Text formatting causes chatter bug

Since dice buttons have a standard message blank for showing the results, it should be possible to format the text. (In fact it looks like that’s one of the specific examples for the feature in the manual.)

However, whenever I try adding formatting to a dice button, all buttons (modified or not) start having a problem where you hit the button, and nothing appears in the chatter, you hit it a second time, and both results appear (properly formatted, on separate lines). This isn’t a once-only thing; from that point on the module only reports the results every other time. This happens with either HTML formatting or the ‘quick color’ shortcuts.

One case where it didn’t happen was when the module was defaulted to not allowing HTML support in the logs, at which point, the formatting appears verbatim in the log (as expected), and the buttons continue working as expected. Turning on HTML support then caused the ‘paired reporting’ behavior. Using one of the shortcuts (without turning on HTML support) also immediately causes the problem.

Looking further, all chatter messages suffering from this problem once it starts, including actually entering chat text.

I’m suspecting that this is a (nearly) ‘just me’ thing at that rate. I’m on Windows 7, and don’t know of any modules already using the text format options to test someone’s else’s work.

Presume you are using vassal v3.4.11 because this was a chronic problem when HTML chatter was first released. A fix was quickly released but I had one or two occurrences after that. After some advice I replaced use of < and > in text output with the HTML equivalents < and > … this last bit was the common cause of having text disappear completely. Also, I may have found one or two unpaired HTML commands eg a missing


Brian suggested using a termination command like to recover, so I put this in the report field of a toolbar button but I have never had to use it.

I was on 3.4.10 until I noticed 3.4.11 had come out yesterday (no changes with the update).

Putting in a doesn’t help…

Keep in mind here that my problem is if one button has formatting, then every source of text gets the pairing/delay that I described, even if that button is never used, so I don’t think it’s any of the other problems you cite.

Does this still occur with 3.5.8?

Finally remembered to check this. Yes, in 3.5.8, as soon as I set “Enable HTML support in Chat Log” to “Always” I see the the paired reporting problem.

So far as I’m aware, every time this problem has appeared, it’s been caused by still having literal < symbols somewhere in your report text. Replace them all with &lt; (the equivalent HTML entity), and also replace any literal > symbols with &gt;, and the problem should go away. In particular, Dice Roller results used to include these symbols by default (newer versions of VASSAL now use the HTML entities, instead, but if you started creating the module in an older version, switching to a newer version won’t magically correct the problem).

If you’re willing to share the module, I can very quickly fix this with a quick search-and-replace on the build file.