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My Colony v1.34.0 Released

Today I have published an update to the original My Colony, bringing it up to v1.34.0, which should be hitting all platforms soon. There are a few changes here, so let's take a look!


First, I have reverted the in-game popup style menus to the big full window height slideout menus. Some players (on mobile in particular) were having issues with the other menu style, so I decided to just go back to the old reliable slideout menus that nobody seemed to have an issue with.

The Music Rendering engine has been completely replaced and is now using a new library called SpessaSynth that I have been following for a little while now. The developer of this new MIDI sequencing library is very good and is quite active, and has been super responsive when I have had questions or issues with the library. If you wouldn't mind, go to his Github repo and leave it a Star, because he does good work.

https://github.com/spessasus/SpessaSynth

This new library uses more modern JS coding techniques and renders .mid files in a worker thread, and so it does not impact game performance like the old MIDI renderer did. With this change though, you may notice that the music sounds a little different. Since the new library makes use of standard .sf2 sound font files, I am currently using with the game the widely available General MIDI soundfont, which is only a fraction of the size of the music patches that were being used with the old renderer. That said, this sound font objectively does not sound quite as good.

The good news is that the new library supports custom sound fonts, whereas the old one did not. If there is interest from players, I can add an option to the game that lets users select their own *.sf2 sound font file and then they can make the music sound however they want it to. For copyright reasons though, I will probably stick to the free one as the in-game packaged sound font.

Finally, this update includes beta-level support for a new Ape Apps-wide feature I have been working on behind the scenes for a while now, which is Private Cloud support. Currently, users of all of my apps, My Colony included, who opt into Cloud Sync have their save data temporarily stored on one central Ape Cloud server. Since it is expensive (and out of the scope of my business) to run mass cloud storage hosting, files are routinely purged from the server after several months of inactivity, which is why the server is branded as a sync server and not a long-term storage server.

With the new Private Cloud feature I am working on, users may set up their own private cloud server at their own location and use it as their default save location for their data. I have already been testing this on a handful of other apps, and now I am rolling it out to My Colony.

The Private Cloud system is a part of an application called the Ape Web Apps Desktop Bridge, which is available as both a Progressive Web App and as a stand-alone application for Windows or Linux.

To get started, install the Ape Web Apps Desktop Bridge (either desktop or PWA edition, for private cloud I would suggest the full desktop download) and signs in with your Ape Apps Account. Once signed in, click on the Add Resource button and select Private Cloud.


From there, you can select a folder on your computer that will be your new private cloud sync folder. If you are using the PWA version, you will probably need to re-enable folder permissions every time you restart your computer, so keep that in mind. The desktop client does not have that limitation, which is why it is preferred.

If you are going to try using the Private Cloud, I would suggest setting your computer to automatically start the Ape Web Apps Desktop Bridge on startup. The desktop edition can be minimized to your system try, so it is non-obtrusive.

Once Private Cloud is set up, restart My Colony. If you are signed in with your account, you will see a new Cloud Sync Location option on the title screen menu.


If you only have one cloud sync folder enabled on your account, then it will automatically be set as the default, so keep that in mind. If you are given permission to multiple cloud sync locations, you will default to the central Ape Cloud service and you will have to manually select which server you want to use.

If you decide to give the new Private Cloud feature a try, please let me know how it works for you. This feature was originally designed for some business users using EZ Office applications whose business policies did not allow them to use the central Ape Cloud servers, but in my testing so far it is working quite well for My Colony saves. Theoretically you could set a lot better saving/loading performance, especially if you are at your own house while playing.

And yes, you can still sync to your own Private Cloud, even when you are not at home.

Another Private Cloud benefit is that you can easily back up all of your Ape Apps data whenever you feel like it. It would be trivial to compress your entire Private Cloud folder on a regular basis and keep backups in any way which works for you.

How does it work?

The Private Cloud feature uses a private channel on the central Ape Apps Signaling server, tied to your individual Ape Apps Account, to locate any AWA Desktop Bridge instances you have running. When Bridge instances are located, the Signaling server then initiates a peer-to-peer handshake to make a direct WebRTC socket connection between your My Colony instance and your AWA Desktop Bridge instance, similar to the way that My Colony 2 dedicated servers work. The Signaling server then gets out of the way and you are operating with a direct peer to peer link to your own Private Cloud server, wherever it is located.

In theory, this direct peer to peer connection should perform better than the centralized Ape Cloud server, because a) it obviously has a lot less traffic going to it, and b) it is using a persistent direct connection instead of making constant HTTP requests.

So that is the Private cloud system in a nutshell. Like I said, give it a try and let me know how it works for you, or what issues it gives you. I have been using it for a little while on some EZ Office applications and it has been running without issue, but they generally have smaller file sizes than My Colony saves, so it will be interesting to see how it goes.

So that is it for this update. It should be rolling out everywhere soon, so let me know how it goes, and stay tuned for more!

https://mycolony.online/

#mycolony
21d
#2
I like this decentralized approach to the service.
14d
#3
Hello, I think there is an issue with bots now.
Face the fear, build the future.
8d
#4
Hi, developer of SpessaSynth here.
I'm glad that spessasynth_lib has proven to be helpful!

One suggestion I have for the music, is using an sf3 soundfont since spessasynth supports these too.
They are essentially compressed sf2 soundfonts which allow higher quality sounds and maintain a small file size.
For example, you could use the free good quality "GeneralUser GS" soundfont which when compressed via Polyphone shrinks down to just 6 megabytes. while having a better sound quality than the current one. (or even go for a high quality soundfont like FluidR3_GM which compresses down to 17 megabytes)

Anyways, thanks for using my library in this cool game! :-)
8d
#5
based
6d
#6
None of my buildings are producing, and none of the bots are building anything. I’ve tried reloading the game but still nothing.
5d
#7
spessasus said:Hi, developer of SpessaSynth here.
I'm glad that spessasynth_lib has proven to be helpful!

One suggestion I have for the music, is using an sf3 soundfont since spessasynth supports these too.
They are essentially compressed sf2 soundfonts which allow higher quality sounds and maintain a small file size.
For example, you could use the free good quality "GeneralUser GS" soundfont which when compressed via Polyphone shrinks down to just 6 megabytes. while having a better sound quality than the current one. (or even go for a high quality soundfont like FluidR3_GM which compresses down to 17 megabytes)

Anyways, thanks for using my library in this cool game! :-)


Thank you so much, I will do that!
Owner of Ape Apps, LLC
My Colony





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Ape Apps, LLC is an independent software development company founded in 2010 by Brandon Stecklein. Over the years, Ape Apps has published over 400 apps and games across various platforms. You can get in touch with Brandon on Twitter or by leaving a post on his wall @bastecklein
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