Experimental SDL version uploaded for Windows

We’ve just updated the bleeding edge Windows link, and have added a second link: SDL builds. It’s a different way to render the game, and we’re hoping that it will eliminate some of the performance issues that we hear about from Windows users. At the very least, SDL bugs are things that our main Linux devs can potentially fix, which is an improvement.

The front page of the website has links for both the traditional rendering system (“GDI”, I’m told), and the new SDL-based build.

If anyone wants to help us out, we would greatly appreciate hearing feedback about performance differences between the two versions - as well as the usual desire to receive bug reports, of course ;).


Put it up on the facebook page.


Are there only meant to be Performance differences? Is SDL meant to be better?
If so, I might move over to using it, just to help with feedback.
But, is it, the Nightly builds, or the full updates or what?
Can some more info be given about what the SDL version is for please? And what is included? (or meant to be)

There’s definitely a vast improvement in performance, at least for me. Also, the new font looks very nice. Good job! One question, though: On the map screen I noticed a level indicator, “Level: 0” what is that for? I don’t think I’ve noticed it before.

Oh, I see that in the latest nightly build too.

Edit: Oh, and now… This morning, I had the best luck. Time for it all to be for nothing, cause I guess, I’m going with the SDL version.

Edit: If SDL does perform better… Are you going to actually work on two different modes? Is there an advantage for the other one?
Wouldn’t it be easier to on your part to work on just the SDL version? To be honest, I’m not very well educated in this area, so I might sound like a damn idiot. But I’m interested in the answer to that.

Another Edit: This time, about problems. I’m in the options, might just be me… But the text is hurting my eyes a bit, too be honest… Might just have to get used to it, sorry if its just me… Can anyone else confirm? I’m usually used to screens and stuff too. (Edit) Nope it’s just in the options menu.

The SDL build is presently feature-identical with the non-SDL build, assuming they’re both the same version (i.e., bleeding edge SDL is the same as bleeding edge GDI; it’s not the same as 0.5, obviously). The SDL build may eventually become more full-featured than the GDI build (especially when we eventually get tiles support - that will be SDL-based), but for now, I mainly expect performance differences.

That’s the level of the current map - it was added when we added the ability to examine higher/lower levels (e.g., so that you can be in sewer system, and easily cross-reference the sewers with the above ground terrain).

Can’t switch fonts, which is unfortunate.

You should be able to load any TTF font that you stick in the data/font/ directory. I’m not sure how we’d access system fonts in Windows SDL builds, though, which is a mark in favor of keeping the old rendering method around, at least for now.

I notice this one has been updated too? I mean, I don’t think, Zombies were in houses randomly in the last nightly build from a couple of nights ago…
Though, I could have just randomly encountered a zombie in the first house I searched.

Yeah, the nightlies were broken for a while (they never got pointed to the new Github repository when we recently moved from DarklingWolf’s personal repo, to a shared repo). So there’s about a week’s backlog of changes that will be in both of the bleeding edge versions linked from the main page.

Hm. You may want to consult LazyCat on the font matter. His SDL version seems to be all figured out.
As it is right now, cootue_curses_square_16x16.ttf is all sorts of screwed up. Same with the defaults. Just looks… wonky.

Sweet, so I’m looking forwards to a lot of new features then : ) Better keep my eyes and ears open.
Now, this should be fun.

@Dzlan If you think that’s new, then be sure to press [Page Down] on the map screen, too. :wink:

Sweet! So this prob means no more maps being wiped out.
Also, feedback on performance… Defenitely an increase. No more lag when running.
Need to get used to that.
Can’t wait to test out the new vehicle physics.

Not sure if it was fixed yet, but saving and loading while zombies are on screen caused them to move when loading game and sometimes multiply. (I think so) I’ma go try that out next time I encounter some.

Save/load multiplication of enemies was fixed recently (testing the fixed version vs. the non-fixed version was pretty dramatic). I don’t think the position-changing enemies have been addressed, though.

Oh, well, they just moved one step as if I had skipped my turn. Nothing too serious there.

OH WOW!!! So, before, reading was literally 20 seconds, skill increase to 13%, another 20 seconds, skill increase to 19%
Now, it is almost instant. Just Bam! 13% Bam 19% Bam 24%.
I must say, that is a definite improvement.

Well it sounds like all the bugs are ironed out midnight seems like a good time to play some new cataclysm.

Haha, Yeah. I think this has been a major step forwards for Cataclysm. Doing a great job. And I must give a big thanks to the devs for this too, cause Cataclysm has given me a huge amount of fun. Not just playing it, but the stories I make in it and of course, I’m writing a small novel based on Cataclysm, to help refine my writing skills. Currently 7 pages in, but when it’s complete I’ll put it up online for others to read. : )

I’ll have to give a read then. I do agree with you that its about making stories then sharing them with other people or turning them into novels or any other form of media, and in that sense Cataclysm becomes more of a source of inspiration than a rougelike (but still is a great rougelike). This is what most post-apocalyptic games should be like creating your own story while surviving in a harsh unforgiving world.

Yes, that is definitely my favorite part of Cataclysm and Dwarf Fortress. Making your own stories and tales. A true Rogue Like game.
Oh and of course the ASCII graphics. (Like a novel, your mind has to create the visuals).