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Messages - Kyzrati

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4326
Support / Missing your download email?
« on: May 18, 2015, 04:32:27 AM »
Email me at gridsagegames@gmail.com and I'll take care of it ASAP.

But first, to potentially solve the problem even more quickly consider the following possibilities:

Check your spam filter. In many cases these emails are filtered as spam and never reached your inbox!

Make sure you're checking the right email. Many of us use a number of email accounts these days--be sure you're checking the one attached to the system used to make the payment.

4327
Support / Problems running the game?
« on: May 18, 2015, 04:28:51 AM »
Some potential issues to be aware of, and how to solve them:

Game does not start, instead Windows says there are missing DLLs like "msvcp100.dll".

Install the MSVC++ 2010 Redistributable Package (x86) from Microsoft and the game should start normally. Alternatively, if you don't want to download or install the redistributable you can download "msvcp100.dll" and "msvcr100.dll" from the web and put them in your "windows/system32" directory.

Game does not start, or crashes almost immediately.

Possibility #1: Cogmind must have write access to its directory. In Windows, make sure the game is run with admin rights, otherwise it may crash. This is required to create config files and save your progress.

Possibility #2: Cogmind cannot be run from a directory path that contains non-English characters. On some systems this may include your desktop! Make sure the entire path to the game folder itself contains only numbers, punctuation, and English letters. Putting the game in a place like C:\Games\Cogmind\ would be fine. Somewhere like C:\遊戲\Cogmind is not.

Game starts, but won't start in fullscreen or the resolution is otherwise incorrect / doesn't match the screen space. (Especially common on 4K monitors.)

This occurs under Windows 8 and 10 due to its default handling of fullscreen software-rendered programs. This will be resolved in a future version (an MS-recommended fix on Cogmind's end apparently didn't work when introduced in Alpha 2). Before then you can use this easy workaround. (After changing this setting, it's recommended that you delete your /user/cogmind.cfg file before restarting the game so it can better auto-calculate its proper grid size.)

The game didn't save my progress or configuration options!

Mostly likely it's because it was not run with admin rights, which is required to save files including both your configuration and saved game. Make sure to run it with admin rights, and note that adding COGMIND to your Program Files directory will prevent it from having admin rights by default.

If that's not it, your anti-virus software probably quarantined/sandboxed Cogmind and thereby prevents it from creating or saving files in its own subdirectories. When this happens the game will appear to function normally, but be unable to create or save any data! Make sure Cogmind is not restricted by AV programs! If Cogmind didn't start up in fullscreen mode the first time it was run, it is probably being sandboxed.

The game is sluggish.

Cogmind is light on system requirements, but if you have a really old CPU some mid/late-game areas might get slower. In this case, you can increase your FPS by switching to windowed mode, using the smallest/default map size (50x50), and using a smaller font size. The smallest window supported is 1272x720 (Tiles) or 800x600 (ASCII), which are based on size 12 and size 10 fonts, respectively.

If those don't work for you, a more general options is to cap the FPS. Cogmind is set to run at 60 FPS by default, but you can change this manually by opening /user/cogmind.cfg and changing "fpsCap=60" to some other lower number, like 40. This will reduce the amount of CPU time allocated to rendering and leave more for the action.

I'm having trouble getting the game working on my Mac.

This thread will get you up and running.

I use Wine on Linux and cannot install the MSVC redistributable.

Cogmind works fine on Linux under Wine, but I've heard* that some are unable to install the required redistributable. In this case use the alternative method described in the first issue above (put the files in the windows/system32" directory created by Wine). (*This was years ago, so it may no longer be true/required--I think more recent distributions include these files be default.)

4328
Support / How to Install Cogmind
« on: May 18, 2015, 04:27:13 AM »
Windows:
  • Download the game from your personal download link sent to you via email. The download is a single zip file which contains the entire game.
  • Uncompress the zip file and put its contents in a folder on your hard drive. (Note: Avoid putting it in Program Files, where programs do not have write access by default.)
  • Run COGMIND.exe (the file inside with the cool-looking icon), making sure it has admin privileges in order to save files. If it runs, great! Otherwise you probably need step 4:
  • If you get a missing DLL error, you need to update Windows by installing the MSVC++ 2010 Redistributable Package (x86) from Microsoft.
If you have any questions about zip files or the redistributable, feel free to ask and I'll update these instructions with more detail if necessary.

Mac: There are multiple available solutions, some with step-by-step instructions: Wineskin and Winebottler. Also a quick video tutorial for installing Cogmind via Wineskin. Requires macOS Mohave 10.14 or earlier!

Linux: Cogmind works fine in Wine, though I don't believe we have any step-by-step instructions for that one yet. Cogmind can also be purchased, installed, and run through Valve's Steam Play.

4329
Ideas / Suggestion Guidelines
« on: May 18, 2015, 04:25:05 AM »
You can suggest pretty much anything. After all they're just suggestions and can at least lead to some interesting discussion. Make a new thread for your new suggestions! (Don't tack new suggestions onto existing unrelated threads.)

Keep in mind that there are already clear design goals for Cogmind, as well as more to the game than is publicly available knowledge, all of which must be taken into account before implementing changes or new features.

That said, I take all suggestions under consideration in shaping Cogmind's development. Some of the game's important features and content were the result of either direct suggestions or comments that sparked my imagination or indirectly influenced the game in some other way.

Some existing/ongoing aggregate suggestion threads:



Some suggestion topics are inevitable dead ends so I'll give my responses here to head those off. I'm the kind of dev who likes to say "yes, we will totally do that," but here is the page where I have no choice but to express a lot of Nope ::)

Larger Fonts. While Cogmind does come with very large fonts, some players want to play on laptops where physical screen size (not resolution) can be a limiting factor depending on player vision, and those large fonts are inaccessible because there is no zooming like you might find in other games (due to the terminal-based nature of the interface). Cogmind's mechanics, and by extension the UI, were designed for a grid no smaller than 80x60, thus physical screen size plays a determining role here. Following a comprehensive analysis and multiple community discussions during alpha development, Cogmind will not be redesigned to suit smaller screens. Given the situation, what can be done to alleviate the issue is either insufficient or requires a complete redesign. (Note: To avoid misunderstandings I put together a dedicated page where prospective players can preview what Cogmind looks like on their screen of choice.)

Mobile/Tablet Support. Games for these platforms are best designed from the bottom up to work in that environment, while Cogmind focuses on what works best for PCs. Many design elements, everything from the interface to the mechanics, would be quite different if implementing the same game concept for that kind of platform.

Multiplayer. Not happening. The closest we'll get is high score competitions, seed-based tournaments, and similar events. Feel free to organize these on your own / amongst yourselves, by the way. There will be official tournaments at various points, but as long as there's interest why not have more?!

Modding. I have no doubt there is modding interest, but Cogmind isn't really that kind of game, at least not now. It may be possible one day, but even then it will be somewhat limited because the game was not created to be highly moddable. If you're into modding, take a look at my other project X@COM, which will eventually make a glorious return based on advances made during Cogmind development, while also including a major focus on user-created mods and even total conversions.

(This topic will likely be updated in the future with more information.)

4330
General & Off-Topic / Re: Introduce Yourself!
« on: May 18, 2015, 04:21:13 AM »
Me first:

I've been making games my whole life, starting with a lot of paper-based games as a kid, and eventually moving on to developing simple computer games in the late 90s. I played a lot of video games in the 90s as a teen, so the transition to making my own was a natural one for someone inclined to take on creative projects of all kinds. My biggest regret is that I never joined communities or sought outside help, continuing to develop in isolation for more than a decade. Progress was slow and there was much wasted time and avoidable roadblocks.

I found the roguelike community in 2011 and instantly fell in love with the genre. Despite having been a computer enthusiast since the age of BBSs and MUDs, I simply wasn't fortunate enough to encounter roguelikes :(. Once I did find them, I played quite a few and spent the most time with DCSS, then pretty quickly decided I needed to make my own. So I decided to make an adaptation of one of my favorite games of all time, X-COM: UFO Defense. After two years of strong development, that project was put on hiatus, and the rest of the story continues with our first question below :D

- How did you learn about Cogmind?
Obviously my answer here will differ from your own ;).

Cogmind was born on a trip to Thailand in February 2012. I was brainstorming ideas for that year's 7DRL game jam, browsing "games you wish existed" type threads on random forums in our hotel lobby in Phuket. A one-sentence post (I forget where) about playing a main character that "builds itself from pieces of enemies" caught my attention. That day cruising around the islands on a boat, I imagined applying that idea to a game about robots, and my brother and I proceeded to think of all the cool things we could do to expand on that. The idea seemed really promising. I spent any down time over the next few days figuring out the basic mechanics, decided it could work, then made the game for 7DRL a few weeks later.

Over the next couple months I released a dozen updates, mostly to fix a few bugs, make some interface enhancements, and run a tournament for the hundreds of frequent players (mostly over on Bay 12, very much "the birthplace of Cogmind's player community"). Despite its humble origins and short dev cycle the game was pretty enjoyable, but at the time I was right in the middle of BattleScape development for my main hobby project, X@COM. So Cogmind was put to rest and there were no plans to return to it.

Then I reached a turning point in life.

My son was born (ironically around the same time Cogmind 7DRL was coded), and within a year my free time began dwindling significantly. There was only one way to continue developing games at any reasonable pace: make it a full-time job. I needed a promising "small" project that I could finish in a reasonable amount of time, something with a theoretical chance of financial success... Cogmind's 7DRL incarnation could be considered a prototype for a potentially successful game, so I decided to run with it, and here we are :D

- What other roguelikes do you enjoy?
I've spent the most time playing DCSS (Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup), mostly back around 0.7~0.9. So much content, replayability, and viable play styles in that game... and all so mechanically tight.

Another favorite gem, relatively new, is TGGW (The Ground Gives Way). It's a super condensed and streamlined roguelike experience, but despite the way that sounds, there is a ton of depth and content. Interestingly, aside from the fact that it's a fantasy game, among all the roguelikes out there TGGW shares the greatest amount of "gameplay spirit" with Cogmind in that there are a ton of items to find, and your abilities are completely determined by what items you choose to carry with you.

For me, a lot of roguelikes now fall into the category of games I spend more time reading about than actually playing, because I simply don't have much time to play games anymore.

- What are your other favorite games?
The original X-COM: UFO Defense, as mentioned earlier, ranks somewhere around the top (for the record, I didn't like the new one at all).

Somewhat related to Cogmind, I've been a life-long BattleTech/MechWarrior fan. It's a completely different genre, but there are a few obvious influences seen in Cogmind. I've played pretty much every BT/MW game ever, and for the past couple years the one game I've spent a reasonable amount of time playing is MechWarrior Online.

I know a game designer really should play a wide range of games, but my lack of free time has caused my list of "games to play" to grow out of control until I realized there's little reason to maintain it since there's no hope of whittling it down. Honestly, most modern games completely fail to interest me anyway. I do occasionally pick up a popular game and try it for a couple hours just to see what people are talking about. I play MWO mostly out of nostalgia, and as a way to relax. The rest of my "play time" is devoted to game development!

- What do you do for fun when you're not playing games?
I have many hobbies, but not much time to devote to them anymore. My favorite activity which I always have time for since it overlaps with my responsibilities as as dad is to take my son out on bike rides to various parks and playgrounds. I'm sure things will continue to evolve as he gets older!

As for a more "standardized list" of stuff I do, it's mostly traveling, photography, graphic design, writing/blogging, reading, and cooking.

4331
General & Off-Topic / Introduce Yourself!
« on: May 18, 2015, 04:10:37 AM »
Use this thread to say hello to your fellow Cogminds!

Let us know a little about yourself, in as many or few words as you like. (And/or pictures!)

You could also answer some of these questions:
-How did you learn about Cogmind?
-What other roguelikes do you enjoy?
-What are your other favorite games?
-What do you do for fun when you're not playing games?

4332
General & Off-Topic / Forum Feedback
« on: May 18, 2015, 04:06:12 AM »
The Grid Sage Forums are brand new, so things might be rough around the edges.

If you have suggestions or questions about the forum itself, whether about functionality, appearance, or whatever, this is the place to discuss it!

Regarding the overall appearance, note you can switch your theme to the SMF default or an alternative dark theme I loaded as well ("insidious").

4333
Announcements / Alpha Access LAUNCHED!
« on: May 18, 2015, 04:03:07 AM »
The first public version of Cogmind is available for anyone interested in early Alpha Access! Check out the alpha launch trailer!

Details here.

This board will be used to announce all future releases (but you'll also be able to get that information through various other means as listed here.

4334
General Discussion / Where to Get Info on Cogmind
« on: May 18, 2015, 04:00:22 AM »
There are numerous sources of information about Cogmind and releases, so I've collected them here to explain what you may find at each.

Primary
  • Website: The main portal for general information about the game. The FAQ there also answers a lot of common questions, including both a roadmap and a list of ways you can help at the bottom.
  • Roadmap: The FAQ contains a visual roadmap that indicates what features are probably coming up soon. It doesn't contain all the little day-to-day stuff, instead focusing on the bigger picture.
  • Twitter: My "official" Twitter account, where I'll occasionally report behind the scenes progress and show off new features in advance. Releases are also announced there.
  • Announcements Board: New releases and major news will be announced via new posts on this board. Activate board e-mail notifications if you'd like to know about those when they're posted.
  • Steam: Pretty much all news and updates are mirrored to Steam as well.
  • Discord: I hang out on this chat server where we have Cogmind-related channels and lots of experienced players available for daily discussion.
  • Unofficial Wiki: If you don't mind spoiling your game, there's a player-maintained wiki (currently somewhat old).
  • Cog-Minder: Aoemica has built an amazing site full of tools and its own Cogmind wiki, which is updated frequently based on the latest game data, and includes full lists of basically everything such as parts, robots, and even a combat simulator.
  • Dev blog: I don't post general updates here, but the blog might of interest to anyone looking for more in-depth articles about a range of development topics.
  • Newsletter: Sign up for the newsletter to be notified via email whenever there is a major release.
Secondary
There are a number of other communities where I post information about Cogmind. If you're already a member you may find them a convenient way to stay up to date and/or meet other players outside this forum:
Other
  • Trailer: Our alpha trailer is a quick and entertaining overview of the game in general, for when you want to introduce the game to someone else ;D
Note that from within the game you can activate the "News/Updates" option, which simply asks www.gridsagegames.com for the latest version number of Cogmind on startup, and the little '?' in the bottom right corner will light up if there is a newer version available.

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