Playground like testing tool

Because of this post from @Demorf I am currently recreating some of the features from the playground.

The parts that I have already done are the visualizing part of gamestates (using the Matchviewer I created) and the part of letting the game engine calculateing the turn results using the same websocket the original playground uses.
The missing parts are the user interaction, the data handling and new additional visualizations.

Some of the Ideas I have in mind for this tool are:

  • being able to setup a starting situation (including information spawns of the opponent)
  • then being able to test multiple attacks/defences against the same situation without any additional setup time for the opponent
  • hiding the 4 second waiting time (that the playground currently has) while the user can setup the attack he wants to test
  • compare multiple attack/defence results in a table
  • instead of always having to create a situation from scratch, I want to integrate an option to the match viewer, that clones the current turn actions to this new testing tool.

I am currently not planning on making it possible to play multiple turns after each other since this is a feature that works perfectly fine with the playground.

To clarify things a bit, there will probably be two modes:

  • setup mode:
    ** you can change everything here (like sandbox and even more)
    ** e.g. remove anything instantly, place stuff down, change resources, change damage of towers, change lives of players, change which actions the opponent will take later when being in testing mode
  • testing mode:
    ** for each test you start with the predefined setup
    ** only thing to do would be setting up attacks/defences
    ** being able to somehow review older tests that have been done (not sure how? maybe like in normal replay, but instead of having turn after turn you would have test after test of the same turn)
    ** table that compares test result stats like bits spent, cores spend, scores scored, damage recieved, …

With this you could either do Minigames as @Demorf suggested or if your algo did some bad things you can try out what would have been better by hand.

Since I haven’t started yet with creating the new user interface for these features I am insterested if you have some other Ideas, concerns or feedback on my ideas.

3 Likes

Sounds great.
I would suggest configuring “setup” and “play” modes to using standard replay-state-string, and spawn-string.
Then at some point, a more friendly interface can be build, for creating and reusing this strings.

1 Like

There are some updates on this testing tool:

  • I decided for now that the simulator will be integrated into the match viewer directly. It’s not ready to share yet but it’s getting closer. The idea is that it will be possible to simulate multiple variations for one turn and all these additional frames will be inserted into the main replay file. With some additional visuals you will be able to distinguish between the original replay and the simulations.

  • The setup mode I talked about above is not the main thing I’m focusing on right now. Especially since even without it, you could basically do everything I described above by modifying a replay file with a text editor.

  • it’s now possible to upload replay files to the match viewer by using drag and drop