Dear Ashley - A big giant thanks

  • Ashley

    "Set minimum framerate" is a godsend.

    I literally have a couple projects I had to shelve because, with frame skipping, the potential for unreliable collisions was too great, and because I specifically wanted these games to slow down when things got crazy, instead of skipping frames.

    Basically, I realized I would have to completely bypass most of the internal and third party plugins I normally used, and maintain my own modified versions that would timescale the way I wanted.

    Now I can revisit those projects and use all my usual plugins and behaviors...by just changing a project property.

    So...thanks, sincerely, for finally letting us do this.

  • I am crazy happy about this too, thanks Ashley!

  • Yes thanks! Ashley

    It's similiar to Super Nintendo, when you play Super Mario World, there a screen appear a lot of sprites then start slow motion, no freezes!

  • Were these games really running at say 20 FPS? Are they still playable like that?

  • thanks Ashley Im testing games in win 10 and Edge, its playable

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  • Ashley No, not mine. The reason I'm pumped is it gives me more opportunity to launch my game on older devices without the worry of collisions working improperly. Since my game is rather fast paced, frame skips can cause the character to pass through some walls (not an issue on what say an iPhone 5s and above, but on the iphone 5 it could happen)

    It's really something I'm more excited about to ensure a better user experience for users with slightly lower end hardware, so thank you.

  • It was btw. quite common on old arcade machines to just slow everything down instead of skipping.. some shooters even used this as a feature (comparable to the "high precision movement" that some of the contemporary ones allow), if there was too much going on (bossfights or boss blowups) the clock would just run slower.

  • Ashley

    Specifically, I was working on a game inspired by the Bangai-O series by Treasure. Having way too much stuff exploding all at once was always a Treasure trademark, as was massive slowdown, sometimes into the single digits. Oddly, this actually served to modulate the difficulty of such games by slowing down more chaotic scenes.

    For my game, things generally stayed at 60fps; at times, though, it would reach as low as 15-20fps, usually for brief periods, but sometimes for up to 30 seconds or so. Mainly due to a custom collision system that involved, at times, a few thousand onscreen actors, sophisticated projectiles with the ability to home and reflect off surfaces, and partially destructible tilemap-based levels.

    For some reason, slowdown handled this way always felt really awesome, as opposed to the awful jerkiness of frame-skipping, which always reminded me of trying to watch youtube on a crappy connection.

    Aside from asthetics, as this game was as much a puzzle game as an action game, having unreliable collisions was simply not an option.

    I still think frame-skip is better for typical games that are trying to maintain a constant framerate, with only brief small dips. However, for games that expect -- or even aim -- to produce sequences of prolonged slowdown, I think a fixed timestep is a more elegant solution.

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