Read Before Posting (Last Updated 04-Feb-2006)

Problems with the Mac version of Darwinia

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Read Before Posting (Last Updated 04-Feb-2006)

Postby xander » Mon Jan 10, 2005 8:31 am

Read This Before Posting a Bug Report
Darwinia is still very much a work in progress on the Macintosh. There are many know issues with performance, which are being worked on (we hope) by those in charge. Most of these issues have to do with the Macintosh implementation of OpenGL, and with the rendering and AI code in Darwinia. If you are suffering from major performance problems, I suggest that you first try the patch (version 1.2.2, version 1.4 is on its way). The patch does a great deal to improve performance, fixes several crashes, and makes some minor tweaks to the interface.

If you are still having major performance issues, there are a few other things that you can try. First, turn down the graphical quality settings. There are two ways that you can do this. If Darwinia is running, hit [ESC] to bring up the menu. Click on 'Options', then 'Graphics Options'. Fiddle with the settings until performance improves. You will probably have to set everything to 'Low' or 'I need to upgrade'. Also, try turning the Pixel Effect off.

If Darwinia is not running, you can manually alter the preferences file. Darwinia's preferences are stored in a plain text file in '~/Library/Application Support/Darwinia/[full|demo]/' (i.e. preferences for the demo are stored in the directory 'demo/' and preferences for the full game are stored in 'full/'). For Mac users that may not be familier with this notation, '~/' is your home directory. You can open 'preferences.txt' with any text editor, including TextEdit. Look for these lines:

Code: Select all

RenderLandscapeDetail = 3
RenderWaterDetail = 1
RenderBuildingDetail = 1
RenderEntityDetail = 1
RenderCloudDetail = 1
RenderPixelShader = 1

These lines correspond to the Graphics Options from above. The numbers range from 1 to 3 (4, in the case of RenderLandscapeDetail), with 1 being the highest quality, and 3 (or 4) being the lowest quality. Lower the quality a bit, and set RenderPixelShader to 0. Save the changes, and restart Darwinia.

As framerates drop, several Mac users have noted that the mouse is not as responsive. This can lead to officers giving orders when you don't want them to, or squads firing off weapons instead of moving. If you have a two-button mouse, you can make full use of it by changing this line in 'preferences.txt':

Code: Select all

ControlMouseButtons = 2
If this line is set to 1, a single mouse click will give a unit a goto order (i.e. it will move to the location that you click), and a click-and-hold will cause some kind of special behavior (i.e. officers will give a goto order, squads will fire their lasers). If this line is set to 2, a single left click will behave as a single mouse click above. The right button will cause the special behavior, and holding the right button while clicking the left button will cause squads to fire their secondary weapon (i.e. grenades).

If you are suffering from some other bug, please search to forums before creating a redundant thread. Remember, search is your friend.

How to Write a Good Bug Report
If the above does not solve your problem, or it is not adressed in the forums, you probably want to write a bug report. First, what not to do:

These boards are run by Introversion Software (IV), and frequented by IV fans. As such, if you post an 18 paragraph rant about how stupid the game is, and how it ruined your life, caused you to divorce your wife, broke your truck, and killed your dog, you are not likely to get much constructive help.

Most of us are interested in helping you out. To do this, we will need information. It would be helpful, for instance, to know a little about your hardware. What processor does your computer have? How much RAM does it have? What video card? If you do not know, here is how you can find out:
1) From the Apple Menu, click on 'About This Mac'
2) Click on 'More Info...' -- this will open the System Profiler
3) You can figure out what hardware you have by clicking on the various items on the left side of the window. The interface should be fairly intuitive.

We will want to know the following:
What model Mac are you using (PowerBook, iMac, &c.)?
What processor are does your machine have, and how fast is it?
How much RAM do you have?
What video card do you have?
Is there anything else that makes your computer unique?

If Darwinia is crashing, it will gererally try to create a crashlog, called 'blackbox.txt'. You should be able to find this file in your home directory. A typical 'blackbox.txt' file looks like this:

Code: Select all


VERSION : macosx-full-1.2.2
ERROR   : 'Invalid map file specified'

====== STACKTRACE =======

retAddress = 0x5fbf8
retAddress = 0x5f9b4
retAddress = 0x56acc
retAddress = 0x58db4
retAddress = 0x42228
retAddress = 0x2cfd8
retAddress = 0x863f4
retAddress = 0x86550
retAddress = 0x7873c
retAddress = 0x5dc4
retAddress = 0x9287bbf8
retAddress = 0x90771840
retAddress = 0x90769964
retAddress = 0x92866000
retAddress = 0x9361f620
retAddress = 0x9361f50c
retAddress = 0x9361f054
retAddress = 0x9361ebfc
retAddress = 0x9287cc04
retAddress = 0x9287ca64
retAddress = 0x91450a40
retAddress = 0x914508dc
retAddress = 0x91450734
retAddress = 0x931253e4
retAddress = 0x9361d344
retAddress = 0x9361ce68
retAddress = 0x936193cc
retAddress = 0x93709c1c
retAddress = 0x60a0
retAddress = 0x2f60
retAddress = 0x2dd4
retAddress = 0x0

If you give us all of that information, there is a good chance that we can solve it.

Do not be discouraged if it takes some time for folk to get back to you. There are not always people online, and the Mac community is a small subset of the people playing Darwinia. Also, please don't get offended when people respond with things that don't work, or that you have already tried. In the first case, we don't always know what will work, and need may need to go through several possibilities. In the second case, if you don't tell us that you have already done something, we won't know. As always, more information is better than less. Trouble shooting is a cooperative process -- we need your help to diagnose your problem as much as you need ours to solve it.

Finally, if you are not getting any help here, there are several other places that you can try:
ASW's Darwinia Boards #darwinia (or #uplink if no one is on #darwinia) #darwinia

Release Information
Current Release Version: 1.2.2
You can download the most recent version of Darwinia from Ambrosia Software (ASW). If you have not registered the game, you will only be allowed to play the first two levels. To unlock the remaining levels, you will have to pay $29.00 US to ASW.

Beta Bug List
I have noticed similar such lists in other areas of the forum, but none in the Mac specific forum. As such, I will attempt to compile it myself. If you have any issues (i.e. if I missed something or misrepresented something or whatever) feel free to send me a private message. I am sorry for the paucity of details related to Phase 2 bugs, but I am only a Phase 1 tester -- any help from Phase 2 testers would be greatly appreciated). Each bug is listed below with a link and a brief description, as well as the date that they were added to the list.
List Created: 09 January 2005 - 0730 GMT
Last Updated: 11 March 2005 - 0045 GMT

Status can be as follows:
Not a Bug - intentional behavior or forum topics for discussion of Mac specific non-bug issues
Unreplicated - the bug has been posted and no one has replied confirming the bug
Replicated - other users have responded with confirmations
Work Around - there is a work around for the bug, generally refer to the post for details
Fixed - the bug has been fixed
Refer to Post - none of the above

NOTE: several topics have reported problems starting Darwinia. While I have listed most of these below, the most common problem is an out of date sysinfo.txt file. If you are having trouble getting Darwinia to run, try updating your sysinfo using the utility provided by Introversion, then re-downloading the game and trying again.

QUICK LIST OF UNREPLICATED BUGS: Please try to reproduce these bugs.

Crash When Switching to Windowed Mode
Crash on Extreme Resolution
Background Error Messages Disable the Keyboard
Logout When Using Built-In Screenshot
Crash on Profile Change
Instability After Extended Game Play
Trouble Running Programs
Graphics Issues in OS 10.4 (Tiger)
Bad Textures
Odd Unit Behavior After Zooming
Various (Phase 2 only?)
Saved Darwinians Count Goes Down in Containment (Phase 2 only)
Cone of Yellow Light Overwhelms the Screen

GENERAL ISSUES: These issues affect both the Phase 1 and Phase 2 betas. Unless otherwise indicated, these bugs have not yet been fixed and their forum topics are still open.

Crash on Start:
Added to List: 09 January 2005
there are several topics that report startup errors:
1 -- SDL failed to set video mode 1024 x 768
2 -- fatal signal 10 on startup -- also reported in this locked topic and in this topic
3 -- fatal signal 10 caused by authentication error because of extra sound devices
4 -- SDL is not installed, install and try again -- also reported here and here
5 -- sysinfo is out of date, update and re-download -- also reported here, here, and here
6 -- fatal signal 11 on startup
Status: Refer to Posts

Crash on Quit:
just what the topic says
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Replicated (Fixed?)

Crash When Switching to Windowed Mode:
game crashes when switching to windowed mode
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

Crash on Extreme Resolution:
the game will allow windowed mode at resolutions greater than what is allowed by the video card, and crashes in the non-windowed mode at extreme resolutions
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

Crash on Low Memory (?):
Darwinia crashes, reporting 'Fatal Signal 11' -- this may be related to low memory
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Refer to Post (Replicated?)

Crash on Debug Menu Invocation:
the game crashes when the prefs menus is invoked from the debug menu -- this was reported for beta3 and appears to have been fixed
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Replicated (Fixed?)

Background Error Messages Disable the Keyboard:
OS error messages, such as low battery warnings, disable the keyboard and force the user to force quit Darwinia
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

Logout When Using Built-In Screenshot:
Darwinia crashes when using the command-shift-3 key combination (the built-in screenshot function)
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

Sound Issues:
the sound is distorted when the game is launched
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Replicated

the camera can go through terrain and underwater (another link -- Class B Forum)
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Replicated

Crash on Profile Change:
just like is sounds
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

Instability After Extended Game Play:
the game becomes unstable after it has been running for a while
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

Gesture Difficulty:
gestures are difficult to make
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Fixed

Alt-Tab vs Command-Tab:
discussion of task manager key combinations
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Not a Bug

Windowed Mode Issues:
various problems with game behavior in windowed mode
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Refer to Post

Low Framerate:
framerate is less than 5 FPS, making the game choppy and unresponsive
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Replicated

Trouble Running Programs:
the game make the 'gesture recognized' sound, but no program runs -- this has not been replicated
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

Waking from Sleep:
the game has trouble running after the system is awakened from sleep
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Staus: Unreplicated

Problems with Incomplete Gestures:
this is a platform independent bug that appears to have been fixed in beta5
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Fixed

Black Screenshots:
screenshots are black, except for some details - also reported in [ur=]this[/url] locked topic
NB: I have managed to work around this in the demo by switching to the windowed mode
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Replicated (Fixed?)

Jumpy Camera:
the camera is jumpy -- similar bugs are posted here, here, and here, as well as in the Class A and Class C forums
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Replicated

Help Ceases:
while the 'press h for help' message continues to flash on the screen, no help is provided when 'h' is pressed -- this topic also brings up problems with the help system
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Staus: Replicated

Graphics Issues in OS 10.4 (Tiger):
graphics behave oddly in Tiger -- if anyone other than Cap'n Hector is running the beta in Tiger, please read and respond to the listed post
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

Darwinia is Battery Intensive:
Darwinia seems to suck the life out of laptop batteries
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Refer to Post

Failure to Connect to Localhost:
system.log reports a failure to connect to localhost during gameplay -- this bug appears to have been fixed
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Fixed

Bad Textures:
textures and shading do not appear to be behaving properly
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

Odd Unit Behavior After Zooming:
this bug seems to be related to the specific hardware being used by Red Intruder
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Refer to Post (Unreplicated)

Cone of Yellow Light Overwhelms the Screen:
the screen is overwhelmed by a cone of yellow light
Added to List: 23 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

PHASE 2 SPECIFIC ISSUES: These bugs affect only the Phase 2 beta. As I am not a Phase 2 tester, any information that Phase 2 testers could provide me would be appreciated.

Crash on Start:
the game crashes on start
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Replicated

Startup Issues:
the intro movies are shown with a very low framerate, and the Mine starts with all buildings controlled
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Replicated / Refer to Post

'Souls' Loader Runs Slowly:
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Replicated(?)

this post reports various errors related to the Phase 2 beta: the camera does not unzoom; dock behaves strangely on quit; extreme processor usage; low framerate; ControlMouseButton issues; strange text file named 'blah.txt'
Added to List: 09 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

Saved Darwinian Count Goes Down in Containment:
the number of saved Darwinians goes down, making the level impossible to finish
Added to List: 18 January 2005
Status: Unreplicated

LOCKED TOPICS: The topics relating to these bugs have been locked. These bugs should have been fixed in the most recent beta. If you are experiencing any of these problems, first make sure that you are running the most current beta (see the top of this post). If any of these bugs is still a problem in the most recent beta, open a new topic and link back to the locked one.

Locked as of 09 January 2005 (fixed as of beta5):
SDL Framework is Missing
Research Goals Cannot be Changed
.plist File is Incorrectly Named
Fatal Error When Accessing Prefs
Fatal Signal 10 -- also here, here, here, and here
Fatal Signal 11
Crash on Start
Crash on userid.txt Change -- this is intentional behavior
ESC Quits Darwinia -- this is old behavior that was intentional, but should have been fixed
Screenshots are Black
System Information Utility Crashes -- also reported here

EDIT: 11 January 2005 - 1900 GMT
bugs now show status
bugs now show the date that they were added to this list
typos and formatting fixed

EDIT: 18 January 2005 - 0045 GMT
bug added

EDIT: 23 January 2005 - 1930 GMT
bug added
dates corrected (2005, not 2004 -- duh)

EDIT: 11 March 2005 - 0045 GMT
release information added

EDIT: 6 July 2005 - 2115 GMT
bug list officially declared defunct
bug posting information added

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