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Solving the tile loading issues (mabey)

Post by jbox1 » 01 Aug 2018, 10:13

Now, I am not very certain about a lot of the facts, and I am making a number of assumptions here, so stay with me if I am wrong. Thanks!

Now, the new way of having tiles be loaded and unloaded was certainly a step in the right direction I believe, and I would say this system could still work with some modification. I do have some propositions actually on how these could be solved.

Currently, as far as I am aware, moving into unloaded terrain will then load in those tiles and they become a part of the world. Then moving away from tiles would unload them and they would no longer be part of the world. The real problem is that tiles would load way to frequently. Moving no more than a few units will cause lag spikes, causing the game to hang.

The solution would, first off, to asynchronously load tiles, in the background, thus not affecting actual game-play. Similarly, using multiple CPU cores may be a solution (although I am incompetent of the technical side of things, I'd dare say Mechanic Miner could use multi-core support for some functions, such as body physics). Also including thresholds for loading and unloading tiles would help keep gameplay more consistent, instead of immediately loading tiles as soon as they were in range, and unloading them when they are not. For example, a player could come within 10 units of a tile, the tile then loads, and a lag spike may occur. BUT will remain loaded until the player is 20 units away, saving some lag as far as reloading the same tiles, for players passing through the same area.

Of course, some of these suggestions may be impossible due to technical limitations, and as I said, I am rather incompetent about areas of computer architecture, but I hope they might be valid steps in the right direction to helping reduce lag and make the game more playable. Extra points to Team Mechanic Miner though, for tackling bugs and performance issues now, instead of waiting until the final release when it's too late anyway.

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Re: Solving the tile loading issues (mabey)

Post by Thinzy » 01 Aug 2018, 12:41

I don't know about that, maybe if they find a way to load half of the tile rather than the whole thing loaded in the background.
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Re: Solving the tile loading issues (mabey)

Post by MM_Needo » 01 Aug 2018, 16:12

I'm not directly working with this, so I can't really tell you the exact technical details of what is going on with the loading/unloading. So first of all, the way it's currently working was never meant as the final solution, and the v.0.1.3 optimization (which has now been removed) was only one tiny step in the right direction. Without going in to details (because I can't), I believe that the next step will be some sort of threading of the loading/unloading -which is also part of your suggestion.

The general performance of Mechanic Miner has for a long time been in a rather bad spot, and I think I'm not promising to much by telling you that improving the performance is currently our top priority. Improving/fixing the loading/unloading of tiles is actually just a part of this problem - there's a lot of things that could be improved related to the performance - one example is how the game calculates physics. Even though we want to do these performance improvement asap, and we know how to do it, it will still take a bit of time to do so.

I wish I could give you more solid and specific information, but that's really not my field. Hopefully I can trick one of the programmers into doing a Developer Log on the current state of performance in the not so distant future.
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