Turbo Sliders future

Discussion related to Turbo Sliders and beta version feedback.

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Ande
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Turbo Sliders future

Post by Ande » Sun Aug 17, 2008 3:31 pm

Hello to everyone - I am still alive! :)

I am sorry I have not been around lately - if for about two years can be called "lately". There have just been so many other things in life and TS has always been just a hobby for me. In addition to that, the game was pretty much "finished", containing most of the features I originally wanted it to have.

Anyway, lots of time has passed and I think that it might be time to do something for TS again. I know everyone has 100 "small" features they would like to add, but the emphasis would be just to upgrade libraries, make a better Linux version and maybe fix some graphics issues as techonolgy has changed since 2003.

But there is one big thing that might be coming. I know there have been lots of freeware rumors and after considering it, I think that the easiest thing to do would be just to remove track restrictions from the demo version. So, effectively, demo version would be almost like freeware with a nag screen in the end. It might be possible for server admins to restrict races for registered users or some other benefits for registering, but anyway, the demo version would not be very different from the full version.

Then, I am considering one technical change I would like to hear comments about. I would like to make a change in the game that might reduce network warping a bit, but it would require me to slightly adjust game engine rules, thus causing old records not to be completely comparable. The difference would probably not be much, but anyway, it would be there. How many of you lap wankers would commit suicide if all your precious old lap records are invalidated? Maybe there could be a permanent hall of honor for all the old records :).

Another thing I would like to fix somehow is how graphics engine works in the game. It uses SDL, which hasn't evolved much during the last 5 years. It still can't do fast alpha blending which pisses me off. I would like to be able to use OpenGL or something like that, but the required work would be big and probably would cause many new problems so I don't know if I can do that.

Anyway, I hope to be able to make a new version in coming months, which will at least have reduced demo version restrictions. As usual, I can't promise anything but at the moment, I feel I can do it :).

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Re: Turbo Sliders future

Post by xzeal » Sun Aug 17, 2008 3:47 pm

Ande wrote: Anyway, lots of time has passed and I think that it might be time to do something for TS again. I know everyone has 100 "small" features they would like to add, but the emphasis would be just to upgrade libraries, make a better Linux version and maybe fix some graphics issues as techonolgy has changed since 2003.
I don't care I still use technology from 2003 :).
Ande wrote:But there is one big thing that might be coming. I know there have been lots of freeware rumors and after considering it, I think that the easiest thing to do would be just to remove track restrictions from the demo version. So, effectively, demo version would be almost like freeware with a nag screen in the end. It might be possible for server admins to restrict races for registered users or some other benefits for registering, but anyway, the demo version would not be very different from the full version.
Finally we'll get people who I can actually beat in racing. I'm all for it.
Ande wrote:How many of you lap wankers would commit suicide if all your precious old lap records are invalidated? .
That would mean the lap wankers have something to do again. Isn't that a good thing?
Anyway, I hope to be able to make a new version in coming months, which will at least have reduced demo version restrictions. As usual, I can't promise anything but at the moment, I feel I can do it :).
"in coming months"

right...

Experience has taught me what that means :(.

But I'll ignore that for now. Ande is back!!!

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Post by Mike Nike » Sun Aug 17, 2008 3:58 pm

Welcome back, man! :)
Demo version close to fullversion: super! :)
Laprecords more or less "die" for less warps! You have my OK/green light! :)
Change to opengl etc. - with it, probably videocapturing might be easier to do in future?

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Post by dede » Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:22 pm

How about releasing a Mac OS version too?
About invalidating old lap records, I guess it won't be a big problem (lapwanking is even more dead than the game right now). Maybe you can also try to make the hash calculation different and harder to cheat (remember the problem we had with the old ranking). And for videos too.
Anyway, to me the most important thing is to have the full version unlocked for everybody in the shortest possible time (I'm really pissed of playing punaball only).

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Post by mikko » Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:30 pm

dede wrote:Anyway, to me the most important thing is to have the full version unlocked for everybody in the shortest possible time.
That's all. Nothing else really matters.

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Post by Kobradog » Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:37 pm

Ande wrote:How many of you lap wankers would commit suicide if all your precious old lap records are invalidated? Maybe there could be a permanent hall of honor for all the old records.
Hall of Wankers? Tsihihi. Down with the old records!

Hello.

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Post by Tijny » Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:42 pm

dede wrote:Maybe you can also try to make the hash calculation different and harder to cheat (remember the problem we had with the old ranking). And for videos too.
You're being paranoid. The "problem" was already fixed in 1.08 (or so). Lap records haven't been cheated since early 2006 (unless you consider bouncing a cheat) and furthermore, changing the hash algorithm isn't going to help any. Anyway, I don't care so much about old lap records (or new ones for that matter) so you have my green light too.
Anyway, to me the most important thing is to have the full version unlocked for everybody in the shortest possible time (I'm really pissed of playing punaball only).
I agree. If need be, maybe you could also release a new version one step at a time, first with a new demo mode, then with the technical change you were talking about, etc.

edit: hi Koby!

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Post by Hengari » Sun Aug 17, 2008 5:17 pm

Excellent!

As I have heard some players asking about, a Mac OS X version would be great and now when OS X runs on Intel it should be easier.

And welcome "back".
oldschool slider <3 | Hengari @ Quakenet/IRCnet
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Post by Limp-pu » Sun Aug 17, 2008 5:51 pm

Records doesn't matter.

Full-demo sounds super. That's the only thing that matters to me. The game is perfect as it is now, lacking only players.

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Post by Anddru » Sun Aug 17, 2008 6:45 pm

Sounds f*** great Ande :D

About lap-records, who cares? :)

When you say libary-stuff, does that include that you'll add some tiles (like ice and bouncy-tiles) and maybe more tracks (like the pu_tracks), or what?

Anyway, if you wanna fix some of the 100 things, just say so, and I'll tryna make a list ;D
In my new website you can find my tracks and cars!
http://druerne.org/ts

Hope you will enjoy!

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Post by Xerez » Sun Aug 17, 2008 7:17 pm

Yeah, welcome back :)

Sounds great. Already excited :D

I have pretty much the same question as Anddru. By updating libraries, does that include some new tiles?

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Post by Ande » Sun Aug 17, 2008 7:50 pm

Nice to see so many old-timers reply so fast :). Here are some answers to questions:

By updating libraries I mean technical stuff, the third party DLLs the game is using (SDL, SDL_image, SDL_gfx, OpenAL etc.). I don't think I will make any new tiles since I didn't do the old ones either and if I got someone to actually make new tiles, I would also need to make new tracks, AI lines etc.

I am also aware of the fact that especially if you run the game in full-screen mode, it is much more laggy than it should. The fixed 50 fps does not quite work well enough always and the already mentioned SDL problems have always been there. But fixing this is the hardest thing to do so it may not be in the next version. Maybe I will make the game to start in windowed mode by default.

I still don't own a Mac I don't have enough reasons to buy one. That is the main reason it is unlikely a Mac version is coming any time soon. There are already too many computers here but if someone wants to send me one more, I will give it a try of course :).

And about fixing warps. I don't know how much it would actually help. It can't fix everything since as long as there is any network lag (as there always is), there will be warps. If you want to know the technical details, I can tell that the game uses 32-bit floats internally for position, speed, angle etc. But when server sends positions to clients, they are truncated to 16-bit approximations to save network bandwidth. This can sometimes cause more warps because the client then has a slightly different version of the situation. One fix would then be to alter the 32-bit values so that their 16-bit versions are exactly the same. But like I said, I don't really know if this helps at all, but it may be worth trying.

By the way, are there any known crash bugs (Illegal instruction, Assertion failed or anything like that) in the game at the moment?

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Post by dede » Sun Aug 17, 2008 8:35 pm

TurboSliders works perfectly for me, and the online game is just awesome compared to other similar games (MiniRacingOnline for example).
In my opinion the best thing would be having TurboSliders 1.08 with "full featured" demo (as you said, with the possibility to exclude demo players from servers). No changes needed to the game (obviously some new features can be implemented in the future if you have time, but implementing them now would mean waiting extra months, and that would be terrible - at least for me).
I don't recall any game bug right now. Maybe the only thing which can be fixed is the editor (so that we don't have to place again custom tiles in the trk after saving it).

About changing the game engine, maybe in a second version? First let's get back some players, then improve the game if you get some time. Otherwise, at least we'll have enough players to play the game forever :D

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Post by Xerez » Sun Aug 17, 2008 8:36 pm

By updating libraries I mean technical stuff, the third party DLLs the game is using (SDL, SDL_image, SDL_gfx, OpenAL etc.). I don't think I will make any new tiles since I didn't do the old ones either and if I got someone to actually make new tiles, I would also need to make new tracks, AI lines etc.
Ahh.. That's a shame :) Wouldn't it be possible to make an updated tiles-file with ice, black-turbo-thing, bounce-objects, starting grid with more angles than just horizontal and vertical etc. and make it the default tiles-file in the editor? And then just publish the new version with the old and the updated file..

I guess that wouldn't ruin any tracks or anything. Just a thought though :)

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Post by Jarno » Mon Aug 18, 2008 6:42 am

Xerez wrote: Ahh.. That's a shame :) Wouldn't it be possible to make an updated tiles-file with ice, black-turbo-thing, bounce-objects, starting grid with more angles than just horizontal and vertical etc. and make it the default tiles-file in the editor? And then just publish the new version with the old and the updated file..

I guess that wouldn't ruin any tracks or anything. Just a thought though :)
Problem is that all of those are made from different people and quality could be a lot better. And second problem is that they are too big to put on default tiles like that :) So it would require lots of changing and fixing.

By starting-grid you mean checkpoint starting grid and not the tile? Because tile you can rotate in every angles :)

Ps. Nice ande. maybe i start racing again if new version comes out :) I'm on little brake right now ;)
Spinnering on limits...

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Post by Punatiainen » Mon Aug 18, 2008 7:18 am

Wellcome back Ande :)

I also feel that game is good as it is now, just lacking the players, so the demo-->full conversion should be at highest priority.

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Post by olio » Mon Aug 18, 2008 5:05 pm

Punatiainen wrote:I also feel that game is good as it is now, just lacking the players, so the demo-->full conversion should be at highest priority.
Another vote for this. Absolutely, first more players, then do the fixes&things you want :wink:

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Post by Mouse » Mon Aug 18, 2008 8:33 pm

Andeeeeeeeeeee, good to see you. :)

I'm all for what you have proposed. What about some more stability/compatibility for Vista? I know some players have had problems (me included, I can only play on window mode). I think most if not all players are able to play with Vista after some messing around with settings, but it could be something to look at down the road.
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Post by Xarthok » Thu Aug 21, 2008 12:05 am

This is great news, can't wait to see full dedicated xbumpz and infiltration servers :D *dances*
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Post by Jazzyclub » Sat Aug 23, 2008 4:15 pm

omg its realy happened? great to see you alive!!

about the game, no bugs for me...the only thing is the track editor "the trackmakers know the problem when saving"

im one of "make first the demo version", then "always if you have time" making new implementation or improve the speed of the code client/network side...

about new tiles, in these 4 years a lot of tiles are made from users...just use them as default (only previous a poll to select what tile is good or not)


after all the game work great like it is now...need only more players :)

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Post by Anddru » Sun Aug 24, 2008 9:54 am

Jazzyclub wrote:about new tiles, in these 4 years a lot of tiles are made from users...just use them as default (only previous a poll to select what tile is good or not)
I agree about that :) And maybe also some tracks (maybe some of the new mods)?
In my new website you can find my tracks and cars!
http://druerne.org/ts

Hope you will enjoy!

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Post by The Dude » Sun Aug 24, 2008 12:35 pm

I'd like to comment on some of the server aspects of these changes.
Ande wrote:It might be possible for server admins to restrict races for registered users or some other benefits for registering, but anyway, the demo version would not be very different from the full version.
I can't see that a server owner would restrict access because that would only make players to go to other server with no restrictions. Additional benefits is the way to go or some client side limitation that has been discussed before. One idea I've hear is to have anonymous player names like "player123" for demo players but then again, it would require more work for Ande.

All in all, the most important thing is to have more players and by removing track limitation, we will get it. I am all for it :)

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Post by dede » Sun Aug 24, 2008 2:11 pm

The Dude wrote:I can't see that a server owner would restrict access because that would only make players to go to other server with no restrictions.
I believe that most of the servers will remain open to everybody. But, I agree to keep the distinction between full version and demo. I can imagine that some puna pro's wouldn't like to have their own server joined by loads of newbies.
Anyway, the most important thing would be not to loose this distinction for the future: it will be possible to assign extra features for registering the full version.
The Dude wrote:One idea I've hear is to have anonymous player names like "player123" for demo players
I have to admit that I considered this in the past. After all I think that the current profile system sucks right now: it's possible to drive with multiple nicks, and even drive with other player nicks (hash is visible to everybody). This might be really a mess for web-based rankings. It would be much better having unique accounts with the possibility of changing nickname (under the same account). Check how MiniRacingOnline(.com) works, for example.
Jazzyclub wrote:about new tiles, in these 4 years a lot of tiles are made from users...just use them as default
I don't agree including them to the "default" tileset. But adding them to the "data" folder would make things a lot easier (no need to download those tiles together with tracks).

About other tracks, I find it totally unuseful: we have so many tracks that it would be too hard selecting them. They are downloadable separately from this website, so it's better to keep the installation pack small.

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Post by dede » Sun Aug 24, 2008 10:28 pm

Is there a limit for spectators? I guess so, but what's that?

And as additional feature, it should be possible to identify spectators (e.g. names could be Spectator1, Spectator2, etc) and list them through a /whospectators command. Possibility to ban Spectators, also.
Imagine having 20 newbie spectators spamming while a serious tournament is going on.
Otherwise implement a command to set spectators off without restarting the game (kind of /SpectatorsAllowed <0|1>).

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Post by The Dude » Tue Aug 26, 2008 4:54 pm

I agree with Dede that Spectators could be a problem. Of various reasons you want spectators but if someone start to misbehave then you quickly realize that it is easier to kick an server administrator then a Spectator (that is impossible).

To continue on the demo vs full player discussion. On the server side I think ranking would be a feature for full version players only. For it to work properly, we must have some way of protecting nicknames as Dede was saying. This is very important for us server owners who wants to take the game further with statistics, ranking etc.

Edit: Changed Statistics to Ranking, cause that was what I ment :p
Last edited by The Dude on Tue Aug 26, 2008 7:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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