Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Age of Conan - By Crom!! Support 2

As part of my continued investigation into MMO support using Age of Conan and Funcom as my testsbed, here is the latest on the Support Quest System.

Kill 10 x emails is my assignment.
Can I get a good feeling of support within 10 emails?

This quest is tough.

I have received an email after the VERY long weekend. So, let me share.

Hello again,

All right. I've reviewed the stuff you've already tried. The first
couple of questions that come to mind:

1) Are you using any unusual or intensive protective software? Very
often customers turn out to be running something I've never heard of
that turns out to be causing a problem with the game. Beyond
antivirus/firewall, things like ad-blockers that may use proxy settings
(Privoxy), parental control software, 'punkbuster', etc?

2) Any other graphics-tweaking programs like Powerstrip?

3) Do you use Vista's "UAC" (User Account Control)?

Also, I know you say you've tried other input peripherals, but have you
also tried disabling whatever control/macro programs they may leave
running in your system tray?

You can probably tell I am just throwing things out at this point, but
it'll give us a starting point. :)

This is some pretty good "canned" material. And it makes sense. We need to make sure these problems do not exist and we can get down (hopefully) to some good core troubleshooting.

I replied, and threw a monkey wrench in...

Yup...you are throwing things...but, here goes.

#1. I do NOT use antivirus, and instead use an online tool to scan,
thus not bogging down my system with junk. I use Trend Micro for
scanning each day. No Firewall or anti spyware in place. I use Xfire,
but this issue also existed without it running. I use Xpadder for my
360 controller, but had uninstalled and disabled for testing.

As I stated before, I have already done a clean wipe of my OS and did
a basic driver install, and clean AoC install from scratch to
eliminate oddities.

#2. No graphics tweaking.
#3. UAC has been on and off...neither did anything.

The only thing I wish to point out is I purchased a laptop this
weekend, which has only one thing that is different...and that is an
Nvidia video card, while my main system has an ATI.

The laptop DOES work with the left/right mouse button rotation.

But, why would the video card cause issues with the mouse? I could see
it being the problem with my resolutions issue though (as the one
resolution I want on my main system, 1366x768 DOES work on the laptop
and not the Main system)

If I had an extra 300 bucks lying around, I would of course switch to
an Nvidia card. But, I do not, thus I need to find a way to get DX10
working with my ATI 4870.


As you can see, I dangled a carrot.

The laptop.

As I previously wrote, I purchased a laptop and DX10 works 100% with no resolution or mouse issues. This is a good test to see if the support team would like to just instead give up on my issue, as I have a system in house that works.
I do not want to use the laptop specifically to play, as it is not as powerful as my main system.

I sure did get a quick reply.


I'm not too surprised the laptop is working; for the most part we are
just not receiving any other tickets on this despite a large number of
players using the DX10 client (on both ATI and NVIDIA hardware). We also
have ATI hardware being tested in-house under DX10 and cannot reproduce
this problem. This is the reason I don't have a lot to offer you aside
from going through some general troubleshooting steps.

In other words, I don't think this is just about the combination of your
card and DX10--if it was not possible to use this combo we would be
getting absolutely flooded with tickets and posts, and we're not.

Sorry, I missed that you tried it without the mouse drivers. Have you by
any chance tried with a wired mouse rather than wireless? (No, I don't
really think this is related--just trying to make sure nothing gets

Another question--what kind of monitor are you using? Are you doing
anything unusual there, such as using a TV display instead?

I'm assuming you haven't done any tweaks to the in-game settings other
than trying to switch to DX10.

He did latch onto the fact the laptop works. And that is fine. What we need to decide though is what is the cause of my main systems issues. And he did throw some more questions in there at least.
I answered back with this..

Yea. When I bought the laptop, I somehow KNEW it was going to work,
thus my reason for wondering why my main system is not working. I have
been working on computers for 20 years myself, and run a really clean
install when I load up my system.

But, the laptop is not meant to game on anyways, but can in travel
mode (like if I leave on a trip and need my Conan fix)

As to a "wired" mouse, I have not. The reason being I do not have any
left in my house...lol.

I have tried multiple brands though, and NEVER load their software.
Use the Windows Vista built in drivers.
I have used Logitech, Microsoft and IOGear mice and used Laser and
Optical. As I also stated, I use a 360 controller...which is my main
mode of control for AoC (I like how it does the combos more
efficiently than keyboard)...but, I have pulled that to make sure it
was not interfering, and it had no effect.

Tonight I will also load the 360 controller on the laptop and that
software to make sure it is not causing issues and leaving some code
behind...but I doubt that.

As to monitor, I use a 1080P 42" LCD. It has a native 1080p
resolution, which I could see causing the 1366x768 resolution issues.
But, DX9 DOES work in that resolution, and works natively (meaning no
scaling needs to take place for it to work), why would DX9 be fine,
but DX10 not be able to scale properly? Plus, would that really effect
the mouse?

This is truly an oddity, and I do not want to give up yet, so any
other hints or ides would help.


So far no answer. But, the cards have been laid out, so lets see how this progresses.

BTW, I have tried my 360 controller on the laptop with no issue. I will try a wireless mouse also, just to eliminate those items as issues.
I have loaded Conan to an alternate system in the house and will transfer my video card to that unit for testing later.

More as our adventure continues.

1 comment:

Doc said...

As one who has built a system from the ground up recently, I know how little bugs can crop up that no one ever thinks of. Your situation, however, has me tapped out.

Keep us updated.