Space Clouds

Incoming Changes to Fueled Energies

I spent a bit of time last week thinking about the role that fueled energies play in Star Sonata, and as a result, I decided to make some changes to a lot of the fueled energies.  I think fueled energies don’t work as a resource sink, and they don’t particularly work as interesting game play, but they do provide interesting flavor for several energies, so I want to keep a lot of the fuels, but make the relative bonus smaller and make the consumption rates slower so they aren’t as annoying.

In the previous iteration of the energy balance sheet, energies with simple fuels like Nuclear Waste got a 15% power bonus, while more difficult fuels like Promethium gave a 25% power bonus and Enriched Nuclear Waste gave a power bonus of 30%.  I wanted to reduce the difference in the strength between fueled and non-fueled energies, so I increased the baseline power of all non-fueled energies by 15%, while increasing the power of simple fuels from 15% to 20%, leaving Prom and ENukes where they are.  So the power progression will now go 1.15 -> 1.20 -> 1.25 -> 1.30 instead of 1.00 -> 1.15 -> 1.25 -> 1.30.

A large number of energies that were using fuel will no longer use fuel.  In the case of energies that were using simple fuels like Nukes, nothing about them will change except the lack of fuel.  The energies with their fuel requirement removed are:

  • Oversized, Gigantic, and Gargantuan Obsidian Ionizer.  Visibility now 0 for all.
  • Vazaha Cluster energies
  • Mzungu Clash, Clang, Burst, Whack, Slam, and Strike energies
  • Rhino Endurance, Primal Rhino Endurance
  • Zebra Life, Primal Zebra Life
  • Lion Heart, Primal Lion heart
  • Berserker Core, Prototype Berserker Core, Advanced Berserker Core
  • Multi Mythos Energizer
  • Oversized Yallow, Gargantuan Yallow
  • Kidd’s Energy Grid
  • Paxian Bloodstained Reserve and Bloodstone
  • Emerald’s Energy
  • Bear Strength, Primal Bear Strength
  • Sivar’s Purpose
  • Hermes and Mercury energies
  • Speed Demon Bank energies
  • Tiger Blood, Primal Tiger Blood
  • Lunarian Bank, Selenite Bank
  • Venusian Vitality, Mercurian Zeal, Solarian Vigor

In addition, I noticed that there were several fuel types giving large bonuses that weren’t really deserved.  The power bonus of energies generating Face Hugger’s Acid, Jelly’s Blood, Pyritic Radiation, and Eridium Fragments were reduced.  The power of the energy using Vis was slightly reduced.

Those energies that still use fuel have had their consumption rate drastically reduced to between 1 per 300 and 1 per 600 seconds depending on the fuel and energy tech level.

Dhatri Jivikadeva and Antu Vrkkasamvita will now consume 1 Aveksaka Plasma per 5 min instead of producing Nila Rakta.  Cara Hrday’ara and Ayudhin Balakrura will now consume 1 Alien Husk Fragments per 3 min instead of producing Nila Rakta.  Nila Rakta parasite health will be increased for those energies still generating it.

Several energies, including the Paxian Bloodstone energies, that were mistakenly categorized and thus overpowered have been brought closer to where they should be.

Lastly, I’ve added 8 new rare DG drop energies from tech 19 to 22 that use various new and weird things as fuel.

Beta client update 324.435

- 324.443 -
* Fix for a crash introduced in 324.435
- 324.435 –
* Assets preloading is no longer done upfront and instead is handled in background. The total loading time is similar but you can now log in right away instead of having to wait for the loading to complete. (this mean the game start as fast as it used to without texture preloading, but after a minute or two has the same performance has a preloaded client).
* Improved the background detection and rendering. It should be a lot less intrusive now, it no longer reduce the graphic quality and only impact the fps. Disabling background rendering will leave the last frame rendered as the image until the window is brought back to foreground.
* Modified the dds texture generation to reduce the size and improve the quality.
* Made glowmap rendering much sharper.
* Improved normal map rendering to get rid of weird graphic artifact on some ships when seen from specific angles.
* Client crash fix in the target ring rendering code.
* Support for locked “LOCKED” mission mechanic on test server.

Those changes are available in the beta client which can be downloaded here http://www.starsonata.com/beta-client-download/

Server/Client Patch 07.01.2018

- Patch has been delayed due to last minute issues. Expect an update in the coming days -
- Content Changes -
* Dark Fighter Defender nolonger drops from DG Dark Transports
+ Added a 1% drop chance of Gargantuan Goblets to DG Green Battleships
* Paxian Rescue Order (broken daily in Subspace) has been removed.
* Kraken spawn time reduced by approximately 1/3rd.
* Termites will now be hostile to almost everything
* Updated engineer class description to correctly show the aug tweak bonus.
* Added Fuchsia Panther skin.
* Fixed a typo in one of the emp notification messages
* Base Amplification Blueprint description now properly states the 3 day time requirement to activate from 7.
* New generic DG consumable drops; more extracted commodity crystals/crates, pirate crest crates, and tokens that count for Honorary Mention/Diploma exchange.

- Server Changes -
* Added options for enabling/disabling fighter and missile launching for bots.
* Added an option for equipping/unequipping all diffusers on a bot at once.
* Fixed a bug where DGs would sometimes set inappropriate lockouts on their boss spawners
* Made Astral Travel and Glory skills auto-remove themselves from players that had them and return skill points to them as they no longer have any use.
* Added support for stacking certain types of construction speed boosts
* Implemented async galaxy idle which should allow a galaxy to lag without lagging the whole universe. As a nice side effect, some functions become more responsive even in a lagging galaxy (docking, jumping, inventory management and instant use items).
* Fix for a bug that prevented the “free bvb slot” from working if your team had any drones in the system (drones were counted as a teamed base and took the place of the free slot).
* Bot would not launch fighters if it would leave them with less than 1k total energy. This was problematic on lower level bot or high regen energy with no bank. Changed to prevent launch if it would drop them lower than 10% energy up to at most 1k.
* Fix to support multiple beacons in a single galaxy. When jumping into a galaxy with multiple beacons, pick a beacon in the following priority order. In same squad and team > in same squad > in same team > any other drone. Drones whose owner or team hates you cannot be used.
* Comets drop re-enabled.

- Client Changes -
* Improved the client Preload to show a better estimation of the whole progress and added shader compilation to the preload (instead of moving fast then freezing for a long time at the end)
* Added ships meshes to preload data to reduce lag when entering sol for the first time.
* Improved memory limit management a bit more, this should make the client more resilient to out of memory errors.
* The client can now allocate up to 3.4gb memory up from the previous 1.6gb, on low settings it should not make any difference, but will allow the highest setting to keep everything in memory and also allow non dds textures to be used (It is strongly recommended you use DDS for normal play, only disable it if you are editing textures and want to test the changes quickly)
* Fixed a case where having an intel and another gpu while using the other gpu (nvidia/amd) still caused the intel to be detected and some restrictions added to the render. This resulted in the few users having both gpu losing a bit of performance.
* Fixed a crash in the optimized mesh generation.
* Improved data gathering for some crashes in the UI.

Beta client update 323.234

* Improved the client Preload to show a better estimation of the whole progress and added shader compilation to the preload (instead of moving fast then freezing for a long time at the end)
* Added ships meshes to preload data to reduce lag when entering sol for the first time.
* Improved memory limit management a bit more, this should make the client more resilient to out of memory errors.
* The client can now allocate up to 3.4gb memory up from the previous 1.6gb, on low settings it should not make any difference, but will allow the highest setting to keep everything in memory and also allow non dds textures to be used (It is strongly recommended you use DDS for normal play, only disable it if you are editing textures and want to test the changes quickly)
* Fixed a case where having an intel and another gpu while using the other gpu (nvidia/amd) still caused the intel to be detected and some restrictions added to the render. This resulted in the few users having both gpu losing a bit of performance.
* Fixed a crash in the optimized mesh generation.
* Improved data gathering for some crashes in the UI.

Those changes are available in the beta client which can be downloaded here

Weekly Dev Blog – 19th June

blog

Jeff

As part of the continuing work on Junkyard tweaks, Jeff has worked up a plan to deprecate Junkyard Tokens and make everything work based on credits. Part of the plan would open up the ability to sell any item to AI bases, even those that are currently listed as “too expensive to sell.”

Concerning low level bases in Wild Space, the team agreed that there should be no PvP ranges in Wild Space, but we do want to figure out a way for the UI to indicate this to players. There is no ETA on this change yet.

ClxS

ClxS has created code support for alternate currencies in AI bases. Content devs will be gradually transfering over to this system, which means in the long run you won’t have to fiddle around with turn-in missions in the future.

Pax

Work is ongoing on a new T22-23 content zone centered around Stella AI.

Urza

Introductory Kalthi ships will now be obtained via blueprint (roughly the same cost as before) so you don’t need to buy the actual ship at Paxian Stronghold.

Quality Assurance Improvements

Developer Blog

Hi everyone! I’m pretty excited about some improvements we have been making to our testing and quality assurance protocols. What this means for players is that we’ll have more frequent patches, better oversight on what goes live, and better balance testing of upcoming changes to the game.

These improvements have been made possible by several volunteers from the community. My colleague NCCIntrepid has taken the lead on Quality Assurance, assembling a team from the Press Corps to identify and fix bugs before they go live. His team has already covered the two most recent patches. Once a bug is discovered, they have worked out a rapid reporting system so that Developers and Contributors can resolve the issues and provide you with a smooth gameplay experience.

Some of our Press Corps volunteers have also been doing great work testing new content for balance before it’s finalized. I’d like to recognize the hard work of Joshua, Tornado, and Newman (Kanga) in particular.

If you would like to try your hand at testing or quality assurance, please drop me a line and we’ll go from there!

Ring Station

Server/Client Patch 06.14.2018

- Content Changes-
* A Kalthi Torpedo, the Kalthi Fist, has been added. It’s blueprint should drop from the same place other Kalthi blueprints drop.
* Sivar’s Augmenter: Rate of Fire reduced to 80% from 100%.
* Fixed the bonnet paxian mission, fixed exploration missions overall telling you to go to the wrong galaxy.
* Corrected credit cost on the mercurian zeal from (875m init and periodic to 87.5m init and periodic)
* Expanded list of stella ai names, 10 was too few.
* Made the Equipment skill instead of Station Management requirement work for Blueprint Packs correctly (blueprint packs now require Equipment, instead of Station Management)
* Made it so that a black box only vanishes if the base owner scoops it. If a team-mate scoops it, they will receive a copy
* Added a check to prevent items that prevent warp or decay on universe reset items from being transferred to the TSL
* Added better protections for AI only items relating to slaves

- Client Changes -
* improved the game client memory management capability.
** nearly all textures can now be unloaded from memory as needed if the memory reach critical levels. (this fix the client when not using dds textures among other things)
** added “/debug texreload” chatcommand to reload all textures, this combined with dds disabled, allow texture changes to be loaded without restarting the client (very useful if you are working on a skin either ship or ui).
** if texture preloading is enabled, then they wont be unloaded unless memory reach critical, if preload is not enabled, then textures are unloaded after not being used for 5 minutes (this time goes down as the memory reach closer to critical).
* Fixes store close dialog button.
* Fixed a bug where running the client in windowed mode caused the window to get a little big bigger every time
* Fixed engine mount on Earthforce Police Zebra skin.
* Fixed bug which would caused corrupted items to appear in tables, especially on the colony and base log windows
* Added /debug bgdetect to toggle the client background state detection (the code that lower framerate and reduce the render resolution when client is in not visible). This function is mostly here to simplify streaming / video recording since those hook directly the game render and can never be obscured.
** be warned that using this functionality constantly can have negative impact especially if your hardware is contested while the game is covered.
* Fixed owner not being displayed on base control tab
* Changed phoenix and glauco visuals

Server Patch 06.05.2018

This is a rather small patch but also include some behind the scene changes aimed at reducing the lag spikes on live.

* Fixed typo in Seer Wraith skill
* Renamed a few of the aug stat bonuses so they’re a bit clearer (e.g., Critical Percent -> Critical Hit Chance) or don’t use shortened words (e.g., Trans Power -> Transference Power).
* SivarHvar’kann now properly drops his unique loot.
* Fix for north and south base thruster directions being swapped.
* Added item stats to mc output
* Reduced the resists on Dungeon Qokuji’qi
* Increased shields on Reaver’s a little bit
* Added commas to the credit reward in mission descriptions

Developer Meeting – 1st May

Developer Blog

Hi everyone, here’s a report from press corps member DJ on this week’s meeting.

Jeff

*Patch Worked with Jey to replicate and fix the last client bug that was holding up the patch, so now he says there’s nothing stopping him and he’s planning for the patch on Wednesday.

*Fixed a bug that had broken lasers when nothing targeted or target out of range.

*Tested and fixed SOBID Attack Pattern targets

*Added Diseased Larvae with attack patterns to Mutara Gardens

*Changed the bonus thrust and turning on all Zebucarts from +100% to +50%

*Greatly buffed the rof mod on Earthforce Supply Ship from 0.07 to 0.50

*Changed loadout on Gatekeeper Supply Ship to have Nano Heavy Tracking laser so he can’t crit the player with rad just before he dies and cause confusing warp interdiction effect

*Add pop up error message when trying to jump through a blocked wormhole to make it more obvious to the player

*Moved the asteroid belt in Mutara Scrapyard so that none of the wreckage can ever happen to block the wormhole.  Removed all the wreckage that looks like scoopable debris or ships to be less confusing, just leaving asteroids and bulk trader parts.

*Gave Rat Carapace and a couple other low level AI shields some regen when they previously had zero regen.  AI will not initiate an attack unless they are at full shields, and it’s kind of weird when an AI fights another AI, loses a little shields, and then will just never again attack anything.

urza

*Noticed some Dampeners where not the same tech level as their counterparts and the decision was made to make corresponding base dampeners same tech level as each other. (Adamantiumized Dampeners+ will all be tech level 16, Laconia Dampeners+ will be tech level 14)

Faranight

*Drone meta: Anni defenders will not grem any longer. (Was not intended to) Drones in a BVB attack for defenders are to be used as a delay tactic, as in one drone is supposed to take place of one active player during the PvP of the fight. They may be a little stronger than we want them, but we will hold off on a full rebalance of permanent drones so that there’s time for proper testing.

*Working with the Testing team for the Base Construction vulnerability aura. Upon the testing results this will be decided about going live.

Additional Notes

*Forcefield Generator drone rework is done.

*Unforge balance completed.

*Golden Base resistances buffed to be between Lac kits and Dem kits of their respected tech levels

 

Ring Station

Server / Client Patch 05.10.2018

This is a small patch, mostly to fix issues that were added in the recent updates and some small quality of life fixes.

* Changed Deimos and Phobos Augmenters from rare to uncommon quality. (Deimos: 180% RoF -> 130% RoF, Phobos: +80% Damage -> +60% Damage)
* Added commas to /showsquaddamage
* Adjusted tech of the unsticky stable station diffusers, corrected 2 dampener bp pack descriptions to be more accurate. Deprecated the adonis, argonaut, and paxian unstable station diffusers.
* Fixed a bug that allowed the sun’s aura to be ignored with previously attached station (asteroid station)
* fix for first gal name being duplicated in oplist
* Fixed a vacuum scooping bug
* Fixed the construction related bug where periodics were not properly consumed. If you had a bugged build, it will still request a large amount to catch up (it did not actually consume periodics up to that point), but once caught up the periodic cost should be back to normal.
* Fixed a delay in the inventory refresh
* Improved map loading so that it should not lockup during loading anymore and refresh as new data is received