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Messages - Anbalsilfer

As amazing as the RimWorld standard soundtrack is, I'm sure I'm far from the only one who's found it to start to get a bit repetitive as your cumulative playtime starts reaching into the quadruple digits in hours.

I've recently been thinking a lot about this, and also about new ways to make expanding with new colonies into different biomes more appealing. These two lines of thought converged in my mind to make me wonder how hard it would be to create a biome-sensitive music mod, which expands on RimWorld's soundtrack with more context-sensitive songs configured to only play when micromanaging a colony in a specific biome. After reading up a bit on the SongDef element syntax, I came to the conclusion that this would actually be trivial, if an additional qualifying child element, allowedBiomes, could be supported by the game.

The SongDef element already supports a qualifying child element allowedSeasons. The idea for allowedBiomes is essentially the same, except it would contain a list of biome references for biomes the song is allowed to play in.

This seems to an uninitiated observer like an addition with a very high potentiality-to-effort ratio. This simple change would make it very easy to make a mod that significantly expands on Rimworld's soundtrack in a far more context-sensitive way than has before been easily achievable.
I think I might have figured out what causes this (problem is still present in the final Alpha 16 release). The bug seems to be triggered by the player manually dumping gear brought back by a caravan from the pack animals. In other words, the precise steps to reproduce are:

  • Send out a trading caravan, wait for it to complete and come back
  • When the pack animals arrive, instead of letting your haulers unload them, unload them manually by clicking the animals, choosing the "Gear" tab and pressing the drop button on everything they carry, thus dumping it on the ground.
  • Put together another trading caravan with pack animals, with enough items to require the animals. Make sure not all active haulers are assigned to the caravan.
  • Watch as your caravan leaders attempt to load the pack animals while the haulers simultaneously try to unload them.

Apparently there is some sort of "unload pack animals" flag that is set on your haulers when a caravan returns to the base, and is cleared when the pack animals are empty. This doesn't happen if the player gets impatient and simply dumps everything from the pack animals manually, however, causing the haulers to enter a faulty state where they will try to unload any pack animal with items, even during preparation of another caravan.
No, this happened when I tried to send out my second trading caravan from my starting location. The first caravan I sent out seemed to work OK, at least I didn't notice any haulers unloading the muffalo while the caravan leader was trying to pack them, but on the second try I noticed haulers removing stuff from the muffalo even as the caravan pawn was loading it. It's possible the problem only occurs when trying to send out a second caravan after a first one has successfully returned from trading.

Is there a flag that is set when a trading caravan returns to cause haulers to help with unloading the pack animals, maybe? If so the problem might be that this flag is not cleared properly once unloading is done, causing haulers to keep unloading while another caravan is being prepared.
[Alpha 16 unstable build]

Someone else already brought up the chaos that ensues when you try to prepare a caravan with just a single pawn but a lot of goods, causing animals and the pawns in question to starve themselves and/or eventually collapse from exhaustion because the caravan preparation is simply taking too long (and all assigned caravan pawns and animals ignore all other activities during the preparation).

I just noticed another problem that is exacerbating the problem: namely, your haulers. You'd think during caravan preparation they'd be nice chaps and actually help load your muffalo, right? Well, wrong. They do the exact opposite, instead unloading stuff from the pack muffalo your diligent caravaneer is trying to load, bringing everything back to their stockpiles.

I seems like a good way to fix both these issues, although I've no idea how hard it would be to implement, would be to make the game consider the pack animal itself a stockpile for the items it should carry, of even higher priority than "critical". That way haulers would actually help caravaneers to load the pack animals instead of undermining their efforts.

Another thing I noticed is that it can make a huge difference in preparation time where your pack animal decides to park itself for loading during preparation. If your muffalo decides to park right in your stockpile preparation will be done in no time, whereas if stops on the other side of your colony, your caravan will be doomed before it even has a chance to depart because loading will take forever. A workaround for this would of course be to simply move your stockpile to the muffalo, but it seems like a better solution would be to let the player designate a pack animal loading spot, in the same way we can currently designate a marriage or party spot.
Not sure if this is intended, but it seems weird: Bringing along any animals, pack animals or otherwise, in a caravan has no impact on how long the food supply will last, implying that any animals in the caravan simply won't eat anything at all.

Also, similarly not sure if intended or not, but tame alpacas, while they can be brought along on the caravan, don't increase the caravan capacity like muffalos do. It seems like it should be possible to use alpacas as pack animals, considering they are often used that way IRL.
Apparently Alpha 16 has made it possible to create separate crafting bills for specific stone block types, which is wonderful. The most powerful assignment type, "Do until you have X", for these bills doesn't seem to work as intended, however, since a bill for a specific stone block type is considered fulfilled once you have X of *any* stone blocks, not just of the specified type. Ideally, a bill to "Do until you have 50" marble blocks should only be considered fulfilled once you have 50 marble blocks in your stockpiles, not a total of 50 stone blocks of any kind.
Just a FYI, when the minimap is activated (in Mod Options) and in its default position, it completely covers up the Map Reroll icon. It can be moved out of the way though. You might want to throw in a warning somewhere about that.
I've fixed the obvious errors and recompiled this for A14, and submitted a merge request to the original author. Beware though that I've done very little testing, just verified that a cart can be built and that it seems to work. My updated version can be downloaded from my GitHub project page at

Hopefully the original author accepts the merge request and decides to get back to actively maintaining it.
Could I have an invitation? I don't have any mods to maintain of my own, but I wanted to see if I could assist Fluffy with his Colony Manager. He told me to join the Rimworld modding Slack so I can talk to him if I run into problems.

Email is [email protected]
Outdated / Re: [A14] Colony Manager
July 25, 2016, 06:24:14 PM
Well that went so-so. I tried getting Colony Manager to compile in both SharpDevelop and Visual Studio Community, but both failed. SharpDevelop choked on the lambda expressions in the source code for some reason, and VS apparently compiles against a different (later?) version of the API. What sort of development environment do you have setup to compile this project?
Help / SharpDevelop setup for modding
July 25, 2016, 12:21:20 PM
I tried to set up SharpDevelop for RimWorld modding in order to compile Colony Manager (, in accordance with the instructions at

After an error message when trying to open the .sln file about missing build tools I installed msbuild 2015, which caused the error to go away, but now SharpDevelop chokes on the numerous lambda expressions in the source code, leading me to believe it is trying to compile with an outdated version. To be specific, I get CS1519 (invalid token) errors whenever the => operator appears in the source code. I've tried and failed to find help online, so now turning to the forums. Has anyone had better luck setting up SharpDevelop to compile any project that uses lambda expressions?
Outdated / Re: [A14] Colony Manager
July 25, 2016, 09:36:12 AM
As I wrote in my original post, I understand the reasoning behind not having it, but I really think the decision whether or not to use it should be left to the player. As I pointed out, far from all players rely on mountains to protect their base perimeter. For those that do, just a warning to be careful when using this feature on the tab should be enough, or, as you suggested, a way to declare areas as no go to zones for mining.

I realized there's one difference between woodcutting and mining though, and that is that mining yields multiple different materials rather than just one. One way to handle this would be to create different bills for different materials, but this leaves the priority between different materials open, and miners are likely to dig up whatever is closest to the colony first. Ideally there should be some way to define an order of priority between materials, so that the quota for the first material in fulfilled before ores of the next one are even flagged for mining. Maybe simply allow a bill to not be processed until the one before it in the list is completed?

I'm a programmer myself and could maybe help out with this if you lack the time. I've never worked on a DLL-based Rimworld mod before but I'm sure I could get up to speed fairly quickly.
Is this mod being actively developed by the current maintainers?

I was wondering one thing about the so-called "Smart duct outlet"...

Is there any particular reason why this needs to be connected to either one or the other network channel? It seems like a weird design decision. If it were simultaneously connected to both a hot and a cold air network, it could mix the air from the channels as needed to reach any temperature between them. The way it's designed right now you need two of these for each isolated space to maintain a steady temperature, regardless of temperature outside. A simple water faucet in most people's homes are able to mix water to any temperature. Don't real HVAC systems really work in the same way?
Outdated / Re: [A14] Colony Manager
July 24, 2016, 06:59:11 PM
I'd like to chip in on a controversial topic....

PLEASE add a mining tab. I know this has been on the table before and you decided not to include it for fears of having pawns accidentally compromise the colony's perimeters, but I honestly don't think this is a good enough reason to exclude this feature. Not everyone uses mountains for colony protection, and regardless I think the player should be trusted with the judgement to decide whether automatic or manual mining would be most suitable in their particular circumstances.

Technically, it seems straightforward. As you yourself have pointed out before, the mining tab would probably work very much alike the woodcutting tab, except flagging the nearest visible instances of desired ores instead of trees.

A very nifty extra feature would be if you could set the manager up to automatically begin strip mining (i.e simply mining tunnels in a grid pattern through the rock) nearby mountains in search for ores once a desired ore type is no longer visibly available . This would of course radically increase the chances of infestations spawning, so it should be possible to deactivate this feature.

Manual mining is mildly interesting the first couple of times you do it, but after so many playthroughs it eventually, like manual hunting and woodcutting, becomes more and more tedious and an annoying distraction.

The recent interaction of the mineable components drives this point home even stronger, since there's now yet another critical resource to keep running out of due to insufficient micromanagement.