Sunday February 9th saw the Black Dragon viewer updated to version 22.214.171.124. Dramatically referred to as an “emergency” update, the new version is another interim release, with major changes on the horizon as the viewer moves ever closer to the 2.4 version number.
To be honest, I’m not entirely sure quite what warrants this being called an “emergency” release. The quoted reasons for the update (HTTP and Fitted Mesh) haven’t exactly been hidden away by the Lab, but have been talked about openly for a while – and the code (while still being tweaked and banged on in the case of Fitted Mesh, admittedly), has been available for poking-at. But anyaway, suffice it to say the new version is here, comprising a lot of nips and tucks, as listed in the change log with the release notes.
This isn’t intended as a full review, but more an overview of key changes.
The first of these is that the viewer is up-to-date with the Lab’s 3.7.0 code base, and so includes Fitted Mesh, which the Lab announced as officially released on February 10th.
Niran is a keen gamer, and as such put considerable work into his first viewer in adding options and controls other gamers would find familiar, such as offering more shooter game style camera placement, etc.
With this release of black Dragon, he’s put effort into enhancing the ability to map the viewer’s options and functions into game controllers – most notably the Xbox 360 controller. In carrying out this work, he notes:
- Works with up to 16 buttons (for other controllers or joysticks)
- Adds the ability to map zoom in/out/default, roll left/right, jump, crouch, toggle flycam, toggle run, toggle fly and Mouselook to available buttons
- Certain mappings only work in either Avatar / Flycam or Build mode.
A video has been produced showing avatar movement using a game controller.
In another move to provide a game-like feel, Niran has duplicated the click-and-hold left mouse button and then use the mouse to rotate the camera / move your avatar to the right mouse button, as demonstrated in another video, which demonstrates the capability in conjunction with using the movement keys.
As noted, this is a duplication of the original left mouse button click / hold functionality, which can still be used by those who are already used to it.
Alongside of both of these, although not directly related to it, he has also added the option to disallow using Mouse-wheel to change values in spinners. Prevents some nasty problems with hover tips accidentally getting set to infinite.
In lin with recent LL RC and release viewers, this Release of Black Dragon includes a good number of MAINT, STORM and OPEN fixes and contributions including STORM-1980, the updated region restart message and STORM-1981, the updates to avatar tracking beacons. All of these updates, together with Niran’s own fixes, additions, changes and tweaks can be found in the release change log noted above.