Beta 18: Error Reporting, Stability, Image Updates

Posted in EpicTable Development on April 11, 2012 at 1:02 am

After the long pull on beta 17, there were some important things that I wanted to get out quickly.  As a result, beta 18 is here already!

Below are some of the highlights of this release.  For a full list of the fixes and enhancements in this release, check out the what’s new pageJust give me the beta! If you just want the beta download, without all the discussion of what’s in it, go ahead and jump down to "How do I get the beta?"

Reveal Yourself:  Improved Error Reporting

ErrorReportEpicTable has always had an automated error reporting mechanism, but one of my frustrations has been that the error reports were a little too anonymous. 

Anonymity is fine, but prior to this release, you could not supply contact info or any details about what was happening when you encountered an error.   A lot of times, that was okay—there’d be a smoking gun in the error report and I’d find and fix the issue without needing any additional information.  Every now and then, though, I’d get reports where the error was down deep in the .NET Framework code, and it would have been really helpful to follow up with some questions.  Plus, if someone’s having a problem, I like to make contact and see what I can do to help.  I’ll jump on a Skype session with you and join your EpicTable game, or whatever helps—but if I don’t know who you are, I can’t do that. 

Now, with Beta 18, you have the option to provide a name and email address, as well as some descriptive text.  As always, you’re free to report issues anonymously, if you’d prefer.

Beware Guests Bearing Images:  Stability Fixes for Image Retrieval by the Host

I resolved an unusual image access error.  You may have seen it and then written it off, because it would normally occur only once for a given image and only if that image was added by a guest participant (i.e., not the host) and had to be fetched by the host.

Another unusual one also involved images fetched by the host.  This one could actually cause EpicTable to become unresponsive.


Background and Object Image Updates

MenuChangeImageOne of the most versatile features of EpicTable is the ability to put an image on the tabletop—any image—it doesn’t have to be a character token or a map or anything—just whatever you want.  I use it all the time for dungeon dressing or as an alternative to a handout.  

When you hit the image button, you’re prompted for an image to use:


It’s only when you want to change it that a couple bugs came into play. 

  1. If you changed the image of an object, that change wasn’t broadcast, so no one else saw it…which kind of takes the zing out of your changing that image of the peasant’s hearth into one of the throne room of Asmodeus. 
  2. If you edited an image used as a background or for an object on the tabletop, EpicTable would still show the original version of the file, even if you re-selected the image.

Happily, both those scenarios are taken care of in this release.


Let Go of My Token!

Changed select-on-duplicate to only do so when the duplication of an object was initiated by the local user.  It had been the case that duplicated objects were automatically selected for all participants.  However, this led to scenarios where different participants would “steal the selection” when they duplicated objects or added entirely objects to a tabletop.  This made it difficult for multiple participants to work effectively together on setup—you’d be moving something and suddenly drop it because the selection was stolen and given to another object.

Cleaning up Sticky Italics

There was an odd little bug that caused text objects on the map or tabletop to stay forever italicized once you changed their styleThis made everything put on the tabletop seem curiously enthusiastic and upbeat.  As of beta 18, you may now resume being dark and foreboding.

How do I get the beta?

Download the full EpicTable installer and run it. (No need to uninstall first.)

To those of you who have already installed the beta:  My apologies–the auto-updater won’t work for this release.  My goal is to distribute updates automatically, so you don’t have to visit this site to know that there are updates.  Sadly, the approach I’d been using for that has turned out to be less reliable and less flexible than I’d hoped.   I plan to replace it before the 1.0 release.  In the meantime, I’ll continue to distribute updates in installer form.

Thanks for your participation in the beta!

– John

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