Wanna play wherever you go? heres my guide

#1k darkfirePosted 5/19/2011 8:01:19 AM(edited)
!!!Darkfires Terraria Cloud Saving Guide!!!
Or: Allowing Terraria to go from simple late-night addiction to conquering your life
Or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Terraria

I've spent quite a few hours on this and I'm a little drunk, so please do me a favor and listen to the Real Adventures of Jonny Quest theme while you read this.

NOTE #1: I take no responsibility for any personal follies that could result in loss of your stuff. This entire process is nondestructive and if you follow my instructions you will automatically make a backup you can restore at any time if things go wrong.

NOTE #2: This does require some minor technical knowledge, but again, it's non-destructive. If you're capable of playing this game, you're almost definitely capable of doing it. If you understand what to do when I say "open a command prompt," you definitely are.

NOTE #3: This does require some minor technical knowledge, but again, it's non-destructive. If you're capable of playing this game, you're almost definitely capable of doing it. If you understand what to do when I say "open a command prompt," you definitely are.

NOTE #4: I take no responsibility for loss of productivity at work, potential breakup/divorce, and/or financial hardship that may result from being able to play this game more and more easily.

NOTE #4: This is not really my idea, all I did was apply the same principles as whoever came up with this solution for Minecraft. He or she is the one that deserves your thanks.

So what this allows you to do is store your characters and worlds in the cloud. You know. Out there. On the interwebs. This combined with Steam's "hey, we've already got your money" approach to DRM means that you can play your Terraria saves from any computer with an internet connection. Since the minimum requirements for this game are basically a TI-86 calculator, I can think of no better use for this trick. Granted, this will become obsolete if and when Steam Cloud Saving* becomes enabled for this game.

But until then... go forth! Pretend to listen to your boss while you build a third story onto your gold-brick castle from your work PC! Tell your girlfriend she can take all the time she needs to get ready while you use her laptop to grind out that new weapon, ninja-style. Find new value in that friend who can never decide what movie to watch after you already drag yourself over to his house!

This is tested and working.

This solution relies on two crucial components: Dropbox and symbolic links. Dropbox is, I promise, something you want anyway if you don't already have it. It's basically a cloud-linked folder you keep somewhere on your computer- anywhere else you install Dropbox you can access those files. whoa. the piggy bank in Terraria functions exactly the same way.

Symbolic links are a Windows shell trick, and they work the real magic here. Essentially, they're like shortcuts on steroids. Instead of just redirecting the user to the target folder, a symbolic link actual tricks whatever application looks at the link (even Windows Explorer) into thinking it is actually looking at the real thing. You've probably figured out where we're heading.

****** How-To ******
0. If you haven't already, open up Terraria on your main PC and choose custom cursor color from the settings menu. This is optional, but trust me.
1. Get Dropbox. It takes 5 minutes and again, you want it anyway, believe me. 2GB free. Anybody lists you as a referral, you both get an extra 250MB.
2. Copy your Terraria folder from <My Documents\My Games\> into your Dropbox.
3. Rename your original Terraria folder Terraria - Backup. This is now your backup (duh). If anything goes wrong, delete the symbolic link folder and rename this back to just "Terraria" and everything is back to normal.
4. This is where the magic happens: making a symbolic link.
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#2k darkfire(Topic Creator)Posted 5/19/2011 7:59:11 AM
4a. If you have Windows Vista or 7, this can be done natively. Open up a command prompt and type:
Quote:
mklink /d "My Documents\My Games\Terraria" "Dropbox\Terraria"
Obviously, replace what I have in quotes with your actual My Documents\My Games directory and your Dropbox directory. You can actually drag and drop from the address bar right into the command prompt (very handy).
4b. If you have Windows XP, upgrade. If you're too stubborn for all that, you can grab a tiny, safe Windows shell extension called Junction. <-that link is direct form sysinternals. Verified safe. Put junction.exe in C:\Windows. Then open a command prompt and type:
Quote:
junction "My Documents\My Games\Terraria" "Dropbox\Terraria"
Obviously, replace what I have in quotes with your actual My Documents\My Games directory and your Dropbox directory.
5. Made it this far? The hard part is totally over. Let's listen to Jonny Quest again. Check and make sure you have a Terraria folder in your local, My Games directory- this is the symbolic link.
6. Now, all you need to do to access your stuff from any other computer is log in to your Steam account, install Terraria (the game files are <20mb unpacked), install Dropbox, and run the same symbolic link command (you may need to slightly tweak the path names if the directory structure is different on the second++ PC).
7. Wait for your Dropbox files to sync- each world you have is under 50mb, but it could take a little while if you have a bunch of world. I'm sure you're clever enough to figure out how you could make only a certain world or worlds cloud-accessible if you so desired. There's a green circle with a check next to your Dropbox folder when it's done syncing. After the initial sync, it will be nearly instantaneous every time after that since it only updates changed files.
8. Open Terraria on the secondary PC. If you see the custom cursor color you set, you already know it worked. Pretty cool, eh? Now, feel free to pillage and plunder. Build yourself a shrine. When you get back to your home PC and log back in, it'll be there waiting for you.
9. If you ever to decide to abandon this endeavor and go back to your lonely, cloudless world (why?) all you need to do is delete the symbolic link folder and copy over the Terraria folder from your Dropbox back into My Games. Just start over from step 2 if you want to link back up.

*Steam Cloud Saving requires an you be logged in and online on Steam, while this solution will work in Offline Mode since Steam and Dropbox have nothing to do with each other. So this approach does have a leg up there.

Also, this is kind of cool- if the second PC, say, a laptop- has the latest synced version of your saves in it, you can even play on the go without an internet connection. When you get back home, as soon as the laptop is online again your Dropbox syncs back up and you are good to resume playing on your main computer.

Finally, even if you're not interested in playing in the clouds, following these steps is not a bad idea just to protect your precious save files. That is- you'll be making two backups, one local, and one on the Dropbox servers. If you ever have any trouble or need to uninstall and reinstall the game, change PCs or hard drives, etc., it'll make it much simpler to get your world and character back, not to mention saving them from oblivion if your computer crashes.
#3Guardian of HyrulePosted 5/19/2011 9:13:23 AM
This works great IF you have 100% reliable internet. If not...there can be some problems.

Still DropBox is a pretty good thing to have anyway.


That said, the author of the game has talked about getting your saves and characters Steam Cloud-integrated soon, which would make this all obselete.
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We can all learn something from the Legend of Zelda and it's triforce, Power is nothing without the courage and wisdom to make use of it...
#4Bigtom83Posted 5/20/2011 9:39:16 AM
So, instead of syncing your chars this way, do you think if you copied your character onto another computer, you could dupe your items?
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#5GameGuy777Posted 5/20/2011 10:13:02 AM
Can't seem to get this to work.

I use mklink /d C:\Users\name\Documents\My Games\Terraria D:\Dropbox\Terraria

It says the syntax is incorrect. What am I doing wrong here?
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"I own a 3DO, but I don't have sex with it."-Shammah
#6ZykkrPosted 5/20/2011 10:20:11 AM
GameGuy777 posted...
Can't seem to get this to work.

I use mklink /d C:\Users\name\Documents\My Games\Terraria D:\Dropbox\Terraria

It says the syntax is incorrect. What am I doing wrong here?


Are you sure it's just Documents and not My Documents?
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#7GameGuy777Posted 5/20/2011 10:21:26 AM(edited)

From: Zykkr | #006
GameGuy777 posted...
Can't seem to get this to work.

I use mklink /d C:\Users\name\Documents\My Games\Terraria D:\Dropbox\Terraria

It says the syntax is incorrect. What am I doing wrong here?


Are you sure it's just Documents and not My Documents?


I copied it directly from the address bar.

I'm on Windows 7.

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