Ken's Voyages Around the Sun

Covering My Bases
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Bachelor Week, despite not turning out exactly as anticipated, did result in a remarkably productive time for reworking my online game in one significant way: base capture.

From the get-go, I had never thought about allowing each side to capture one another's land bases in the game, because all the historical scenarios are too short too allow it. However, players have been developing more and longer scenarios where it makes sense to permit such things to occur within the game.

They've been asking for this for some time, but let's see, how does one explain that it's "non-trivial" to them, not just SMOP (simple matter of programming)?

Anyway, my game consists of numerous databases and Perl scripts, almost all of which had to be touched in one way or another. Sometimes it meant just adding and tracking a field value; other times it meant major and significant code changes. All of it required a great deal of thought to implement and test.

For example, what should planes launched from a land base that's captured while they're aloft do? It's not just a matter of suddenly saying the base belongs to the other side, for one thing. The planes now have to know that they cannot land back on their home base, so I had to add code that would not only let them look for the next-closest base to their home, but ensure that the base could handle them (i.e., large bombers cannot land at a seaplane facility).

And what about allowing a base to be *re*captured? :-)

Anyway, if you care at all about this stuff, see the new Help page that covers all the game changes in detail. And realize how much code change had to happen to effect that.

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