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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsParkitect - business simulation
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JobLeonard
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« Reply #500 on: July 28, 2015, 01:45:49 AM »

Very Yann Tiersen
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deanr201
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« Reply #501 on: July 29, 2015, 12:29:48 AM »

Just a quick play around last night.
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deanr201
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« Reply #502 on: August 06, 2015, 02:11:08 AM »

Started a new park with the 40$ build!

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deanr201
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« Reply #503 on: August 06, 2015, 02:11:44 AM »

construction continues
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deanr201
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« Reply #504 on: August 11, 2015, 12:15:57 AM »

We finally added some extra wide stations for the wing coaster:

…which required some bigger changes, but the positive side effect is that tracked rides don’t need an entrance at every station anymore, as some of you requested.
Garret made a couple new generic scenery items:

He also did a first balancing pass on food, so resource and production costs of food items and their effects on guests should make more sense now.
There haven’t been any major new bugs popping up in the current testing phase, so we moved on to fixing a bunch of smaller stuff. Keep an eye out for a new build within the next 1-2 days if you’re in the testing group.
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FreakOrama
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« Reply #505 on: August 16, 2015, 06:57:00 AM »

Played with it, really enjoying it. One question though, are you planning to add progression mile-stones?

Like when you start the game you'll have something like "1. Build X1 2. Make roads 3. reach a population of XX 4. Have this ride make X dollars in a day 5. achieve a happiness rate of X% " and so one to keep and continuous 'guided' fun experience.

Keep that free mode where you do anything you want, but it would be nice to have a progression mode of some kind, goals the game sets for you to keep you busy every so often with new goals coming in as you finish one.
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« Reply #506 on: August 16, 2015, 07:29:35 AM »

Yup, there'll be scenarios with proper goals, and we'll also keep the free sandbox mode as an option.
It will stay sandbox only for a while though while we're working on other features and content.
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deanr201
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« Reply #507 on: August 16, 2015, 11:58:25 PM »

Update 58
Garret continues to work on generic scenery items. Here’s some new topiaries!

I finally got a bit away from bug fixing and back into working on new stuff.
Remember the blueprints from a couple weeks earlier?
A “blueprint” is what we’re calling a file that contains a tracked ride design. The game lets you save your tracked rides so you can easily rebuild it inside another park, or you can share it with someone else by giving them the blueprint file.
And this is what a blueprint looks like:

“Alright, that’s a neat screenshot of a ride”, you might say, “but how does this relate to what you said about blueprints above? It’s just an image.”
Well, it really is just a .png image, but it also contains some extra information hidden inside it that the game needs for loading this exact ride! You could simply download this image here1 to the games folder and then place the ride in one of your parks.

Neat…but why?

I actually did it the other way around and used a custom file format at first. You’d have a .blueprint file that contains the ride data, and inside that there’d be a screenshot of the ride that the game can use for quickly displaying a preview in the blueprint selection UI.
Turning it around is rarely done as far as I know, but it isn’t an entirely new idea either: most notably, Spore stored its creatures inside PNGs too.
Doing it like this has a couple of benefits:
it’s a nice and fun way to display your creations
makes sharing easier, as there are lots of websites that allow uploading images for free
good way to keep track of which file contains which coaster if you downloaded lots of rides to your computer, as you’ll get a preview of the ride contained within the file directly in your file explorer
it’s cool :D

How does it work?

So how does the game actually store ride data inside a PNG? There’s two ways I could think of (and that I both tried):

Using PNG chunks

PNG files consist of “chunks” - blocks of data that contain certain information about the image. Usually there’s at least the “IHDR” chunk, a header that contains the width and height of the image and information about how many bits are stored for each pixel; and the “IDAT” chunk that contains the actual pixel data. The cool part is that you can define your own chunks that can contain whatever data you want.
Wait, there’s an official method that allows us to store our game data inside the image? Awesome, problem solved, we’re done here!
Well, unfortunately not. It does work fine indeed - the problem is that some websites (e.g. Twitter) try to optimize uploaded PNGs to reduce file size, and oftentimes that includes stripping away all chunks that aren’t absolutely needed for displaying the image (in my test, the file size of Twitters “optimized” image without my custom data is actually bigger than my original file with the additional data chunk though :/).
Advantages of using PNG chunks
it’s a simple method that doesn’t require any weird hacks
can store arbitrary amounts of data inside the PNG
players could modify the image (e.g. writing the ride name and stats on it) without destroying the data stored inside it. People would probably do some interesting things with this.
Disadvantages
hard to tell whether the image still contains the data after downloading it from somewhere. Could confuse/annoy players.

(Ab)Using the pixel data

Which PNG chunk can’t possibly be optimized away? The “IDAT” chunk that contains the pixel data!
A truecolor PNG with alpha channel stores 32 bits of data for each pixel. That’s 8 bits for each channel: the red, green and blue color channels, and the alpha channel used for determining how transparent that pixel is.

A binary 8-bit number can store 256 different values, from 0 to 255. The left-most bit is the most significant bit, which means that changing it has the biggest influence on the resulting color of the pixel. For example, a binary value of 10000000 for the red channel represents the decimal value 128, meaning that this pixel has a red intensity of 128 out of a possible 256 (= 50%). The right-most bit is the least significant one: it changes the value only by 1/256th, and that’s almost nothing. Changing one color channel by 1/256th is such a little change that you have to look very, very closely to notice a difference.
So why don’t we use these least significant bits of the 4 color channels of each pixel for something more…useful? Like storing our ride data? :D
An image of 512 pixels width and 512 pixels height contains 262,144 pixels. We can use 4 bits from each pixel, so that gives us 1,048,576 bits = 128 kilobyte.
That’s plenty! For comparison, the ride pictured at the top of this post requires just about 5 kilobyte.
And in fact, if we zoom into that image and change the colors and increase the contrast a bit to make it easier to see…

See that noise in the top half? That’s our ride data Smiley
Advantages of using the pixel data
should survive all optimizations that some websites do. If they actually modify the pixel data you can usually easily tell, e.g. if the image has been resized.
Disadvantages
amount of data that can be stored is limited. We could sacrifice image quality and use the two least significant bits to double available space, or increase the image size if needed, or pad the image with transparent pixels for which we could use all 24 bits from the color channels. Still… it’ll be enough space for 99.999% of players, but someone will build something that doesn’t fit. Could fall back to a custom file format in that case or just disallow saving to a blueprint (if the ride has to be ridiculously big to hit the limit).
1 except Tumblr resizes images, so this blog is one of the places where it still doesn’t work Tongue
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marcgfx
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« Reply #508 on: August 17, 2015, 12:41:33 AM »

thats a brilliant idea, thanks for sharing. I wonder if using a 24bit png would be an improvement?
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JobLeonard
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« Reply #509 on: August 17, 2015, 04:26:02 AM »

The only downside is that many websites recompress your image.

Next challenge: can you fit it in a tweet? Wink
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deanr201
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« Reply #510 on: September 01, 2015, 12:40:56 AM »

Update 60
Phew. We completed another build, so if you’re one of our $40 Kickstarter backers you should be able to download it from Humble soon.
As you see that’s a relatively long list including some bigger changes, so we’ll give our testers some time now to find the problems that we missed, while we work on a couple of new things in the meantime.
We had a super fun art livestream this week where Garret modeled this new Wave Swinger ride, and I’ve put it into the game since:
https://vine.co/v/eIbFAW1FtBD/embed/simple
Really happy with how it turned out Smiley
$40 Backer Build Changelog v1.3
- added Blueprints (saving tracked ride designs)
- added Wave Swinger ride
- added new topiaries
- added a bunch of new build sfx
- added new Entertainer walk animation
- added shop and attraction satisfaction rates
- added Toilets getting dirty if used; Janitors clean them
- added some employee stats
- tweaked coaster physics (increased friction, so some old rides might not work anymore)
- did a balancing pass on flat ride and tracked ride stats
- did a balancing pass on guest happiness and ride preference
- made guests better at judging how much they liked a ride (Ferris Wheel and transport rides are still problematic)
- made terraforming tool and tower ride height changer feel more responsive
- shortened queue signs and lamps to fit into tunnels
- despawning derailed cars after a while; enabled collisions between cars
- increased max. support height on Suspended Coaster
- moved shops back a bit so guests don’t clip into them as badly
- made park visualizations (happiness, trash) respond faster
- guests: tweaked collision avoidance to look more natural, should also result in fewer collisions; better foot placement while walking
- increased attraction builder preview image sizes
- clamping number input fields to valid ranges
- improved the look of wooden supports on some terrain configurations
- fixed terraforming tool sometimes producing weird unexpected results with smoothing enabled
- fixed terraforming flatten tool not properly following the mouse cursor
- fixed cursor jumping around near vertical walls in terraforming tools
- fixed a case where guests would step onto employee paths
- fixed guests getting stuck if toilet they’re using is being deleted
- fixed tracked ride entrance/exit being deleted if adjacent station platform was removed
- fixed some problems with longitudinal G force calculation
- fixed a case where a path tile failed to delete and gave infinite refunds
- fixed park entrance being misaligned
- fixed newly hired employees appearing in the list of whatever employee tab is currently opened in the employee manager window
- fixed wooden supports clipping through the track
- fixed ghost train behaviour and stats for multi-station tracked rides
- fixed people getting confused on stairs (most notably guests on stair queues)
- fixed bench/lamp/bin-builder not previewing correct prices while multi-building objects using Shift key
- fixed fence builder not previewing building costs when dragging
- fixed park info window opened from sidebar menu being slightly different than when opened from clicking on park entrance
- fixed guests not receiving as much nausea on rides as intended
- might fix a bug that caused workers to stop working (blind fix, let me know if it still happens)
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carstorm
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« Reply #511 on: September 07, 2015, 05:18:39 PM »

I signed up mainly just to post this I comment after reading all 26 pages so I can better follow the topic (though I do subscribe to the Blogs RSS feed and hope to be active in other posts now that I have finally signed up)

More on topic, although I'm sure you have it I have seen no mention of it and want to be sure: is (or will there be) an option to switch between the imperial and metric systems? And on the same note will you be bale to switch between fahrenheit and celsius?
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