It is currently May 18th, 2021, 11:05 pm

Game mode revisited

Changes made during the Rainmeter 4.4 beta cycle.
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Brian
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Game mode revisited

Post by Brian »

Due to all the positive feedback we have received about "Game mode", we have decided to improve things. ;-)

Hopefully, these changes will address some of the concerns everyone has with game mode, and provide a solution that works for most users.

First a little background.
The initial purpose of "Game mode" was to provide a quick way to minimize any CPU/GPU resources that skins might be using and leave Rainmeter running to quickly re-enable skins later. We chose a manual method of starting/stopping game mode to keep things easy and leave the user in control. We want the user in control of game mode, not skin authors. This is why there were no bangs to control this nor any saved settings (since a clever person could just overwrite the settings manually).

We remain committed to the user being in control of game mode.



Now to the changes...
https://docs.rainmeter.net/manual-beta/user-interface/manage/#GameModeTab

  1. You can still manually start or stop game mode via the context menu - just like before.
    [small text]
  2. There is a new "Game mode" tab in the Manage dialog.
    [small text]
  3. New "Full-screen games" option. When checked, Rainmeter will automatically detect when a program is in D3D full-screen exclusive mode. Most games run in this mode, but some do not.
    [small text]
  4. New "Additional process list" option. When checked, Rainmeter will automatically monitor any processes listed in the edit box. Just use the process name in the list (example: "notepad.exe"). Also, use a new line for each entry.
    [small text]
  5. New "On start" action. This is the action that is run when game mode starts. The default menu selection is "Unload all skins". A list of available layouts will also be in the menu. You can select a layout to run instead of the default action.
    [small text]
  6. New "On stop" action. This is the action that is run when game mode stops. The default menu selection is "Load current layout". A list of available layouts will also be in the menu. You can select a layout to run instead of the default action.
    [small text]
  7. Most of these new options can also be accessed in the context menu.
GameMode01.png
GameMode02.png
GameMode03.png
GameModeContext01.png

There are a couple of things to keep in mind while Rainmeter is running in game mode:
  1. If you loaded a layout for your "On start" action AND then you manually stop game mode (via context menu): the "Full-screen games" and "Additional process list" options will be un-checked and must be re-checked in order for Rainmeter to actively monitor those options again. This is to prevent game mode from starting back up immediately.
    [small text]
  2. If you loaded a layout for your "On start" action AND then you delete the layout (Layouts tab) for the "On stop" action, game mode will stop. Like item #a above, the "Full-screen games" and "Additional process list" options will be un-checked.
    [small text]
  3. If you loaded a layout for your "On start" action AND then manually un-check "Full-screen games" and/or "Additional process list", game mode will stop.
    [small text]
  4. If you exit Rainmeter normally, the "On stop" action will still be performed, but the skins will not be loaded before exiting. This will not happen if Rainmeter crashes or is manually killed via the Task Manager or other means.

Like we stated above (and in previous posts), we prefer the user to remain in control of these settings - meaning no bangs, command line activation, etc.

-Brian
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Yincognito
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Re: Game mode revisited

Post by Yincognito »

Wow, it sounds really great! :thumbup:
I look forward testing it when I get the time (currently working on some skins). ;-)
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balala
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Joined: October 11th, 2010, 6:27 pm
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Re: Game mode revisited

Post by balala »

Yes, indeed seems to be a realy useful addition, which adds a feature asked by many users over time. Will test it soon, but hope it'll work as expected (well, I'm sure it will).
Congarts...
gran172
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Joined: May 16th, 2019, 3:51 am

Re: Game mode revisited

Post by gran172 »

This is the feature that I've been waiting the most to be added into Rainmeter, and it got added on the same day as my birthday, 10/10 gift haha!

Thanks for the hard work! Love this program.
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eclectic-tech
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Re: Game mode revisited

Post by eclectic-tech »

These are very thoughtful improvements, while keeping it a user-controlled feature... Well done! :thumbup:
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Jeff
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Joined: September 3rd, 2018, 11:18 am

Re: Game mode revisited

Post by Jeff »

Brian wrote: April 10th, 2021, 4:03 pm Like we stated above, we prefer the user to remain in control of these settings - meaning no bangs, command line activation, etc.
Hmmm I wonder why that is specifically said there :oops:

Anyways, my previous suggestion of implementing what would basically be IsFullScreen into Rainmeter was fulfiled and even better than I would have ever suggested. Great job, now the option actually is reliable
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CyberTheWorm
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Re: Game mode revisited

Post by CyberTheWorm »

Well I tested it with the default settings and its working as intended so far. Good job :thumbup:
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mpurses
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Re: Game mode revisited

Post by mpurses »

I love these automated additions. Nice work!

A recommendation would be to clarify what exactly Game mode is before jumping straight into the settings. Similar to the layout tab.
Because the "Full-screen games" checkbox doesn't really tell a new user what they are enabling going onto this tab cold. And the main text on this tab starts with "You can also...", so it is assuming the user already knows what Game mode is.

Something like this...?
gamemode.png
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jsmorley
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Re: Game mode revisited

Post by jsmorley »

mpurses wrote: April 15th, 2021, 2:42 pm I love these automated additions. Nice work!

A recommendation would be to clarify what exactly Game mode is before jumping straight into the settings. Similar to the layout tab.
Because the "Full-screen games" checkbox doesn't really tell a new user what they are enabling going onto this tab cold. And the main text on this tab starts with "You can also...", so it is assuming the user already knows what Game mode is.

Something like this...?
gamemode.png
That's not a bad idea...
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Yincognito
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Re: Game mode revisited

Post by Yincognito »

Ok, so as promised, I tested the new Game Mode implementation, since I also "upgraded" my Rainmeter as well. All things worked perfectly, until...
Game Mode Test 00.jpg
Game Mode Test 01.jpg
What happens is that I recently "upgraded" one of my games too (Euro Truck Simulator 2), and while the new Game Mode system worked for the previous game version, it (sort of) doesn't for the new one. Sort of, because it actually DOES work but only for the game session in which I "toggle" from windowed mode to the full screen one. As soon as I exit and rerun the game (by now game working in Full Screen due to my previous actions), Rainmeter's Game Mode system doesn't unload my skins (the little ones at the top of my screen) like it did when performing the "toggle" earlier.

Not sure if that makes any difference, but I should note that I "installed" the game in a portable fashion, meaning no registry keys, start menus or anything like that being created (I just wanted to see its features before an actual install). But then, so was the previous game version (the start menu shortcuts were created by myself, for convenience), and it worked just fine. :confused:

In any case, I'm not overly annoyed by this behavior (at least not yet), I just wanted to let you guys know. Other than that, great work with the new system - it works fine for other games. :thumbup:
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