Dealing with tons of save game files is a pain!

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Pythagoras
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Dealing with tons of save game files is a pain!

Post by Pythagoras »

One of the biggest hassles for me when playing any TBS such as Wesnoth is organizing my save games. For example, I don't shoot straight through a campaign, I go back and replay old scenarios to see if I can do better. I may play "Seige of Elensefar" 3 or 4 times until I am happy. During this time I want to save each of the different tries. To do this I have to be very conscientious to not overwrite previous files by saving with the default file name. Also, in loading, the flat listing of files can be unending. I feel like I'm a filing clerk sometimes.

I beleive there should be better handling and organization built into the default location and file name of the saves. I'd like to see the default file name text include the date/time. It would also be nice if there was some automatic file/folder organization based on campaign and scenario. For example, in my dream come true, Wesnoth would prompt me with the following whenever I went to (or it asked me if I wanted to) save a game:

"/<CAMPAIGN>/<SCENARIO>/<DATE-TIME>"

I understand there are people out there who would rather organize this stuff by themselves, but I feel that many people would be happier if they didn't have to figure out what to call each save file. Also, it only would impact the default text placed in the save dialogue, it would not eliminate the ability to save to wherever the user wanted.

Does anyone else have any other ideas to alleviate this problem?
scott
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Post by scott »

I think organizing by campaign folders is as far as I want to go.

Beyond that, I think each player can be responsible for organizing scenario saves by date and time because I believe that such a feature would be rarely used. I could be wrong. I think that most people don't replay scenarios 3-4 times and want to keep each replay (do you watch every replay?). I revisit scenarios maybe every couple of months for certain campaigns, and for something so infrequent it's easier just to type in a unique name.
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irrevenant
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Post by irrevenant »

I think it might be useful to include the abbreviated Campaign names in the default save titles, eg. "HttT-Blackwater Port Turn 1". I, for one tend to have a couple of different campaigns going simultaneously and it would help me keep track...
Pythagoras
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Post by Pythagoras »

scott wrote:I think organizing by campaign folders is as far as I want to go.

Beyond that, I think each player can be responsible for organizing scenario saves by date and time because I believe that such a feature would be rarely used. I could be wrong. I think that most people don't replay scenarios 3-4 times and want to keep each replay (do you watch every replay?). I revisit scenarios maybe every couple of months for certain campaigns, and for something so infrequent it's easier just to type in a unique name.
My problem is that its so easy to overwrite something on accident that I want to keep. If somehow the default file name had the date-time I wouldn't have the problem. I'm just sort of nerdy in that I would love to have old savs around to see how (if) I've improved.

Honestly, its a convenience issue. It would be nice to have and I'd think easy to implement some minor level of organization. At the least, It would be great to have some level of time-stamping in the file name.
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turin
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Post by turin »

Obviously, the ideal solution is to sort the saves by campaign, and possibly (although I don't think so) by date. Personally, I think that is one of the features we must have in by 2.0*. ;)


*: Along with an improved campaign server, different rooms in the MP server lobby, MP moderators put into place to stop unacceptable behavior, and the perennial turin's-the-only-one-who-cares-about-this-request CAN WE PLEASE HAVE [role] USE SUF?!?! (:P)
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Pythagoras
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Post by Pythagoras »

turin wrote:Obviously, the ideal solution is to sort the saves by campaign, and possibly (although I don't think so) by date. Personally, I think that is one of the features we must have in by 2.0*. ;)


*: Along with an improved campaign server, different rooms in the MP server lobby, MP moderators put into place to stop unacceptable behavior, and the perennial turin's-the-only-one-who-cares-about-this-request CAN WE PLEASE HAVE [role] USE SUF?!?! (:P)
Well if I'm the only one that cares, that's all fine and good. I understand this game is not made for me. I personally just get tired in all my TBS's of having to think about what to call a save game and figure out and maintain some organization scheme. It would be nice if I didn't have to think about it.
Tearfang
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My Ideas

Post by Tearfang »

IMHO a standard open file dialogue box that allows you to *open folders* is the best improvement that could be made to the save system. This would allow for users to create meaningful custom organization schemes.

Why I personally would care
I like to have LOTS of saved games. There was a time when I'd have to save game for every turn in order for no one important to die... (I’m a bit better now having just completed medium HttT without in any in-mission reloads last week) Still I have a massively large number of save games. In fact the number got so large that when I tried to open a saved game the game would stall for a number of seconds just to open the list. I have since moved various groups of saves into different folders to speed this up. However, I have to manually move them back to C:\Program Files\Wesnoth\userdata\saves before I can open them. If I could use folder from the open dialogue I’d create folders for each mission too.

Suggestion for Save dialogue
1. Always default to an unused file name by appending a dash followed by an incrementing number to the end of the name. For example if "The_Elves_Besieged_Turn_1" is already taken "The_Elves_Besieged_Turn_1-1" would be the default name. This avoids Pythagoras’s overwrite problem cleanly, without anyone who doesn’t play the scenario over and over again being force to use more complex names. I prefer this to time-date-stamping the file names because it results in short names while still preserving save chronology. This could possibly have a preference option as a check box somewhere ?save tab? labeled “Don’t default to filenames in use�

2. Optionally append campaign abbreviation in front of the name (as irrevenant suggested earlier to be automatic). This could be done through a checkbox every time someone saves or an option in preferences. Or both where the preference option sets the default for the checkbox.
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Eleazar
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Post by Eleazar »

irrevenant wrote:I think it might be useful to include the abbreviated Campaign names in the default save titles, eg. "HttT-Blackwater Port Turn 1". I, for one tend to have a couple of different campaigns going simultaneously and it would help me keep track...
If we can't have different campaigns automatically saved in different folders, I think this is a great, and easy to implement improvement. I don't see why it should be optional. Who is going to hate having "HttT-" at the front of the savegame names?
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WildPenguin
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Post by WildPenguin »

Eleazar wrote: Who is going to hate having "HttT-" at the front of the savegame names?
I already use that prefixing system for save names, in an attempt for some sort of organisation. Less typing, more playing sounds great to me. :D
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Post by torangan »

Eleazar wrote:Who is going to hate having "HttT-" at the front of the savegame names?
Just about everyone playing a translated version where HttT doesn't match the name of the campaign at all? Of course, one might simply take the translated name, split it at word boundaries and take the first character of each word. This will only get a little messy for RTL languages and asian languages without clear word boundaries.
So no, it's not a trivial task in a multilingual world.
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Viliam
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Post by Viliam »

I also think that a generic "choose your subdirectory" save dialog would be best. The dialog should not be able to leave the savegame directory (to prevent some users from saving their games on strange places, maybe even overwriting something useful), but users could organize their saves as they wish. Because there is too many different ways to organize.

0) There may be more people playing on the same computer under the same login name; it would be nice to have separate directories for everyone.

1) Almost everyone will organize by campaigns. But some may prefer to have subdirectory as a name of campaign ("Heir to the Throne"); some as an abbreviation ("HttT" - the file path length can be limited, so we should not waste it), some would prefer to include a number of campaign ("1. Heir to the Throne") to keep the directories ordered correctly. Some users might want to save unofficial campaigns to "unofficial" directory.

2) If someone is playing the campaign on different difficulties, they may want to have a subdirectory "easy" / "hard". If someone is playing the campaign again, or with a different strategy (trying to maximize gold; trying to maximize unit levels; trying not to lose any unit), they may want to have a new directory.

3) If someone is saving each turn, they may want to separate scenarios to different directories. If someone has only one save in the end of scenario, this is not necessary... but in both cases, it would be nice to include a number of scenario ("1. Elves Besieged"). But the number of scenario may differ, as some scenarios are optional.

So, it is really not possible to please everyone with one given scheme, but it is possible to please most people with the directory browser in load/save dialog. The save dialog should remember the last subdirectory saved to, and should by default open in this subdirectory. The load dialog should display the date and time when the game was saved; this is a very useful information (I usually want to quickly know "is this the game I saved yesterday?").
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Post by ott »

There is quite a bit of context here, no need to reinvent the wheel.

Note that the "Load Game" menu allows sorting savefiles by date or by filename (click on the header).

Deleting saved games is the subject of patch https://gna.org/patch/?func=detailitem&item_id=457 as discussed in http://www.wesnoth.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=6923 although this patch is unlikely to be included in the official source code since it is likely to generate a lot of unhappiness from people who accidentally delete files they didn't mean to.

Subfolders/directories for savegames is the subject of feature request https://gna.org/bugs/?func=detailitem&item_id=4150

There was an earlier general discussion about the savegame dialog in http://www.wesnoth.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=4277
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Post by Thrawn »

I just save the campaign I am currently playing as 1, deviantions as 1a, etc, and I really only have 3-4 save files, and that seems to work fine
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irrevenant
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Post by irrevenant »

ott wrote:There is quite a bit of context here, no need to reinvent the wheel.

Note that the "Load Game" menu allows sorting savefiles by date or by filename (click on the header).
I find that, as I tend to be playing a number of campaigns at once, neither of these sort modes is very helpful. I also used to save-load a lot, which resulted in lots of files all mixed in together. Being able to sort by campaign as well would help, but it's really a bandaid.

We really need to be able to create and save in folders of our own naming. In addition to solving the problem of organising by campaign, it's the only practical way to manage saved games for multipke people on the one PC (unless you want to introduce profiles which seems overkill and more work).
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Post by Thrawn »

irrevenant wrote: We really need to be able to create and save in folders of our own naming. In addition to solving the problem of organising by campaign, it's the only practical way to manage saved games for multipke people on the one PC (unless you want to introduce profiles which seems overkill and more work).
can't this already be done, or am I getting confused?
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this goes for they're/their/there as well
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