First play with Ship Spinning, Fonts and the new Cyno effects

CCP have released another DEV Blog

They have made some of their most recent proposed changes available on Singularity.  My test client was up to date a day or two ago – these latest changes generated a patch file of around 1.3GB in size.  They have also updated the character data, which had previously been more than a month old.

It is by no means polished, or especially stable – I suffered multiple crashes and plenty of fields and icons were labeled with [no resource] and [no label] text.  It is however a start.

It was not immediately obvious on how to reach the “ship spinning” option.  You basically go to your ship hologram (either on the observation deck or in front of your couch) and select “Enter Ship Hangar”.

The end result is pretty much what we lost with Incarna’s release.

You are given an icon down near the undock button to exit the ship hanger for the captain quarters.  Double clicking on the ship brought up the cargo hold, and things seemed to operate how they used to.

Watching the Singularity client memory usage during my playing around, I found it sat on average around 1,050MB in the Captain Quarters, 850MB in the Hanger, and 750MB in space.  Still much higher than the 650MB pre-Incarna memory foot print, but a bit better than old.

The first major glitch was that undocking and re-docking left you staring at a static space type background instead of your ship.

The only way to get the hangar space to display correctly was to enter the Captain Quarters and return to the hangar space.  Because of this I could not test if the Hangar view worked if the station environment wasn’t loaded – although it did dock you up with the same static space background, and gave you the option to exit to the Captain Quarters (which brought up the picture of the door.)  I am hoping that option will use even less memory.

I also had a number of crashes when using two Singularity clients concurrently – when docking one client into the faulty hanger view, both clients would at times die simultaneously.

The new font immediately brought back 20 year old memories of writing REXX scripts on an IBM 3090.  It is sort of an old fashioned dumb terminal font.  It is definitely more readable and better than the old – but it is not quite as polished as I would have expected.

The only problem I have – and it is an annoying one – is that it messes up the Overview.  I would really prefer to be able to make the overview font size smaller – I can’t fit as much information in as I used to be able to for a given field length.

I did not particularly pay close attention – but I think in hindsight the gun icons were much clearer.

I only glanced around the inside of the Gallente station, which was sort of ok.  I found I couldn’t get close to the edge of the observation bay using the mouse, so had to resort to the keyboard controls.  That was kind of odd.  I did sort of start to see the potential once they release establishments.

And last of all I checked out the new Cyno effects.

I’m afraid I did not get a good screen capture of the jump (it looks better in action than frozen at a point in time).  Basically it looks like the old wormhole / water ripple effect, but with a red glow that expands out into a nice large red electrical sort of flash.

It didn’t look quite as interesting as the old white spider web sort of effect, but again, it was much improved on the current.  It will be interesting to see what a fleet of capitals look like.  Being hot dropped will be more visually unpleasant.  (Note the screen captures really do not do it justice.)

Assuming CCP iron out the bugs and polish things off, I look forward to seeing these on Tranquility.