Valley 1:Beta Series 1 Release Notes

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Valley 1:Beta Series 2 Release Notes

Beta Series 1 Statistics

Beta Series 1 spanned from September 26 through November 7, and it was a busy period indeed! 640 distinct changes were made as part of 40 different releases over the course of 43 days. A player is thanked in at least 307 of those changes.

A full 100 players are thanked. Some big hitters:

  • Toll with 29 mentions
  • zebramatt - 27
  • Bayleyg - 21
  • jerith - 20
  • Bossman - 18
  • c4sc4- 15
  • GrimerX - 14
  • BobTheJanitor - 13
  • @B0FH -13
  • mrhanman - 12
  • FallingStar - 12

Overall, there were 13 major feature additions including:

  • EXP Containers
  • The Intro Mission
  • The "Last World" button
  • Stash Rooms
  • The Reference Window
  • Elemental Damage
  • Vortex Pylons

Other notables:

  • 11 new spell gems
  • 5 new enemies
  • 4 new scrolls
  • 5 new music tracks
  • 159 new room maps!

Beta 0.540 Whips, Bursts, And Insects

(Released November 7, 2011)

  • Fixed a typo in the splash-back text description.
    • Thanks to Underfot for reporting.
  • Added another cache of 90 wooden platforms near the entrance to the intro mission caves to help completionist players avoid trouble with running out and having to backtrack for more.
  • Altered the warp logic a fair bit so that it is now in general a lot less likely to spawn you in a location where you're completely boxed in.
    • Now it's way more likely to seed you at doors if you're warping into chunks, too.
  • The sound effects and visuals of the minor healing/mana drops are now different from those of the full related effects. This makes it a lot more clear when you're auto-potioning and thus probably in trouble, versus when you're just getting healed via minor stuff the enemies are dropping.
  • Added a new Insect Orb Scroll:
    • A globe of insects bursts out of you, dealing area damage to anything near you, including background entities. The power of each cluster of insects is low, but there are a huge number of often-overlapping clusters, making it a deceptively powerful scroll.
    • 5x can be crafted for one jade dust and one cedar logs.
  • Added a new Ice Burst Scroll:
    • Mid-power touch-range spell scroll. Useful for destroying or harvesting background entities like monster spawners, gem veins, trees, and other resource deposits. Great for dealing a fairly substantial bit of damage without using any mana.
    • 20x can be crafted via sapphire dust and granite.
  • Fixed an issue that could sometimes cause the dynamic skies to flicker out when they were being viewed from windows in interior rooms of certain heights.
  • Added a new Miasma Whip spellgem:
    • A crackling whip of miasma leaps forward and strikes the first enemy it touches, exploding and damaging other enemies it intersects on impact.
    • Can be crafted with dispersia + walnut + quartz.

Beta 0.539 In-Game Reference Window

(Released November 6, 2011)

  • Fixed a bug in the prior version that was causing the game to throw exceptions if you tried to double-jump before ever picking up a single item in the intro mission.
    • Thanks to GrimerX and uberfleas for reporting.
  • Previously it was still possible for the mono garbage collector to suicide itself during save operations if it had to resize a large buffer and the transient memory happened to be too low at the time.
    • At core, this is a bug in the way that unity 3d handles lack of heap space, and it's something that we've had to work around with all our games during memory-intensive operations (rather than just garbage collecting automatically any choosing to get on its day—which it could easily do—the engine instead throws a fatal error and dies if you use more than 800MB of heap space).
    • Preventative code has now been put in place to prevent these sorts of errors during buffer resizings, basically forcing a GC collection if there is more than 500MB of heap currently in use just to be on the safe side.
    • Thanks to Dizzard and TechSY730 for reporting this specific manifestation of the out of memory issue.
  • When warping into an intro mission surface chunk, it now tries to put you on the starting area of that chunk if at all possible, to prevent players from accidentally getting to bypass things like slimes based on warping.
    • Thanks to Magos Mechanicus for reporting.
  • Added a new paginated, infinitely-nestable reference window that can be used to have a handy in-game lookup for things like advice, crafting info, enemies, materials, unlocks by level, and so on. So far only the structure is there, but now the next step is to start filling in the various kinds of data.
  • The prior functionality of the adviser guardian stones has been completely stripped out, and they now simply give you the same sort of tips that any other guardian stone gives you in their normal dialogue.
    • However, a new "Advice and Tips" section has now been added to the Reference Info section of the escape menu—you can access this any time in the game. Hitting confirm while standing by an adviser guardian stone now pops up this specific section of the reference info.
    • The Advice And Tips section is broken out into seven subcategories of information, making it vastly easier for you to find out what you want to know without having to read _everything_ at any given time.
    • Additionally, a lot of tips have either been rewritten, added, or tweaked. The game has evolved a lot since beta started, and not all of the tips quite kept up.
  • A new "Materials Compendium" has been added to the Reference window. This new section includes the information for all of the materials in the game, and at what region level they become available, what regions to find them in, and all that other tooltip info.
    • Previously all of this info was available only in the tooltips in the crafting screen, but now you can look it up from anywhere in the game, which is something we think folks will find really handy.
    • Note that some of the rare commodities are saying that they don't become available until level 9999—those are simply not yet used in the game, although they will be prior to 1.0 of the game coming out.
  • Added a new Crafting Grimoire to the reference window. This has all of the crafting recipes broken out by the three main professions, and by raw gem or gem dust type.
    • This is going to be increasingly useful for players wanting to look up recipes as the number of recipes grows.
  • Added a new "Civilization Level Mechanics Unlocks" section to the reference window. This lists what new mechanics are unlocked at various civ levels. It's the same message you get upon actually reaching those civ levels, but archived for viewing at any time.

Beta 0.538 Intro Mission At Last

(Released November 5, 2011)

  • Fixed an issue with the visited percentages being shown incorrectly on surface chunks with settlements in them.
    • Thanks to JMAnderson for reporting.
  • Added a new Red/Yellow Slime enemy type for the intro mission.
  • The term "mana" has replaced "magic point" and "MP" in the game terminology.
    • Lots of players were using this term already, it's less wordy, it's more consistent, and it's breaking the fourth wall less.
  • Fixed a whole bunch of bugs related to underground seeding; all of them were subtle to the point of not even being visible to the player, but they sure wreaked havoc with the underground sections of the intro mission at first.
    • The bug that was most notable was that the "stone arch" type of passages down to underground dungeons, which are supposed to be the more common kind (as opposed to the little wood surface tunnels leading down) were NEVER being seeded. This was even causing some of the surface tunnels to not show up, too.
  • Previously, the intro mission doors and coffers and such were getting unusually crowded-around by other background clutter. Fixed.
  • Enemies no longer ever die by walking off the side of a chunk. Now they simply turn around instead.
    • This was something that would cause a lot of problems for multiplayer, and in the prior version we'd started making these changes but had not finished doing so, and so monsters were still dying but were granting drops for doing so!
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting.
  • Monsters—except for summoned monsters—no longer take damage when in acid water or lava.
    • This was another thing that was going to be a problem in multiplayer, and it was somewhat problematic even in solo.
    • Now monsters have a little blue bar that pops up when they are in water/lava, and it drains over 3 seconds in water, and over 0.5 seconds in lava.
    • When the bar is completely emptied, the monsters shrink away an dwarp to a random monster spawner (that isn't currently being suppressed).
    • This keeps the pachinko effect of monsters without needing them to die, which keeps things running smoother in general and doesn't cheat the player out of damage they've dealt to a monster, etc (since monsters in water previously didn't give any drops, but now they do since the only thing that can hurt them now is players or NPCs).
  • Enemies are now blocked by the slimes just the same as the players are, which lets slimes be used as a player-destructible barrier between them and the rest of the chunk; but since enemies don't attack slimes, unlike something like a crate, this makes it solely the player's option of when to "breach the seal," so to speak.
  • Greatly improved the pathing of pathfinding enemies such as giant shadow bats; they are now aware of impassible objects in their way, such as objects that have been seized, whereas before those were invisible to them.
  • All twenty-four of the hand-designed intro mission chunks are now fully completed, pending feedback and further testing.
    • Note that not remotely all of these are actually required to be visited in order to complete the intro mission. However, they do provide a limited exposure to the branching decision making that players will constantly face in the main part of the game, and so there are some little side branches and such.
  • Players are no longer given a starting cache of resources to craft with when starting a new world. They'll find enough through the intro mission to get them started, and then after that they can explore to get what they need.
  • The "starting checklist" stuff where the game would make you craft a spellgem and a spell scroll, and read the first 5 adviser tips, has been removed. The game no longer asks you to do anything of that sort when starting, you just have to get through the intro mission in whatever way you choose.
  • The elemental strengths/weaknesses in the pause menu are now a lot clearer. Rather than just showing +/-, they now say "X% Extra Weakness" or "X% Resistance" for each element in question.
    • Thanks to Toll for pointing out how unclear the other notation was.
  • If the WorldBackups folder is missing, the game will now attempt to create that folder itself rather than making you do it manually.
    • Thanks to Oz33 for reporting.
  • Lots more multiplayer progress, including getting the between-chunk transitions working properly when there are multiple clients connected to the server. This had previously been an area rife with MP-only bugs, but it's getting solid now.
  • _Substantially_ changed the math on how the player equipment attack powers are calculated. Hopefully this did not introduce any new bugs, but if something seems off, let us know.
    • The reason for this shift was that, previously, as equipment was appreciated or depreciated (based on being a higher tier than your baseline, or a lower tier), it was only altering the component of damage from the _spell_, and leaving the component from the player character unchanged.
    • This meant that, if you had a spell that did 1000 damage, and your character also did 1000 damage, that a +1 tier best-case copy of that spell would do 3000 damage (2000 + 1000), and a -1 tier worst-case copy of that spell would do 1001 damage (1 + 1000), while the same-tier average case would do 2000 damage (1000+1000).
    • The above was an okay range in some senses, but it meant that higher-tier spells were a bit of a ripoff, and worst-case lower-tier spells were retaining too much of their value. Note that a "worst-case" lower tier spell is something that you're still using 20 levels after you started getting a new tier of stuff, so that's an _enormous_ span of time.
    • The new math has the appreciation and depreciation getting added after the character and spell damage are added together. So, taking the example from above again: now if you have a spell that does 1000 damage, and your character also does 1000 damage, that a +1 tier best-case copy of that spell would do 4000 damage (1000 + 1000)*2, and a -1 tier worst-case copy of that spell would do 1 damage (1 being the minimum damage any spell can do), while the same-tier average case would still do 2000 damage.
    • The net effect of this change is to make higher-tier stuff more rewarding and lower-tier stuff completely useless after a certain (very long to get to) point.
    • Thanks to KDR_11k for pointing out this wasn't working quite properly before.
  • Previously, if a monster was not already in existence when a chunk was loaded from disk, it would not get the windstorm buff applied to it. Fixed.
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug from the last few versions where enemies would be unable to clamber over tiny dips in the ground if they were chasing you. This one was caused from some multiplayer changes behind the scenes, sorry about that!
  • The intro mission exterior areas now has a quiet piano track by Pablo that plays in the background instead of just the normal silence of outdoor areas.

Beta 0.537 Elemental Resistance

(Released November 3, 2011)

  • Awesome new Ocean track by Pablo is now played in ocean/shallows caves and interiors.
  • Previously, the health of pretty much all non-character entities was lowered substantially at levels 1-5. Now this mostly just applies to monsters, and not background objects, wood platforms, balls of light, etc.
  • Added a new Red Slime enemy, with a Red Slime Fire attack. It's something you'll run into in the intro mission; it's no threat whatsoever from a range, but it's something that will kill you quite fast if you get into fire touch range.
  • Fixed bug that would cause players to fall through the floor and back through the ceiling in certain rooms.
    • Thanks to Teal_Blue for reporting!
  • Coffers that are showing as visually empty now no longer show their minimap blips.
  • Added 22 new objects to the game, most of them ice-age themed, and most of them furniture.
  • Inherent elemental damage modifiers are now fully in effect, and different monsters have different inherent resistances to different elements of attacks. For instance, icicle leapers are practically immune to ice/water based attacks, while skelebots are all substantially weaker to air/lightning based attacks.
    • The various kinds of skelebots' health has been updated to compensate for their new weakness to air (yellow) attacks, but the other enemies have all gotten elemental strengths rather than weaknesses and thus their health is unaffected.
  • When enemies have elemental strengths or weaknesses, little up/down icons for each element are shown above their name while they are being fought.
    • These are ordered from left to right as the things that they are weakest to to strongest to. However, the actual numbers aren't shown.
    • Additionally, in the mouseover text for an enemy, you can now see the exact numbers for what their elemental strengths/weaknesses are.
  • Spells with an elemental damage component to them (which is pretty much all spells with damage) now show what element their damage is in their tooltip.
    • Generally speaking this should be pretty clear simply from the crafting components you used to make the spell in the first place (the gems all correspond each to an element), but this of course provides a needed and handy reference.
  • The fire, water, earth, and air shield spells are finally actually differentiated from one another. When you use each one of them, they now also confer a 25% reduction in damage from their respective element.
  • Also fixed the tooltips for the above shields to note their proper time of 1s rather than the 1.5s it was erroneously claiming.
    • Thanks to Toll for reporting.
  • Boss monsters now get randomly-added elemental strengths as part of their general stat allocations. Each random addition gives them an added 25% strength against one of the six elements. But don't worry, these additions are in place of their other stat increases, such as health, magical/physical attack power, casting speed, etc.
    • The net effect here is to make boss monsters more diverse. AND, if you're carrying around a diverse arsenal yourself, it actually makes most of them slightly weaker since that's now fewer stats going to things that would affect you no matter what your arsenal is. If a boss is 100% immune to water spells, you could always just not use ice cross, for instance, but if a monster has a bunch of extra health that's a problem no matter what spells you use.
  • There are now "opposing" relationships between the following elements:
    • Fire and water.
    • Earth and air.
    • Light and entropy.
    • This doesn't yet have any in-game effect, but later there will be some inverse relationships between the pairs of spells.
  • Fixed a bug where furniture was spawning in the "windows in the prior version of the game.
    • Thanks to Aeronic for reporting.
  • Given that the game already marks rooms as visited or not, it no longer stops marking rooms as stash rooms.
  • Fixed a bug in the stash room logic that was causing you to always get health potions included if you got magic potions.
  • Updated the stash room logic so that the percentages of what objects you find in them is now really different, and additionally so that now about half the time for things like potions and wood platforms you find coffers instead of the actual raw objects.
  • Added new water espers to the game. These now show up mixed in with the lighting espers in most places except for the desert.
  • Lots of multiplayer progress. We had it running with two clients and the server today for the first time since March (it's all been single client and a server tests until today). Still tons of kinks to iron out, but the most recent networking model is taking shape nicely.

Beta 0.536 Snake In The Window

(Released November 1st, 2011)

  • Put in a fix that should make it so that your speed can never be reduced so much that it goes negative.
    • Thanks to Professor Paul1290 for reporting.
  • Fixed a crash bug when players tried to open an inventory that was completely empty.
    • Thanks to jerith.
  • Made it so that even when a player's inventory is completely empty, it still shows their ability bar (just with nothing in it).
  • Light snakes now move about 2/3 as fast, accelerate about 10x as fast, last 2x as long, and reveal the minimap as they move.
    • Thanks to LCinn for suggesting.
  • Light snakes and summoned rhinos now show up as blips on the minimap so that you can keep track of their progress.
  • Put in some changes to hopefully fix "undead" monsters.
    • This fix should hopefully work, but it's important to note that since we could not yet duplicate it or get a save from anyone that demonstrated this, we're shooting mildly blindly with it.
    • Thanks to Smee and Grey-fox-13 for reporting.
  • Updated coffers that give out more than one of a consumable item to refresh you to the amount of item that they contain, rather than only giving you any items if you are holding none of the item.
  • Added in a new kind of ice age building that is only used during the intro mission.
  • Updated the map editor to have better contrast and to use single characters to differentiate things that would otherwise require color variances.
  • Added another boss room
    • Thanks again zebramatt!
  • Fixed the issue with "undead" monsters blocking your way in the last couple of versions.
    • Thanks to Smiling Spectre, Smee, Dizzard, Underfot, Grey-fox-13, and jbergmark for reporting.
  • Added a new Enable Dynamic Skies Regardless Of Pixel FillRate option in the graphics tab of the settings window.
    • Normally dynamic skies are disabled on any graphics card that doesn't support at least a 3,000 megapixel per second fill rate. This mostly means older graphics cards, or most integrated graphics cards.
    • The reason is that on a card with a pixel fill rate that is that low, it's highly unlikely to be able to render the game at the desired 60fps with dynamic skies on—and in the case of some cards, there may be hidden limitations that actually cause the sky to draw as pure pink.
    • This override option is provided to allow players to turn on the dynamic skies if they don't mind a lower framerate and their card can actually render more than just a pink background.
    • Thanks to GabrielKronos for suggesting.
  • A lot of interior rooms now have "windows" along the side of them to show the sky when you are aboveground. When you're underground (in a building's basement, or in a building that is entirely underground), those same room maps no longer show open sky. That's actually now true of boss rooms that feature open sky, as well—those openings close up when the room template is used underground.
    • The general idea here is to make aboveground buildings not feel so enclosed, and getting to see some of the sky is certainly a big help in that regard.
  • Loads and loads of internal progress have been made on both multiplayer and the intro mission.

Beta 0.535 Audio Epitaph

(Released October 28, 2011)

  • Graphics cards with a pixel fill rate of less than 3000 megapixels/second are no longer allowed to use dynamic skies; on most of them, the performance would be too horrible in general to actually play with, and in some it actually just goes directly to a pink background instead of even drawing the sky.
    • Thanks to JMAnderson for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where death-of-lieutenant and death-of-overlord events were multiplying morale and not being checked for intermediate arithmetic-overflow prevention.
    • Thanks to tbogue for the report.
  • Added two boss rooms, four atriums, a generic small room. Also updated an overlord room, and three hallways.
    • Thanks to Dizzard, zebramatt, @B0FH, and c4sc4 for these additions.
  • Fixed a bug that was causing Old Sheds and Rural Storage Buildings to not spawn any furniture.
  • Put in some defensive code that prevents mildly-corrupt worlds from being un-loadable. Now it auto-heals those worlds in yet some more new cases.
    • Thanks to Hyfrydle for reporting.
  • Added a new prompt when loading a world that asks if you'd like to back up the world before loading it.
    • This should be really helpful during beta in particular, but if you don't like getting prompted and want the prompt off, there's also a settings option that lets you disable the prompt.
    • Also added a new "Backup World" option in the main menu that lets you manually back up any world that you like, at any time.
    • The backups are automatically put into a new WorldBackups folder in the game folder. The option to put the backups somewhere else on the computer is something we'd look at later, but for now the main thing is just making a copy at all.
    • Also, at the moment it only keeps the last 10 backups (period, not per-world). If we need more flexibility than that we can add it, but I suspect that for now this will get the job done.
  • Added in new "coffers" to the game. These are basically like treasure chests, but they give out infinite copies of whatever they contain.
    • If you aren't holding any of that item that the coffer contains, then it will give you another one.
    • As implemented, this actually is something that can be "exploited" to gain free copies of the item in question simply by dropping your copy of the item onto the ground, then getting another copy, then repeating. However, the reason that isn't an issue is that the stuff coffers will be giving out is limited to stuff that is trivially easy to find in the first place, and/or that you have no earthly reason to want to dupe (having multiple copies of Fire Touch 1 won't help anything, for instance).
    • These coffers will pretty much be seen in the intro mission, but not anywhere else in the game. They are mostly just a way of making it so that rather than having any starting inventory at all as a new player, you instead will find what you need as you explore along the issue mission. That, plus if you accidentally drop something critical, or you're playing multiplayer, all the players have a way of easily getting copies of what they need to get past the intro mission and into the first settlement.
  • Converted the very unpopular ice age vent pipes into icicle graphics instead.
  • The first three sections of the intro mission are now internally complete and will function well enough to get new players up to speed with a few aspects of the game. Lots more still needed, but it's the start of a proper intro at least.
  • Put in a ton of really radical changes to the sound system, making it use more the standard unity 3d sound methods to get lower-latency playback, lower heap usage, and to avoid some unity bugs.

Beta 0.534 Settlements Ahoy

(Released October 26, 2011)

  • The cooldown of healing and MP restoration scrolls/potions are no longer affected by the magical casting speed of the character.
    • Thanks to Toll for reporting.
  • Made the game substantially more aggressive in how it decides to seed settlements—this makes it a lot less random as to when you'll encounter your second settlement, for instance.
    • Previously there were some games (such as Hyfrydle's), where the second settlement might not be encountered until level 60 or 70, while others would have the second settlement appear around level 20 or lower. That's just way too big a spread for something this important.
    • Now, once your civ level reaches 10, the chance of a second settlement goes up astronomically, and then it also goes up astronomically for another settlement every 30 levels (starting at level 30, then 60, 90, etc).
    • It's still quite possible to get more settlements sooner, so your third settlement might happen to appear when you're only level 14 for instance, but now there's a cap on how FEW settlements you can get at minimum.
    • Thanks to Hyfrydle and a number of other players for raising the issue periodically.
  • Put in a check so that if the GPU doesn't support vertex programs that it won't try to use Unisky (which was resulting in a pink sky).
    • Thanks to JMAnderson for reporting.
  • Put in some logic so that the caps of the GPU get dumped to the output.log file in the AVWW_Data subfolder. Thus if someone is still getting a pink sky or similar, they can send us those caps and we can make the adjustment appropriately so that it automatically switches to static skies on their type of GPU.
  • Made the water and sky colors in the map editor a lot more distinct from one another.
  • Put in some defensive code for region surface dungeon generation to make sure that if there is supposed to be an evil outpost, overlord keep, rare commodity tower, or similar it definitely will always add them no matter what, even if it has to make the region larger than it would normally be to fit in the extra nodes.
  • Fixed another issue with rooms sometimes not seeding an overflow vent when they should have.
    • This won't fix existing rooms, but any newly generated rooms won't have this issue.
    • Thanks to JMAnderson for reporting.
  • Substantially changed the way that inward and side-linking doors are allocated for links to other rooms. It now allocates all the non-destroyed rooms to doors first, and then comes back and allocates the destroyed doors.
    • This means that it's vastly more likely that if an overflow vent can't be placed for some reason, that it's linking to a room that's destroyed anyhow, rather than a room that you actually would want/need to go to.
  • Made a lot of progress on getting the intro mission up and going. When you start a new world it now spawns you in the first chunk of what will be the intro mission, although even that chunk isn't fully complete yet. However, this represents a lot of strides forward in terms of the map editor, the generation algorithms, the seeding algorithms, and so on—the framework for the mission is pretty much all there now, which is really cool.

Beta 0.533 Rockslide and Meteor Shower

(Released October 26, 2011)

  • Added in 4 new single-floor staircases down, 8 new staircases up, 5 new up/down huge solitary staircases, and 7 new single-floor up/down solitary staircases room templates by Chris.
  • Shrank some of the ladders-based staircases from recent versions so that there isn't quite so much annoying jumping up and down with them.
  • Fixed an issue from the prior version that was causing "zombie" enemies at times.
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting.
  • Added two new spell gems: rockslide and meteor shower.
    • These are like launch rock and launch meteor, except that they fire four projectiles up in a fixed arc rather than firing one projectile at a player-set angle. These are much more friendly to keyboard play, and are extremely handy for things like masses of enemies, too.
    • These projectiles are half as powerful and the spell costs twice as much to use, but since you get four times as many of them per use with no extra cooldown cost, you wind up saving in cooldown and having equal damage that is done to a wider area.
  • Put in a fix for a bug in the prior version that was causing keyboard input to be flaky.
    • Thanks to tbogue and Toll for reporting.
  • Fixed a longstanding issue with building interiors in particular where the ceiling wasn't working quite right and you could sometimes see sky behind it, or the explosions from your shots.
  • Fixed an issue in recent versions with one of the destroyed room templates drawing glitchily.
    • This won't fix existing rooms that were generated, but it will prevent any new ones from happening.
    • Thanks to JMAnderson for reporting.

Beta 0.532 Bugfix Collection

(Released October 26, 2011)

  • Home libraries and home studies are now shown as green nodes on the dungeon map, rather than yellow, to aid in clarity with differentiating them from stashes.
    • Thanks to zebramatt, BobTheJanitor, and Smiling Spectre for suggesting.
  • Reduced the number of sounds that can be played each frame down from 4 back to 2 (prior to 0.531 the number was 1). Hopefully this will solve the crashing problem experienced by a couple of players.
  • Monsters and monster spawners no longer have any chance of taking ambient heat or cold damage; it simply didn't make sense or add anything to the game when a monster would be caught in an area that would kill them automatically like that.
    • Note that of course the water/lava still kills most non-boss monsters, as that's pretty important for having monsters not get stuck in pits but rather dying and new monsters spawning to take their place, etc.
    • Thanks to FallingStar for reporting.
  • Put in some code checks to prevent entities from ever being killed multiple times at once (if multiple things would kill them in the exact same frame, previously that could sometimes happen).
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting.
  • Wandering characters now have personality traits, the same as regular NPCs do.
  • Fixed several issues with the glyph transplants, where the wanderers would not become full NPCs like they should.
    • Now, not only do they become full NPCs, but they also take over the place of work and residence, etc, of the character they swapped with.
    • Thanks to zebramatt for reporting.

Beta 0.531 Glyph Transplants and Abandoned Settlements

(Released October 25, 2011)

  • Fixed a number of issues in the prior version with the lighting model not working properly in various circumstances.
    • Thanks to GrimerX, Bossman, and leb0fh for reporting.
  • Added in a new sound effect from Pablo for when you gain EXP from an EXP container.
  • Made some adjustments to how many sounds can be played back at once in a single frame, to make it so that things like boss explosions and such won't completely cause things like the level up sound effect from playing as often.
  • A bunch of new rooms added today, including 3 Hallways, 3 Boss Rooms, and 2 atriums.
    • Thanks to zebramatt, Dizzard, Aeronic, and c4sc4 for these.
    • @B0FH also updated his prior map room to include some of the new features.
  • Added in some colorization to the various messages of the message log, making it easier to tell them apart from one another.
  • Added a new Glyph Transplant Scroll.
    • Allows you to transfer your glyph to a character you are currently talking to, letting you take over control of the new character in place of your current one.
    • Ten of them can be crafted for one dispersia and one magma, or you can find them in stashes sometimes.
  • The parenthetical magical attack power from the spell alone is no longer shown in tooltips unless you have the F3 debug menu on.
    • It was needlessly confusing for the general case, but if someone really wants to know which part of the damage is coming from the spell itself, now that can still be found out.
    • Thanks to GrimerX for suggesting.
  • Monsters that are immune to knockback now show "immune to knockback" in their info display when mousing over them while the game is paused.
  • Added a new Splash Back spell gem.
    • An shower of water bursts out of you, doing very little damage bit knocking susceptible enemies back a great distance.
    • This can be crafted with sapphire, walnut, and quartz rock.
    • Thanks to martyn_van_buren for suggesting.
  • The cooldown of creeping death has been reduced from 8 seconds to 4 seconds.
  • Abandoned settlements are no longer dead ends!
    • Previously, if all the characters in a settlement died, you had no way of ever getting any more settlers into it.
    • Now when there are no characters in a settlement, and all the monsters have been cleared out, visiting one of the guardian stones in the settlement will have them use their power to call a wandering NPC to the settlement to live.
    • With that little starting point, you can build back up to a settlement of any size by the normal recruitment methods.

Beta 0.530 EXP Containers and Map Editor Extensions

(Released October 24, 2011)

  • Fixed an issue with the prior version where air pockets were forming at the bottom of water caves, etc.
    • We'd disabled one code method temporarily while testing another water issue, and forgot to re-enable it, which is what caused this.
    • Thanks to Dizzard, Baleyg, and Armanant for reporting.
  • Made it so that the Illari healing, which as of the prior version now uses a cooldown on your character instead of the ilari stone, now has its own cooldown type that doesn't affect your ability to heal yourself or similar.
    • Thanks to Toll for suggesting.
  • Fixed a bug in the prior version that was causing overlords and lieutenantas to give almost no EXP.
    • Thanks to zebramatt, Kronic, Armanant, and Rekka for reporting.
  • Really revamped how the positive and negative speed multipliers are applied to players, so that now ice bats won't reduce you speed all the way to 0 with one hit, but now they will properly slow you down when you get hit by them while dashing.
    • Thanks to Baleyg, Dizzard, wyvern83, Kronic, and zebramatt for reporting the oddities in the prior version.
  • Put in some logic to help keep flying enemies from trying to fly out of the chunk and getting stuck at the top of the chunk.
  • Fixed an issue with background grass sometimes showing up incorrectly in front of buildings, etc.
    • Thanks to leb0fh for reporting.
  • Seeded in a bunch of new furniture, especially in the contemporary and ice age areas. This includes the first appliances and the first wall decorations. Many rooms that already had furniture now have a greater variety, and a lot of the rooms that had none will now have some. Biggest furniture upgrade to date!
  • Six new staircases of various types added in.
    • Thanks to zebramatt for those additions.
  • Fixed bug where arithmetic overflow was possible in morale calculation when there was a lot of positive-multiplier world events in recent history. Now the intermediate result cannot exceed 10,000 (the cap of the final value is 100).
    • Thanks to Armanant for the report.
  • Added in support for the map editor to place water/lava tiles.
    • Note that water OR lava will be used, based on the tileset of the building/region in question. So it will vary which is which.
    • Thanks to leb0fh for suggesting.
  • Made it so that there is now more variance in the procedurally-generated rooms in that the individual parts of them can now be flipped on the X axis as they are being put together; similarly to how the template-based full rooms already could be done.
  • Added in some new template components for the procedurally-generated rooms, and made sure that all of the existing components will be used to their fullest with the revised rules on minimum passage height (3 tiles instead of 2, for instance) from a few weeks back.
  • Added the ability to put "open sky" tiles in the map editor.
    • This should be used sparingly in most rooms, and bear in mind that the edge of the background wall won't look very good against the open sky. Best approach is to put walls around the open sky except at one point where you have ladders placed under part of the open sky to allow the player to get into that section (if you want them to be able to get into that section.
  • Added in support for BGWallBlockedToBosses and SkyBlockedToBosses.
    • Thanks to leb0fh, zebramatt, and Dizzard for suggesting.
  • Added four new boss rooms by Chris, experimenting with some of the new map editor features.
  • Updated a huge number of the boss rooms to use the new BGWallBlockedToBosses, making it so that you don't get things like a boss trapped in a tiny saferoom, etc.
  • Also updated a number of the original boss rooms that Chris had done that were not having enough solid floorspace for enemies to always spawn. Now there is always at least an 8-tile-wide section of floor (with 8 tiles high as well) in every boss room type.
  • Fixed several issues with how the top of the chunk in outdoor areas was being treated. This had then been causing some strangeness with enemy shots warping around oddly when there were amoebas sandwiched right at the top of the exterior available area.
    • Thanks to Smiling Spectre and Toll for reporting.
  • Made it so that wall clocks, hanging flags, and similar now can't be set to hang in the sky.
  • Storm Dash now costs 9 MP per use instead of 14, and can also now be used every 0.66 seconds instead of every 1.5 seconds.
    • It also now only lasts for 0.5 seconds instead of 0.5 seconds plus 0.5 seconds per tier, and it now has a level cap per tier like storm rush does.
    • Lastly, it only boosts you to 300% of your normal speed now, instead of 500%, making it easier to control this.
    • Thanks to zebramatt for suggesting.
  • Miniature, Shrink, Seize, Storm Dash, Storm Rush, Lesser Teleport, and Greater Teleport all now always a single magic point cost no matter what the tier of the related gem is compared to your current level.
    • Since the tier of the gem only affects the regions in which you can use the gem, this is fitting.
    • Thanks to Armanant for suggesting.
  • When you turn around, your deceleration is now 3x faster than normal. This has many practical benefits, but it allows you to "pull up" from storm rush/dash to prevent massive sliding way out into the middle of nowhere. It also just gives a bit more direct a feeling of control in general, when moving around and changing directions quickly.
  • If there are abilities in the player's inventory that could be activated by double-tapping in a specific direction (or double jumping), it now excludes any that are unable to be used in the current chunk because of that chunk's level.
    • This is handy because then if there are multiple such items in the inventory, it will go ahead and use whichever one IS valid to be used, if there are multiple and the normal first choice isn't valid here.
    • Thanks to Terraziel for suggesting.
  • Added in new "Experience Points Containers."
    • These are the first major source of EXP beyond just killing bosses, and they essentially reward those who want to explore rather than fight.
    • At the moment, at same-level chunk to the civ level, it takes just about 100 of these containers to get from one civ level to the next. At +10 levels it takes about 75 of them, and in between is a gradient between 100 and 75.
    • At -10 levels it takes more than 10,000 of them to level up, so there's really no sense in farming low-level regions. Playing one region down will only make it take 125, and two regions down makes it take about 167 containers. And it goes up exponentially from there.
  • Inside buildings is the only place to find Experience Point Containers at the moment.
    • These seed far away from doors, switches, and other experience point containers. They are denser in maze-type rooms, and in fact a single large maze can contain dozens of them. Most interior rooms contain none at all, but when a hallway or similar has a dead end or other long passage that would otherwise be pointless, you'll find these there.
    • Note that vents and the normal interior goodie drops don't impact where these containers can show up.
    • Anyway, at long last this gives a suitable reward for the maze rooms; it's something we've been planning since before beta, but we'd just never gotten around to it yet.
    • Thanks to Admiral, FallingStar, JamesMowery, GrimerX and TechSY730 for reminding us about this.
  • It is no longer extra hot in the ocean caves to where you take heat damage.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting the issue in the prior version.

Beta 0.529 The Awful Truth About Fairies

(Released October 21, 2011)

  • Fixed an issue in the prior version that was causing players to take heat damage outside improperly, in places like ocean chunks and such.
    • Thanks to mrhanman for reporting.
  • Updated all of the characters and most of the monsters (all that were not already this way) to have painterly visual accents to them now.
    • They also now have a more consistent, cleaner edge line to them, making them look slightly stylized in a better way without going overboard.
    • The effect is subtle enough on all this that for many players it won't be noticeable at all, but for those who have griped about the mismatch of visual styles between the background and the characters, now the style matches among all of them.
  • All of the player ghosts are now desaturated rather than purple, making them look more imposing and more visually pleasing.
  • Created a new particle effect for players who still have just-entered-chunk invincibility. It's more attractive and less campy-looking.
  • Rather than showing the too-subtle and fairly ugly flashing line outline around the player's character, a visual representation of the "glyph" that the player carries now floats behind them.
    • This has story/thematic significance that we've not really revealed yet anyhow, which makes it fit well why your character doesn't have one but other characters do.
    • The glyph also gives yet another visual indicator of when you take damage, turning red while your health bar is being shown.
  • Lots more multiplayer bugfixing.
  • Another 35 pieces of furniture have been rendered out by Josh and post-processed by Chris, and are just awaiting actual integration into the game in the next couple of days.
  • Really changed up the physics of how movement acceleration is applied internally. Now you keep your momentum even after you slow down, which feels more realistic and natural, and makes storm dash more useful in some circumstances and storm rush less useful in some circumstances (indoors, principally).
    • Thanks to Penumbra for suggesting.
  • Additionally, storm dash and storm rush both now are only active for as long as you keep holding down the direction you were moving when you activated them. If no X direction was active when you activated the spell (such as if you right-click the spell from your inventory while standing still), then it will work the same as it did before until you hold down an X direction and then release it.
    • This lets you make much more controlled movements when you are using storm dash and storm rush, and also causes them to expire when you go to a new chunk unless you keep holding down the entire time.
    • Thanks to mrhanman and zebramatt for suggesting.
  • Similarly, Ride the Lightning and Lightning Rocket now only remain active for as long as you are jumping. This lets you really control your RTL jumps more in particular, and it also lets you cancel a long lightning rocket rather than being stuck on the ceiling for its duration.
    • However, if you were not holding jump when you activated one of the two spells (such as if you right-clicked them from your inventory), then they will work before until you give some command on the Y axis (tapping jump, or tapping down, will cancel them in those instances).
    • Thanks to Armanant for suggesting.
  • A number of enemies now behave more interestingly, pursuing you from much further distances when they have been damaged.
  • Starting at civ level 5, there is now a new underground boss that's thrown into the mix: green fairies. These are tiny, but show up in clusters of 5 (each giving 1/5th the normal experience points).
    • The green ones really aren't so bad at this point, although they are requiring specific strategies in order to best them. But starting at level 20, red fairies take the place of the green fairies in the underground, and the new red fairies are among the harder minibosses in the game now.
    • More underground bosses to come soon, including at least one more variant on the fairies.

Beta 0.528 The Overlord Experience

(Released October 20, 2011)

  • When you get to a low enough underground cavern system that it turns lava-looking, you now take heat damage and will no longer take cold damage. Bring your heatsuit!
    • Thanks to Aeronic and others for suggesting.
  • Rare Commodity Towers are now properly labeled as that on the world map, rather than being called Rare Commodity Dungeons.
  • A boss room was added by @B0FH, thus bringing the total to more than 50! A far cry from the 15 or so that were in the game when we launched beta.
  • The game now mentions where to find the error files to send in when it has a fatal error.
  • The game now gives you more warp potions, and a few more magic potions, compared to how many health potions it gives you.
    • Thanks to James Allen for suggesting.
  • There is a new ambient music track by Pablo that now plays in the ground level settlements.
    • Thanks to Dizzard for suggesting.
  • Some more cool multiplayer stuff to make the experience smoother in high-lag situations.
  • Changed it up so that now only amoebas and espers do the scaling-up-and-down thing while in their magic casting pose. It did look more than a little odd with things like giant skelebots.
    • Thanks to nat_401 for suggesting.
  • Added in a new Minimap Max Scale settings option, which defaults to 400%, and which limits how large smaller rooms can show up inside the screen area that you allocate for the minimap.
    • Thanks to Ixiohm, techsy730, and Hyfrydle for suggesting.
  • Beating an overlord or a lieutenant and getting a measly amount of EXP is definitely lame. Additionally, lieutenants and overlords are something you pretty much have to face sometime if you play the main gameplay line, so having EXP rewards for fighting them early or penalties for fighting them late doesn't make a lot of sense. It's not like fighting a miniboss or a microboss, in a lot of respects.
    • To that end, overlords and lieutenants now give you a fixed (high) level of EXP. Lieutentants now give you enough to level up for sure, and overlords give you enough for three levels all at once.
    • Thanks to Dizzard for pointing out how poorly the old system worked when you massively overleveled an overlord.
  • Fixed the issue in the prior version where the minimap would start the wrong scale when switching between chunks with vastly different sizes.
    • Thanks to Armanant for reporting.
  • Put a tooltip on the quick-load button on the main menu that clarifies that it is for quick-loading the last world.
    • Thanks to leb0fh for suggesting.

Beta 0.527 Greater Teleport and Lightning Rocket

(Released October 19, 2011)

  • A boss room was added from Dizzard, and an Overlord Room was added by zebramatt.
  • Adjusted down the cooldown times and telegraphing times for the giant amoeba variants so that they aren't so slow at firing.
    • Thanks to evilbee for suggesting.
  • Fixed an issue from the prior version where often enemies were not aiming at the player properly.
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting.
  • The way that the minimap scaling works is now completely different.
    • Previously there was a scale slider, but that is now gone.
    • Now there are a pair of percentages that you can set between 0 and 100 for both the width and height.
      • The default is 20%x15%. This means that the minimap is, by default, able to cover 20% of the width of your screen at most, and 15% of the height of your screen at most.
      • The nice thing about this is that it makes sense on any screen size, and automatically scales as you shift your screen size.
    • Thanks to many players, including zebramatt, for suggesting things along these lines.
  • The minimap used to have only two states: normal and fullscreen. Now it has four states: Normal, 2x, fullscreen, and off.
    • You can easily switch between these with the M key, which makes turning off the minimap during a boss battle fairly straightforward, and it makes having a double-sized map temporarily for exploration something that is a lot more feasible on larger monitors in particular.
    • Thanks to zebramatt for suggesting.
  • The minimap no longer stops animating when the game is paused, and can now be scaled while the game is paused.
    • Thanks to BobTheJanitor for reporting.
  • Made it so that the amoeba's magic/telegraph animation is now substantially more obvious—rather than just contracting, they also seem to glow.
    • Thanks to leb0fh for suggesting.
  • When monsters are casting their magic, and freezing in a single frame, their scale pulses a bit to show that they aren't frozen, they are just preparing to get you.
  • Monsters on the world map are now drawn with a bit of an animation to their scale, making them much easier to see regardless of what background they are on or how thick their border is.
  • Fixed a crash that could occur when viewing the inventory when there were more rows in it than the game is set up to display.
    • Thanks to Terraziel for reporting.
  • Messages now only show for 10 seconds instead of 60 in the message log, to keep it from always being so huge. Since you can bring up the full message log if you miss a message now, that's less of an issue than it once was, anyhow.
    • Thanks to zebramatt for suggesting.
  • The message log now has four states instead of two. Previously it was On or Full. Now it also has One Line and Off.
    • This lets you toggle between the various sizes using the existing keybind, which is handy for during boss battles or similar.
    • The really critical messages like "the chunk is paused" cannot be hidden with the Off status.
    • Thanks to zebramatt for suggesting.
  • The game now keeps track of the last world that you loaded, and a new button at the top of the main menu lets you quick-load the last world you were in.
    • Thanks to an enormous amount of players for suggesting or supporting this, including mrhanman, Arnos, arcee, huw, jerith, c4sc4, Vampyre, Kemeno, Baleyg, Enrymion, Nenad, leb0fh, Nice Save, Efrencecht, BobTheJanitor, Hyfrydle, Spork, lujan22, nat_401, Yuugi, kerzain, JamesMowery, Aklyon, friedmutant, azarakus, Underfot, wyvern83, gxam, ShadowSirius07, Ixiohm, lisa107b, and scry. To say this was the game's most-requested feature thus far would be almost an understatement!
  • The achievements button was removed from the main menu, while we were at it, because it doesn't do anything yet.
  • When loading a chunk from disk, it now does some extra checks to make sure that it has been marked as generated in the metadata, etc.
    • This will automatically fix any metadata that was somehow missed as being saved, for instance, and prevents issues such as not being able to warp to a "never visited" area that you've actually been to (and possibly are standing in).
    • Thanks to evilbee and mrhanman for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue where you'd always wind up in the wind shelter entrance when entering a chunk from an adjacent chunk.
    • Thanks to GrimerX for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug that was causing surface tunnels to pretty much NEVER happen in the grasslands, rather than having them rarely happen.
    • This same bug was also causing some oddities in the grasslands in particular where you wouldn't spawn in the right spot when walking into the chunk—you'd jump forward to the middle of the chunk, or go all the way to the next chunk.
      • This won't fix existing bad chunks, but it will prevent new ones from being created; it was a relatively rare issue anyhow, fortunately.
    • Thanks to Baleyg and jerith for reporting.
  • Switches in switch rooms now show up with a blip that is the same color as the workbench blips.
    • Thanks to Spork for suggesting.
  • Teleport now can be cast once every 1 second instead of once every 4 seconds.
    • Teleport is now limited by region level it can be used in—like shrink, miniature, and so forth.
  • Teleport is now called Lesser Teleport, and there is a new Greater Teleport option.
    • Greater teleport transmits you directly to the cursor location, even allowing your to pass through walls or other solid objects.
    • Greater teleport costs a whopping 600 MP, but it provides yet another way of going about exploring mazes, for instance.
  • Starting at level 40, players can now start finding umbra embers (a rare commodity). These are required in order to craft greater teleport.
  • Flash of light, which was previously limited to only being tier 0, now has full tiers.
    • It also now lasts for 5 seconds longer with each tier up you go with it.
  • Ride The Lightning now has a 0.66 second cooldown instead of 2 seconds. This makes it play nicer with storm dash and similar.
    • However, ride the lightning also now can only be used a single time between ground touches. This makes it no longer a "flight" spell at very high tiers; you can no longer just keep chaining them together without actually touching the ground.
    • Thanks to Baleyg and Spork for suggesting.
  • Added a very expensive Lightning Rocket spell scroll.
    • A burst of lightning propels you upwards for several seconds, letting you steer yourself and reach much greater heights than normal.
    • This can be crafted, but it also can be found in stashes.
  • The Ilari healing effect now also removes any harmful conditions from the player—this at the moment is limited to slowing frost and being on fire.
    • Thanks to leb0fh for suggesting.
  • Previously, energy pulse and tidal pulse and similar were passing through crates. This was not intended, as crates are meant to work instead like destructible walls—following all the normal blocking rules of walls except that they can be knocked down. Fixed.
    • Thanks to KDR_11k for reporting.
  • Fixed up an issue with forest rage and other "rotates to direction of movement" spells like it (but it was most notable with forest rage), where it would flip out and rotate wrong on death or certain collisions.
    • Thanks to stblr and Smiling Spectre for reporting.
  • Previously, spell-entities like dragon breath or miasma that were being set from enemies were having their level set to the civilization level under some circumstances, rather than to the level of the monster spawning them. Fixed.
    • Thanks to jerith for reporting.
  • Multiplayer work continues, of course. Entity position smoothing is among the latest stuff in today's workload, which is something we're particularly pleased to have preliminarily working (along with the prediction stuff that was already put in this week, that really should help to keep things feeling good under a variety of network conditions).
  • When tab-targeting enemies, it was still possible to have spells like energy pulse collide with a wall you were facing when you were firing backwards at them. Fixed.
    • Thanks to martyn_van_buren for reporting.
  • Previously, if you entered a boss room through side-links or other non-primary entrances, you'd be unable to go back out through that entrance because the boss was blocking it.
    • Now, rather than blocking all "inward" doors, bosses and locked rooms/stairwells instead block off any passages that you have not yet been through. Thus you can now go back out the way you came, but no other ways.
    • Thanks to arcee for suggesting.
  • Previously, the game was auto-targeting health/MP drops when you tried to tab-target enemies. Fixed.
  • Fire touch, death touch, ice cross, and circle of fire (skelebot and regular) now all work better around angled ground and stairs. Previously, the skelebot dwarves could hardly even fire them off at all in most stairwells.
  • Previously, if you were in the process of warping when you died, you could warp your ghost to the destination. This is now fixed to have it simply cancel the warp.
    • Thanks to kerzain for reporting.
  • Previously, in the cases when you would try to warp to the same node you were already in, it was fading you to black and not letting you see the game, though you'd still see the ability bar and be able to move around.
    • Now it doesn't fade to black, but just blips you over to the starting location you're supposed to be warping to.
    • Thanks to BobTheJanitor, Dizzard, and oobleckthegreen for reporting.
  • Put in a revised workaround for the OSX issue with mouse cursor positions getting thrown off when any keys were held down.
    • This is a unity bug, but my workaround was basically fixing it for all except the bottom 100px of the screen. Now it fixes it for the whole screen, but hopefully won't cause any issue with the ability to scroll the citybuilding/strategic maps upwards on OSX or windows.
    • Thanks to Sherlock for reporting.
  • Fixed a pair of issues. First, lieutenants were becoming the level of the overlords that they went to help. Secondly, they were not going back to their regular level when they returned to their evil outposts.
    • Now the level of both lieutenants and overlords are set solely based on the level of the region they come from, and not anything about the current chunk they are located in at the time, wherever they happen to travel.
    • Thanks to Penumbra for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where acid water could be seeded in a very odd sort of wall that was not physically possible. Very rarely, and usually underground when it happened.
    • Thanks to Bossman for the report.
  • Put in logic such that both lamps and hanging traps no longer seed right near and above the switches in switch rooms. Thus providing a bit of warning, rather than instant death, if the switch happens to be booby-trapped...
    • Thanks to BobTheJanitor and zebramatt for suggesting.
  • When there are activated enemy traps in a room, players can no longer warp out of the room (a "malevolent force" blocks them).
    • Thanks to Sherlock and zebramatt for suggesting.

Beta 0.526 Telegraphing Crates

(Released October 18, 2011)

  • Fixed a bug that was making hallways in The Deep not generate.
  • Fixed bug where evil-lieutenants dying while aiding an overlord (and thus outside the region containing the lieutenant's outpost) was not marking the corresponding outpost as destroyed.
    • Also put in a retroactive repair check that will be processed on all worlds older than this version and will mark an outpost as destroyed if it has no living lieutenant.
    • Thanks to ColdPrototype for the report and save.
  • Previously, attractive item drops (health, magic, and shards) could be tab-targeted by players. Fixed.
    • Thanks to Sherlock for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug that would cause an error when the game tried to add tables into certain areas.
  • Snowsuits and heatsuits no longer have a max level on their usage—they are crafted at the outfitter, which doesn't use spellgems/dust anymore, and thus inherently doesn't have tiers. So having snowsuits with multiple tiers just doesn't work at all, or make any sense. Sorry about the confusion!
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting.
  • Put in a change so that higher-tier equipment now has a buffer of 9 levels before it starts to degrade, same as lower-tier equipment does.
    • This means that at no time are a higher and lower tier of gem actually equivalent for you. You still retain the time to gain the new gems over a slower period as you level up, but the difference now is that the higher-tier stuff you're finding as you do so is now demonstrably more powerful and more expensive to use for a while.
    • Thanks to KDR_11k for suggesting.
  • Previously, the offensive stats of enemies got higher and lower at a sort of fixed rate based on their relative level to the civ level. This didn't really work all that well for all difficulty and skill permutations.
    • Now on Master Hero and above, the lower-level enemies get easier MUCH slower, but the higher-level enemies still get harder just as fast.
    • Now on Apprentice and below, the higher-level enemies get easier quite a bit slower than before, but the lower-level ones still get easier just as fast as before.
    • On the default (Hero) action difficulty, enemies now get both easier and harder a bit slower than they did before.
    • Thanks to many players for bringing up this issue in various contexts over the last few weeks. Please let us know if you think it needs further tweaking, of course!
  • Put in a change such that if for whatever reason an offensive magic spell doesn't have room to actually spawn any offensive magic effects, it won't charge you the MP cost of it, it won't trigger the cooldown, and it will play a buzz sound instead of the spell sound.
    • This is particularly relevant for things like ice cross and circle of fire in very enclosed conditions.
    • Thanks to KDR_11k for reporting.
  • Put in some logic checks that should prevent a rare crash that could happen in the inventory.
    • Thanks to Terraziel for reporting.
  • Added six Atrium room maps courtesy of zebramatt.
  • Added in more furniture in Medieval buildings, Contemporary buildings, Ice Age, and Bronze Age buildings. Lots more coming here!
  • Fixed a bug with the shadow bat boss pathing that could lead to the bats being right next to you but unable to hit you if you stood at just the right spot next to a wall.
    • Thanks to Aeronic for reporting.
  • Fixed another bug with a lot of the flying enemies in general that could lead to them never recovering from one pass at you so that they would make another pass.
  • Monsters that spawn were previously being prevented from acting until they were scaled up to full size. Well, thanks to the recent shifts to make characters unable to scale up when they would not fit into the space that was allocated for them, this led to some monsters "sleeping" or being "stuck in the ground." Now they will act as expected, and grow to full size when there is room for them to do so.
    • Thanks to Ixiohm and Bossman for reporting.
  • Launch Rock now has all new sound effects for its launch and hit.
  • The emit light and crafting recipe learned sounds have been improved.
  • Added a new sound effect for the eagle attacks (previously they had just been the bat attack sounds).
  • Death touch now has its own sound effect.
  • Crates now count as shaded on the minimap.
  • Cedar logs plus quartz now allow players to craft their own crates which can be used as mobile cover or to climb on like wooden platforms.
    • Thanks to Underfot for suggesting.
  • All of the various deployable items from the outfitter aside from traps were previously always level 0. Now they take on the level of the player who is deploying them, giving them actually a reasonable amount of health.
  • Lots of various work on multiplayer client-side prediction in particular, but among other things. Less destructively central changes here than in the last couple of releases, which is good! Not that a whole lot of bugs from the prior versions made it into public hands anyhow, which was also good.
  • Added a boss room from Aeronic.
  • The custom mouse cursor color is now animated, making it a lot more attractive and easier to see.
    • Thanks to Itchykobu and BobTheJanitor for suggesting.
  • Monsters using a ranged ability now briefly stop moving and switch to their "magic" animation before actually using the ranged ability.
    • This is about 1 second for lightning espers and skelebot snipers, etc.
    • This is about 0.3 seconds for skelebot dwarves using circle-of-fire.
  • Fixed bug where if a region was blocked by a vortex pylon it was still not drawing the not-scouted-fog on the strategy map despite there no longer being a graphical collision between the blocked-by-vortex effect and the not-scouted-fog.
    • Thanks to KDR_11k for the report.
  • Skelebot snipers and skelebot dwarves now have a melee attack that they will hit you with if you get too close to them, instead of being ranged-only.
    • This makes them a lot more effective in enclosed spaces.
  • Skelebot dwarves no longer miss their first shot if you're standing still in particular.
    • Thanks to Toll for reporting.
  • Monsters with melee and ranged attacks are now able to switch between them more quickly.
  • Circle of fire (for players and skelebot dwarves) is now using a tigher loop of fire bursts, which works much nicer in close quarters, and actually outdoors, too.
  • Circle of fire and fire touch now use a smaller collision box that is more in keeping with the actual burst effect, and which allows them to pack into tight spaces better.
  • Previously, if you hit the confirm key while still moving to a destination region on the world map, you'd wind up in the wrong region.
    • Now it's fixed so that it ignores any confirm button presses until you actually arrive at the destination, making it so that the confusion is fixed.
  • Overlords now have about 3/4 the health they previously did, as they were a bit on the grindy side before even if you over-leveled them.
    • Thanks to zebramatt for suggesting.
  • Put in some correction code so that when a boss is stuck in the upper left corner for whatever reason (or any other actor entity), it will now try to teleport them out of the wall.
    • We've generally been working on fixing all the cases where enemies could be seeded up there anyhow, but for the few remaining ones that simply have been hard to track down, this now corrects them after the fact and should hopefully close the issue.
    • Thanks to GrimerX for the most recent report.
  • Strategy/Settlement-management: Fixed a bug where if there were no npcs in the current settlement, the next-npc and previous-npc buttons would be drawn a bit off the top-left corner of the screen and (among other things) would block mouse handling on the next-settlement and previous-settlement buttons.
    • Thanks to AlexxKay for the report.
  • Fixed an issue where if a player was ever to get "stuck in a wall" for any reason, the game now teleports them to a random other location in the area they are in.
    • Thanks to KDR_11k for providing such a save.
  • Fixed an issue where if a player's character was too tall to fit in the space where a door let them out (especially likely with neutral skelebots, although still not terribly common), the character would wind up placed in a really odd spot, potentially even in a wall.
    • Now characters start out smaller when coming through doors, and then grow to their full size if they can.
    • Thanks again to KDR_11k for that save and report.
  • Also fixed an issue where smaller-than-normal entities could still wrongly collide with background tiles under some circumstances.
  • The scale of entities is now properly saved to disk, so that they don't wind up getting erroneously moved on load of a savegame.
  • Fixed the issue with various gem veins or underground entrances sometimes not seeding.
    • Previously, they could not be placed anywhere that the underground ladders already were. Now they are placed, and any ladders that would have collided with them are instead removed, which works far better.
    • This doesn't fix any existing missing veins or entrances, but it will stop new ones from being omitted.
    • Thanks to Baleyg, martyn_van_buren, Bossman, evilbee, and others for reporting.

Beta 0.525 Rushing Minis

(Released October 15, 2011)

  • Fixed an exception that could occur when the F3 debug menu was open when exiting to the main menu.
    • Thanks to martyn_van_buren for reporting.
  • Spells that cause an effect that lasts a finite amount of time _that varies by tier of the spell_ now show that timespan in their tooltips. Most spells have some sort of duration that isn't something that ever changes, and those don't clutter up the tooltips with info that never changes/
    • Right now this applies to Emit Light scrolls, Ride The Lightning, and Storm Dash.
  • Another boss room added by zebramatt.
  • The Miniature spell no longer has a time limit attached to it. Use it once to shrink down, and use it again to grow back larger.
    • The cooldown time on miniature has been reduced from 4 seconds to 0.66 seconds, making it so that it can be used for dodging, etc. It also now uses a movement cooldown instead of logistical.
    • Thanks to a number of players for suggesting this.
  • The following spells/objects now have level caps on them: Miniature, Shrink, Seize, Snowsuit, Heatsuit.
    • These can now only be used up until ( Tier * 10 ) + 5 chunk levels. Older tierless versions are treated as tier 1.
    • Thus a Tier I (or 0) snowsuit can now only be used in chunks up to level 15, for instance. Tier II snowsuits can be used up to level 25, and so on.
    • Thanks to a number of players for suggesting this.
  • When players drop the snowsuit or heatsuit that they are wearing, it now makes them take off the suit visually
    • Additionally, when the area is too high-level for the suit, it now makes them take it off.
  • Fixed a couple of bugs with players keeping running to the side (or even storm dashing) when the escape menu is brought up during gameplay and while the arrow keys are held down.
    • Thanks to Penumbra for reporting.
  • Previously, if you were too over-leveled compared to a boss, it would have a potential to give you 0 EXP for beating that boss.
    • Now the minimum amount of EXP that can be gained by killing a given boss is based on the boss type:
      • Microboss: 1
      • Miniboss: 5
      • Lieutenant: 50
      • Overlord: 500
  • Added a new Storm Rush spell.
    • A sustained burst of speed propels you forward at 500% of your normal rate, but you take twice as much damage during this time. Costs magic points every second, and lasts until you run out of magic points or use the ability a second time. Does not work if your speed is currently reduced to zero. Automatically used if in your inventory and you double-tap left or right.
    • This is basically identical to Storm Dash, except that it costs more MP and is sustained until you disable it. It also takes magma added to the normal storm dash recipe to make this work.
    • Thanks to Itchykobu for suggesting.

Beta 0.524 Lieutenant Battle Rock

(Released October 13, 2011)

  • The general rate of EXP gain from killing bosses was too high, especially when playing against levels higher than your own.
    • The rate of EXP gain has been approximately halved.
    • The rate of EXP gain from lieutenants was particularly off—it has been quartered.
    • And the rate of EXP gain from overlords was even more extreme. It's now 1/8th what it previously was.
    • Thanks to FallingStar and others for suggesting.
  • Previously, higher-tier spells that players could get were actually having their MP costs inflated by 4x of what their equivalent damage would be.
    • This turned out to be way too much. The inflation has been removed.
    • Thanks to FallingStar for suggesting.
  • Previously, if you were already at full health or MP, then the minor attractive drops for health/MP would just circle around you until you were below full health.
    • Now, the minor attractive health/MP drops are only attracted to players that are actually in need of them. If there are multiple such players in multiplayer, they'll go to the nearest player that can absorb them at all. If there are no players in their range that can use them, they'll just wait where they dropped.
    • Thanks to herobago for the report that led to this change.
  • When health/MP attractive drops are dropped from enemies, now there are 10x more of them, but individually they are 10x weaker.
    • This visually looks better, and also is more functional when there are players that are almost full health.
    • Thanks to eRe4s3r for suggesting.
  • The auto-potion for when your health hits 0 has been in place for a while, and is very helpful. However, there's not been anything of that sort in place for magic points until now.
    • Now, when you try to cast a spell that you don't have enough magic points for, the game will automatically auto-potion your MP same as your HP would be if you reached 0. The logic is literally the same, so I won't re-enumerate it here.
    • Same as with the auto-potions for healing, when you auto-potion for magic points it causes your cooldown for the magic potions to take 1.5x as long as normal. Not generally an issue, but still worth noting.
    • Thanks to gooseman for suggesting.
  • A sound effect is now played when the player tries to cast a spell that they do not have the MP for, and which they are unable to auto-potion to use (such as if MP potions are still cooling down or they have no MP potions).
    • Thanks to GrimerX for suggesting.
  • Improved the scale-up-to-full-size logic for all entities so that the entities will stop scaling up if to do so would cause them to get stuck in a wall or ceiling.
    • This makes it so that exploring very small passages with the miniature spell is a lot more effective, and it prevents enemies that spawn from monster spawners in tight quarters from getting stuck in walls.
    • This also applies when you are tiny and standing right next to a wall (because your width expands, too). Until you move away from the wall, you won't get your full size back.
  • It is no longer possible to transmogrify or put on/off a suit if the resulting change in your character's size would cause them to get stuck in a wall, the floor, or ceiling. A message is instead shown in those cases, telling you that there isn't room to transform there.
    • Thanks to James Mowery, Underfot, and azarakus for reporting.
  • Previously, miniature was being disallowed from players in suits or bat forms. This caused various problems and inconsistencies, though—it's now allowed for you to become miniature regardless of what your form is.
    • Thanks to FallingStar for reporting.
  • Added a new boss room by zebramatt.
  • Yet another awesome new music track from Pablo, this one for the Lieutenant boss battles!
  • Sometimes we sneak in something new and neat and don't mention what it actually is.

Beta 0.523 Miniatures and Health/MP Drops

(Released October 12, 2011)

  • Fixed a bug in the rendering code where it was trying to access player data while still on the main menu, if the keyboard "aiming" reticule had been active (apparently).
    • Thanks to martyn_van_buren for the report.
  • Fixed a bug with upgrading old worlds to add consciousness nodes or vortex pylons was trying to write to an ability-use-result despite that code happening outside of ability processing, and thus throwing a null exception.
  • Put in a pretty major balance change in favor of the players:
    • Previously, your equipment was always getting progressively worse each time your civ level went up, which meant that with same-tier equipment you were actually losing ground, which wasn't our intent.
    • This has been rebalanced to have a 9-level "grace period" wherein equipment doesn't start degrading.
      • This means that as soon as you hit civ level 10, for instance, your tier 1 stuff STARTS to degrade. But the degradation is equivalent now at level 10 to what it used to be at level 2 for tier I stuff. And level 11 is like level 3 was, and so on.
      • The net effect means that there are no longer increasing "periods of weakness" between levels 2-9 and 12-19, and so on; those remain stable areas, and your equipment only starts to get weaker when you're actually able to get replacement equipment of a higher tier.
      • This also applies to potions and the like, not just stuff you craft yourself, so that's really quite helpful all around. Now you actually have time to FIND more potions, more equipment, and so on before you're hurting from the lack of it.
    • Thanks to many players for weighing in on this.
  • Made it so that the tier of gems and objects you gain is now somewhat randomized rather than always being fixed.
    • The tier of the object is based on the chunk level. So what we're doing is randomizing how it looks at the chunk level.
    • There is now a 40% chance that the tier of the object will be equivalent to chunk level + 1.
    • There is now a 20% chance that the tier of the object will be equivalent to chunk level + 2.
    • There is now a 0.1% chance that the tier of the object will be equivalent to chunk level + 10 (these will be exciting finds, to be sure).
    • Thanks to many players for suggesting this as well, including zebramatt and Jerebaldo1 most directly.
  • Added a new Miniature spell gem recipe:
    • Costs one purple dispersia gem and one moonstone.
    • You shrink down to a quarter your normal size, making you able to fit through small passages and harder for enemies to hit, but you take twice as much damage during this time. Lasts for 8 seconds plus two seconds per tier. Automatically used if in your inventory and you double-tap down.
    • This should make neutral skelebots a lot more feasible to use, among other benefits.
  • Changed up the Emit Light scroll effect length so that the effect lasts for 8 minutes plus 2 minutes per tier of scroll.
    • The tier 1 scrolls are thus the same effectiveness they always have been, but higher-tier scrolls are now more effective and thus more attractive.
    • Thanks to Toll for suggesting.
  • Magic potions are now a bit more common of a drop in stash rooms.
  • The volume of wood platforms given in a stash room has now been lowered. Same for some of the spell scrolls that can be found there.
  • A new and powerful (but non-combat) spell scroll can now be found in some stashes. This is the first spell scroll that can't be directly crafted.
  • Fixed an issue with tier-less spells costing too much MP.
    • Thanks to Itchykobu for reporting.
  • Made it so that the MP cost of Nightfall and Sunrise are now 600 instead of their former value.
    • Thanks to Itchykobu for suggesting.
  • Made it so that item pickups and Ilari healing can both trigger for a player that is not moving. Previously, you could only pick up the items or get healed / scroll replenished if you were moving around.
  • Fixed an issue where the cooldowns of NPCs (including Illari, big bosses, and so on) were not being properly reset when the chunk was dropped to disk but the world was not yet dropped to disk.
    • Thanks to martyn_van_buren, c4sc4, and jerith for reporting that this was still happening.
  • Fixed an issue with one of the destroyed room types not properly including any space to actually put a door!
    • Thanks to lutherblissett for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue where some destroyed rooms with two doors were only seeding one door because of an error in the room template file.
    • Fixed the definition, but also fixed it so that the auto-cleanup code of the interior generator now prefers to carve ceilings instead of floors in order to minimize this issue happening with any other bad templates.
    • Thanks to BobTheJanitor for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue where amoebas—giant and regular—could not fire their spells from in corners.
    • Thanks to Efrencecht for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue where amoebas—again giant and regular—could not fire their spells if a player was standing in front of them.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue with ranged spells hitting the ground when they should not have when you were right against the ground as a bat or a miniature.
    • Thanks to James Mowery for reporting.
  • Because of the changes to how the lieutenants seed in general, now any lieutenant that is lower-tier or equal-tier to an overlord will help that overlord, from anywhere in the world.
    • There was previously a bug where basically every lieutenant was coming to help regardless of distance or level, but now it's properly limiting based on the level.
    • Thanks to Toll and c4sc4 for reporting the original issue.
  • Lightning Espers now move much faster when they are bosses, making them a lot more interesting.
    • They also really change up their behaviors when they are a boss, now.
    • Thanks to Armanant for suggesting.
  • Non-boss enemies now drop minor health and MP pickups that are auto-attracted to you like the shard drops are. The new percentages are:
    • 10% minor healing drops
    • 10% minor MP drops
    • 50% shard drops
    • 30% no drop

Beta 0.522 Shadow Pathing

(Released October 11, 2011)

  • Busted up a bunch of stuff while doing some preliminaries for multiplayer support. Singleplayer still appears stable, but looks may be deceiving. Perhaps backing up your world files would be a good idea.
  • Fixed a bug where destroyed pylons would sometimes be "reactivated" by loading the game or by destroying another pylon.
    • Thanks to jerith for the report.
  • Fixed a bug where the exact regions blocked by a pylon could change depending on the order of processing of the pylons (which in turn can vary for a number of reasons). It now always draws the line from the region with the lower internal ID to the region with the higher internal ID, regardless of which one "started" the connection. This also prevents situations where it was computing _both_ lines.
  • Fixed a bug where the strategy turn number was not being reset when unloading the game.
    • Thanks to Oz33 for the report.
  • In 0.521, there were completely invalid summoned rhino scrolls being given out. It wasn't actually even giving you a scroll—it was giving you a rhino to put in your pocket. This led to the art looking wrong, the rhinos not stacking with the scrolls, and the stats of deploying them not working quite right either.
    • Thanks to gxam and Smiling Spectre for reporting.
  • In a recent version all destroyed ghosts were accidentally "brought back to (active) death", leading to many players encountering a situation where every time they died it would have a large pool of those other ghosts not currently rampaging to go rampaging with. The nature of the bug is such that it won't recur, but there are still worlds out there with a significant overpopulation of "free"/"threat" ghosts so:
    • When loading any world older than this version, all ghosts not currently in a rampaging group will be quietly put back into really-dead status. They may be back someday.
    • Thanks to KDR_11k for the report and c4sc4 for the save.
  • The region number levels now show as purple when there is a vortex on them.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for suggesting.
  • Fixed up the "blocked by vortex" icon in the tooltips to just show a single frame from the animation rather than all the frames in a grid.
  • Josh has added more boss rooms, bringing the total to 46. A few of the existing ones were also updated.
  • Many of the interior hallways have been updated and expanded to make more room. Hopefully this will eliminate the inaccessible rooms that people have been running into. If you guys are still seeing this after this update, please let us know.
  • Created a completely new AI logic branch for the giant shadow bats and dragonfire. This is the most complex AI logic yet for this game, but there's more to come in that area likely this week.
    • The new logic uses a highly optimized pathfinding algorithm adapted from Alden Ridge, which lets the bats follow you with a lot more precision, not get stuck on the cavern geometry, etc.
    • The way that the giant shadow bats make angular turns, and how long they take to come around for another pass, has also been really changed up.
    • Thanks to lisa107b for suggesting.
  • Snowsuits no longer offer complete protection against slowing frost, but instead only halve the effect of each slowing frost applied to them.
    • So that means it takes 4 slowing frostings to hit 0 movement ability when in a snowsuit, rather than it taking the normal 2.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 pointing out that since you generally would be wearing a snowsuit any time you encountered an ice bat, this made their ability kind of pointless if the protection was complete.
  • Teleport is now considered a movement type spell rather than a logistical spell, and so are warp scrolls.
  • Previously, all spells shared a global cooldown of half a second on top of whatever their individual category of cooldowns was.
    • Now that global cooldown is only applied between offensive and logistical actions. Defensive and movement actions are on their own cooldowns which don't share in the global cooldowns at all.
    • This should make it so that:
      • The healing from the illari should work a lot better, when it tries to do multiple abilities to you at once (heal, MP, warp scrolls, etc).
      • Casting shields and using potions no longer temporarily disables your ability to use offensive spells, and vice versa.
      • Ride the Lightning and Storm Dash no longer get momentarily blocked by the other spells and vice-versa.
  • Previously, the double-tap effect for storm dash was triggered if your keypresses came within 350ms of one another. This made for more accidental double-taps than intended, though. This timing has been shortened to 200ms.
  • Fixed an issue that would make it almost impossible to rebind mouse keys if you clicked the mouse button on the actual choose-a-mouse-button button to do so.
    • Thanks to zebramatt for reporting.
  • Previously, the magic restoration potion/scroll power was being scaled with the action difficulty when it should not have been (since the max magic points is not scaled with the difficulty). Fixed.
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting.
  • Previously, using the "use best potion" hotkeys for health and magic points was using two potions but only actually healing you by one. Fixed.
    • Thanks to Yuugi and PattyG for reporting.

Beta 0.521 Storm Dash

(Released October 7, 2011)

  • Fixed a bug that was still letting the removed profession books seed.
    • Thanks to Sherlock for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue where the "Warp To Origin Settlement" button was showing up in an incorrect manner in the various sub-menus of the escape menu.
    • Thanks to Sherlock for reporting.
  • Ball Of Light now costs 10 MP instead of 50.
    • Thanks to relmz32 for suggesting.
  • The percentage of the giant maze rooms in overlord/lieutenant towers have gone from 50/20 to 5/1.
    • Thanks to James Mowery for suggesting.
  • Any character with 100+ cold resistance is now immune to slowing frost—so snowsuits can be used to get protection from ice bat's slowing effect, for instance.
  • Any character with 100+ heat resistance is now immune to being set on fire—so the heatsuit is useful against fire bats or the dragon breath, for instance.
  • Drastically reduced the size of underground dungeons, down from 30-60 nodes to a "mere" 5-20 nodes instead.
    • This really helps with the "signal to noise" ratio in terms of how much time is spent trawling through caverns with nothing good in them versus going into caverns that have something you really want.
    • Also, it makes the caves a lot less mono-sized, which makes them feel a lot more varied and natural anyhow.
  • Fixed an exception that could happen if the escape key was mashed a bunch while bringing up the crafting interface as well.
    • Thanks to scry for reporting.
  • Added a new "Stash" attribute that dungeon nodes can have. Right now it's only applied to interior dungeon nodes, same as the destroyed attribute.
    • This is something that varies by building type as to how many stashes you will find, and where they are typically located. But, all of the "useless" building types that don't have something like a boss or an overlord or something in them have a very good chance of having stashes. The main ones that don't are the ones that are THAT heavily destroyed.
    • A stash room has a special stash that was hidden here during the upheaval of the cataclysm—so lots of goodies for you to take. Some things that normally you'd have to craft, and some other things in bulk that normally you'd spend a lot of time trying to find. Short on health potions, for instance? Here's your ticket.
  • In the prior version, player character magic power was scaling with the difficulty level. Fixed.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue that was still seeding enemies improperly in buildings regardless of the level gating.
  • Lava flats and the deep are no longer considered hostile terrain in that they no longer suck you into themselves. It was just annoying, and didn't add anything.
    • Thanks to Dizzard for inspiring this change.
  • The additional boost per tier of ride the lightning has been halved.
  • Ride The Lightning is now automatically applied from anywhere in your inventory, not just your active bar, when you double jump.
    • This means that the only way to disable it is to drop it from your inventory, but that seems preferable at this point to always taking up a main ability bar slot with this.
    • Thanks to a number of players for suggesting this.
  • Added a new Storm Dash spellgem, which you can craft using yellow citrine and a cherry (available starting at level 8).
    • A brief burst of speed propels you forward at 500% of your normal rate, but you take twice as much damage during this time. Does not work if your speed is currently reduced to zero. Automatically used if in your inventory and you double-tap left or right.
  • Fixed a bug in the prior versions where even if all of the damage from a spell was blocked, the fire DoT or frost slowing effects were still being erroneously applied to the player.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug in the prior version where potions that were auto-applied were healing players more than they should have (and more than using them manually).
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting.
  • The loot drops that pop out of enemies now pop out in a cluster inside of the enemy's collision box, rather than all in a line. This looks much better.
    • Thanks to Armanant for suggesting.
  • Added in two new keybinds: Use Best Available Healing (default bound to Y) and Use Best Available Magic Restoration (default bound to U). Both do what they say on the tin, ignoring what is currently on your ability bar and looking at your entire inventory.
    • Thanks to PattyG for suggesting.
  • Finally fixed that bug with the double-firing of spells and other abilities being possible if you were to fire them quick enough in succession.
    • Thanks to Admiral, Menagon, Itchykobu, and Commiesalami, among others, for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue where some guardian stones were still mentioning profession books as a tip about getting higher level spells.
    • Thanks to jerith for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue where the healing/mana scrolls/potions were not reporting the action-difficulty-adjusted values for themselves in their tooltips.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting.
  • Actual pretty (and fully animated) vortex icons are now shown for the regions that are blocked by vortexes.

Beta 0.520 Shields Up!

(Released October 7, 2011)

  • Settlements that you've actually previously visited can no longer be blocked by vortex pylons. This only applies to old worlds as in new ones you simply can't enter them to begin with until the pylon is out of the way.
    • Thanks to Toll for the report of the blocked settlement.
  • Fixed an error in the Vortex Pylon tooltip: the range is 13 regions, not 6.
    • Thanks to Bossman for the report.
  • Casting the emit light spell and ball of light spell no longer breaks your start-of-chunk invincibility.
    • Thanks to zebramatt for suggesting.
  • Some crafting recipe changes:
    • Circle of Fire now requires a cherry to craft, rather than granite, making it not available right from the start anymore.
    • Same deal with Douse Monster Nest, it now requires quartz rock instead of granite.
    • Seize now requires copper ore instead of quartz rock, and death touch now requires quartz rock instead of granite.
  • Added in water, fire, earth, and air shields.
    • These all cost the raw gem of their respective element, plus a granite rock, to craft.
    • Future releases will add light and entropy shields also.
    • Right now all shield spells are identical, but in time they will provide different elemental bonuses.
    • So what do they do? A magical shield bursts forth to provide 1.5 seconds of protection, absorbing up to its spell power of incoming damage.
    • Please note that the hiss sound effect for these is temporary.
  • Fixed up the image preloading so that it's not preloading images for every NPC in the game as soon as the world is loaded. This keeps the first loading time on the game start a lot lower, and just loads in those images that are needed as you move around the world and visit chunks that actually contain those NPCs. That was always the intent, but it wasn't working quite right until now.
  • Added two new categories of spell cooldowns: movement and defensive.
    • Normally these sort of things all used to be lumped under logistical, but that was not very helpful.
    • Now ride the lighting is the first spell to be in the movement category, and the new shield spells are all the first to be in the defensive category.
  • Changed up the way that random stat bonuses are given to the bosses. Previously, all bosses had 20 points of bonuses to apply; this was WAY too tough.
    • Now the microbosses only get 5 points, minibosses get 10 points, lieutenants get 15 points, and overlords still get 20 points.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for suggesting.
  • Bosses no longer get the randomization of movement speeds that regular enemies get (ranging from 0.9 to 1.2).
  • Some level-gating fixes:
    • Previously, the minibosses that could be seeded at vortex pylons, guarding monster depots, and the like were not being level-gated in any way, leading to way too hard boss fights too early into the game. Fixed so that these are now level-gated by the region they are spawning in.
    • Previously, the rampaging monsters were having their level-gating handled by the region they were spawning on. This wasn't really helpful, because since they advance on you, you wind up fighting monsters that are too challenging too soon without having any option about it.
      • Now all the rampaging monsters are gated by the civ level of the world, not the region they spawn on.
    • Thanks to Itchykobu for reporting having to fight ice bat microbosses right from the start of the game.
  • Microboss base health has been further reduced by 1/3.
    • Thanks to Tayrtahn for suggesting.
  • The time between heal scroll/potion and magic restoration potion uses has been reduced from 15 seconds to 10.
    • When healing potions are auto-applied to you, this means that they are now 15s waits rather than 22.5 second waits.
    • It simply wasn't very fun having to wait so long between potion uses, but this should still prevent players from spamming the spells.
    • Thanks to James Mowery for suggesting.
  • The action difficulty of the game now affects player health, in the following way:
    • Featherweight: Health x5
    • Apprentice: Health x3
    • Hero (the default): Health x2
    • Master Hero: No Change
    • The Chosen One: Health x0.8
    • Thanks to James Mowery for inspiring this change.
  • The effectiveness of the healing potions/scrolls is also now affected by the general max health modifier of the action difficulty, meaning that you'll need only the same number of healing potions regardless of what difficulty you play on (versus needing more healing potions at lower difficulties thanks to having more health).
  • Added "Warp To Origin Settlement" button to the Escape menu when you're on the world map. When used, moves you immediately to region 0,0 (doesn't actually make you enter the settlement chunk).
    • Hopefully this should deal with the various trapped-by-pylons situations people were running to in old worlds, as well as any similar situations that may arise from changes to worldgen that make it possible to get trapped by a newly generated pylon while moving around the world map.
  • The way that the world map is generated has been completely overhauled.
    • Previously there was a lot of logic in there about which direction the map would generate higher-tier regions in, and the game was generating hundreds of unseen regions that were forming a "crust" around the actual areas you could get to. Also, as you explored around, it would generate the world partly based on where you walked, and not until you walked near an area. All of this is now completely gone.
    • The new way is simply to look at your civ level, and to then make sure that there are at least four non-water tiles for each level up to your civ level + 10. And actually, for region levels lower than 10 it makes sure there are at least 7 regions at each level, to get the world a little bit larger right from the start.
      • It generates these each time you move if it needs, to, but it has nothing to do with proximity to you, and generally speaking it will only generate any new regions when your civ level increases.
      • These changes make for both a more focused world (before it could inflate the number of regions 10x just generating stuff you wouldn't see for hours), as well as more distinct, organic worlds that grow in all directions rather than one specific direction.
      • As part of this new methodology, the efficiency of the generation algorithm has actually skyrocketed, too—many fewer transient heap allocations in RAM as you go wandering around the world map, for instance.
        • Also, the few reports of lockups that a few players were having with exploring the world map should now be a thing of the past.
    • This new method does in fact integrate seamlessly with existing worlds, no matter how large they were. It will simply fill in any missing regions anywhere around the periphery of your world.
      • On really old worlds, this might lead to some lower-level region pockets out beyond a lot of higher-level regions, but it should't be too predominant of an effect and won't hurt anything.
  • The way that overlords and lieutenants are seeded is also now completely revised:
    • Neither will even attempt to seed on regions that are lower level than 5, now. Previously, they would upconvert the region level of wherever they happened to seed, but now they don't seed until the given region level actually becomes available.
    • The overlords still require a level 20 region, so this actually means that now no overlord even "moves in" to the region until you hit civ level 10. This is kind of interesting, actually, as it's showing the progression of the world after the cataclysm—time passing and all that—rather than it just always having an overlord present from the start. It also means that for a while NPCs will talk about something completely unrelated to overlords, and then they'll start complaining about overlords when the overlords move in; that's not new code, it's just something that's cool and that dynamically happens based on existing code.
    • The overlords are now also allowed to seed closer together than before—previously it was just every 40 tiles. Now, since the world can grow organically in any direction, that won't always work. So they can seed as close together as they want to, although this often won't happen to be very close simply because they only seed one overlord per every 20 civ levels. So you have a good break between overlords (depending on your level when you defeat one), anyway.
    • Overlords and lieutenants now can't seed any closer than 5 tiles to the 0,0 region; previously the limit was 12, but now that the world grows in all directions that was too far for them to actually be seeding at all before much time had passed; the balance of this is mitigated by the fact that they don't appear at all until later in the game now.
    • Now evil outposts now seed prior to an overlord actually existing. The message shown about the lieutenants is different, though, talking about how they are waiting for the coming of an overlord.
      • Evil outposts can't seed at all until the civilization level has reached 2, though, to give a brief safer period at the start.
    • Lastly, evil outpost seeding logic is completely different—now it doesn't care how close together the outposts are. That was leading to far too randomized results (and thus difficulty) for the number of lieutenants in the world. Now it just seeds approximately one lieutenant for every 7 region levels.
  • The way that the world map is explored has been completely overhauled.
    • Previously, you had to physically move near to regions on the world map for them to become visible.
      • This was sort of a "fog of war" in the strategy game sense, but it had problems in that every time your civ level went up, you'd have to make a circuit of your whole world to find if there was anything new—which was annoying.
      • Additionally, this was confusing because there is an Explored fog of war in the strategic map. Why have two levels of fog of war? Well, we implemented the walking-around one a long time ago, before the exploration one was added on the strategic map. The strategic one is the fun and interesting one, so that's the one we're keeping, while the walking-around one is removed.
    • Also, previously there was a limit that you could only see or enter into regions that were at most 10 levels above your civ level.
      • Given that the world map now doesn't even seed regions higher than 10 levels above your civ level, this restriction has been removed. What this means for EXISTING worlds, however, is that suddenly you've got all this new (and possibly quite high-level) terrain available to you.
      • Going into these very high-level regions is something you can do if you wish, but be advised that anything over 10 levels above your civ level is likely to insta-kill you with one hit. That's not a bug, or even really a balance issue, it's just a factor of you having early access to something that normally you would not in a fresh world.
      • Given the way that pylons used to seed themselves, and the way that other things seeded themselves, though, we felt this was an important change to make. The temptation was actually to just delete all those old regions that you'd never seen before, but that gets into a lot of other troubles and could easily lead to corrupting your world, so we're steering clear of that.
  • Fire bat microbosses now are withheld until region level 6, and ice bat microbosses are withheld until region level 10.
  • The first 7 region levels are always predictable types, now:
    • 1 : Ice Age
    • 2 : Grassland
    • 3 : Desert
    • 4 : Abandoned Small Town
    • 5 : Thawing Ice Age
    • 6 : Evergreen Forest
    • 7 : Junkyard
    • And then beyond those first 7 region levels, it uses the randomization logic it's always used. But this makes for a consistent difficulty to the very start of a new world, since not having a certain region type could really be a problem for players looking to harvest specific kinds of gems, etc.
  • The health and attack powers of all enemies that are below level 7 are now automatically scaled down from whatever their normal values would be, to provide an easier transition into the game:
    • 1: 40% of normal
    • 2: 50% of normal
    • 3: 60% of normal
    • 4: 70% of normal
    • 5: 80% of normal
    • 6: 90% of normal
    • This makes it easier for players to play up region levels early on in, and gives generally more options while they are still learning the ropes and getting their basic equipment crafted and such. It also should make them able to level up faster, given the early bosses are also weakened by this.

Beta 0.519 Mysterious Pylons

(Released October 6, 2011)

  • Fixed up the interior seeding logic—no more rhinos or eagles indoors!
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting the eagles.
  • Microboss health has been dropped by half compared to the prior version.
    • Thanks to infernalmachine, Tayrtahn, FallingStar, and Jerebaldo1 for suggesting.
  • The health of the giant shadow bat minibosses have been quadrupled.
    • Thanks to FallingStar for suggesting.
  • The damage done to players over time by being on fire is now back into the realms of sanity instead of being an insta-kill situation.
    • Previously it was incorrectly basing its attack power on the player's on attack power, so that really made for fast death.
    • Now the formula is based on the level of the chunk you are in, relative to your current level, and also accounting for the action difficulty of the game.
    • For the math minded, here's the formula:
      • Base damage:
        • Featherweight: 5
        • Apprentice: 10
        • Hero: 15
        • Master Hero: 20
        • The Chosen One: 25
      • Relative level percentage calculated as:
        • Base Relative level: Chunk Level - Civ Level, clamped to -10/10.
        • Multiply base relative level times two, and add 20, to double the scale of changes.
        • Divide the new number by 10, and that gives you a percentage ranging from 0 (when you are 10 levels higher than enemies) to 4 (when you are 10+ levels lower than the chunk).
      • Final damage = base damage multiplied by the relative level percentage.
    • Thanks to many players for reporting how out of control the prior fire over time damage was; the dragon breath and fire bats won't be nearly so insane anymore.
  • Put in a change so that the game always clears the depth buffer even when it's not clearing the main draw buffers.
    • Hopefully this will solve the graphical issues when alt-tabbing out of the deep when in fullscreen mode on some machines.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for reporting.
  • Previously, boss enemies were "randomized" in their stat allocations, but the differences were so trivial that I don't think a single player ever noticed this.
    • A new system of randomization has now been put in place for the boss monsters, causing their health, magic attack, physical attack, and magic casting speed to get randomized for each boss.
    • Details? Sure:
      • There are 20 "allocation points" that the bosses all get. Each time it randomly tries to slot them into one of 10 categories:
      • Categories 1-3: Max Health is increased by 5% of its current value (so it compounds increases).
      • Categories 4-6: Magical attack is increased by 1% of its current value (again compounding). If the boss has no magical attack, it just re-rolls to get a different category instead.
      • Category 7: Magical casting speed is increased by 1 on a 10 point scale (same scale used by characters). This category takes up only one category slot, to make increases here a lot less frequent compared to the other categories.
      • Categories 8-10: Physical attack is increased by 1% of its current value (again compounding). If the boss has no physical attack, it just re-rolls to get a different category instead.
    • As with any enemy, you can see the stats of a boss by looking at them with the game paused, to help you plan your attack on them.
  • Previously, the speed degradation from the ice bats was so trivial that it wasn't even noticeable (3% for 5 seconds).
    • This was a holdover from the days when there were swarms of bats, but now that it's a lot less common to face many ice bats and they can't hit you repeatedly as much, it's time for a much more severe speed penalty from them: it's now 50% for 5 seconds.
  • There is now a very clear visual effect when you are slowed from being frosted, or when you are on fire in general.
  • For enemies with a magical attack, their magical casting speed is now shown in the pause menu tooltips.
    • This is particularly relevant now that boss stats vary.
  • Fixed it up so that enemies are now seeding better in interior stairwells and other interior locations.
    • Previously these tended to be devoid of enemies because of some seeding logic issues, but no longer.
  • Fixed an issue in the prior version where the four warp potions you started out with were not really valid warp potions that could be used.
    • Thanks to Tayrtahn for reporting.
  • Previously when players warped into various kinds of dungeon nodes, it was possible for them to get stuck in the wall or even to go blipping several chunks to the left if it was an outdoor chunk. Now your character might appear in midair and fall, but that's just the nature of warping. ;) Anyway, fixed.
    • Additionally, fixed the cases of bosses, NPCs, lieutenants, and so on spawning into the upper-left corner of rooms and getting stuck in the wall.
    • Thanks to many players, including Toll, orzelek, Sherlock, and Spork for reporting this and related issues.
  • Attractive drops (right now just used for consciousness shards) are now able to pass through ground and floor/walls, to make their movement look smoother and nicer, and to prevent them from ever being stuck in walls, etc.
    • Thanks to mrhanman, Cyborg, GrimerX, and c4sc4 for reporting or suggesting.
  • Attractive drops will no longer be attracted or absorbed by any non-player entities like NPCs and decoy fireworks.
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting.
  • The profession books for spellgem crafting, spellscroll crafting, and outfitter crafting have all been removed.
    • You'll still see profession books again in the future, for crests, enchants, and spellshaping gems—but those aren't availablet to play with yet, and don't come until level 10+ anyhow even once they are in the game.
    • The prior method of profession books just added confusion for new players, didn't add anything that was fun that couldn't be achieved in a better way elsewhere, and generally just made crafting seem more complex than it really should have.
  • The dungeon map is now enabled by default, due to popular support.
    • Thanks to jerith for originally bringing this up.
  • The description of all of the materials now automatically includes the minimum level the chunk must be in order to find these materials.
    • For anyone curious the current level-gating that was already in place is as follows:
      • 2: Quartz Rock
      • 5: Copper Ore, Sunstone, Moonstone
      • 8: Cherry
      • 10: Iron Ore, Magma
      • 14: Plum
      • 70: Coral
    • There are currently a great many material types (earth essence, etc) which aren't yet seeded at all, but once they are being used by crafting recipes they will start being seeded into the world and chunk-level-gated at the same time. Most further unlocks coming up prior to 1.0 will probably fall in the level 10-80 range.
  • 30 blue consciousness shards are no longer seeded in the first settlement when the game is started.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for suggesting.
  • To make world map travel a little more interesting and "textured", added new macrogame location type: Vortex Pylon.
    • Cannot seed closer than 10 tiles to another pylon.
    • Cannot seed closer than 16 tiles to the 0,0 region (initial settlement).
    • If within 13 tiles of another pylon, the regions on the line between the two pylons are "blocked by vortex" (an abnormal concentration of the presence that drives normal humans insane if they spend much time away from something that can shelter them from it) and cannot be entered at all on the world map.
      • The pylon "endpoint" regions will not be blocked by this line, though in theory a pylon region could be blocked by being on a line between two other pylons. Probably not possible due to seeding distance rules though.
      • If connected to at least one other pylon it also blocks a couple other nearby regions (the ones facing away from the origin) to make it less likely that you can "skip" through the block by going through the pylon region itself.
    • Very similar to resource deposits and consciousness nodes it has a group of guarding monsters and is not actually physically present in any of the region's chunks (that may change later to actually being present). If you defeat the monsters the pylon is destroyed and no longer blocks any regions.
    • Also added a new "Destroy Pylon" strategy order that takes 100 TUs and 200 red shards. All the strategy-map orders are basically "overland spells", this is just more obviously one.
    • Note: the game now has to generate regions further out from your current world map location to make sure you can't possibly be standing on a region that will become blocked by a newly generated pylon, which may slow down moves near the "edge" of the known world a bit. If it's too much some optimization can be done.
    • A bit of the rationale behind this: we agreed with the player feedback that some kind of challenge was missing from the world map, but wanted to avoid anything that was annoying (i.e. random battles) or "cheesable" (i.e. getting sucked in and being able to warp out if you'd been in that region before, etc). If you don't like the pylons, just blow them up (what did you think all those red shards are for?) ;)
  • Fixed a bug where consciousness nodes were being seeded in hostile terrain and sometimes too close together.
  • Pablo's awesome new overlord boss battle theme now plays during fights with overlords, lending those fights a far more epic flair!

Beta 0.518 Eagle Tiers

(Released October 5, 2011)

  • Fixed an issue where previously if the game were paused, trying to warp out of the current chunk or trying to exit to the main menu would cause the game to stop responding.
    • Thanks to Baleyg, Toll, and allison for reporting.
  • Put in protection against several potential infinite loop situations that could happen on machines where the CPU speed far outstripped the hard disk speed.
    • Thanks to Armanant and jerith for reporting.
  • The game now starts out new characters with four warp potions rather than four warp scrolls.
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue where the junkyard clouds in the dynamic skies were not being set to green.
  • Added in a new Eagle enemy type which you can meet in the forest surface areas.
    • These also have their own bird nest monster type.
    • I'll leave you to discover the particulars about them both.
    • Note that they use the bat attack sound effect temporarily, but just until a permanent effect can be made for them.
  • Fixed an issue where enemies that are supposed to die when they reach the edge of the ground level chunks were instead turning around to avoid death. This applied to rhinos, skelebots, and so on. They were even jumping some before they turned around, in some cases. Fixed.
  • The movement speed of all monsters is now randomized per monster between 0.9 and 1.2 of their base rate.
    • This makes it so that monsters are less likely to stack up on one another when a bunch of them are going in the same direction, as well as simply making the overall effect of the monsters that much more organic.
  • Settlement-management: Removed the shard cost from the Upgrade Structure action. It wasn't being displayed properly, and upon reflection we don't see a need for it.
    • Thanks to Moonshine Fox for reporting that upgrade was mysteriously requiring resources it didn't say it required.
  • The way that the trees rotate and thrash around during windstorms is no longer remotely so extreme. This prevents a need to mess with their hitboxes, among other benefits (and it's simply a bit more realistic, anyhow).
    • Thanks to ambartos for reporting.
  • Trees and bushes are all now randomized a substantial amount in their size, making forests and other tree-ful areas a lot more dynamic-looking without adding any new art.
    • Thanks to jerith and Spork for suggesting.
  • Added Eagle Diver enemies, which start appearing around level 25, and then way more heavily at level 50.
    • These are basically the first general sort of "elite" monster. They are mostly like the regular eagles, but their behavior is much more threatening, they are faster, and have a bit of a stronger attack.
  • The crafting tiers have been changed from corresponding to every 5 civ levels, to instead corresponding to every 10 civ levels.
    • It was just way too fast the other way, and there was no time to even build remotely a full loadout NOW, let alone when we have lots more spells. And it really made the progression feel like a constant grind to replace your ailing inventory.
    • Thanks to Terraziel for suggesting this.
  • All old world files have had their item tiers retroactively upgraded to the new scale.
    • The way we did this was to multiply the old tier by 5, then divide it by 10, and round up to the nearest tier.
      • So this means that old tier 3 and 4 equipment is now tier 2, old 5 and 6 are both now tier 3, etc.
  • The health for the micro-bosses has been increased 4x.
    • Thanks to FallingStar for suggesting.
  • To aid with clarity, a new Target Crafting Tier is now shown in the stats menu below the XP count.
    • This lets players know what the baseline crafting tier for their current civ level is.
  • Also to aid with clarity, the base magical power of just the spell itself is now shown in the tooltips and crafting screen, in parentheses after the total damage output factoring in your character's magical prowess.
  • The cost of lower-tier spells now goes down 4x slower, whereas the cost of higher-tier spells now goes up 4x faster.
    • Thanks to Toll and FallingStar for suggesting.
  • Additionally, the "range of obsolescence" for character equipment and spells has been drastically increased. Previously your stuff would be completely obsolete and doing something like 1 damage/healing after about 10 levels. Now it takes 20 levels for things to get THAT obsolete, leading to far more time for players to work on getting better equipment without having to feel a constant time pressure to upgrade, upgrade, upgrade.
    • The other effect of this is that higher-tier spells that are gotten early now provide less insane of a bonus. There's still incentive there to get better stuff to get concentrated firepower, but it's no longer any sort of golden ticket to success.
    • Thanks to several players for inspiring this, but none more than BobTheJanitor!
  • The magic point cost of all spells have been linearly doubled.
    • Except for douse monster nest, which is now a lot cheaper than before due to its extremely lowered utility, though; now it's a more viable way to suppress monster nests in a boss room if you don't have time to kill them.
    • Also, teleport, seize, shrink, and flash of light have not been doubled, meaning that they are now the equivalent of half as expensive as it once was.
    • Thanks to FallingStar for suggesting the doubled costs of all the spells in light of the much higher available MP compared to before; this brings the game back into a more middle-ground area of balance, hopefully.
  • Another seven boss room templates have been added, courtesy of Josh.

Beta 0.517 Primary Inversion

(Released October 5, 2011)

  • Toned down the power of the ball lightning spell from 3600 to 2400. This makes it 2.4x the power of the fireball for 2.4x the cost, rather than 4.5x the power for 2.4x the cost.
    • Given that these are both the basic ranged spells in their respective elements, having them have equivalent power-for-cost is important.
    • Thanks to zebramatt for reporting.
  • In the prior version, monster health scaling was backwards by relative level. So monsters that were higher-level than you had a lot less health than those lower-tier than you.
    • Too much testing of the same-tier values on my part—whoops!
    • Thanks to Baleyg and PaxTechnomancer for reporting.
  • The attack power and cost of forest rage have both been increased slightly, making them equivalent multiples of the fireball cost.
  • Quartered the power of energy pulse and halved its cost, making it more equivalent with the fireball baseline although a little less powerful when attacking one enemy (given that it can hit multiple enemies).
    • Thanks to FallingStar for reporting.
  • Doubled the MP cost of launch rock.
  • Halved the attack power of creeping death, as it can hit multiple enemies.
  • Increased the cost of death touch by 50%.
  • Fixed an issue where the power of the various spells was being handled as if they were a tier higher than they were supposed to be; this had been substantially overpowering the player, as if they had gear from five civ levels above what they should have.
  • Made it so that the magic point cost of spells is actually scaling properly now.
    • Rather than going up linearly by tier, which was the old way of doing things, it now scales based on the tier level relative to the current tier level of the civilization.
    • Thus more powerful tiers cost more if you get them early, but do more damage; and older tiers cost a lot less but also do less damage.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting that the costs were getting unplayably high in the prior version at higher tiers.
  • Attack power bonuses for monsters were not properly working in the prior version. This mainly matters at the moment for when they were in a windstorm; their buffs were not being applied.
  • Character and monster attack powers and health values were previously not correctly applied due to some math precision issues.
    • The values were not grossly off, but two very similar proficiencies in a stat category could incorrectly yield the same result, and the final numbers of all these stats were often off by a 10% to 20% or so margin in general.
    • The magic point values, and the spell attack values, were working just fine.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting.
  • The health bars of damaged objects no longer show on the screen if you haven't actually damaged those enemies yourself and the enemy is offscreen and the enemy isn't a boss.
    • Thanks to jerith for suggesting.
  • Put in some robustness additions that allows for certain kinds of corrupt savegames to be loaded, losing only the chunk the player had been in and whatever was in that chunk, but returning them to the world map.
    • These are savegames where that chunk was already corrupt for whatever reason (such as having copied the world files to a backup before the game had saved all the data about the chunk to the disk), and previously those would make the entire world file unreadable, but now it's not remotely such a blocker.
    • Thanks to Armanant for providing such a save.

Beta 0.516 It's All Relative

(Released October 4, 2011)

  • Fixed End-Turn tooltip to note that it takes blue shards, not just shards in general.
    • Thanks to azarakus for the report.
  • Fixed an issue in the prior version where desert burrowers and decoy fireworks were invisible.
    • Thanks to mrhanman for reporting.
  • The colors of shards in consciousness shard caches in the deep were not matching what they were supposed to. Fixed.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting.
  • Fixed up the game so that when there is an invalid link to a room that does not exist, the game now creates a little "sky box room" that you fall into, rather than just crashing and dying.
    • These invalid links should never be seeding anymore anyway—that was fixed in a prior version—but for old links that were created in that fashion this now prevents the crash.
    • Thanks to Efrencecht and Vampyre for reporting.
  • Icicle leapers now jump noticeably higher than they previously did.
  • Monsters now realize when they are able to jump up a cliff to get out of a hole, and now do so.
    • This was always the intended logic, and at one point in the past this was working, but sometime in the months prior to alpha it got busted.
    • Thanks to Toll for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue with the ocean shallows sometimes having odd angled water sticking up out of itself.
    • Thanks to Kronic for reporting.
  • All of the inescapable-to-normal-monsters holes in the ground are supposed to have water at their lowest extents; this kills the monsters and lets them respawn and walk a different path, making a sort of pachinko effect that keeps caves and exterior surface tunnels interesting.
    • However, in recent versions it wasn't putting in the water when there were goodies or doors down in the water. Fixed.
      • This also keeps things more interesting for players in terms of having more water or lava (as the case may be) to avoid.
  • Except in oceans, ocean shallows, and underwater caverns, the game is now vastly less likely to put regular underground passages and goodies under the water. Holes in the wall will still potentially be in them just as much as ever.
  • Previously, entering underground buildings would cause undesirable overlap in the region map, making some nodes impossible to enter because of it. Fixed to make this now draw the underground building nodes to the right of the underground cavern nodes they came from, which makes better use of space anyhow.
    • Thanks to Tayrtahn for reporting.
  • Fixed the blur on the world map after leaving The Deep areas.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for reporting.
  • Previously, the lava flats, the deep, and the ocean shallows were sucking the player into the middle of them on the first steps into those regions, rather than the second.
    • This was apparently an intentional decision I made a while back from looking at the code, but I don't know what I was thinking.
    • Thanks to c4sc4, BobTheJanitor, and Sherlock for reporting.
  • Previously, ocean shallows could be used by clever players to jump back and forth between them and ocean tiles to get way out into the middle of the ocean relatively safely. Fixed.
  • Fixed an issue that was causing the outermost chunk of a surface region to always count as having been visited no matter what, which made it trivial to warp out of ocean tiles using this.
    • Thanks to Kemeno for reporting.
  • Settlement Management: it is now possible to execute a build action without sufficient time units (you do need at least 1 TU):
    • The resulting structure will be unfinished (and drawn half faded-out with the time units icon on top of it) and won't provide any of the benefits of the completed structure.
    • By left-clicking on an unfinished structure you can order your selected NPC to continue the construction. This also only requires 1 TU, and deducts from the remaining TUs required. Once TUs-left-to-build hits zero the building is completed and acts like a normal building.
  • Fifteen new boss room arenas have been designed by Josh and added in, really upping the variety in the interior boss fights (it well more than doubles the number of boss room templates).
  • Completely—and I mean _completely_ redid the balance of the game in terms of character and monster health, magic points, and attacks.
    • The old system did not scale well at all beyond a few levels, and arguably the difficulty curve wasn't even that great early-on.
    • Additionally, the old system would have gotten into absurd numbers for things like health once you got into the thousands of civ levels; worse, any fix to the first problem of difficulty progression would have skyrocketed these numbers into the billions or larger.
    • The new system is a lot simpler, in that everything is relative.
      • You start with a certain amount of max health, max magic points, magical attack power, and those values no longer ever fluctuate.
        • This is a pretty sharp change from your traditional RPG flow, but this game has never claimed to be an RPG and this change is needed in order to allow for game worlds to get progressively larger while still maintaining difficulty balance in a fun way throughout.
      • Enemies also have a certain amount of max health, magical/physical attack power, and so on. Their values varies based on their relative level to the civ level, however—an enemy that is lower-level than you will have correspondingly worse stats off their baseline, and an enemy that is higher-level than you will have correspondingly better stats. But the general scale of the stats doesn't increase over time. Every time you level up the world, all the enemies stats get incrementally worse down to a floor, rather than yours getting incrementally better up to infinity.
      • Likewise, your equipment goes through the exact same process as the enemies do—as your civ level goes up, your spellgems do progressively less damage down to a floor, until you craft a new one. This drop is exactly corresponding to the drop in same-level enemy health and stats, though, so you're not actually losing any ground; technically, since your stats stay the same each civ level up, you're still gaining ground on all the enemies each time you level up. But you still need new equipment every 5 levels or so to avoid losing ground against the enemies, same as it always has been.
    • Thanks very much to Armanant for bringing up the difficulty over time issues, and to many players on the forums for weighing in on this revised design.
  • All existing world files will have all living entities returned to full health.
  • When looking at the magical attack power of a spell, it now includes the attack power of the player's character to avoid there having to be a bunch of mental math that has to be done on exactly what damage would be dealt.
  • When looking at the stats of characters, the parenthetical 1-10 value is no longer shown. That is now no longer needed since the values don't scale with the civ level, and it makes these parts of the interface surprisingly cleaner and easier to understand.
  • The above changes have really required a complete rebalance of ALL enemies and spells we have so far. We're getting there on that, but there's likely to be gaps where something is trivial or insta-kills you when we don't mean it to be like that. Feedback very welcome as we go through the rebalancement phase of this change!
  • The targeting line between the player and their target is no longer affected by darkness dimming.
    • Thanks to jerith for reporting.
  • While the game is paused, hovering over entities on the screen now shows you tooltips showing the type name, name, health, physical, and magical attack powers of the entity (omitting lines where not relevant there, of course).
    • For some things, such as the minibosses and up, this is the only way to actually see the type name in the game since the name of the specific boss is generally what shows.
    • This is also a handy tool for us in terms of balancing enemies, as we can directly look at the attack powers and so on here. But longer-term this is something that will act more as a training aid, with added descriptions and so on.
    • Thanks to Admiral for suggesting this all the way back in alpha (what, two weeks ago now? Stone Age!).
  • When the game is paused, more of the animations are now halted—jumping players no longer endlessly rotate, bats no longer bob up and down helplessly, precipitation no longer falls, monster spawner smoke no longer rises, shaken lights no longer flicker, etc.
    • One thing that still DOES animate is the clouds and day/night cycle, both of which are considered external to the local chunk and are based on the global world passage of time, which cannot be paused (but which also doesn't affect a whole lot).
    • Thanks to Admiral for reporting.
  • The decoy fireworks now only last for five minutes if no monsters kill it first. You still can't attack them directly, but this keeps them from hanging around forever in your settlements.
    • Thanks to PlasmaChroma for suggesting.
  • Fixed a bug where microbosses were sometimes not dropping any shards.
  • Made Rare Commodity Tower icons draw a bit higher up to reduce confusion about which region they're in.
  • Added new macrogame location type: Consciousness Node.
    • A node is marked on the map by the icon of the color of shard that it produces.
    • Starts with guarding monsters in the same way as resource deposits, but the monsters are stronger.
    • Once the monsters are cleared away, you can use the new Link Node strategy order (the default left-click action on a region with a node and no other relevant actions that get checked first).
    • Linked nodes produce 100 of the corresponding shard per strategy turn.
      • Currently this gets put in your personal inventory (so you'll need to donate them to a settlement if you want that settlement to use them) but we're planning to move shard storage to a global stockpile and that's where they'll go then.
    • However, linked nodes also represent a more serious threat to the overlords and other mysterious antagonists of the world, and they'll start throwing rampaging monsters at you periodically (in addition to the other periodic spawns). Their retaliations will be greatly fleshed out over time, for now it's always "send in the goons".
    • There's also an Unlink Node strategy order if you find that you want to back down the rate at which those attacks are sent at you. Naturally, you'll also lose the income unless you link it again.
  • Increased the differential between region levels in terms of the attack power of enemies. As the region level goes up or down, enemies get vastly more or less effectual in that +-10 region levels range. By the time you hit about 7 region levels above your own, even the weakest enemies will pretty much one-shot you.
    • Of course, with the coming shield spells and such, and even with the existing auto-potions, the meaning of "one shot you" really isn't what it once was.
    • The differential between a level 1 chunk and a level 2 chunk are incredibly tamer now than they used to be, however. It's all been normalized, and the difference in attack powers between a civ level 1 and a region level 2 is now about 36%, rather than the previous 100% jump in attack power.

Beta 0.515

(Released October 3, 2011)

  • Fixed a crash bug in 0.514 when loading some worlds.
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting.

Beta 0.514 Previously Pernicious Particles

(Released October 3, 2011)

  • Removed obsolete dev note from grave detail text.
  • Improved ability for code to set angle of emission of particles from particle emitters.
    • This allows for various spells, such as fireball for instance, to have a narrower emission profile.
  • Shrunk the apparent size of the tidal pulse and the amoeba shots so that there is less splashing outside of the core collision box.
    • Also vastly improved their performance during this, cutting their number of draw calls down to 20% of what it was before.
  • Fixed a null exception when ending turn from a settlement with no NPCs.
    • Thanks to Tagek for the report and save.
  • Made it so that the particle effect behavior definitions are defined in an external xml file that is loaded at runtime. This xml file can be reloaded at any time by pressing Ctrl+F4. This makes it way faster to edit and tune particle effects, and makes it so that modders can actually tune more of the effects than just the raw images.
  • Fireballs and ball lightning have had their visual behavior completely reworked to be less overwhelming of the screen and to be easier able to tell where the actual projectile is.
  • The forest rage visuals have been completely redone.
  • Strategy/Settlement-Management: The morale, happiness, and time units pieces of text in the description above the NPC now have tooltips explaning the computation of those values (or the next turn's values, in the case of TUs). It's the same info as the tooltips on the NPC detail window but a bit easier to get at.
  • Fixed the tooltip for The Deep to include the same warning as lava flats and ocean tiles about getting sucked in.
    • Thanks to jerith for the report.
  • Fixed an oddity where rampaging monsters led by rhinos could spawn out in the middle of the ocean. Changed to not spawn rampaging monsters in hostile regions.
    • Thanks to martyn_van_buren for the report.
  • Fixed bug where if there was a rescuable npc in the caves of a region that has a settlement, you could try to rescue the npc but it would tell you that they were already safely in a settlement. Now the rescue should work normally.
    • Thanks to jerith for the report.
  • Creeping death has gotten the particle makeover, and is now much smaller to match it's collision box better as well as looking nicer and using half the draw calls it previously did.
  • The skelebot and NPC sniper shots have now gotten the visual upgrade/clarity/shrinkage treatment.
  • Shrunk down the energy pulse collision box a bit so that it's easier to shoot through small gaps (and possible to shoot through some passages at all.
  • Fixed up some issues with very slow-moving particle balls that would make their particles actually offset from where their collision box was. For amoeba shots against a wall, as one example, this would previously be an issue.
  • Greatly improved the death smoke visuals of the launch rock spell.
  • Shrunk the trail of launch meteor, and got that also being more efficient to render.
  • Fixed an issue with the collision profile of the ball of light not being correctly aligned with the light itself.
  • Lightning esper shots are now vastly smaller to match their collision box, as well. And correspondingly more efficient, too.
  • Completely redid the visuals for the shrink shot and seize shot.
  • The dragon breath attack from crippled dragons is now a lot more clear as to where the collision box of the fire actually is, and the fire also uses less GPU resources like many of the other effects now do.
  • Likewise on the magma blobs from the hanging traps.
  • The miasma effect from the vengeful ghosts has been visually reworked extremely heavily, making it more attractive and interesting and easier to tell the collision box on it.
    • Also, as per the request of a number of players, miasma blobs can be attacked and destroyed now, in the manner of fire breath.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for suggesting.
  • Strategy/City: changed most shard costs to use different colors than just blue:
    • Build-Structure and Upgrade-Structure now cost white shards.
    • Destroy-Object (i.e. Salvage) now costs red shards.
    • Rescue Stranded NPC now costs green shards.
    • Build Wind Shelter now costs white shards and green shards (and significantly more wood and stone).
    • Explore Region now costs yellow shards.
    • Also added 200 of each non-blue color shard to each settlement's stockpile to avoid stalling anybody's game immediately upon update.
  • Made some fundamental changes to how the particles are getting a dark underlay for an additive blending base. The result is startlingly better, especially for effects like the fireball where I decided to keep the "underlay" actually mixed in with the main particle flow itself to simulate debris.
  • Fixed a bug where the decoy fireworks had a name like you could talk to them.
    • Thanks to Kemeno for reporting.
  • Did a similar improvement to the visuals of the icicle leaper's underlay.
  • Got the heal and restore magic effects updated to the new scripted particle system, and in the process made them use about 1/3 as many draw calls and draw with a better background than before.
  • The basic melee hit effects are now slightly better, and in the new particle scripting system.
  • Revamped the visuals of Ride The Lightning as part of the transition of it to the new scripted particle system.
  • The ice bat, fire bat, and lightning esper visual effects have been tweaked as they were converted to the new particle scripting format.
  • Added in a new "Mouse Cursor Dynamically Moves Camera" settings option.
    • When this toggle is enabled (by default it is not), the mouse is able to pan the camera. The distance panned is roughly half the distance between the cursor and your character.
    • When this mode is enabled, the "Look Ahead" key changes from its normal function to instead making the camera pan further and faster based on your mouse movements.
    • Thanks to Spork for suggesting this.

Beta 0.513

(Released October 2, 2011)

  • Fixed an issue from 0.512 that could cause jumps to be stunted at certain framerates.
    • Thanks to JamesMowery for reporting.

Beta 0.512 Watertight Settlements

(Released October 2, 2011)

  • Fixed a bug with the escape menu in the previous version where the abandon character button would still draw and overlap another button in the submenus.
    • Thanks to mrhanman for the report.
  • Fixed some tooltips that were still referring to the no-longer-true "get 100 shards when you level up" rule.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for the report.
  • Removed the 999 stacking limit on inventory slots. For almost everything it simply never came into play and for the newly dropped shards it was being annoying. We may add stacking rules back in later for some items, but it's opened up for now.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for inspiring this change.
  • Settlement-Management: Now when drawing the "person" icon on top of a structure with someone assigned to it, it draws a yellow version of that icon for structures to which the highlighted npc is assigned. Hopefully this will make it easier to know what they're assigned to and what to click to un-assign them, etc.
  • Settlement Management: added new button to the left of the npc-list area (to the right of the structure-type-list area) labeled "Open Build List" if the build list is not showing or "Close Build List" if the build list is showing.
    • By default, the build list is now not shown, to let people move their mouse cursor around without a building ghost chasing it if they like.
    • Also added a new keybind "Settlement Management: Toggle Build List".
      • Pressing this while the settlement management window is open (and non of the inner detail windows are showing) will toggle the build list between open and closed.
      • Defaults to the "B" key.
    • Thanks to Toll for inspiring this change.
  • Improved the error-case handling for the 3 different types of temporary buffers (used to minimize transient heap) so that they'll still put an entry in the error log if something goes wrong but they won't keep spamming the log every single simulation step.
  • Added new keybind: "Strategy Map: Next Settlement":
    • Pressing this while the strategy map or settlement management windows are open will try to switch to the next settlement.
    • Also added similar keybind "Strategy Map: Previous Settlement".
    • Neither one has a default binding, just there if you want to use them.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for the suggestion.
  • Made the controls window fit better on 800-wide resolutions.
  • Added a step-by-step calculation explanation tooltip to the production numbers on the structure-detail-window (opened by right-clicking an actual existing structure on the settlement map).
  • Fixed an index-out-of-bounds exception in the inventory dragging code.
    • Thanks to Cyborg for the report.
  • Put in some logic to prevent serial saving of the same identical chunk over top of itself repeatedly when no sim steps have been run since the last save of that chunk.
    • This may have been causing some issues since 0.509.
    • Thanks to JamesMowery and jerith for putting us on the lookout for this sort of thing affecting OSX in the last few versions.
  • Put in some logic to prevent any chance of an infinite loop in saving the list of chunks in memory.
  • Put in a fix to the ice cross and circle of fire still being able to go through walls in some circumstances in the prior version.
    • Also put in a safety check here to prevent any remote possibility of infinite loops in the related check code for this.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting.
  • Monsters that die in water who aren't immune to water (such as those who drown in water in general) no longer grant loot drops.
    • This was something we'd planned on doing, and used to have in the game a long while ago, but just forgot to put back in there for the prior version.
    • Thanks to martyn_van_buren and GrimerX for reminding us.

Beta 0.511 I Seem To Have Dropped My Loot

(Released September 30, 2011)

  • The Escape menu now does not show the Inventories, Maps, or Abandon Character buttons when you're on the world map, because they can't work when you're not in a chunk at all.
    • Thanks to Vampyre for pointing out the do-nothingness of the Inventories sub menus while on the world map.
  • The Achievements button on the Escape menu has been temporarily removed, will be back when there's something to show there.
  • Strategy: fixed a bug where mousing over a settlement that you had not entered would say that you build a wind shelter there.
    • Thanks to orzelek for the report.
  • Strategy: fixed bug where rescuable-npcs in caves would show icons on the strategy map but would not show any info in the region tooltip or region detail window.
    • Thanks to Bossman for the report.
  • The descriptions for ball lightning and tidal pulse have been updated to note that they slide along walls.
    • Thanks to orzelek for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where a hearth guardian stone in a wind shelter chunk (not a settlement) was still letting you try to open the strategy map, which would cause errors.
    • Thanks to Buffered for the report and save.
  • Fixed bugs where the announcements or deaths of lieutenants or overlords were being filed as Turn 1 events instead of whatever turn they actually happened on.
    • Regrettably there's no way to fix these retroactively, but ones from this point on should be fine.
    • Thanks to jerith for the report.
  • Strategy/Settlement-management: Added display of Time-Unit costs to the Structure Type Detail Window (mousing over an item in the structures-you-can-build-list) and the Structure Detail Window (right-click an existing structure on the settlement map) for how much it costs to Build, Upgrade, and/or Salvage an object (fyi, only trees and boulders can be salvaged).
  • Rather than there being one kind of consciousness shard, there are now six colors of them.
    • All old consciousness shards have been converted to blue shards in the new system, and all the prior costs involving shards have been converted to blue shard costs for the time being.
    • Over time these will be used for more differentiated costs on the macro-game side.
    • When you find a cache of shards in the world, it now contains a mix of 1-2 shard colors based on the region type you're exploring. The colors correspond to where you find gems and Ilari by color, too.
  • Item pickups that have more than one kind of item in them now show the graphic that used to be the consciousness shard graphic.
    • The colored consciousness shards now use a completely different graphic.
  • When the civilization level goes up, players no longer get any consciousness shards as a part of that.
    • This was trouble to balance for multiplayer, and there's plenty of rewards for each civ level up at this point anyhow, and we have a better way of getting you more consciousness shards anyhow.
  • Previously, the "can't warp out of boss room" logic was actually being applied to warping IN to boss rooms instead of out. Fixed.
    • Thanks to jerith for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where interior boss nodes were not counting as boss nodes for a number of purposes, but including not being able to warp out of them as one example.
    • Thanks to Josh Knapp and jerith for reporting.
  • There was an issue with warping to the current chunk if the current chunk was not a surface ground level chunk (which shouldn't have been allowed anyway). Fixed it so that you can't warp to the current chunk in those circumstances.
    • Thanks to Spork for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where items would not pop out properly in water. So if you burst a gem vein underwater, you'd get nothing.
    • Thanks to Baleyg and
  • Monsters all now have drops, although they don't always drop something.
    • Standard monsters have about a 5/8 chance of dropping 1-4 consciousness shards at the moment, with the color(s) based on the monster type in question.
      • Soon, standard monsters will have a 5/10 chance of dropping those shards, and an added 1/10 chance each for dropping either a minor insta-heal or insta-mana-restore ball.
    • Boss monsters have a 100% change of dropping a much larger cache of consciousness shards:
    • Vengeful ghosts drop nothing, as that would be way too easy to farm.
      • Microbosses drop 25x whatever their base type would drop; so in the 25-100 range.
      • Minibosses drop 100-400. By the way, the actual values are randomized in a much smaller range for all these, based on the difficulty of the boss type in question.
      • Lieutenants drop 4x what their base miniboss type would drop. So this means a 400-1600 range for these.
      • For now, Overlords drop 12x what their base miniboss type would drop, but not less than 3000 shards. Later, when overlords have their own specific monster types not seen anywhere else, this will be revised. Right now the range is 3000-4800, but later it might be more like 5000 in general.
  • The items that are dropped are new "attractive pickups" which float in the air and are attracted to players that walk vaguely near them, making them convenient to collect.
  • Made not having the "Aim Keyboard-Triggered Abilities At Mouse Cursor" toggle on more aggressive about interpreting keyboard-triggered abilities as not targetted at the mouse cursor.
  • The caches of consciousness shards that you find underground, in interiors, and so on have had the following range changes:
    • Underground 3-6 becomes 45-75.
    • Surface 2-4 becomes 20-35
    • Library/study/office 8-13 becomes 75-100
    • General interior rooms 2-4 becomes 25-45;
  • The attractive items that get sucked over to you now play a more subtle sound effect when you pick them up, don't cause your character to do the pickup animation, and don't display any sort of message about what you are absorbing (you can always check your inventory, but the generalities should be pretty clear and the message spam overruns the log otherwise).
  • Fixed a bug where paid-off rampaging monsters would stick around the region they were in despite disappearing from the world map and strategy map.
    • Thanks to Yuugi for the report and save.
  • Red amoeba shots are now more visible against red or light backgrounds.
    • Thanks to Spork for reporting.
  • Icicle leapers now have a bit of shadowing behind them, making them a lot easier to see against white backgrounds.
    • Additionally, the base skelebot graphics have been altered to be higher-contrast with light backgrounds as well.
    • Thanks to JamesMowery and jerith for suggesting.
  • Improved the contrast of the actual image used for the opal dust rather than doing more with sparkles or what have you.
    • Thanks to jerith for suggesting.
  • Non-boss-room building interiors now spawn just monsters instead of any monster spawners.
    • This really changes the feel of exploring interiors compared to exteriors and undergrounds, in a way we think players will really like (based on many of them suggesting just this, partly).
    • These monsters also do not respawn, at present. No given room has that much backtracking in the main case to where that should be needed, but we can experiment more with that in the future if needed.
  • The icy bat's frost now properly follows the icy bat as they bob up and down. Same with the fire bat's fire.
  • Moved the "Switch Active Ability Bar" and "Switch Active Ability Bar (Reverse)" keybinds to the Abilities tab of the controls window.
  • Renamed the "Switch First Mouse Ability Slot" bind to "Switch Highlighted Ability Slot To Next", but did not change its function.
  • Added new "Switch Highlighted Ability Slot To Previous" bind, it does the same thing as the existing "To Next" bind but moves to the left instead of to the right.
    • No default binding.
    • Thanks to Cyborg for the suggestion.
  • Added new "Use Highlighted Ability 1" bind:
    • Tries to trigger the ability in the highlighted slot of the currently active ability bar.
    • With default keybindings this is what would fire if you clicked the left mouse button. The difference is that this binding will not automatically use mouse aiming.
    • Added corresponding binds for 2 through 9.
    • No default bindings for any of these, just there if you're a play-by-keyboard sort of person and want them.
    • Thanks to Cyborg for inspiring this addition.
  • The color difference between entered and not entered interior room icons is now a lot clearer (darker green versus the unexplored yellow).
  • Destroyed rooms now show their door as visibly damaged and with a red symbol on them, rather than showing the bomb icon.
    • This makes these doors look more realistic and the damage that's on the other side more expected. It also makes these doors easier to quickly discard as you're running around a room.
    • Thanks to huw for suggesting.
  • Ice cross and circle of fire no longer get blocked by the wooden platforms the player can create.
    • Thanks to arcee for reporting.
  • The giant shadow bats now have a bit of a narrower collision profile so that they can slide through smaller openings.
  • Fixed an issue with giant shadow bats being unable to seed quite often in the undergrounds these days, and with that also fixed some other related seeding issues with bosses in general.
    • Thanks to many players for reporting the "boss not spawning" issue. Please let us know if you see it again!

Beta 0.510

(Released September 30, 2011)

  • Fixed a null exception bug in the settlement-management interface when mousing over a resource stockpile icon.
    • Thanks to jerith for the report.
  • Messages are now shown when you fail to put on a suit or turn into a bat, explaining why you can't do the thing in question (usually already having a suit on or being transmogrified, but in the case of being a skelebot you can't put on suits since they are too small).
  • You are now allowed to warp to the same chunk you are already in, when that chunk exits to the world map. This way when you are down in surface tunnels you can quickly get to the exit of this chunk.
  • When you are in a boss room, you can no longer use warp scrolls directly from there; instead the following message is shown:
    • The power of the boss prevents you from warping out of here—run for the exit and warp away from the other side if you wish!
  • Bats now bob up and down more in the air, making them easier to see and making it stop looking strange when they are near the edge of the ground.
    • Thanks to Efrencecht for reporting the strangeness.
  • Strategy/Settlement-management: Fixed bug where the next-settlement and previous-settlement buttons were not being consistently disabled when detail windows were open (and thus supposed to be blocking input to the rest of the interface).
    • Thanks to jerith for the report.
  • The player bat now draws in front of the ground in such a way that it's no longer possible to lose sight of your bat behind the grass.
    • Thanks to kerzain for reporting.
  • The granularity of the way that the minimap is revealed has been decreased so that generally it is now revealed in larger pieces.
  • Fixed an issue in the last version where settlements could have guardian stones overlapping workbenches, and things of that nature.
    • Thanks to Cougar_DK for reporting.
  • Ride The Lightning now has a 2 second casting speed instead of 1 second, to prevent being able to fly across the sky.
    • Additionally, it is no longer sped up or slowed down by the magical casting speed of the character, making this consistent across all characters.
    • Thanks to kerzain for reporting.
  • Monster spawners now have 68% of the health that they previously did, making them not such a pain to actually kill.
    • Thanks to a number of players for this feedback.

Beta 0.509 Walls? What Walls?

(Released September 30, 2011)

  • Fixed some bugs where mouse-aiming was overriding the targeting of keyboard abilities even with the aim-keyboard-abilities-at-mouse-cursor toggle turned off.
  • Strategy/Settlement-management: Converted intra-turn "time management" for NPCs from "one action per turn and one workplace assignment" (and one residence assignment, but it's not really related to all this) to:
    • At the beginning of each turn an NPC's Time Units is increased by their current morale value.
    • If they have an assigned workplace, they only gain half as many Time Units.
    • Each action has a Time Unit cost, a few examples:
      • Scouting is currently 20/tile, or 10/tile for NPCs with the Explorer trait.
        • Note that now scouting only "charges" you for the number of tiles you actually reveal (this is one of the reasons we like TUs better than has-acted/has-not-acted).
      • Building a wind shelter costs 200 TU, so an NPC might theoretically have to "save up" for a few turns without doing any actions, particularly if they're working a farm or whatever.
      • Constructing/Upgrading a building depends on the building (wells and houses are cheap, lumber mills take a lot of TU... later we hope to have you be able to start a building without full TU and build it in stages with multiple npcs and/or multiple turns).
      • "Salvaging" a tree takes 50 TU.
      • "Salvaging" a boulder takes 100 TU.
    • Instead of moving to the next non-acted NPC in the list after taking an action, it will only move on if the NPC is down to a non-useful (lower-than-scouting-cost) number of TUs. There's a number of related interface changes like this one, really.
    • If you mouse-over the Time Units listing in the NPC detail window (right click an NPC portrait to get to that) it will explain how many TUs it projects the NPC will have at the beginning of next turn. This can be inaccurate if something during the end-turn process changes the NPC's morale (like a food shortage).
    • We're sure this all needs a ton more balancing, but it's at least ready for testing at this stage, have fun!
  • Fixed an issue where the ladders down into the underground were drawing behind other game entities sometimes.
  • Fixed an issue where the ladders down into the underground were sometimes drawing on floating islands in the sky, which made no sense. Now they always are on the lowest area of ground if possible.
    • Thanks to Eduardo X and mrhanman for reporting.
  • Fixed an issue where the minimap would blink fully revealed right before entering a newly-created chunk.
    • Thanks to mrhanman, dumpsterKEEPER, and Procyon for reporting.
  • Bats are no longer able to fly through walls/floors. That goes for the giant shadow ones and all the other kinds of bats.
    • This prevents the bats from getting so crazy inside maze rooms and interiors and caves in general, and allows players to use the cave terrain to fight the shadow bat minibosses more strategically.
  • Improved the way that collision detection is handled on flying enemies with the terrain and other solid objects. Both spells and enemies and player bats should all slide along the terrain now; all of the above were getting stuck sometimes depending on their movement angle, previously.
    • Thanks to mrhanman, Admiral, and AragonLA for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where the guardian stones would only refresh you to 4 warp potions if you had fewer than 2 warp potions.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting.
  • Vastly improved the melee attack range logic; previously it was possible for melee enemies to hit you through walls or other solid obstacles at times.
  • After a lot of thought and ongoing testing, decided to make it so that spells like ice cross and ring of fire and so on can no longer pass through walls. It just seemed like a bug to players, and it made dwarf skelebots extra annoying, and it made it really easy to cheese certain bosses (giant skelebot, for instance) in certain boss room templates.
    • One reason that these were originally designed to pass through walls was to have a defense against bats and other future enemies that might be able to go through walls. But now that bats can no longer go through walls (that was also problematic), any desire for spells that can go through walls also evaporates.
  • Fixed an issue where ball lightning and energy pulse and similar could get caught in the wall if you were firing away from the wall with your back to it.
    • Thanks to Admiral for reporting.
  • In addition to the speed scaling that happens based on the relative region level, monster SPELLS (not monsters themselves) now have the following modifiers based on the action difficulty:
    • Featherweight: 0.4x;
    • Apprentice: 0.6x;
    • Hero (the default): 0.8x;
    • Master Hero: 1x;
    • The Chosen One: 1.2x;
    • This makes it so that spells can be substantially easier to dodge depending on the settings.
  • Simplified tracking of "chunks in memory", hopefully this will at least reduce the number of "loot or bosses respawned when I left and came back"-type bugs, if not eliminate them altogether.
    • Please let us know if you see another one of those in 0.509!
  • Ride The Lightning now has a 1 second cooldown instead of 3 seconds.
    • Until recent versions apparently a bug was preventing the 3 seconds from kicking in, but 3 seconds is too long.
    • Thanks to FallingStar for reporting.
  • Magic Potions/scrolls now have a new cooldown type of Magic Restoration instead of Logistical. Their cooldown time has also been increased from 10s to 15s.
    • This keeps the magic potions from interfering with other logistical spells for long periods, but also makes it impossible to spam magic restoration (and thus major offensive spells).
  • Ambient Cold and Heat damage is now prevented by the presence of the ilari. So NPCs no longer have to put on snowsuits in ice age settlements, and if a player chooses a non-ice-age character they no longer take damage and die in the settlement itself.

Beta 0.508

(Released September 29, 2011)

  • The guardian stones now refresh you back up to 4 warp scrolls rather than 2.
    • Thanks to yuastnav and zebramatt for suggesting.
  • There is now a new tip in the adviser guardian stone's list of tips, right after the first 5 that it makes you read. This new tip says "I've told you really all you need to know for now -- but I have more advice for you, so do come back later!"
    • The idea being that we don't want people to feel like they have to read 35 tips before they do anything.
  • Fixed a crash bug that could occur when getting lost in the lava flats.
  • Dwarf Skelebots no longer cause knockback with their attacks.
    • Thanks to orzelek for suggesting.
  • The knockback from the skelebot giant is now about 50% as potent.
    • Thanks to BobTheJanitor for suggesting.
  • A tip is now shown to the player when they try to use a warp scroll from their ability bar:
    • Tip: to use a warp scroll, open the region map and choose the dungeon you want to warp into. Then choose the node in the dungeon that you want to warp to. It must be a node you have already visited, but you can go back to anywhere you've already been in the current region.
  • Warp potions have now been added. These are identical to warp scrolls, but cannot be crafted. Instead you gain these as a gift from the local illari instead of warp scrolls.
    • The benefit of this is that you can now craft "extra" warp scrolls to have on hand without that impacting your ability to get the freebies refreshed every time you visit town.
    • There is also now a 1% chance of finding these warp potions as you explore through buildings.
    • Thanks to BobTheJanitor for suggesting.
  • Warp Scrolls can now be dropped again, but Warp Potions now cannot.
  • Fixed a typo in the name of Log Cabin Lodge.
    • Thanks to mithrandi for reporting.
  • The power of healing potions/scrolls has been quadrupled. The power of magic restoration potions/scrolls has been doubled.
  • Fixed a bug that was causing monsters that were your same level to be 0.6 the speed that they should have been.
    • Thanks to Baleyg for reporting.
  • Monster nests no longer respawn except in boss rooms. So you can now permanently clear an area of monsters if you wish.
    • Thanks to Achillies for bringing this up, and many other players for weighing in.
  • Going along with the above, monsters themselves are now saved when the chunk is saved. So rather than all the monsters being cleared and then freshly respawning when you come back into a chunk, the monsters are where you left them.
  • Overlord keeps and evil outposts now have their own awesome music tracks that they play, rather than using more generalized interior soundtracks for their region.

Beta 0.507 Skelebot Goal Kick

(Released September 29, 2011)

  • Fixed a crash that players could get on some instances with chunks.
    • Thanks to leb0fh for reporting.

Beta 0.506

(Released September 29, 2011)

  • The maximum movement rate of giant red amoeba shots has been doubled, and the time to live (TTL) of their shots has been halved.
  • Similarly, for the giant blue amoebas, their shots have had their TTL halved, but in this case their max speed and their acceleration have been doubled.
    • Thanks to Tayrtahn for suggesting.
  • Put in an extra check that should help prevent situations where a chunk is re-loaded from disk before its last state has actually been written to disk.
  • Fixed minor typo in rampaging monsters description.
    • Thanks to mrhanman for reporting.
  • In the prior version there was a bug where only the giant skelebot melee attacks would do any damage to you (out of all the various monster melee attacks). Fixed.
    • Thanks to BobTheJanitor, Toll, Kemeno, arcee, PaxTechnomancer, Tayrtahn, SNAFU, Moonshine Fox, and Nenad for reporting.
  • Fixed a longstanding bug where low-jump could accidentally be triggered by pressing the down key before a jump, rather than after.
    • Thanks to BobTheJanitor for providing the method for finally finding this one, and to Lars Bull for the initial report, and to many other players for the report.
  • When you drop items out of your inventory, it now drops the entire stack you are dragging rather than just one item from the stack.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for suggesting.
  • Put in logic to prevent Unity 3D from suiciding if it fails to take a screenshot for some reason.
    • Thanks to leb0fh for reporting.
  • Mouse buttons beyond the left and right mouse button are no longer disabled by having your cursor over HUD elements. The left and right mouse buttons are, because they actually have alternate functions in those windows; but that's not true of the other mouse buttons, and so we now let them continue to function as normal.
    • Thanks to OpalMonkey for reporting.
  • The "Left Mouse <=> Right Mouse" was previously working in most of the GUI, but not in the inventory bar or in actual gameplay. Now it works everywhere that we've been able to think to test. If you find any more places where it doesn't work, please let us know!
    • Thanks to RedSeraph for reporting.

Beta 0.505

(Released September 28, 2011)

  • Gem veins, quartz outcrops, and the like now all draw in the foreground, so that the player and enemies walk behind them and so that they are never hidden behind mushrooms or whatever else.
    • Gem veins in particular now also emit a low-level light source, making them even more obvious.
    • Thanks to dumpsterKEEPER for suggesting.
  • Dropped items (gem dust, etc) now have a bit of a sparkle to them to make them easier to see.
    • Thanks to a number of players for suggesting.
  • Previously there was a bug with the most recent log message getting cropped if you had more than 200 messages, rather than the oldest message being cropped. Fixed.
    • Thanks to Toll for reporting.
  • When the gem vein has been cleared out of an underground gem vein room, and you are in that room, it will now change the color of that room on the dungeon map to the regular underground color, and call it a former gem vein node instead of a gem vein node. That way you can actually tell where you've been.
    • Thanks to BobTheJanitor for suggesting.
  • The neutral Ilari sites on the dungeon map now show up with a blue node rather than yellow, so you can tell them apart from the gem veins at a glance.
    • Thanks to Toll for suggesting.
  • The shots from the giant amoebas and giant red amoebas now live for 10 seconds instead fof 2, making them not trivial to kite from an extreme distance.
    • They also will now fire at you from a much further distance than before.
  • The skelebot giants also will now fire at you from vastly further away now.
    • And now when the skelebot giants hit you at melee range, not only do they knock you back, they send you really flying for several screens, and then shoot at you more with their fireballs.
  • The skelebot dwarves have had their movement speed and acceleration both halved.
  • The way that knockback is calculated is now a lot more accurate, and thus works smoothly with knockbacks that are extremely long-range like the skelebot giant. Before it was very jolt-y and only good for very short knockback.
  • Fixed a bug where the higher amount of damage from the spell component of a player bat attack was still being applied.
    • Thanks to Toll for reporting.
  • Fixed a typo in the tidal pulse spell description, and another in the transmogrify into bat description.
    • Thanks to jerith for reporting.
  • Brought back functionality where the game version is shown in the upper left when the in-game escape menu is visible.
    • Thanks to Toll for suggesting.
  • It is now possible to use either/or of the custom and OS mouse cursors. The default is just to the OS cursor now. This can be controlled in the first tab of the settings window.
    • Thanks to GrimerX, mrhanman, huw, and other players for suggesting.
  • When a chunk is touched at all, such as each frame during a fade-out, the game now resets its seconds to keep alive.
    • This should hopefully solve the last of the issues with rooms that you can exit and return to and see things reset.
    • Thanks to Vampyre and Bossman for reporting.
  • Put in code that will prevent a possible crash due to garbage collector suicide when custom textures are being created in memory after a long time playing in one session.
    • Thanks to orzelek for reporting.
  • Put in some logic to prevent a crash when the OS says that access is denied on saving the world file. Now it simply shows a warning message to the player and tries again later.
    • Thanks to FallingStar reporting this happening sometimes on certain Windows 7 setups.
  • Instead of showing a glowing border around enemies that are targeted with a the direct keyboard targeting controls—which wasted a lot of RAM on the extra textures and also causes some hitching with really large enemies—the game now instead draws a thin, color-pulsing line to the target. This is actually a lot more clear in the first place.
    • Thanks to AragonLA for reporting.
  • Bosses and vengeful ghosts can now be targeted using the direct keyboard targeting even if they are offscreen at the time.
  • Non-player entities no longer draw as moving on the world map. This again keeps their memory footprint lower with regard to the colored outlines that we're drawing around them; and it makes the players a lot more noticeable, too, by contrast.
  • Fixed an issue where "overflow" vents were being seeded from destroyed rooms to other destroyed rooms, and creating the "vents to nowhere" that would bug out on players.
    • Thanks to a ton of players for reporting this.

Beta 0.504 Multicolored Offense

(Released September 28, 2011)

  • Really revamped what happens under the hood with your character as you transition between chunks (going through doors, etc). Previously you could wind up falling before or after going through a door, or even getting hit by monsters or acid water or whatever during the brief period of paralysis that you'd have while the game was fading in and out.
    • Now it freezes you and makes you invincible during that period, in a way that will be multiplayer-safe, and thus the overall feel is much better.
    • There is also now no longer a 0.6 second delay before you can move after going through doors and such. Now you can move as soon as the fade-in has finished. You could already cast spells that soon, so the disconnect was jarring anyhow—old logic, really. The issues that movement-delay was originally fixing are now fixed by the fade-ins and this freeze logic.
    • It's possible this will introduce some new issues (this is always the risk with any central change like this), so we'll be doing a release during the middle of the day today to make sure we're around to catch any backwash from this. But so far it seems clean!
    • Thanks to Lars Bull for reporting the issues related to this.
  • Fixed a number of typos of "keyboard."
    • Thanks to arcee for reporting.
  • The health bar is no longer shown over the little fire that is there when the player dies (it was showing at full health, to boot, which was even more confusing).
    • Thanks to Admiral for reporting this.
  • Fixed bug where it was still possible to multi-generate a chunk the first time it was requested.
  • The monster movement speed scales have been altered as follows (based on the differential between their level and yours—with them moving slower the more overpowered you are against them):
    • <= -3: 0.3 becomes 0.8
    • -2: 0.4 becomes 0.9
    • -1: 0.5 becomes 0.95
    • 0: 0.6 becomes 1
    • 1: 0.8 becomes 1.1
    • 2: 1 becomes 1.2
    • 3: 1.2 becomes 1.3
    • 4: 1.2 becomes 1.5
    • 5: 1.2 becomes 1.75
    • >= 6: 1.2 becomes 2
    • The difficulty of monsters has been altered in other ways with the difficulty level settings and such anyhow, and so the original need to slow everything down isn't there as much.
    • And related to that, the framerates for the animations of the monsters simply aren't geared to look good below 1.0 speed, so we don't want players playing with those low speeds so much as it winds up looking jerky and bad when there's no good reason for that.
    • And lastly, when you play way up in region levels (six or more), the monsters are really a lot faster now, which adds to the challenge for players who are that good. As someone who always liked to play Mario 2 in double-speed, that sort of thing is neat to have as an option.
    • Thanks to GrimerX for inspiring this change.
  • Warp scrolls can no longer be dropped, since doing so would allow for various infinite warp scroll exploits with guardian stones.
    • Thanks to Misery for reporting.
  • Douse Monster Nest and Ball Of Light spells now leave a light blue blip on the minimap.
    • This lets players leave a trail for themselves with balls of light, and it lets them see when monster nest dousings expire (presuming they use them at all now, since monster nests can also just be destroyed—though dousings persist past chunk unloads and reloads, unlike killing a monster nest).
    • Thanks to wigglestick for suggesting.
  • Transmogrify into bat rebalance:
    • Player bats are now resistant to cold damage, but still not heat damage.
    • Player bats previously were supposedly taking more damage from enemies, but that wasn't ever fully implemented (looks like I got distracted before finishing that). All mention of that has now been removed, as I don't think it would have been fun anyway.
    • Player bats now only have 5% as much magical attack strength as normal, however.
      • This applies not just to their base magical attack value, but actually the attack power of the spells they use, too (those two components are generally added together).
    • Thanks to QuantumGoblin for originally bringing this up, and a variety of players for weighing in.
  • When using healing items or mana-restoration items, the magical attack value of the character was previously being included, which was a problem for a lot of reasons.
    • Now it's just the base power of the item itself, which means that the effectiveness of these items is character-agnostic, which is a good thing so that you don't have to choose a good offensive character just to be able to heal.
    • Additionally, mana-restoration stuff had some really outdated logic that was tripling its effectiveness invisibly and behind the scenes. Now it does what it says on the tin, too.
    • The base effectiveness of tier 1 mana-restoration has been bumped up from 400 to 600 to compensate for these other changes.
    • Thanks to Toll for reporting.
  • When healing potions are auto-applied, the logic for which one it chooses (if any) is now necessarily more complex.
    • At each step, it tries to find the lowest-tier health potion or health scroll that will fill the criteria, still preferring potions over scrolls if there are two of the same tier.
    • Step 1: If there are any potions/scrolls that will restore you to 3/4 health or greater, it chooses the lowest-tier one that will do so.
    • Step 2: If step 1 came up with nothing, then it looks for something to get you to 1/2 health or greater.
    • Step 3: If step 2 came up with nothing, then it looks for something to get you to 1/4 health or greater.
    • Step 4: If step 3 came up with nothing, then it looks for something to get you to 1 health or greater (hey, at least you'd be alive).
    • If none of the four steps come up with anything, then you're just plain dead and it doesn't waste a healing item.
  • Settlement-management: added new "Boulder" obstacle type. Basically a copy of the Tree obstacle type except:
    • Different graphics (which are placeholder, please note).
    • Gives 10 Granite instead of 10 Cedar Logs when destroyed.
    • Seeds in 1/4 the locations that would previously have been trees.
      • This is retroactive (1/4 of trees in settlement maps from old versions will mysteriously become very rock-like in this version).
  • Previously, all of the offensive spells shared one cooldown type. This really devalued having multiple offensive spells to use in a short-term succession.
    • Now the offensive spells are broken out by the six colors—so color of spells will be an ongoing consideration when you are making combos of spells to use against enemies; you can't easily combo two offensive spells of the same color, but you can combo ones cross-color.
    • Thanks to MaxAstro for pointing this out.
  • Decreased the standard global spell cooldown from 0.7 seconds to 0.5 seconds.
  • Fixed a crash bug that could happen in rare circumstances (about 5% of the time at absolute most) if you died while running.
    • Thanks to kerzain for reporting.
  • Fixed up all the destroyed room templates to be taller and thus not trap players who are neutral skelebots or similar.
  • Put in some logic to prevent a crash when collision checks apparently were trying to run in an invalid chunk.
    • Thanks to Vampyre for reporting.

Beta 0.503

(Released September 27, 2011)

  • Put in a fix to reduce or remove the mouse lag depending on the game setup. Doesn't seem to fully reduce it on OSX for me, but for windows it keeps the cursor underlay and the cursor at 1:1 movement. And it's better on OSX. Unity has two different mouse subsystems, and instead of just using the GUI one now we're using both in conjunction for setting the mouse coordinate that the game actually uses for spells, etc. This is what AI War and Tidalis do, not sure why we didn't do that here before.
  • Fixed a new crash issue from the prior version relating to killing guarding bosses and similar quasi-NPCs.
    • Thanks to GrimerX and mrhanman for reporting.

Beta 0.502 Smashed Spawners

(Released September 27, 2011)

  • Fixed bug where guardian stones were... well, apparently eating food, sometimes. We're going to just try to forget about this one.
  • Fixed bug where an npc dying would not actually remove them from the settlement list properly and they'd keep eating food and keep their previous residence and work assignments. Nevermind sick days, apparently you can't even call in dead on Environ.
    • This should also work retroactively with old worlds.
    • Thanks to arcee and others for reporting this.
  • Fixed bug where dead NPCs would keep showing back up in the strategy/settlement-management layers after save/load.
    • This should also work retroactively with old worlds, so if your agricultural economy is largely based on ghost labor you'll have some adjusting to do.
    • Thanks to whoever reported this, we can't find it in mantis so it was probably during the earlier part of the alpha.
  • Fixed a null-exception that could occur when dropping items (sometimes the drop would be caused inadvertently, and then hit this bug).
    • Thanks to kerzain for the report.
  • Fixed alignment of the you-cannot-scout-that-region notice on the strategy map to not go off the top of the screen.
    • Thanks to Admiral for the report.
  • Fixed a crash bug when clicking Buy License in the demo.
    • Thanks to Bossman for reporting.
  • Now when you unlock a new tech it is announced in the chat log with the name of the recipe, the name of the profession (workbench), and the ingredients in the recipe.
    • Thanks to Admiral for inspiring this.
  • Fixed an exception that could occur when walking across multiple hostile world map tiles.
    • Thanks to Kemeno for reporting.
  • Fixed a couple of issues with the key binding screen:
    • Some general stickiness that was not intended with it staying in selection mode for a key even after you chose the key.
    • The mouse button binding was just blinking past your selection and not actually keeping it.
    • Thanks to kingisaaclinksr for reporting.
  • Put in some safety garbage-collection calls for just before the save-world-metadata, save-all-region-metadata, save-specific-region-interior-metadata, and save-chunk operations, if the managed heap is over certain thresholds at the time. Hopefully this will prevent out-of-memory crashes due to the garbage collector being depressed and deciding that it'd be better to just let it happen.
    • Thanks to c4sc4 for the report and save.
  • Fixed a super rare crash bug that could occur when loading a chunk from disk.
    • Thanks to mithrandi for reporting.
  • Changed a bunch of resource and resource-gathering-related tooltips to hopefully clarify how to use the deposits visible on the world map.
  • Fixed a bug where the "previous structure type" and "next structure type" buttons on the settlement-management interface were shifting around based on which structure type was currently selected.
    • Thanks to Toll for the report.
  • Fixed bug where the Explorer trait was having no effect on scouting radius.
    • Thanks to shinseitom for the report.
  • Added "Movement-Directed Keyboard Aiming" toggle to Game tab of Settings window.
    • When this toggle is enabled (by default it is not), and the "Aim Keyboard-Triggered Abilities At Mouse Cursor" toggle is disabled, and the keyboard reticule is disabled or inactive, then all your keyboard-triggered abilities will be aimed in the direction indicated by your movement keys. If you're not holding any direction keys down the default direction is straight ahead according to your facing.
    • If you're not clear on what this does, just give it a shot.
    • Thanks to Cyborg for the suggestion.
  • Fixed several collision bugs relating to fire touch in particular, but really improving the collision of any spells that explode or pierce when touching other stuff.
    • It's possible that this might also have fixed that unintended splash damage thing with the amoeba shots, but I've not tested that. Feedback on that would be great!
    • Thanks to Lars Bull for reporting.
  • Made it so that monster spawners can now be attacked by spells that hurt the background tiles, such as fire touch, energy pulse, ice cross, etc.
    • These have a huge amount of health, however, so with fire touch it would take like 30+ hits to kill an equal-level monster nest. Not done with this change yet, more coming below before tonight's release!
    • Thanks to a huge, huge number of players for suggesting that monster spawners being kill-able would be more fun.
  • The "Just entered chunk invincibility" effect is now less subtle and more interestingly colored. This makes it more obvious where your character is when you start, and more obvious when you do and do not have the invincibility happening to you.
  • The flame that shows after your character has died is no longer able to receive the just-entered-chunk invincibility.
  • After leaving a chunk in the game, the chunk gets removed from memory after about ten seconds. This is not new—it's when you see all the monsters that have spawned get reset, and so on. Now the following also happens:
    • All bosses, vengeful ghosts, and monster spawners get returned to full health.
      • This is to prevent various ways of "cheesing" high level bosses by throwing characters into the meat grinder, using warp scrolls cheaply, or otherwise. It also makes each boss fight something you have to win in a single stretch, rather than something you can whittle down over many return visits, which we prefer.
      • Thanks to Toll for reporting a specific exploit that hurried us to change this.
    • Any missing monsters nests that were previously destroyed are loaded back in. This is to prevent the game from getting boringly empty if you revisit areas you have already been, but while you are in an area you can still clear out the monster nests thanks to the recent changes.
      • As an added twist, the locations of these nests will be completely randomly added back in. They might cluster with other nests, or go to completely new locations, or be kind of where they were before. This makes for a much interesting return visit if you have some reason to make a return visit (such as a boss you failed to defeat, etc).
      • Thanks to several players for suggesting this.
  • When you enter a chunk, you no longer get any invincibility added to yourself if you were in that chunk within the last ten seconds. This prevents abuse of running into and out of chunks to regain invincibility and attack bosses from that cover, for instance. And given that within that 10 second window most likely nothing should have moved within the room you left (multiplayer aside), the invincibility really isn't needed, anyway.
    • Assuming that you do make a mistake and exit a fight with a boss, you can either go back in inside the 10 second limit and pick up right whre you left off; or you can wait at least 10 second, heal up and do anything else you want to do, and then restart the boss fight with full invincibility.
    • Thanks again to Toll for the exploit that also required this change.
  • Giant Shadow Bats, Giant Amoebas (both kinds), and dragon breath are all now immune to knockback from player spells. That was making it too easy.
    • Thanks to Toll for reporting.
  • Improved the tooltip on Fire Touch to include more wording to make it clear to use them on gem veins.
    • Thanks to many players for suggesting this.
  • Added a powerful new death touch spell that can be crafted.
    • Very strong touch-range spell. Extremely useful for destroying or harvesting background entities like monster spawners, gem veins, trees, and other resource deposits.
    • Thanks to Itchykobu, Procyon, and Toll for suggesting.
  • Made the deploy-item abilities (platforms, bear traps, etc) ignore direct-targeting ("tab-targeting") and the new movement-directed targeting since all that generally accomplished was making it impossible to use those without the mouse, etc.
    • Thanks to Admiral for the report.
  • Fixed a bug that's been around since before alpha where while you were fading from one chunk to another chunk, the destination chunk might get loaded from disk (or generated from scratch!) every single processing frame because it wasn't considered "pinned" by the game unless a player entity was in it and was forgetting about them. Now the chunk is considered pinned for a certain number of seconds after it was created (from disk or from scratch) in memory or since the last frame a player was in that chunk, whichever is later.
    • This was likely the cause of various issues, but the multiple boss notifications spam was one of them and there were a number of others that this likely solves.
    • Thanks to Toll for the report and save that finally put us on the trail of this one.
  • The world map generation algorithm has been improved so that you are always now guaranteed at least one non-ocean region of levels 1-1000 in your world. Previously it was often skipping 11-19, as an example.
    • This will take effect for existing worlds as well, but you will most likely have a "crust" of higher-level regions before you get back to the missing lower-level regions on the other side of them, if you were having missing lower-level regions.
    • Thanks to eRe4s3r, Kemeno, Kronic, Toll, GabrielKronos, orzelek, brianc, and probably others for reporting.
  • Added KeyBind "Switch Active Ability Bar (Reverse)" (Game tab of the Controls window).
    • Switches to the previous ability bar.
    • Has no default binding, it's just here for folks who want it enough to pick a key for it.
    • Thanks to Cyborg for the suggestion.
  • Added in a custom mouse pointer that gets displayed under the regular mouse cursor. This adds to the contrast of where you'll be firing, especially in very white background areas, which can make aiming easier while still keeping the fluid speed of the OS cursor at any framerate, with vsync, etc.
    • For OSX players where the game is actually detecting their cursor in the wrong place, too, this underlay cursor should be reflecting the wrong location rather than the right one, which will aid in finding and fixing that bug.
  • Put in a change to hopefully circumvent an odd bug in Unity OSX where if you hit a keyboard key when the trackpad isn't actively moving, the Y coordinates of the mouse would mysteriously flip negative. This only manifests in the compiled version of AVWW, not in the unity editor, which is why we never saw this until now.
    • This seems to fix all of the OSX mouse-related bugs, but please let us know if you see anything else with it (you'll be able to tell because the little custom cursor won't be under your mouse cursor like normal).
    • Thanks to oobleckthegreen, Admiral, RedSeraph, JaguarUSF, Sherlock, and martyn_van_buren for reporting.
  • Added the "Left Mouse <=>; Right Mouse" keybind from AI War and Tidalis.
    • While this key is held, all Left clicks are treated as Right clicks, and vice versa. Very helpful for folks with one-button mice. It automatically is bound to the left apple key on OSX.
    • Thanks for RedSeraph for suggesting we bring this over.

Beta 0.501

(Released September 26, 2011)

  • Disabled memory archives since both the interface and the underlying story system need significant redesign.
    • Memory crystals are still being seeded in Rare Commodity Towers, but have a note about not being useful in their tooltip.
  • Fixed a typo in the gem vein descriptions.
  • Strategy Layer: The rescue-stranded-NPC action now requires that the settlement to which they would be moved have at least a net food production of 40, to help prevent players from getting into food consumption holes that can take many turns to get back out of.
    • As a result, the rescue-stranded-NPC action is now available at level 6 instead of level 4, because before level 4 there's no way to actually manage a settlement's food production (food consumption doesn't actually happen before level 6, but you'd still be in a tricky situation if you'd invited tons of npcs already).
    • Thanks to Toll and others for reporting the food-consumption vicious cycles that were happening.
  • Fixed a bug where the rescuable-NPC icon was being drawn on regions and in region tooltips/detail-windows before it was possible to actually execute a rescue order.
  • Fixed a bug where the rescuable-NPC icon would draw on the region but not the details.
    • Thanks to GrimerX for the report.
  • Crafting: if your inventory already contains some of the item that would result from the currently selected recipe, the number you're holding (broken out into 3 numbers: how many of the same tier, how many of a lower tier, and how many of a higher tier; unless it's an item with no tier in which case it just shows one number) is displayed to the right of the big result card.
    • Thanks to Admiral and others for reminding us of the need to know if they're about to duplicate a spellgem, etc.

Previous Release Notes

Valley 1:Pre-Beta Release Notes