainwreck fugly. List updated.
The computer issues are pretty much sorted out now, and I was able to get a little work in as well in the end. In particular it'll set the appearance modifier values properly for older creatures now, instead of starting them, for instance, hairless. Until I get to tissue styling or tissue trimming (the latter of which is definitely going in this time), older units will enter the map quite hairy, as if they've been growing hair all their lives without paying attention to it. List updated.
So, I got up this morning, and when I pressed the button that turns the computer on, it didn't turn the computer on. The power supply did some weird whirrish things after I fiddled with it for a while, but it's dead and I couldn't replace it since it's pretty firmly wired into everything. I'm now 14 hours, a new computer, 4 linux installs, 3 XP installs, 2 bluescreens, 3 shopping trips and a bad product return into the journey. I didn't lose any data, but the old hard drive won't easily fit into the new computer -- now the old drive is in a USB enclosure. I'm almost back together, unless this XP bluescreens again. I think that was due to disagreements with the linux partitions but I'm not really sure. I have a linux partition again, but it's not fully updated yet so we'll see if it holds up. I've almost scrounged all of the necessary drivers to keep XP going on the new system (I had to download them from linux, as my XP disk is pre-SP1 and doesn't recognize the internet until I get it some drivers... which my new computer failed to come with... almost bad product return #2, but I was tired of trips by then and was pretty sure I could take care of it).
No doubt there are a million better ways to go about this, but I can't sit still when my computer dies.
Three more items, the largest being the bite/punch/kick/wrestle distinction in the natural attack skills/raws. I was considering adding custom combat skills for natural attacks and items at this time, but when I was going through it became pretty clear that it's premature, so I just took down notes for it instead for a later release. I'll either continue with the last few skill/atts items or start in on descriptions tomorrow.
There were several minor skill-related alterations, but the main changes were the addition of a situational awareness skill that works with some of the new attributes to handle attack-from-behind/charge surprise/ambush detection rolls, and the use throughout of the melee combat skill for other misc. combat rolls that used to be handled by total skill (a "level" placeholder that's now scrapped entirely). The melee combat skill (and archery) are also currently used to handle weapon "skill synergies" -- that system will likely be changed to something with more branching structure during the Combat Arc, but this will do for now. There's a little more to do with skills/atts tomorrow. List updated.
We came up with some default attribute values for the main civilized creatures, and I changed the att/skill display in adventure mode and dwarf mode to account for all the new atts, and added a bit of grouping to the list so you won't be overwhelmed by things like conversation skills. I'll be working on skills tomorrow as well. List updated.
I fixed the brain problem. As expected, it was flipping all of the relations so that the brain was around the skull, and the lungs and heart surrounded the ribs like ribs, that sort of thing. Various work with combat text and balancing the numbers out. Handled attribute increases over time with practice for combat and a few other places. Made skills get rusty over time (this was done for attributes previously) and eventually degrade. It's a very slow process, so it's not something to worry about unless you completely reassign a dwarf for a number of years or change their weapon for a long while, etc. List updated (checked off a few in the skills/atts section).
Six days of month-end project starting tomorrow, then back to the dwarves, branching into descriptions, more with skills/atts, and health care.
The combat/hunting/sparring reports work. You can view adv mode style messages by creature and category (comb/hunt/spar) now and all of the announcements have associated dates. Those that have associated locations are zoomable from the announcement/report screens. I also messed around with the text some more... a work in progress. It's also highlighted some strange issues, like with the brain pretending to be outside and all that. List updated.
He he, "probably tomorrow" indeed. Today turned into forum day and I got a headache. Tomorrow will be a better day.
Updated another 40 or so announcements -- this time it was all of the ones that cause pausing and recentering. The only pause-recenter that isn't handled is the full invasion, since that full page announcement occurs under a different system. So it's not quite to the point where you could turn off all of the pausing messages, say, and run the game without interruption, but it's much closer. I also finished up the first pass on combat text. Once I get notices up (probably tomorrow), I'll finish that as well.
I've updated the 40 or so peripheral combat messages to the new system and set up the information that is sent in to main strike message creator.
Combat messages in dwarf mode will default to notices -- this means that they aren't displayed at the bottom, but instead give you a little letter notice on the left bar of the screen according to the type of combat message (combat/sparring/hunting). You'll then be able to view the stored combat messages, separated into combat/hunting/sparring lists for each dwarf.
Remaining bits are the strike message's actual text, setting up announcement options by type (appears in a pause box? pauses-recenters? logged with the notices or in the main queue? etc.), setting up the notice screen, and updating the main announcement screen. For any updated announcement that can possibly have associated coordinates, you'll be able to recenter the view from the main announcement screen and from the notices. I won't be updating many of the announcements this time around, but I'll try to catch the ones that I've heard the most about (mineral popups, job cancellations, death announcements, etc.). Announcements that I don't hit will work as usual.
I've been looking over the announcement situation in general, and I think I'll be able to do dwarf mode combat reports as well as put in some announcement zooming/filtering/etc. without much trouble, though there will likely be some restrictions at first (in that I might not update all 500+ announcement types with individual tags at this time). I've put in some of the infrastructure for that, and I've also gotten started on the combat text.
Knocked off three more of the misc. items on the wound list. I'm almost ready to get started on the text and combat reports, which are the last major thing to do with wounds. List updated.
I got back halfway through today, but I haven't slept the last two nights so I'm a little fried. Tomorrow there will be a proper update.
I'm starting that small break I mentioned in the report this month, with the days removed from the month-end pool. Dev updates will resume in a few days. List updated.
Today was compound fractures as well as fractured layers being knocked inward to damage soft inner portions. So a bone in the arm for example could break through the skin if the arm is struck by even a blunt weapon, and impacts can also force jagged skull edges into the brain or a broken rib into the heart or a lung (generally, the broken layers can cross body part boundaries according to the wound's path over body part relationships). List updated.
I handled the liquid/gas/powder tissue creatures running into trouble today. Leaks of inner layers, solidification/condensation damage, wacking away parts of them, that sort of thing. List updated.
Slow day programming-wise, a few wound things checked off (numbered BP stuff and updating melting snow and other 'spatter').
Lots of correspondence/foruming today, but I managed to get through creature/caste specific immunities to poisons and developing resistance over multiple exposures if an effect is flagged to allow this. I also handled some hanging issues with multiple contacts over the course of one illness and a few other things. The list has been updated, with venom's sub-items categorized in three way: ones that are done, the one part I'm definitely putting off (other diseases), and some other items that I'm delaying for now. Those will go in or out depending on how the release date is looking, as it has been a while and doesn't need to be a long long while, even though it will be a long while yet.
I started off with secretion of a powder/liquid material covering today. All sorts of contaminant transfer today as well, so things like secreted contact poisons can be set up now, and the slime or gunk can be moved around by wrestling or strikes (items or body parts). Secretion could be easily adapted for things like sweating and so on later (just by adding something like an exertion tag to the secretion), but I'm passing that up for now. I also set up the poison scheduling. There are a few more things on the list (updated) to consider, and then I'll be done with poison for this release.
Today was material breath weapons. For now, there can be forward puffs of gas/vapor/dust of any material, as well as clouds surrounding and liquid/solid glob projectiles. This can be extended to things like cones and so on later. I tested out these and the poison effects by making the berserk test dwarf breathe dwarven blood vapor that was linked to an inhaled poison effect that caused immediate pain throughout the body. He wasn't immune to it himself and ended up passing out before I did. The list of remaining items, updated.
I finished up the effects today and allowed for inhalation of gaseous materials. I'll need to do material breath attacks to take advantage of that. The list of remaining items, updated.
I did half of the effects I listed before. The main ones remaining are the ones that actually create specific wounds (bruises, blisters, necrosis, etc.). I have all of the tissue/bp selection done, I just need to put the wounds themselves in place. Then I need to do the scheduling to get it all advancing properly and allow healing after the effects have run their course (assuming it's something like a bruise or blister that will heal up). The list of remaining items, updated (no green today).
Continuing along with poison. I've got venoms injecting again and all of the active syndrome information is being set up properly inside the creatures. Now it just needs to hit the creature with all of the individual effects according to schedule/atts/size/etc., as set by the raws. The list of remaining items, updated.
I decided to take a detour into poison land today. The framework should be easily extended to other material effects and to some non-material effects on creatures as well later on (for instance, alcohol effects or ointments that do whatever, as well as auras around creatures, 'gaze attacks', etc etc), but for now, I'm going to go with contact/injected/inhaled poisons that cause syndromes in affected classes of creatures involving pain, swelling, oozing wounds, bruising, blisters, numbness, paralysis, fever, bleeding, coughing/vomiting blood, nausea, vomiting, unconsciousness, necrosis, impaired vision, drowsiness and dizziness as a starter set, with some possible extensions as they arise. If it makes sense, you'll be able to move those effects around from the initial site (for say contact or injection) to body parts by category/function (so you could have something cause headaches, for example, or make the gums bleed... one of the wikipedia snakes had that... not my fault). The list of remaining items, updated (nothing greened out today).
Another month begun in violence... I updated various wrestling, fixed up tissue ordering conventions a bit and updated fireball damage. As the new usual, the list of remaining items has been updated to reflect progress.
Associated stuck-ins to particular wounds and used that to modify how they behave with twists, bleeding and pull-outs. Twisting won't just keep amplifying bleeding to bizarre levels as it does in the currently released version and leaving items stuck in will actually slow the bleeding somewhat, so just sitting there and twisting should no longer be preferable. I also finished up the subterranean creature definitions and about half of the remaining standard creatures. The mission continues next month.
I handled some spatter display issues today, put back in all the blood spatter on items and equipment that was in before (aside from stuck-in twist stuff, which needs additional work). I also updated the tissue-related code in the hidden areas, and updated trampling/rain/cleaning vs. spatter. I ended up spending more time than I intended today preparing some long forum posts, but I suppose that's inevitable with the list I put up, which I've updated to reflect today's changes, as well as the backlog of questions which I let build up on the other FotF thread.
From the forum: "Although I like to watch the Countdown decrease, it has ceased to be a motivator for me and has even been a hindrance at times. Instead, here is the list of remaining items for the next release. I'll be coloring/modifying this post as work progresses. The list is more or less fixed, though there might be minor changes, omissions and additions as I go along." I'll still be posting my work day reports here in the dev log, of course.
828. About half of the subterranean creatures and much of creature_standard remains, but all of the other creatures have been updated.
832. Updated about a third of the creatures, including all of the gibbons. I'm not doing anything super accurate with color/patterns for them this time around, as that would take too long.
I did partial fractures today and did some more with healing breaks and scarring, did some changes to permanent deformation wounds (bends/dents on metal creatures for example), handled how heavy bruising and miscellaneous damage causes function loss, did permanent bleeding for wounds like heart bifurcation/throat removal, and refined the contents under pressure characteristics for guts; the ability to grab the exposed guts, attack or sever the exposed guts, the guts getting dirty when they drag on the ground and other such things all came basically for free. There are some dev items on that I guess... you can't yet strangle people with the exposed guts, though I suppose that's now within reach (grabbing the guts now would only open up a pinching attack I think, which would be the least of your adversary's problems). All very disgusting. In any case, that was all grouped under a misc. damage item, so 836. Pfft. 32 left to the wound/fighting count.
837. Added nails (this will be most apparent once I get the raws back in for things like the big cats, as it'll need to get at the claw material to do damage properly), redefined natural attacks to allow multiple parts (mainly for claws and biting) though it's limited in some ways, went back and started in on the necessary updates for wrestling.
842. Tendon and ligament damage is done, respect the material sent in for them. You can also get severed motor and sensory nerves in your extremities on occasion when the muscle is (generally severely) damaged. Motor damage is like the current nerve damage in that it stops the part from being used, while sensory damage stops the part from feeling pain but causes problems with rolls (I suppose later it can make movement difficult and you'll also have to watch out for wounds just from bumping into things, or whatever's appropriate). Also did material spatter spreading (the new system has an amount so things like mud can't just spread out forever), and various other material spatter updates (still about half of those to go).
845. Continuing on with the material spatter update loose-ends, and some stuff with which organs are hit by strikes. I suspect it'll be around this slow down through finishing wounds off, but there are only 41 total remaining there, so it's not so bad.
849. The main thing today was updating the old blood/slime/vomit/mud/snow system with a material spatter system, so that small amounts of any material can be placed in a map square (it can handle whatever state, but practically that'll mean liquids or powder coating/splatters). Moving away from the old map flags to a dynamically allocated system more like frozen liquids and constructions allowed me some more wiggle room, so it can track the precise amounts up to a point, at which an item is created. This could also allow snow/mud depth effects later on, although that might be merged with items/flows depending on how it works out. It's not a question for the next version in any case.
The current break down is 45 more on wounds, 18 on descriptions, 6 on some skill/att stuff, 65 on venom/poison, 30 on health care concerns, 165 for map features, 260 for entity positions, 195 for squads, and 65 for random crap and tests, in that order most likely.
852. Finished up the inheritence I was working on yesterday. Right now it'll do dominant-recessive stuff with the color variables, and it can also do that with the appearance variables or do averaging. It's pretty simple at this point, but what's there now could be used to, say, breed your dogs toward certain colors and body dimensions, as well as whatever facial features there end up being (though the colors and patterns would be limited to whatever is in the raws). Of course, the process might involve a lot of culls as there aren't a lot of controls on which animals breed.
I also handled the starting "wounds" for skeletons and zombies, wound pain (so the original goal which initiated the wound/layer rewrite, getting rid of phantom limb pain and other annoying permanent pain situations, has been met), sever stub wounds, and some edge cases concerning parts melting off leaving other parts that need to become severed limbs and so on.
856. Took a break from wounds today to add "genetic" inheritence for appearance variables. The day ended with some kinks left to be worked out, though I've come a long way from where I was this morning with nobody having kids and all the gods dying of old age.
861. Bumped into another one of those tough numbers -- this time it was updating temperature effects. Individual tissue layers on body parts can sluff off or boil now, after suffering melting/boiling effects while remaining intact for a short time. They can also be damaged by heat/cold/burning as before. I still have to handle temperature effects for liquid and gaseous layers -- the only vanilla DF cases are things like magma-men, which wouldn't currently take damage because they have fixed temperatures. I'll either put that off or move them away from fixed temperatures to just enough homeothermy that they can stand being in caves but not out by glaciers, or something. The more relevant applications might be mods involving water creatures that could freeze or boil during regular game conditions. So, not sure if I'll get to that this time around.
Another update, this time for Mac as well: Windows, Linux, Mac, and Discussion Thread
On the Mac, for the moment you'll have to open up a terminal and run "sh df" from the folder.
863. Simple healing and scars. The countdown had a bit of slack built in there apparently, as it wasn't all that difficult. The continuing effort tomorrow.
895. Some more unit information for corpses, handled wound coloration and added it to init file, handled some morale and 'used to tragedy' effects, siege ammo push-through update, attacks passing through material-less layers, handled knocking back units, handled stuckins.
I've got the Mac up and running, so I should be able to put up the updated Mac version along with the others next time.
904. I went through and did the first pass on the projectile revision. I think the new agility is being counted too much, as the skill-free test dwarf didn't have trouble hitting me ten times in a row, but I'll have that sorted out when I run the numbers. I also did wounds from falling and the transfer of wound and appearance data to corpses and severed parts. The wound transfer should be key to sorting out issues like exactly where a hydra's heads are and whether or not the skulls have been removed and so on.
Here's an update version (40d8) that fixes a problem with the close button vs. the escape menu. Windows, Linux, and Discussion Thread
926. Today was the day to go through all 300 occurrences of the old body part hitpoints and update, categorize or remove them. The boiling gold blood came out as gold dust first, because I forgot to transfer the states between creature morphs properly, but after that it came out as a cloud of gold gas properly. I'll have to do it again once I've updated temperature damage.
An unexpectedly irritating snowstorm stranded me up at my parents' place during my mom's birthday party. I did manage to get a half day in -- blood raws with states for the blood (liquid/gas/powder etc.), bleeding information, artery strikes, blood on the ground, fixing up some of the bp names, but I had to leave just before I tested the dwarf with the boiling gold blood. Now I'm starting my next day (after shoveling the very long (couple hundred feet or more?) driveway out in the woods...), so I should be able to test that shortly. 936.
Here's another update version (40d7). Windows, Linux, and Discussion Thread
Wrote up organ strikes, but it keeps crashing when I hit the spleen. Should be easy enough to sort out.
- Timer/frame counting fix.
- Alphabet key support for non-US keyboards.
942. Messed around with the denting/breaks a bit, then did bruises and some cosmetic info for the later descriptions. Made sure it skipped tissue layers that hadn't grown in yet and set up some indexing information for that. Allowed sufficiently narrow attacks to pass through previous wounds on occasion. Added sinew materials for tendons and ligaments. Organ strikes should be up next, and then bleeding. Also a 40d7 coming up.
Dwarf Fortress started October 2002, this log was started around the same time as the "back to the dwarf game" thread.