Hey all, let’s start off with the Multiplayer Strike Force first this week – as they beaver on in the background while we continue to update the 41 IWBUMS public beta with fun, games and polish.
Those who have followed MP dev will know that the all-new system that allows for characters to move smoothly due to latency and missed packets can sometimes lead to remote characters lagging behind their true position. They might just be caught in never-ending catch-up, or perhaps failed to receive the command to climb in a window, or similar, in a timely fashion.
As such, for when all other catch-up procedures have failed, Yuri has written some code so that characters considered too far behind will now fade out and then fade back into their true new position. This shouldn’t happen very often on decent connections with decent pings, however, but is to be considered as a safety net for unexpected slowdown, lag and high pings.
In the following video, Yuri is simulating a 500 ping connection with high packet loss: a very unstable and long path to the server. As most multiplayer gamers will recognize this is far from an optimal ping for online gaming.
Players should rarely see anything this bad, but it serves to illustrate how the system works in terms of keeping the player in approximately the correct position.
There still needs to be some tuning done as to how often this happens, to perfectly balance between keeping players in the correct position, and not teleporting around all the time. As we stated above, this should happen infrequently on decent connections, leaving character movement smooth and immersive.
Andrei in the meantime has been debugging and fixing some zombie behaviour, in particular their problems climbing in and out of windows on MP due to some state issues.
Through this link here you’ll find the longer video that the above has been cut through, also showing other fixes that have gone into the mainframe over the past week. This included a bug in which one hit on a zombie would kill every single zombie on the server – which seemed a little OP to us.
41.48 is all about polishing some aspects of Build 41 combat, and beyond, that we know are a bit wonky. Currently they are as follows:
We’ve always had problems with the targeting of zeds in crowded situations when there are simultaneously zombies on the floor that need to be stomped/battered, and also incoming walking zeds.
In recent patches we’ve tightened the window a little on this, so it’s better than it was – but at the cost of forbidding expertly timed stomps and downward swings from our more experienced players.
We’ve always hesitated to grant players a direct ‘downward attack’ key, but in 41.48 (from a moment of inspiration from RJ ‘Romain’ Dron) we will have a new keybind that provides for this in a more ambient fashion.
If you want to keep on playing with targets auto-selected you can, but holding Left Alt while you attack will always force a ground attack.
This means our more ‘pro’ players will get some more freedom in their zombie battering (they can even turn off all ground attacks unless Left Alt is held in a new option, if they want) without overcomplicating matters for the larger proportion of PZ’s playerbase.
Spears have always been the roughest weapons in the game – as they were slightly OP, and also the Spear Charge move was… well it was pretty broken?
41.48 makes a Spear Charge a viable combat move, while also makes spears a little more fragile if you’re overusing them.
We’re going to try to release 41.48 to the IWBUMS public beta next week, if the bug fix gods continue to smile upon us. Thanks all!
This week’s bloody patrol from Pasteur Arepo. A changelist of all IWBUMS patches since the 41 beta was released can be found here. A general list of stuff added to PZ, and vids of features being worked on, is kept here – so you don’t have to plough through endless dev blogs for info. The Centralized Block of Italicised Text would like to direct your attention to the PZ Wiki should you feel like editing or amending something, and the PZ Mailing List that can send you update notifications once builds get released. We also live on Twitter right here! Our Discord is open for chat and hijinks too!