I made some important changes to the campaign after the last session, including some game combat balancing. (Please also note that there is a module update this time around too.) Some of the changes were due to things that I noticed during play that my players did not, which indicates how “minor” they were. I have also been looking at the second module again, with respect to players entry, irrespective of their “past”. i.e. A new player, a player with a saved game, or a player with an exported Main PC. Once this section of the code is finalized, which it is reasonably close to now, I will then be able to start concentrating on the plot. Time will tell how this pans out, but it is something I would like to finish if possible. After all, most of the the areas are completed, so I would like to make use of them. Anyway, here is what has been fixed:-
The List of Fixes
1) CUTSCENE CONVERSATIONS: While playing our latest session, we came across a conversation (Blood Guard on cave exit) that did not use a cutscene, which would have worked better if it had. I believe the reason this conversation did not was because it allowed a player to switch between PCs to offer other conversation choices subject to PC abilities. However, this ability to do so is not worth the loss of the dramatic effect - in my opinion. Therefore, this conversation, as well as some others (e.g. The hermit and some others) now have been returned to cutscene types. My intention is to add PC ability checks back to these conversations via my own scripting, like I have for many other cutscene conversations. Hopefully, this will be catered for in the next release. In the meanwhile, I will make such conversations cutscene (if I find any that are not) and check their content for ability checks as I go along.
2) CHAMELEON PUZZLE TRAP REPORT: I noticed that Orechin’s Chameleon Puzzle indicated that a trap may be present even when the party were given the impression it had not. There was a problem in the code, which has now been fixed, meaning the correct response should now be given for activating a Chameleon Stone which does not have a trap. i.e. “It may or may not have, but none detected” kind of response.
3) INVENTORY FEEDBACK: There was a rare occasion when a left clicking on an inventory item no longer gave feedback. This was due to a new variable that tried to prevent irrelevant feedback during loading a new game. The variable appeared to not reset when it should, so I have now added a backup at the time of calling the item description itself. This should squash the bug once and for all.
4) READBOOK PAGE TURNS: After making Readable Books MP compatible, there was a slight error remaining where a player could be left with the incorrect “page turn” arrows (forward or backward) subject to whether they started the book action or not. This has now been fixed.
5) MONTY BUGS: There were a couple of bugs related to the Monty quests. There was effectively a “double or nothing” XP award bug for the following reasons:- (a) Sometimes the Talanthians would attempt to attack and kill Monty during a battle with the PCs. If Monty died, then the XP was zero. (b) However, there was also a bug in Monty’s conversation (if he survived and the heroes rescued him) where it was possible to receive the completion XP twice. Thankfully, my own players only received it once on the night, but I noticed the duplication on testing further and fixed it now. I still have not totally stopped the Talanthians from attacking Monty if combat is initiated, and may leave it as a consequence. However, my ideal goal is to keep him available to talk to after combat and so may have this “fixed” by the next release.
6) MISSING TREASURE: This problem will only affect players who have ever run the v2.12 version of the campaign, which is probably only myself. Back in v2.12, I managed to introduce a memory leak, which was quickly squashed. It caused unwanted placeable objects to be dropped in areas that contained companions. At the time, I wrongly assumed the bad code had affected only those companions the players had interacted with. Last session proved this not to be the case, but also affected the companions the players had not yet met. Therefore, while I had removed the bad placeables related to some areas, we had been left with two areas that were still affected. This in turn affected those two areas in other ways. One aspect was to cause treasure allocation to be stopped due to this memory leak. These remaining areas have now been “cleaned” of the unwanted placeables (in our game), meaning the code will now fire correctly. (NB: Players should search objects again.) As an update, I have now also removed this “placeable drop” code from happening n the first place, as I do not think it is needed any more. I will keep an eye on this to see if I do need to reinstate it (in its fixed format) for any reason.
7) GEMS NOT AUTO-ALLOCATING BAG: There was an instance when collecting gems from fallen NPCs were not auto-allocating into the gem bag carried by a PC. I believe this was related to also finding “gold coins” on the same NPC, which in turn was previously undergoing the same “consolidation” checks that other stackable items go through, which caused the code to stop before the gems could be correctly allocated. The check to consolidate now avoids this “gold coin” item, which runs its own dedicated script instead. Please can players let me know if this continues to be a problem.
8) DEATH GUI AND RESPAWNS: In checking the code, I noticed that the game may respond incorrectly if a player died and respawned using essences, in that dead companions no longer came back when they should do if the player has the correct VOL feat. The check in the code was wrong, and has now been fixed to only stop revival checks for a host PC. All other checks for companions or other Main PCs of other players should now continue to be checked.
9) PLAYER ENTER AREA BUG: This problem was only likely to happen in a MP game, as the erroneous code was checking “players” entering an area. Occasionally, (subject to timing), a player may have received the “MISSING ITEMS” GUI, which when checked proved to be wrong. This is because the code was checking the item on the entering creature rather than the Main PC , which in a MP game (where timing makes a difference) could return the wrong player. This has now been “fixed”, but I will keep an eye on this in case I have missed something else. At worst, it is easily worked around, because the player can simply hit “escape” after closing the GUI (which removes the black screen) and continue play as normal. Please report if it happens to you.
10) JOURNAL ENTRY (TOKENS): I have updated a function to prevent a double call to the journal token update function. Now, rather than update the journal (first call) and then update any potential tokens (second call), the updated function now simply passes the data once, updating journal and/or tokens in the same call as required. I did this because I (as the DM on the last session) did not receive the same update as the players and considered this double call to the same function may have been responsible. It’s a minor issue (as the DM is updated in the next journal update anyway), but I applied this update to help alleviate the issue as a possibility.
11) ASSOCIATE NEW AREA FOLLOW: I have added associates to the automatic follow the controlled PC when entering a new area. For some reason, any summoned creatures (and the like), did not continue following their master after an area transition. This has now been rectified.
12) STORE STOCK (SPELL BOOKS): Store are supposed to have “blank” spell books available to purchase in the event the PC “loses” their spell book somehow. In much the same way clerics can “recover” or “acquire” a new prayer book from a sanctuary, the wizard needs to be able to “recover” their own source of knowledge. Certain stores now have these available for just such an instance. The latest campaign release (v2.41) also has some “fix” code to accommodate earlier module releases.
13) ENCOUNTER TRIGGER MOVED (MODULE ONLY): There was a trigger that the players managed to “miss” on their first arrival, which I have now repositioned for future module. The new position should make it impossible to miss.
14) OTHER FIXES: (i) There were one or two other minor TYPO fixes (Taloy about Aubrey). (ii) Fixed code to ensure any abandoned companions would either properly “run away” and leave … as well as no longer giving a player the warning GUI about abandoned companions if they had asked the companion to leave anyway. (iii) I adjusted the code that balances an encounter, especially where a player has a large party. (iv) Prevented the cave guard repeat asking for permit after being shown once.
Catch up with the heroes in our session here (at the bottom of the blog): https://worldofalthea.blogspot.com/2019/01/the-adventure-continues-19-enclave-of.html
Download v2.41 here: https://neverwintervault.org/project/nwn2/module/scroll