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#1 2014-01-19 02:09:42

death_to_ice_cream_vans
Member
Registered: 2014-01-08
Posts: 22

Cheater: John Brett Johnson

I have a very simple house design (built with just my initial $2000) which involves about 15 parallel passageways protected by electric floors and sticking pressure switches. If you go down the wrong path, you're trapped there (unless of course you have water or a crowbar).

John Brett Johnson entered my house at about 00:05 AM on Sunday, January 19 (California time) and immediately picked the right passageway. I put this down to luck and decided to move the safe to prevent a repeat visit. He returned about ten minutes later and immediately picked the new correct passageway.

I don't know the maths behind statistics, but picking a 1/15 chance TWICE is very, very far-fetched. Does anyone else suspect this guy of cheating? Jason, are you able to check up on this?

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#2 2014-01-19 04:27:22

colorfusion
Member
Registered: 2013-04-02
Posts: 537

Re: Cheater: John Brett Johnson

The chance is under 0.5%. Possible, but pretty rare. Are you sure that no other accounts came in between the robberies to scout your house? And are you sure that nothing in your house gives away its location?

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#3 2014-01-19 06:56:45

death_to_ice_cream_vans
Member
Registered: 2014-01-08
Posts: 22

Re: Cheater: John Brett Johnson

Absolutely sure. Each passageway was made to look identical, with the exact same placement of every item.

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#4 2014-01-19 13:16:19

DethBringa
Member
Registered: 2014-01-16
Posts: 160

Re: Cheater: John Brett Johnson

I've had similar experiences with people just happening to make the right choice each time perfectly, even after rearranging my correct paths. I myself put it down to previous scouting (to learn the basic layout) followed by lucky choice.
I think a once off is luck, twice in a row with different correct choices is pretty unlikely, 3 times with different correct paths would indicate there's a problem somewhere.


If I vanish it's not due to a burglar shooting me as well as my wife while making his way to the vault....
I'm just a burst player.
tongue

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#5 2014-01-20 09:43:05

jasonrohrer
Administrator
Registered: 2013-04-01
Posts: 1,231

Re: Cheater: John Brett Johnson

Okay... as admin, I can watch old tapes.

The problem here is that your "dead end walls" are right behind the doors, where the "right" passage has no wall behind the door.

On a darker monitor, you can't tell the difference, but try amping your gamma and take a look (you can re-build two test passages like this to see what I mean).

The vis algorithm, for the sake of continuity, draws connected walls back behind things, even if they should not logically be visible (so that walls don't look "cut off" as they pass back through the soft edge of the shroud).

The solution here is to leave a 1-block "gap" behind each dead-end door (between the door and the dead end).  OR, if you don't have room for that, you can put a single concrete or metal block back there as the dead end.  Since it's not connected to the wooden walls, it won't be drawn behind the door.  They open the door, and BAM, concrete wall.  Kind of dramatic.

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#6 2014-01-20 09:48:44

jasonrohrer
Administrator
Registered: 2013-04-01
Posts: 1,231

Re: Cheater: John Brett Johnson

Here's an example:

http://castledraft.com/editor/xPAW6

On the top half, bright monitors can see the dead ends because of the way that connected walls get drawn under the shroud.

The bottom half shows various ways to deal with this (leaving a gap, or using a non-connected wall as the dead end).

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#7 2014-01-22 07:21:44

Ape
Member
Registered: 2014-01-22
Posts: 5

Re: Cheater: John Brett Johnson

I think this shadow behaviour needs a fix. There are two ways to do it.

1. Decide that the block behind the wall can be seen. This requires that you can see the tooltip when hovering the block just as you can do now with all the directly visible blocks. Also the block behind the wall should be quite visible, not very dark.

2. Decide that the block behind the wall can not be seen. This requires that the block behind the wall is completely black.

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#8 2014-01-22 09:21:27

jasonrohrer
Administrator
Registered: 2013-04-01
Posts: 1,231

Re: Cheater: John Brett Johnson

I've experimented with different things here over the past 10 months.

What we're up against are two conflicting requirements:

1.  That the game look really good.

2.  That visibility functions match what the player can see, logically.


I've tried various hard-edge shrouds, including blacking out invisible tiles in various ways.  It always looks really terrible.  The soft-edge shroud, with the mysterious look that it gives, is the visual hallmark of this game.  The screenshots always end up looking "retouched" because they have this lovely, organic black haze at their borders.  But the game actually looks that way.

The current system actually hides most things that are logically hard-unseeable.  You can't see a dog behind a wall, for example.  The dog will fade into view as you come around the corner.

However, walls are the one exception to this, because having a connected wall get "cut off" as it goes into the soft edge of the shroud looks pretty jarring.  You can see the other, connected part of the wall, so you KNOW that there is more wall back there.

Example:

.
AXA
BCB

If X is a door, and A, B, and C are all walls of the same type, what does the player know?  Well, they can clearly see A, and see that A is not a "stand-alone" wall, because A has a "connecting" edge on its back side.  That means they know that B is back there, so we must draw B for them.  But if we're already drawing B, and they can see it, then they can see that B connects to something else.  They can see that the B tiles are not "end points" in this connected wall.  So, the player can already deduce that C is there, just from being able to see A and B.  And though they can't logically see B, they know that it's there, because A must connect to something.  So, not drawing B would be strange.

We could draw a FALSE version of B back there... but how would the game engine chose what lie to tell?  We'd have to be able to know what trick the owner was intending to play.  So, we just draw B as it is, which means that we've given away information about C, so we might as well draw C as it is too.

In most cases, this doesn't tell you very much that you don't already know, and house builders can work around the rest of this system's shortcomings (like leaving a one-tile gap behind a dead-end door).  I figured that the real secrets are usually not structures, but what those structures contain.

If the VAULT was at C, you could not see it.  That's important.

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