Before Alpha 24 reaches Stable Status

With new mechanics such as the New Weather System, New Builder Tool and Multiplayer being developed all together in Stonehearth Alpha 24, there are small things that urgently need to be fixed before Alpha 24 becomes Stable.
This topic is not a suggestion, but rather things that the game should fix before it is considered stable, otherwise it wouldn’t be a update, but a downgrade.
My intention to open this discussion is to find ways to improve the game, not to critize or despise it.

  1. Performance Improvements / Optimizations
    From Alpha 23 and beyond, Stonehearth is beginning to demand way too much from the customers’ computer. That is an issue already being discussed here by @Banto.
    Right now you need to have a really good processor in order to play the game smoothly after about 10 hearthlings. The New Weather System, the New Builder and now Multiplayer are making the game unplayable for most low-end computer players, and should be solved to prevent people from being on Alpha 23 forever.

  2. The New Builder Tool
    The New Builder is, at least to me, one of the single best updates recently. Building in Stonehearth had a really rough learning curve, and with the new tool building is much easier and faster.
    However, there are still many issues regarding it: network not counting, undeploying items, moving items after building is finished, ghost objects, arrows pointing what direction is the front of the object, and a ton of little bugs that need to be fixed before stable branch.

For now, those are all the majors problems I have found while playing Unstable Alpha 24, and it looks like I’m not the only one having issues like those that can seriously damage the gameplay.
If you disagree with anything, or want to add something, feel free to reply, quote or mention me in this and other topics related to the subject.


In other news, the sky is blue and water is wet. :stuck_out_tongue: But seriously, yes, those 2 are our focus right now.


Agreed on the optimization part.
This is all I see after getting more than 12 hearthlings:
This basically causes the hearthlings to stutter while moving and makes them idle more often, especially slowing down building time for houses.
Really unfortunate considering the fact that my PC was able to handle about 20 hearthlings just fine on previous alpha builds. Right now I’m basically limited to small towns and can’t progress through the campaign due to lack of hearthlings, especially for military.

About the performace: how much rendering is done on the GPU? I have a feeling some things are done on my CPU instead despite forcing using the GPU in nVidia panel.

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The only graphical thing that can be done on the GPU but is done on the CPU is updating cubemitters. The rest is all GPU. Even animations are using pure hardware skinning. The client does still use a bunch of CPU for scene management, networking, and all the Lua interactivity stuff.

Not that this excuses it or anything, but I’m finding that excessive Lua usage can be fixed for 30 min to an hour with a save and reload.

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Not for me. I know that, but it only lasts for about 15 minutes before the Lua chaos comes back.
It gets tedious very fast to restart the game all the time just to get the supposed perfomance for a short amount of time.

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I understand. I blew a ton of money on my machine back in the day, so it’s possible this limit depends on some attribute of specs, like RAM. Check my profile for my specs, are you around there?

Certainly you have more RAM than me. I only have 8GB, but my motherboard can support another one. Maybe if I could increase the RAM size this could make it slightly better.
Though, it’s really just the AI issue for me. FPS wise the game is fine and runs smoothly as long as I don’t use the building vision tool which removes some walls from houses to see the interiors.

Yeah, I don’t think I’ve ever heard of anyone having FPS problems with Stonehearth, it does not strike me as a graphically intensive game. The lag is probably coming from some table growing too big to address timely. Although in my case, the change always comes on very suddenly: I’m playing fine, then the game lags up, Lua shoots up to 60/80% per game update, and the console starts printing stuff like “took 250 ms to update game state” (I BELIEVE the normal time is around or exactly 100 ms for Stonehearth) over and over constantly. Like a gear gets jammed somewhere and the whole thing starts creaking. It’s weird.