New Year's Fireworks
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Phantasy Star Online
Archive for 2012
Monday, December 24th, 2012
Well, it is the end of another year already. It’s hard to believe that this is the fourth Christmas that Sylverant has been around…
There’s really no news in regard to Sylverant lately, as I’ve been quite busy with real life. There’s been a few changes in the past few months, but nothing really Earth-shattering or anything like that. Perhaps that’s a good thing — everything’s relatively stable and that is actually quite nice from an administration standpoint.
I don’t know that I’ll have much time to work on things in the next few months as well. I’ll actually be teaching the course Principles of Operating Systems at a local university this upcoming spring semester, which is quite a change compared to what I have been doing lately (I’ve been the teaching assistant for that same course for the past few semesters). In addition, I’ll be continuing work on my Master’s Degree thesis.
Well, I wish everyone a Merry Christmas (or just a happy holiday season in general, if you’re not into celebrating Christmas) and a Happy New Year after that.
Monday, October 29th, 2012
So, I’m sure that some people here on Sylverant have noticed the fact that I haven’t been around much lately. Well, I haven’t forgotten about Sylverant, but I have been quite busy lately with “real life”. As you may know, I am a graduate student in Computer Science, and lately things related to that have been taking up quite a bit of my time. Anyway, as was said a while back on my Twitter, I’m in a bit of a self-imposed hiatus from things to try to work more on my degree. Sylverant isn’t going anywhere any time soon, and everything seems relatively stable (which is a very good thing for when you’re on hiatus).
Also, on the note of real life happenings, right now we’re getting pretty battered here with wind and rain from Hurricane Sandy. So far everything’s mostly OK, but I figured I’d note this anyway. Wish us luck in getting through that. Oh, and before anyone worries about it, Sylverant isn’t hosted anywhere in Sandy’s path, so there shouldn’t be any interruptions here.
We made it through the storm just fine.
Sunday, September 9th, 2012
Well, its that day of the year again — September the 9th. Today marks the 13th Anniversary of the Dreamcast’s release in the United States as well as the 3rd Anniversary of Sylverant (or at least its first public appearance).
I may yet get a chance to play a bit of PSO tonight, so if I do, hopefully I’ll see some people online. 😉
Friday, August 10th, 2012
It is that time of the year again. Namely, the time when I go away for my yearly vacation. Not that I think anyone should really be concerned, but I figured I’d let everyone know.
I’ll be back on the 18th.
Saturday, July 28th, 2012
I’m doing a small test of some new functionality on Iselia. If you notice anything odd (specifically being disconnected when hitting/killing an enemy), please let me know. You can do so by commenting on this post with your guildcard number and the time you got disconnected (please either put the time as UTC or note your timezone in your post).
Thursday, June 28th, 2012
Well, as you might have noticed from the Twitter feed (as well as from other places), I’ve been on a bit of a hiatus the past month and a half or so. This was due to many different situations, and was planned in advance of the drama that unfolded over the server rules (sorry to disappoint anyone who thought that the drama there scared me away or something).
Anyway, I’m still pretty much on hiatus from Sylverant, but I did decide to use a bit of my free time the past few days to work on a few things. So, I figured a status update is in order (especially since the last one was back in April). So, without further ado, here’s what’s changed since the last “monthly” update:
- Warning cleanup in the code.
- Added code for parsing the ItemPT.afs and ItemPT.gsl files for PSOv2 and the later versions (respectively). Thanks to Lee for lots of information about the format of these files!
- Fixed a few issues that could cause segfaults in the server code.
- Don’t show Blue Burst games to Gamecube clients.
- Added code for parsing the map data from PSOv2 (in addition to the Blue Burst parsing that was already in the code).
- When a client leaves a team, send them back to the lobby they came from, as long as its not full.
- Added code for parsing the ItemPMT.prs files from PSOv2 (later versions are not supported currently). Thanks to Lee for some valuable information on the subject!
- Fixed a potential crash for PSOPC clients when searching for someone by guildcard or choice search when they are in a team that has a name that is of max length.
- Made the results for guild card searches have all the same information they did on Sega’s server.
- Fixed an issue with /minlvl and /maxlvl where they were off by one.
- Added code to the random number generation stuff to support multiple streams of random numbers (one per thread).
- Added a –check-config option to ship_server to make it so you can check the validity of a configuration file without actually starting the ship server.
- Added in parsing for the ItemRT.afs file from PSOv2 (once again, later versions aren’t supported right now, although this shouldn’t be much of an issue).
- Fixed a few minor issues in the map parsing code for v2 and bb.
- Track when clients hit a monster on v2.
- Prevent a potential segfault if map enemy data is not loaded for a team.
- Added support for full server-side drops on PSOv1, PSOv2, and PSOPC (and partial support for the other versions).
- Added the /sdrops command to enable server-side drops.
Most of these are fairly boring updates, except the last two. These probably need a bit of explanation, which will come more fully later on. For a brief explanation, continue on (with the continue reading link, or if you’re already on the full story by reading below).
Sunday, May 6th, 2012
Due to various situations that have arisen, the administrators of the Three Ships of the Sylverant system have decided on a set of global rules across all Ships. Please read the rules at the forums. Your continued use of the Sylverant PSO Server indicates your acceptance of these rules.
I’ll post them on this site as well at some point, but its rather late for me right now to do it. 😉
Thursday, April 12th, 2012
If I haven’t specifically asked you to help me test stuff on the server, please don’t even try to connect with Blue Burst. Most things don’t work, and I’d rather not have people trying to play and managing to corrupt characters and whatnot else (especially when odd bugs happen like the one I just fixed in r605 and other people’s character data is at risk).
Also, it appears that someone gave out one of my testing programs with regard to Blue Burst without my permission. I’m extremely upset that someone would do that, and it annoys me greatly. If I can’t even trust the few people that I thought I could, then why should I even bother doing this stuff in the first place?
When Blue Burst support is ready, I’ll be happy to have people playing on the server. Until then, please don’t unless I’ve specifically asked you to!
Finally, don’t ask when Blue Burst support will be ready. The answer is: when it is ready. Will it be any time soon? Probably not. Asking will only prolong how long it will take. Blue Burst support isn’t a high priority for me at the moment, when compared to other stuff I should be working on.
To the person who actually reported the issue that I fixed in r605, I do thank you for doing so.
Sunday, April 8th, 2012
To anyone who celebrates it, Happy Easter. To anyone else Happy Zombie Jesus day? 😛
Anyway, here’s a brief “monthly” update, since I haven’t done a real one in a while. I’ve still not had a whole lot of time to work on Sylverant lately, but there have been a few revisions along the way since the last sorta-update. Here’s what’s changed since the last real monthly update, way back in January:
- Allow the ship configuration XML to specify the ship’s address and the shipgate’s address by a FQDN instead of an IP address.
- Add some configuration parameters to the ship configuration for Blue Burst parameter and map enemy data.
- Checked in a few changes to the PSO Patcher that for some reason slipped through the cracks (stuff that’s actually completely unrelated to PSO).
- Added parsing/use of the Blue Burst map enemy data, which makes killing enemies actually give experience. No drops are done yet.
- Fix an issue with the Word Select parsing when dealing with messages about Meseta and item quantities.
- Send blank C-Rank data about V1 and BB clients to V2/PC/GC, which fixes the odd issue with V1 players appearing to have a really high C-Rank.
- Fix an issue with the experience calculation on Blue Burst for players who hit an enemy, but don’t kill it.
- Fix an issue with the enemy hit subcommand on Blue Burst not being sent along to clients.
- Fix an issue with joining a game on Blue Burst.
- Cleaned up some issues reported by Valgrind’s memcheck tool.
- Fix the play timer on Blue Burst.
As you can see, its mostly a bunch of small things (and a few big things) regarding Blue Burst. This is kinda forcing me to actually implement some backend stuff for some of the features for other versions that I’d like to do at some point, so its definitely not a bad thing for everyone who can play on Sylverant. Hopefully, we’ll start seeing the fruits of some of that for V1/V2/PC sometime soon. 🙂
Oh, and before anyone asks, no, I’m not giving instructions on how to play Blue Burst on Sylverant just yet. Its still not really all that useful, since there’s still a LOT missing (enemy/box drops, rare enemies, quests, team support, etc), so I’d rather not open up that can of worms yet. I may look for some people to help test at some point (there have been a few people who have offered already), but right now I think I’m fine with what I have.
Sunday, April 1st, 2012
EDIT (at the end of April Fools’ Day):
At the request of Aleron Ives, Sylverant now has a new motto: “The Happy PSO Server”. Note, this is not a joke. 😛