Save & exit time

T72on1

Diabloii.Net Member
One thing that bugged me while doing the TC3 hunting tournament, is that I spent quite some time looking at the S/E screen after I ... well, saved and exited. I haven't ever measured it (I should have, and will do that next time), but I'd guess that it was somewhere in the 3 - 4 second range. So not terribly long, but a lot when my you know that my average run time for Rakanishu was 12.5 seconds according to run counter, so S/E and creating a new game included.

I have a fast machine, with my games installed on a SSD, and ever since I have this one my loading times have greatly improved. Loading isn't an issue either, as that goes within the blink of an eye.

I also was surprised to find out that the long S/E time isn't happening on every character. It's already shorter on my to-be-99 Sorc, and when I was doing some test runs with a naked lvl 86 Dancer Assassin in normal, S/E would be instant, just as fast as loading a new game.

Anyone have a clue what might cause this? How long does it take you to S/E?
 

Grape

Diabloii.Net Member
My loading times have been varying over the years.

Few things that may shorten times: deleting the .map file from save folder. Moving away the screenshots. And what has been the most useful for me: using "-ns" in diablo 2's target line commands. (And maybe windowed too, haven't played without -w for a long long time.)
 

T72on1

Diabloii.Net Member
Good you mention the -ns command ... I tried that too, but it didn't seem to have any effect.

What really surprised me was that the S/E time was different for different characters. Something like screenshots in the same folder should have the same effect on all characters.

I've never played in windowed mode actually. What's the benefit?
 

NanoMist

Diabloii.Net Member
This also happened to me in my Andariel runs. I also have an SSD with nothing else on my computer hogging resources. In fact, CPU usage goes down to near 0% during my 7 second wait time. S/E is instant on my assassin running LK.

My first suspicion was that it was related to game up-time, but I would be able to S/E immediately at different up times in town. I did some testing and the S/E time increased the more I traveled through maps prior to exiting.

S/E in town - instant
S/E in Cat 2 - 1 second or less
S/E in Cat 3 - 4-5 seconds (my Cat 3 map is large)
S/E in Cat 4 entrance - 6-7 seconds
S/E in Cat 4 Andariel's death - 7-8 seconds
S/E in Cat 4 with 30 seconds of doing nothing after Andariel's death - instant

For me it seems to be map related. The only thing I haven't tried from Grape's suggestions was deleting the .map file from the save folder, so this could be it? or even the .ma0, .ma1, etc files? I hope this only resets the revealed areas of the mini-map and not the actual map itself.
 

T72on1

Diabloii.Net Member
I'd think deleting the .ma0, .ma1, ... files, would reset the map itself.

Interesting theory and testing. However, I would have rather long (although not 7 seconds, I'd think) S/E times running only Rakanishu (so only 1 map revealed, not much time spent), while I could immediately S/E with my naked Dancer, who would take the Cold Plains waypoint, check for the cave entrance and then uncover part of the Cave map to see if Coldcrow could spawn near the entrance. So she spent far more time, and there was one more map involved.

Really strange ...
 

Grape

Diabloii.Net Member
I don't remember anymore why I started to play windowed. Might have actually been partially about loading times. And then, it's faster and easier for me to multitask while windowed. Getting out from D2 by just clicking with mouse out of the game window is nice for me. (I think some use glide wrapper to prevent that happening actually?)

It takes a little time to get used to playing windowed, but after that I haven't even thought about going back to full window.
 

NanoMist

Diabloii.Net Member
I do play in window mode. But our issue is not the load time, but the save & exiting time. It's only a few seconds, but significant when runs are very short. I don't recall this issue when I did Pindle runs either.

I believe glide wrapper has a mouse capture option for windowed mode, so users have that choice.
 

pharphis

Diabloii.Net Site Pal
I do play in window mode. But our issue is not the load time, but the save & exiting time. It's only a few seconds, but significant when runs are very short. I don't recall this issue when I did Pindle runs either.

I believe glide wrapper has a mouse capture option for windowed mode, so users have that choice.
Yes. I would consider windowed mode unplayable without the mouse capture, tbh. Unless you don't want to maximize your teleport distance? ;p

Windowed mode is good for when you want to play D2 or read a chat window on the side (shoutouts to hamachi spam)

Also, deleting the map files doesn't actually change your map. It simply deletes how much of the map you have explored.

sometimes S&E depends on what's going on around you. For example, I would get notoriously poor saving times when the superchest near eldritch (act 5) had a lot of burning archers shooting at me.
 

Grape

Diabloii.Net Member
I do play in window mode. But our issue is not the load time, but the save & exiting time. It's only a few seconds, but significant when runs are very short. I don't recall this issue when I did Pindle runs either.

I believe glide wrapper has a mouse capture option for windowed mode, so users have that choice.
Ah, yeah I meant the s&e times also by "load times". Should've been clearer with that :)

I have had similar experiences with those as you. Varying over map/char and/or at least when waiting for a while doing nothing (leading to a shorter save & exit).

Last time I had problems with annoyingly long save & exit, -ns helped. I hoped it would've helped T72on1 too, but maybe there's something else to it this time. Weird.
 

NanoMist

Diabloii.Net Member
I did try -ns and it shaved off a second. Maybe. :confused:

Yes. I would consider windowed mode unplayable without the mouse capture, tbh. Unless you don't want to maximize your teleport distance? ;p

Windowed mode is good for when you want to play D2 or read a chat window on the side (shoutouts to hamachi spam)

Also, deleting the map files doesn't actually change your map. It simply deletes how much of the map you have explored.

sometimes S&E depends on what's going on around you. For example, I would get notoriously poor saving times when the superchest near eldritch (act 5) had a lot of burning archers shooting at me.
Yep, I have windowed mode in order to watch shows on the side.
I do go back to full screen if I'm 100% focused on D2.


And thanks to everyone that have helped so far.
 

Brak

Diabloii.Net Member
sometimes S&E depends on what's going on around you. For example, I would get notoriously poor saving times when the superchest near eldritch (act 5) had a lot of burning archers shooting at me.
I've definitely noticed something similar running RoF. If I S&E midcast (even teleport) the game will usually get hung up.
 

Friiser

Diabloii.Net Member
In Civ III you can set the .ini file to skip the intro. It would be nice if that type of thing could be done for D2.
 

Gripphon

Diabloii.Net Member
Saving times definitely depend on how long do you play that session. That is especially noticeable while running Pindle. If you kill him inside X seconds, saving time might be long. If you kill him slower than X seconds, saving times might be much faster. Where is that line is hard to estimate, but I know when you kill him in like 15 seconds, you won't get out without waiting 3-4 seconds of saving time. If you kill him in like 21 seconds, you are out very fast. That kind of behavior is only reason why people don't kill Pindle in like 13 seconds, cuz their save time is messed up.

Plenty of areas are very similar. Some things are also constant, at least I think. Whoever I asked, when you go into act 3 town, then take waypoint to act 4 and save, it will be long save. It is annoying when I missclick waypoint target with Travincal sorc and instead of going back to act 4 to save, I click act 3 town and then I know when I go to act 4, saving time will be long. If I don't missclick and from Travincal go to town 4 directly, save is fast. It might depend on what is loaded in that session of playing etc.
 

helvete

Diabloii.Net Member
For a rakanishu run, try taking the WP back to town before S/E. Save time seems to be "recording" for a little while if there is a lot going on, might be bnet related server/client issue left over from olden days.
 

logoutzero

Diabloii.Net Member
In Civ III you can set the .ini file to skip the intro. It would be nice if that type of thing could be done for D2.
-skiptobnet

You will add an 'ESC' keystroke to your startup sequence, but overall less than Blizzard and Blizzard North screens.

Can be a pain when playing not the current patch, as it will check for current version every time, but try it out, see if you like it.

Also, playing with -w eliminates all cinematics, both opening and when switching acts.

As to the OP:
Moving screenshots and GoMule backups out of the DII directory, and playing with -w-ns, I have instant S&E under probably 98% operating conditions. Occasional hiccups to be expected with such dated software being run on a more up-to-date operating system.

Also, if you are playing from a disc install and not digital (and I think they may have patched this anyway, but I play all patches so I do this by habit) try manually Copy/Paste-ing the .MPQ files found on the Expansion Disc into the main DII directory. A lot of the S&E time can be related to scanning for the next sound to play. Even though -ns should force the game not to even load the sound drivers at all, the program may still search for the song to play, then just not play it.

I don't remember which ones are copied over on installation. You can either scan your install directory for the ones on the disc, and grab the ones that are missing (mainly D2XMUSIC and D2XTALK if memory serves) or just grab them all. Just be sure NOT to overwrite any of them, or be forced to re-patch.
 
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Silver Moon

Diabloii.Net Member
The only thing I have noticed is that when I save and exit after killing rakinishu in the stoney field it is instant or less than a second. If I choose to go into the tristram portal to kill griswold and try to save and exit it takes 3 or 4 seconds. Maybe someone has already explained why that is in this thread, but I am honestly too novice to understand most of what is posted.
 

T72on1

Diabloii.Net Member
I did a few more test runs with my Paladin, through various parts of act 1, different bosses or areas, short, long, ... Didn't seem to make a difference. Then I did the same with my to-be-99er and my other tounament character. Whatever I did, the result remained the same. Luckily on both characters, S/E time was almost non-existent.
 

ioupainmax

Diabloii.Net Member
Resurrecting this old thread as I've been doing some testing lately.

I've been playing bnet HC ladder in a group with @T72on1 for the last year or so, so I didn't play SP for a long time (you won't have seen any updates from me in a while). Trying to play SP after bnet gave me some eye strain as SP is limited to 25 FPS and I noticed the mouse was a little jerky. In order to sort out this jerkiness issue, I tried a bunch of different things with and without Sven's Glide wrapper:
  • Full screen mode
  • Windowed mode
  • Full screen mode with Glide
  • Windowed mode with Glide
Without Glide:
Windowed mode had the most significant positive impact in reducing load times; both on loading a character and also save & exit - being near instant. Going back to normal full screen feels so slow with even the initial character loading time seeming noticeably long. The problem is of course that windowed mode without glide, means your mouse is not captured so you can accidentally click outside - not good on HC.

-ns didn't make much of a difference, at least not noticeable to me.

The jerkiness is there but it isn't too bad.

Since I wanted the speed benefit of windowed mode but also mouse capture, I then tried Glide.

With Glide:
Glide also reduced the load times in both Full screen and windowed mode.

However, for some reason the jerkiness was more pronounced. I tried a variety of settings/options and though some were better than others, I did end up getting a headache after playing for a short time.

Funnily enough, I needed captured mouse in full screen with glide (perhaps due to 2 monitors?).

While Glide is decent, I still haven't found the goldilocks settings that are 'juuuust right' for me...yet!

----------------
Note about Screenshots & .map files:
I don't think that screenshots and .map files have that much impact, I played with 1 brand new character in a fairly fresh install with zero other characters or map files and load/save & exit times on Full Screen without glide were still fairly long. Even using an SSD, though my computer is not a gaming rig or high end in any way.
----------------
Note about Jerkiness:
I notice this most in stash and inventory screens, but overall, it seems more noticeable on horizontal movement. I've tried various settings like with and without vsync. With vsync is definitely better because it stops the mouse jumping about when you open the inventory or character screens, but the horizontal movement is still jerky.
----------------

Conclusion:
I prefer to play in full screen as it is larger, easier to see and feels more immersive.

Right now, I'm trying to weigh up the benefits to load times vs the drawbacks to eye strain that glide gives me in Full Screen mode. I noticed that many Twitch Streamers don't use Glide at all and instead opt to just use plain old windowed mode, so I wonder if this jerkiness is just a side effect of Glide in general?

Can anyone share their set-ups in terms of:
  • Glide - Yes/No?
  • Full screen or windowed mode?
  • Do you notice jerky movement?
I'm open to suggestions, but I feel like I've tried every permutation and combination and something feels...off
 

art_vandelay

Diabloii.Net Member
I thought this was interesting so I tried the glide wrapper and windowed mode myself. For reference I play with these settings usually:
  • -w enabled at all times
  • Window 'maximized', i.e. it fills out the screen without stretching the image.
  • -ns since recently; disabled when I want the game sound for an actual playthrough ;)
  • Lighting Quality: medium
  • Blended Shadows: Off
  • Perspective: Off
  • no Glide Wrapper
  • v1.14d, Singling, RWM and -direct switch
  • 9 year old laptop (where do I change this particular setting? :D)
Why play with medium Lighting Quality? I assume that all extra graphics stuff only makes the game slower, however when you set this to 'low' the light radius around monsters isn't displayed properly and actually appears to be smaller than it actually should be which can result in a harder time identifying bosspacks.

This setup has been ideal for me so far because it doesn't lag at all (unless I strain my computer in other ways...) and I can get some very good S&E times for a lot of maps. I sometimes get annoyed by clicking outside the window but due to the resizing it doesn't happen as much.

For the extended teleport trick I right click next to the skill tree, hold the mouse button and then pull my mouse to the upper right corner until I leave the game screen. I do not know wether it is necessary to leave the game screen or if it suffices to just hold it in the corner of the skill tree, anyone care to enlighten me? :p

***

So for 'fun' I tried out fullscreen mode just now. I instantly got a constant lag, teleporting feels incredibly slow and I noticed that there are a lot more things being rendered, i.e. glowing lines around objects/monsters, color changes for certain skills. Here's an example:
Screenshot004.jpg
Notice the red tinge where the curse was cast by the OK. I NEVER see this in windowed mode.

An excursion to the Den of Evil gave me the same effect with the fire balls of the fallen shamans, they would change the colors around them just like the curse in the picture.

Even worse my S&E as well as my load times immediately became several seconds long. The game itself takes longer to open and exit as well which is minor but still annoying if you wanted to rush several characters.

I tried glide wrapper briefly as well but it still felt 'laggy' to say the least. In any case I doubt I'll switch from my usual setup. Somehow it seems to be able to circumvent certain effects from displaying and that can only help. After all the game looks markedly better without these color shifts everytime a skill is cast. :rolleyes:


As for your observation about twitch streamers: If they didn't use windowed mode they would have to tab out of their game every single time they wanted to change anything in OBS or another program. Tabbing out, at least for me has a noticable lag, the same as starting the game up in the first place. Would you really want to do that just because you wanted to skip a song in a playlist? I'd rather not...

***

I also put a 1GB file in my save folder, changed it's name to start with an 'a' and it's extension to be 'd2s'. Didn't change a thing, maybe that is TOO naive a test though.

However I do know for a fact that the game takes a very long time loading big character type files. That's however related to stuff I did before I restarted, so maybe it's not exactly a good idea to share it here. ;)

In the case of all the character files I would assume the following: The data structure wasn't designed with huge amounts of data in mind. They assumed small stashes and constantly deleted map files (i.e. the battle.net experience) and hence didn't care to optimize them for large sizes. After all we know that having large GoMule stashes can lead to lag when opening them. (Similarly: sorting within them is laggy, but who optimizes searchability in a file format that was supposed to hold less than 200 items max?)
 
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