Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Beta 5: Readability, Win Notifications, and Window Sizing

Solitaire Till Dawn BETA 5 is now available for download from our Beta Program page.

Here's what's new:

Easier to Read Cards
Update: We've learned more about this problem since I wrote the discussion below. See Tiny Suits to find out what we learned. We will fix this problem, we promise.

We have had a lot (and I mean a whole lot) of complaints that the card indices are hard to read. (The card indices are the rank-and-suit at the upper-left corner of a card: 2♠ for example.) Frankly, we were surprised. In a certain sense, the card indices were the same size as in the old version.

But after some thought, I began to understand the problem. Modern monitors have higher resolution (more pixels-per-inch, or "ppi") than the older monitors that the old version of STD ran on. An image that is (say) 72 pixels high was a full inch high on an old monitor, but that same image would be less than 3/4" high on my current monitor.

The obvious solution is to make the card indices bigger, but then that makes a layout take more space on-screen, because you have to spread the cards a little more loosely to see all of the larger indices in a fan or column. A larger layout may mean that you now have to use smaller cards to fit a game onto your screen, which defeats the purpose because smaller cards have, you guessed it, smaller card indices.

But we've done our best. The card indices in b5 are significantly larger, and we've tried to minimize the increase in layout size. We hope you like the result.

Win Notifications
A passel of bugs were found with the "You win" notifications. We think we've fixed them all; you tell us if we missed a spot.

First, the settings in Preferences > Notifications are now honored. If you turn off "Tell Me When I Win", you won't see the alert.

If you turn on "Show my statistics when I win" the All Statistics window will appear when you win, even if you've turned off "Tell Me When I Win".

In the All Statistics window, selecting "Start New Game After Win" now immediately changes the "Done" button to "New Game", and vice-versa. Clicking "Done" makes the window go away. Clicking "New Game" actually starts a new game.

Window Sizing
Solitaire Till Dawn is supposed to remember your window size and placement, on a per-game basis; and now in b5, it actually does. If you've never played a particular kind of solitaire before, it will show you a window with the largest card size that will fit on your screen; but after that, it will remember any change you make to window size and placement, and go back to it whenever you start up or switch to that game.

We also added a checkmark to the Card Sizes menu item that shows your current card size.

Summing Up
In this release we have again tried to address the most urgent issues that seem to be on your minds. As always, please let us know whether the results are pleasing and working as expected.

Your reports continue to be immensely valuable to us. Thanks, and keep up the good work!

1 comment:

  1. Beta 5 has fixed the bugs I was experiencing-Montana crashing and repeated "import data" windows. Sooo thrilled to have the game back! Thanks so much and where can I sign up for therapy after Feb 1st?