Public Alpha of the new UI

Discussions of the development process of the game.
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Zukero
Lead Developer
Posts: 1735
Joined: Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:56 am
android_version: 8.0

Public Alpha of the new UI

Post by Zukero » Mon Dec 11, 2017 11:18 pm

Hello adventurers,

If you read the Project news, you already know that I worked on making the game look more like a game, and less like a productivity app from the Android 2.1 era.
As with everything related to displaying stuff on android, this is a sensible matter. Different vendors and android versions have a tendency to display things differently. I tested this on a large panel of android versions from 1.6 (yes, android Donut) to 8.0 (the fresh Oero), but I'm interested in your feedback, especially if you are using an old device, or a cheap one, or an exotic one from a lesser known vendor, or even one with a custom ROM with heavy visual customizations... or if you have some form of visual deficiency.

It's best to post your report as a reply here, but it's OK to PM it to me, especially if you suffer from a visual deficiency (color blindness or other) that is relevant to your perception of the new UI, but that you don't want to share publicly.

You can get the alpha build from a link at the end of this post, riiiight after the long list of instructions you SHOULD read in order to prevent breaking saves, and to install safely.

Information to include in your report:
- Device brand and model
- Android version, including custom ROM details if applicable.
- System language and "Localized resources" preferences setting (What language is used in the UI).
- Screenshots for any issue. It's hard to explain what looks weird without a picture.
- What you like.
- What you don't like.
- How well you can read the text on screen.

What NOT to report:
- You failed to install the APK. If you can't succeed with the instructions below, you probably shouldn't try to install an alpha build anyway.
- You broke your favorite save. Alpha builds DO THAT ON PURPOSE. You can follow the instructions below to make a backup, but overall, you should avoid using the save function at all, except maybe in a new, dedicated savegame slot.

General instructions

Here's a list of what you should do before and after:
  • Install a file explorer on your device, like Amaze File Manager (F-Droid link), or ES File Explorer (powerful and versatile, but ad-ridden, and poisons you with notifications until you opt-out in the settings).
  • Backup your saves. This is important. An alpha build can permanently corrupt a save if you overwrite it, and can mess up your worldmaps (see below).
  • Download the APK.
  • Uninstall the Google Play (or F-Droid) version of Andor's Trail, as otherwise, you won't be able to install the alpha build.
  • Temporarily allow installation from sources other then Google Play (see below).
  • Install it by launching it from the file manager. This is very important on Oreo as otherwise, you risk to allow applications to be installed from your Web browser, and you really don't want that.
  • Revert the setting allowing installation from sources other than Google Play (see below).
  • Launch the game, and go to the "Preferences" screen, to restore the options, as they were reset to the defaults when you uninstalled the previous version.
  • Test the game.
  • Report about your experience here. Add screenshots when applicable. Note that all Android devices should be able to take screenshots, generally with a well-timed "Power+Volume down" simultaneous button press. A google search for "Take screenshots on <Insert your device brand and model here>" should give you directions.
  • Eventually, uninstall the alpha version, reinstall the Google Play version, and, if necessary, restore your saves (see below).
Backup and restore saves

Backup
  • Using the file manager, navigate to /sdcard/, which should be the root folder of the "Internal storage" or "SD Card" device.
  • If there is a folder named "andors-trail", you are at the right place. Check that this folder contains a "worldmap" directory and a bunch of savegameX files.
  • Create a copy, or a zip, of the whole "andors-trail" folder. You can save this somewhere else if you wish too (google drive or other cloud storage, your computer, whatever...).
Restore
  • Backup again with a different backup name, just to be sure.
  • Delete the "andors-trail" folder.
  • Unzip, or move and/or rename your backup so that the game can find the "andors-trail" folder and its content back to where it was.

Allow and disallow application side-loading (installation of arbitrary APK outside of Google Play)

Allowing installation temporarily.
  • [ On Nougat (7.1) and earlier ] Temporarily allow installation from unknown sources by ticking the box in Settings->Security->Unknown Sources.
  • [ On Oreo (8.0) ] You'll be prompted to grant application installation rights later.
Removing installation permission
  • [ On Nougat (7.1) and earlier ] Disallow installation from unknown sources by unticking the box in Settings->Security->Unknown Sources.
  • [ On Oreo (8.0) ] Go to Settings and search for "Install other apps". Select the app you used to install the alpha build, and disallow installations from this source. Next time you use it to install an APK, you will be prompted again.
Are you sure you want to give it a go?
Have you read and understood all the instructions above?
Can you click one more button?
Lvl: 78, XP: 8622632, Gold: 271542, RoLS: 1, ElyR: -, RoL: -, ChaR: 1, GoLF: 1, ShaF: 1, SRoV: 1, VSH: 1, WMC: 1, GoW: 1
HP: 71, AC: 301%, AD: 38-47, AP: 3, ECC: 50%, CM: 3.75, BC: 101%, DR: 2

Usirim
Posts: 147
Joined: Tue May 01, 2012 10:33 am
android_version: 6.0 - Marshmallow

Re: Public Alpha of the new UI

Post by Usirim » Thu Dec 14, 2017 5:31 am

Currently I'm level 16, and everything is great - only meat don't give food poisening. :D - duration (12) and factor (x2) is displayed within icon (great little gimmick :P )
Gameplay is much faster (I am using optimized drawing by default), maybe syncron movement of foes is catching eyes.
Translation in german is more complete (didn't look for not translatet text, I can't remember to notice non-german text)

With android 6.0 the old grafic issues (health bar for example) is gone, some menu elements needs more room on screen, filter option with inventar makes manual sorting obsolet (but there's room for perfectioning sort behavor :) )

Running around on early gameplay is so fast that I needed only 11 times to eat meat until now. From bed in Fallhaven to snake cave and back happens real fast - approx 3 min (~300 xp, -21 hp, 3 meat found & none used)

Maybe an issue: map don't start with Crossglenn, not with current location on first opening. Closing an reopening focus on current location.

So: why is it called Alpha? ;) ;) ;)
Usirim (v2.2):
Lvl: 200
XP: 145.569.369
Gold: 5.8M
RoLS: 17
ElyR: 9
RoL: 6
ChaR: 9
GoLF: 2
ShaF: 7
SRoV: 15
VSH: 7
WMC: 12
GoW: 6

Base values
HP: 1000
AC: 280
AD: 90
max AP: 10 (12)
BC: 180%
DR: 0
(Jun 2017)

User avatar
Zukero
Lead Developer
Posts: 1735
Joined: Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:56 am
android_version: 8.0

Re: Public Alpha of the new UI

Post by Zukero » Thu Dec 14, 2017 9:00 am

Thanks for the feedback.
Weird that you feel that the gameplay is faster. It isn't. Maybe the smooth movement and scrolling make you feel that way. Combat *can* feel faster, depending on the "Animation speed" preference.

The German translation should not feel more complete either, as debug builds do not include translated content (dialogues, item names...), and some new labels in English were introduced that have not been translated yet.

Agreed with the need for enhancements in the inventory filtering and sorting feature. That's planned.

For the worldmap centering issue, when you encounter it again, could you try to press the new "Recenter" button at the top right, and report whether it works or not? I tried hard to make it work better, more reliably, and on a wider range of devices. Irony is it worked flawlessly on every device I used for testing, except on my own everyday phone, where nothing worked. I never managed to recenter the worldmap on that phone.

What device are you testing on?
Lvl: 78, XP: 8622632, Gold: 271542, RoLS: 1, ElyR: -, RoL: -, ChaR: 1, GoLF: 1, ShaF: 1, SRoV: 1, VSH: 1, WMC: 1, GoW: 1
HP: 71, AC: 301%, AD: 38-47, AP: 3, ECC: 50%, CM: 3.75, BC: 101%, DR: 2

Usirim
Posts: 147
Joined: Tue May 01, 2012 10:33 am
android_version: 6.0 - Marshmallow

Re: Public Alpha of the new UI

Post by Usirim » Fri Dec 15, 2017 5:33 am

Zukero wrote:
Thu Dec 14, 2017 9:00 am
Thanks for the feedback.
Thanks for your work :D
It's great, even after al these years
Weird that you feel that the gameplay is faster. It isn't. Maybe the smooth movement and scrolling make you feel that way. Combat *can* feel faster, depending on the "Animation speed" preference.
my moto g5 is faster than the wiko robby with the alpha.
Comparision in the gargoyle cave - moving from right to left corner the alpha outruns the 0.7.1
So my conclusion: the alpha is faster :D :D :D
The German translation should not feel more complete either, as debug builds do not include translated content (dialogues, item names...), and some new labels in English were introduced that have not been translated yet.
It was the cleave-translation, which catched my eyes, wasn't it?
Agreed with the need for enhancements in the inventory filtering and sorting feature. That's planned.
Even now it is an enhancment. As I wrote, I don't sort manually any more :)
For the worldmap centering issue, when you encounter it again, could you try to press the new "Recenter" button at the top right, and report whether it works or not? I tried hard to make it work better, more reliably, and on a wider range of devices. Irony is it worked flawlessly on every device I used for testing, except on my own everyday phone, where nothing worked. I never managed to recenter the worldmap on that phone.
I don't use the map that often. But it seems that it works since the second time.
What device are you testing on?
Wiko Robby, Android 6.0, 5.5" with 1280x720, data sheet (german):
http://de.wikomobile.com/m1226-robby

I will give a try on Samsung Tab 2 7.0 with CyanogenMod this weekend - and I guess I will use old savegames.
Usirim (v2.2):
Lvl: 200
XP: 145.569.369
Gold: 5.8M
RoLS: 17
ElyR: 9
RoL: 6
ChaR: 9
GoLF: 2
ShaF: 7
SRoV: 15
VSH: 7
WMC: 12
GoW: 6

Base values
HP: 1000
AC: 280
AD: 90
max AP: 10 (12)
BC: 180%
DR: 0
(Jun 2017)

User avatar
Kashim
Posts: 109
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2016 8:40 pm
android_version: 6.0 - Marshmallow
Location: The Internet

Re: Public Alpha of the new UI

Post by Kashim » Fri Dec 15, 2017 5:05 pm

Does this build include all of the new content, or did you only specifically give a branch for the UI? I've been trying everything I can to stay away from the new content until it is done, so I can enjoy it to the fullest extent possible.
I am super psyched, and will get the new version installed in the next couple of days (when I find a few free minutes).

Also, when I see Alpha builds come out, it makes me really excited to think another release might be just around the corner!
I have too many characters to list them, so I'll just list my most important:
Template Flux
Lvl: 1 XP:56034
L&E: RoLS: 2 ElyR: 1 RoL: 2

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rijackson741
Posts: 2173
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2013 2:04 am
android_version: 9.0 - Pie
Location: Somewhere in Dhayavar

Re: Public Alpha of the new UI

Post by rijackson741 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 5:21 pm

There is only the UI.
Level: 64, XP: 4734786, HP: 196, AC: 246%, AD: 49-59, AP: 3, ECC: 25%, CM: 3, BC: 127%, DR: 2
Gold: 232355 | RoLS: 1, RoL: 1, GoW: 1
HH: 1, CS: 2, IF: 4, Ev: 3, Re: 2, WP:DA: 1, WP:1S: 1, AP:L: 1, FS:DW: 2, S:DW: 1
SR

User avatar
Zukero
Lead Developer
Posts: 1735
Joined: Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:56 am
android_version: 8.0

Re: Public Alpha of the new UI

Post by Zukero » Fri Dec 15, 2017 6:36 pm

There's a bit more than the UI (three quests that don't involve new areas, including a broken one, and some reworked maps). It's fairly easy to stay away from any spoiler. The only obvious thing you may discover is where the starting points of those quests are.
Lvl: 78, XP: 8622632, Gold: 271542, RoLS: 1, ElyR: -, RoL: -, ChaR: 1, GoLF: 1, ShaF: 1, SRoV: 1, VSH: 1, WMC: 1, GoW: 1
HP: 71, AC: 301%, AD: 38-47, AP: 3, ECC: 50%, CM: 3.75, BC: 101%, DR: 2

User avatar
rijackson741
Posts: 2173
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2013 2:04 am
android_version: 9.0 - Pie
Location: Somewhere in Dhayavar

Re: Public Alpha of the new UI

Post by rijackson741 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 7:03 pm

Oh. I didn't realize those were in there.
Level: 64, XP: 4734786, HP: 196, AC: 246%, AD: 49-59, AP: 3, ECC: 25%, CM: 3, BC: 127%, DR: 2
Gold: 232355 | RoLS: 1, RoL: 1, GoW: 1
HH: 1, CS: 2, IF: 4, Ev: 3, Re: 2, WP:DA: 1, WP:1S: 1, AP:L: 1, FS:DW: 2, S:DW: 1
SR

Miker
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:44 pm
android_version: 5.1 - Lolipop

Re: Public Alpha of the new UI

Post by Miker » Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:07 pm

Hey,

Just signed up here to post!?!

I like the UI, of course, who doesn't like good graphics?

But my bust on this is the save game incompatibility, I had this game, Lord maybe 2 or more years ago... And gave it up, new phones, and update on new versions, which the playstore one is the same one I had...

Back then I was broken about the N.E. areas weren't complete.... Now this bridge guards I wasn't strong enough to beat, and wasn't even sure if it was possible, honestly...

So I did all the other stuff including the Mountains, and what I call the swamps..

But around that time was phone upgrade, so really didn't bother, as I didn't want to waste all that time grinding, snake piut, town, snake pit, town, etc...

Ok now to the point, I downloaded your new AI, and I like it, but just a suggestion, make an app to convert the save files to make them compatible..... Even if you loose things...

I'm an old school rooter/flasher but unfortunately I have a GS5 unlocked from at&t with 5.1.1, so my bootloader is locked, or I'd solve that myself...

Anyway I'll play with your build, and note to the devs, you need to put out betas!! Years go by and really with all the grinding, it's not worth it, hell took me 2 years to come back, and nothing has changed...

Just my opinion...

Mike

User avatar
Zukero
Lead Developer
Posts: 1735
Joined: Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:56 am
android_version: 8.0

Re: Public Alpha of the new UI

Post by Zukero » Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:37 pm

Saves should be compatible all the way. I have an old save that must have been created with the first or second version of the game to hit Google play (android market at that time) on my Android 1.5 device. It works fine with this alpha.
Only saves made with a debug version are incompatible with release versions, and that's on purpose.

As for a beta, we're closer than ever, but not there yet. We really want to make the wait worth, and deliver a version with enough content. Subsequent versions will surely be more frequent. It's been almost 4 years now, so we want to make it count.
Lvl: 78, XP: 8622632, Gold: 271542, RoLS: 1, ElyR: -, RoL: -, ChaR: 1, GoLF: 1, ShaF: 1, SRoV: 1, VSH: 1, WMC: 1, GoW: 1
HP: 71, AC: 301%, AD: 38-47, AP: 3, ECC: 50%, CM: 3.75, BC: 101%, DR: 2

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