Patch and Updates Notes

#79

Hotfix 0.7.6.1 ( Sunday September 13th 2020 )

  • Fixed missiles lifespawn accidentely increased to 200s (they’re now back to their default of 20s)
  • Floating starmap’s deploy buttons can no longer be accidentely clicked on while panning / rotating the view
  • Flight assist now tries to maintain the current speed while radial menus are opened
  • Fixed crash due to large numbers in network interpolator
  • Added a sensor screen transition speed setting in the general options menu (default: 1 second)
  • Small sound volumes tweaks
  • German strings localization update
5 Likes
#80

Patch 0.7.7.0 ( Saturday October 17th 2020 )

This patch implements a new match progression system to act as tug-of-war, in order to focus players on a specific battle/location instead of spreading out over multiple battlefields. The changes are pretty experimental so might need urgent balance tweaks in a future hotfix or patch.

The way it works is the following: instead of having multiple battles run at the same time, we only allow one single battle ( AI-commanded directed ) at any one time. One team is attacking, the other one defending. If the attacking team wins, the objective gets destroyed and it can attack another objective again. However, if the team loses, then the initiative goes to the defending team, which then gets its turn to go on the offensive.

Our goal with this change is to focus the action on a specific battlefield instead of spreading the playerbase over multiple battles ( so sometimes players didn’t even encounter each other due to participating to different battles ). The other goal is to make the battles feel more important - which is why we got ride of the critical vs non-critical battles system: now all battles are critical. Losing a battle as a defender means losing the base, period. As a side consequence, the rules should also be easier to understand, especially for new players. Destroy all enemy bases to win the match, that’s it !

Feedback on whether the new system works or not is very much appreciated. This patch also contains a lot of AI tweaks, a new neutral color-theme for the menus/UI, a new panel to compare ships statistics, and as usual plenty of HUD improvements and bug fixes.

Gameplay & AI

  • Removed the concept of critical vs non-critical battles. All battles are now critical (the base will get destroyed if the enemy wins the battle) even if it’s no longer explicitely said. This should help to reduce the duration of matches, but also feel like each battle has a stronger impact on the match flow

  • Removed condition threshold (<20% of enemy’s) for match victory versus opposite team’s score. It was an obscure rule to speed up the end of a match. Now a match will only end when very single enemy base has been destroyed

  • Increased countdown to battle ending from 10s to 2 minutes (battles were ending too quickly with no time to clean leftover ships, and sometimes the same battle restarted at the same location)

  • Changed match progression to act as a tug-of-war for battles. Only one battle is active at a time. When a team loses a battle, its opponent gets the initiative for attacking. As a result, the match ping-pongs between teams. However when a team wins an attack battle, it has the opportunity to attack again instantly

  • Static defenses on structures are now taken into account when showing a battle’s victory odds to the player

  • Attacker teams now have a slight advantage in fleet’s credits budget compared to the defender team’s, to take into account that the defender team’s slightly advantaged due to the static defenses/turrets/platforms

  • Shields no longer break down when they’re depleted. Depleted shields now start recharging instantly. A critical hit has been added for shields being damaged instead (like other ship sub systems). It’ll take 30s for shields being repaired

  • Energy no longer recharges at the same time as firing weapons in weapons overcharge mode. Weapons overcharge mode felt overpowered compared to the other modes, as if you fired in bursts, your energy was naturally recharging at full rate; so if you alternated between firing bursts, there was little downside to using this overhcharge mode

  • Rogue AI/bots will no longer accidentely reinforce/participate in active battles (they were interfering with the score calculations)

  • Reduced a little bit the probability of spawning AI capital ships in battles (this should make capital ships more valuable)

  • AI can now fire kinetic weapons when their target’s shields are low (previously, shields had to fully depleted or damaged for a bot to start using kinetics)

  • Fixed too many AI ganging up on a single enemy. The ratio was previously 5:1, but is now limited to 2:1 (in ship’s score worth)

  • Fixed AI ships getting forcibly killed by the server due to remaining in warp in for more than 2 minutes, which could happen for AI destroyers entering a planetary battle. The limit is now 5 minutes

Asteroid and planetary collisions Fixes

  • Fixed a bug which ignored projectile collisions on planetary surfaces (projectiles were passing through)

  • Fixed multiple collision issues/bugs with asteroids

  • Adjusted asteroid rotation speed (massive asteroids now rotate slower, almost unnoticeable)

  • Fixed a major resource leak issue in asteroid fields/rings, which could potentially cause slowdowns over time (collision bodies were not properly destroyed when the ring was unloaded)

  • Fixed planetary/atmospheric battles ships that were warping in too fast and colliding/dying on the ground before they could even get into battle

User Interface / Menus

  • Implemented new user interface / menus color theme (previously: the UI was using the HUD’s color theme, so the colors were messy/all over the place. The new color theme is more neutral to the eye and coherent)

  • Added team assets to mission screen’s info panel when selecting a battle. The victory odds are still shown as previously, but the panel now also shows the absolute credit’s worth of assets owned by each team in the battlefield

  • Added new ship description and statistics panel in ship menu screen. This will allow to compare the different ships’s statistics together

  • Fixed a bug related to textured brushes, which made some images flicker or appear incorrect in the UI (ex.: team selection menu background images were sometimes incorrect for a frame)

  • Fixed missing trailings length slider bar in sensors tactical screen

HUD Tweaks and Improvements

  • Added new HUD notifications for being repaired/resupplied (or, as a corvette, doing repairs/resupplies), either by an allied ship or in hangars

  • Updated spawn marker colors: they’re now only blue for hangars that can fit your ship class (otherwise they’re now red). This will make it more obvious to new players where they can repair/resupply

  • Added new floating text indicators on HUD to notify player of closest hangar or resupply ship (corvette).

  • Added a new floating text indicator on HUD to notify player of the the closest heavily damaged ally (so as a corvette player, you know who’s in need of repairs)

  • Tweaks to HUD warnings/alerts: they’re now colored as a function of importance/priority (info alerts are in cyan, normal alerts in orange, critical alerts in red)

  • HUD indicator tweaks (they’re now more opaque)

  • Tweaked selected target’s color so that it is more easily visible on the HUD

  • Added horizontal alignment to MFDs (ex.: mission MFD is now right-aligned if it’s in the top-right corner of the HUD)

  • Changed bounty indicator icon

  • Added more explicit target-out-of-range alert if manually firing weapons at a far-away target

  • Locking targeting circle color is now shows up as green only if the ship’s direction is aligned to its velocity. This will help firing missiles/torpedoes at targets within the circle

General bug fixes and Improvements

  • Fixed friendly fire warning not showing up when hitting modular structures
  • Fixed credits being reset to 0 instead of 50 when the match restarts

Assets and Visuals

  • Updated a dozen station modular assets with their upgraded visuals (better geometry, improved materials/colors, added ambient occlusion etc…)

  • Added ground (planetary surfaces or asteroids) impact projectile effect

  • Updated bobblehead models with new look and textures

  • Dust-particles effect now uses a non-uniform, more realistic density model (rings and close to thick atmospheres = higher dust density)

  • The dust-particles effect is now affected by the ‘effects quality’ setting

  • Modular structures destruction/explosion effects now fade off over time (previously, the small explosions never stopped and could become annoying)

  • Updated spawn/hangar modular markers (also, fixed the ones for ground bases)

  • Updates to spawns: dimensions tweaks, added new markers, added some new spawns in ground modules

  • Updated destruction materials and added some missing materials ( some modules, like HUBs, did not have destruction materials and did not appear destroyed to the players)

Audio

  • Fixed a major bug when initializing the audio device. It defaulted to 5.1 output, even for stereo users. As a result, if you were using a stereo device, sound quality was negatively affected. The game should now properly use your default audio device’s setup and most users should notice a sound quality increase (especially if you were playing in stereo or 2.1)
  • Added menu option to change the output audio device on the fly (without having to restart the game)
  • Audio volume adjustments for rotating turrets, weapons firing sound range, explosions sound range…
  • Updated some audio effects after last patch’s feedback (new AMSl laser sound effect, improved machine gun sounds, improved some projectile impact sounds)

Misc

  • Updated some default game settings (ex.: MFD layouts per ship, increased navigation targets from 30 to 50, … )
  • Updated game’s initial settings to better take into account quality level based of CPU speed and GPU video-ram
  • Moved default viewpoint in corvette slightly to the left (to be seated)
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I-Novae Community Events
I-Novae Community Events
#81

Patch 0.7.8.0 ( Saturday October 24th 2020 )

This small patch focuses on some important bug fixes related to planets, and introduces a new moon: Rygol, an arid Arizona-inspired moon full of canyons and terraced cliffs with a radius of 4250 Km and a green-ish atmosphere.

  • Introduced a new planet: Rygol. Note that the current Battlescape still only has 4 moons max, so not all matches will necessarily feature the new moon
  • Updates to new base locations on Sarake and Aresthia
  • Fixed incorrect (floating) hardpoints when mapping a defense (tower) module on a planetary surface (turrets were sometimes floating in the air far above their tower)
  • Fixed warp-in incorrect target location that lead an AI ship crashing into the ground after a ground battle started
  • Fixed planetary collision issues due to the difference of precision in some noise functions between cpu and gpu. It mostly affect Aresthia, the Mars-like planet, where some craters had invalid collisions (sometimes you’d hit a ghost hill far above from the ground)
  • Fixed haulers that sometimes had trouble engaging warp and leaving a dense atmosphere
  • AI ships now know when to overcharge their engines on planets where gravity is too strong for their mass
  • Corvette turrets will now keep auto-aiming at their target even when they’re not the active weapon (this will minimize the re-targetting time when switching between turret guns / turret blasters)
  • Light weapons and MK4 turrets slight increase in max hit points (corvette weapons were very weak and easily destroyed by opponents)
  • Respawning will no longer open the starmap menu. It will now retain the previous menu that the player had selected in game
  • Fixed spawn marker colors for capital ships in docking bays (the markers remained red, as invalid, but should now properly be displayed as green, meaning busy)
  • Minor bobblehead/textures tweaks
9 Likes
I-Novae Community Events
#82

Patch 0.8.0.0 ( Saturday December 19th 2020 )

Hey everbody. As you can see, we’ve increased the major version number for this patch. That’s because this patch is probably the biggest/most complex of the year, and brings the long-awaited ship upgrades system and custom loadouts into play.

The implementation required some huge code refactoring so it is likely to have stability and balance issues, especially as we haven’t been able to test all the combinations of ships and upgrades yet. Remember that this is only the initial implementation.

We’ll add new upgrades and weapons on a regular basis in the coming months. We’d love to get community feedback on the new system: is it working well, is it confusing, is the loadout customization interface too complex or intuitive to use ? Are there upgrades which you find useless, or overpowered ? What other upgrades or weapons would you like to see ?

Let us know on the forums or on Discord and see you in game !

Upgrades, loadouts and ship menu

  • Introduced the new ship upgrades(/components) system and its UI. The main idea here was to extend the hardpoints system not just to weapons, but also to internal hardpoints. All hardpoints are now restricted to a category of components that you can mount on them. For example, a “structural” hardpoint can only mount structural components, and not weapons or sensors. Some upgrades have size/class restrictions as well and might not be avaialble on all ships
  • The list of components available to your ship and their categories is displayed on the right-side panel
  • A “show mounted only” checkbox is also available next to the categories. The upgrades panel will only show components currently mounted on your ship’s loadout
  • Hardpoints are now displayed on top of the 3D viewport. They can be hollow (hardpoint is free) or filled (a component is mounted on it). The icon can be a small circle for internal hardpoints, or an hexagon for external/weapons hardpoints. The color is green (hardpoint is free), red (hardpoint mounted) or yellow (selected)
  • Components can have dependencies on other components (requirements or incompatibilities). Components that are currently mounted are displayed in green. Available components (but not yet mounted) are in blue. Finally, components which you cannot mount (due to a dependency issue for instance) are displayed in orange
  • When hovering over a hardpoint in the 3D viewport, or a component in the upgrades list, the details/information about the component or weapon statistics gets displaying in the information panel at the bottom-right corner of the screen
  • Components have tech levels. These are currently only for information purposes only, however we’re currently evaluating the possibility of introducing technological research done at military bases that would unlock new upgrades for your whole team
  • A loadout management bar is available at the top-right corner of the screen
  • The icons in order are: save loadout to disk (this will make the loadout available in future play sessions); duplicate the current loadout into a new one; rename the loadout; undo/revert changes to the loadout; reset/empty the loadout to a fresh start (all hardpoints become empty); and finally: delete the loadout (including from disk)
  • Note that default loadouts cannot be deleted. They can be temporarily modified, but if you do any change to a default loadout, make sure you undo/revert the changes if you’re not satisfied with them. If you’re happy with your changes and want to save the loadout, you’ll have to duplicate and rename it first before the “save” option becomes available
  • In terms of content we introduced about 25 upgrades and components. These range from familar components (flight assist, targetting assist, warp jammer, repair and resupply fields etc… ) to new upgrades that modify your ship’s statistics (ex.: feather weight reduces its mass, giving more mobility at the expense of a hit points reduction). Storage upgrades provides extra ammo/chaffs/missiles. Weaponry provides upgrades to the ship systems in general, or a sub-category of weapons
    in particular (ex.: faster turrets rotation or increased AMS laser damage). Some categories are currently empty as we haven’t implemented upgrades in them just yet (ex.: no propulsion upgrades are available yet)
  • We also introduced 2 new weapons: the Halcyon and the Plasma cutter. Both are converging weapons, which means that the weapon will no longer auto-aim at the target like the standard guns/blasters. As a converging weapon however, it will automatically adjust its firing angle towards the “depth” at which the target currently is. Those weapons require more skills/precision, and as a result have a higher DPS than the standard gimbaled weapons
  • Ship’s 3D model now correctly displays the team’s skin
  • Ship’s 3D model now renders the loadout’s selected weapons on the hull
  • Chat box is no longer visible on the ship or team menus anymore (for layout/lack of space reasons)
  • Updated ship statistic bars and values to show how the current loadout positively or negatively affects each attribute (ex.: +10% mass, -15% hitpoints etc…)
  • Added more statistics (ex.: recharge rates) to the ship statistics panel

Music and assets

  • Introduced new musical tracks in game as they were too repetitive, especially in battles. The amount of music in game was doubled (6 new battle tracks, 3 new ambient tracks, 2 new danger tracks). Credits and thanks go to our compositer, Markus Zierhofer (http://markus-zierhofer.com)
  • The music system now randomizes the order in which the tracks are being played (previously: it was sequential)
  • New station asset (a new docking bay module) for haulers
  • Loads of new icons for the new upgrades system

HUD and general UI

  • Updated layout of deployment panel: the design is now more compact and top 3 missions list was removed
  • Revamped locking system when a missile/torpedo launcher is selected: the ‘aim’ circle now dynamically changes it size based on the alignment angle towards the target. The new system takes into account your velocity and the target’s velocity and distance, to show
    you a spinning ‘lead’ indicator/reticle. Orientating your ship on this reticle will maximize your chances of the missile/torpedo hitting your target. An arrow is also displayed on the aim circle to show you in which direction you should fire your lateral thrusters to compensate the target’s relative velocity/direction
  • Revamped team scores in tab menu: removed the progress bar, now the scores appear on the left/right sides of the menu tabs. Icon is bigger, and the name of the team is displayed
  • Fixed “make target” bug in mission panel that sometimes didn’t change the HUD’s primary target
  • Closest spawn point button on starmap screen (while having opened the menu in game, not at spawn) now selects the corresponding base in the map or missions list panel. This button also becomes automatically disabled if the closest spawn base is being selected in the list
  • Fixed a clipping bug that stopped rendering the HUD radar ring or missile aiming helper when it’s partially out of the screen (but should still be partially visible)
  • More HUD icons shoould have a black outline for readability over bright backgrounds
  • Fixed a refresh bug that still showed the base having deployable spawns in the star map after it got destroyed
  • Fixed a bug that caused ships standing in their spawn to display the hangar’s spawn marker as valid (green) despite belonging to the enemy team
  • Nearest hangar’s text marker helper on HUD now stops showing as soon as its base gets destroyed (previously: the marker only disappeared after the hangar module gets destroyed, which could be a dozen seconds later)
  • Scrollbars now appear thinner
  • Fixed last death position incorrectly appearing at (0, 0, 0) with a red icon the first time the player joins a server (hence never had a ‘last death position’)
  • Fixed Windows focus event that could result in accidental UI clicks (now, if the window does not have focus, the first mouse click that gives the focus to the game will no longer result in an in-game click)
  • Fixed truncated right & bottom borders around some UI panels/windows in resolutions <= 1080p
  • Fixed various UI layout bugs related to list boxes

Bug fixes

  • Fixed instant action deploy system which listed an AI ship that the player couldn’t afford to take over due to not having enough credits (it was possible to click on the button, then the action got silentely denied by the server…)
  • Fixed carrier that couldn’t spawn at large stations anymore
  • Carrier now spawn at station docking bays instead of thin air/far away in space
  • Fixed a bug that auto-repaired some modules (defense turrets, hangars…) right after they reached 0 hitpoints, forcing them to stay alive despite the base being destroyed
  • Fixed a bug that caused some far-away modules (like defense platforms) to stay alive despite the base being destroyed
  • Fixed random client crash bug related to HUD indicators getting deleted at the wrong time
  • Fixed an issue that prevented the closest resupply ship to appear outside the (close) visual range
  • Fixed FMOD crash due to listing and try to get driver information from disconnected/unplugged audio devices
  • Fixed a crash bug when mouse clicking right as the application is starting

Known issues

  • Ships have gravity issues on planets ( even the interceptor ). We added a ramp-up factor so that ship’s don’t instantly accelerate, but this results in a loss of sufficient anti-gravity acceleration to compensate for gravity on planets. We’ll revamp the ramp-up factor to take gravity into account
  • UI and HUD icons are messed up in low quality texture mode. As a workaround, you can increase the texture quality to medium or high. We’ll work on a hotfix asap
  • The prices of ships and their loadouts has inflated. We adjusted the economy in consequence, but this hasn’t been throughly tested. It might be more difficult to earn enough credits to afford the better loadouts or capital ships than in previous versions. Feedback on the economy ( are you having difficulities with it, or do you find it more challenging in a good way ? ) is welcome
  • station/base defenses no longer fire at enemies. This is also a high priority for a hotfix
  • on custom loadouts, the weapon groups are automatically assigned and might not be in the ideal order (for example, you could have multiple groups for the same weapon… )
12 Likes
#83

Patch 0.8.1.0 ( Tuesday December 22th 2020 )

After we released the ship upgrades and custom loadouts patch a few days ago, we fixed a number of issues (some of which are pretty important) and added a polish pass over the loadouts interface. We also addressed some of the most urgent balance issues related to the two new weapons, the Halcyon and the Plasma Cutter.

General and gameplay

  • Introduced carrier spawns (compatible with other capital ships too) and updated station layouts to allow carriers to spawn at docking bays that have enough room for a carrier. Carriers will no longer spawn in space far away from stations. Note: we introduced a new icon to represent the carrier spawn. It currently uses the 'L’arge character, like other capital ships. In a future patch we’ll replace it with a dedicated 'C’arrier icon
  • Starmap list now takes compatible spawns into account when displaying “deployable” vs “non-deployable” hints and icons. This means that if you’re an interceptor trying to deploy at a base where all fighter hangars are destroyed but corvette bays are still intact, the list will now show “deployable” instead of preventing you from being able to deploy there
  • Reduced amount of chaffs on Interceptor to 10. This should make the chaff upgrade more interesting
  • Added a new upgrade: Efficient Booster. This upgrade reduces the booster’s energy consumption by -30% at the expense of a small piece of the shield’s recharge rate (-15%)
  • Doubled the amount of hitpoints on MK5 Flak canons, as they were too easily damaged in combat
  • Reduced Halcyon shot speed, range and damage. It still has slightly more DPS than gimbaled machine guns, but you’ll need good accuracy to fully exploit it
  • Reduced range and damage on the Plasma Cutter (although less than the Halcyon nerf). Shot speed is unchanged
  • Reduced spread on Halcyon and Plasma Cutter, making them more accurate at larger distances
  • Reduces heat (Halcyon) and heat+energy consumption (Plasma Cutter) to allow firing them for a longer time
  • Fixed some Halcon and Plasma cutter settings which made their converging mode useless. The new settings should make it more easy to hit a target

Bug fixes

  • Fixed HUD icons being messed up at “low-quality” texture level
  • Fixed a bug with the deploy panel that didn’t refresh the ship screen’s upgrades/components panel after changing the selected deployment loadout
  • Fixed a propulsion issue caused by introducing a ramp-up factor at very low speeds. This made ships unable to take-off from planets when they were at zero/very low speeds
  • Fixed custom loadout’s automatic weapon groups being messed / mixed up together sometimes (or even having missing weapons…). Weapons are still assigned to groups automatically, but we’ll provide a weapons configuration screen in a future patch

Improvements and UI tweaks

  • “Not enough credits” flashing text on the ship screen was moved at the top of the screen instead of occluding the center; loadout credits text is now smaller to fit on a single line for large credits values…
  • Selecting a specific component’s category in the ship’s loadout panel will now filter hardpoints that match this category in the 3D viewport
  • Changed weapons hardpoints to a diamond shape (the hexagon was too close to a circle and be confusing)
  • Weapon’s details info panel text is now colored the same as the weapon card in the upgrades panel
  • Fixed some incorrect weapon details that appeared in the info panel, like for missile/torpedo launchers
  • Added locking range information for missile/torpedo launchers in the info panel
  • Duplicating a loadout will now automatically pop up the rename window
  • Deleting a loadout will now pop up a confirmation window to avoid doing it accidentally
  • Icon tweaks (ex.: info panel’s dots are now smaller; added an up/down icon to match whether an attribute improves or hurts a ship’s attribute)

Misc

  • added final version of the new musical tracks with smoother transitions
  • added a new audio effect for the Plasma Cutter weapon
8 Likes
#84

Patch 0.8.2.0 ( Friday 01 January 2021 )

Hey everybody, first of all: Happy New Year! We’re starting the year with a new patch which aims at fixing a lot of the bugs recently introduced in patches 0.8.X as well as some quality-of-life improvements. Now that the new ship upgrades/loadout system is in place, we’ll be moving towards the player/team statistics screen revamp, the battle reports and introducing the new skill rating/scoring/leaderboard system as well as tuning the economy and match progression. There’s no precise ETA for the next patch, although we’re aiming at releasing it some time around the end of the month.

After these new features have been implemented, the next big major tasks will be to develop the squad/fleet management systems and some overdue AI improvements (making AI fly in formation, assisting the player, improving the missions system…). As you can see, 2021 is going to be a busy year…

General and gameplay changes

  • Added mass to weapons and rebalanced ship’s empty hull’s mass to be lighter so that default loadouts do not weight more with the new weapons mass (resulting in the same ship’s speeds and accelerations)
  • Mass changes from loadout now affects rotation (turn) speed
  • Added new upgrade: Spinner. Increases by +25% the rotation (turn) speed, at the cost of aiming precision and taking more time to compensate angular momentum when turning back
  • Created a new default loadout for the Interceptor called “Hawk” which focuses on mobility (it has feather full, improved turbo boost and the spinner upgrade)
  • AI now has a 25% chance to spawn an interceptor bot with the Hawk loadout

Ship upgrades/loadout screen fixes and improvements

  • Fixed incorrect loadouts when taking over an A.I. ship or sometimes for random custom loadouts
  • Fixed warp entry’s speed that wasn’t affected by mass changes from custom loadouts
  • Added a digit of precision to various ship’s statistics in the loadout screen
  • Changing a component category in the ship loadout screen now resets the component selection/filter in the 3D view (it was confusing that all hardpoints disappeared because the component selected was from the older category)
  • Fixed repair rate statistic being incorrectly treated as a negative instead of a positive change in the ship screen
  • The ship loadout’s screen and deployment panel now remember the last selected loadout for a given ship class when switching the ship class (instead of resetting it to the main default loadout)

UI / HUD

  • Switching between internal and external camera mode with capital ships no longer changes the view orientation
  • The camera view is now properly reset to being behind the ship when deploying a capital ship (previously it used the previous camera’s orientation at the time of death)
  • Reduced the size of the missile aiming lock circle (it was too large and was distracting)
  • Fixed target info’s hitpoints not being displayed on the HUD when it was below 1%
  • Hit marker sound effects will now play even on low damage hits for consistency (sometimes it felt like you were not hitting the target at all, while in reality you did, but you were doing no damage to it…)
  • “Low damage output” alert will now be displayed as a warning notification when the damage output of your current weapon isn’t sufficient to deal significant damage to the target (ex.: interceptor machine gun trying to hit a capital ship’s hull)
  • Updated keybindings help screen (F9)
  • Reduced brightness of keybindings help screen so that it doesn’t glow
  • Added a warning message when trying to activate the warp jam while it’s still under cooldown
  • Fixed HUD’s weapons aiming dots smoothing, which wasn’t working outside the screen boundaries and sometimes caused the dots to suddenly jump back into it at an incorrect position
  • Added a gravity alert that triggers when propulsion’s anti-gravity cannot compensate gravity anymore
  • Fixed carrier deployment icon (now uses a “C” icon instead of an “L”)

General bug fixes

  • Carrier hardpoint layout fixes (their orientation was messed up, causing some turrets or missile launchers to fire through the hull)
  • Fixed static defenses on bases that weren’t firing at incoming enemy targets
  • Fixed ramp-up factor slowing down the ship when reverting momentum during flight/combat
  • Fixed AMS lasers hitting a target through walls/assets
  • Fixed AMS lasers hit consistency as the laser beam switches between hits & misses (sometimes after a miss it did not resume hitting properly despite the target being in the line of sight)
  • Fixed a potential mutithreading crash bug on the server related to metal crates

Misc

  • German localization update (thanks to Playbenni)
8 Likes
I-Novae Community Events
#85

Patch 0.8.3.0 (Saturday 27 February 2021)

Greetings everybody ! This is a major new patch introducing the new player progression mechanics, a new team screen including stats with a new leaderboard, and battle reports. A lot of the changes are experimental and will need further refining/tuning, so as usual feedback is welcome.

We’ve also shifted the economy to work passively (credits get distributed regularly by the AI commander, instead of having to grind them actively in game) which should improve the strategical depth to the game and give more importance to attacking or protecting haulers.

We’re introducing the concept of research & development, under the form of science points that get researched at military facilities, finally giving them a strategical purpose. As your team accumulates research points, it unlocks new tech levels which unlock weapons and ship upgrades.

For the individual player progression, we introduced the concept experience points (XP) which are used to get promoted to a higher your military rank, also unlocking certain weapons and upgrades. XP and rank only ever goes up and can never be lost, and unlike credits, is persistent accross matches. Finally, we’ve introduced the concept of team rating (TR) which measures your individual performance and how much you’re contributing to your faction’s war efforts. You can earn or lose rating points after succeeding or failing a battle/mission, and the calculation is similar to a chess ELO-like system, taking into account the team ratings and participation of your opponents. At the moment, we’ve decided against locking ships, weapons or upgrades to your rating, as it’d prevent players with a lower skill level to access some of the content. We’re currently thinking of tying the rating to special cosmetics and maybe some special social roles, like the team commander, but if you have more ideas do not hesitate to let us know. Team rating is also persistent accross matches.

Next patch we’ll continue on iterating/adjusting the new progression mechanics, while doing a new pass over the weapons systems, rebalancing them, and finally introducing sub-systems targetting.

Progression system

  • Implemented match progression: military rank, xp and team rating
  • You now get XP instead of credits for killing enemy ships, and for participating to battles/missions
  • Once XP reaches a threshold it will level-up your military rank. There are 10 ranks total at the moment, with increasing XP thresholds
  • XP only ever goes up, you cannot lose XP even if you fail at missions or get killed
  • Some weapons or upgrades are locked in by military rank. It is still possible to edit the loadouts, but you won’t be able to spawn them without meeting their requirements
  • Team rating (TR) starts at 1500 and utilizes a chess ELO-like system, which measures your skill level and how you win or lose with your faction
  • You earn or lose TR points based on your achievements and statistics in a battle/mission, once a battle report pops up
  • Your TR is compared against the enemy team’s, in a complex formula that includes the average opponent’s rating points and the initial victory odds
  • So if you were favored to win and actually won, you’ll gain less points than winning when you were favored to lose, and vice-versa in case of defeat
  • TR gains or losses are weighted by your participation points, which measure the amounts of activity (no matter if you performance well or bad) during the mission
  • Implemented team tech level and R&D which generate ‘science points’ at military facilities, which level up the team’s tech level automatically
  • There is no individual player tech level, the tech level is shared by all members of the team
  • Some weapons or upgrades are locked in by team’s tech level like the military rank
  • Tech level starts at 1 at the match’s start and goes up to 5 after a few hours, assuming military facilities haven’t been destroyed
  • XP, military rank and team rating are persistent accross matches (but not servers)
  • The tech level is not persistent and will reset after the match ends

Team statistics screen

  • Revamped the team menu tab, now called ‘Stats’, to show the player leaderboard and the current team’s / match statistics
  • There is now a leaderboard panel at the center which shows players either online or offline, irrespective of their current team (all mixed up)
  • Each entry in the leaderboard shows the player’s rating rank (sorted by descending rating score), military rank/player name, kills/assists/death match stats, and time online (if the player is currently offline, it’ll show the last time this player connected on this server)
  • There are filter options to show all players (from the past 30 days), players that participated in the current match, or players currently online only
  • The leaderboard should now properly show players logging in/out (previously: some caching bugs sometimes caused some players to be invisible to new players)
  • Each team now has a dedicated panel showing various stats, such as match score, number of players per team, average team rating, credits income/amounts, science research points/tech level and ships losses/amounts. There’s also an asset panel showing the amount of ships and bases for that team currently owned (or detected, if belonging to the enemy) in game
  • Implemented match statistics, which are sent to the client when he joins a server, then gets updated every minute. They are displayed as a graph at the bottom of the team panel. Different statistics/graphs can be toggled on or off (note: this still needs a polish pass, changing colors if there are many graphs, showing the axis names/range etc…)

Battle reports

  • Implemented battle/mission reports that pop up a statistic screen at the end of a battle
  • The battle report automatically opens up only when you enter the in-game menus (default key: TAB)
  • The report shows rating changes (gain or loss), participation ratio, mission score and XP gained
  • Your mission score is calculated from your statistics during the mission: how many ships you killed, how you died, how much damage you made to enemy ships or structures, or how much you assisted your team like via repairs/resupplies
  • The center of the panel cycles every 10 seconds between 2 tabs: the first one shows the podium for the top 3 players and their mission scores. The second one shows the top 8 players, you included, with the score ranking and various statistics
  • The bottom of the panel also shows a bunch of toggle-able graphs showing your statistics over the battle/mission duration. If you did not participate during some time, some gaps in the graphs might appear
  • When you close (‘Dismiss’) the report, the leaderboard will temporarily open to show your change of rating before/after the mission or battle
  • Note that closed reports currently are not stored and cannot be re-opened later on, so if you’re interested in your stats, do not close the panel too quickly

Economy

  • Rebalanced the economy towards a more passive credits income system
  • Credits still get redistributed to players over time, every minute. Target is 25 credits/minute per player
  • Credits still get generated at space stations after a hauler travelled there from a factory
  • Credits cannot be earned from killing normal ships or destroying base structures anymore
  • Credits can still be earned ‘actively’ by targetting ships with bounties placed on by your team commander
  • Tweaked haulers income: each hauler now has a much higer resource load (x2 to x3 compared to before)

Weapons

  • Fixed an issue that caused slight irregular fire frequencies when firing a weapon
  • Burst firing will no longer resume at previous burst count after being interrupted. A new burst will properly start after some short cooldown
  • Fixed the torpedo launcher that had a mass of zero. It now has a mass of 2 tons

Mouse cursor sensitivity

Note: it is possible that the sensitivity settings have changed since the previous versions if you’ve customized them. If so, you might need to re-check and adapt your settings again

  • Fixed sensitivity settings: mouse cursor now takes into account windows settings (mouse speed, window DPI)
  • Made coherent the range of sensitivity sliders in the options men
  • Changing a sensitivity slider is now applied instantly instead of having to apply & close the options menu

New control scheme

  • Added a new control scheme: ‘auto-recentering’
  • It works like in other space games: you still have a cursor whose relative position on screen controls where and how fast you turn, but this cursor is hidden by default (there is an option to make it visible)
  • This cursor automatically moves back towards the screen center after a delay where you don’t move it. This delay can be changed with a slider in the options menu
  • The speed at which the cursor moves back can also be changed through a slider in the options menu
  • This control scehem should feel more natural than the ‘direct mode’ for the mouse, like you’re in better control of the orientation of your ship, so mouse users that do not like the default virtual cursor control scheme and do not find the direct mode to work well, could give this one a try

General bug fixes and improvements

  • Fixed HDR/IBL generation bug that made the whole screen turn white for a long time in certain conditions
  • Fixed server browser ping in the 100-200 ms range being displayed in red/bad instead of yellow/average
  • Fixed a rare bug with credits initially showing as zero on the client upon joining a match, despite the player having more than zero credits on the server
  • Players can now change their call sign/name in game (previously, the change was only applied on joining a server)
  • Fixed drop shadows not appearing correctly below some icons (ex.: team icons at the top of the menu tab had a black square background instead of a drop shadow)
  • Fixed a UI bug that could cause a crash if a panel was being refreshed/rebuilt while scrolling its content
10 Likes
#86

Patch 0.8.4.0 (Saturday 26th June 2021)

Greetings everybody. We apologize for the delay in releasing this new patch. Production has been going slower than anticipated due to a combination of technical factors (we had to change our certification company, we cleaned up project organization and assets for the first time in years, etc…) and new game features (the new sub-targetting system is now in, and allows you to target structural modules on bases or hardpoints). We also reworked the engine’s texture compression, which should lead to an increase of textures quality (no more blocky compression artifacts up close) and saving up VRAM usage.

On the content side, this patch introduces new military ranks, 6 new space stations and 3 new weapons. The flaks were also reworked to be more effective and a new pass has been made on the starmap (yep, again…) to make it interactive (you can now click on icons to select a target instead of having to scroll in the targets panel) and make the camera behavior more intuitive. As this patch has a lot of new content and features, expect new bugs and issues to get addressed in a future patch (this time sooner!) and let us know in the comments section or forums your feedback. Also note that a community event is planned in a few hours this Saturday. See you in game,

-Flavien Brebion

General / Gameplay

  • Added 6 new space stations: 2 large ones (including a remake of the Kickstarter’s Skycrane 35-Km-sized station), 1 medium one (an asteroid processing space factory) and 3 small ones (outposts with no capital ships docks)
  • New light weapon: the railgun. Available on small crafts (MK1/M2 hardpoints), the railgun is a fixed non-converging weapon with a blind zone at short range. It deals a lot of damage but has a low firing rate. The electromagnetic launcher allows very high projectile speeds (3 Km/s, double the typical gun) with no spread and little heat generation at the cost of extra mass, making your ship less maneuverable. The lack of gimbals makes and the low firing rate makes the railgun a powerful but specialized weapon
  • New turret weapon: the railgun turret. This heavy MK4 variant can be mounted on capital ships for point defense. It retains most of the advantages of the light variant, but has a low turret tracking rotation speed and a higher spread
  • New missile launcher: EMP missiles. When these missiles detonate they generate an energetic blast (causing splash damage in a radius of 500m) causing 100 damage to shields and energy reserves
  • Added 2 new default loadouts, one for an interceptor with railguns and an EMP missile launcher; the other one for a railgun-mounted destroyer
  • Implemented docking mechanics to refund/change ship when standing inside a hangar/bay. This can be done through the system menu (escape key) or via the deploy panel in the starmap. This features requires your ship to be fully repaired and not be under fire. Full credits will be refunded
  • Introduced 10+ new military ranks (new low-level officer ranks and new high-level admiral ranks)

Targetting System

  • Added the new sub-targetting system, allowing to target an individual structural module or a hardpoint on a ship or a base
  • A structural module (on a base, for example) can be targetted via the select-target under cursor key (default: T)
  • New input events and keybindings are now available to target a sub-system or a hardpoint on the current target (if there are no targets, these keys do nothing). The defaults are alt-T to select the sub-target under the cursor, alt-Y and alt-U to cycle through the previous/next sub-target respectively
  • A new input event was also added to select the nearest ally (default: alt-G)
  • When a sub-system or hardpoint is targetted, a red square will appear on the current target. The lead reticle and distance indicators will use it as the point of reference
  • Modified the behavior of the unselect-target key (default: backspace) to go back to the parent actor if a module or hardpoint had been targetted
  • Note that the AI currently does not make use of this feature, but this will be a point of focus of an upcoming patch

Balance

  • Revamped explosions splash damage/radius curve: the old curve was so abrupt that it almost never generated splash damage from missiles. The new curve should generate more splash damage from detonating missiles and be a bit more dangerous to being close to a dying capital ship
  • Doubled repair rate of capital ships when docked at spawns. Also slightly increased shields regen rate
  • Repair/resupplying (from a corvette aura or inside a hangar/bay) now gets interrupted for 10 seconds after firing weapons (so you need to wait 10s without firing your weapons before you start getting repaired/resupplied)
  • Rebalanced Flak canons: they now fire in burst with a cooldown (DPS is similar to what it was before) and have a higher projectile velocity, at the cost of splash radius. This should make them more effective against light crafts
  • Tweaked warp speed limit to take into account custom loadout mass changes (this should make it easier for a heavy cruiser to navigate in warp)

HUD

  • Added an alert message on the HUD when your ship is standing in the wrong hangar/bay type and repair/resupply/docking isn’t available
  • Target/throttle speed is now represented as a filled arrow on the HUD’s speed’o’meter
  • Speed’o’meter background color is now darker for speeds above the speed cap, making it easier to see what the cap is
  • Fixed some layout issues with match score and ranks in the main menu or the ship menu (sometimes the font size was too large and text was clipped)
  • Hit feedback icon will now blink and play the ding sound even upon dealing low damage (this was sometimes confusing, as you thought you didn’t hit the target)
  • Fixed interceptor scanner not matching the HUD’s transparency during power fluctuations
  • Added a “reset MFD” button in the general options to reset the MFD layout of a given ship

Deployment Panel

  • Revamped deployment buttons to be more coherent. In the mission map, the deploy button will now properly match the selected mission’s objective (if it’s an allied based) or the starmap’s selected base
  • Deployment buttons from the deployment panel now have better titles to reflect the behavior of the button (you’ll now know if you’re taking over an A.I., or spawning at a carrier…)
  • Added a warning when you’re about to take over an A.I., with a confirmation dialog

Leaderboard Screen

  • Fixed incorrect centering of report screen in ultra-wide resolutions
  • Fixed player’s stats going over a billion on report screen
  • Fixed player’s ships damage stats in report screen not taking armor points reduction into account
  • Fixed leaderboard caching issues when switching to a different server
  • Leaderboard panel now remembers previously selected options after changing to another menu tab

Tab Menus (Starmap, Mission, Loadouts…)

  • Merged star map and mission map view/camera. This should be less confusing, as previously each screen had its own independent camera position/orientation
  • Default star map view will now center on the current Battlescape (=Rethe Prime at the moment)
  • Arrow leading to mission area will no longer be displayed before you haven’t spawned yet (a ‘ghost’ arrow was displayed from the center of the map)
  • Changing the selected mission will no longer change the selected target to be the mission objective’s in the star map list
  • Improvements to starmap’s camera: it will now stay at the same elevation above the grid plane, making it easier to move around when the view is rotated
  • Starmap (/and mission map, as they’ve been merged) is now interactive. It is possible to click on an icon (either a target or a mission) to select it and center the camera on it
  • Double-clicking on an icon will now focus the camera on it and also automatically zoom around it
  • View-reset key (default: double tap left-ctrl) now resets the camera to focus on a target
  • Select-target key (default: T) can now be used on the starmap to select a target
  • R/F keys can now be used on the starmap to zoom in/out on the selected target
  • Mouse wheel will now zoom in/out at the cursor location (so not necessarily on the screen center) which allows to zoom on a location of the starmap and panning the camera at the same time
  • The grid plane is now automatically set on the selected target (previously, it stays on the reference actor, which had to be manually set, and was usually forgotten)
  • Revamped the floating/3D texture size around actors in the starmap’s viewport to be more coherent with the target size
  • The selected target’s name in the viewport is now highlighted in yellow, like in the actors list panel UI
  • The selection sound is now played when changing the selected target or mission on the starmap
  • The ship menu will now show the available system/weapons upgrades even while in-game and not just during spawn. By default, the game only displays the systems currently mounted on your ship
  • Added failure sound when trying to fit a component/weapon on a ship layout while in game (loadouts can only be edited on spawn);

Technical

  • Revamped texture compression to support grayscale, BC5, BC6 and BC7 formats. Without being too technical, these newer compression formats allow the game to reduce VRAM usage while increasing textures quality at the same time (you’ll see less blocky compression artifacts when being close to a texture).
    Internal tests show a reduction of about 1 to 1.5 GB of VRAM in high/extreme quality settings, or about 10-15%. There might be some light performance increases on VRAM or bandwidth-starved video cards.
  • Updated FMOD API to latest version
  • “Default” loadout name text can now be localized in the strings table
  • Fixed “GenericAction” missing sound from log files

Bug fixes

  • Fixed a major client crash/memory corruption issues due to incorrectly calculating a compressed texture’s storage requirements for non-power-of-2 textures
  • Fixed capital ships control scheme not working after being changed on-the-fly in the options menu
  • Fixed camera view instantly jumping around when changing control scheme to capital ship on-the-fly in the options menu
  • Fix for particle child emitters that stopped to work after a few seconds (child emitter’s data was not properly reset after a particle gets recycled from the pool). This caused some hierarhical particle effects to look wrong

GFX

  • Fixed various assets related to cleanup of project
  • Tweaks to ‘space dust’ effect, to make it more noticeable and better take into account the environmental density (aka. no space dust in deep space but more dust in rings!)
  • Fixed shrapnel effect quality when dying: the shrapnel debris will no longer get ejected at crazy speeds near your ship when dying
  • Added a new slider to control the space/skybox background’s brightness in the graphical options
  • Added major ship debris/junk for exploding capital ships. More specialized, larger pieces are also in the workds for a future patch; These debris last 5 minutes on the battlefield before fading off. They can even be collided against or destroyed by firing at them
  • Weapons on light crafts will now better synchronize their firing timing (previously, the left/right guns for ex. on an interceptor could be staggered)
  • Revamped visual effect for: ship explosions, counter-measures/chaffs (they should now be more visible), warp-jam, impacts/sparks, smoke, shrapnel (red glow is less noticeable)
  • Updated glowing material for surface destruction, to make the UV tiling/repetition patterns less noticeable
  • Fixed flak canons mesh size
  • Doubled projectiles brightness, to make them more easily noticeable against busy backgrounds
6 Likes
#87

Patch 0.8.5.0 (Thursday 15th July 2021)

Hey everybody, here’s a new intermediary patch focusing on balance changes and quality-of-life improvements. The next big item on our TODO list is revamping the navigation system (the “tunnel helper” showing up during warp) and generating waypoints for players and bots to navigate through the
solar system. This is an important milestone that will eventually allow the AI to fly between points of interests, instead of warping in/out “magically” as it currently does. We will also introduce new tools available to players to set up a “flight plan”, to better coordinate attacks and follow objectives. This will tie into the next big feature we’ll be working on during summer: the squad/fleet system and VOIP.

-Flavien Brebion

Balance / gameplay changes

  • Railguns now consume energy in addition to normal ammo (Note: it was originally intended to be a hybrid kinetic/energy weapon, but due to lack of time the energy consumption couldn’t make it into the previous patch)
  • Added repair/resupply field to the carrier (Note: does not work on other capital ships, only light ships. The range and rate are slightly more efficient than the corvette’s repair/resupply fields)
  • Reduced base cost and mass of carrier to take into account repair/resupply fields (Note: the goal here was to get the same mass/cost than in the previous versions, repair/resupply fields included)
  • Removed tech level requirement to mount a weapon or component on a ship (Note: this constraint was frustrating to some players. Tech levels are still in game but currently do not affect anything. If we keep this change, we’re planning on introducing team abilities in the future that will be unlocked by the
    tech level)
  • Multiplied by x5 the repair rate of weapons/turrets from repair fields (Note: a corvette repairing a capital ship’s turrets was extremely slow. We’re testing this multiplier to see if it works better)
  • Significantly increased shield regen rate on all capital ships (Note: shields were regenerating at an extremely slow rate. With this change, regeneration is still relatively slow and will take many minutes to reach 100%, but it’ll give a chance of getting back a bit of shields while the ship is in transit)
  • Missile launchers on capital ships now have 12 missiles (from: 6)
  • Torpedo launchers on capital ships now have 12 torpedoes (from: 3); torpedo damage is now set to 5000 (from: 3500) to be coherent with bomber’s torpedoes (Note: the mismatching torpedo damage was likely a typo in the config file)
  • Slight increase of AMS laser damage to 2 (from: 1) (Note: as cruisers now have more missiles and torpedoes, this will likely increase the spam on the battlefield, so AMS laser damage needs to be more powerful to counter them in time)
  • Increased EMP missile damage to 350 (from: 100) (Note: EMP missiles were not dealing enough damage, giving no reason to favor them over kinetic missiles. This might also give a chance to deal some damage to capital ship’s shields)
  • Repair robot and repair crew now self-repair their ship up to a max HP % (50% for repair robot, 25% for repair crew) (Note: most players were confused by this ability. It will now behave as expected, but the amount of damage repaired is capped)
  • Extra missiles upgrade now add +50% missiles (from: +33%)
  • Extra missiles and torpedoes now only cost +5% mass (from +10% and +20%) (Note: +20% mass for some extra torpedoes was a bit extreme, especially on capital ships…)
  • Light repair field repair rate increased to +6 HP/s (from +4 HP/s)
  • Added repair robot parts upgrade, which increases the max repair HP to 100% (from 50%). This requires the repair robot upgrade

Battle reports / ratings

We revamped the scoring and rating system for battle reports and statistics. The previous system emphasized team performance, which caused frustration if you were joining a lost battle (in which case you’d lose rating points even if you did well in battle). The new scoring system should be more fair, giving a chance for players performing well to earn points even if they lost the battle. Another major change is the normalization of the scoring calculations. In the previous versions, the score was calculated by weighting in the kill count, assists, deaths, damage and repair/resupply dealt. Kills in particular were all identical: a destroyer killing a dozen interceptors counted as 12 points, while a cruiser killing a cruiser only counted as 1 point. The new system better takes into account ship classes into account, and a capital ship destroying another capital ship will bring more points than, say, an interceptor killing another interceptor. Another problem was that the old formula was too weighted towards damage, which naturally favored capital ships play. The new formula still takes damage into account, but the weighting is lower, giving a chance for light crafts to earn as many points as capital ship players.

The new rating formula is no longer based on the difference between team ratings, but on the individual score performance during the battle, to which a bonus/malus of +15/-15 is added based on the battle result. This means that the best players on the winning team should earn the most, while bad players can potentially lose some rating points, even if they were on the winning team. In the same way, the best players on the losing team can still get a positive rating if they performed well. Let us know in the comments if you think the rating system is going in the right direction or if you feel there are still some major issues to address.

Quality-of-life improvements

  • Fixed no chaff left message on capital ship, now explicitely tells that chaffs aren’t available
  • Added half-cruiser ship wreckage upon explosion (note: this is a cruiser-specific debris, instead of the generic debris introduced in the previous patch)
  • Ships that dock & refund do not generate a kill or griefing notification/increase kill stats upon ships that had fired at them anymore
  • Tweaks to ship loadout screen: rank requirements and costs are now displayed even if already in game (not just on spawn)
  • Revamped coloring rules for weapon/component cards to be more consistent: blue=available, green=already mounted, orange=max reached but mountable, red=unavailable (rank requirement, not enough credits etc…)
  • Weapon/component cards and info panel now show the rank requirement level and icon
  • The take-over-AI confirmation dialog will now popup from the mission screen upon clicking on the deploy button for a given mission
  • Repair robot/crew now displays the “repair in progress” alert on the HUD
  • Added lights to the new station’s modules

Bug fixes

  • Fixed dock & refund option not available to carriers
  • Fixed eject button not being properly grayed-out while dying/ejecting
  • Fixed a bug that caused the asteroid-processing facility (Perseus Stn) to mess up the background halo size on the starmap, making the whole starmap covered by a single color
  • Fixed corvette missile hardpoints firing upwards instead of frontwards
6 Likes
#88

Hotfix 0.8.5.1 (Saturday 17th July 2021)

Fixed top 3 podium in battle reports screen showing large numbers (billions) when a player’s score is negative

4 Likes
#89

Patch 0.8.6.0 (Wednesday 27th October 2021)

Hey everyone. Today’s patch is transitory, as we’re still heavily working on the squad/fleet system and VOIP. It introduces a brand new way waypoints/flight plan system. At the moment, its usage is quite limited but it will eventually become the foundation for other important systems such as the squad system (you’ll be able to share your waypoints or targets with your teammates), AI improvements (fleet coordination), tutorials/mission editor (following a path…).

But as those features are not available yet, the waypoints system has currently limited purposes. You are able to use it from the starmap (or tactical view) by right-clicking and using the context menu to clear/add or set a waypoint as active. The current active waypoint also shows up on the HUD and on radars.

Speaking of radars, we revamped them to be more coherent between each other, added new information (the velocity now shows up in the radars) and we introduced a new radar type (available in game through the MFD-edit key: F4): the dual parabaloid radar. It merges the front and back radars into one view, where the iner circle represents what’s in front, and the outer edge what’s behind. We are experimenting with some tweaks to make the gimbal weapons more skill based (reducing their angular range and spread), added a lag pip (some players have been asking for it for years!) and introduced a HUD minimalistic mode for experienced players that know how the HUD already works and want to declutter it a bit. Let us know in the comments if you find these useful or not.

Finally, this patch includes a rework for the smog (battle smoke) effect, to make it look more impressive, at the cost of more performance. If you find your performance has degraded too much inside big battles, we recommend switching the smog quality setting back to “medium”, which should more or less correspond to the old setting. We’ve also added an option to display short smoke trails behind small ships in space, which could be useful to see small ships in the distance in a big battle, especially if they don’t show up on your HUD as targets. Last but not least, we’ve completely revamped the death sequence for all ships with new visual effects, explosions and debris, and shortened the small ship’s explosions to be instant.

We are planning on releasing the patch focusing on the squad system and VOIP in about a month, after which we will resume work on new core gameplay systems.

-Flavien Brebion

General features

  • Added support for mission/flight plan with waypoints. At the moment you can only add waypoints, but later on in the mission editor you will be able to add targets or objectives between waypoints

Balance / gameplay changes

  • Reduced gimbal weapon’s angle by more than half, and increased their spread. We are experimenting this change to make the game more skill-aiming based, keeping in mind that new players still need to have a chance at killing a target without pixel-perfect accuracy…
  • Missiles/Torps no longer detonate when too close (< 1 km) of their source upon expiring (lifetime exceeded or target lost)
  • Reduced pushback force caused by massive explosions shockwaves

Radars

  • Polish pass over HUD radars: increased size of front/back radars by +30% (to fit the MFD page), targets are now bigger when closer, more readable… added waypoints to radars
  • Introduced new radar MFD page: Dual radar, which merges the front+back radars together into one single view (the iner circle is what’s in front, the outer circle is what’s behind the ship, aka. dual paraboloid projection)
  • Fixed radars not rendering on cockpit MFDs with HUD mode disabled
  • Fixed broken sensors and HUD targetting not behaving properly on radars

HUD / UI / menu fixes or improvements

  • Fixed negative rating change going to a large number after a battle
  • Fixed top 3 scores in battle reports showing up as large numbers when they’re negative
  • Improved layout of HUD/MFD target information around the right HUD center (name, distance, speed etc…) to be cleaner and more compact (horizontal alignment was messy)
  • HUD is now displayed in third-person capital ship control scheme, even if applied to a smaller ship like the corvette (this allows the corvette to be playable with the cap ships control scheme)
  • Introduced ‘navigation’ color into HUD color theme (currently used to show navigation points). In the default green color-scheme, navigation-related targets show up in orange/yellow
  • Added lag pip to HUD
  • Added a setting to switch between lag and lead pip/reticle (default is still lead pip)
  • Added a keybinding to switch between lag and lead pip in game (default: unbound)
  • Introduced HUD Smart (Minimalistic) experimental mode that automatically hides some HUD elements based on the context
  • Reduced minimum combat, ring and navigation targets setting to zero (sliders in HUD settings) (previously, the minimum number of displayable targets was 3 for all of these)
  • Updated default MFDs for small ships in anticipation of the new Dual radar and the future Squads system
  • Loadout MFDs at the bottom of the screen now packs the weapons list downwards to save space
  • New experimental set of aim reticle icons for lead/lag pips (the previous one was too opaque and cluttered the target)
  • Modal dialogs (or context menus) can now be closed by clicking outside the window area

Visual effects

  • Improvements and new effects for capital ship’s death sequence + tuned death sequence parameters
  • Small ships death sequence was shortened: the explosion is now instant, to have more immediate feedback
  • Dying ships now play their engine/power damaged sound ambiance loop
  • Added small ship’s trails in space + an option for it (default: off). This allows to see small ships in the distance, especially if you’re playing on a limited amount of navigation/combat displayable targets over the HUD
  • Improved smog and added a quality setting dedicated to smog: denser/more opaque, darker, wider particles, to give a better sense of “terrain in space”

Disclaimer: the new smog settings can be more performance-hungry than the old one. A rough equivalent of the old smog would correspond to “medium” quality. High and Extreme quality will consume more performance than before

6 Likes
#90

Patch 0.8.6.1 (Saturday 30th October 2021)

A minor update with a few bug fixes and HUD targetting improvements that were suggested by the community.

  • Improvements to HUD targetting: added H key to target incoming MTB (missile/torpedo/bomb), added alt+H to target closest support ship (for repair/resupply)
  • Added message notifications when HUD targetting fails for some reason
  • Target hovered by mouse cursor is now always selectable (previously, it could sometimes fail in some conditions due to being in the wrong HUD mode, like combat vs navigation)
  • Loadout MFD will now dim a weapon group that has no weapon ready to fire (ex.: on cooldown)
  • Improved dual radar frontal view angle distortion (targets in front will be less cluttered at the centered of the radar)
  • Revamped target selector to prioritize dynamic targets like ships instead of static targets with modules (ex.: it was hard to select a flying ship in front of a base module/building)
  • The target selector will no longer ignore targets that currently do not have an indicator (due to the limitation in max navigation/combat indicators displayed in the options menu)
  • The target selector will now ignore selection of static modules that are too far away (> 50 Km) at the expense of their “parent” base
  • Added more persistent ship shrapnel/debris on the battlefield
5 Likes
#91

Patch 0.8.7.0 (Saturday 18th December 2021)

Hey everyone. This is the last big patch before the end of the year. This patch introduces the first iteration of the squad system (only as a flat list of squads for now, but in the future we want a full hierarchical system with wings and fleets).

This also includes voice-over-IP (VOIP). There are a lot of technical considerations behind VOIP, so make sure to report any audio issues you might encounter. Also of interest, this patch revamps the weapon projectiles effects (going from simple 2D billboards to 3D in most cases), an update to the bloom filter (there’s also a slider to tone it down in the graphical options, if you don’t like it), a new active ability for the corvette to repair targets at a range (the repair beam) and much more. One limitation is that due to lack of time, the waypoints system isn’t squad-shared yet, but note that we’ve introduced a new squad-target mechanism (default: ctrl-T if you’re the squad leader) that shares the leader’s target with all the squad members.

As usual, please report any bug you’ve found and have fun. Most of the game systems have now been implemented into the game, so next year we’ll be moving on to the major gameplay loop upgrade, introducing new shields mechanisms, rebalancing some weapons, adding orbital bombardment (nukes, already in WIP), the carrier revamp + new hauler, massive AI improvements (AI attacking bases, flying in squads…) and battles sub-objectives/staging. It will likely take the first half of the year, at least, to implement all of these. During the second half of the year we’ll finally start the polishing phase, tutorials and mission editor, with a tentative release date in EOY 2022 or H1 2023.

-Flavien Brebion

Squad system

  • Added the squads menu to the in-game menu system (TAB)
  • Players can create their own private or public teams, or quickly auto-join any squad that has an open position
  • The first player to create a squad becomes its leader, and has leader-restricted management options over the squad
  • The leader can promote another member as the new leader
  • The leader can rename the squad, or write a new description that will show up in the squads list
  • The leader can kick/ban a member, but also clear all the bans. Note that this is persistent only until the server reboots
  • The leader can change the squad access rights (private/public)
  • Note that it will be possible to password-protect squads, but this is not implemented yet (option is disabled for now)
  • The player can mute/unmute any squad member. Note that this is persistent only until the server reboots
  • Implemented the squad MFD to show the list of squad members, including name, distance, rank, ship class (colored by health status)
  • It is possible to target a squad member’s ship via hotkeys alt-1 (leader) to alt-8 (other squad members)
  • Added a key for the squad leader to share a target amongst all squad members (default: ctrl + T)
  • Squad members show up as icons + their name in the starmap
  • The waypoints system is not compatible with the squads implementation just yet (but this is coming…)

VOIP Implementation

  • Added a control to select the recording device in the audio settings menu (the game will default to Windows’s default recording device)
  • Added a voice meter in the audio settings menu to see the recording volume level
  • Added a loopback option in the audio settings menu, to listen to yourself talking
  • Added the ability to mute players
  • Added the ability to toggle voice chat/VOIP in the audio settings menu
  • Added a push-to-talk option + a key binding. If left unused/unassigned, voice recording will be permanent. By default push-to-talk is enabled and the default hotkey is “C”
  • Due to moving the push-to-talk key to “C”, we had to move around the other radial menu keys. “X” is now the voice commands menu (previously on “C”), “B” is now the flight menu (previously on “X”) and the formations cycling mode was moved to the “N” key.
    Basically we shifted all the radial menus one key to the right to leave room for the push-to-talk key “C”.
  • Added an audio slider for the sound effects volume, and another one for the voice playback volume

Balance / Gameplay

  • Reduced Flak canons generated heat by -20% when firing
  • Reduced Flak canons spread by -15% (this should improve their precision a little bit)

Note: some technical problems were detected with Flak detonation, which due to the physics step does not always explode at the accurate/predicted target location. This will be investigated and fixed in a later patch.

  • Introduced a new MK4 “weapon” ability for the corvette: the repair beam
  • This beam can repair the hull or turrets of a selected target at a pretty fast rate
  • Multiple beams can stack, however this will draw energy faster
  • The beam repairs weapons at a faster rate than the armor/hull
  • Added a “beam booster” weaponry upgrade that increases even more the repair rate, reduces the energy cost, at the expense of shields regeneration
  • Fixed typos in AMS laser damage upgrade (this was overheating way too quickly, making the upgrade useless)

HUD / UI / menu fixes or improvements

  • Fixed modal dialogs that could be clicked outside of window to get closed (note: contextual menus can still be clicked outside to close them)
  • Fixed quick mouse right-click (rotation) on starmap that caused waypoints context menu to open accidentally, it should now be more stable
  • Damaged weapons can now be sub-target selected again (this is needed for the corvette repair beams)

Visual effects

  • Remade all weapons projectiles. The new projectiles are no longer simple billboards, and most of them have some extra 3D geometry to better show their shape in the distance, making them more easily recognizable in battles. They also have extra animations, twitling tails and more details, making them have a higher visual impact during battles.

  • Improvements to HDR bloom filter: better fade off/range, better quality

  • Added a slider to control bloom intensity in the graphical settings menu

  • Fixed smog streaks (smog particles being strangely aligned) due to a floating-point precision issue

  • Fixed smog being sometimes rendered on top of other projectile/effects, hidding them despite them being closer

  • Fixed bouncing projectiles not having a proper offset off the hit surface, intersecting geometry

  • Added new Moon bobblehead (bobbleheads are currently randomized every time you spawn. Later they’ll be tied to your account’s persistent rewards)

Bug fixes

  • Fixed a server crash related to the mission system
  • Fixed issue with mapping of ground bases that was repeated multiple times per second, causing some slowdowns/framerate stuttering at spawn times
  • Fixed server crash bug if an admin tries to kill a planet/moon
  • Fixed ships that could still fire their weapons during their death sequence
  • Fixed collision issues happening between ships and geometry in the hangar/spawn locations

Other

  • Fixed localization issues in keybindings menu and weapons/loadout MFD
  • More localization/strings updates for 0.8.6.0
4 Likes
#92

Patch 0.8.7.1 (Monday 20th December 2021)

A small patch that contains many improvements and stability fixes related to 0.8.7.0.

Gameplay

  • Warp jam cooldown now only affects ships that were in warp (previously, ships not in warp had their warp cooldown activated if they were in the jam bubble). This should make it easier to catch up a fleeing ship
  • Fixed lasers (AMS and repair beam’s) precision issues when targetting turrets on a capital ship (half the time, no hit was detected);
  • Fixed being able to control the ship (turn it around etc…) while dying

HUD / UI / Menus

  • Fixed incorrect default deploy base after a death / despawn. This will now properly select the closest base to your death location
  • Fixed target info MFD not showing target’s hull percentage when it’s between 0 and 1%
  • Fixed floating objectives on HUD (mission targets, closest resupply base/ship, etc… ) still being displayed when sensors are damaged/broken
  • Fixed viewed station appearing highlighted in yellow on the starmap when the player is dead
  • Added a new keybinding (empty by default, but recommended keybind would be on SPACE if you’re not using the brakes) to “Show all targets”. When holding this key, all targets within a 1000 Km distance will be displayed on the HUD
  • Increased max limit number of displayable navigation and combat targets on HUD from 50 to 200 (note: the ring radar’s limit remains 50)
  • Fixed HUD still being rendered / powered on while dying;
  • Fixed “server connection trouble” icon not being rendered at the bottom-left corner of the screen as it should
  • Added a notification text + sound when the squad leader selects a new squad target
  • Fixed a bug with the selection order of a squad member when using alt-1 to alt-8 when the squad leader isn’t the first member of the squad
  • Squad MFD now highlights lightly-damaged ships (50-75%) in yellow (previously, it used the same color above all >50%)
  • Fixed trade routes appearing as ghost objects in the ship, stats or squad menus

General / Misc

  • Fixed audio bug with ambient looping sounds that fade off after a while, never returning during the game session
  • Fixed client crash bug in squad MFD
  • Fixed a bug in the automatic keybindings profile upgrader that caused a mess with some events due to an incorrect version (Note: if you have trouble with your inputs in this patch, try to reset them to defaults)
  • Reverted change for max network packet size from 4K back to 1K bytes. Suspecting issues with players unable to connect to servers
  • Push-to-talk now has a “buffer” of 1 extra second when it’ll continue recording voice after releasing the push-to-talk key (often players released the push-to-talk key too soon and their voices was cut at the end of a sentence)
  • VOIP is no longer consuming bandwidth when a player has voice chat enabled but isn’t in a squad yet
  • Fixed order of rendering smog effect vs planetary wind/dust effects vs asteroid ring’s mist/dust effects
  • Fixed voice chat volume not being affected by the global audio volume
  • Fixed a client crash related to multithreading + networking + VOIP
4 Likes
pinned #93
#94

Patch 0.8.8.0 (Saturday 12th March 2022)

This patch mostly focuses on gameplay balance changes, including a major damage model update. Meanwhile we’ve started our gameplay redesign/revamp phase to tighten the match loop and improve the battle experience. We’re not ready to communicate on these yet (we need to implement the changes internally first and playtest them) but as soon as we do, we’ll make a major announcement. This means that the next few months are probably going to slow down in terms of public patches: we’ll mostly focus on balance updates (the damage model change in this update will probably mess up with the balance quite a bit, and need further adjustments), bug fixes and UI improvements.

Gameplay

Damage model

The most important gameplay change in this patch is an update to the damage model. All weapons now deal both kinetic (versus hull) and energy (versus shields) damage. Weapons that were previously considered kinetic (ex.: the machine gun) will deal a lot more kinetic than energy damage meaning that
kinetics are no longer the most effective way to weaken shields. In the same way, blasters can now damage the target’s hull and even finish it off. The weapons stats and DPS were rebalanced so that a mixed composition between kinetics and blasters is viable, versus all-kinetics configurations that
we saw in previous versions of the game (ex.: 4 Halcyons on the interceptor). The most kinetic damage a weapon deals and the less effective it will be against shields, and vice-versa. The extreme example of this is with railguns and plasma cutters, which still have a high DPS assuming you’re using
them against the right type of target.

  • Updated damage model for missile/torpedoes/mines explosions and splash damage: distribution of damage is now proportional to shield percentage (Ex.: at 50% shields, 50% of the total damage will be dealt to the shields and the remaining 50% to the hull)
  • Updated ship loadout/info cards to show both kinetic and energy DPS. Revamped a bit the weapons info panel to be less cluttered and only show the significant stats (note: still a WIP, missing a description for each weapon)
  • Updated AI to be smarter about weapons selection. They will now properly switch to other weapons when on cooldowns, over-heating, damaged or low on energy; expect the bots to frequently switch between kinetics and energy weapons on offense
  • Collisions damage is now purely kinetic and will ignore shields
  • Auto-firing AI turrets on capital ships will no longer ignore low-damagable targets if they have no better targets (previously, a kinetic turret wouldn’t fire on a target with high shields and a blaster turret wouldn’t fire on a target with low shields)

Weapons balance

  • Increased precision of all auto-aiming weapons (note: this will make capital ships more dangerous, be careful)
  • Updated hardpoint class of some weapons (flaks are now MK4 and can no longer be mounted on MK5s; same for railgun turrets)
  • Capital ships can no longer mount normal missile/torpedo launchers (only the array variants)
  • Railguns have been rebalanced with a higher firing rate and the ability to hit targets from a higher distance (up to 8 Km) which could give it an edge over standard weapons (which typically have a max range of 4 Km)
  • Capital ships MK4 repeater guns/blasters have been improved and should now feel more useful against small targets
  • Capital ships MK5 turret guns/blasters were also previously in a bad spot. They now deal significant and almost continuous damage against capital ships
  • Fixed gimbal turn speed and radius for Halcyons and Plasma cutters which was set far too high. They are now similar to other gimbaled guns

Ships balance

These changes were done to further refine these ships into their respective roles:

  • Removed all MK7 turrets from carrier (carriers are supposed to stay on the defensive side, therefore MK7s are not fitting their role)
  • Significantly increased carrier’s maneuverability (linear and rotational thrust) and small increase of speed cap (we felt the carrier was dragging the whole fleet behind in terms of movement)
  • Removed 8 MK4 turrets from cruiser (we felt it had too good defensive small ships capabilities, which is supposed to be done by destroyers)
  • Small updates to default loadouts for capital ships (due to refitting the hardpoint classes of some weapons)

Upgrades

New available upgrades for ship loadouts:

  • Shield regen II: Boosts the shield regen rate by +50% at the expense of reducing the shield capacity by -30%. While the shield capacity reduction seems a huge downside, the faster regen might be very interesting especially in combination of the damage model update that will make kinetic weapons far less effective against a quickly recharging shield
  • Piercing ammo: Reinforced ammunition for kinetic weapons, negating a certain amount of armor plating points. Has no effect on targets without armor plating (like the interceptor) or shields
  • Gyro boost: Boosts gyro thrusters rotational acceleration by +50%. Does not affect maximum turn speed, making turning your ship more reactive, not faster

Flight Model

  • Fixed flight model for roll in most control schemes: when going back to idle (you stop rolling the ship), the torque force did not go down to zero as fast as it could, taking slightly too long
  • Removed ramp up propulsion factor in the flight model that often acted quirky. Replaced it by a speed cap when flying inside hangars (60 m/s) and garages (20 m/s)

We adjusted rotational thrust on small ships to better match the max rotational speed and feel a bit more responsive. This will mostly affect the roll axis:

  • Slight increase (+27%) to Interceptor’s roll acceleration and slight decrease (-15%) in max roll speed
  • Large increase (+60%) to Bomber’s roll acceleration
  • Large increase (+50%) to Corvette’s roll acceleration

Flight plan

Flight plans are now functional when you’re in a squad. The squad leader’s flight plan is automatically shared in real-time amongst the squad members. The squad members can still show or edit their local flight plan, by toggling a mode in the right-click context menu on the starmap.

They can toggle back any time this mode to display again the squad leader’s flight plan.

HUD / UI / Menus

  • Fixed starmap’s filter options window which duplicated after toggling an option on/off
  • Updated ship info panel (on the left side) in the ship tab menu. We cleaned the panel, split it into two tabs (one for general info, one for detailed stats) and revamped the way the stats show up as a bar (they will now all default to the middle, and show relative increases/decreases bonuses based on ship upgrades). We think this will make it easier to see at a glance what stats are affected by an upgrade
  • Chat box now shows up in ship info panel in the bottom-left corner. The chatbox utilized a lot of layout space in all the menu tabs. We’re considering removing the chat box from all these menu tabs, and instead replacing it with an icon that can be explicitely opened when you want to chat. This might get implemented in a future patch unless we see feedback that having the chat box opened at all time in all menus is requested from players
  • Added options to show FPS, Tricount, Ping, Network stats and Input thrust in general settings

Input / Controls

  • Updates to input mapper and key detection: added new options for key combos in key bindings menu
  • Fix for square vs circular-shaped joysticks axes
  • Fix for paired axes when applying power curve
  • Fix for deadzone in square axes corners
  • Added a new Legacy control scheme specifically for mouse (was old Direct control scheme for mouse)
  • Introduced a new control scheme specifically for Joysticks/Gamepads/HOTAS (was old Direct control scheme for joysticks). The game should automatically upgrade the old “Direct control” into this one when you launch the game with this patch the first time

General / Misc

  • Fix for Chinese IMEs (mouse clicks no longer work, Win32 message loop does not receive mouse events anymore)
  • Tweaks to default input configuration for XBox controller
4 Likes
#95

Patch 0.8.9.0 (Sunday 10 April 2022)

This patch contains improvements, bug fixes and tweaks mostly related to the damage model changes introduced in 0.8.8.0. It should also improve client and server stability as 3 important crash bugs were identified and fixed.

Please also note that we decided to shut down the US West and Australia servers to consolidate our player base as these two servers sometimes saw no players for entire days or weeks. We may reintroduce them for 1.0 if there is demand for it.

Gameplay / Balance

  • Fixed warp interruption that was getting triggered on environmental damage even if the shields were at 100%. It will now only trigger when shields are depleted
  • Fixed AMS laser not being affected by shields. Since they do no energy damage, AMS lasers will no longer affect any target that has shields up;
  • Fixed damage model’s energy depletion that happens when energy damage hits depleted shields. It should now be coherent for all weapon/damage types
  • Fixed AI corvette kinetic/blaster turrets all firing at the same time, which players cannot do
  • AI rank/skill level will now be taken into account for the reactivity time to switch between weapon types (kinetic vs blasters) on smaller ships (previously it was a constant time no matter the AI skill level)
  • Added a reactivity/delay factor for taking the target’s acceleration into consideration for turret’s lead auto aim. This should make the turret’s aiming less precise but still take their target’s acceleration into account. The problem with not taking acceleration into account at all is that ships are constantly moving and adjusting their course, meaning that they’re always under some form of acceleration. If turrets do not take acceleration into account, they basically have almost no change of hitting their target unless it’s very close. That was the problem in the previous versions of the game. Now the turrets will try to estimate their target’s acceleration, but with a delay, which should feel more human-like/natural, while still giving them the chance to hit a far-away target that moves in a predictable course
  • Updated battle rating calculation after a battle ends: the number of points gained/lost is no longer symmetrical. The higher your rating, the more difficult it will be to increase it further. The lower your rating, the more difficult it’ll be to decrease it further. This means that players with a very high rating will not be able to increase it higher all that much, but will easily lose their points when they die/lose in a battle
  • Added 4 new propulsion loadout upgrades: lateral boost, forward boost, pitch boost and yaw boost
  • Reverted converging angle rotation speeds on converging weapons (halcyons and plasma cutters). Increased their spread a bit to be less binary at distance; Increased their projectile speeds and max range (now 5 Km)

Bug fixes

  • Introduced fall backs if crashes do not generate a minidump/log file, as many users had reported crashes that did not generate a dump file in their documents folder
  • Fixed a client crash related to a short desync between client and server information, which caused the HUD to look up for an icon that does not exist
  • Fixed two server crashes related to the squad system when a player is leaving a squad or disconnecting from the game while still being in a squad
  • Fixed “show input rotation forces” that could still get displayed on the tactical view screen, or in third-person camera. It will now only show up in first-person/cockpit view
  • Fixed ship debris spawned upon despawning at a hangar/docking bay
  • Fixed issues when loading obsolete/no longer coherent hardpoint layouts
  • Fixed energy weapons that were able to pierce/bounce off hulls like kinetics when they shouldn’t

HUD / UI / Controls

  • Fixed target selection utilizing hidden navigation cursor in joystick control scheme. Now utilizes the screen center as the reference
  • Fixed dot reticle displayed at screen center when looking around with the camera or in TrackIR mode
  • In the ship loadout menu, the details stats will be the default tab (instead of the ship’s general info) if the player is sufficiently experienced
  • Swapped social/squads and stats/leaderboard tabs in the main menu

Misc

  • Replaced repair beam impact sound effect with a new one
  • French localization file update thanks to Argopeilacos
5 Likes
#96

Development update

Hey everybody. Before I get into the defailts of this new patch, I would like to take just a bit of time to explain where we are in the development process and where we are heading in the coming months.

As you may have noticed, we have recently released a new major update to the game. This update revamped the entire match loop, progression system and introduced asymmetry in the battles through battle staging. Each faction has to accomplish a number of objectives (attacking or protecting various structures around bases) to lead their team to victory. The feedback we have received from players on the new battle staging system has been overwhelmingly positive, but we are still fighting against a number of issues, mostly related to balance. The new update has introduced a lot of new factors to the equation and balancing has become much more difficult than before. We feel like we still have ways to go (probably until the whole 1.0 release, to be fair) before balance is in a good place, but we’re doing progress every day, and that is why players feedback is very important.

We haven’t posted a full patch note for the new 0.9 version, as there were too many changes to be listed. However, starting from today’s patch we’ll resume posting patch notes as usual. If you haven’t played for a while and want to understand the big picture about what has been changed in 0.9, you can still read the update that we posted a few months ago:

So where does that lead us ? First of all, the 0.9 gameplay revamp version took a lot of effort (and continuous crunch for many months) so we’re using summer to slow down the pace a little bit, recharge our batteries and finish various gameplay experiments (for example, in today’s patch we’re introducing shield crossing penalties).

In parallel we’ve been working on the Cruiser’s spinal weapon canon, which should be available in a patch before september (we’re also aiming at finishing the carrier revamp and AI coordination/improvements by september). Once september comes, we’re going to shift our focus towards shipping the game. That means a lot of development related to the database systems/backend (the progression system working accross servers for example), more UI improvements, and starting the work on tutorials/sandbox/solo mode.In parallel, our artists will start working on progression-system related rewards (medals, skins, bobbleheads, statues etc…) and we’ll integrate them into the game.

We are looking at a 1.0 release some time in the first half of 2023.

Patch 0.9.3.0 (Wednesday 10 August 2022)

There are three big changes in this patch. The first one is a change in the targetting behavior of turrets, to increase their efficiency. They will now pre-rotate towards their target even if it’s out of view
(below the turret’s view horizon, or slightly out of range) to be ready to fire at it the instant it becomes hitable. In practise, this means that turrets deal damage sooner than before. AMS were already powerful, but this change to turrets behavior made them even more overpowered, so we had to nerf AMS. As a consequence, we also nerfed a little bit torpedoes by reverting some experimental changes we did in earlier patches. Please provide feedback on the new balance of AMS versus torpedoes and whether the bomber is in a good place versus capital ships.

The second big change introduces a penalty for attackers crossing an enemy base (or carrier’s) spherical shield. The penalty instantly drains shield points (more for bigger ships) as a function of shield status, and also causes the shield generate rate to go down while staying within the shield.

For example, if a station’s shield is at full capacity (100%), an enemy interceptor crossing the shield will lose 20% of its shield points, while a cruiser will lose 100% of them. As the shield gets damaged, the penalty gets weaker as well. This will give an edge to the defenders in the early stage of the battle which might help to balance the victory odds between attackers and defenders. It is possible that attackers are still favored, so please let us know if the balance of attackers vs defenders during battles is going in the right direction or needs more drastic changes as we suspect.

Finally, the rewards system was rewritten. Objective points now get rewarded for accomplishing objectives, and the player will receive a credits bonus when the battle ends. Objective points are also given as a reward for protecting objectives (by destroying enemy ships that were previously attacking the base and damaging it) or as support for repairing/resupplying allies. Here again please let us know if it is too easy or hard to obtain objective points depending on your actions.

Gameplay changes

  • Multiple turrets targetting behavior changes that should make them more reliable, and prioritize more than primary target that was selected (also: turrets will pre-rotate towards their target even if it’s out of view or slightly out of range.
    Previously, the turret was resetting its orientation to idle the moment the target become out of view or range, which made a lot of turrets ping-pong between idle orientation and a new target). Overall, turrets should now anticipate their rotation towards their target before they start firing at them.
  • Laser AMS turrets will now pre-oriente towards an enemy bomber before it has fired a torpedo, maximizing damage time on fired torpedoes as soon as they’re launched
  • Repair field is no longer interrupted when target is using its weapons
  • Resupply field is no longer interrupted when target is being damaged
  • Note that these two last changes also apply to spawns/hangars. This change should make the repair/resupply fields more reliable as they tended to easily get interrupted. This also means that you can use your weapons while you’re getting repaired
  • Missiles and torpedoes no longer detonate on death (only on direct impact or near their target) (Note: mines still detonate on death and cause splash damage). They simply explode, causing minimal damage, instead of causing massive splash damage as before
  • Implemented shield interference system (shield points and regen rate are reduced when crossing an enemy base’s shield)
  • Revamped behavior of “G” key (select nearest threat) to priority ships attacking or targetting you (hopefully this time it’ll be more in line with players feedback);

Rewards / Battle reports

  • Revamped reward system to give objective points when accomplishing objectives (and also a credits bonus when the battle ends)
  • Protecting objectives (killing enemies that have been attacking objectives) now provides objective points
  • Repairing/resuppling allies now provides objective points for support
  • Revamped battle reports graphs (now showing attack vs defense power momentum, but there’s also a graph for objective points earned, and differen colors)
  • The battle reports dialog is now modal (takes priority over the rest of the UI)

Balance tweaks

  • Updated default cruiser hardpoints layout (especially the position and orientation of MK4 hardpoints);
  • Doubled HP of station core reactor (to make it more difficult to get destroyed by attackers)
  • Reduced HP on missiles
  • Torpedo changes: small reduction of thrust power; decreased activation time to 3s (from 4s)
  • Added Phalanx MK4 CIWS turret (high DPS but low range)
  • Reduced damage of Railgun MK4 turret to 6 (from 8); reduced its turn rate to 25°/s (from 30°/s); slightly increased its lifetime to match the range of the fixed railgun variant
  • Reduced bomber’s default torpedo capacity to 10 (from 14)
  • Increased Repair crew’s mass to 10% (from 5%) and added a negative effect on energy recharge rate (-10%)
  • Increased carrier’s Heavy repair field’s range to 2 Km (from 1.5 Km)
  • Increased Flak MK4 turret’s DPS (fire rate and burst damage) and reduced its mass to 30t (from 50t)
  • Reduced Laser AMS MK3 turret’s damage by half; incrreased its turn speed to 60°/s (from 45°/s) (Note: AMS became too powerful with the turrets targetting/behavior change)
  • Increased Repair Beam MK3’s turret rotation speed to 45°/s (from 25°/s)
  • Tweaks to Heracles MK7 Turret: reduced yaw range to 50° (from 60°) and increased its DPS (also reduced heat generation)-
  • Tweaks to Thunderbolt MK7 Turret: reduced yaw range to 50° (from 70°) and increased its DPS significantly

Bug fixes

  • Fixed chat box that could be opened through escape sequence conflict ctrl+m
  • Fix for respawn countdown with large value (hours of waiting) upon ship refund, after the match has restarted

HUD / UI / Controls

  • Added weapons descriptions to ship menu
  • Weapon DPS showed in ship menu now takes into account damage rate (for lasers/beams)
  • Counter-measures count is no longer displayed on HUD when CMs are not available (like on capital ships)
  • HUD now displays the amount of mines left below counter-measures (will also flash orange when under cooldown)

Misc

  • Added new Thunderbolt MK7 and Heracles MK7 projectiles effects
3 Likes
#97

Patch 0.9.4.0 (Thursday 24 November 2022)

Orbital bombardment has cometh ! Fear the spinal cruiser and its long range spinal canon. In this patch we’re introducing a new chassis system for all ships. The different chassis change the base stats (some chassis have a higher amount of hitpoints, or armor, but less shields, and so on) and provide a different hardpoints layout. Some chassis will favor lighter hardpoints with maybe more upgrade slots, while a heavier chassis would have higher mark hardpoints with less available upgrade slots. We tried to provide at least one new chassis variant per ship, but we have ideas to expand on the chassis system in the future.

The spinal cruiser is a variant of the default cruiser. A massive spinal canon, dealing 40K damage per shot every 30s after charging, can be mounted on its bow. The spinal cruiser only has light defense turrets, so it is weak to stronger capital ships and becomes an important target to take down during battles.

The land base assault gameplay loop has been revamped. Our previous implementation, back in June, was only half of the puzzle, as we were missing the orbital bombardment stage as we had envisionned. With the spinal cruiser able to bombard the base from low orbit, the battle gets split in two areas of operation: smaller ships mostly focus on ground objectives while capital ships stay in orbit, to protect or attack other capital ships.

As you can imagine, all those changes have made the high-level balancing equation much more complex. We still need months of work to tweak values everywhere and take all scenarios into account. At the moment, it is possible that a side is favored more than the other one, or that battles with pure AI get stuck or progress awfully slow. We’ll try to address those problems as soon as we can, but we can only do so much in our local tests with only AI, so any feedback you provide in terms of balance with players involved is precious to us.

In this patch we’re also introducing a bunch of new weapons and upgrades. See the list below for details. A gray HUD color theme is now available for players with information overload. And as usual, a long list of bugs have been fixed (and new ones introduced, no doubt about it… ).

You may be wondering what’s next ? After we stabilize this new version (with a minor patch addressing the most urgent bugs or balance issues in the coming days or weeks), we’ll move on to the final piece of gameplay: the carrier revamp (and the ability to deploy and give orders to AI squads). This will require heavy improvements to the AI, especially in the way they (currently don’t) coordinate with each others or with players. There is no ETA for the next major patch, but heads up: it is unlikely to be by the end of this year.

We’ve seen a rise of players in the past few months and sales have been increasing, despite our lack of marketing (which we reserve for our 1.0 release next year). We’re pretty happy about that and to see more activity on the servers. Let us know your feedback about the game, what could be improved, what confused you the most at first (unfortunately tutorials will probably be one of the last features we work on) and what you’d like to see in the game in the future. See you in battle and have fun !

-Flavien Brebion

New Chassis System

  • Introduced a chassis variant system for all ships. They are available for customization through the loadout system. You can select a loadout with a non-standard chassis variant and customize it as before in the ship menu
  • Different chassis have positive or negative effects on your base ship stats (base stats here meaning when the chassis is naked, with no mounted hardpoint)
  • The following loadouts are available on non-standard chassis: Heavy interceptor, Light bomber, Tank corvette, Low tech destroyer, Heavy cruiser and Spinal cruiser
  • The heavy interceptor has 2 points of armor, giving a nice reduction of damage versus other interceptors, at the cost of some of its mobility
  • The light bomber loses its torpedo pod, but has mobility rivaling an interceptor with some more hardpoints
  • The tank corvette is very slow, but has more armor and the ability to launch heavy missiles (as opposed to light missiles on the default corvette)
  • The low tech destroyer loses its MK6 hardpoints but now has more MK4 hardpoints and more mobility
  • The heavy cruiser trades any hardpoint below or equal to MK5 for 7 MK7s… and a lot more mass
  • The spinal cruiser is the only loadout/chassis that can fit the new spinal canon. It has a very high amount of armor, no MK7 hardpoints, which make it bad against other capital ships at near range. It can compensate its lack of firepower with the spinal canon, either against other capital ships or land base’s infrastructure. It also has light missile pods to mount SSM batteries
  • AI ships can make use of the new loadout/chassis variants as well

Spinal Cruiser Canon

  • Added Spinal Cruiser’s long-range canon: fixed aiming, charging for 10s (with a red aiming sight laser), dealing massive 40K damage at up to a 150 Km range
  • The deadly projectile travels at 5 km/s
  • The spinal cruiser loses -80% mobility while charging
  • The aim laser deals no damage, and is only there to signal the battlefield (and especially the land base) that a devastating shot is incoming. It might also signal the firing direction to other capital ships to dodge the shot, however please note that like any other projectile, it takes time for the shot to travel, so the lead aim might offset from the target but still hit it
  • The cooldown is 30s, and the canon can get interrupted if it doesn’t have enough energy anymore to fire (requires about 75% energy capacity), or if it gets damaged, or if you turn power off/disable the weapon group

Land Base Assault

Land assault gameplay loop revamp: the primary objective is now (for attackers) to destroy the power plants. Their force-fields are powered by shield generators. Orbital canons are now a secondary target and not the primary target anymore. A part of the fleet now spawns in low orbit in land assault. Spinal cruisers AI tries to take down the land base from orbit. A part of the defender’s fleet tries to engage the attackers in low orbit to destroy their spinal cruisers. The idea is a competition between the two fleets to see which side will take down the spinal cruisers/carrier first (defenders) or the land base’s infrastructure (attackers) first.

Guiding System for Missiles/Torpedoes

  • Revamped guided weapons (missiles/torpedoes): added tracking cone, target gets lost if it goes outside tracking cone
  • Unactivated missiles (guided by the parent ship before the guiding system takes over) generate no smoking trail, until it starts thrusting
  • Reduced chaff duration to 8s (down from 10s)
  • Close-by chaffs now appear on HUD with a small icon
  • Smart Retargetting upgrade now takes its tracking cone angle into account to switch to a new target candidate
  • Added a notification message when Smart Retargetting gets activated (when a missile switches target)

New Weapons

  • (Heavy Interceptor) Added a rocket launcher (experimental, might need tweaks). Fixed unguided weapon, firing a burst of low-damage rockets. Hard to use against other interceptors but useful against heavier variants or ships with lower mobility
  • (Interceptor & Corvette) Added a decoy missile launcher. Deals no damage, but appears on the HUD as a torpedo, confusing enemy AMS laser systems. Has the same mobiltiy than a torpedo. Has a shorter life time (10s)
  • (Tank Corvette) Added a fixed heavy missile launcher on the corvette “shoulders”. The heavy missile has the same stats than on the destroyer’s launchers and are primarily aimed at heavier ships/small damage on capital ships
  • (Spinal Cruiser) Added SSM battery, an auto-aiming/firing battery that auto-aims and auto-fires light missiles at enemy interceptors

New Upgrades and Other Tweaks

  • Introduced a new category for ammo and renamed the categories to be: light (<=MK3), medium(MK4-MK5) and heavy(MK6+) ammo
  • Added a “medium ammo” upgrade for MK4/MK5 turrets that increases ammo capacity by +25%
  • Added a passive “stealth” upgrade for the interceptor: reduces energy emissions so that enemies do not detect a stealthy interceptor that is more than 2 Km away, provided that it doesn’t use its weapons/warp/boost/show any agressive behavior. Has a cooldown of 10s
  • Added “weapons durability” upgrade (increases weapons HP by +25%
  • Extra chaffs upgrade now has a +5% mass negative effect
  • Fixed repair crew turrets repair rate (due to a missing timer in the code it was x10 too fast); Some more nerf to the repair crew’s hardpoints repair reate (now halved)
  • Repair crew upgrade’s repair rate reduced to 25 HP/s (from 40 HP/s). It can only stack 2 times max (down from 3 max)
  • Heat dissipator upgrade can now be stacked 2 times max (up from 1 max)
  • Faster turret rotation upgrade now applies to MK5 turrets too (previously: only applied to MK4 turrets)
  • Changed gyro boost upgrade rank requirement to 3 (down from 5), making it available to new players sooner

Corvette and Other Ships

  • Added the ability to turn automatic firing on (+auto tracking) on corvette weapon groups. Manual groups are still exclusive (you can only select and fire one at a time) but while doing so, the groups previously set on automatic will track and fire at the same time
  • Added back Flaks to the corvette
  • Phalanx CIWS can now be mounted on the corvette
  • Due to adding support for autofiring groups, AMS laser can now be turned on passively and target missiles/torpedoes while the player focuses his attention on something else
  • Increased heat capacity for carrier to 3K (from 2K)
  • The corvette(/and carrier)'s repair field can now repair partially damaged hardpoints. Same improvement for hangars/docking bays

General Gameplay Changes

  • Revamped knockback upon projectile impact to be physics accurate (Note: the previous implementation was a hack). This should result in more natural knockback forces when getting hit by a massive projectile
  • Ship hull’s armor damage reduction is no longer applied to weapons on that ship (heavy cruisers have so much armor that interceptor’s miniguns could no longer damage them). A weapons durability upgrade has been added instead
  • Updates to automatic turrets tracking systems, to be more reliable and prioritizing certain ship classes over other ones (ex.: laser AMS will no longer try to fire at bombers if there are missiles/torpedoes in range)
  • Revamped rank and credits requirements for most weapons other than the default ones: the idea here is to have a more uniform distribution of new weapons to unlock at lower ranks on both major playstyles (small ships and capital ships)

General Balance Tweaks

  • Increased warp interruption threshold as damage % so that interceptor blasters cannot interrupt a cruiser entering warp
  • Increased minimum amount of time between battles to 3’ (from 2’)
  • Overheating now dissipate heat 25% slower than the normal heat dissipation rate (Note: this should incentivize players from not overheating by accident, versus letting heat dissipate purposedly)
  • Balance pass over max ammo count and energy cost vs dps efficiency for most weapons
  • Balance tweaks to small energy weapons (blasters and plasma cutter) to deal more energy damage
  • Halcyons and Railguns now have a lower ammo capacity and must be used more carefully
  • Increased firing rate of Phalanx CIWS by +50% (but reduced burst cooldown to compensate and maintain an equivalent DPS)
  • Reduced orbital canon’s MK10’s hit box size and total hit points, as it is now a secondary objective in the assault loop

HUD / UI / Controls

  • Revamped speed meter to be coherent across ships in terms of soft speed cap vs throttle (so that all ships have the same sensitivity in how much time it takes to reach their target speed)
  • Note: the speed meter has room for speeds above the cap, for cases such as exceeding the cap temporarily (boosting) or without flight assist
  • Added a checkbox to toggle head-tracking in third-person camera views
  • Fixed a bug when showing a weapon’s hitpoints HUD icon color status (the wrong red color was sometimes used as it’s being repaired)
  • Friendly fire warning is no longer raised for hitting a friendly base shield with a low damage weapon
  • Weapons MFD now shows maximum count for missiles/torpdoes and other specialized ammo (Note: this way you’ll know when being resupplied if you’re close to the max replenished or not)
  • Fixed capital ships not having HUD in third-person views when using the virtual-cursor control mode
  • Revamped coloring rules for weapons MFD and weapons aiming direction “dots” in the viewport: they now share the same coherent set of rules, which are: red = all weapons damaged or out of kinetic ammo ; orange = none of the weapons can currently fire due to some reason (overheating, under cooldown, charging…) ; normal color = at least one weapon in the group can fire
  • Added a gray HUD color theme (Note: this makes colored alerts and targets pop more. If you find the HUD overwhelming, we advice that you give this color theme a try)
  • Renamed bomber’s “shotgun” into “shredder”
  • Renamed “storage” upgrade category into “payload”
  • Tweaked base module’s icons for turrets/defenses to be smaller/appear at a lower range, to avoid cluttering complex bases with too many icons. Some of the more important base modules now have bigger icons too
  • Fixed a small bug which caused destroyed turret icons to appear in yellow instead of red while highlighting hardpoints status on a target ship
  • Fixed altitude meter not showing in the 100-200 Km range

Bug Fixes

  • Fixes/tweaks related to previously implemented features (ex.: gimbals not working anymore, weapons not auto-aiming anymore, ams laser range going through shields etc…)
  • Turrets no longer target nearby enemy ships under their detection range (ex.: stealth more or powered off)
  • Fix for a rare occurence of a Direct Input device’s driver incorrectly reporting the max amount of buttons, resulting in a client crash
  • Fixed a rare server freeze when two mines collide with each others
  • Fixed asteroids around space stations being destructible and causing negative credits from griefing from friendly fire
  • Fixed multiple issues related to beams/lasers, not properly hitting the closest actor, or not showing anymore after some time
  • Fixed a problem with alt-tabbing and throttle (via a HOTAS) going to 100% while the game is in the background
  • Fixed AI getting stuck at enemy base’s weapons max range at a bad orientation
  • Fixed a rare client crash due to extreme attractor forces in some particle effects
  • Fixed an exploit with the corvette’s repair beam that could get support objective points while using the repair beam on a ship at 100% hull
  • Fixed a visual glitch with all laser types, which made the laser beam rotate away from a dying target instead of stopping to fire instantly

Misc

  • Updated network visibility range to take into account a ship’s max firing range (Note: ships that were far away sometimes were not rendered on the client, despite their weapons being able to hit at a longer range)
  • Fixed shields transparency glitches when the shield is fading out (the shields was darkening the background)
  • Bombing AI corvettes that have targetted base modules will now fire their torpedoes at them more frequently than before
  • Capital ships AI now fire their missiles/torpedoes more frequently than before
  • Decreased audio muffle in dense atmospheres
  • Visual tweaks to missiles and torpedoes (they’re now bigger and their thrusters are visible from a higher range)
  • New audio effects for Halcyon, Plasma cutter and Railguns
  • Fixed plasma cutter projectile effect (white rectangles causing HDR to blow up). They now have their proper visual effect
  • Torpedoes now have a thruster effect
  • Reduced incoming transmission “typing” audio loop volume
4 Likes
#98

Hotfix 0.9.4.5 (Saturday 26th November 2022)

Bug fixes

  • Fixed land base objectives getting impossible to resolve due to some base modules falling outside the shield after surface remapping (the shield now moves or expands to fit all critical modules)
  • Fixed a bug with shields and force-fields not rendering anymore (at the sub bases) despite still being up on the server
  • Improved AI so that it goes for a final attack despite shields or weapons threat, when it reaches the last reinforcement wave;
  • Increased budget of small ships AI in battles (slight decrease in capships count);
  • Experimental improvement to minimum altitude on planets for AI bots, to avoid having them crash into the ground as often;
  • Fix for a rare server crash

Balance tweaks

  • Revamped battle reports scoring and bonus points calculation;
  • Support points no longer count towards objective points, but still provide a credits bonus (and still count in the total score of course)
  • Decreased Flak canons range to 5 Km (from 6 Km)
  • Slight increase of spread on Phalanx CIWS to make them less accurate at longer ranges
  • Decreased rocket launcher’s heat by -50% and increased max rockets capacity by +50%
  • Decreased by 10-20% the probability of static base defenses to spawn an AMS laser turret (bombers felt useless at doing objectives in early battle stages where there’s still too many defenses up)
2 Likes