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Ages of Man: the BUG REPORTS thread

Discussion in 'Crazy Spatz's Alpha Centauri Mod' started by Spatzimaus, Sep 19, 2011.

  1. Spatzimaus

    Spatzimaus Mad Scientist

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    I had a big response ready for this yesterday, but then my browser crashed. So here goes again.

    That's the problem. I need a persistent updating ability, NOT something that is only tied to save/load periods; even if we DID have a save event, I really need something more reliable when making small changes between those events. Some of my variables are set at the start of the game and never touched again (your choice of pantheon or primary god), some are updated every once in a while (adding a minor god, changing alignment through an Event), and some occur every turn (or even several times per turn, like Favor increases). With that sort of variation, it just wouldn't be smart to use something that requires me to save the entire data structure every time I want to make a small change to a single entry. The ScriptData functions, which is what the save utilities I'm using now leverage, are more flexible on that.

    Now, all data access is linked through a series of utility access functions inside MythUtils.lua, so if I do end up changing my storage mechanism, it'd be transparent to my higher-level functions. So I could put some of my variables into one save mechanism and keep the old system for others if need be. The thing is, the save utilities I have DO work in other mods; it's just that for some reason, in my mod it's not indexing the Player structure correctly when saving values on later turns, and I'm not sure why. The fix is probably something fairly simple, so I'm still trying to see if the old logic can be saved before throwing it all out to use a new system. But if I can't get it to work, then I'll look into switching some of it to your system instead.
     
  2. Pazyryk

    Pazyryk Deity

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    I may be missing something obvious, but why? I mean, of course you have Lua tables (local or global or superglobal) that are accessed and updated at any time. These values don't disappear until you exit the game. The only thing that a DB table can do that a Lua table can't is survive game exit. Other than that, a DB table is inferior in every respect that I can think of. Particularly writing data: it takes about 1/6 of a second (on my machine) per transaction, no matter how small the transaction (reading is not a "transaction" so doesn't have this limitation, though it still crawls compared to accessing values held by Lua).

    What's the reliability issue? Lua variables? or DB tables? I have good evidence that the DB is absolutely reliable (checksum checks during the last 4 months of my modding). I have no reason to question Lua reliability either. Or is it reliability of using someone else's tools? (That I can fully appreciate. I write or rewrite everything that I use.)

    TableSave function is smarter than that. It knows what table elements have changed or been deleted since your last TableSave. It even knows whether a variable has changed type (say boolean to integer or text) and can update only the value or both value and type. So the cost of an unchanging variable is exactly two Lua comparisons (type and, if that hasn't changed, value) with no DB reading or writing. I can give fairly precise values here based on testing (on my computer): after dumping ~1000 values into a table, the first end turn thereafter TableSave takes about 1.1 sec. Thereafter, with my mod changing roughly 50 values on any one turn, the typical time is 0.3 sec. (The thread describes run time for some more extreme uses.) So there is a tiny cost here in that every Lua value has to be "looked at" on every turn, but < 1 sec on most turns as long as you keep your data under 3000 items or so.

    Well, there is another theoretical cost. TableSave keeps a local representation of the DB during run, so there is some demand on Lua variable space. I believe there are limits here and they are referenced in the logs somewhere. However, I never saw problems when I was "stress testing" TableSave up to about 20,000 table elements (though DB write time is prohibitive at that point).

    I use ScriptData for plot stuff all the time, simply because DB writing does take time and there are a lot of plots. I would argue with "flexible" though. The only thing my program asks you to do is reference your variable or table (that you want saved/restored) in an argument to the function. That's it.

    Given the scope of your modding I can understand. It would be like NASA switching from English to metric.;)

    Good to see you back on the forums.
     
  3. Spatzimaus

    Spatzimaus Mad Scientist

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    It's mainly a function of timing. Some variables update only at the start of the game, some update once per few turns, some update many times per turn. If it was something that I only had to do once per turn then that'd work fine for autosaves and the like, but if I want to make quicksaves or normal saves work, then I need to repeatedly update the database as the user takes actions during his turn; every battle adds Favor, every Event or minor god purchase has an alignment shift. I don't want to have it be that if a player saves the game after a battle and then loads the game, it forgets about the Favor that battle accrued because the structure saved was only stored at the start of the turn. So some of these variables need to be capable of an arbitrary number of updates per turn (mainly the Favor stuff), and that means I can't use a mechanism that adds a noticeable delay. If your setup wouldn't have problems with that sort of updating, then I'd be more than willing to use it, but the way you'd described it, it looked like it was intended to be more for large end-of-turn dumps than a continual low-level updating.

    So here's what's going on internally. Right now I've got the Mythology data structured as a three-level redundant system:

    The main level used is a simple structure (using MapModData as a storage mechanism), which as you noted is great to use and only has the downside that it won't survive a game exit. There's a second technical problem with how I spread data across the multiple mods, preventing me from using the access functions in the UI elements, but that's minor. (You can see this inside the TopPanel.lua in the Base mod; it has to access the MapModData structure directly to display Favor values or spawn the Mandala.)

    The second level currently consists of the SaveUtils; it's mainly intended for storing across a game exit, but it also has the advantage of being able to share definitions across multiple mods. This is the one we're talking about replacing. Right now I keep it continually updated in parallel with the first level, because when loading a savegame this is supposed to be the template that the first-level structure is restored from.

    The third level is the "physical" one, like giving the player PROJECT_PANTHEON_GREEK to denote that he picked the Greek Pantheon; obviously, this also persists across game exits with no chance of corruption. Since it's a Project, it's also handy for things like the Pantheon Myth units, allowing me to limit the units without the need for a CanConstruct event. Right now I only use this sort of mechanism for a few things, but it'd be easy to expand this further; give N copies of that project to a player, where N is 1-4 depending on which major god they picked. Or place a "Statue of Zeus" in the capital, to denote your choice that way. Or to figure out which minor gods the player added, just go through his cities and see which Foci have buildings (since you always have a free Shrine when adding a new minor god) and map that back to the gods for your chosen pantheon. You could even use a Pantheon as a counter for things like Favor (giving a player 8,739 copies of a Project to denote how much Favor he's accumulated). This is the crudest of the methods, but it's utterly reliable since Civ5 was designed to preserve this sort of information already across savegames of all types.

    The point being, without a Save-linked game event, I have no choice but to keep the second-level method as up-to-date as I possibly can, simply to match the other levels. The first-level structure will always be up-to-date (since it's the main structure used by the access functions), and any third-level logic will do so as well (as long as I manage it correctly), so whatever I use for the second level should be concurrent with whatever else was stored in the savegame file, whether it's an autosave, quick save, or normal save. That means I generally need something that updates continually; yes, in theory I could use something that only updates upon a save command and then NOT worry about keeping it concurrent, although the fact that I'd be autosaving every few turns means it'd still happen often. But without that event...

    To some extent, although I have no real problems with black-boxing things if need be. As long as the inputs and outputs are documented and the functions have all the features I need, I'm okay with using them. My objections are more about the other issues, like the overhead from saving/restoring one value out of a whole huge block of data. I know the TableSave is smart enough to know which elements have changed, but how much time does it cost for it to figure out which bits had changed? Does it actually check all the saved values against a baseline structure (like some other storage mods I've seen do)? For a while I'd tried using some of the other variable storage mechanisms Civ5 allows, and while they worked across saves, it was just so SLOW...

    The point is, if I were to switch methods like that, I'd still probably end up managing it as several tables instead of one big superstructure, because some variables are player-specific, some are city-specific, some are focus-specific, and some are city-and-focus-specific. Maybe the split between structures would be by that indexing, maybe the split would be more about how often the values are expected to update. As long as I can get something that works, I'll live with whatever other headaches it causes, but I just don't want something that adds a noticeable delay to every data access attempt.
     
  4. JJOne

    JJOne Warlord

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    Hello, I've just installed this mod and began a game with base, empires and ascensions, from the ancient era.
    Two loads, I lost both times to a transcendence victory on turn 11. Any ideas why this happens?
    defeat.jpg
     
  5. Spatzimaus

    Spatzimaus Mad Scientist

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    Very strange. I've never seen that; the Transcendence win is managed purely through Lua, so it shouldn't be possible to have that occur by accident. There are three basic possibilities I can think of:
    1> You're using some other mod that isn't compatible with mine. Note that even if you turned off another mod, it doesn't always remove it entirely from memory, so if you'd played some other mod right before mine, you could have this sort of thing occur.
    So first off: what other mods are you using at the same time? If the answer is "none", then go into your user directory (My Documents/My Games/Sid Meier's Civilization V/ for Win7 users) and clear the Cache folder. If it still happens then, we'll try something else.
    If you have Lua logs turned on, it'd be useful to check to see if there was a Lua error internally that caused the problem.

    2> The trigger for a transcendence win is linked to Anarchy. The way it works is that when you build the project, the game adds 120 turns of anarchy to your empire. The game automatically deducts one of these per turn, and when you drop below 100 (but have above 50) turns you win.
    I'm looking at changing this to a Project Count method instead, to not force the player into 20 turns of clicking "End Turn", but I haven't put that fix in yet.
    So, if the game is somehow giving an AI more than fifty turns of anarchy (which shouldn't be even remotely possible), they'd win, assuming they also have the project (which they obviously shouldn't).

    3> The log you quoted is wrong, it's not actually a Transcendence win, but something else is returning the incorrect value for the victory type. If it really was a transcend win, you should also have seen a notification (the little ones on the right-hand side of your screen) stating that player X has won a transcendence victory. Did you see that popup, or the ones that are supposed to appear in the turns before the win?

    I'll look into this tonight to see if there are any other loopholes in the method that might explain what you're seeing.

    -----------------------------------------------------

    To the rest of you, I'm sorry about the delays in the next version. Some Real Life stuff came up over the past week that had to take a higher priority, but I'll be working on the mods again over the next few nights.

    One thing I've run into is the previously mentioned bug in the Mythology mod, where the game bugs out if you had a Priest slotted in a religious building as it upgrades. Unfortunately, I can't see a solution; I haven't been able to find any Lua functions that allow me to override which buildings' specialist slots are in use. There might be one, and I'll keep looking, but if I can't fix this, then I'll have to make a HUGE design overhaul to make it still work. The overhaul would, simply, be that religious buildings don't "upgrade", they spawn.

    That is, you build a Shrine of Water. You reach 100 Favor, and it upgrades to a Church of Water. Currently, the Church replaces the Shrine, and includes all of its effects as well as new ones; both buildings have one specialist slot. Under the new system, the Shrine would not be removed, and the Church would be added to the city as well; the Church, now, would only include those bonuses that weren't present in the Shrine, and would no longer have a Priest slot.

    This has pros and cons.
    PROS: Since the Priest slots wouldn't be removed as you upgrade, it won't cause this bug during the Myth age. Certain effects that couldn't be doubled (like giving free promotions to units in this city) could now overlap, which'd greatly help with certain Foci.
    CONS: It crowds the UI's building lists. You wouldn't be able to prevent someone from putting a Priest in the slot for a Shrine that's already progressed to a Basilica (where the Favor no longer helps, which is why Basilicae have no slots in the current mod). You'll still run into the same bug at the Enlightenment when the Shrines start disappearing.
    MAYBE PRO, MAYBE CON: The Myth units. Right now, upgrading a Shrine to a Church means you can no longer build the Myth units of the Shrine; this is generally good for the AI, as it won't waste nearly as much time building obsolete units, although it hurts the player a bit since they might want those earlier units for certain roles. By keeping the Shrine, it'd mean that you'd be able to build all Myth units in a Focus up to your current level, which'd REALLY crowd your unit production list.

    Now, I'd prefer not to do any of this, so I'll keep looking at the Lua to see if I can find some other way to override the slotting. I'd really like that ability anyway, since I'm having a hard time convincing the AI to use Priest slots; for some stupid reason, the devs appear to have hard-coded it internally to only favor specialists when you pick the Great Person city focus, regardless of whether the specialists produce any great person points or not. I might have to change Priests to generate points towards a new GP type (Great Prophet?), which'd really skew the balance. But if I can find a way through Lua to FORCE the AI to use Priests at the right times, it could really fix this.
     
  6. JJOne

    JJOne Warlord

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    1. I have the game on Vista, with all DLC. I've cleared the cache before installing your mods.

    2. The workaround I found was deactivating transcendence victory condition. I don't know what effect will that have on the endgame (I'm still playing it).

    3. What I've noticed in the new game, maybe it can help: All other civs have in the global policy window also one of the social engineering policies (for example 5 honor, 3 economics, 1 social politics). Untill now I couldn't pick any social engineering policy - the tehnologies for that are not researched yet.
     
  7. Spatzimaus

    Spatzimaus Mad Scientist

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    Strange. Okay, I'll look into that; it might be as simple as needed to add a few new checks to the transcendence countdown, or switching to the project count method I'd mentioned above. It definitely should not be doing anything like what you've described.

    It'll make the Ascent to Transcendence project un-buildable. Since it's horribly unlikely that the game will still be competitive by the time you reach the end of the Nanotech era, it's not too unreasonable to just say "well, I WOULD have been the first to complete it, so I'm done." Obviously, this isn't an acceptable fix in the long term. I'm hoping that the changes I'm making for the next version will remove this issue, but since I can't get it to do what you've reported, there just might be some other problem I haven't accounted for.

    I should also note that once the DLL comes out, I do intend to overhaul the transcendence process to be a bit more involved. The original idea was that you'd sacrifice Great People to speed up the process, but for obvious reasons the AI isn't currently capable of managing that correctly. (This is why so many things in the Nanotech Era boost great person points/yields.)

    Not actually true. You already have one Social Engineering policy: it's a hidden one (POLICY_BASE), used to give an assortment of modifiers to all players. For instance, all those buildings that subtract happiness (Genejack Factory, Children's Creche, Gravity Shield, Robotic Assembly Plant, Dream Twister) do so through this policy, since the game won't recognize a negative Happiness value in the Buildings table. This extra policy is already taken into account in the culture cost equations; I tweaked the numbers exactly so that the progression of new policies is comparable to the old values, so you can't just use an arbitrary number of given policies for each player, but as long as I ensure everyone has one and only one "free" policy, it works great.

    There are two hidden SE policies in the Base mod: one you start with, and one you can never take (to prevent it from counting as a completed policy branch towards a Cultural win; it's called POLICY_NEVER). The Mythology mod adds another five hidden ones to rotate the era penalties, each replacing the Base policy for a different time period, and the Ascension mod adds the ten selectable non-hidden ones you're familiar with.

    The point is, everyone will have one SE policy at the start of any game. The only way to have more than one is to take the special SuperFinisher policies in the future eras, but the tables you refer to WILL show everyone as having at least one SE policy. I've accounted for this in the existing Social Policies UI, but InfoAddict-type mods that provide additional ways to compare players won't have that extra one hidden.
     
  8. JJOne

    JJOne Warlord

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    I've just found a little exploit: by each reload, the game adds the resource bonus of all built buildings once more.
    Unbenannt.jpg
     
  9. Spatzimaus

    Spatzimaus Mad Scientist

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    Does it KEEP those extra resource units, or is it just a temporary UI thing for the first turn after you reload the game?

    The reason I ask is, I use the Building Resources mod component to manage that, I've been using it effectively unchanged for the past year, and I've never seen it do that. If it's letting you keep the resources in error, it's possible that this is related to the save/load issues I had in my Mythology mod, to where an internal conflict is causing it to not save the values correctly into the database.
     
  10. JJOne

    JJOne Warlord

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    It keeps them, at least the numbers on top of the screen say so.
     
  11. dinobot386

    dinobot386 Prince

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    Ive been losing to transendance on turn 11 as well, (i actually got on to report that and saw it being discussed)
     
  12. dragonmage119

    dragonmage119 Chieftain

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    First i want to say this is a great mod and i love the mythological options. Now for the reason im posting:
    first the toolbar gold output seems to be malfunctioning. in the current game im playing at turns 90 to 95 the gold per turn says +0 when it was actually -1 once i got to where it was actually +0 it stayed at + 0 making it correct however as soon as i hit -1 it read +0 again upon opening the tooltip it showed i was getting 7 a turn losing 8 just like before After converting a barbarian to a zombie the bar read -1 and the tooltip read +7 -9 so it was actually -2 i double checked by hitting next turn to make sure it went down by two and it did. at turn 112 the tooltip reads +7 -10 while the counter has changed to -2 when i continued to the next turn the tool tip was correct again while the counter was the one incorrect again (edit: when the output is positive the counter is correct)
    the other aspects of the game seem to be working as they should however so this seems very minor. the settings are
    tiny skirmish map me as Montezuma vs Oda Nobunga marathon and the only mods installed are yours and the mongel scenario dlc the only active are age of: empires and mythology and the base my gods are Tezcatlipoca and Xochiquetzal
     
  13. Spatzimaus

    Spatzimaus Mad Scientist

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    Actually, that's not me, that's in the vanilla game. What happens is that the game rounds everything off in the UI, but internally the values are all decimals out to at least two places. So if it says +7 and -9, that might actually be +7.31 and -8.73; this'd give a net of -1.42, which it'd round to -1. You can see this in the City View window; if you mouse-over a yield it'll give the decimal values for every source.
    But when actually applying gold increases and decreases at the end of each turn, it rounds the values off at a different place (effectively turning each city's output into an integer before adding them all together), so you might lose 2 on the turn. Nothing I've done changes the way existing yields are displayed in any way; my only changes to that section of the UI were to enable the Favor display as well. (Well, okay, the existing UI also couldn't handle percentile increases to Food output correctly. But that's not causing this issue.)

    The reason you'll notice this more in my mod is that I've added in far more percentile modifiers to the underlying game. Citizens might produce 1.2, 1.26, or 1.32 unhappiness per population depending on era, whereas in the base game it's a flat 1.0 for the entire game. In the vanilla game you wouldn't get fractional yields for things like Gold until after you'd built Markets, Banks, etc., and most of those are a simple +25%, unlikely to cause any rounding errors. So, in the early eras everything's an integer and you never see any discrepancy, while in the later eras you're earning so much money that a difference of 1 either way means nothing. Whereas in my Mythology mod, you start off with a -5% or -10% penalty to most yields, which is far more likely to cause this issue in the early eras, and pretty much every yield has some modifier of this type right from the start.

    There was a time, back when I first started with the Alpha Centauri mod, when there WAS an artificial supplement to certain yields that could cause what you've described, but that's long since been replaced by the Head Start logic (which uses hidden buildings, and therefore causes no UI issues).
     
  14. TheMarshmallowBear

    TheMarshmallowBear Benelovent Chieftain of the BearKingdom

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    I'm not sure how this really fares.

    I used the Lakes map (the prvoided custom one) and started a new game as ISABELLA. I selected Shinto and can't remember the god I selected) and everything was fine, I get to Turn 6 and the God offers me a Favor so, going for Diplomatic Victory, select an ption that gives me influence on City States (note, I haven't met any) then next time I chose NEXT TURN the game hangs and crashes.

    I played a second game on Great Plains, once again as Isabella, but this time with 1 AI, few CSs, and while i managed to get further, I crashed at Turn 22.

    Does this have possibly something to do with DLCs? as it crashed when I began building Statue of Zeus (after I finished the turn, it always crashes when I finish the turn)
     
  15. Spatzimaus

    Spatzimaus Mad Scientist

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    Okay, I'll check that one. I thought I'd put in a no-contact override (to where if you hadn't met any CSs yet, it'd automatically make you meet a random one and then give that one the influence). But that might only have been done on the New Luxuries (moderate E) event's E option (which does the same thing but with more Influence).

    Do you have FireTuner running and/or logging turned on? It'd be useful to know if any Lua runtime errors occurred before the crash.

    It's possible. I don't have any of the DLCs (except the free Mongols one, of course), and so I can't absolutely guarantee there isn't a conflict in there somewhere. I doubt there'd be a Lua-related conflict, so what you need to do is check your database logs for me. Specifically, Database.log and xml.log will tell me if there's some sort of XML conflict between the DLC and my mods. Also, had you been running any mods other than mine, either in the game that crashed or in one right before it (to where it might still be in the cache)?

    If it's consistently crashing on the same turn for you, then yes, it's probably related to completing some specific thing and not a crash caused by some event (since that'd change each time you reloaded) or AI action. So if you can post those two logs, I could tell you if there's an incompatibility; it's possible that I've named something the same as in one of those DLCs.
     
  16. TheMarshmallowBear

    TheMarshmallowBear Benelovent Chieftain of the BearKingdom

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  17. Spatzimaus

    Spatzimaus Mad Scientist

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    Nothing really unusual in those; the xml.log is perfectly normal, and the only new thing in the Database.log are the missing 2D references for the various DLC UUs, which had nothing to do with me.

    Is there anything in the Lua.log? No need to post it, just search to see if the phrase "runtime error" appears anywhere.
     
  18. TheMarshmallowBear

    TheMarshmallowBear Benelovent Chieftain of the BearKingdom

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    Nope nothing, then what is casuing all those crashes? Surely it can't be my computer, it runs normal Civ (vanilla) perfectly without any crashes

    I'm gonna make an experiment and attempt to disable ALL DLcs (excluing Genghis Khan since there's no way that is causing it since its' free)

    Nope, still crashes, I deleted the cache folder (since maybe I should've done it the first time) The crashes apepar to be completely random.

    I did however notice a new issue, sometimes few City State appear to be "conquered" (could due to bad placement) I'm still using the actual maps provided (modified)

    Well, cleaning out the cache seemed to have fixed it, but it still crashed at turn 20 (previously, it crashed twice at turn 2-4) I have noidea, it's really frustrating, this looks like SUCH a promising mod and it doesn't seem to work.

    Btw, are Mysticism and Spirituality suppose to appear as TXT_MYSTICISM when discovered?
     
  19. Elderon

    Elderon Chieftain

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    Hey there, figure I may as well contribute my own bug report.

    I too have had my game ending on turn 11 due to Transcendence victory. In my first game it awarded the victory to me (I was quite shocked) and, figuring it was a fluke, I loaded another game which then awarded the transcendence victory to the AI.

    Like JJOne, I too was running the base, empire, and ascension mods. I, however, do not have any DLCs and am running it on Windows 7. My LUA log is also showing no errors.

    I also saw where you asked if there were any pop-ups. While there were no pop-ups the turns previous, there was the standard victory pop-up in the right hand corner of my screen on turn 11.

    Thanks again for these mods! I love them. :)
     
  20. Spatzimaus

    Spatzimaus Mad Scientist

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    Okay, that's just really strange. Also, I haven't been able to reproduce it; whenever I'd try a Base+Empires+Ascension game, it would work just fine for that. No sudden victories on turn 11 for anyone. And I've gone into the code; it shouldn't be POSSIBLE to have that happen, since the trigger requires completion of the ascendance project. That's why I was thinking that the problem isn't the transcendence itself; if the game was mis-indexing some other victory, then it could explain it. But since it's giving the popup, that tells me that it IS happening within my own logic somehow.

    But I've made a change to the game to try and eliminate this. To you, the player, the only noticeable difference will be that you no longer go into Anarchy when the timer is counting down. Anarchy prevented you from building anything or researching anything, which made for a pretty boring 20 turns. I'd originally gone with the Anarchy setting for two reasons: it made a convenient timer, and it added a drawback to the player who reached it first. But since the shrinking-city logic is still in place, I've already got a pretty good drawback for the frontrunner player, and I found a different way to make a timer that doesn't require anarchy.
    If it still continues to give this bug for the rest of you, then that'll help me narrow down the problem.

    I'm hoping to get the new version uploaded by tomorrow night; I'm in the middle of re-coding the memory management in the Mythology mod (say THAT three times fast), and adding a few dozen new pantheon-specific Events to replace the old eight generic High events. I want to test a few of these things before uploading anything, to make sure no major crash bugs were added, but I won't have time to try out every possible combination of event outcomes and such. So when I do upload it, understand that certain parts of the logic will still be a bit... unstable. And the balance in the Mythology mod will be a bit off, since I've rearranged the tech tree again. Trust me, it's an improvement.
     

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