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On Build Stability Issues

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Hey all! I just wanted to write a little about the recent issues with the main build we've had. We really apologize its taken so long to get it finalized, it's been a tough one for several reasons. It's bled out into the main release version, which has caused wider issues with more players outside the I Will Backup My Save bubble. So sincerest apologies for that too.


Just to fill you in, the main reasons for the rather messy build 38 release are as follows along with how we plan to address these issues so it doesn't repeat in future:


1) Vehicles - It turns out having two seperate branches of the game released to the public at the same time, both independently updated, was a mistake. While the feedback for the vehicle branch has been invaluable, it's also added a massive layer of complication to subsequent releases, infinitely more complex code merges, maintainence and organization in general.


We've learnt our lesson here and in future we'll be changing how we organize releases significantly in terms of code and behind the scenes. The main difference being in future when we have long standing features in development, for example the animations, if possible we'll try and merge them into the main codebase as soon as possible, with some kind of switch to disable them until they're ready( to those going woop! hackable animation system, we'd also leave out the data files until they are ready too :P) - This should mean that we can easily handle two seperate public branches, for example a public animation test, without all the problems we've had.


2) Team size - we've grown significantly in size over the past year, and while this has led to a massive increase in man hours of code being done for the game, our existing organizational systems for handling builds and the code branches wasn't really cut out for so many coders throwing their code into it, and this has led to a few complications that has caused the stability of the last build to suffer.


In light of this we've been spending significant time (with the help of zomboid cohorts BitBaboon) researching and implementing a robust and fancy build system, along with revamping how we organize things code and developerwise to better organize the bigger team we have now. It's still in the latter stages of setting up, but we'll have automatic compiling from the code repositories, as well as automatic construction of builds, along with automatic testing, old save file testing and the like, as well as automatic uploading to a steam branch. This should not only cut down on the potential for build breaking save bugs and the like, but also allow the versions to be updated by any developer on the game, as well as facilitate instant updates for our testers, and stuff like auto mailer sending mails to anyone who has broken the code. With all this in place we should have a much easier job during build 39 and finishing off the vehicles.


We're also looking into bringing someone onto the team with commercial QA experience as a dedicated QA tester, to run through systems between each build and the like, but this may take a while to find the right candidate.


In addition, we've discovered a dangerous situation which has lead to the corruption of saves based on items changing types between versions. This has prompted a decision to improve how items are stored in the saves, to ensure this will never occur again. We apologize for anyone who has suffered corrupt saves due to the issue. Please look for backups within your save folder, we'll do what we can to resolve but even if we fail to fix all broken saves, we'll ensure this problem will not occur again.


Thanks for your patience, if it were just IWBUMs it wouldn't be so much of an issue, but since there have been issues out there in the general population thought I should stop in with both an apology, explaination as well as information on how we're addressing the issues.






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1 minute ago, Popstopic said:

Ohh come on. Am i going to be able to ride cars before christmas or what? I love this game so muchhhhh!!!! PLS Do it fast i am beging you!!

As of right now you can go into their test build and use cars, the next build will have cars in them on the public release. The only reason they don't have cars in right now is because they had two separate branches of the game, and whenever they combined them for the update it caused an earthquake of bugs and other coding errors. Build 39 we gettin' those cars! Can I start a hype train in here!

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