Wednesday, July 7, 2010

The Midway for PS3 Home (release report pt 3)

It’s a blur… (12:30pm ?)

This is where my memory gets a bit fuzzy. What quite came first.. where did all the hours go etc. I know I spent a few more hours in The Midway itself. Talking to people and playing the games. We didn’t believe the phantom ticket was our fault. Therefore it was very unlikely we could fix this. So we were left to look at what else was happening. I started looking at some aspects of The Midway that may need fixing up or improving for the next version or upgrade for this one. Mostly the afternoon went very fast. As I said, playing the games and wandering around chatting to people. I cannot honestly remember much else about Thursday afternoon, it’s all a blur…

july 2nd -Friday (9am)

Friday morning started bright and early and I was looking forward to seeing how The Midway survived the night. So I eagerly headed off for work a bit early and got there at about 8:30am. The place was fairly quiet. Then the boss comes in and starts to tell me about the PS3 forums and what has been going on in them. This was the time we were informed that the forums had mentioned a possible fix for The Midway not working correctly for some people. Someone had figured out that it was due to having the Video settings set to SDTV mode and not widescreen. Whhaaat? How can this be? They also mentioned this fixed Andy’s room and the jumping on the bed minigame in there (Andy’s room for Disney is also one of our recent jobs). Woah, I had to run to my code immediately. A quick search for code specific to the aspect ratio of the game soon turned up an answer. This took me approximately 20 seconds to figure out what was wrong. Needless to say I was not quite as disappointed as I expected, in fact I was rather happy I had the solution to people not being able to play or get rewards.

So armed with this very startling information I headed off to the computer. I happen to know we have very little code pertaining to the SDTV functionality, so I knew I would be looking at a very small selection of code. (handy knowing what we test for). First thing I did was a sanity check and I downloaded The Midway to a PS3 I have set in that mode. I saw the crash of the Scene script immediately. I saw there was no HUD, and I also saw there was no Darlas Den given at the start. Finally I saw that none of the games could be played. This is the exact problem as described by people in The Midway having issues. So it was time to look at the code. I popped up my Codewright and searched through all the Lua code for Widescreen. BAM… I will say that again. BAAAM!! There it is. Yeah it was that easy. Staring me in the face was the widescreen test, and inside the If-then statement were a couple of lines that we should not have there. It was the dreaded test code. In fact you might all be interested to know that the test code was to show the current Prize score while in The Midway itself. So what had happened was the definitions and code for these variables had been commented out. However these two had been left and not noticed.

This was a real downer for a moment, till we all realized that we had at least got the answer and it wasn’t so in depth a code change that we could not get this online asap. So I altered the code and packaged it up. Then I tested it of course. It worked as expected, so now we need to get it uploaded to the Sonys CDS.

ARGH! (9:30am)

Here we are with a quick fix. A simple fix and one that I had the fullest confidence in. Which is unusual for me as I tend to always expect things to break if they can. And here it is, the break is simply that after an hour of trying to upload the scenes package file it crashes. Yeah.. so I am trying all sorts, going out to the internet through a second jack and therefore the T1 line. It did not matter, the CDS was having issues and I could not force them to be better. So after some time I settled on looking at the Bouncing on the bed code from Andy’s room.

Bouncing bed of fun (11:30am)

I went right in on this code and looked up the widescreen variable as before. Lo and behold it quickly sent me to an If-then-else statement. In that statement were two possible routes for the code to travel. In the first half there were a couple of variables for counting the number of stars collected. It had the declaration inside the If statement. In the else part though there was no declaration of the variables, but they were still used, exclusively in widescreen mode. This was the culprit, a nil varable. So after commenting out 4 lines of code the Bouncing on the bed worked fine in SDTV mode. YAY! Two fixes in one day. I passed the fixes over to the guy who was looking after Toystory and he was going to upload the fixed minigame. However CDS was still having issues. So it must have been lunch time. So off we went to lunch, and I cannot even remember where.

In the afternoon we managed to get the version up into the CDS, but could not quite push them through to Sony test. It did seem like Sonys servers etc were being inundated and we hoped it was a successful launch of The Midway that did this. So we filled in all the paperwork and emailed Sony the relevant information. Then I went back to The Midway to spend the Bosses tickets :D such fun haha. I was also helping pass the word about the widescreen mode fixing the SDTV mode issues. This was a good way to work on a Friday afternoon.

I did hope that Sony would get back to me before the day was out, but that did not happen. So I was left to wonder over the July 4th weekend. Or was I ?


No comments:

Post a Comment