Shivers: bug report

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legluondunet
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Shivers: bug report

Post by legluondunet » Mon Aug 10, 2015 6:35 am

Hello,

I just compiled ScummVM from git and I tried to play Shivers:
as you can see, I obtain glitches after the game play a video:


Image

Image

and the background sound regularly disappear.
Do you pan to fully support this game in a near future?

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md5
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Post by md5 » Mon Aug 10, 2015 10:08 am

Hello

Thanks for the feedback. Shivers isn't officially supported, as a lot of the graphics code will need to be rewritten so that it works correctly, together with the rest of the newer SCI games (SCI2, SCI2.1 and SCI3).

It will eventually be supported in the future, but there isn't any definite plan as to when that will happen.

Carri
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Post by Carri » Tue Aug 11, 2015 2:28 pm

I understand Shivers 1 is not yet supported, but I have been testing it out with a daily build I downloaded on Sunday. I want to post a full bug report here in case someone wants to fix it in the future.

At first glance, the game almost appears to work perfectly. For most of the game, you do get the graphic glitch posted above, however, as soon as you click away from it, you get a perfect screen. So that's minor and doesn't make the game unplayable. What does make the game unplayable are a few nasty bugs.

A major bug is that the jukebox in the clocktower is completely broken because the red button is not showing up and clicking all over the screen doesn't get you anywhere with it. I have no idea why the button is not showing up. I tested this with two different pc's and two different versions of Shivers and the same thing happened. There is no red button. Without it, you cannot unlock the Anansi Spider Puzzle in the upper level and will never get that pot piece. So that right there, you will never finish this game.

Another major bug is not a graphical glitch, it's a sound issue. The puzzle inside the puzzle room, The Phoenician Puzzle, crashes every single time you try to pull the lever. It is crashing due to a sound glitch in that room. I couldn't find a workaround for it. It opens the door to another puzzle room, so without being able to open that door, you will never finish this game.

The third bug I found was down in the maze tarpit. There is a graphical glitch with the skeleton dial. It's rendering the graphic below the screen, but I was able to get past it by clicking lower on the screen.

The other thing that glitches but is minor is the door sounds do not always fully play because the sounds from the room will stop them. That old dual sound bug with Sierra games is definitely happening with it. But it's minor. Just annoying. The sound will shut off if you play a door and just don't move, you'll hear the door sound and then you might not get the room's music until you re-enter the room.

I didn't fully finish the rest of the museum, but I did about 90 percent of it so far, and everything I've done played perfectly.

I used to be able to play the full game in VMlite until Windows 10, and now I haven't been able to get a good VM to work with 10 yet. Most of them are still being updated for it. And the ones I've tried, resulted in a too slow and choppy game, plus many program crashes.

The game is half playable and actually looks beautiful in SCUMMVM's daily build. But without a patch to fix the bugs, no one will ever finish it. I hope someone in the future who wants to work on this code will read this post and make a patch for it. Or upload a few saves to get past these areas.

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m_kiewitz
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Post by m_kiewitz » Tue Aug 11, 2015 2:45 pm

The thing is:

All of the current graphics code for SCI32 is literally guessed by us, none of it was properly reverse engineered.

This was done to figure out how SCI32 handled graphics internally. It's nice to have especially Gabriel Knight 1 looks pretty good considering that everything was guessed.

Which means we will have to fully rewrite it at some point in any case.

Carri
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Post by Carri » Tue Aug 11, 2015 5:30 pm

I would make the patch myself, but I'm really not fluent in Sci32. I've seen the codes, but I wasn't able to figure out which scripts go with which room. I probably don't even have the right tool for it. Really, these bugs, other than the graphical glitch, can easily be fixed with code patches. All that's needed is to bypass these few triggers. Instead of needing the red button for the jukebox, it should simply be made to play when you set the regular buttons on it. And the puzzle room door should be set to already be opened.

This whole situation frustrates me to no end because when I code a game, I always put in a "skip it" button so the player has the option to skip a puzzle they don't want to do or that their pc can't handle. Unfortunately, Sierra never did that with this game.

Does anyone know if they can get the debugger to work in game? I don't know if I'm just not pressing the right keys or if it simply doesn't work on this game. Just wondering if these areas could be bypassed in debugging mode. But even if we got teleport to work in debugging, the player still needs to know what to enter for the room number or name to get to it.

To answer my own question on the debugging, the codes for the debugging are in the 940.hep file. And Teleport is definitely still listed, as well as, the names of the rooms. I'm just not sure exactly how to activate the debugging mode for this game yet. I tried the tild key, it didn't do it. I'll have to mess around with it a bit more.

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DrMcCoy
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Post by DrMcCoy » Tue Aug 11, 2015 8:09 pm

Carri wrote:I want to post a full bug report here
No.

You have been told that Shivers is not yet supported. We do not take bug reports for unsupported games, because we know they are broken. We are very aware of what's broken and missing and wrong, thank you very much. We have eyes, you know.

When someone is baking a cake, and is currently preparing the cake pan, pre-heating the oven, etc., do you then come up to them, point at the eggs and say "you still need to separate the egg whites"? And then go on a lengthy essay about beaten egg whites?

Please don't do that. It's frustrating for all involved and accomplishes nothing. Thanks.

That said, if you really want to help development of the SCI engine in ScummVM along, we do take pull requests on GitHub. The changes have to make sense, though. And just adding ways to skip puzzles is not necessarily what we're looking for [1]. Especially in the SCI engine, where a lot of "ground work" for the later engine versions still have to be done.

[1] Please don't submit patches to just skip the puzzles. Thanks.

Carri
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Post by Carri » Tue Aug 11, 2015 9:21 pm

There is very little about this game's coding that is posted anywhere. It is only my hope that someone in the future who wants to work on this will read the info from this post. That is all. If you really know all there is to know about it, than I fully expect that you, personally, will fix it all in the future, DrMcCoy. At the very least, my posts have fully explained to anyone looking, why their game will never work as is. There is no need for me to post further about it.

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DrMcCoy
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Post by DrMcCoy » Tue Aug 11, 2015 9:35 pm

Carri wrote:There is very little about this game's coding that is posted anywhere.
Thanks to the work of the FreeSCI team, SCI is one of the better documented engines in ScummVM:

http://wiki.scummvm.org/index.php/SCI#Resources, especially http://wiki.scummvm.org/index.php/SCI/Specifications

This does not cover Shivers in the specifics, and not the later engine versions, but it is a great introduction into the workings of and concepts behind the SCI engine. If you want to put your money where your mouth is, that would be a good way to start.

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legluondunet
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Post by legluondunet » Thu Jul 14, 2016 8:09 pm

Hey ScummVM dev, did you resolve the 2 bugs I talked about? I can not reproduce them with the last Git version.
And when I launch Shivers, the "are you sure, experimental game" are not shown anymore...

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md5
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Post by md5 » Mon Jul 18, 2016 11:41 am

legluondunet wrote:Hey ScummVM dev, did you resolve the 2 bugs I talked about? I can not reproduce them with the last Git version.
And when I launch Shivers, the "are you sure, experimental game" are not shown anymore...
There have been a lot of improvements to the engine supporting the latest SCI games, but they are still not marked as stable. You will see a relevant post when these games are properly supported.

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