Space Clouds

Upcoming Fighter Rework

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First and foremost, I want to acknowledge that I have taken the feedback that was given by the playerbase in response to the previous Developer Blog thread. I hear you loud and clear: the removal of power from Wild Bots, along with shifting that power into an Advanced Class Subskill that would lock you out of fighters if you picked it, in exchange for the reworked fighters is unacceptable to you. Thus, I have decided to do the following: Fighters will be released into the game in their reworked state, with no adjustments to Wild Bots. At a later date, when are ready to do a class rebalance, we will revisit this topic. For now, have fun with the new fighters next patch!

TL;DR:

  • Fighters will no longer need to be bought or built. They will instead be generated by Fighter Generators.
  • Fighters will always stay out for their entire duration, following the user through warp and transwarp.
  • Fighters will come in 3 different variants: 1 slot, 1 minute lifespan. 2 slot, 2 minute lifespan. 4 slot, 3 minute lifespan. (Numbers may change.)

With that out of the way, lean back and get ready for a nice and lengthy post about fighters!

Lice Fighters Destroying Infernal Darkness AI

Problems

Fighters have been in an odd spot, both in terms of balance as well as function. They have found their niche somewhere between missiles and drones, but they were neither as cheap and expendable as missiles, nor as big of an investment as drones. Especially with the (somewhat) recent changes to drones which made them break rather than disappear when destroyed, the position of fighters needed to be re-evaluated.

At the lower levels, fighters have very low energy costs for (in some cases) a substantial amount of damage output. On the other hand at the higher levels, many fighters were mostly useless, costing very little energy while doing negligible amounts of damage.

Fighters Blowing Up A Very Strong Test Target

Goals

While missiles will remain as high damage, high DPE consumable weaponry, fighters will fill the role of doing significant amounts of damage over a longer period of time with very high DPE. The drawback of course is that the longer a fighter stays deployed and active, the more likely it is to be destroyed. In order to offset the higher chance of them being destroyed, fighters need to become easier to replace. Just like Engineers no longer need to fear for their drones as much, no Fleet Commander should have to worry about their precious fighters.

Fighters Orbiting

Solutions

Fighters will no longer need to be bought or built. They will instead be generated by Fighter Generators. These Generators will be available through the same means that Fighters were. Blueprints that built Fighters will have their costs adjusted and build Fighter Generators instead, AI stations that sold fighters will sell Fighter Generators instead, etc. Generators will be relatively large in size, however the Fighters will be size 0, bound to the ship they were generated on and unsellable. Getting rid of unwanted fighters is easy, simply right click and “Destroy”.

(This also means that to make the transition phase from the old to the new system less inconvenient, you should move all your current fighters to the ship you want to use them on! In case you find yourself with misplaced Fighters shortly after the changes hit the live server, feel free to send in a Support Ticket or contact Bobbo directly. The changes we are implementing are significant and we’d like to reduce the inconvenience caused to a minimum.)

Fighters will no longer retreat as quickly as before. They will always stay out for their entire duration and no longer waste energy by docking prematurely. In fact, Fighters will now also be able to follow their user through warps and transwarps!

Fighters currently take a variable amount of slots, but with the rebalance, there will be 3 distinct categories.

  • 1 Slot: High damage over a short amount of time, they need to be constantly redeployed in order to deal with extended fights.
  • 2 Slot: Medium damage over a medium amount of time, they stay active for longer than 1 Slot Fighters and also have some interesting effects and/or more varied damage types.
  • 4 Slot: Very High damage over a long period of time. Out of all the Fighters, they are the most energy efficient, have relatively high upfront damage and are much more durable than 1 or 2 Slot Fighters.

Small Dachshund Light Fighter Generator and Dachshund Light Fighter

In addition, fighters now have a standard flight time based on the amount of slots they take.

  • 1 Slot Fighters last 1 minute.
  • 2 Slot Fighters last 2 minutes.
  • 4 Slot Fighters last 3 minutes.

This may be subject to change in the future, but these changes are meant to put fighters in a better place relative to the other deployables a player may use. These changes are currently on the test server, and I am ironing out issues as I find them. But fear not, you will be able to enjoy your new and improved fighter swarms on the live server with the upcoming patch!

Weekly Dev Blog – 28th December

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Jeff

Jeff has fixed more unexpected issues with the skill tree content. As it turns out, it is very difficult to cap AI if your prismatic conversion suddenly gets bonuses to its DPS from your Weaponry skill! It is also very difficult to heal your friends if Shield Transferences suddenly do damage. The bonus DPS from the Weaponry skill no longer applies to weapons doing 0 or negative DPS.

Berserkers should now receive the correct amount of bonus hullspace from Arsenal Expertise on the test server. There was also an issue of everyone being able to MF, even new players in their trusty zebucarts. Except fighters, who had troubles firing more than two weapons at once, causing some of them to do less DPS than intended.

Urza

Urza has brought up an issue with the prospecting system: Nodes containing basic resources, like silicon, are a bother and serve no purpose. They will be removed for the next universe.

Hober

Hober has brought up the feedback he has collected for his upcoming Fighter rebalance. Expect an additional and more detailed blog post coming soon!

Weekly Dev Blog – 21st December

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Jeff

Jeff’s been working on the new skill tree content ensuring nothing goes wrong, for example the hull space issues the beta testers have been reporting about how Capital ships have been recieving too much hull space from the skill changes. This is now fixed!

He has also been working on the e-mailing side of Star Sonata so now hopefully more filtering will occur between the legit e-mails to the spam and old issues with the previous e-mailing system will be a thing of the past.

Jey

Finally Jey has found the one of the large memory leaks and started fix it. While he was fixing he found another issue with visual grouping not removing themselves correctly resulting in a slow increase of undeleted visual groupings which would slow down some computers. A fix has been applied to this issue.

The main memory leak is thruster related as some aren’t removed correctly but hopfully have this fixed by the weekend.

Ryan

txFpeXHRyan is working on the new skill tree system making sure the interface is working correctly and fixing any issues the beta users are discovering.

In other developments bases and drones overall have recieved a semi-fix awhile ago that addresses the in-built energy charge mechanic and has effected some drones and bases in a big way that wasn’t expected, now the energy charge will be consistant after this next patch.

Pixel

ObJz2JDPixel’s been looking at the warp 4 regarding how resistant they’re to mining and have recieved a decrease in resistance to mining from 98% to 75%. This should help lower levels to complete the Paxius Warp Navigation 4 mission chain. Another change related to this is now the item dropped from these AI will no longer be a blueprint but the decaying commod as now concourses no longer use the commod as a “Neural Keysyncs” to gain access to.

Pixel has also finally has a look at the “Chid Adiz Mardana Var” drones and removed their ability to have infinite energy charge. This has been related to the changes regarding to the in-built energy charge in drones and bases being fixed.

sad_chidThis has been reduced from 5,000/s to 45/s in-built energy charge, means that it’s about 30 seconds until the drone fully banks out using a high end Engineer setup.

Hober

Hober will be working on removing the class locks from class overloaders, turning them into powerful unstable versions. He will also be looking into Unstable Overloaders as a whole, adjusting their failure rate and other attributes so that they are more desireable to use.

controlbotsHober is also working on putting control bots into a balance sheet! This will mean some underused and underpowered combat control bots will be seeing buffs. Expect some exciting changes to existing combat control bots like the Olympus control bots, and some targeted nerfs to multifiring combat control bots sustainability.

As a team, we have decided that Fighters being added into the game with Wild Bots as they are right now would end up making Fleet Commanders unacceptably strong. Therefore we have decided to nerf the offensive capabilities of Wild Bots at a base level.

What will happen is that your Wild Bots will do less damage unless you pick the Advanced Class Subskill (which we will be adding as an option, it will most likely be Wild Man) that gives you their damage back. However, making this decision will prevent you from using Fighters. We may include an alternative for fighters, which would lock you out of Wild Bots in exchange for more powerful fighters.

Weekly Dev Blog – 14th December

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Egrosphere

I am adding multiple types of giant stars to the universe generation instead of just red giants now. There will be O, B, A, F, G, K and M type giant stars now, which includes blue giants and yellow giants.
I have tried to make the stars have their sizes follow what they should be in real life (they will be scaled logrithmically in a consistent way through), and have put a number next to the star class (like in real life) between 0 and 9, with 0 being the hottest of the class and 9 the coolest.
Sun Names
I have also done a similar thing for main sequence stars; I plan to also do it for brown dwarfs, supergiant stars and hypergiant stars.
They will be scaled so what may be the largest star known (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UY_Scuti) would have a diameter 3092 distance across in the game, which is slightly larger than the largest size for a red giant star in the game now (3000 size).
Giant Suns

Pixel

Pixel wants to inform the community about an upcoming change to resource extractors. Extractors are being revamped so that you no longer need to equip multiple extractor types for each resource.  For example, if your base has 10 Metals slots you will now simply equip 10 of your highest tech extractor; you won’t need to also equip 10 of every other Metals extractor type.  We are increasing the extraction multipliers on all higher tech extractors to compensate.  For example, Kikale Mzungu Extractors will now carry an extraction multiplier of 5.5 instead of 2, to compensate for the lack of lower tech extractors.

In short, you will still get at least as much extraction as you always have, but you won’t need to juggle tons of lower tech extractors anymore.  We will also be adding some new high-tech extractors for various commodities, so look out for those!

Pixel will be watching the topic related to this blog for any thoughts about this change and try and answer any of your questions.

Side note warp beacons have been added to the north and south of earthforce layer for next universe!

Ryan

Ryan finished the class skill tree, so now we’re working on getting the new class skill system ready for live! We’ll have another blog post detailing the final version changes soon. He also added support for ctrl+A (select all) and ctrl+C (copy to clipboard) to all tables in the client ui. This should allow easy copying of inventory, ship stats, skill lists, and a whole lot more.

MicroCapacitor

  • Added Scorching for Ambro pulse, and Charring Fires for Anni Pulse/Primal Fury.
  • Changing base targeting code to allow bases prioritize bases while drones prioritize players/drones Healing wise atm. Will work on making offensive targeting code work the same.
  • Changing base code to shoot missile after 5 seconds of engaging a battle.

JeffL

Merged the new class skill code branch back into trunk and doing final testing in preparation for the next patch.

Christmas 2016

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Christmas is here, or near enough, with our Christmas event kicking off this Saturday. Astro-Ginch better watch out, as those pesky terrans will seek him out for his tweak generator and other goodies.

Christmas will run from the 10th December for a bit over three weeks, extended from what we said in the weekly blog to avoid ending on New Year’s Eve. The Christmas event will now end on the 2nd of January in the new year.

The event this year will feature the normal festivities, including the return of Astro-Santa, spreading his jolly cheer and giving all the (nice, and definitely not naughty) citizens of the universe their presents. Rumor has it that the Gingerbreads have formed an empire and are lurking in the depths of space.

Missions and related content can be found from the Lapland system, which’ll appear from a new wormhole in Sol when the event starts.

Astro-Santa Letter Competition

This years competition will take a bit of a change from previous years, it’ll run as normal but the letters submitted will appear in next year’s Christmas event. This year’s event will feature all the letters we’ve ever had, going back around the last 8 years. In addition, all the letters will use the egg carton system, grouped by year, to save you from some tedious clicking.

Standard rules for the competition apply:

  • You are allowed to make multiple submissions.
  • Deadline for submissions is Friday 23rd December, 00:00 EST (05:00 GMT). Submissions after this date will be ignored.
  • Submissions to be posted in the topic for this post.
  • If you want your letter to be counted as from your player name instead of your account name, include it.
    • Ideally, put your letter in a [quote][/quote] block and leave other comments outside to make it clear what you want in your letter.
  • Submissions may be excluded for reasons we see fit (such as plagiarism).

Once the deadline has elapsed, a maximum of five winners will be chosen, which’ll have their letters created for the following year. They’ll also recieve a unique permanent holoprojector, Frozen Snowflakes, and various Christmas items.

Frozen Snowflakes

Weekly Dev Blog – 7th December

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Christmas Event

Starting on the 10th of December and ending on the 31st of December, the Christmas event will begin! Lapland will be available in Sol featuring the Christmas-themed missions, as well as special Christmas loot found off of just about any AI, including DG AI!

Ryan

Ryan’s been working on the skill tree and finally fixed a UI bug that was driving him crazy, in other news he’s also fixed a exploit regarding to transwarps and most of all fixed the vacuum scoops… hopefully!

JeffL

Jeff has been working with the marketing side of Star Sonata to get a better understanding of what Star Sonata statistics are within the marketing realm.

Bobbo

Christmas has come early for Hober! Bobbo has finished work on the new Shield Remodulation Scanner, an item that will be available soon for Gunners!

Pixel

Pixel has been getting content ready for the big changes coming next full patch, adjusting and tweaking existing content so the big changes the skill tree bring and augmenter tweaking won’t have as much of an impact on existing content.

Hober Mallow

Hober has been working even more on fighters! Doing some final adjustments and communicating with the rest of the development team and players to ensure what’s happening to fighters and the way it’s being done is to a good quality.

Jey

Still working on the memory leak, getting closer to the heart of the issue and will victoriously defeat it with the Jey Debug Peashooter. Expect a micropatch sometime soon to fix some bugs that are currently lingering about, for example the hate system bug with some bosses.

Dark Steel

Dark Steel has been working on a lot of the Twisted Blueprints making them less annoying to build; Along with making some temporary drones more realistic in repair costs instead of almost free to repair.

Weekly Dev Blog – 30th November

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Pixel

Pixel has changed one of the in-built items of the Bule Eradicator from a squad transwarp device to the new Bule Wormhole Generator that will essentially allow the owner to deploy small warp beacons for squad or team members to transwarp to!

Bule Wormhole Generator

 

MicroCapacitor

-Ruin Base Gear: Shields will have +Damage% = to tech; Energies will have +Shield Regen% = to tech; Radars will have +Range% = tech/2;

-Beefing Ruin Base Weapons and a few other Base Weapons.

-Possible change to Escape Pods to make them have super-items and different visuals!

DarkSteel

Dark’s finished his work on YZ upgrades and platform/defender drones having the IC-cost options, as well as a new feature for these that I’m sure many players will be happy to see:

Construction Tab

Hober Mallow

I have finally finished my work on the new ships I plan on adding, which go from Tech 16 to Tech 21. We have, in increasing order, the Pax Latis Recta/Hybridized Latis Recta/Operative/Lyceum Exploration Cruiser/Blue Photon Corvette/Mastadon/Unt Faranji Wingship X/Kikale Mzungu Frigate X/Golagoay Vazaha Archetype X/Bule Abadi Spectre X/Hybridized Mastadon. These ships will be available from a variety of sources, mostly Subspace. The Mastadon will be available from The Serengeti and the ruin ships will be available from ruins.

Latis Recta

I’ve finished the Fighter rework, I’ll push them through for the next patch. Fighters are buffed, take a ton of electricity, and come from Generators. The old blueprints and missions that gave Fighters and Fighter Packs now give Generators. I’ve also added a Tech 20 Starter Capital Fighter Bay to Beta Antares, and a blueprint for the upgraded version of it to the DG loot table. In addition, I will not be changing the fighter bay slots. This means you will be able to have swarms of these fighters now.

Operative

I am not able to get the code support to make fighters stay out their entire duration and follow you through warps just yet, but rest assured I plan on getting this in very soon.

The Shiv’s, Tusks, Cestus and Talons have all been completed. After they are patched in, you will find them dropping in DG loot.

Bobbo is putting the finishing touches on the Gunner Analyzer, I’ve been feeding him a steady diet of crackers and celery until he gets it finished. It seems to be working.

My next major projects are: working with DarkSteel on Kalthi Depths balance, working with Enkelin on Station Management 21 and 22, working with SunDog60 on Subspace, working with Red on using the Balance Sheets for good and not evil (Tweaks will be our first victim), and working with JeffL on a single cool super item for every class and focus (12 in total).

That’s all from me!

Weekly Dev Blog – 23rd November

Weekly Dev Blog - 23rd November

Jeff

Fighters and Augmenter TweakingJeff has been working on fighters and the new Augmenter Tweak adjustments.

Pixel

Scrambled KalthiHas added the existing skins to the Hybridized Scutelogica Paxian ship and added a new Wraithful Egg skin to the Kalthi Warrior branch of ships, this skin was created by Curse!

He has also been fiddling with explosion effects! Here’s one of many examples that what could be possible in the near future:

Blue Ring Explosions

Hober

Hober has been talking about trying to get a recruitment type system thats for squads instead. For example when a player wants to find a squad that needs a Monkey class they can look in a list that would accept them into their squad. We felt this was a great idea but will have to be set aside currently as the push for prioritised things are much more needed.

He has also been balancing the fighters a lot lately and is slowly chugging through them, expect some nice improvements to most fighters!

Here’s some new content Hober has been working on (subject to changes):

Blue Photon Corvette and Operative
Mastadon

DarkSteel

Still hard at work balancing content for the latest Prawn changes and some adjustments to XYZ base gear requiring the new Industrial Commodity system.

crate14

MicroCapacitor

Went through most of the base gear and reduced the size of base gear and base augmenters!

Jey

Through the past 2 weeks been debugging the client to look for the client crash / memory leak that some players are experiencing. Jey thinks he’s narrowed it down to a certain section in the client but will still take a bit of time before this memory leak is fixed.

New Developer!

new_devWe have a new developer join the ranks! Not much can be said currently as this individual/machine is still fresh from the recruitment line. More information about this next weekly blog.

A rework of the Augmenter Tweaking skill

Currently

Augmenter Tweaking (AT) gives the player 4% increased effectiveness on his augs. This means that, at the max level of 25, augs are doubled in their stats. So if an aug gives +50% shield you’ll get +100% shield from this aug with AT 25.

Okay, so what is being changed?

What we will be doing is giving all the augmenters the values that they would have if they player had AT 25. What this means is that all stats on all augs will be doubled.

The new AT will increase the effectiveness of augmenters on your ship by 0.5% per level up to maximum of level 10. Players will be able to obtain the new AT skill just like the old one: through a chain of missions in The Acropolis.

Why are we making these changes?

We’ve come to realise that lower tech players are at an incredible disadvantage until they get their AT skill up to a reasonable level (often players would have far lower AT level than they would be able to acquire), especially because the AI in the early – mid levels do have AT. Missiles and Bots have been very popular in the early game and we feel that AT is partially responsible for this. Low tech augs already have low stat values, and the lack of AT makes it even worse. With this change, players will really feel an increase in their effectiveness after equipping an augmenter when they start playing the game.

What is happening to my current Augmenter Tweaking?

  • Players with Augmenter Tweaking 0 – 4 will have their skill reset back to level 0.

  • Players with Augmenter Tweaking 5 – 9 will have their skill lowered to level 1.

  • Players with Augmenter Tweaking 10 – 14 will have their skill lowered to level 2.

  • Players with Augmenter Tweaking 15 – 19 will have their skill lowered to level 3.

  • Players with Augmenter Tweaking 20 – 24 will have their skill lowered to level 4.

  • Players with Augmenter Tweaking 25 will have their skill lowered to level 5.

This will help players get through the missions without having to do content that is far lower than their current tech level (preventing largescale grinds).

Weekly Dev Blog – 16th November

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Enkelin

Headed the first weekly content meeting. These meetings will be held once a week and serve to make sure that all new content is being officially brought to the attention of the team and analyzed for balance issues. This should help improve the game’s quality assurance workflow.

Pixel

Pixel added some new unique ship graphics for the Corrupted Cyborg faction found in Kalthi Depths! This includes two new corrupted capital ships, as well as a corrupted support freighter. These ships will not be player obtainable, if you would like more info on them check them out on our official Discord server!

Corrupted Cyborgs

To go alongside this, Pixel’s also created 3 player-obtainable ships! The Rosbulk and Roscap are additions to the well known Roswell family of ships, as well as the Golden Man ship being a tech 19 addition to the Goldenboy ship family. Please keep in mind, all stats shown here are subject to change at any time before release!

Ros Ships

Golden Man