v0.2.5 is nearing completion, and will be available here on ModDB for download. While v0.2 Beta RC1 is available, we decided not to upload it here, since that version was extremely bloated, taking a very long time to load.
This problem is due to a major oversight in Game Maker. Even when you delete a resource (sound, graphics, scripts) from the source, the internal resource counter does not change. For example, there is a resource called "sound100". You delete that and create a new sound resource. That new resource is named "sound101".
Imagine that accumulating over six months with the countless mergings we've done, and you'll see the numbers dramatically increase. Before Obreck and I knew about any of this, our source suddenly stopped working. Things behaved strangely, like no music playing and world map movement glitches. Our source was corrupted beyond repair, and it caused us to lose 1 1/2 weeks of work. Looking at the corrupt source, Game Maker thought that there was this many of each resource:
...all in a 30,054KB GMK source file.
Thanks to the utility LateralGM, and help from one of its developers (Clam), we were able to defrag and optimize the GMK source immensely. The optimized resource count:
163 scripts (mostly the FMOD scripts)
Final filesize: 25,672KB
We shaved off almost 5MB of unused, memory-hogging resource data that pointed to nothing. Now this optimized source loads lightning fast: less than 2 minutes for me as compared to 15 to 20 minutes before. Backgrounds (except tilesets) and uncommon sounds will be externalized, bringing down filesize and RAM requirements as well.
Too much of the unused resource data had accumulated over 6 months to a point where it caused Game Maker to choke.
This fix will benefit both developer and gamers alike. The optimized game source allows for much easier and much faster updates for the developers. For the gamer, future versions will load much much faster than v0.2 Beta RC1.
v0.2.5 will be totally optimized, loading much faster than v0.2. Here are some of the new features and fixes to expect in v0.2.5:
*Heavily optimized Game Maker source file makes the game load much faster than before.
*Fully complete Mega Man suits for all characters.
*3HP for the Mega Man suits when in World 3, withstanding three hits before it is lost. Outside of World 3, the suits will be lost on one hit.
*At least ten new levels included, bringing the number of playable levels to about 40 in v0.2.5 Beta.
The chief complaint about the game, slowdown and lag on certain computers, will not be able to be addressed until a utility comes out that allows us to compile the Game Maker GMK source into C++, which, in turn, compiles it into a Windows Executable. The lag is solely due to the interpreted nature of Game Maker games; they are pre-packed with an interpreter along with the source code in one EXE. Interpreted code is much much slower than compiled software. One such utility, ENIGMA, will be able to parse the GMK source into C++. In turn, it will compile the C++ code into a true Windows executable.