If you go down to the woods today…

… be wary of bugs under rocks.

The last couple of days have been “interesting” (especially in terms of getting any sleep here). The complex and scary stuff in Battleground Europe’s 1.29 patch has worked as you’d expect it to. But as any coder ought to expect, the little things went awry.

Battleground Europe 1.29 patched

Strewth what a long day. We’d gotten every thing scripted for publish the patch but a lot of it went well beyond the realms of what I’ve been able to automate to date, and there are so many external dependencies on the live cluster that I had to babysit each individual change. The meaty portion of the work was ensuring a smooth transition to UTF-8. It didn’t help that the reversed-map campaign is going well, so we couldn’t cheat and call it a reset.

Performance is up, eye candy is improved, the new default keymaps take a little adapting to but Bloo made really good calls on some of the keys and lots of it is combining functions to single keys so you have to remember less keys overall, and flying/driving with the keyboard is a doozy (god bless SgtSpoon) and WideScreen now works like it should.

Readme below:

WireTap now uses UTF-8

During today’s 1.29 patch one of the changes occuring is a transition from Latin1 (ISO-8859-1) encoding of names to UTF-8. This affects town names with umlats (Köln) and German and French brigade names (1. Fallschirmjäger 1.Gruppe, 13ème Demi-Brigade de Légion Etrangère).

Admit when you have no clue.


Microsoft described the next release through the following five focus areas: riding the next-generation platform wave, inspiring developer delight, powering breakthrough departmental applications, enabling emerging trends such as cloud computing, and democratizing application life-cycle management (ALM).

Well, my delight is certainly inspired :)

Personally, someone deserves kudos for taking the Visual Studio 2010 brief (“make it cool”) and extemporizing a whole paragraph from it.

Pirates ahoy

My fleet is now 63 ships; mostly freighters. My Mk3 traders have been getting good and I had reached 4Mcr again. Time for some more building, but as I’d discover… the X3:TC universe is anything but at rest…

X3 Storyline vs Sandbox

Terran Conflict is, by and large, a sandbox space game; the slogan is “Fight, Trade, Build, Think“. If you go the fight route, ultimately you will be building up a fleet of carriers, corvettes, destroyers, etc, and taking on the “AGI” (Automated General Intelligence) and Pirate threats, and anyone else you deem to be a threat – not merely cruising around in a hyper-souped fighter.

I doubt there’s storyline to cover that, and last night I embarked on a soujourn into the X3:TC storyline again. It turned out to be the same storyline I would have started with if I hadn’t chosen the “Humble Trader” route.

X3:TC and on

I’ve been ill the last week and so I’ve not done much of anything. Last night I decided to spend a couple of hours gaming, maybe some Fallout 3. But when I got to the desktop, the X3 icon was just more appealing.

Oh, and did I mention, X2: The Threat and X3: Reunion were both available for Linux? (I think TC uses cutting edge Direct X stuff so no Linux port, at least not yet)

If your BEGM broke…

Oops :) (I added some extra XML attributes to one of the files).

I’ve fixed it but you’ll need to kill your pre-existing “config.xml” which it appears you have to do manually.

Start > Run > “%USERPROFILE%\Local Settings\Application Data\BEGameMonitor\”

(including quotes)

Delete config.xml, restart BEGM.

Tactful Advertising

Off in the background the TV entertains the cat. But then I heard a new GM Ad: 

America’s biggest automobile company and its dealers want to help you get the loan you need.

It’s General Motor’s Financing That Fits.

Offering access to millions of dollars …

I guess they booked the ad before they started wanting bailout money?

Just saying – it can’t sound right to the average Joe :)

X3TC: A little upgrade goes a long way


Did I mention that it has awesome, kick-ass background music?

I played for a couple of hours last night before the big storm arrived and I upgraded my ship’s weapons: up until now it has really been for show (it seems like the AI pirates will scan your ship and are more inclined to attack a target with no weapons). Now it’s for kicking ass.