Release notes here.
There are actually several releases in one here, since we had a few small ones we just posted about on the forums rather than making a full announcement. But we're back to where we'll be doing an announcement for each release again.
This particular build... does a whole heck of a lot, good grief. The release notes are very long, so here are some highlights:
- Advanced Research Stations now give you a whole bunch of choices on which ship to gain for yourself without you having to spend hacking points every stinking time. This is super fun and gives you a lot more power.
- Advanced Research Stations can't merge ship lines anymore (people found that confusing), but before you get your pitchforks out -- some folks on Discord were inclined to head that direction...
- A whole new structure, Fleet Capacity Extenders, has been added. These let you double the ship cap of any strikecraft or frigate line in the fleet that hacks it. You get to choose the line you want to up the cap on, so it's way more powerful than the confusing ARS mechanic ever was. And these things are very plentiful. May your fleets be ever larger and prosper.
- Fleets themselves are now capped to just 5 lines across the board, and the custom fleets are both easier to use as well as being nerfed a bit.
- BUT now ALL of your fleets can have extra ships put into them to bring them up to 5 lines. That wasn't possible before, so you might be stuck on 1-3 lines forever on all but the custom fleets.
- The EXP mechanic now only works for mobile offensive fleets (this does include support fleets, but not citadels or battlestations or planetary fleets), and consequently it also only counts these types of fleets when calculating the penalty or bonus to EXP generation.
- Planetary fleets could get some serious exploity cheese happening with EXP leveling them up, so with that gone -- see above -- we now have the ability for you to spend science to upgrade a specific planet. It's powerful, but comes at a non-renewable-resource cost. We may have some more balance to do in this area (in fact that's all but guaranteed), but it's changed as conservatively as possible for now and should skew in your favor if anything.
- Minor factions can now be on their own teams with one another, if you want! So you can have the macrophage and nanocaust team up with one another versus you and the AI. Before the factions had to always hate everyone, ally to AI, or ally to the player. Now there's even more possibilities.
The number of balance improvements and UI improvements and bugfixes is just absurd, so here's a few highlights that may affect a lot of people in particular:
- Fix an exciting bug where AOE shots were doing way too much damage under certain specific conditions.
- Hovering over a save game in the Load menu will tell you how many times that save game has been loaded. So if you're stuck at a particularly hard spot then you'll get some feedback as to how hard it is.
- Instigators now have a permanent notification (like wave notifications).
- Zombification no longer works on Dyson ships, Dire Guardians and such things. It was kindof OP. But the old behaviour can be enabled as a Galaxy Setting.
- Different AI Difficulties now increase the mark level at different AIP amounts. As a result of this, different AIs can be at different mark levels. Yow. This should give a more proper challenge to the ultra-high-difficulty games.
- The Hunter and Warden fleets now get decloaking ships, in the hopes of preventing permanent scouting by cloaked units.
- If your fleet outnumbers the AI "enough" on a planet then all the Guard Posts will release their ships so the ships can run away. Again, yow.
- AIP Floor is now increased by 35% of AIP gain, up from 20%. So you can't cheese the SuperTerminal so much.
- Reduced minimum and maximum unit type counts in the more thematic Fleets (i.e the ones with mass Fusion Bombers). This is incredibly synergistic inherently, with far more units in general too.
- Drastically reduced the assist construction and repair rate of Engineers. It was possible for these to eventually end up assisting Factories to absurd amounts - actually a good bit more than the Factory.
- Income in general has been slashed from metal harvesters and economic command stations, as it was out of balance.
- Turrets are no longer quite so energy-hungry, as it was difficult to field all of them.
- Eyes can now be triggered by the number of fleets on a planet, not just the number of ships.
- Greatly reduced Transport Flagship priority as a target, so the AI will be way smarter about dealing with them.
- A whole bunch of balance and tuning relating to hacking.
There's just a really huge amount of stuff in this one, it's pretty nuts. There's a lot more we want to do, and a lot of discussions I have had to put on hold for the last two days so that I could get some work done instead of gathering info like I was for most of the prior two weeks. I'm hoping that people playing the game on the really high difficulty levels will find things a lot more interesting now, particularly with some avenues of cheese closed off but also with more strategic options opened up at all difficulty levels.
The release has been going well so far, and I think that the reviews that folks have been leaving for the game have been a big help for anyone passing by who's on the fence. If you've been playing the game and enjoying it, we'd greatly appreciate it if you'd drop by and leave your own thoughts, too.
More to come soon. Enjoy!
Problem With The Latest Build?
If you right-click the game in Steam and choose properties, then go to the Betas tab of the window that pops up, you'll see a variety of options. You can always choose most_recent_stable from that build to get what is essentially one-build-back. Or two builds back if the last build had a known problem, etc. Essentially it's a way to keep yourself off the very bleeding edge of updates, if you so desire.
The Usual Reminders
Quick reminder of our new Steam Developer Page. If you follow us there, you'll be notified about any game releases we do.
Also: Would you mind leaving a Steam review for some/any of our games? It doesn't have to be much more detailed than a thumbs up, but if you like a game we made and want more people to find it, that's how you make it happen. Reviews make a material difference, and like most indies, we could really use the support.