Shattered Haven:Pre-Beta Release Notes

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Shattered Haven:Beta Release Notes

Beta .800

(Released March 8, 2013)

  • Fixed a number of bugs with the roofs not lifting off properly, or lifting off incompletely, or lifting off when they should not. This was just a case of the roof lifting logic not keeping up with other changes that were made to the game in the last half year, but now we've cleaned that all up.
  • Fixed a bug where if you died in levels with cross-sublevel scripting checks, it could throw a bunch of errors mistakenly thinking one of the scripts was missing.
  • Added a new scripting command: STARTCUTSCENE
    • (args: SceneName) Starts the cutscene with the given filename, minus the extension (e.g., "Scene1" minus the quotes).
  • The music track for the first part of the tutorial (at the Williams house) has been changed.
  • Added a new preload-only scripting command: SKIPGAMESTARTSOUND
    • Don't play the game start sound when this level loads.
  • Fixed a minor bug where some levels were complaining about not being able to find the sound effect "StartLevel" when loading.
  • A fully-voiced cutscene is now complete for when you first start a new game.

Alpha .711

(Released March 7, 2013)

  • BGCombine now works with water/ravines and iron fences/gates and bridges.
    • This has also been used to update the backyard of the Williams house.
  • The "Forsaken Home" level has been updated to include proper weather and lighting throughout it.
  • Fixed an issue from the prior version where the sledge hammer carried image was an invalid size.
  • Level 061, Evening At The Office, has now been expanded to two sublevel screens in order to have room for proper ceilings and so forth.
  • The striking graphics of the whip have been updated.
  • Level 040, Jigsaw Grapple Maze, has been updated to have proper ceilings and so forth through it.
  • Level 055, Children's Mountain Maze, has been updated to have proper ceilings and other visual improvements.
  • Previously, when text or a menu popped up, you would still keep your momentum after the text or menu was closed, which definitely was a minor annoyance. Fixed.
  • Pressing escape while in the View Goals screen now closes that screen, to be consistent with the rest of the UI.
  • The inventory window now supports dropping items again (at last). Simply press the action button on the inventory item of your choice, and it gets dropped (and the on-screen instructions now note this).
    • This is hugely useful if you want to share items in co-op, where one player brings another player various items.
    • This also is needed for some puzzles late in the game where there is an unlit lantern and you want to bring that somewhere before lighting it with a match. Previously you had to bring the match to the lantern instead, which was annoying and actually could make you have to restart levels if you mistakenly picked up an unlit lantern.
    • This isn't really a new feature, but earlier in pre-alpha we implemented a new inventory system (the current one), and the drop item function never got re-implemented until now.
  • Explosions no longer strike objects that are hidden in other objects. So if you put a bomb next to a strongbox with more bombs in it, the strongbox will be destroyed and will reveal the other bombs inside it. If you bomb a wardrobe with a gray in it, the wardrobe is destroyed and the gray pops out at you rather than dying.
    • This is actually how it used to be, but when the explosions were upgraded a few months ago this changed.
  • Fixed a bug with a lot of explosive objects where they'd trigger themselves a second time, thus making them do twice as much damage as they were really suppposed to. This had some pretty dramatic effects that were not intended, mainly one-hit-killing players.
  • Majorly toned down the landmines. They now do 4 damage instead of 8 (really instead of 16 because of the above bug), and they also now leave a filled pit rather than an empty pit in their wake.
  • The keybindings currently associated with the left and right actions for each character are now shown directly in the HUD over those respective items.
  • The text for dialogue and signs and so forth now scrolls in like it does in Valley 2, and you can hold down the confirm button to make it scroll in faster if you like.
    • This makes the text feel more polished, as well as preventing issues where you accidentally click past it without being able to read it simply because of bumping the confirm button.
  • There is now a low-pitched sound effect that plays as text scrolls in, again like Valley 2.
  • Opening your various in-game menus (inventory, etc) now plays a little sound effect.
  • All eleven voiceover scenes are now complete, although they are not yet integrated into the game.

Alpha .710

(Released March 6, 2013)

  • Yet more levels visually updated.
  • The roof in level 026, rainy ruins, now lifts off when you approach the ruins rather than you having to get right up next to them. That felt really awkward before.
  • Added a new WallRocks3Dark background.
  • Fixed a bug from the last couple of days where monsters and items that were hidden in background objects would be briefly upside-down after you destroy the object they are in.
  • Grays that have never been able to pathfind toward you will no longer run at you using "simple tracking." That was something we tried recently, but it was messing with immersion and a few other thematic things.
  • The sound effect for when your blade is blocked by something it can't break has been improved.
  • When you strike a monster with a tool that can't hurt them (scythe, hammer, axe, etc), it previously was just swishing past the monster as if you missed, which was a minor bit confusing despite the tutorial text.
    • Now the blade blocked sound effect is played instead, and the monster pauses for a very small bit of time to show that they were hit but it was ineffective.
  • Added a note at the end of the intro text that points out the buttons for View Goals and View Encyclopedia.
  • The scythe, axe, one-tined pitchfork, sledge hammer, spears wall, and iron tacks have finally had their graphics updated from the horrible placeholder graphics to really nice looking final graphics.
  • The graphics for 36 different background tiles have now been finalized, bringing us very close to having all the background tiles finalized.
  • Six new types of machinery wall background tiles have been added to the game.
  • The graphics for Darrell have now been finalized.
  • Level 014, The Farm, no longer lets you get the scythe or the sledge hammer, since both of those can be carried back out to the overworld now. The front door is now unlocked if you try to open it without a key, and the sign at the front gate of the farm now jokingly tells you this.
  • The solution for "The Farm" has been completely reworked, and the level is now a lot harder (and more interesting). There are no longer any tacks or other weapons, but instead you have to lead grays onto land mines. This also solves the issue of players "farming" the farm for weapons to use in other levels. That's the last of the levels where this was possible up through Stantonsburg (there were only three to start with).

Alpha .709

(Released March 5, 2013)

  • Updated the resources files, which were missed in the last update (and thus the new organic grounds didn't blend right and Pierce still sounded like a girl).

Alpha .708

(Released March 5, 2013)

  • Level 026 fixed so that one of the greys wasn't stuck between walls.
  • Greatly refactored how the backdrops are stored internally, in preparation for them being able to use masked images coming up.
  • The game now supports organic backdrops, which greatly improves how dirt transitioning into grass looks, and so forth.
  • Updated the game so that Pierce no longer sounds like a girl when he gets hurt.
  • Added several new backdrops.
  • Lots of visual tweaks to lots of levels, to make them increasingly attractive with the new backdrop functionality, among other improvements.
  • Added Half-flowers sets so that places like the crazed meadow look more organic now.
  • Added half tall grass and tall grass dead so that places like the deadly garden left field look more organic now.
  • Fixed an issue that was recently causing the borders of roofs to be bright white rather than the more muted color they were supposed to be.
  • Fixed an oddity with building roofs where they would only partly be in place when there were two players (or a player plus the second-player NPC) both under them.
  • Fixed an issue where the roofs would partially reappear or lift off based on it calculating your grid position a bit incorrectly.
  • Fixed some issues with random-wandering enemies occasionally being able to get stuck (like sharks in particular).
  • Fixed issues with some enemies (most obviously sharks) getting stuck under ceilings.
  • The Green Haze weather has been improved to be animated and cloudy.
  • Thin water can now be deployed on top of bridges without shrinking away, meaning it can now actually hit grays on there. This makes levels like Venetian Buckets feel a lot better.
  • Fixed a bug from the last couple of weeks or so where the thin water puddles would not actually draw if they were placed via a bucket. This led to various confusion, including it seeming like some grays were stuck when really they were just avoiding stepping in your past water.

Alpha .707

(Released March 4, 2013)

  • Lots of minor level adjustments throughout the game.
  • Level 047 fixed so that player no longer starts inside of a wall.
  • Tutorial text no longer states that players can also be trapped by bear traps.
  • Level 091, the switch maze, has now been updated to have proper ceilings and so forth in there (and columns where walls and ceilings would not jointly fit).
  • Level 056 has gotten a visual upgrade to look more like the mirror maze that it is.
  • Added a new "FGADDIF2P" scripting command:
    • Add a new foreground tile on top of the specified background tile, but only if it's two-player mode currently.
  • Heavily updated level 056, mirror maze, to now have two screens (a new basement), and thus a more complex puzzle solution than it previously had. It's also creepier than it was before.
  • Added two powerful new scripting conditions:
    • TILECONTAINS - (args: TileNumber FgTileType) Script is only run if the current sublevel contains a tile of the specified type at the specified location.
    • TILEDOESNOTCONTAIN - (args: TileNumber FgTileType) Script is only run if the current sublevel does NOT contain a tile of the specified type at the specified location.
    • Among them many uses of this function is the ability to now have scripts trigger off of switches.
  • Heavily updated level 056 so that it uses some new scripting to make its puzzle even more interesting and unique.
  • Fixed a bug in recent versions where the flipped staircases were not actually drawing as flipped.
  • The final graphics for Lela are now in place.
  • The graphics for Mary have been tweaked slightly.
  • Fixed a very minor bug in Stantonsburg where Mary the player 2 NPC could get trapped on the wrong side of the barricade if you died and restarted in the overworld after... certain supernatural events happen in town.
  • Added two new scripting conditions:
    • EITHERPLAYERINVENTORYCONTAINS - (args: FgTileType) script is only run if either player currently has the specified type of item in their inventory
    • NEITHERPLAYERINVENTORYCONTAINS - (args: FgTileType) script is only run if neither player currently has the specified type of item in their inventory
  • In Stantonsburg, if you previously left the haunted warehouse without beating it, then you'd be unable to get back in and thus unable to progress because you wouldn't be able to get a second copy of the red key.
    • Now the game recognizes this state and simply leaves the door to the warehouse open.
    • Don't restart this every time it finishes, but rather only on the single frame after its conditions change from being false to true.
  • Added a new FG Object "Switch Multi-Toggle"
    • These switches never open secret passages, but instead are used for triggering miscellaneous other effects. Unlike regular switches, they can be toggled on and off.
  • Added a new script condition: TILESWITCHSTATE
    • (args: TileNumber On/Off) Script is only run if the multi-switch on the tile in question has a state matching the one specified.
  • Added a new "anytime" scripting command: BGCLEARSWITCHSTATE:
    • (args: TileNumber) - Clear a background tile's switch state.
  • Added a new "anytime" scripting command: BGSETRECT:
    • (args: TileNumber BgTileType Width Height) - Set the specified background tile to the specified type, plus also set a rectangle of tiles that start with the specified tile in the upper left.
  • Perpetual fire normally doesn't kill enemies because they avoid it, but now it kills enemies for the first 0.3 seconds after it appears.
  • Added a new scripting command: FGADDRECT:
    • (args: TileNumber FgTileType Width Height) - Add a foreground tile at the specified position, plus also set a rectangle of tiles that start with the specified tile in the upper left.
  • Added a new scripting command: FGREMOVERECT
    • (args: OrigTileNumber FgTileType Width Height) Remove all foreground tiles that started in the specified rectangle and are the specified type.
  • Completely redesigned the mechanics of level 015 Crazed Meadow. It was previously just a pretty simple tutorial on how to use the one-tined pitchforks, but that's already given earlier in the game now in a more interesting way. Also, it was letting you get huge supplies of pitchforks for bringing back to the overworld, which was never intended (this level was originally created before those mechanics, 4+ years ago).
    • The revised level uses a lot of new scripting mechanics to have a system of traps that you can trigger and un-trigger via switches.
  • When you die in the overworld or in a level that uses the overworld inventory, your overworld inventory now loses its consumables—iron tacks, sickles, etc, that are limited use. You don't lose things like color keys, papers, axes, etc.
  • Whenever you go into a level, as opposed to a tutorial section or an overworld section, it now pops up a big bar across the screen with the name of the level. As soon as you push a button it disappears.
    • This makes it vastly clearer when you are in a level and when you are not, without getting in your way much more.
  • Previously, the red health gems dropped off of enemies were restoring two health bars each. This was way too much; now they restore one.
  • Previously, there was a 30% chance of enemies dropping health. That has been reduced to 15%.
  • Added a new scripting condition: ZEROOFFGTYPE:
    • (args: FgTileType) - Script is only run if the current sublevel contains zero foreground objects of the specified type.
  • Level 013, canoe trip, now includes another mini-cutscene where Shadow Man appears to have an effect on the parents from a distance.
    • Also, you can no longer farm tacks from this level.
  • Fixed a minor visual bug where preload scripts were not run until the first sim frame and thus caused some blinking in the case of shifting between levels during preload, and some blinking in the case of weather being changed during sim. It was a split-second sort of thing, but it didn't look polished.

Alpha .706

(Released March 1, 2013)

  • Implemented an advanced new masking compositing methodology that lets us do things like organic waters and so forth with minimal prep and minimal loading from disk. This will also be what we use for the organic grounds.
  • Added a new and improved mask for the lava, so that it looks more distinct from water in terms of the harshness and general style of its edges.
  • After much ado, the lighting model for under roofs is now in place, having been upgraded to now match the general new lighting model.
  • Zombie mom has now had her graphics finalized.
  • The minor spirit, middle spirit, and shaitan now have their new graphics implemented, and can now be seen past the global diffusion that otherwise makes things pretty red.
  • The amount of red that the screen goes when the shaitan and so forth appear is now less.
  • Removed the bonus objectives from the tutorial, since that can't be serially retried anyhow.
  • Fixed an issue in level 018, The Causeway, where a couple of grays had migrated into some trees that you could not chop down.
  • Added natural-style light sources for things like cracks in cave ceilings, as used in level 028, Cave Graveyard.
  • Spears walls no longer hurt players who walk into them, as that was inconsistent with other traps and felt too fiddly in practice.
  • Bear traps no longer catch the player as well as enemies, because again this was inconsistent with other traps.
    • Also, bear traps now pull the enemies that stop on them directly into their center. This looks more sensible, but actually has some gameplay ramifications if you manage to lay these in the edge of water or something.
  • Monsters that step on a bear trap are now trapped upside down with their legs flailing for extra fun.

Alpha .705

(Released February 28, 2013)

  • Fixed a bug in the Canoe Trip level where not all of the grays were visible (some were in trees). This was new in the prior version.
  • Fixed an issue where the "follower NPC" could trigger portals and so forth, but it would just lead to a "level could not be loaded" error message.

Alpha .704

(Released February 28, 2013)

  • Fixed a bug where the changing the window display size or the vsync state would interact poorly with the compositing and lead to garbage on the screen.
  • Placed a hint paper near the portal that is roped in by trees in the south of the phoenix forest. It really wasn't very obvious that you'd need to go get the axe from the farm in the north to get through here, and this was too early in the game for the players to have internalized the rules to the point that they'd know what to look for.
  • Levels 013, 014, and 015 (all linked off of the Phoenix Forest) have had some updates:
    • All of them now have both characters in them even in solo play, and the characters can talk to each other.
    • Also, all of these now have a text popup where the two characters note that they can carry items back out of these levels, unlike the levels where you go through a portal.
  • The other four required levels from the phoenix forest all are portal-based, and when you go into the first of any of them there is now a popup that explains that your items didn't make it through the portal, but that you'll be able to get them back when you go back to the overworld.
  • A second map has been added for co-op mode in level 091 Switch Maze. This isn't strictly needed, but it helps to prevent confusion.
  • Updated the encyclopedia entry for the lantern to be more clear, and updated the Switch Maze level to have another hint sign near the end since a lot of people get tripped up on that one.
  • Fixed an issue with the center of pits sometimes having some artifacting.
  • The scenes with the squid and the kid's reactions to the quid have been completely redone. The squid was coming across like a benevolent deus ex machina, when in reality it is nothing of the sort.
  • Fixed a recent bug that was causing lockups on certain levels with animated weather, most notably rain in level 047.
  • Fixed a minor bug where sometimes FG objects were not being properly concealed in the background tile they were on.
  • Fixed a bug where MalePlayerOrNPC and FemalePlayerOrNPC would pop up their speech bubble, but would not actually let you talk to them.
  • Fixed it up so that the actual default adventure (and not one of our testing-only adventures) is now the only thing you can select when starting a new world unless you are in dev mode. This was definitely confusing.
  • The unlit torches now have a bit of blinking animation to them, to make them stand out more. This isn't intended to be a hidden object game, heh.
  • Fixed a bug where your ability to carry items out of a level was inconsistently handled with the detecting of whether or not you went through a portal.
    • Rather than trying to get very fiddly and circumstantial logic to work, each level now just has a flag of whether it uses the overworld inventory or not. Most do not, but levels 013, 014, and 015 have been set to. Other levels later in the game will need to be updated to have that value set properly.
  • When you first reach the overworld, there is now an encounter with shadow man that gives some creepy foreshadowing about him and his role with the portals. That helps make this part of the game seem less arbitrary in its mechanics (nothing is arbitrary, but now that is clearer earlier).
  • Fixed a confusing thing where the parents and the children shared their overworld inventory, so the parents would magically have the inventory of the kids as soon as control switched to the parents. Now the kids and parents have separate inventories, so this doesn't happen.
  • Previously, if you were standing on stairs and had the option of talking to an NPC or going up the stairs, it would make you talk instead of using the stairs. Now the talking is the lowest priority thing, to avoid several frustrating situations that could come up otherwise.
  • The intro to the game now includes some instructions on what the controls are (keyboard and gamepad and mouse, and for both players), as well as how to view and edit the controls, and how to talk to Lela for more information.
  • Early in the game when the game is first telling you about using your inventory since you have more than three items, it now also has a new set of instructions on what the literal keybindings are for those actions, as well as how to view and change those keybindings.

Alpha .703

(Released February 27, 2013)

  • Fixed issues where life gem clusters and magma spots were invisible.
  • Added the final graphics for the Mary character into the game (they were pathetically placeholder before).
  • Fixed a rather serious issue where the completion percentage for an overworld section was including non-scoring levels, and thus preventing further progress.
  • Fixed a bug where level 093, which is for backup only, was still being marked as a scoring level related to the first overworld section, and thus preventing further progress.
  • Fixed a bug where level 096 was not properly marked as a bonus level (as boss levels should be), and thus was preventing further progress in the first overworld section (which it was carrying a lingering link to for some reason).

Alpha .702

(Released February 26, 2013)

  • Fixed a bug where exceptions could be thrown in certain circumstances when a script ran and then pathfinding tried to run.
  • Fixed a really serious issue that was introduced yesterday where "preload scripts" would not run on their correct sublevels, and thus were really messing up certain parts of the tutorial in particular.
    • This was causing the end of the tutorial to be inescapable, and making the part where you go north of the house compound incoherent.
  • Fixed another issue where you could get past the grays at the end of the tutorial and get back into your house in an earlier state than it was supposed to be. Now it removes the exits so that you have no choice but to exit the tutorial, and later when you re-enter the same area it's actually a different level that is built to be the later "destroyed state" of the house.
  • Added a new SETPLAYERHASMOVED scripting condition.
  • Fixed it up so that preload scripts can now properly take you between sublevels, including doing so without an extra transition.
  • The prior two conditions are now used to make the transition from the kids to the adults at the end of the tutorial a lot smoother.
  • Hitting the F3 button now triggers a complete update of all of the composited backgrounds, just in case anything is off and the player needs to hurriedly fix it. Ideally this should never happen, but it's useful for testing mainly.

Alpha .701

(Released February 26, 2013)

  • Fixed the database description for Darrell, Mary, and Lela, which were woefully out of date and incorrect.
  • Added a database description for Pierce, who did not even have one!
  • Updated level 021, Mesmerizing Gauntlet, to have clearer instructions text for those who read the sign, and to also have a marked portal rather than one that only becomes visible after the grays appear. This allows you to plan your attack with the bombs better.
  • Level 073 has been improved.
  • Several of the mist weathers have been improved.
  • Added proper cloud cover into a number of levels.
  • Fixed up the storm clouds.
  • Added a new Dark Clouds form of weather.
  • Fixed an issue with spears walls where they would not trigger if the enemy was facing the wrong way despite the direction they were moving.
  • A new "snow spider" enemy has been added to the game.
  • A new "bones snow" object has been added to the game.
  • Fixed a lot of old references in the encyclopedia that were still referring to "health orbs." Those were an older interface element that equaled two health bars in the new interface.
  • Fixed a visual glitch where sometimes the feet of grays could be sticking out of roofs.
  • Really tightened up the collisions with the pits and deep water.
  • Added a new "sleeping darrell" foreground entity that is now used in the second screen of the game. Now it's clear that he's asleep, rather than him hilariously sleeping on his feet like he was previously doing (that was always temporary).
  • Fixed an issue with clocks being invisible in recent versions.
  • Fixed an issue with clocks going tick tock tock instead of tick tock tick tock.
  • Fixed a bug where going from a dark area to a completely-light area was not turning the lights back on.
  • Improved the basement of the house in the first level to have proper ceilings and such, and to have text between Lela and Pierce, as well as to use the darkness.
  • Fixed an issue that seemed to make scripts unreliably fire in some circumstances.

Shattered Haven