Monday, October 21, 2013

Playtesting and Bug Squashing

My modding efforts for the past week have all been working towards my stated goal of getting the game in a more playable state. This was to try to get through as much of the game as I could in its current state. There are still a handful of things that need to be fixed before I can run through from start to finish, but that glue that links all the individual finished components shouldn't be far off.

So the weekend saw me spend a fair amount of time doing a playthrough from the very beginning and exploring as much as I could, noting down any issues along the way.  I'm focusing primarily on the gamebreaking issues, but noting the cosmetic ones as well for future attention. Then, sometimes you just pause for some reason and manage to catch a party member leaping at an Ogre and looking a little bit odd...

Flying goose strike!

The good news is that I managed to get through quite a lot of the mod before I had to stop.  There were, of course, things that I missed, but that's inevitable when you've got an adventure like The Shattered War. Some choices cut off some content, meaning you can't see everything in one playthrough. It also means there will have to be lots of testing before I can finally call it finished.

There were a bunch of little things that tripped me up along the way:
  • I was missing stages for couple of conversations - which unceremoniously dumps the player (and the person they're talking to) outside of the walkable area of the level.
  • I'd moved/renamed some resources/levels, which means they were inaccessible when referenced by name by some scripts/variable names.
  • The ability for supposedly mutually exclusive quest lines to be run simultaneously due to some bad logic.
  • I'd failed to set attach some scripts to plots - so when the player completed particular actions, the necessary consequences didn't occur. While this really puts a dampener on a playthrough, I've done this a few times now, so it's one of the first things I check (and subsequently solve a number of issues in one hit).
Smaller issues were things like:
  • Areas having very quiet ambient sound. To be honest, I'm not actually sure how I can fix some of this, because there's simply no way within the toolset to increase their volume. This is actually one of the most annoying issues, because the ambient sound really makes a huge difference to the overall atmosphere of the area. If anyone with DAO modding knowledge has any idea about this, I'd really love to hear from you.
  • Tweaks to companion approval scripts causing the approval for one of the companions to not work.  
  • Some recorded lines of dialogue were uncharacteristically louder or softer than they should have been. There was a nice conversation and then suddenly ONE OF THE CHARACTERS IS TALKING REALLY LOUDLY.
  • A large battle scene where one side simply refused to fight and simply stood there, oblivious to any combat around them.

On the whole, I've made some great progress, and should be able to make even more over the coming week.

No comments:

Post a Comment