Randomization bug - only in Vampires?


#1

Two years ago I had a lot of fun playing the first “Choice of” games (web browser version) until I stumbled upon a problem in “Choice of Vampires” that made me stop and wait for a bug fix. There was a point in the story with a random element: A line that affects my stats, that would change every time I hit the stats button and then return to the story. (Just pressing F5 on the story screen also worked.)

So basically checking my stats would change my stats. For me this was a deal breaker. I reported the bug and was told they would fix it when they’re able, as it’s not an easy one to fix. I tried it a couple of times since then, and again today, and I found the bug is still in.

My question is: Was this random element in Vampires an exception? Can I play the other games, that were added to the site later, without worrying about encountering the same problem again?


#2

I think the bug is the following:
http://choicescriptdev.wikia.com/wiki/Rand - The section Known *rand-related Bug & Workaround
As for other newer games, I’m not sure about that; I never checked my stats in the middle of stat-changing.


#3

I heard about this a while back, I do believe it’s rather hard to fix as what basically happens is:

Your current page (code and all) is REPLACED when you go to the stats screen and RELOADED when you come out of it, this means all the code is rerun too, usually this isn’t an issue and you’d never notice anything - as it’d look exactly the same as last time. As soon as you add randomization of any sort into that, naturally a rerun of the code will produce different results.

We can’t tell the game not to rerun the code, or the page wouldn’t be displayed properly. The only way you could really get around this is to “store” the contents and layout of a page and re-present it, or to load the stats screen over the old scene, without replacing it.

The latter of those likely wouldn’t work due to the nature of the interpreter, it’s very much designed to only have one loaded/active scene at a time.

This means the former is the only real solution, which as you might imagine, wouldn’t be an easy fix. I think since then they’ve refrained from using the rand command (don’t hold me to that though).

Note: If you get your random stat, click ‘next’ or make a following a choice and load another scene, it will then no longer rerandomize, it’ll only do this if you check your stats the very scene after receiving it - so it can be avoided if you postpone checking what you got for a page.

It’s not a game breaking bug, just a little inconvenient.


#4

Thanks for your responses. You’re suggesting not to check the stats on a page where there’s a random element. Maybe I’m missing something here, but how can I tell if there’s a random element on a page or not? To me as a player it usually isn’t obvious where a stat change is happening until I check the stats screen. That’s why I used to check it at every opportunity. And even if the clues in the text are obvious, I can’t know if the change is a consequence of my choices and it’s safe to check the stats. I could try hitting F5 a few times on every page in order to check if anything changes, but I suspect the author isn’t even required to change the text if he wants a random stat to change.

If you can’t prevent the story pages from rerunning the randomization code after returning from the stats page, maybe you could automatically disable the stats button on pages with random elements, that would help too, IMO.

I’m still interested in hearing from other players, if they encountered the issue in any of the other games too (assuming there are players that are as overly sensitive about the issue as I am… :wink: )


#5

It’s only used 3x in the entire game, as far as I can see, two times near the very beginning in relation to random traits and refinement, and one at the very end on the last time skip to do with Heresy.

I really wouldn’t let those 3 lines of code ruin the game for you… :confused:
It’s never bothered me (and most other players afaik).


#6

Unnatural has that bug, but I like it as it helps me >:)


#7

I tend to write my *rand a page or two before needing to be called so when you check your stats you won’t recall the *rand again going back to the scene.


#8

@SengokuKronos

Where? I thought I sorted that out.


#9

T_T darn it

The e-mail scene.


#10

@CJW: Thanks, that’s very useful info. :slight_smile: Because I had no way of knowing if it would be happening 3 times or 30 times. You’re right, 3 times really isn’t so bad and I shouldn’t let that ruin the game for me.


#11

@bunghead Glad to hear it :slight_smile: