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News: Starsector 0.8.1a In-Development Patch NotesStarsector 0.8a is out (hotfix is up!)
 
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Author Topic: Starfarer 0.35a (Preview Released) - Patch Notes  (Read 47256 times)
Alex
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« on: June 27, 2011, 11:58:29 AM »

Update - the preview version of the 0.35a release is out, and you can get it here.

The preview version, in a nutshell:
  • New fleet control scheme
  • Codex with info on ships/fighters/weapons
  • Fleet command tutorial
  • Mods need to be updated with "gameVersion":"0.35a" in the descriptor to show up in the list.
  • Right-click and drag now pans the map around, instead of left. Left-clicking is wholly reserved for interaction with objects. This will trip you up. I apologize Smiley

The full patch notes are below.


Latest Changes (updated on 8/19/2011)
  • Wrapped up fleet command changes, discussed in detail here
  • Content:
    • New ships: Medusa, Aurora, Dominator
    • New fighters: Warthog, Gladius, Thunder, Longbow, Trident
    • Cult of Lud captains in missions now have suicidal personalities
    • Revamped missions to showcase new ships and gameplay. The names are the same, but the missions are all quite different.
  • New hand-painted backgrounds, stars
  • Codex interface - accessible from main menum, "more info" on context menus, mission briefing, and mission results
  • Improved font rendering, added new font for improved readability of larger blocks of text.
  • Improved fog of war rendering, increased fog of war resolution
  • Changed the way the exe is generated for windows, hopefully avoiding some AV false positives
  • Mods need to be updated with "gameVersion":"0.35a" in the descriptor to show up in the list.
  • New csv loader - supports multiple lines within strings in a row, and double quotes in strings (escape as ""). Mostly useful for descriptions.csv
  • Balance changes:
    • Improved Onslaught - converted some small turrets into medium, improved all-around coverage
    • Improved Conquest - side-facing hardpoints converted to turrets, changed slot types & sizes, made faster. Overall, more powerful and easier to use
    • Lots and lots of weapon balance changes - mostly bringing weaker weapons up to par
  • Added captain personalities
  • Fighters more likely to return to carrier when hitpoints are low
  • Added two new fighter classes. Assault - stays close to target like interceptors, but doesn't have a preference for engaging fighters like interceptors do. Support - tries to strafe around the target without making direct attack runs.
  • Added friend-vs-foe indicators around ships and missiles (red diamond for enemy, blue circle for neutral, green square for friendly in map view only)
  • To prevent any incompatibility problems due to extensive control changes, controls are now reset to defaults when running the new version of the game for the first time.
  • Fixed AI bug that caused bombers to be too cautious with bombs, and too cautious in general. They're a lot more deadly now.
  • All dialogs can now be dismissed by right-clicking outside the dialog. Pressing Escape still works, too.
  • Ships use full color icons - should be placed in ships/icons/color/icon2_<hull id>.png


Full list of changes, broken out by category, below:

Content
  • Codex interface - accessible from main menum, "more info" on context menus, mission briefing, and mission results
  • New fighters: Warthog, Gladius, Thunder, Longbow, Trident
  • Cult of Lud captains in missions now have suicidal personalities
  • Revamped missions to showcase new ships and gameplay. The names are the same, but the missions are all quite different.
  • New hand-painted backgrounds, stars
  • Codex interface - accessible from main menum, "more info" on context menus, mission briefing, and mission results
  • New High Intensity Laser and Annihilator Rocket Launcher graphics (screenshot, featuring the Aurora, which is also sporting the new PD burst lasers for good measure)
  • Added new ships - Medusa, Aurora, Dominator - screenshot
  • Added Heavy Burst Laser, medium energy point defense weapon
  • Added PD Burst Laser weapon

Gameplay & Balance Changes
  • Wrapped up fleet command changes, discussed in detail here
  • Finished functional changes to the war room/fleet control interface. You can now create assignments for your fleet to carry out, instead of micromanaging the details. Blog post with details forthcoming.
  • Improved Onslaught - converted some small turrets into medium, improved all-around coverage
  • Improved Conquest - side-facing hardpoints converted to turrets, changed slot types & sizes, made faster. Overall, more powerful and easier to use
  • Lots and lots of weapon balance changes - mostly bringing weaker weapons up to par
  • AI improvements:
    • Revamped collision avoidance AI - much better at avoiding collisions and also aware of the ship's tactical goals (i.e., won't avoid a collision to wind up in front of an enemy Onslaught's main battery)
    • Missile avoidance similarily improved. Use of shields vs missiles also improved, especially for omni-directional shields.
    • Maneuvers to avoid being surrounded and to cause enemies to get in each other's way
    • Maneuvers to avoid crowding friendly ships that are between it and the target
    • Large ships will attempt to vent flux and get movement/turn bonus to better face threats trying to stay behind them
    • Interceptors are more wary of PD weapons
    • Improved friendly fire avoidance - AI is more aware when friendly ships might move into the path of a shot, but currently isn't
    • Won't vent flux when it's in a good position to do damage- i.e., when the enemy is venting or overloaded
    • Perceives ships that are almost done venting flux as a threat
    • Won't turn off autofire on PD groups when flux is high but enemy missiles are nearby
    • More judicious about using too many missiles on a low-hull target - won't waste all of them on overkill
    • Large ships aren't so easily distracted by smaller ones
    • Less paranoid about the threat posed by enemy missile launchers
    • Closes in to effective non-missile weapon range instead of relying on missile weapons entirely
    • If a ship outranges the enemy, it will close in to just beyond effective enemy range to take advantage of as many weapons as possible.
    • Improved strafing to stay away from enemy ship's firepower
    • Increased propensity to fire strike weapons against appropriate targets (notably, the Apogee will use its AM blasters now)
    • Alternating weapon groups now properly distinguish whether the ideal weapon to use requires aiming or not. (notably, the Apogee will use its MIRV launcher much better)
    • More intelligent about using kinetic-damage weapons vs shields
    • Added captain personalities
    • Fighters more likely to return to carrier when hitpoints are low
    • Fixed AI bug that caused bombers to be too cautious with bombs, and too cautious in general. They're a lot more deadly now.
    • Added two new fighter classes. Assault - stays close to target like interceptors, but doesn't have a preference for engaging fighters like interceptors do. Support - tries to strafe around the target without making direct attack runs.
  • Added "burst" beam weapons. A burst beam fires for a set duration - usually about a second - and then has to cool down before firing again. No weapons using it (yet), most likely candidates are PD weapons - the burst damage is front-loaded, so among other things, this allows for weapons that can easily shoot down some incoming missiles but have low overall DPS.
  • Improved the effectiveness of armor vs beam weapons overall. This includes non-energy-damage beam weapons such as the Graviton Beam, and does not include energy damage non-beam weapons such as the Pulse Lasers.

Modding-related
  • Mods need to be updated with "gameVersion":"0.35a" in the descriptor to show up in the list.
  • New csv loader - supports multiple lines within strings in a row, and double quotes in strings (escape as ""). Mostly useful for descriptions.csv
  • Ships use full color icons - should be placed in ships/icons/color/icon2_<hull id>.png
  • Sound effects are now moddable - the contents of sounds.json will be combined the same way spreadsheet contents already were
  • In weapon_data.csv, "burst size" is the burst duration, and "burst delay" is the burst cooldown.

Misc Features & Improvements
  • Added friend-vs-foe indicators around ships and missiles (red diamond for enemy, blue circle for neutral, nothing for friendly - both in map and combat view)
  • To prevent any incompatibility problems due to extensive control changes, controls are now reset to defaults when running the new version of the game for the firs
  • All dialogs can now be dismissed by right-clicking outside the dialog. Pressing Escape still works, too.
  • Improved font rendering, added new font for improved readability of larger blocks of text.
  • Improved fog of war rendering, increased fog of war resolution
  • Changed the way the exe is generated for windows, hopefully avoiding some AV false positives
  • Changed ship variant names to differentiate between "Close Support" or "Fire Support" roles, in preparation for upcoming war room changes.
  • Doubled default amount of panning. Instead of expanding the pan range, the 'Z' key now centers view on target - regardless of how far it is.
  • Changes to controls - pressing 'R' will now set/clear target as appropriate, instead of using a separate key for clearing the target.
  • The new default mapping for pause is spacebar.
  • Entering the war room always pauses the game and leaving it always unpauses.
  • Exiting the war room no longer turns off autopilot. It now stays on until it's explicitly toggled off or manual control of the ship is performed.
  • Performance tweak - planets render about 100 times faster. No, really.
  • Improved look of armor grid display

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed bug where sometimes an incorrect resolution would be used in windowed mode
  • Fixed bug where the keyboard would get into a state where it thought the Alt key was
  • Fixed bug that caused the AI to occasionally turn off shields and keep them off even while under fire
  • Fixed bug where AI would sometimes point omni shields away from the desired direction when first raising them
  • Fixed bug where game would hang if it tried to load a non-existent image.
  • Fixed bug with unknown key bindings showing up as "<unset>". Now show up as "unknown_123" etc.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2011, 07:47:27 AM by Alex » Logged
theShadow
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« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2011, 12:41:25 PM »

whoooo

I am so psyched for this!
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mendonca
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« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2011, 01:14:47 PM »

Wicked cool, man.

I only speak for myself, but I don't think you should be overly concerned with breaking mods (unless of course its trivial to *not* break mods). I'm happy to update mine as and when necessary, and I'm firmly aware anything I have done is definitely going to need to be updated several times if I want it to work with the final thingy.
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Avan
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« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2011, 01:45:52 PM »

Nice! Can't wait to start trying out some of these things.
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Alex
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« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2011, 02:10:45 PM »

I only speak for myself, but I don't think you should be overly concerned with breaking mods (unless of course its trivial to *not* break mods). I'm happy to update mine as and when necessary, and I'm firmly aware anything I have done is definitely going to need to be updated several times if I want it to work with the final thingy.

Thanks for that - yeah, I just don't want to break things if it'd take me five minutes not to Wink

The "surge" just magically changed to "burst". Err, rather, it's been that way allll along, nothing to see here.
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Ivaylo
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« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2011, 02:22:07 PM »

These aren't the surge weapons we are looking for. Move along.
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frostphoenyx
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« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2011, 01:44:41 AM »

These aren't the surge weapons we are looking for. Move along.

Haha nice :p
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« Reply #7 on: June 28, 2011, 04:28:35 AM »

Nice work! Lovely list, it gives me a warm an fuzzy feeling thinking about all the goodness next patch will bring, but that could be my fever.
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Alex
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« Reply #8 on: June 28, 2011, 07:39:07 AM »

Nice work! Lovely list, it gives me a warm an fuzzy feeling thinking about all the goodness next patch will bring, but that could be my fever.

Could be both Smiley
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Avan
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« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2011, 02:49:22 PM »

Its really cool to see david's ships from the blog post come to life!
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Avan
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« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2011, 07:41:20 PM »

Quick question for alex: will ordinance points be balanced in .35?
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Alex
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« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2011, 07:44:27 PM »

Quick question for alex: will ordinance points be balanced in .35?

That's the plan.
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Avan
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« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2011, 09:42:23 PM »

Nice!

so... ummm... do we get a balance preview? >.> (ie, so modders can begin adjusting things, and people can comment?)
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Dibuk
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« Reply #13 on: June 29, 2011, 02:50:11 AM »

Nice!

so... ummm... do we get a balance preview? >.> (ie, so modders can begin adjusting things, and people can comment?)

Oh oh! I want preview! gimmegimmegimme! ... But naw, only of Alex have time for it. We'll figure it out otherwise.
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Trylobot
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« Reply #14 on: June 29, 2011, 08:06:16 AM »

PD burst laser weapons will be perfect for the Earthling Cruiser and Autonomous Fighters. Thanks for this Alex!
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