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 Post subject: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2006 7:45 pm 
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It's plagued me for almost 10 years, and I never found someone having experienced it.

Has anyone played the game for many days (somewhere past the 20th maybe) according to the game's clock (and during this time having maxed out all skills, with no cheats employed whatsoever), only to at some point eventually find himself being thrown to back to DOS with an Error 47: Not an object (this is not the error of the slippery slope) almost whenever trying to access the stats screen?  With time, even so much as accessing 'save' from the control panel, or the time of day would bring about the same result, almost as if the stability of the game falls apart.

I experienced this on more than one C.D. version of the game, so I ruled out that problem being caused by a bad C.D.  The only constant was my import character, and I don't know if considering this leads to a dead end, but I wonder if any possible small corruption in an import file may eventually lead to such mayhem after a long period of game-playing.  The only evidence of a quirk to the import file (not created artificially, but a genuinely built character) is an 'open' magic spell having been exported from Q.F.G.3 with its maximum 300 skill level, but at the start of Shadows of Darkness starting for some strange reason at a skill level of the tens of thousands (perhaps nothing more than a small glitch).  I had always wondered if someone who could read an import's file code would be able to see clearly whether the seeds of a game's eventual and inevitable destruction lies in some small corruption in the import file.  The matter of the import file could all just be a red herring for all I know, and the problem could be something entirely different.  I have no reason to suspect a serious corruption in that file.  

Has anyone experienced this peculiar error 47 that finally makes the game unplayable?  If anyone has any solution or suggestion aside from DOSBOX or the belzorash site, I'd appreciate it.  (As for the belzorash site, I have no clue if the patch would solve the problem.  I'm reluctant to start over from scratch yet again to test it since the patch's notes does not explicitly mention this problem or claim to have fixed it.)

Thanks.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2006 8:47 pm 
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There are some new drivers that have been developed by NewRisingSun (a member of these boards, I believe) that fixes most problems with those games on today's computers along with those error messages.

check out this page

http://geocities.com/belzorash/

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2006 10:44 pm 
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Hmm, I've never encountered a problem like this before. If the error only occurs on the Stats screen, then you should be able to beat the game without triggering the error by never looking at the stats screen, although that might kind of hard. Aside from NRS' patches (see above post's link), I would also recommend using DosBox.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2006 3:18 pm 
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I think I experienced this problem so far back as when I owned a Pentium I with something akin to 50 Mhz and possibly even back in the days of my 486.  I'm not sure whether processor speed may necessarily be the problem (but then again, a Pentium I may have perhaps been fast enough to produce errors).

As for avoiding the status screen, like I said, though the problem always begins with the status screen, eventually as game time progressed, the error would be triggered by almost anything from accessing the save screen or the time of day, to moving the character onto a new screen, or even sleeping for the night.  It becomes much too difficult to avoid.

Thanks for your suggestions though.  If anyone has any other ideas, I'm listening.

The fact that no one has ever experienced this continues to have me wonder whether I'm not deluding myself in thinking my import file may be the culprit.  If I could read code, analysing the file may have given me an answer.  In any case DOSBOX did not help me with the relevant savegames.  I could restart my game from scratch using DOSBOX or the belzorash patch, but I am not not willing to start over again from scratch (and I've done this countless more times than I care to remember over many years) and try again unless I am sure that these could help solve the problem, so I'm hoping anyone who has ever run into this problem will post and give me his insight.


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 Post subject: Error
PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2006 3:28 am 
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You're not deluding yourself; I've had the same issues.  As near as I can tell, it's a systemic glitch that carries over in your save games in Windows.  The DOS version have never given me problems.  Unfortunately, saved games cannot cross between DOS and Windows.  If you have a distant save from well before then glitch became untenable, use it.  If not, you're out of luck.  Personally, I'd just recommend using the DOS version and restarting.  Unfortunate, but the easiest solution.

As to NRS's patches, they're only for the DOS version anyway, so as far as I know, there's no repair for a Windows version glitch.  You are getting these glitches in a Windows version, right?  If you are getting them in DOS, it's news to me.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2006 12:34 pm 
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Thanks, but unfortunately no, I am talking about the DOS version, and not Windows.  You're right in that the savegames carry the glitch over after a certain 'point of no return' (I just wish I had some idea of what it is, for pete's sake, that unfailingly triggers said glitch in every new game, and strangely this always quite later on in a game, and not at all in the beginning or early stages).  I had followed that strategy of going as far back as possible in restoring a saved game and sometimes that at best could only postpone the eventual problem.  But as for starting from scratch all over again and building a new save-game archive, that has been done countless times before, and always eventually late in the game (at least with this import character of mine), sometimes after maxing out all possible skills, the problem would sooner or later manifest itself.

The source of the eventual glitch I am suspecting could be in the import file (meaning the character imported from Q.F.G.III, not the savegames).  Or maybe not, but there's a guess right off the bat.

Thanks again though.  Glad to hear someone faced something similiar, even if only in the Windows version.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 2:45 pm 
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Well, it looks like somebody else has fallen a victim.

If you want a glimpse of a really long entry of mine explaining my 'import file' situation, access the link below and scroll down:

http://www.questformoreglory.com/forums ... topic=1622

Brainiac, I have a few questions:

- Did you play the game with the belzorash patch?

- Did you play it with an imported character?  If so, in which Q.F.G. game was it created?

- Is it a hybrid character?  Are its skills more or less maximised?

- Did you notice any relation between the time skills were more or less maxed out and the time you experienced the crashes?

Maybe the answers would shed some light.  Thanks.


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 Post subject: Personal experience
PostPosted: Sat Mar 04, 2006 4:37 am 
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The last save game in Windows I have with the glitch is at Day 7 with a pure Wizard.  The other occasional glitch (the massively overpowered Open spell) is not present.  NRS's patch is applied and my character was originally created in QfG1EGA (and proceeded through II and III).  I don't recall a direct correllation with the Open spell skill glitch or the development of skills in general.  The only pattern I recall was that the error never appeared quickly in the game; it was always several game days (about a week or so) until it started popping up.  I wondered if it was tied to a specific number of times you could open the skill status window, but I could never prove it.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 10:17 am 
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Thanks.  I expected some similiarities, but with your glitch appearing a bit too early and you playing with a pure-class character, I can't find some common ground except that the error fails to appear immediately.

I just managed to find out somewhere else that the spells' skill levels glitches are not peculiar to my imported character.  Apparently, the game itself in general has some trouble with beginning stats and spells.  (These appear to resolve themselves when characters are later imported to Dragon Fire, as I understand it.)  This seems to rule out a connexion with the peculiar 'open spell' glitch.

My best bet, I'm afraid, is to somehow import an artificially created character with maximum 400 level skills into the game, and try to finish the game quickly before things go haywire.


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 Post subject: Re: Personal experience
PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 11:31 am 
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Brainiac wrote:
I don't recall a direct correllation with the Open spell skill glitch or the development of skills in general.


I just checked the transcript of an online chat with the Coles: it looks like that open spell glitch was a general peculiarity and well-known by gamers, and so nothing special.  It doesn't look now to be that a link exists between that and the crashes.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 1:50 pm 
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Easy problem to solve. Play the fighter.  :p


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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Tue Aug 26, 2008 1:54 am 
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A good 2 years have passed since I last raised this matter up, so I am bumping up the thread to try again and see if perhaps someone might be able to provide some useful information this time round. If anyone is interested, please refer to an old thread at http://www.questformoreglory.com/forums ... topic=1622 for a better explanation of the problem by both myself and another individual who has gone through the same trouble, and then post back here if you have any suggestions.


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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Sat Oct 18, 2008 10:12 pm 
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Hi Sam2,

I have the same problem! I'm playing a thief (not a hybrid, no glitches in stats) that I've imported from previous games. Up until this point, the game has run completely smoothly (cd version in DOSbox btw) and I have suffered not one of the bugs reported by countless other gamers. I was feeling pretty smug. And then THIS happens!! :cry

My character's also maxed out on many, but not all of his stats. Strength, health, communication and honour are all below 400. The furthest back any of my saved games goes is to midday on day 15. Here the bug has progressed only as far as giving me an error 47 when I try to look at my character sheet. I was messing around with it when I discovered that it's tendency to do so was extremely inconsistent. Since then, I have been using it and later games to fiddle around and try different things in an effort to purposefully and consistently replicate the bug.

I've found this happens when you:

* run qfg4 and restore a game from the startup menu as usual, then
* do ANYTHING (e.g. look at character sheet, throw a rock, switch to run or sneak mode, rest, basically play the game at all, in any way, no matter how small), then
* decide to restore (to any saved game including the one you were just playing), and then
* at any point look at the time and later look at the character sheet.

Basically you can't play, decide to restore and then check your stats at any point after having checked the time without causing the error. This probably has something to do with how they programmed the memory manager - the slate isn't being wiped clean, so to speak. I'm guessing it's progressive for the same reason.

I have no proper fix for this. The only workaround I have so far is to save, check the time or stats or whatever it is I want, quit and then restore from the startup menu. Then it's like Roswell....nuuuuthing ever happened :alien:

I completely understand your frustration. To work so hard on your character for so many games, only to get the most *obscure* bug possible. Well, I really hope this will help you out. Let me know :)

In commiseration and collusion,
Cora and Clarice


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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Sun Oct 19, 2008 3:46 am 
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I think the best possible solution would be to try importing your wizard, but don't maximize the open spell. I'm sure that the huge open spell amount is causing the problem. You could also try Hex-editing the stat down to something reasonable, that may do the trick. Or you can import a cheated character, but where is the fun in that!


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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2009 10:06 am 
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Just to be clear, the problem is NOT being caused by the glitch with the open spell. I'm not even playing a wizard and I have exactly the same problem. My character imported perfectly and there are no glitches in the stats (all stats that are maxed out have been done so by "practising" them).

Sam2 - I eventually just got a different version of the game and imported again. The bug is so progressive it takes over and the game becomes unplayable no matter what you do. Hope you work it out.


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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2010 6:09 am 
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So has anyone progressed towards a solution of some sort or another with this one?

I had never got it before. But now it's making my "ultimate" character that i've been playing from QFG1VGA and intend to finish Dragon Fire with, unplayable. It's definitely not an installation issue in itself, as I still have saves for an older character which is very similar except that old char never tried to max out skills, I wonder if that has anything to do with it.

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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2010 7:55 am 
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Hey Marcus,

I found a solution to this problem and managed to finish the game quite happily. As I said, unfortunately the only solution is to get a different version of the game and import your character into that version.

The problem is not with the open spell because the bug is replicable for characters who do not have it.

The problem is also not with the maxed out skills themselves as the bug is replicable when playing with characters that do not max out (I have tested this).

The bug is triggered by checking the time or your stats sheet and is progressive, which indicates a memory manager problem. You are partly right as there is an indirect relationship to maxed out skills. Maxing out takes time and time means that the progressive bug, initially small, has more opportunity to snowball.

Other versions of the game do not have this problem, so I would highly recommend giving one of them a try. It worked for me and I have now completed both QFG IV and V, as multiple characters.

This may not have been the answer you wanted, but it is the only solution I have found in my extensive time testing this problem. It is the only solution anyone has found. Why not give it a shot? Let us know how it goes!


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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Fri Jun 04, 2010 5:37 pm 
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Holy hell, I might have to try your solution. I just went back to trying to play this game and started getting this error - on day 2. I think that it started happening so early might have something to do with that I was reorganising my saves a lot.

So which versions of the game do and which do not have this problem?

Also, does your previous analysis mean that if I always restart the game before reloading a save, I'll be OK?

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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Sat Jun 05, 2010 10:28 pm 
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Well, I played a whole game with the following guidelines:

1. I avoided checking the time or stats screens often (still did it a few times in the whole game)
2. I only loaded a save after starting the game afresh. (I saved as often as I wanted, though, which is very often).

I didn't crash except near the end, which I'm not sure if it was this error or just me trying to do something the game didn't expect (I tried to levitate in the Senses cave). So I take this approach as a success, overall.

The next person, of those who've been having this problem, to play through this game, should remove one of those variables during their playthrough, to see if we can isolate it further. For instance, remove point 1 but keep 2: check stats and time a lot, but still don't ever reload a save except from a fresh starting screen. And see if the error starts cropping up or not.

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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 1:52 pm 
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Wow, you're so lucky! Neither of those worked for me, I still always got the bug in the end. The only thing that helped me was switching to the dos version and playing through faster (i.e. in fewer in-game days). Hmmm, actually it looks like you finished the game pretty quickly - how many 'days' did it take you to complete? Also, let us know what version worked for you.

Hope you enjoyed IV - it's one of my favourites. Onward to V! :D


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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 4:19 pm 
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I played the DOS version from the QFG 1-4 Anthology disk, but when I was getting the bug, and in that last playthrough. I remember the plain DOS version not giving me the bug, but that was aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaages ago, so I may be misremembering.

To be 100% clear, I used both those principles at the same time, in one playthrough. (Wasn't sure if that's clear based on your use of the word "neither").

The last save in which I am able to measure time (can't do it inside the Cave) is day 19. As a Paladin, I want to experience the full dream sequence of my beloved dead archmage ;) which is 10 dreams, the other 8 days I'm not sure what I needed for.

However, once I did all the important things in the game except saving Tanya, I passed most of that time by fighting monsters (or letting the Strategy option take care of that for me), healing myself with Paladin healing, and then resting for hours to regenerate stamina. So maybe another method of passing time - like the tons of clicking on things to practice skills such as climbing - would have cycled the buggy part of the code more often. I dunno. But I think it was the approach, always loading fresh and doing very little checking of stats (and none at all of time, I think). After all that seems to agree with your earlier observations on how that bug occurs/accumulates.

And yeah, definitely my favorite. I loved the tarot readings, the dream sequences, the voice acting (with few exceptions)... and it's the only game where I can be the inquisitor and condemn a place of evil to the torch. Flowers and politeness are all good and well, but a true Paladin knows that sometimes the solution is just to Kill It With Fire! ;)

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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 3:11 am 
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Markus Ramikin wrote:
Flowers and politeness are all good and well, but a true Paladin knows that sometimes the solution is just to Kill It With Fire! ;)

Why else do you think they have those swords? :p

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 Post subject: Re: Rare QFGIV Problem
PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 8:52 am 
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No, I meant that I tried it with both of those at the same time when I first encountered the problem. It noticeably slowed the bug, but did not prevent it, or at least not how I was playing the game then. I was definitely on something like day 27 and not at the end yet. See what I mean about being slow!

I think your theory about strategy and what you're doing at what stage of the game could have something to it! I can't see inside the game to see how they've programmed the memory manager, but I imagine the problem is that it ends up pointing to values that are no longer there. Why the issue of changing stats would become more of a problem later on or after certain events is a mystery to me though. I mean, how are they storing or tagging this stuff? I think games after a certain age should just go open source. There'd be hordes of fans ready to pounce and debug! :evil

I love the dream sequence from this game :) I remember what a surprise it was! And meeting Piotr's ghost! And the domovoi suddenly appearing!!! They were very successful in terms of keeping the player delightfully surprised. I have yet to play the wizard in this one and I'm sure there's a thing or two I haven't seen before just waiting for me to discover :)


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