Remix Polish Update, Huge Performance Fix

[small update: new double backflip in now, mouse is mostly fixed and back in, just needs some new animations]

Hey guys, I’m trying to finish the Remix soon as I can, so I’m afraid you’ll only be getting boring updates until that’s out.

Got a few new animations and features in this build, here’s a boring list!

– new backflip animation
– new hurt animation
– new get up animation
– new heavy land to run animation

More useful is the interface polish: an actual pause (click or space), volume slider, fullscreen button, hide UI (for screenshots I guess?), but the interface itself isn’t final yet. Some feedback on the level load progress there so you’re not just looking at debug text or a white screen, way better!

I did a polish pass on the levels in the alpha, moving blocks should be behaving properly now, please hammer away and tell me if there’s anything new acting up!

Performance Fix / Flash Ranting

So I was going to do an update post a few days ago but ran into a nasty, soul crushing bug in Flash. I was getting a huge CPU spike for doing nothing but turning around repeatedly! I’m still not exactly sure what was causing it, but here’s as much as I can figure out:

Fancy Pants Man has a big timeline with a huge amount of animations on it (nothing compared to World 3’s, but still more than usual I’m sure). It seemed like whenever you changed animations, every single animation on the timeline that it was skipping over was loading up and being processed, every single time, until garbage collection kicked in and wiped them clean. If you turned around repeatedly, that would cause the giant walking clip and all the nested animations there (walking legs, then either walk, pencil sheathing, pencil carrying, or landing torso) to load up over and over and over again. So apparently Flash can’t navigate timelines properly (you had one job, Flash!), and I can’t find anything about this online because I’m convinced that I’m the last developer alive who actually uses Flash like it’s Flash.

Anyway, to get around it, I just load the animations as their needed, and disable them instead of destroying them on animation switch. Even with all the animations loaded at once, CPU and memory usage are both lower than they were before. I had to change how some of the player loading code works, which caused a huge amount of bugs yesterday, so sorry about that!

Everything looks like it’s solid now, which is way more excited than it sounds. Before, after a few levels, the CPU usage would pile up and the game would come to a crawl until I reloaded the level and forced garbage collect to kick in. Had the game running for an hour or so yesterday and it remained at 60 the entire time (with some stuttering, but meh).

If you’re still getting poor performance, try lowering the quality to medium (but not low, that messes with the ground collision) for now, but I’ll have some options to turn down other settings, right now it’s running with basically maximum image quality (which is probably a huge no no in Flash, lawlz).

Oh, right, I also tried some new animation caching for the smoke dust puff, though Flash can’t rotate bitmaps to save it’s life, so it looks pretty terrible. Not sure if it even makes much of a different in the browser, but I’ll play around with it.

Have At It!

If you want to help, please just play through a few times and let me know if performance stays solid. If you want to go through and look for any remaining bugs in single player in the alpha, that would help me out a ton, I’m trying to get the first few levels ‘release worthy’ as far as bugs and polish goes.

10 Comments

  1. squiggleinator3000

    OMGOMGOMG!!!!! awsumnessssss!!!! The performance is MUCH better!!!!!!!! By the way that land to run animation 😯 😯 *mindblown* !!

  2. dat fancy swager

    Finally I change my username,Anyways nice new animation for fancypants however flash seems to be taking 100 percent of my CPU.I kinda hope that world 4 or the remake of world 1 won’t hog my CPU like world 3 did,It almost made it unplayable cuz it was soooooo s l o w.(oh yea this is super fancypants I hated that name.)

    • Brad

      Well first off, the more CPU the game is taking up, the smoother it’s going to play. The new engine scales between 15 and 60 fps, I might add an option for locking the game to 30 fps after launch, though.

      How does it play, though? The AS3 engine should be way more efficient than the old one, though World 3 and 4 will take up more CPU since they have more backgrounds than the Remix.

      Is there a problem with the game running at 100% CPU usage? You’re not web browsing while playing the game, are you? haha.

      Oh, right, dropping the quality down to medium should lower CPU by 10 – 20 percent. I’m also smoothing the foreground bitmaps, should have an option to turn that off eventually also.

      • dat fancy swager

        The gaming feel of the AS3 is where it should be however I’ve been noticing some CPU spike when I play. Every time It hits 100 percent that’s when the frames start skipping or just starts to slows down. But at least that’s only when i start playing it (once it loads up) doesn’t really happen that often. But now come to think of it, It could be the web browser that I’m using. (i did some testing of the web browsers and here are the result.)

        Google Chrome – AWFUL
        Firefox – NOT BAD
        Safari – pretty good (weird):?
        Opera – not bad better than Firefox
        IE – 😆 don’t make me laugh (Didn’t even bother)
        Oh, Just in case if you are wondering what pc am using its Windose xp 64 bit. (yea yea i know its old OK i wish i can upgrade.) 🙄

Leave a Reply