Next up: World upgrade

As you have seen the 2D world maps have a lot of black areas. Those are there since the current version of the map renderer cannot process pre-1.13 files. I am working now to update those areas. This requires that we first of all upgrade the “mint” maps that we use to reset lots but then also to upgrade the maps people actively play on. Visiting a location in-came also fixes the issue but it’s of course time-consuming.

The automatic upgrade process also takes a lot of time, even for the kingdom it takes several hours. The automatic upgrade can currently be done only via one method: Start the server with a –forceUpgrade option and it will then go through all maps and update them before the server starts up. This is crazy since it will also update also all the maps that are never being rendered in the 2D maps such as the darklands. It would take days to finish that one and the server would be down until then.

So I need to do it one by one on a separate machine by downloading first the mint areas to my PC at home (I have the backups there, so no big issue), create a temp server, add all the worlds to it, run the update and re-upload the worlds then to the minecraft server.

Then the maps we play on need to be updated. Probably I will just reset all empty lots so those are then replaced with the 1.13 version mint files. Then only areas that are occupied but have not been visited since 1.13 need to be upgraded and that I can then do by either visiting the areas or closing down the world for a while and running the upgrade on them.

Let’s see how it goes, I will let you know about the progress.

Item Bug fixed – hopefully

I have been working the last 2 days to fix the item bug. Generally I think the biggest issues are fixed.Please try out whatever you can (deposit/store/things that broke before) and let me know if anything is not working as expected. If you are interested in the details, here is a summary of the work done:

First of all, there was a longstanding issue regarding compiling the websend plugin (the plugin that runs all custom commands for us). I always had to include all dependencies into the file which was overkill. I know learned how to do that properly and now the file is 1.6MB large instead of 60 😀

Second of all the conversion of extra data in items (such as enchantments) was always handled in a very 1:1 way in websend. It assumed to know all data that could exist and iterated it to pass it on to our server. This broke already some version ago when a lot more data was added (books etc) so we included a library called PowerNBT (nbt is the data format introduced then) to read the data and parse it for processing. The hope was to pass whatever data there is so we don’t need to worry when there is new stuff. Unfortunately, PowerNBT was abandoned and caused weird glitches in 1.12 already where under certain circumstances the commands broke. This would then crash the server and I had to restart it (see forum posts about this one).

With 1.14, the server would finally not crash anymore but only a specific command would fail. This allowed us to debug it much better and we found out that only specific items in the inventory would break things. So I managed to replace PowerNBT completely yesterday and get the additional data for items in a proper format from minecraft directly and pass it via websend to the system. Yay! One more outdated plugin gone. More long-term stability secured.

The issue with NBT data however is that it’s a Minecraft specific format that other programs cannot read. It had to be adjusted so I can work with it. This already was programmed, but the new way how I got the data out of minecraft was again slightly different. So I had to change the way we fix/process the data in my server code as well. This was done yesterday night and today and now hopefully everything is working.

The only issue is that we have now still a lot of legacy code around. I managed to coax the new system to look like the old system so that we can get rid of the bug ASAP. That does not mean however it’s the best way. I should ideally make sure that the whole system accepts and uses the new way as if it was intended like that instead. So, more work ahead of me.

Server Crashed, issue found & fixed

Hey guys, sorry for the downtime, the server crashed as it tried to generate a new chunk in the skylands. The Skylands generator is from 2012… and does not have all the expected modules that are needed and made the server crash.

I now removed the custom generators in flatlands and skylnands which should solve that problem. Since the Skylands as the flatlands are bordered anyhow, not being able to generate custom world chunks only means that chunks beyond the border will not be matching the look of the world.

Otherwise everything will be fine.

Bug #1 killed!

So I managed to kill the biggest bug, the Shield/shulker issue killing the commands from the system. Please help me verify this by doing the following:

Take enchanted shields & shulker boxes into the inventory and relogin. Test if commands like /home are working. If yes, the issue is fixed. If not, let me know in the comments.

On top of that, in the process of killing this bug, I found out a way how to get rid of a dependency in the code of Websend (which is running all our commands) which will make our live much easier in terms of keeping the server up to date for future versions.

So please let me know if you still run into problems of the commands not working.

1.14.4 Bug hunt!

Dear all,

we have now upgraded to 1.14.4 but there are still bugs around. I would like to ask you to try out everything on the server and let me know what does not work.

Specially, I know that there is still a bug somewhere with inventories. There are some inventory issues where some item combinations are causing commands to malfunction for the user. So if commands stop working for you, please do the following:

  1. Check if others have the same issue, if commands crashed for the whole server. If so, please send me a message.
  2. If it’s only for you, please empty all your inventory into a box and try some commands, relogin.
  3. If commands start working for you again, please leave the chest with your inventory as-is and send me a message with the coordinates. I will then try to replicate the issue and fix it. You’ll get your stuff back later.

1.14.4 is live! (mostly)

so 1.14.4 is online, and seems to be working fine.

What does NOT work is shop/deposit for the new blocks. You can put them in but cannot get them out. So please do not try. I will do my best to fix this tomorrow.

Please report here if you find anything else that does not work, thanks!

1.14.4 progress

I have yesterday managed to run a test server of 14.4 and upgrade websend to work with that version. So we are on a good path to be able to upgrade. I will test additional plugins today to make sure we have core functionality before upgrading the server itself.

/find command fixed

I have fixed the /find command. It should now output reliable results. Please let me know if there are issues.

Please note that enchanted stuff along with potions etc are not yet reliable. I will have to spend some more time to work on those.

1.14 Update information

Hey everyone!

given that we just upgraded the darklands to 1.13 and as there are no significant upgrades in the world generation, I have decided that there will be no temporary 1.14 server. We will upgrade the main server as soon as technically possible (as usual).

Please be patient until the first stable 1.14 spigot builds are out.

Thanks!

Uncovery

1.14 status

Hey all, I am right now on vacation until Monday so there will be nothing happening in terms of the 1.14 update information until then.

Once I am back home, I’ll take a look at the situation and update news then. Until then, the server is running 1.13.

Thanks for your patience!

Uncovery

Full item icons!

I have done some research now on the item icons and found a nice way to get a 99.5% full set of all block and item icons. I am using the update item name page of the wiki and parse the data to get all the icons from there.

So the shop manager now has a full list of all icons. Yay!

Item data issue

As you remember, we had, in the past, often the issue that new blocks being added to incoming minecraft versions and I used to create online Excel sheets for people to help me fill in the data.

Since 1.13, I had the hope that a new project that tries to get this data straight out of the minecraft files would solve this issue. While this project made it easier to get the current item names and their proper names, the other information given is often incomplete or plain wrong. For example, there is no data about which items are creative-only, the stack size is wrong for many items, and we have the issue that there are “items” and “blocks”, blocks become items when you mine them etc. While I have been submitting bug reports, the issues have not been fixed over the last months and we are close to being forced to go back to a manual system.

What are the consequences of this?

  • We cannot give out “random items” in the lottery since we would have to curate a massive list of items that should be available to make sure you don’t get something you should not.
  • Deposit withdrawals are a risk if you accidentally withdraw something in a quantity that does not fit into your inventory. This only affects stuff that stacks less than 64 items, but this still can be tricky since the rest just drops to the floor. You can only hope you’re not standing near lava.
  • Shop/deposit display might be broken

So here are the options:

  • We keep everything as it is and just live with it – no work, all the hassle
  • Someone who has the time and java knowledge gets involved in the above and helps fix it – this is the most sustainable way. No idea how complex.
  • We dump the current system and move to excel files again – some hours of work now, again for every version. I need to create the excel, ask & educate people how to use it and then convert the data for use in-game
  • We create a new system that let’s us crowdsource the information via a better interface. Changes would be live more or less immediately – lots of work now, then only small incremental stuff going forward. Ideally someone with PHP knowledge would help me here.

So this is just and FYI update. If you like to get involved, let me know.

Lottery issue with illegal items

Dear all,

there has been a bug in the lottery. It has been giving out items that are normally not available in the game. Those items might be mob eggs or other non-survival play items & blocks.

If you have received such an item, please destroy it ASAP. I have for now disabled the “random item” lottery winnings until I find a sustainable fix for this.

1.13 lot reset process: Step 1 done

So as you might have noticed from the 2D map, we now have a new empire. All empty lots have been reset and now have full 1.13 features, ores and biomes. This includes the by now quite dated granite etc, but also underwater features such as seaweed, sunken ships and floating icebergs.

This also means that anyone who has an empire lot has now the unique opportunity to go an reset or abandon their empire lots and start from scratch with the help of the lot manager.

But we did not only do it for the beauty of it all, there is another reason for this: Our mapping programs are all unable to deal with pre-1.13 worlds. That means that every time a lot resets, those lots become black spots on the world. And that is not very nice for people who try to get a new one. While there is a workaround for this (load the “mint” worlds into the game and visit every single chunk), it’s a hassle. We’d rather review how the by now very dated maps would look like in the new format and upgrade them all. For some worlds that does not matter (e.g. flatlands), but for others this might be a game changer (e.g. the kingdom).

So what I am working on right now is to re-create all the worlds with 1.13 tech and looking where the differences are so big that we should not upgrade them. As a first step, I took a look at the kingdom, and unfortunately, despite using the same seed, it would look completely different in 1.13. The current one is using 1.3.1 version generation, too old. So upgrading here is not an option. One option here is to create another world like the kingdom with 1.13 tech as an optional environment.

I will update you all once we have some more info.

1.13 Lot reset process – to be repeated

There was an issue with the lot reset process. This affected all the empty lots I wanted to reset but also all the resets that have been scheduled by users.

If you want to have your lot reset to 1.13, please schedule it in the lot manager again now, it will happen then at the next restart.

thanks!

Empire Renewal!

ATTENTION! IMPORTANT: I always get panicky mails/questions from users who don’t read the blog after this type of posts: I always get asked if their lot will be reset. It won’t! We NEVER reset occupied lots. PLEASE tell that when people ask you in-game.

As you know from previous posts, I have been investigating a possible reset of the empty lots in the empire to the latest world generation method. The original purpose was to get all the current types of granite and other natural resources into the empire. Another issue that popped up now is that the 2D map cannot process the data of the old empire and every lot reset creates black areas in the 2D map until someone goes to that location.

For this to happen, I needed to make sure that the world generation from 1.13 does not look completely different than 1.9 and before (when we created the empire). I now tested that and can confirm that there are no major differences on the 2D map. Most visual differences is that there will be ice in 2 of the oceans that we have and some of the waterways will have slightly different outlines. Trees are also not in the exact same location. Otherwise, it seems to be pretty much as expected.

This means that I will replace the “mint” world that we use to reset the empire with a new version that was created after the release of 1.13, and then I will manually reset all empty lots. There is a chance that if you had a tunnel/mineshaft that enabled you to walk into a neighboring empty lot, it will be gone. There is also a high chance that your trees that overlap into neighboring empty lots will be cut off. The impacts should be minimal however.

2D Map issues resolved!

I managed now to resolve the 2D map issues and all maps should display correctly now.

If there are black areas in the map, it’s because the place has pre-1.9 version files. This can have 2 reasons:

  1. The area has not been visited since we upgraded to 1.13
  2. The area has been reset recently. This is usually the case if the area is exactly along lot lines. Our “mint” maps that we use to copy regions from are pre-1.9.

In both cases, this can be resolved by visiting the area and waiting until the next reset when the maps are being updated. I will now work on 1.13 version maps to use for the reset so we don’t have to play catch-up every time a lot is reset.

Thanks for all your patience as this took quite some time to be resolved.