Tidalis:0.851 Beta Release

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Notes From The Producer: June 13, 2010

I'll keep it brief this time, and let the release notes speak for themselves. Lots of visual refinement in the HUD in particular, which touches pretty much all parts of the game. The other changes to things like the objective text and the before-level window also add some oft-requested enhancements and clarity/polish to the game.

Our submission to PAX 10 likely won't be until midday on Tuesday the 15th, since we're trying to pack in a last set of polish items on Monday the 14th, while also making sure we have enough bugtesting time that we don't break something important in the process of all our fixes.

--Christopher M. Park

New & Updated Levels

  • New cutscenes have been added for levels 33, 36, and 39.

New & Updated Art/Music/Sound

  • The visual quality of the HUD windows has been polished quite a bit.
  • The wave at the top of the title menu has been improved in animation quality.
  • The visual theme icons have all been updated to have rounded edges and thus fit properly on their containing buttons in the game.
  • Updated level markers on the adventure map.

Gameplay Additions

  • Added 11 new achievements.

Gameplay Updates

  • Added preliminary implementation of a variable-sensitivity for direction dragging based on recent mouse vectors.

New Level Editor Features

  • In the theme editor, it is now possible to set a global overall alpha on sprites.
    • Valid values are between 0 and 1000, with 0 being invisible and 1000 being completely visible.

Misc

  • Added "Reduce Visual Stimulation" toggle to settings menu for players who for whatever reason prefer less flashiness (this defaults to off, of course). Only a few effects are currently suppressed by this option.
  • Made settings, quit, and license key buttons visible on level folder selection and level selection windows for both play->levels and the level editor.
  • Viewing level listings in the play->levels menus no longer reloads the level list from disk each time.
  • Added choose-resolution-settings prompt to be the very first window shown when the program is run and these settings have not been chosen.
  • Made the Quit confirmation popup use the same remember-what-was-open-and-reopen-it-when-done logic as the settings menu. Made Quit button visible in pretty much every case when the title screen menu is visible.
  • License Key popup now uses same what-was-open memory as the Settings and Quit-Confirm windows, and is now visible in trial mode any time the title screen menu is showing (also made Quit visible in a few cases where it wasn't after the last fix).
  • Instead of saying "Special Win Objectives" and "Special Lose Objectives" on the right side of the screen, it now says "To Win" and "To Lose" in a much clearer fashion.
    • In the level editor, these are still labeled "Special Win Objectives" and "Special Lose Objectives".
    • In the game, it now shows even the "standard" win/loss conditions per mode here, to make it clear to the player exactly what the win and loss conditions are at any given time (before it was somewhat ambiguous to new players in some circumstances).
    • This information is now shown in a panel of its own in order to both highlight it, and to make it so that if there are excessive numbers of win/loss objectives on a small or narrow screen, those can still be seen via scrollbars.
    • The colors for the Win/Loss objectives display are now better.
  • The "level text" display that is sometimes in the upper left corner of the screen now uses tooltip-style graphics so as to be more attractive.
  • There is now a "Before Level Start" window that pops up on all non-custom/quick games. This popup allows players to read any special level instructions, examine the win/loss objectives, and even learn about (or refresh themselves on) special blocks and game modes that are used in the level.
    • When hitting Restart on these same levels, it doesn't make you click through this popup again.

Bugfixes

  • Fixed bug in smart drag where it was considering special blocks improperly.
  • Fixed bug causing (non-crashing) indexOutOfBounds exceptions.
  • Fixed bug preventing high-score-for-this-level from showing on the adventure map node tooltips.
  • Fixed bug where the fast foward buttons could get "stuck".
  • Fixed bug where the stats tracking for "Total Blocks Cleared" was being incorrectly set (generally to zero) when loading the game.
  • Fixed a bug that was causing parser errors on keyframing data with certain non-US versions of Windows.
    • Thanks to Ixiohm for reporting.
  • Previously, wall blocks would wiggle up and down with the other blocks when a column was getting dire. Fixed so that they no longer wiggle, since they are immobile.
  • Previously, sometimes the text in textboxes was slightly cut off on the left. Fixed.
  • Previously, sometimes the bottom of low-dropping letters (j, g, etc) was cut off in text. Fixed.
  • Fixed a number of visual bugs in the grid view control used in things such as the high scores list; substantially rewrote the scrolling and clipping aspects of this control to make better use of the built-in Unity capabilities.
  • Previously, there was a bug where the background sprites would not shake with the background when players lost or won. Fixed.
  • When new themes are loaded, that process is now smoother visually.
  • Previously, sometimes no-theme-set levels were randomly selecting hidden themes. Fixed.

Internal Programming Notes

Tidalis