New Features in 4.1

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For the following version look at 4.2 features.

New in Build 982

  • Added several layouts to the browser.
  • Disabled usage of RGBA (32bit) BMP files (BMP does not have an alpha channel by definition).
  • Fixed a crashing issue when closing browser from an ActiveX Control embedded into html web pages;
  • Fixed an issue where object property dialog remained shown, even no object was selected (not in build mode);
  • Improved image processing (gif, png, tif, wfm, etc - all GDI+ formats), if they are in correct size, up to 10 times faster;
  • Added feature to allow sizing models used by particles in all of the 3 coordinates X, Y and Z (by also using the value entered in the 'Size Z' field of the particle property dialog).
  • Fixed object group's children not showing in world, after first getting out of visible range to their parent object;
  • Fixed issue where emptying cache (rightclick download window) might report a fatal disk error, cause cache folders were not rebuilt in time;

New in Build 981

  • Added ini-setting to set object-pick-count limit in [special] max_pick_count=1024 in aworld.ini.
  • Fixed model-reloading could eventually crash in x-Reader when refershing the model's geometry;

New in Build 980

  • Fixed issue were OK button on about screen would not work anymore;
  • Optional display cit#, priv#, world name in userlist for universe admins;

New in Build 979

  • Fixed connection configure dialog not appearing when Config button in splash screen was pressed;

New in Build 978

  • Added options to increase max avatars shown, max near (fully rendered) avatars, and max avatars in chat;
  • Increased max avatars shown to 400, max near (fully rendered) avatars, and max avatars in chat;

New in Build 977

  • Disabled home_url when citizen is set to trial;

New in Build 976

Same as 975, including a minor fix for combining move/rotate and the seq command on jointed avatars/objects.

New in Build 975 (Beta)

  • Added camera collision (requires world build 87).
  • Added world option features for camera collision on/off (requires world build 87).
  • Added world option features for shadows on/off (requires world build 87).
  • Display proper join refuse message when join fails because citizen went off line.
  • Smaller gaps between geometry and shadows (gap is required to avoid z-buffering artifacts).
  • Added list of special commands to rights dialog (requires world build 87).
  • Added "#!seamless on|off" directive for RWX models, for seamless vertex normals and seamless texture wrapping (same as it's used for X-file formated meshes already).
  • Added feature to define the start world by renaming the exe to the name of a world.
  • Fixed matfx tag option.
  • Fixed bug where typing /mE would result in gigantic chat balloon;
  • Fixed shadow artifacts when hit-angle of directional light is flat (dawn/dusk) or if projected mesh exceeds the size of the quasi-shadow-camera.
  • Fixed terrain rendering as 'wall' in distance when terrain-offset is used.

New in Build 974

  • Fixed ATI graphic cards not working properly in the previous build due to a lack of reporting features supported by the graphic card to RenderWare.
  • Fixed an issue with particle emitters; fog was set even the world or current zone had fog disabled (blue masked textures).
  • Fixed a potential issue during loading skinned geometries the first time.
  • Fix for riders could not turn in place when bot controlled.
  • Default values for shadows were not set.
  • Zone and mover icons did not face to the main camera always.
  • Released April 12th 2007

New in Build 973 (Public Release)

  • Added ray intersection to avatar shadows (If there is a solid object inbetween the directional light source and the avatar, no shadow is shown).
  • Released April 2nd, 2007.

For new features and action commands look at material effects, environment subrendering and shadows.

New in Build 972 (Beta)

  • D3DX format support for 3D geometries.
  • Added material effects for all render modes.
  • Hide projection model while rendering subcamera views (e.g. for sign3.rwx).
  • Added envi types to adjust projection view point to bounding box center and to set to dynamic reflection angles.
  • Do not render envi on hidden objects.
  • Fixed issue where delayed loaded textures would override previously set material effects (as in create texture wall7, matfx i.e. after empying cache).
  • Fixed far clip for subrenderers - units are in meters now.
  • Fix for material effects, making sure the model fully loaded and in world before applying effect.
  • Fixed an issue with terrain, not detecting collision properly when changing vertical offset for terrain on the fly without reloading the terrain.
  • Display effective terrain height in selection dialog considering terrain vertical offset.
  • Fixed an issue with the media action command, not working objects without sign or picture tag.
  • Added shadows, for the first for avatars only.

The left image shows a skinned bone animated avatar with a shiny MatFX applied on it's skin fully animated in action. The second image shows dual texture blending and bump mapping applied on cubes. The third image shows an avatar standing in front of a mirror at AWGate looking at his shadow.

New in Build 971 (Beta)

  • Added feature to render particles and other transparent objects behind water surface and/or other transparent objects, controlled by an option setting for each emitter individually.
  • Added D3DX format support for 3D geometries (still in beta).
  • Added material effects like, environment mapping, bump mapping and dual textures.
  • Added environmental subrendering techniques.
  • Added more detailed limbs/bones, in particular for detailed facial expression.

For help and more detailed information look at the envi and the matfx action commands.

The left image shows subrendering onto a plain surface from a parallel perspective (Mirror). The right image shows subrendering in perspective projection. The avatars are skinned bone animated made in Blender loaded from a D3DX formated file.

New in Build 969

  • Added "ltm" option to move command to move the object along its local axes (ltm = local transform matrix).
  • Added capability to load awg-files as ground object, with full action command functionality for all object types except movers (opens endless new possibilities).
  • Updated Renderware DLLs and fixed OpenGL render mode;
  • Applied 'autolook' feature to neighbor avatars;
  • Added skinned avatars to use pick up movers attached to a certain joint/tag;
  • Added "create/activate/bump seq <name> [loop |time=x.y] [translate] [global]" action command to apply animation sequences to any object in world;
  • Added capability for bots to change position of any rider of a mover (requires world server build 86);

New in Build 968

  • Improved avatar fade-out for far avatars.
  • Increased memory buffers for local cached files.
  • Fixed avatar sequence download if seq was downloaded already.
  • Fixed privacy settings been reset when switching citizen account on the fly.
  • Fixed several issues with grouped objects (AWG files).
  • Apply animation sequence to riders as soon seq-download is done, also if the rider isn't moving at that time.
  • Fixed object refresh when set to zero.
  • Fixed 'move reset' command going through 2nd wait cycle before restarting.
  • Improved loading of currently used movers.
  • Increased waypoint limit for x, y and z coordinates to 320 meters each, but reduce maximum speed when distance is more than 100 and 200 meters accordingly to 75 and 50 meters/second.
  • Fixed issue media not playing when switching worlds.
  • Fixed potential crashing bug on 'empty cache'.
  • Fixed an issue where textures with masks did not render sometimes (rare).

New in Build 967

  • Performance improvements for downloads.
  • Performance improvements for rendering sign text.
  • Added ground models and HUD elements to priority downloads.
  • Smoother avatar position updates.
  • Improve speed of avatar re-order (switching far-model to avatar and vice versa).
  • Fixed position of balloon text for avatars carrying pick-up-items.
  • Decrease visibility faster than increase visible range.
  • Added "Cached"-label to download display.
  • Miscellaneous bug fixes

New in Build 966

  • New field in the Universe Options
  • Fix to ultra cell data limit
  • Miscellaneous bug fixes
  • Added a new "group" command. This can be used to load object groups (AWG files) from the object path.
create group <name>
Where <name> is the filename of a zipped AWG file located on the object path in the groups subfolder. Note, no encroachment can be determined for such group's children, nor these children objects would increase the cell data limit.

New in Build 964

  • Fixed sync option with the move command, was broken in prev 2 builds.
  • Made "move gravity" command framerate independent.
  • Fixed collision detection (bump) not working, if flying is disabled in a world and the MOVE_UP key is pressed.
  • Added functionality to block invites while riding a mover, if current mover has "Disabled Teleports" set.

New in Build 963

  • Added a new "radius" option to the visible command. This can be used to remove objects from the scene based on the viewer's distance from the object.
create visible off radius=10
This would cause an object to be "visible off" (hidden) until the viewer gets within ten meters of the object. This can greatly boost users' frame rates in heavily built areas, and is particularly useful for removing small items from the scene which are not normally visible at a distance or in hiding objects that are located within buildings that you are not able to see when outside.
  • Added the ability to save and load groups of objects. When building, if you select two or more objects a new button, "Save Object Group" will appear. When pressed, this will prompt you for a filename where the names and positions of the currently selected objects will be stored. This file will have the extension of ".awg" by default. When you want a copy of those objects, just select one object in the world and then press the "Load Object Group" button. The browser will prompt you to select a previously saved .awg file. It will then build the objects described in that file, centered around the currently selected object. Note that when building large numbers of objects it may take several seconds for them to appear. Also note that if you want to center all the objects at the ground level, make sure to change the Pivot Y (Up-down) to an altitude of 0 prior to saving your object group.
create move 0 10 0 time=5 gravity
Using this option will cause the object to move to the destination and then begin falling. In this case it will move up for five seconds, then free-fall for five seconds. Note that the object will not collide with scenery or bounce off of other objects, it will simply fall through other objects until the time runs out, when it will return to its original position. If you want the object to stop on the ground, you will need to use the wait and time command. For example:
move 4 20 0 gravity time=2 wait=5
makes the object go up sideways and then down stopping on the ground.
  • There is a new "lock" command
activate lock, move 0 10 0 time=5
Using this option you lock the command to the owner of the object. Other people that try and use the object command will not be able to. Great for locking doors that only you can open.

One can also use the following command to distribute rights to activate locked objects to other citizens. For example:

activate lock owners=59991:1:2, move 0 10 0 time=5
The above code would allow only E N Z O, AWLD, and AWLD2 citizens to use the object this command is on, because their citizen numbers are placed into the command in the respective area. Colon signs (:) must be placed between citizen numbers for this action to take effect.
  • Mover detach button
Click on the new mover detach button in the toolbar and you can detach from any mover you are currently riding. One can also assign the Detach Mover Button to a key, using the Configure Controls option in the Options menu.
You now have a new field in the mover column, it is called "pick-up-item", this allows you to set an object to be picked up by you or other users.
There is a new world data cell limit called "Ultra" which allows a lot more objects to be built in a cell.
  • New Zone block teleport/join option
You can now create zones that do not allow teleports or invite join requests. This is useful for creating a building where people are only allowed to enter through a door rather than teleporting in.

Initial Release

  • Object Properties Dialog: The classic Object Properties Dialog been replaced. It is now a dockable, dynamic dialog that changes based on what is selected. You can now see the exact position of a selected object in the world, and if you are a caretaker you may edit this value directly.
  • Movers: Movers are a new object type that can be used to create many types of vehicles.
  • Particles: Particle Emitters are a new object type that can be used to create many types of special effects.
  • Zones: Users may define zone objects, which can be used to define a 3d spatial volume where the normal world properties are replaced or changed.
  • Camera Objects: Users may place special camera objects in the scene to create dramatic or interesting camera views.
  • Camera Action command: An action command has been added to allow the placement of the camera in the scene ("create camera location=<name>").
  • Clear Cache Option: In the downloads window, a user with building rights may right-click and select "clear local cache" in order to force their browser to dump all downloaded items and re-download everything. This is useful for world owners who are trying to find and fix broken objects or downloads, or who are working on the avatar list.
  • The rotate and move commands now have a new "smooth" argument, which will cause objects using these commands to accelerate and decelerate instead of abruptly changing directions.
  • Build Mode: Caretakers now have a special build mode available to them. In build mode, all hidden objects are shown, precise movement is on, the object properties box is always open, and collision is disabled. Flying is enabled, and movement is simplified. Particles are hidden, and zone shapes are revealed. This will make building significantly easier. Build Mode is also enabled for standard builders, although in this case, the object properties box is always open, precise movement is on, all hidden objects are shown, and collision is disabled. In Public Building Worlds, where the builder is using Build Mode, and flying is off, it will not be enabled, except for when a Caretaker is using this mode.
  • New Interface: The various controls in the browser are now floating, dockable windows. The interface is more streamlined, and more attractive.
  • Object Icons: The old "black triangle", which was a placeholder object used when an object was not available, has been replaced with new object icons. These icons should give the builder a better idea of why they are not seeing the object they expect. An hourglass indicates the object is still waiting to be downloaded. An "error" icon indicates the download failed, and the object is not available. Other icons are used as markers for the various new object types, since many do not have a model associated with them.
  • New "autolook" feature in the avatar list.
  • Ability to break the avatar list into categories.
  • The World Rights dialog now offers the ability to grant rights to ranges of citizens, or to deny rights to individual citizens.
  • Users Tab: A new tab has been added to the tab controls that will list all users currently logged in. Note that this feature will probably not be available in the regular ActiveWorlds universe.
  • Personal Avatars: Personal Avatars allow you to take a unique avatar to any world that chooses to allow them.
  • Downloads Window: The downloads window will now list all objects queued for download. It will show an icon indicating the type of thing being downloaded (texture, avatar, animation, model, etc) and what priority the thing is for download. World owners can now have this list all failed downloads so they can quickly spot missing items.
  • Avatar List sub-menus: World owners may now have items listed in the avatar list without the "geometry" tag. These entries will act as submenus to contain subsequent items. This means that world owners can sort the avatar list however they choose.
  • Downslide: It is now possible to slide downhill. See the World Features for more info.
  • Fog tinting: A new effect has been added to make fog seem thicker without the problem of limiting visibility in your world. See the World Features for more info.
  • Terrain Offset: It is now possible to globally shift all of the terrain in your world up or down. See the World Features for more info.
  • Send bump event: World owners may enable this option so that bots can detect when users have run into objects with bump commands, allowing the bot to take action when this happens.
  • Global events: Using the "global" parameter in object commands can cause the action (say, clicking on an object) to be sent to all other users in the area. This means that when you click on a door to open it, others will see it open. Global events must be enabled for this to work. See the World Features for more info.
  • Expanded terrain elevation range: The old terrain limits have been expanded so that now terrain may be a kilometer above or below the zero altitude point. Also, the number of allowed terrain textures has been expanded to 500.
  • VoIP: Active Worlds now offers VoIP, or Voice Over IP. This option will allow user to voice chat with one another in worlds where it is enabled.
  • Screenshot: A hotkey has been added to take a screenshot of the current 3d view and save it as a JPG in the Active Worlds directory.
  • Support for more image formats: GIF and PNG files are allowed as textures. The browser even supports animated and masked versions of these formats. When using GIF and PNG files as textures, they must be used as "create texture file.png", rather than "create texture file" (this means that the user must suffix the texture name with the file type).
  • Autolook: World owners may add the "autolook" option to the avatar list. This will cause the avatar to attempt to turn its head the direction the user is looking while keeping the feet aimed the direction they are moving. The browser will animate the eyes, neck, and back together to perform the turn, so these tags must be present in the avatar or this option will not work. This can produce a very interesting and lifelike effect in humanoid avatars. Not recommended for non human avatars.
  • Presets: Zones, cameras, and particle emitters all support presets, which let you store complex objects for use elsewhere.
  • Maximum flying and building height has been increased to 1200.