Performance Issues...begone!
Published on September 2, 2010 By ScottTykoski In Elemental Dev Journals

More of a maintenance update than anything, Elemental v1.07 focuses on the performance issues seen by both high and low end users. There are more improvements to come as code is continually improved and tile-designs are streamlined, but this update should bring a healthy FPS boost to all. And, if your frames per second remain under-par, new options will give you additional wiggle-room.
That's not to say gameplay dosen't get some update love...resources no longer use up city tiles, unit groups save out the necessary info to regenerate themselves on reload, and item stacking heroes is a thing of the past...but performance, memory usage, and overall stability were our targets here.

Note: A 1.07.025 hotfix was published with a fix for a crash in the 'Custom Sovereign' system (Merchant/Brilliant/Meditative traits). This would have caused a crash loading saved sovereigns or games with those traits applied as well.
----------- Elemental v1.07 Change Log  -----------

* Performance *
+ Major improvement to rendering system, especially when over cities.
+ Condensed scene rendering process from 3 passes through scene into a single pass
+ Bunch of fixes to the issues behind "DX Error: Invalid Call", particularly when Alt-Tab'ing. This will continue to be worked on.
+ Added new framerate limiter ( limits framerate to refresh rate of device )
- Removed throttle framerates option (this is always on now)
+ Particle Effects no longer render if the "Disable Particle Effects" option is on
+ Outlines now LOD-out as you zoom out
+ Added option "Disable Outlines" to the options screen to turn off rendering outlines (Might help lower-end machines, and some people prefer no outlines)
+ Commented out unnecessary debug messages

* Bug Fixes *
+ Fixed Various Memory Leaks
+ Fixed the issue that was causing the unimproved tile designs for elemental shards to stick around after a shard-harvesting improvement was built on top of them.
+ fixed a bug where if you have the option on where when entering/leaving city build mode, the camera switches between overhead and default view, you could get stuck in overhead view (and forced to manually move the camera back) if you pressed the city build mode button, while already in city build mode
+ fixed bug where AI demands a tribute of 0 gildar
+ fixed display issue where improvement cost entries overfilled the improvement build list
+ fixed display issue where units with long names overfilled the name area on the level up wnd.
+ fixed display issue on battle init wnd, if defense or attack was negative then it showed up as a huge number.  Beserker ring gives a -3 to defense, which could give you negative overall defense.  Same might be true of attack if in the future we have some strange item that decreases your attack.
+ Fixed bug where units in tile designs (like horses, wargs, etc) would not fade out when the tile is under fog of war
+ Fixed "jumping units" when starting new game from within a game (or loading a game within a game)
+ Other fixes regarding battle initition window, creating mountains in map editor, first contact status not being set to relation unknown
+ Fixed a bug where improvements that were flagged as once-per-city were able
to be placed twice.

* Gameplay / Balance *
+ Fixed bug where economic treaty gold bonuses weren't getting added to the global resource pool
+ Changed how creatures and NPCs increase their stats when they level up to nerf incredibly powerful high-level monsters running around
+ Stacking of items fixed (can now only wear 1 per type per champion)
+ Pioneers in a boat can no longer build a Settlement at sea
+ Wild improvements will now be able to be taken into account in a city's resource usage correctly, if any of them ever have negative resource production
+ Refugee camps (and other wild improvements that provide population storage bonuses) improvements
+ Fixed Miner sovereign profession bonus
+ Fixed Great Warriors faction bonus
+ Removed really high starting mana regen ability from Umber's faction config
+ Fixed Advanced Tracking techs (in both tech trees) to change the player ability that is hooked up to affect movement
+ Fixed broken productionreq tag on vengeance coating
+ References to Ice shards changed to Water for consistency
+ Sprint duration adjusted to 2
+ Lowered HP for fallen peasant
+ Fixed up resource hoard description text
+ Various food resources now provide different amounts as indicated by old description text
+ Improved output of Temple of Essence
+ Improved output of Tower of Titans, Tower of Souls
+ Fixed construction resource cost for curgen's exchange
+ Resource hoard costs now mirror kingdoms resource costs
+ Fixed up description text for construction yard
+ Great Theatre no longer provides +100% Gildar, only +100% Prestige
+ AI: Added code to send sovereign back to his capital city if he has no destination after the early phase of the game
+ Fixes for various terrain types not responding to RaiseLand spell
+ Resource hoards no longer deduct from the buildable tiles of a city (the 'bananna cities' from the forums)

* Battles *
+ Changed the calculation for battle damage to take multiple troops into better account (with each unit getting an individual attack roll).
+ Every time panic is caused, the combat text for the panic will be shown.
+ Fixed a problem where misses and non-damage spells would cause an on hit animation to be played in tactical battles.
+ Fixed a possible bug where units would no longer update their troop counts after reaching a single troop left.
+ When selecting the spell book in tactical battles the cursor should now reset to the arrow.
+ When clicking on a unit's hiergemenon entry in tactical battles the cursor should now reset to the arrow.
+ Turned on bounding box picking for tactical battles to improve the feel of unit selection.
+ Selecting units should now be turned back on while other units are animating in tactical battles.
+ Fixed a bug where unit tooltips in tactical battles would draw over tooltips for items and spells.
+ Added some checks to the battle init window to stop the window from showing when defenders or attackers were null. Also added logic to clear waiting flags in this case.

* UI *
+ Adopted the unit vitals context for a Details tab to show when a wild improvement is selected on the main map, to give more meaningful and easier to read information
- If the improvement is under construction, it says so and uses the level slider to show the progress towards completion and the turns left
- If the improvement is done, it shows what that improvement is producing and has an entry to get further information about the improvement by opening up the lorebook
- Also, it shows which city an improvement is linked to, or "Not linked" if it isn't.  If it is linked, the tooltip explains that this city is contributing production bonuses to the resource production of that improvement.  If the improvement is not linked, the tooltip says how many tiles the nearest city needs to be closer to link with that city, explaining that it will be able to get city production bonuses if it does link
+ New Tactical Icons hooked up for Smelter, Trade Center, Construction Yard, Merchant Guild
+ New Tile Designs for Ventri Iron Mine, Stone Quarry, Clay Quarry, Marble Quarry, Drath Village, Shrill Hive, Spider Nest
+ Fixed bug where double-clicking on a spell you couldn't cast from the spellbook popup would queue a bunch of "Can't cast tactical spell" message boxes to appear over and over, now just plays a little failure sound if something that can't be cast is double-clicked
+ Fixed a typo in a campaign dialog
+ When you build an improvement on a resource, the map notifier for it is removed
+ Fixed typo "completly restored" to "completely restored"
+ Fixed some places where the display of per-turn gold production lagged behind changes to it, gets rid of some income discrepancies between some screens when loading a game, adding/cancelling a treaty, etc.

* Known Issues *

+ Tactical Battles: Stuck turn if you use space bar or click "Pass Turn" button while selected unit is moving.  Clicking auto-resolve will end the battle if the turn is stuck.
+ Occasional instances of damage indicators not appearing over units.

Comments (Page 3)
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on Sep 02, 2010


I think it looks better too. Yeah, some people were saining it looks more 'painted' without outlines...and the extra boost to performance is the icing on the cake!  (I prefer them on, but to each their own...)

Time to find out whats causing that bug... then it's time for a quickfix, Stardock. A 1 minute fix   Rebuilding now, the restaging.

Outstanding - thanks for the quick response.

on Sep 02, 2010

If 1.07 does what it claims, I think we finally have a game....

Now we can get down to normal Stardock game business (playability, AI stupidity, and possibility).

on Sep 02, 2010

+ Turned on bounding box picking for tactical battles to improve the feel of unit selection.

What does that mean?

on Sep 02, 2010

YAY!!! Various Memory Leaks fixed... The rest is Gravy!!!  Mucho Kudos Stardock! 


Edit: I began testing this for you(SD) tonight and there are still more memory leaks, but overall much improved, they do not happen so often, and overall performance is much nicer mid-game!  Still Two thumbs up for the improvement, keep up the good work!

on Sep 02, 2010

Nice, thanks for the hard work and the update.

on Sep 02, 2010

+ Turned on bounding box picking for tactical battles to improve the feel of unit selection.

What does that mean?


I am hoping this mean you can now select the unit by placing the mouse cursor over the unit graphic and clicking rather than the ground the unit is standing on but it all depends on which bounding box they refer... Should be the units bounding box...Computer Graphic programmer jargon.  Having a B.S. in Comp Sci just means I can BS with most Devs...  

on Sep 02, 2010


A 1 minute fix   Rebuilding now, the restaging.

That is awesome. 

Some people would have been like, we'll get that in the next patch.  I admire the dedication.

on Sep 02, 2010

Great work! Thank you for a wonderful game stardock!

on Sep 02, 2010

All the fixes, was there one for roll over pop up when deleting buildings? It's always been tough to know which building to clear without backing out of the demolish function. I may have missed that. It's late and I'm not reading 100% straight.

on Sep 02, 2010

Thanks for the fast patching Stardock, off to download right now.

on Sep 02, 2010

I figured I'd better ask before updating... does 1.07 affect prior games? IOW, do we need to start new games?

on Sep 02, 2010

Crashing when trying to create a custom sovereign

Set all stats except intelli + Wisdom to 5 (these 2 were set to 15)

Earth and enchanchment books only

Miner profession

All non-army orienated traits (no cons)

No items


Repeated design several times with exact same result (game hangs than crashes).


on Sep 02, 2010

Thank you ! We have faith in you !


on Sep 02, 2010

Yeah, it's caused by being smart or meditating. They're fixing it.

I'm also getting this crash when my sovereign selector comes up, before I can click a sovereign or create a character. Should it be crashing there too?


Note: My performance is awesome now in my old savegame (yes, they work). Thanks, I can finally play this game after 150 turns outside of my clothy map.

on Sep 03, 2010

Much better fps and performance now. Memory leaks still ensues though, much to my dismay, but I'm generally pleased with the improvement to playability, as my game did not slow down one bit for my entire play-through.

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