I haven’t updated in a long time and it’s because the battle with snail brains has been raging on. Over the past few weeks I have run into several weird behavioural problems, including but not limited to:
- Snail over-eagerly cannibalizing each other
- Immature snails not only mating but getting pregnant
- Snails having no motivation to go out and search for food
Maybe it’s time to run this remotely
Part of the problem, I’ve realized, is that my server uptime is not consistent. I am running everything on my MacBook Air - as soon as I close the lid everything stops. However, my recurring events (like energy depletion) are not based on counting uptime - they are based on hard timestamps. If I close my laptop at 7am, reopen it at 10pm, and there was an energy depletion event scheduled at 9pm for all snails, the event runs immediately. That’s hours of eating that the snails have missed out on. In some cases they just don’t have time to eat before they’re drained of energy.
This has been leading me to think that maybe I should deploy this in a remote environment - namely AWS, which already has the bare bones setup for the website (but nothing actually deployed). Problem is I have no idea what kinds of costs this is going to rake up on AWS. Am I going to end up with a giant bill? I know there’s a way to put a cost limit to the service, so maybe I’m just scared of knowing. In addition everything is just so much more hassle when working remotely.
Scheduled food delivery
To make it easier for myself and any other potential user, I added a scheduled delivery service to the world store. You can register to receive regular food boxes for your snails, to be placed into either a specific jar, your closet, or distributed evently amongst all of your jars. Available frequency are once a day, twice a day, or once a week.
Right now you can only have one delivery scheduled at a time, but I actually want to change this to let people schedule as many as they want.
This has already helped a bit since I don’t have to keep running to the store every day to dump more food into the jar.
You may remember (probably not) that specific jars are “breeding” jars. Those are the only jars that allow snails to mate within them - the rest suppress the mating instinct by default. Another feature I wanted myself is being able to stop snails from mating in the breeding jars on a temporary basis. So I’ve implemented an arousal suppressant option (that is currently not very user friendly due to the uninutitive naming, but it works):
I’m also in the middle of an accidental wolfling run of sorts. Two snails bred into a bunch of snails. The parent snails have long since starved due to some of the bugs I mention above. I guess we’ll see how long their baby snails last! There have been a couple of generations so far.