I have a problem whose source I cannot figure out. In the C&C Ancient module, I have recently created a couple of new extensions, each containing several new pre-set scenarios. On just a few of these, there is an odd problem. When the game is opened, the player has a free choice of sides( observer, Player 1 or Player 2) as they should. But once they’ve chosen a side, as Player 1 or Player 2, anyone who synchronizes to them is shunted directly into the game without a choice of sides. Furthermore, they are not assigned any existing side at all, so the synching player has no access to the Retire button either.
Only a very few of the scenarios have this problem, but they were all saved in the same method, so I can’t figure out what is different about them that could be the source of the problem. If someone would like to take a look at this, just get the current module version of C&C Ancients and Expansion 3. Try opening the Baetis River scenario and having someone synchronize to you.
Does this really happen with any player who tries to synchronize? It sounds like the synching player has been assigned to a side, perhaps a side that doesn’t exist anymore. You should try changing your password to something new before synching.
The module only has two sides (Player 1 and Player 2) and has never had any others (aside from observer, of course). This problem was initially reported to me by other players. They had tried changing their password, and it made no difference. And it didn’t matter which player opened the game first, the synching player was the one affected.
I created a new ID and password on a different computer to test this myself. It made no difference on which computer (each using a unique ID and password) I opened the game with or which was synchronizing (I did it both ways), the same effect occurred.
It occurred to me I hadn’t tried it with multiple players, so I went on the server and found a couple people to try it out. It makes no difference who opens the game, every player that synchronizes to them is not given a choice of sides as described above. The player who opens the game sees a normal choice of sides and sees themselves assigned the proper side they chose. No one else is allowed to choose a side thereafter. And I had each player try opening the game, it acted the same regardless of who opened the game or who was doing the synching.
What puzzles me is that this only happened to a few games out of the 40 or so new scenarios I set up for the two new extensions. I’m not aware of anything I did differently to them. I was able to set up the two games similarly afflicted in Expansion 2 from scratch, and when I saved them and replaced the original saved game files with these in the extension, they worked fine. But given that I use the same methods to set up and save each game, I can’t figure out what is causing this problem in just a few of the scenario pre-sets.
I’ll bet that you forgot to hit the ‘Retire’ button when creating those saved game files. In that case, the user you were running as when you created the saved game will have reserved one of the player slots.
Or at least suggest that player assignments be cleared.
Is there any situation where you would want to have the player
assignment fixed in a setup file?
I can’t think of one, but maybe I’m not being imaginative enough.
Would you want that feature for a game in which one player sets up,
say, a defensive setup and then uses that to start up the game? Or
would that be best served with the saved game mechanism?
(For example, I’m thinking about games like GMT’s Downtown, where
one player sets up hidden and visible defenses. The visible
information is then available to the second player for attack
planning. Downtown covers the air strikes against North Vietnam in
the 1960s and 1970s).
No, this is definitely not the problem. If that were the case, then one of the player slots would not show up as available to the player who opens the game. The player opening the game is shown all player side options as open for choosing (he can sign in as player 1, player 2 or an observer). Also, if I open the game with the user ID and password I used when setting up the game, it doesn’t log me in as a particular side as it would if this were the case. My base user ID is also given a choice of all sides, same as anyone else.
I found the bug. It only happens if the setup was created by a user playing as who did not hit the Retire button before saving. There will be a fix in v3.1, but you can work around by re-creating the setup file and retiring the observer side.
No, it must be optional, though a reminder would be good.
Sure can. I did a module a little while back for a multi-player game that could have up to 13 different sides playing, depending on the scenario. For example, scenario 1 might be 2 player for sides A and B, Scenario 2 might be 3 player with sides B, C and D and Scenario 10 might be 8 player for sides A, B, C, F, G, I, J and K.
Various considerations made it important to use Player sides, but I did not want a list of 13 sides to choose from in scenario 2, for example, where there are only 3 valid options. So for Scenario 2, I joined the game as each of the other 10 side in turn, using a different password for each, then saved the game so that only the 3 remaining sides are available to be chosen.
This was a step I took in creating the saved games, but I it’s possible that I forgot to do this with a few of them. I didn’t think this was the case, because I thought that if I had forgotten to retire when I opened the game later it would automatically log me in as an observer.
Thanks for taking the time to figure this out; I really appreciate it.
Just so you know, I was still troubled by the fact that I wasn’t getting logged in as an observer with my base password. When I change my password for some purpose, I use one that’s twice as long as my base one, so I can tell them apart. So I checked and saw that my password was the short one, but I re-typed it anyway just in case. Sure enough, I was now logged into the saved game in question as an observer. I had apparently mistyped my base password earlier and couldn’t tell, not being able to see the digits anymore. If I didn’t have fumbling fingers, I would have figured this out much more easily.
Long as I’m on this topic, let me ask a question. Before v3 of Vassal, if you saved a game as an observer, opening the game later did not log you automatically in as an observer. It’s only since then that I’ve had to go to the extra step of retiring as an observer. Was there a specific purpose to this change or could it go back to the way it worked previously?