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News: Posted in-dev 0.8a patch notes (12/3/16); New blog post: Skill Overhaul (12/17/16)
 
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Author Topic: Starfarer 0.5a Preview (Released) - Live Patch Notes  (Read 136649 times)
Alex
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« on: August 23, 2011, 08:06:35 AM »

    Renaming what was 0.35a to 0.5a to reflect the amount of
stuff being added.

Latest changes (as of 2/13/2012, final update):

Campaign
  • Added crew advancement. Crew level affects:
    • accuracy of the ship's aim (autofire for player's ship, both autofire and otherwise, for AI-captained ships)
    • movement speed and ease of maneuvering (acceleration, turn rate, etc)
    • damage taken (to represent better maintained damage control systems, better repaired armor, etc)
    • Added per-fighter damage tracking and repairs. Hangar space is required to repair fighters.
  • Added basic campaign map (TAB to bring up)
  • Fleets get a movement speed bonus (up to 2x) when traveling far away from planets and asteroids
  • A metric ton of playtesting, balancing, etc

Miscellaneous
  • Sound - changed distance function (more distant sounds drop off in volume quicker)
  • Added rank insignia to ship icons in command UI and deployment dialog
  • Added way to set crew rank for ships in mission definitions
  • Changed random mission - now gives you control of a random capital ship, and the sides are even strength.
  • Added new mission - "Forlorn Hope" - featuring the Paragon battleship
  • Added difficulty levels (damage taken is set to HALF by default), options to show/hide various floating text
    • Mission score reduced by half when playing with half damage on
  • You can zoom out one more level (and zoom in one less) while piloting cruisers and capital ships
  • Added button to deploy all ships into battle, if fleet points allow it

AI
  • Improved AI aim - both autofire and manual. Aim quality depends on crew XP level.
  • Improved missile guidance AI
  • better aware of what weapons are dangerous (weighs whether they're pointed at the ship vs how long it takes to raise shields)
  • aware of flanking, will try to do it if possible
  • interceptors better at avoiding point defense capable ships
  • more sophisticated retreat behavior - figures out when it's not doing well, even if the relative forces deployed would indicate otherwise


Latest changes (as of 1/31/2012):

Base starsystem implemented:
  • Goings-on focused around an orbital station (buy/sell weapons, ships, crew, etc)
  • Factions: Hegemony, Independent, Pirates, Tri-Tachyon
  • Loading/saving campaign games
  • Character creation screen - just name & portrait for now
  • Added campaign menu that lets you load/save/adjust settings/etc while in campaign mode w/o going back to the main menu
  • Cargo transfer UI
    • Click to pick up a stack
    • Ctrl-click buys/sells/transfers full stack
    • Shift-click picks up 1 item, subsequent shift-clicks pick up one more each
    • Shift-click-drag-release adjusts quantity slider (on stacks > size 10), subsequent shift-clicks pick up one more each
  • Ship refit
    • Takes time to finish depending on the extent of changes made to the variant
    • Ship can still be deployed in battle (with new weapons) before refit is finished, but will not have any of the hull mods
  • Ship repairs
    • Ships are repaired gradually
    • Rate is based on amount of crew (both present on the ship, and surplus crew in the fleet)
    • "Automated Repair Unit" hullmod now also affects out-of-combat repairs
    • Repairs cost supplies
    • Repairs can be suspended/resumed to manage supply use

Modding-related
  • Icons for ships are no longer required (using mipmapped ship sprites instead)
  • Added "UNIVERSAL" weapon slot type

AI tweaks
  • Improved decision process involved when turning autofire on/off - now considers flux usage of group vs available flux
  • AI considers damage type and whether its attacks will hit shields when deciding which weapons to fire for more weapon types
  • Ship with disabled weapons is more likely to vent (might as well vent while weapons are down and can't be used)
  • Ship with very low hitpoints and under threat is less likely to vent or lower shields (don't bring shields down at a critical time)
  • Improved missile firing decision logic

Balancing
  • Did an extensive balancing pass over weapons and ships with the goal of encouraging the use of kinetic weapons vs shields and HE weapons vs armor
    • High explosive damage now does 200% damage vs armor (up from 150%)
    • High explosive weapons do less damage across the board, by about 20%
    • Normalized shield absorption around the average value of 1 (used to be 0.5)
    • Increased ship flux capacity and dissipation rate across the board by ~1.5x
    • Increased weapon flux cost across the board by ~2x
    • Other per-weapon changes too numerous to list

Miscellaneous:
  • Small battles (8 or less ships total) don't have objectives and start with both sides fully deployed and close to each other
  • Combat map generation - size and battle objectives present are determined by the sizes of the opposing fleets and their selected strategies (attack/defend/escape)
  • Added "strafe without turning" control mappings, initially set to Ctrl-A/D and Alt-A/D
  • Improved/added various tooltips: for ships, combat assignments, hull mods, etc
  • Updated ship tooltips in mission briefing screen
  • Improved look of context menu and assignment indicators in command interface
  • Updated fleet deployment dialog to look more in line with new UI elements
  • Adjusted fleet point calculation at the start of battle so that each side can always deploy at least their flagship
  • Limited maximum number of flux vents and capacitors to 10/20/30/50 based on ship size
  • Added "Flux Distributor" hullmod, improves flux dissipation (stacks with vents, less efficient)
  • Added "Flux Coil Adjunct" hull mod, improves flux capacity (stacks with capacitors, less efficient)
  • Wolf frigate - modified hull so that all 3 energy turrets can point forward
  • Changed "ALTERNATING" weapon group mode to automatically switch weapons while the left mouse button is pressed
  • Ships can be scuttled for supplies (amount recovered depends on ship damage level)
  • Increased asteroid hitpoints significantly to make them more useful for hiding behind in combat
  • Changed autofire behavior - switching to autofiring group temporarily suspends autofire mode and lets you control it manually. Switching to another group resumes autofire.
  • Selecting a weapon group that your ship doesn't have allows all other groups to auto-fire (i.e., group 4 if ship only has 3 groups set up)
  • Fixed bug where missiles spawning from a disabled ship were flagged as neutral and wouldn't be targeted by PD
  • Right-clicking when shields are coming down will always bring them back up, previously click would be disregarded


Latest changes (as of 12/11/2011)

Campaign mode:
  • Single star system with several planets, moons
  • Can engage an enemy fleet, with both sides picking a strategy prior to battle (attack/defend/escape)
  • Use marines to board enemy ships after battle
  • Salvage disabled ships and cargo after battle
  • Cargo management - a single UI to manage fuel, crew, supplies, weapons, marines, and other cargo
  • Fleet management - control how ships get assigned crews
  • Refit ships using the weapons that are available
  • Ships require sufficient crew to be deployed for battle (crew experience not tracked/used quite yet)
  • Persistent ship damage after battles, including locational armor damage
  • Combat autoresolve - let your second in command fight the battle, or exit a battle midway through to autoresolve the rest

Weapons:
  • Missiles with limited ammo (10 for small, 20 medium, 30 large) never autofire - it's pretty much never a good thing when it happens
  • Changed Assault Chaingun to use animated spinning barrels
  • Added Heavy Mauler weapon using old Assault Chaingun graphic
  • Added Heavy Blaster medium energy assault weapon
  • Added Mining Blaster medium energy assault weapon
  • Added Thumper weapon - low-tech medium chaingun, rapid fire, frag damage
  • Added Salamander missile - heatseeking, knocks out engines with a strong EMP pulse


Miscellaneous:
  • Added two new high tech capital ships - the Odyssey and the Paragon
  • Improved weapon tooltips in the refit screen
  • Shift + click increases the rate at which new vents/capacitors are added/removed in the refit screen
  • Using mipmaps (LOD textures) for smoother zoomed-out graphics and ship icons
  • New Shuttle graphics (this ship only shows up in the Last Hurrah mission)
  • Changed message font to be more readable
  • Improved fighter movement to look more natural
  • "Strike" assignments now only use fighters and frigates - larger ships are excluded.
  • Added "Intercept" assignment available on enemy fighters and frigates. Assigns fast, nearby craft. Interceptors are especially preferred. "Harass" (which prefers ships with medium-range weaponry) is now only available on enemy ships of destroyer size and above.
  • Renamed "flux damage" to "EMP", no longer raises target ship's flux, but ignores armor and disables weapons and engines.
  • Fixed ship AI bug that was causing it to be a bit too concerned with avoiding collision with a ship it was directly engaging
  • Some AI improvements re: not firing off too many missiles vs a near-dead target and not using emp weapons against shields
  • Slightly increased the turn rate of some large ships (Onslaught, Dominator)
  • Increased the flux capacity of all ships by roughly 50%. Flux dissipation rate is unchanged. The goal is to reduce the frequency (and increase the committment) of venting and give shields a bit more longevity under fire.
  • Converted Ion Cannon and Gauss Cannon to use standard weapon controls (i.e., left click to fire, instead of hold to charge and release to fire). This wraps up converting all former pulse weapons to the standard control model.
  • Shift + mousewheel now scrolls through lists very quickly
  • Added music
  • Countless other minor improvements


Latest changes (as of 09/17/2011)

Made weapons and engines damageable:
  • Weapons take damage when the hull is hit near their location. Some weapons can't be damaged due to being set very far from the edges - for example, some middle turrets of the Onslaught. Most can be, however.
  • Disabled weapons (or engines) can't be damaged further and come back online after ~10-20 seconds, depending on weapon size and relevant ship hull mods
  • Hardpoint weapons are much more durable than turrets
  • Flux-inducing weapons such as the Ion Cannon are particularly effective at disabling weapons and engines as the flux damage component ignores armor
  • Engines are disabled individually, gradually reducing ship maneuverability and speed
  • Disabling larger engines has a proportionally larger effect
  • Disabling engines can also cause the ship's facing to drift in one direction or another, depending on the location of the disabled engine
  • When over half the engines are down, a complete "flameout" occurs and the ship loses all ability to maneuver for ~5-20 seconds, depending on size
  • Several new hull mods that let you change various related properties - Insulated Engine Compartment, Armored Weapon Emplacements, Flux Breakers, Automated Repair Unit
  • Fighters with disabled engines can crash into ships. Admiral Piett seemed indisposed and could not be reached for comment.

Added to modifiable ship stats:
  • flux damage taken
  • health modifier for weapons
  • health modifier for engines
  • repair rate modifier

Miscellaneous:
  • Added flux generation displays to weapon groups dialog, main refit screen.
  • Added hull/flux/top speed/flight decks displays to main refit screen
  • Made "weapon groups" button glow if there are weapons changes to remind you to tweak the groups if needed. Added because I keep forgetting.
  • Optimized the way beam weapons do damage. Should result in decent performance increase when many of those are in play.
  • Fixed bug that caused beam weapons to do 2x the intended damage when a ship's flux level was high.
  • Reduced the damage bonus from flux level to energy weapons to 50% (from 100%)
  • Increased the range of assault weapons across the board
  • Improved Hellbore Cannon and Light Mortar projectile speeds

Converted some pulse weapons to use the standard control scheme (more to come, like Gauss Cannon):
  • IR Pulse Laser
  • Pulse Laser

Added new weapons:
  • Heavy Needler
  • Multi-Needler
  • Frag Bomb Bay (with proximity fuse)
  • Cluster Bomb Bay
   
    

Latest changes (as of 09/11/2011)

  • Added ship refit screen:
    • Refit every ship in your fleet (install weapons and hull mods)
    • 50+ weapons
    • Available hull mods:
      • Heavy Armor
      • Reinforced Bulkheads
      • Augmented Engines
      • Auxiliary Thrusters
      • Expanded Magazines
      • Expanded Missile Racks
      • Integrated Point Defense AI
      • Integrated Targeting Unit
      • Hardened Shield Emitter
      • Stabilized Shield Emitter
      • Accelerated Shield Emitter
      • Extended Shield Emitter
      • Advanced Turret Gyros
      • Advanced Optics
    • Save, load and rename ship variants
    • Balanced ordnance points values for ships and weapons
  • Modding-related:
    • All hull mods are implemented in a mod-friendly way
    • Exposed the following ship properties for modification via scripts:
      • max speed, acceleration, deceleration, max turn rate, turn acceleration
      • flux capacity, flux dissipation
      • hull/armor/shield damage taken multipliers
      • energy/ballistic/missile/beam weapon damage dealt multipliers
      • shield upkeep, shield absorption, shield turn rate, shield unfold rate, shield arc
      • energy/ballistic/missile/beam weapon range bonuses (flat & multipliers)
      • armor/hull bonuses (flat & multipliers)
      • energy/ballistic/missile ammo bonuses (flat & multipliers)
    • Extracted WeaponAPI from core - a step towards letting scripts to do more with the game
  • Gameplay:
    • Strike craft will now route through a nearby "Rally Strike Force" assignment before accepting a "Strike" assignment. Naturally, only comes into play when "Rally Strike Force" assignments exist. The effect is to be able to set up flanking strikes without continuous micromanagement.
    • Ships assigned using a direct order via "Assign Task..." no longer count against towards the total strength of ships given to the assignment, except for "Capture". The effect is that directly assigning a ship to a task is less likely to cause other ships to be reassigned away from it.
    • Increased priority of "Harass" assignment
    • Changed scrolling lists to use the right mouse button for scroll & drag to be consistent with the combat map. Mousewheel still works, too. Also changed mousewheel scrolling to be faster and more smooth.
    • Added "Hold Fire" toggle that temporarily stops all autofiring groups from firing. Default key binding is X.
    • Turrets in inactive groups track the mouse now, letting you switch to a different group more easily (it'll already be pointing in the right direction when you switch, instead of having to wait).
    • Can now target ships while in a video feed from a friendly ships (formerly, attempting to do so would terminate the video feed)
   


Previous changes
  
Gameplay
  • Added new "Control" assignment. Gets automatically created after a successful "Capture" and converted back to "Capture" if the objective is lost. Is never assigned any ships.
  • Command points are refunded if an assignment or direct order is given and then immediately cancelled while the game is still paused
  • Ship assignments are updated immediately when created or direct orders are given, so you can see what's assigned where without needing to unpause
  • "Capture" assignments are more sensitive to how quickly a ship can get to the target objective (much less likely to reassign to a faster, but farther-away ship).

Content
  • Added new starry background to the mix

Modding
  • Fixed bug with loading CSV files where it would not handle double quotes in the first row
[/list]
« Last Edit: February 14, 2012, 10:06:20 AM by Alex » Logged
Avan
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« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2011, 09:04:58 AM »

Yay! nice to see the command interface shaping up already
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Alchenar
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« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2011, 12:11:48 PM »

I actually like the current backgrounds.  They're just the right amount of 'interesting' while never obstructing what's happening in the foreground.
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Avan
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« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2011, 12:15:44 PM »

I like the variation in the backgrounds: it makes for interesting screenshots.

Also, is there a way to specifiy that a mission should have a random background?
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Alex
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« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2011, 12:26:17 PM »

I actually like the current backgrounds.  They're just the right amount of 'interesting' while never obstructing what's happening in the foreground.

Just added another one to the mix, in the same overall style - didn't replace all the current ones. Updated notes to make that a bit more clear.

Also, is there a way to specifiy that a mission should have a random background?

Nope.
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Alex
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« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2011, 03:00:27 PM »

Updated with latest changes.
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Blips
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« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2011, 06:59:37 PM »

I am looking forward to playing with the refit screen. The next update cannot come fast enough!
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Blips
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« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2011, 04:38:12 PM »

Just wanted to say that I finally got around to playing the latest version and that I find the game to be even more enjoyable now than the 1st version. One issue I did notice was that when selecting ships and requesting info on them, an incorrect codex page would be displayed.
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Alex
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« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2011, 04:44:02 PM »

Thanks, glad you like it Smiley

One issue I did notice was that when selecting ships and requesting info on them, an incorrect codex page would be displayed.

Hmm... haven't noticed that myself. Do you remember any specifics?
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Blips
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« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2011, 04:56:10 PM »

Thanks, glad you like it Smiley

One issue I did notice was that when selecting ships and requesting info on them, an incorrect codex page would be displayed.

Hmm... haven't noticed that myself. Do you remember any specifics?

I was using the hotkey, not actually pressing the button. First I checked out the info on a friendly unit, and then when trying to look up enemy units it would show the friendly unit page again.
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Alex
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« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2011, 05:03:24 PM »

Thanks - can't reproduce it, but will keep an eye out for it.
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Champion
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« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2011, 07:10:49 PM »

What's the easiest way to get the updates?
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CommComms
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« Reply #12 on: September 12, 2011, 07:59:12 PM »

Just download them from where you originally got the game and reinstall it.  http://fractalsoftworks.com/preorder

Alex doesn't release a new version every time he updates these patch notes though, these are just to keep us up to date on the progress and what we have to look forward to.  Every 1-2 months (at the current pace) he'll release a new version with all of the new content and changes, and that'll be accompanied by an announcement in this forum and probably a blog post.
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Flare
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« Reply #13 on: September 12, 2011, 08:07:22 PM »

What's the easiest way to get the updates?

Updates as in an RSS or twitter feed?
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Quote from: Thana
Quote from: Alex

The battle station is not completely operational, shall we say.

"Now witness the firepower of this thoroughly buggy and unoperational batt... Oh, hell, you know what? Just ignore the battle station, okay?"
Champion
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« Reply #14 on: September 12, 2011, 08:26:15 PM »

What's the easiest way to get the updates?

Updates as in an RSS or twitter feed?

Sorry, i was vauge...New versions...The post above answered it for me.
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