AI War - Current Post-7.000 Beta

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Patch notes for game version 8.001 and up can be found at Current Post 8.000 Beta.

Contents

Official 8.000 Release!

(Released August, 17th, 2014)

AI War's run from 7.0 to 8.0 took a long break during our development of The Last Federation, but still contained over 60 new releases in 425 days. Thanks to player feedback (some new, some from years ago) the game is now better than ever.

Biggest on the radar is the addition of the new "hacking" mechanic which gives the player several abilities which can be extremely useful but also quite risky. Hack wisely, and you can turn defeat into victory. Hack foolishly, and you can turn humanity into hamburger. The idea came out of long discussions with players on improving the relationship between metal and crystal. Those two mechanics had become far too similar, and ultimately the idea of merging them in favor a new radically-different mechanic found a lot of support from the community.

"Salvage" is another major new mechanic based on years of community feedback. Basically if you lost your whole fleet in an attack it could take a long time to rebuild but often there wasn't much actual danger. In a game where 8 hours is a "short" campaign, players don't want to be stuck spending real "wall-clock" time without much actual "game" happening. So salvage allows the AI to harvest the remains of your ships lost in its territory to build a "reprisal" force that threatens you after a fleet-wipe, and allows you to harvest the remains of AI ships lost in your territory to accelerate your rebuilding. This led to a somewhat bumpy ride balance-wise but it's shaken out pretty well by now and has significantly improved enjoyment of the game.

Champions have also been the subject of quite a bit of player feedback since they were introduced in the fourth expansion. Some people really liked them, some people really did not. One of the biggest issues was how the nebula scenarios (the main way you could improve champions) were so disconnected from the rest of the game. So we've added an optional alternate way to improve your Champion units that's much more aligned with playing normally. There's probably more to be done on this topic, but what's been done thus far has helped.

"If anyone beats difficulty 10, that's a bug" is one of our old jokes with the community. Actually, we laugh when we say it but we're not joking. Several players have managed to beat Diff 10 over the years and the refinements to prevent this (without being too heavy-handed) have continued. Several AI improvements were made for 8.0, especially it's pushing an advantage during a large-scale attack. Balance dials have also been cranked to even-more-painful levels, and as of this writing there are no confirmed reports of a "normal" diff 10 win since the last round of related changes. The gauntlet's right there on the ground, folks.

Player feedback (and our own devious minds) prompted tons of other changes in 8.0 (counter-attack posts being made optional comes to mind, and many turret caps becoming per-planet), but this account has to stop somewhere. Oh, and let's not forget the engine upgrade and the addition of linux support :)

Have fun!

- Keith LaMothe, Designer and Programmer of v8.0 and Destroyer of Worlds

Prerelease 7.062

(Released August 12th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug in the prior version where drag-select boxes and health bars were not visible in far zoom.
    • Thanks to Fleet Unity, Cinth, death2cupbots, LaGrange, Kaleopan, and White Tofu for reporting.

Prerelease 7.061

(Released August 11th, 2014)

  • Improved the point at which the little junk debris starts disappearing in far zoom, since it is barely visible at that stage and since it then also causes more of a performance hit to draw something that you can't really see, anyway. This isn't a big improvement on far zoom performance-wise, but it's nice for older graphics cards.
  • AI War now has a settings option for showing the current FPS in the chat log just like our later games do.
  • Put in a fix that at last seems to fix the chat textbox highlighting issue.
  • Updated a few bits of unity 3D project-level settings for the game to match our later games better. Hopefully this may resolve some of the compatibility issues that a few players were having, particularly on linux.

Prerelease 7.060

(August 9th, 2014)

  • Fixed an issue in the last couple of versions with the images for the achievement icons.
    • Thanks to death2cupbots for reporting.
  • Put in several more output.log debugging messages and one more error trap relating to automatic update checks.
    • Thanks to SyberSmoke for inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.059

(Released August 9th, 2014)

  • The debug log now states what version of the game is being run at the time of an error, for the sake of clarity.
  • Put in some extra checking/clarity around the GetFocus stuff on windows, to prevent potential errors there as well as clarifying the severity of what is going on with it.
    • Thanks to SyberSmoke for inspiring this change.
  • In the main output log, the game now outputs some system information for debugging purposes, just like our later games do.
  • The GetFocus stuff on windows now no longer fires at all if you are not in an actual game setting, since it's not used until then anyway for anything useful. This should eliminate any possibility of crashes related to this on load.
    • Thanks to SyberSmoke for inspiring this change.
  • Just for testing purposes, added a new oldgfxpipeline beta branch on Steam that is version 7.056. If someone can run that version but not the later ones, then we know it's related to the graphics pipeline changes (for some reason).

Prerelease 7.058

(Released August 8th, 2014)

  • Massively updated the render pipeline for the graphics engine of the game, so that it uses the newer methods that we developed for Valley 1 and then refined from then forward.
    • This should lead to somewhat better performance, as now the bulk of the rendering is decoupled from the actual updates-by-frame.
    • The hope is that this will also resolve an issue that mirkobern was having with his specific build on linux where graphics were blank for him on this game, but worked fine on our later games.

Prerelease 7.056

(Released August 7th, 2014)

  • Fixed an issue in the prior version that was causing the context menus to not work properly.
    • Thanks to AdamMil for reporting.

Prerelease 7.055

(Released August 6th, 2014)

  • Some more tweaks have been made to the textbox handling in an effort to prevent it from going crazy when there is a scrolling area somewhere else on the screen.
  • Put in a fix to make it so that the enter key is not triggering the chat box to pop up a bunch after you use it to confirm other actions.
    • Thanks to Cinth for reporting.
  • Updates are now hosted on Amazon S3, rather than our own website, now matching all our other games.
    • This helps us with some bandwidth and caching issues.
  • Put in some code that kills the old updater files when the game runs. If you are on Steam and are trying to run the updater, then this should solve the issue of the new updater trying to update into the wrong place because it's finding the old updater.
    • If you're not on Steam, then unfortunately you manually have to go in and delete your updater .exe file (windows) or .app folder (osx) from the base game folder.
    • Thanks to malkiel for inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.054

(Released August 4th, 2014)

  • Mostly as a test, the game is now _always_ showing the scrollbar in the messagebox window.
    • There is a lack of clarity as to whether the scrollbar itself is causing the issues with the textbox focusing, or whether having more text lines in the message window than can be shown at once (thus requiring scrolling) is the issue. In other words, does the textbox focus issue still happen when there is a scrollbar but there's nothing it has to scroll? Or is the mere presence of the scrollbar itself enough to be a problem?
    • Since Chris is working on this and can't duplicate the issue at all, any feedback on this is much appreciated!

Prerelease 7.053

(Released August 2nd, 2014)

  • Put in fixes for some case-sensitivity problems with a few of the new expansion's images.
    • Thanks to Physical Original for reporting.

Prerelease 7.052

(Released August 1st, 2014)

  • Made some substantial "focus-related" changes to the textbox behavior, and now the game seems to handle textboxes properly (one caveat below). Please let us know if you see any other issues, though, as some of them seem to definitely be machine-specific (for reasons passing understanding).
    • The one caveat is that if you go to the Save dialog and type something, it works as expected. But then if you cancel out of that window and later come back and click into the textbox there, it will highlight all the text when you first click into the box, rather than placing your cursor where you clicked. This is a pretty tame thing overall, and just clicking a second time resolves it.
  • Updated the delays between individual sound effects playing a copy of themselves further.
    • Interface sound effects remain at 200ms, just so that it keeps feeling super responsive. The odds of that actually being a problem are really low anyhow, but just in case.
    • Explosion sound effects are now at 500ms minimum interval.
    • All other sound effects are now at a 700ms minimum interval.
    • This does indeed seem to better approximate the sound playback in the prior versions.
    • Thanks to Kaleopan for the very specific (metronome-tested, goodness!) suggestions.
  • The achievements grid is now 500px tall, rather than 395px.
  • Put in a hackish fix to the achievements extra-scroll-area bug that has been super longstanding (since at least 2010).
    • Thanks to leb0fh for both originally reporting it, and poking us about it four years (!) later.

Prerelease 7.051

(Released August 1st, 2014)

  • Fixed an issue from the prior version that was causing the OSX version to fail to load if the file system was set to ignore case sensitivity.

Prerelease 7.050

(Released August 1st, 2014)

  • Fixed a couple of dozen bad image definitions that must have led to some pink boxes in some various situations on any platform. Or at least it was loading the pink images and never showing them, best case.
  • Ran an automated process to find incorrectly-cased folders and files on linux, and fixed 85 files that were otherwise loading as just pink images.
  • Due to the new way that sounds play back as of 7.048, their volume is greatly increased (don't ask why, it's a unity engine quirk). The master sound volume for all the sound effects -- not the music, which is still the same as before -- is now set to 75 instead of 100.
    • This is both the new default and what the existing settings for everyone are now reset to. So if you had it much quieter, you may suddenly find it loud -- sorry about that!
  • AI War has a... unique... number of projectiles and explosions going on at any given time, not to mention the number of ships going through wormholes at a given time or whatever. In the previous version of the game, this was limited by a RAM-inefficient method of having three separate copies of each sound effect in memory, and six copies of each explosion, and only being able to play each one once.
    • The new system uses a more modern and much more RAM-efficient pooling approach, and is capable of playing a lot more sounds at once (so that it doesn't seem like something is silent). However, without any governer set on that, it can stack hundreds of copies of the same sound effect on top of itself, leading to the sound of distortions as well as a huge volume spike on those sounds.
    • The game now makes it so that a given sound effect can't play more frequently than every 200ms, and that keeps the flexibility of the new system while removing the volume and distortion issues that resulted from excess stacking. It now sounds a lot more like previous versions of the game; to the casual ear, it should be identical, pretty much.
    • Thanks to Kaleopan and Toll for reporting.
  • Fixed the AI voice taunts not working since the upgrade to the sound system. Though honestly, looking at the code it seems likely that these have not been working for a _long_ time.

Prerelease 7.049

(Released July 31st, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug in the prior version where music tracks would not play after the first one. This was something that we ran into with Bionic Dues on this version of the unity engine, and we had ported forward the new music playback code without that.

Prerelease 7.048 Because It Was Going Too Smoothly

(Released July 31st, 2014)

  • Improved the Destroyer-of-Worlds units' far-zoom icons and borders.
    • Thanks to HitmanN for the revisions.
  • Made various updates to the tutorials to account for changes since 7.0 (mentioning salvage, etc).
  • Added a new tutorial for the Hacking mechanic (inserted just before the intermediate one).
  • Neinzul Cockroach:
    • Autoattrition now tries to kill it in 60 seconds instead of 240.
    • Base Health from 5 => 60, so it doesn't actually autoattrit-die in 5 seconds.
    • Attack power from 74 => 900.
    • The neinzul spawner core guard post now spawns about 1/12th as many of these as before.
  • Drove an oaken stake through the heart of collision detection to get line-place to actually place all the units it says it will in the positions it says it will, since visually those placements don't actually overlap.
    • Did fix a bug where the multi-line-place function recently introduced was generating actually-overlapping placements, however.
    • Thanks to Kahuna and Toll for further reports and saves of the issues.
  • Fixed some bugs that were causing Spire Cities on Nomads to still not grow to stage 2 when there were AI neighboring planets (or non-Nomad cities to be blocked by AI-controlled nomad neighbors)
    • Thanks to Vinco for the report and save
  • Now when the game is seeding Core fleet-ship Fabricators it obeys the Simple/Normal/Complex ship-type-complexity setting from the lobby.
    • Thanks to Alex Heartnet, Kahuna, and Histidine for inspiring this change.
  • The fabricator filter now omits the "Core " prefixes and " Mark V" suffixes, since they're redundant info and make the strings pretty long.
  • Fixed a bug where mousing over the text for the fabricator, golem, or asteroids filters would cause the background box to disappear but not the text.
    • It still won't hide other pieces of the text not actually under the mouse cursor; for now, in this older GUI framework, this may be the best we can do for now.
    • Thanks to Toranth for reporting the text not being hidden.
  • Triple-clicking a player-controlled nebula starship now cross-selects according to its tier (basic combat ship, advanced combat ship, or command ship) rather than according to its splinter faction race.
    • Thanks to Bognor for the suggestion.
  • Engineers and Remains Rebuilders can no longer be swallowed by Maws, etc, to avoid inconvenient results when it's a planet with auto-build-engineers/etc controls set (it messes with your ship cap otherwise).
    • Thanks to TechSY730 for the suggestion.
  • Fixed a bug where exos could ignore the no-swallower-units toggle and get disassembler guardians anyway.
    • Thanks to Lancefighter for the report and save.
  • Fixed a bug where MkV Neinzul Combat Carriers were getting both MkIV and MkV drones, instead of just MkV.
    • Thanks to malkiel for reporting.
  • MkV turrets cap increased by 50% to make hacking/capturing core turret controllers a more attractive option.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a minor glitch in the settings where the network sync performance settings text was wrapping improperly.
  • The graphical assets loading path is now much updated to be more like our later games, leading to faster loading times.
  • The way that sound and music loading and playback is handled has been completely redone to match the later games in our meta-engine, rather than relying on the older style. They thus load faster and playback better, and no longer cause disk IO load during heavy fighting in battles.

Upgraded From Unity 3.3 to Unity 4.2.1

  • A number of improvements have been made to textbox handling so that they now function properly with the newer version of unity. Previously, whenever we tried this upgrade we would get all kinds of wonkiness with textboxes, but now that seems to be fine. If you see any issues with it, please let us know!

Updated Steamworks Integration To Steamworks.NET

  • Overall this doesn't matter much, but we're using Steamworks.NET now and this lets us have compatibility with linux, and may fix some issues with osx steamworks integration if any incompatibilities have crept in over the years. Basically this is using the new system that all of our other games were recently switched to.
  • The submission of scores to the steam leaderboards is now opt-in, since from past experience with Skyward Collapse on the new Steamworks integration we have seen there are rare instances where this can cause crashes for players. Better safe than sorry.

Steam No Longer Gives License Keys For Any Expansions

  • Since 7.0, Steam has not actually required you to enter your expansion license keys in the game, but it was still giving them to you anyway. Now it no longer even gives them to you, to avoid any confusion.
    • Non-steam versions continue to use the license keys as normal, but when 8.0 comes out we will be having non-Steam license-key-free versions of the game (as we now have with the Valley games, for instance).
    • Note that the base game does still require a license key for the moment, and does still give you one on steam, consequently. This will also change by 8.0.
  • The Steam version of the game no longer requires a license key for even the base game. However, for now it will continue giving you one, because this is not yet rolled out beyond the beta branch on steam.

The New Cross-Platform Arcen Updater

  • This one is not only cross-platform, it's also gloriously faster to run and also allows for smaller downloads per update. Hooray! This is now the last of our games to get updated to use it.

Prerelease 7.047 Beltsander of Worlds MkIV

(Released July 23rd, 2014)

  • The four on/off chat commands you can use to determine what kinds of behavior the roaming enclaves engage in are now also available as toggles on a new "Allies" tab of the CTRLS screen.
    • For now the chat commands still work, and probably will continue to do so in case anyone prefers using a chat script for setting them up, etc.
    • Thanks to Eternaly_Lost and many others for reminding us that this was necessary for the official version (the chat commands just being proof-of-concept).
  • Line Place now lets you specify the number of lines, and the "units to place" is now "units per line". So if you set it to 50 per line, and 3 lines, you can get a 3-wide dense set of mines that's basically guaranteed to place with the spacing shown in the preview.
    • As opposed to placing 3 lines separately, where you'll often have the 2nd and third lines with gaps in them where it collided with the first.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for reporting that the 3-line thing _still_ wasn't working right.
  • The Daily Tips have been revised to correct factual errors, mention new mechanics, etc.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 for reminding us this needed a pass.
  • Added an additional check to avoid orphan modules from AI hybrid hives and riot starships.
    • Thanks to vigilo confido and orzelek for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where spirecraft martyrs (and perhaps warheads) were not drawing their explosion range correctly when z was held.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the report that brought this to our attention.
  • Amended the Fabricator Hacker description to note that it also works on Core Turret Controllers.
    • Thanks to pumpkin and Bognor for bringing the ambiguity to our attention.
  • The logic for determining when to show a "command station under attack" message is now broader and should encompass all ways in which a command station can take damage, notably including plasma-siege under-forcefield splash damage.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 for inspiring this change.
  • The "Detected Core Fabs", "Detected Experimental Fabricators" and "Detected Experimental Starship Fabricators" galaxy display filters:
    • Have been combined into a single "Detected Fabricators" filter.
    • Which also includes Core Turret Controllers.
    • And now the filter will display the name of the fabricated unit of each fab present, with the first in green, the second in blue, etc, to make it visually clear which planets have multiple such devices, etc.
  • The "Broken Golems" filter is now the "Broken Superweapons" filter (as it already applied to the Nomad Beacon and Exodian Blade, too), and also shows the name of each such unit rather than just a count of what's present.
  • The Exodian Blade and Nomad Beacon now have 90% resistance to Implosion.
    • Thanks to pumpkin and others for inspiring this change.
  • All golems (except the already-invincible ones) now have 50% resistance to Implosion.
  • The Exodian Blade counter-exos are now less variable based on how long since you started repairing the blade. As before, each exo is 1.15 stronger than the previous, but:
    • During the repair phase, the multiplier is capped at 2, and if an exo is capped it doesn't add to the number of *1.15 steps the next exo gets.
    • During the "travel phase" (when the blade is active, but not yet on an AI HW), the multiplier is floored at 2 and capped at 6.
    • During the final phase (when the blade is on an AI HW) the multiplier is floored at 6 and has no cap. You still need to finish that one fast.
    • Overall, this should make it so that taking really long on the repair (or travel) phase doesn't cause you to be doomed without the game informing you of this doom until the final phase.
    • Thanks to atomjack, pumpkin, orzelek, Qatu, Toranth, and vigilo confido for inspiring this change.
  • Amended the Exodian Blade pre-repair journal to emphasize that you shouldn't start the repairs unless you think you're ready to charge once the repairs are done.
    • Thanks to atomjack and others for inspiring this change.
  • Now when determining whether a spire city has its neighbors cleared of warp-gate stuff (and thus eligible to grow to stage 2) :
    • Nomad neighbors are ignored.
    • A city on a nomad is always considered to have sufficiently cleared the warp-gate stuff away.
    • Thanks to vinco and Qatu for inspiring this change.
  • Removed tachyon beams from astro trains (except the Tachyon Train, which still has planetary coverage).
    • Thanks to TechSY730 and others for the suggestion.
  • Flak Turret:
    • Base cap-health from 600k*mk => 750k*mk.
    • Base cap-DPS from 3.15k*mk => 4k*mk.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 and others for inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.046 Beltsander of Worlds MkIII

(Released July 17th, 2014)

  • Added the last two expansion-specific achievements (one for winning with nomads enabled on 4+, one for winning via the exodian-blade alternate victory condition).
  • The Objectives screen now lists Spire Archives.
    • Thanks to Bognor for the suggestion.
  • Fixed a text issue in the tutorial where it was listing resources in the wrong order.
    • Thanks to Akumala for the report.
  • Fixed an objectives-screen tooltip that referred to the old form of knowledge raiding rather than the newer hacking mechanic.
    • Thanks to pumpkin and giftgruen for the report.
  • The objectives screen now includes the next step for exploiting the Nomad Beacon, if present.
    • Thanks to Draco18s for the suggestion.
  • The objectives screen now has a line for the next step in the Exodian Blade progression, if enabled.
    • Thanks to Draco18s for the suggestion.
  • Fixed a bug where shutting down the warp grid via Showdown wouldn't disable the exos related to the Nomad Beacon or Exodian Blade.
    • Thanks to Eternaly_Lost for reporting.
  • The objectives list now mentions discovered design-backup-servers.
    • Thanks to pumpkin for the suggestion.
  • Fixed a bug where the FS objectives section would continue to say you should build the galactic capitol even after you'd already done so.
    • Thanks to pumpkin for the report.
  • Units whose explosion-kills do not yield salvage (i.e. warheads) now also do not generate salvage by their own deaths. In other words dropping an armored warhead on an AI planet will no longer cause a massive reprisal.
    • Thanks to malkiel and TechSY730 for inspiring this change.
  • Mercenary ships now generate 1/10th the salvage they normally would. Since they cost 10x what the normal equivalent MkIV ship would cost, this means they have basically the same salvage value of the normal ship.
    • Thanks to malkiel for inspiring this change.
  • A Mime throwing back EMP warheads will now use the no-AIP ones.
    • And a Mime will no longer throw back Tachyon warheads.
    • Thanks to malkiel for inspiring these changes.
  • Line place now uses an alternate placement logic that ensures that items in the very same placement won't collide with each other (otherwise it resulted in mines placed such that every other mine was not actually placed).
    • Thanks to Kahuna, Draco18s, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Added some extra explanation to the final Exodian Blade journal.
    • Thanks to Aklyon and pumpkin for inspiring this change.
  • Spirecraft Implosion Artillery, Penetrators, Rams, Attritioners, and Martyrs are now flagged as immune to attack boosting, since attack boosting didn't really apply to their mechanics properly anyway (and if it did, would be a bit much).
    • Thanks to Fleet Unity for inspiring this change.
  • Spirecraft Siege Towers and Translocators now have a max munitions boost of +100% (as opposed to the default of +400%).
    • Thanks to Fleet Unity for inspiring this change.
  • Distribution Nodes are no longer eligible targets for a sabotage hacker since the utility was quite dubious even when it worked, and a recent change to prevent sabotaged alarms from triggering seems to have broken the distribution nodes giving resources on sabotage anyway.
    • Thanks to malkiel for inspiring this change.
  • Corrected Mad Bomber tooltip to include that it likes to send Plasma Siege Starships, as well as Bomber Starships.
    • Thanks to Alex Heartnet for pointing out the need.
  • Immunity to translocation is now reflected in ship tooltips.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 for the suggestion.
  • Fixed a bug where the DestroyedPlanet.png image wasn't actually sent out through the updates.
    • Thanks to Aklyon for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where sabotage-hacking a Zenith Reserve wouldn't give you any ships.
    • Thanks to malkiel and TechSY730 for reporting.
  • Mimes will no longer try to send Zenith Hydra Heads back at you (it will have to find another way of making an offer you can't refuse).
    • Thanks to malkiel for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a bug where any nomad impact would destroy all nomads in the galaxy.
    • Thanks to Burnstreet for the report.
  • Hacking response (for non-superterminal cases):
    • Now starts at 0 wild rolls, rather than 1.
    • Base spawn strength reduced about 20%.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for inspiring this change.

A Bunch Of Text Cleanup

  • Thanks to Bognor for riding herd over a lot of these, and Histidine, zharmad, Kronic, Dazio, TechSY730, Draco18s, Lord of Nothing, ZaneWolfe, Aquohn, TieViper, zleorg, Spikey00, and others for the reports.
  • Zenith Trader description now specifies that it cannot be destroyed.
  • Sentinel Frigate description now specifies that its shots are susceptible to counter-sniper coverage.
  • The two Nebula starships with plasma siege weaponry now include the normal explanation for that.
  • Data Centers and Coprocessors now tell you how much the AIP reduction is on higher difficulties.
  • The Spire Corvette, Protector Starship, and Zenith Devastator no longer claim you need to build the MkIV variants from the Advanced Starship Constructor (you need to capture/hack one to build them, but the menu option is on the normal starship constructors as well).
  • The Zenith Electric Bomber now claims to be "large", rather than "expensive", since its cap costs are not abnormal.
  • The Gravity Drill Station no longer has stray line breaks in its description.
  • Alt Champ Progress now makes clear in its lobby tooltip that you need to add a champion to the game for it to make any difference.
  • The Mothership description no longer refers speficially to a Spire-Human alliance, since it is possible to provoke them in other ways.
  • Fixed some grammatical problems with "The Tank" AI Type's description.
  • The description for Paralyzer-type units now specified that the number is in units of seconds, rather than the inscrutable "x3" or whatever.
  • Updated the Zenith Miner lobby description to reflect that it now destroys supply at planets successfully hit.
  • Corrected the fabricator descriptions to reflect that the units can now be built at a standard construction facility, in addition to the fab itself.
  • The short name for the Youngling Firefly is now Yng Firefly instead of Y Firefly, to follow the convention of the other youngling types.
  • Sentinel Frigate no longer claims to be expensive, as its cap costs are not abnormal.
  • Updated the Superterminal's description to reflect the new pulse interval.
  • Self-Destruct Guardian description no longer claims to work like a lightning warhead.
  • The AI Command Station description no longer says that special forces guard posts can still reinforce a planet without the command station.
  • Fixed a bug where the MkIV Spire Starship's short name said IVI.
  • The Dark Spire Vengeance Generator description is now much clearer about what happens when it reaches critical mass.
  • Fixed a typo in the Youngling Firefly description.
  • The Colony Ship description no longer has some outdated advice on how to upgrade a command station.
  • Fixed an typo in the spirecraft jumpship description stating that the attrition happens on AI planets ">= Mark" rather than "> Mark".
  • The tooltips on the ARS tab of a science lab no longer reference the MkII versions of the ship lines being unlocked.

Prerelease 7.045 Beltsander of Worlds MkII

(Released July 1st, 2014)

  • Corrected the alert text on nomad beacon exos to not say "AI Planet" but rather "Non-Nomad Planet".
    • Thanks to Tridus for inspiring this change.
  • Planets that have been "removed from the game" now show on the galaxy map, but in a different icon (currently the nomad one for placeholder, to be replaced soonish). You can't interact with it or view it in planet view, it's not really in the game anymore, but there's something left to gloat over.
    • Thanks to Toranth for suggesting.
  • Fixed a bug where the MkI and MkII science labs still claimed to require supply, when in fact they (intentionally) function just fine without it.
    • Thanks to motai and Zair for reporting.
  • Nomad Beacon exos now spawn on an AI HW (if the beacon is on one, then that one, else a random one), rather than always on the beacon planet.
    • Thanks to Tridus for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a tutorial note still talking about 4 kinds of normal resources, since now it's 3 plus hacking (which isn't really part of what it discusses in that stage).
    • Thanks to vigilo confido for reporting.
  • The tutorial step that asks you to build science labs now specified "not the mark 2 ones".
    • Thanks to vigilo confido for the suggestion.
  • Previously there was logic that would show the tab for a modular ship type on your starship constructor even if you only had the MkV of that ship type via hacking the fab. Now it will also do so if you control the fab normally without having hacked it.
    • Thanks to Peter Ebbesen and others for reporting the strangeness of it not doing this.
  • The spirecraft asteroid galaxy-map-filters have been combined into a single one that shows, for each planet, how many of each type of asteroid is present (only displaying >0 values, with some simple color coding of each type to make it easier to visually scan for a particular kind).
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring this change.
  • The list of galaxy filters has been reorganized to have an order that makes at least somewhat more sense, and now tries to exclude filters that are irrelevant to your particular game setup (like detected-hybrids on a game with no hybrids).
    • Thanks to TechSY730, Burnstreet, nas1m, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Clarified the zenith mirror's description to explain that the global 10x damage against it is _instead_ of an attacker's normal multiplier against Neutron hulls.
    • Also it no longer says they're weak to melee ships, as they're immune to them.
    • Thanks to TechSY730, Bognor, Draco18s, and Aklyon for inspiring this change.
  • The rule where multiple human homeworlds would cause the AI to split its wave in half now only applies 50% of the time, so it has a 50% chance for each wave of not splitting it.
    • Thanks to TechSY730, vigilo confido, and Peter Ebbesen for inspiring this change.
  • Reprisal Level 1 (and thus the smallest amount that can be turned into a reprisal wave) now starts at 1.5x times the normal wave size, rather than 2x. The tooltip on the alert has also been updated to reflect that it's not just the normal wave set size.
    • Thanks to TechSY730, vigilo confido, Lord Of Nothing, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Spire Blades and Tackle Drones no longer have armor.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 for inspiring this change.
  • Exodian Blade:
    • Health increased by 50% (from 18M => 27M).
    • Can now move through hostile forcefields (but not fire through them).
    • Thanks to Toranth and others for inspiring these changes.
  • Added a rule to the Zenith Reprocessor:
    • AI-controlled units of this type do not generate metal for the AI, but do generate Salvage for it (including targets that are reclamation-immune), regardless of where the unit dies.
    • Thanks to TechSY730, Wingflier, and Draco18s for inspiring this change.
  • Plasma Siege Starship health has been reduced by about 25%.
    • Thanks to Lancefighter, TechSY730, Gemzo, and many others for inspiring this change.
  • Now when a nomad beacon's explosion would split the graph, in addition to the nuke-3 effect it destroys everything on the two planets that would normally have been removed from the game (including stuff normally immune to nukes, like an AI home command station).
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • Zenith mirrors in carriers now damage according to their "takes 10 times damage from everything" rule. Normally it ignores the contained unit's vulnerabilities but since this one applies to literally all incoming damage and otherwise they're 10 times harder to kill than they're supposed to be...
    • Thanks to Burnstreet and orzelek for the suggestion.
  • Now when the nomad planet is not on a nomad planet, the interval between nomad movement steps is divided by 4, so it doesn't take so long to cause an impact if that's what you're trying to do.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.

Fallen Spire Balancing

  • Largely due to power-creep among normal units and the advent of guard posts with serious teeth, the Fallen Spire capital ships have slid from "mostly unstoppable sledgehammers" to "great fleet centerpieces". Accordingly, the power of FS exos has also slid to a place where they can be largely handled with normal forces, and normal waves have come to rival them on the threat scale due to the high AIP values of FS games. All this isn't awful, but FS is probably more fun with the FS assets and response being on a more clearly defined "step above" the other stuff in the game. Cities have already had their power scaled up recently, but there's more to it than that.
    • Thanks to ArnaudB, Peter Ebbesen, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • The health and attack power of the Fallen Spire capital ships has been multiplied by 3. This includes the health of their shield modules and the attack power of their other modules.
  • Fallen Spire capital ships and city structures (and their shields) now have "implosion resistance" of varying degrees. The larger/higher-mark stuff has more resistance (the frigate gets 15%, the destroyer gets 30%, etc). Basically it's just a multiplier applied to any incoming implosion damage, so implosion is still more dangerous to FS units than most other weapons, but is not disproportionately so. This mechanic may be extended to other high-end superweapons later, with implosion becoming more of an anti-starship and anti-low-end-superweapon counter rather than a straight counter to anything really big. But whether that should be done isn't clear yet.
  • The exo response to the existence of spire city structures has been doubled.
  • The chase exos after the establishment of the first spire city have been doubled.
  • The FS exos during the construction and activation of the transceiver are no longer capped at a certain point (other than for arithmetic safety, but that would be... pretty high).
  • Now when reinforcements would redirect strength to waves for being over 200 AIP, 20% of that strength is actually retained for reinforcements per completed spire city hub (to a max of 100% at 5 cities). Balance-wise this is due to FS games being intended to get into the 2000+ AIP range, without the normal waves becoming utterly cataclysmic forces of doom. Thematically, it makes sense that the AI would give more thought to its defenses in the face of a human-spire alliance.
    • Along with this, the difficulty-based reduction in redirected reinforcement strength (that just caused that extra strength to be lost) has been toned down significantly. It used to be 0.25 on Diff 7, for instance, and is now 0.5. This is to make it less likely that a normal (non-FS) game on Diff 7 can simply ignore AIP.
  • Now when the transceiver has been fully activated:
    • The AI's FS response exos will gradually diminish in size.
    • Counterattack posts dying will no longer spawn counterwaves.

Prerelease 7.044

(Released June 25th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug in the previous version's pathfinding amendments (to make it not pick a nomad unless it was the shortest path) that basically broke pathfinding in a lot of cases.
    • Thanks to orzelek for the report and save.

Prerelease 7.043 Beltsander of Worlds MkI

(Released June 25th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where player units were prefering to path through nomads in cases where the paths were of an equal number of hops, rather than preferring to NOT path through nomads in such a case.
    • Thanks to orzelek, Tridus, and others for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where a human unit actually fully eaten by a maw could cause an overall increase in that player's cap of that ship type (until save/load).
    • Thanks to motai for reporting.
  • Improved the targeting responsiveness of the Exodian Blade.
    • Thanks to motai for the report leading to this change.
  • Fixed a bug where having golems-moderate on would impact the energy cost (and add AIP-on-activate) to the Nomad Beacon and Exodian Blade.
    • Thanks to ArnaudB for reporting.
  • Planets that have been exile-surveyed will now always display something on the exile filter.
    • If it's close enough it will display the number like before.
    • If it's further away than that, and in a game started in this version or later, it will display ">6" or something like that, telling you that it's beyond the maximum range at which it can give you precise information.
    • If it's further away than that, and in a game started before this version, it will display "???".
    • Thanks to Vinco and others for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed an infinite loop bug that could occur when the AI tried to launch a wave containing a ship with no specified strength value (for instance, an Experimentalist trying to send some experimental engineers).
    • Thanks to ArnaudB for the report and save.
  • Fixed a bug where metal spots could move a small distance on-load (it was still "aiming" at the correct saved position, but could displace a bit from it).
    • Note that if your harvesters and metal spots are misaligned because of this, this won't correct that, but it should prevent future cases of them becoming misaligned because of that.
    • Thanks to Burnstreet and others for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where doing an exile-survey hack of a planet "out of range" would actually trigger part of the logic as if you'd found the signal, which would then prevent future exile-survey hacks from happening at all, as well as give you a very confusing journal message.
    • It will also now detect if a loaded save is in that state and clear the "have found signal" flag and remove the erroneous journal so that you'll get it properly when you actually find the signal.
    • Thanks to orzelek, Tridus, and others for reporting.
  • The Mime AI Type:
    • Now no longer mimics enclave drones and other such ships that the AI won't even target except as a target of opportunity.
    • Now when mimic'ing a raid starship or a champion unit it uses the AI equivalents of those units rather than the human-specific ones.
    • Is now a Harder AI type rather than a Moderate one.
    • Thanks to Toranth, malkiel, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • Grav drones grav-range has been changed back to a flat 4000, while still keeping the enhanced grav intensity, and having that intensity now get higher with higher marks of drone. Possibly this is too much of a buff, we'll see, but they were apparently still not useful.
    • Thanks to ZaneWolfe for inspiring this change.
  • Warp Relays:
    • Now cloaked/camouflaged threat no longer counts.
    • Now the waiting threat has to be fairly large to even start making progress on a relay (and if it falls below that the relay will lose progress, until it's back to zero).
    • Now the relays "cost" twice as much, so that it won't be quite so much a rapid-fire whack-a-mole situation.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic, ArnaudB, orzelek, nitpik and others for inspiring these changes.

Prerelease 7.042

(Released June 23rd, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where loading loading a 7.041+ MP save could create more metal deposits than were there previously.
    • Thanks to Bummeri for reporting.

Prerelease 7.041

(Released June 23rd, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug from 7.036 where matter converters were not actually consuming any metal at all.
    • Thanks to Aarki for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where the galaxy map could be split.
    • Thanks to pumpkin for the report and save.
  • Added commands for enabling expansions 5 and 6 (same syntax: "cmd:activate expansion 5", etc). There's not really much of a use case for these other than expanding the set of possible future AI bonus ship types during the game, but there you go.
    • Thanks to TechSY730, TheokGrundor, and others for suggesting.
  • Fixed a bug where the Nomad Beacon exos would treat the beacon on a human HW like it was a beacon on an AI HW.
    • Thanks to Orelius for the report.
  • The part of the exodian blade logic that requires an AI HW wormhole now requires only that it had an AI HCS when the blade was brought fully online, rather than requiring that the AI HCS still be alive upon wormhole contact.
    • Thanks to pumpkin, Cinth, and others for inspiring this change.
  • The location of metal deposits and wormholes is now kept with the game state when the game is saved or sent across the network. Previously this was not true, and the locations would be regenerated (from the same random seed, except in case of bugs) by the computer reconstructing the gamestate. This generally worked ok, but every now and then something would upset the regeneration, etc. And now with nomads even with a lot of precautions taken it was happening all over the place due to the dynamic topology. It turns out that it _is_ possible to nail jello to a tree, if you use enough nails.
    • And so metal deposits will return to nomad planets, like normal.
    • That said, loading an previous-version save with nomads is very likely to result in a bunch more of those "harvesters reset" messages, but this should theoretically be the last time.
    • Thanks to Vacuity, MaxAstro, orzelek, and others for inspiring this change.
  • AI units will no longer kite drones and other "ignore except as target of opportunity" units.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • Those turrets with per-planet caps on their MkI, II, and III versions now are also per-planet capped for the MkIV and MkV versions.
    • Accordingly, the MkIV knowledge cost has been increased from 1250 (which is what MkIIIs cost) => 1500 (which is twice what MkIIs cost), since they're now straight upgrades from MkIIIs.
    • Bear in mind that this is a somewhat experimental change, and possibly will be reverted if it proves too problematic. But having all marks of a particular line be one cap or the other is more intuitive, and this helps the core turret controllers compete with the others.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring this change.
  • Previously the Needler, MLRS, Missile, and Flak turrets were balanced at around 40k energy-cap-cost, where the Sniper and Spider targeted 70k. That was fine (since the sniper-range turrets have higher overall utility), but the laser turret was set at 60k and the lightning turret at 80k. Those costs made thematic sense back when they were set before energy was as much of an issue, but now that energy costs are basically the main population-control mechanic for turrets it was a bit punishing to hit those with 50% or 100% higher energy costs without being fundamentally more useful.
    • So Laser and Lightning now target 40k energy-cap-cost.
  • Previously Grav Drones had a fixed 4000-range field with an intensity that started very mild but improved with mark level. That "very mild" was too mild to be particularly useful, so now we're trying with the intensity fixed at what it was for the MkV, but with the range being 1000*mk, and the drone being somewhat faster at higher mark levels.
    • Thanks to Toranth and Tridus for inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.040

(Released June 21st, 2014)

  • Some grammatical improvements to strings for the new expansion.
    • Thanks to ElOhTeeBee for suggesting.
  • Fixed a bug where Vanguard or Starship Fanatic AIs could result in empty exos.
    • Thanks to Cinth for the report and save.
  • Fixed a bug where multi-repair units (like forts, MSDs) could repair "broken" units (that metamorph at full health). Since they do their repairing without player orders this could be a problem with some of them.
    • Thanks to Draco18s for reporting.
  • Altplanetnames.txt no longer applies to nomad planets, which are named for interface clarity (so in planet-view you know which wormholes lead to a nomad, etc).
    • Thanks to Mad Rubicant for inspiring this change.
  • Nomad planets no longer get metal deposits, as the game would keep changing its mind on how many there should be (and where) due to wormhole positions changing.
    • When loading an older save with nomads this will cause another "harvesters reset" message for each of your owned nomads as they're removed.
    • Thanks to Vyndicu for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a bug where enclave/NCC drones were scaling in stats but not in count with ship cap scale. Thus their stats on lower caps would be much higher, but no longer. If this means they're now underpowered we'll address that, but they've been reported as OP so long that maybe this is a better place, we'll see.
    • Thanks to Cinth for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where beam drones were not self-damaging on firing. They still don't do it the way railpods do (that doesn't really work with the beam mechanic, it turns out) but their self-attrition accelerates upon firing, like how a tackle drone wears out faster when tractoring.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for reporting.

Prerelease 7.039

(Released June 20th, 2014)

  • The untangler's special logic with snake maps is now suppressed (in favor of the generalized logic) when Nomad Planets are enabled, as they break the assumptions the special case relies on (and crashes).
    • Thanks to Toranth for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where the Exodian Blade's response exos would enter the "on an AI Homeworld" phase-of-death when the planet in question was a _human_ homeworld.
    • Thanks to Aklyon for reporting.
  • Beam Drone base shot power from 600 => 200.
    • Thanks to MaxAstro and Arc-3N-4B for inspiring this change.
  • Player ships on Nomad planets can no longer trigger a deepstrike response, since the distance of a nomad into AI territory can vary widely.
    • Thanks to Vyndicu for the suggestion.
  • Now swallowed units (victims of Spire Maws, Starship Disassembler stuff, Powerslavers) no longer count against their owner's ship caps until disgorged.
    • If they're spit back out then they start counting against the ship cap again, and if there's not actually any ship cap room left for them they just die automatically.
    • Thanks to The Hunter, Toranth, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • All hacking device tooltips (including the 2 specific to the new expansions) now specify the time the process takes and how much HaP it costs.
    • Thanks to Aklyon, orzelek, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a bug where the Zenith Hydra's attack power was being set to some very wonky values for MkI/II/III (the same value for all three, actually), and in general corrected the computation of its power.
    • Thanks to Cinth for the report that brought this to our attention.
  • Fixed a bug where the science menu was still using the placeholder images for the Lightning Starship, Translocator Starship, and Powerslaver.
    • Thanks to The Hunter for reporting.
  • Now when a nomad planet relinks its wormholes, if any link changes actually happened, it will display a message in the message log so the player knows to review the map.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the suggestion.
  • Amended one of the exodian blade journals to note the need for energy to complete that stage.
    • Thanks to pumpkin for inspiring this change.
  • Added a note to one of the nomad journals telling you that you need energy for the next stage.
    • Thanks to pumpkin for inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.038

(Released June 19th, 2014)

  • Fixed several bugs where the tech entries for unlocking mkII/III of the new expansion's bonus ship types were not in the proper places.
    • Thanks to Mad Rubicant for reporting.

Prerelease 7.037

(Released June 19th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where the design-corruptor didn't have its new buy icon.
  • Filled in some text specific to the new expansion.

Prerelease 7.036 Sanding Before The Storm

(Released June 18th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where the Zenith Hydra's damage threshold for spawning a head was based on its health before the recent "divide by 100" scaling.
    • Thanks to malkiel and others for reporting.
  • The AI's logic for retreating in the face of overwhelming numbers is now more deliberate about trying to pick a neighboring planet where the AI isn't already outnumbered.
  • Matter Converters now have a per-planet cap of 10.
    • This helps avoid situations where someone is running a salvage-only economy on just their homeworld, etc. It also has far fewer potential follow-up problems than the alternate solution of "matter converters stop working when there's not enough metal to run them".
    • This also makes it so you can't protect an arbitrary number of them in a single super-tiny volume of space. With even a modest amount of territorial depth you can still protect all the ones you need, but it's less trivial now.
    • Thanks to Wingflier for inspiring this change.
  • The Spire City hub's salvage bonus from +20% => +10%.
    • Thanks to Wingflier, Toranth, Tridus, Peter Ebbesen, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Home Command Station salvage rate from 50% => 40%.
    • Thanks to... that's another one of those "nearly everyone said this needed a nerf" situations. TechSY730 was especially persistent.
  • All metal producers now no longer generate metal for you if the planet does not also have a completed human command station.
    • This isn't the same as requiring supply.
    • This notably includes Spire City Habitation Centers, as in some cases players were still able to reap their 1000/s metal income even after the city's planet had been overrun, allowing single-planet defenses with far more metal income than would be normally be available. The alternative was having the AI specifically make a point of scouring defeated spire cities, but this seemed like a better change to try first.
    • Thanks to liq3, Wingflier, and others for inspiring this change.
  • The description text for a modular ship template is now a much lighter shade of blue for readability.
    • Thanks to Ucchedavada for the suggestion.
  • The name text for a tech unlock is now a much lighter shade of purple for readability.
    • Thanks to daz for the suggestion.
  • EMP Mines:
    • Have been renamed to "Widow Mines" since they don't actually do the EMP effect, they just paralyze.
    • In addition to the paralysis effect, these now do engine damage.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 for inspiring these changes.
  • Fixed some bugs with the metal tooltip where salvage was being misreported and the player summaries weren't adding up with salvage.
    • Thanks to Burnstreet and malkiel for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where a sabotage-hacked alarm post could still trigger.
    • Thanks to Apathetic for reporting.
  • Put in additional checks to prevent multi-placing of command stations (in MP, mainly, was not able to reproduce this in SP).
    • Thanks to mobiusuno for the report.
  • The icons on the Hacker's buy menu (for the different hacking devices) are now all different.
    • Thanks to Blue (Arcen's fulltime artist) for these.

Prerelease 7.035

(Released June 8th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug in the last version's attempt to prevent exos from camping on top of a cloaked target ship, which was causing null exceptions in some cases.
    • Thanks to motai for the report.

Prerelease 7.034 When Cities Attack!

Released June 7th, 2014

  • The Vengeful AI's response-exos when you blow up something it cares about has been halved.
    • The response for destroying non-A core shield generators has been further halved, as the chain reaction of all of them going at once can be quite... energetic.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 and vigilo confido for inspiring these changes.
  • The "X Enemy Ships At This Planet" warning now factors in units in carriers and barracks.
    • Thanks to Peter Ebbesen for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a bug where the "Enemy Ships" total on the Stats screen didn't count cold-storage AI ships (a distinction the player shouldn't need to be aware of) or carrier/barracks units.
    • Thanks to Peter Ebbesen for the report.
  • Fixed a bug where the dyson gatling's conditional self-attrition had not been scaled down when health was divided by 100, leading to very rapid self-attrition.
    • Thanks to tadrinth and malkiel for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where an AI with both the Neinzul Youngster type and another type would roll for special wave types (bomber-heavy, etc) which messed with other assumptions of the Youngster type.
    • Thanks to tadrinth for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where the selection description window (lower-right corner, thereabouts) messed up the display of remaining health percentages for ships with small health values (it was dividing by 100 and discarding the remainder, which didn't really matter until recently...).
    • Thanks to giftgruen and relmz32 for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where EMP mines would not actually EMP the target that actually triggered the mine detonation (it worked fine on other ships around the triggering ship, so generally it worked out, but lone ships...)
    • Thanks to malkiel for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where MkI Ion Cannons were not eligible targets for the sabotage hacker (despite the other Ions being eligible).
    • Thanks to malkiel for the report and save.
  • Fixed a bug where spirecraft translocators were still called "SC Ion" in a few cases.
    • Thanks to tadrinth for the report.
  • Since the change to make hacking response scale with HaP_Spent (instead of your hacking balance) has been shown to be excessively brutal (such that spending more than, say, 350 HaP total ever is largely contraindicated), it's been changed such that accumulating extra HaP once again reduces the response (once total HaP spent is over 100), but the response also rises with a moderate exponent at that point, and the minimum response still always increases with each additional hack (the math is logged, if you're curious about how it works in a particular situation).
    • Thanks to Zane Wolfe, Peter Ebbesen, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Now when excess reinforcement strength (that would be lost due to capping) is redirected to wave strength it has a difficulty-specific multiplier applied to reduce it. So on Diff 10 it's still brutal but on Diff 7 it's much more relaxed about it.
    • Thanks to Mad Rubicant, Peter Ebbesen, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Put in a change that should at least make it less likely that exo ships focusing on a cloaked ship will actually intentionally converge on its location (despite it being cloaked).
    • Thanks to vigilo confido and TechSY730 for reporting.
  • Fixed some bugs that prevented loading of really old saves (from 3.x days).
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.

Spire City Buffs

  • When Fallen Spire was first implemented the city defenses were... formidable. Especially when upgraded, and especially on reactor-heavy cities. But as other units were rebalanced and buffed and such the numbers crept up and the city defenses are now overwhelmed much more easily than before. No longer.
    • And if the overall result is too much of a buff, a nerf will soon follow ;)
    • Thanks to Eternaly_Lost, Peter Ebbesen, Aeson, and others for most recently inspiring this change.
  • Having a Spire Hub on a planet now boosts its salvage rate by +20%.
  • The Hab Center's metal production from 600/s => 1000/s.
  • Spire City weapons (including modules) :
    • Base Attack Power quadrupled.
    • Attack range significantly buffed (somewhat less than doubled).
  • Spire City structure and forcefield-module health has been quadrupled.

Champion Alt Progress Revision

  • Now, instead of Alt-Progress gaining Levels and Unlock Points through XP (from Knowledge) and new modules/hull-types/hull-sizes/mod-forts/splinter-faction-allies from capturing/hacking ARS/AdvFact/Fab/etc structures, those modules/etc unlocks will be granted at certain levels (and thus it all comes through XP).
    • To be specific:
      • Level 2 - first new module type
      • Level 4 - first new hull type (zenith/neinzul/spire)
      • Level 6 - second new module type
      • Level 8 - first splinter-faction-ally (if intensity >= 5)
      • Level 10 - destroyer size
      • Level 13 - third new module type
      • Level 16 - first new mod-fort-type (zenith/neinzul/spire) (if intensity >= 3)
      • Level 19 - second splinter-faction-ally (if intensity >= 2)
      • Level 22 - fourth new module type
      • Level 25 - second new hull type (zenith/neinzul/spire)
      • Level 28 - fifth new module type
      • Level 31 - cruiser size
      • Level 34 - third splinter-faction-ally (if intensity >= 5)
      • Level 37 - sixth new module type
      • Level 40 - second new mod-fort-type (zenith/neinzul/spire) (if intensity >= 4)
      • Level 43 - fourth slpinter-faction-ally (if intensity >= 4)
      • Level 46 - seventh new module type
      • Level 49 - last new hull type (zenith/neinzul/spire)
      • Level 52 - battleship size
      • Level 55 - eighth new module type
      • Level 58 - last new mod-fort-type (zenith/neinzul/spire) (if intensity >= 5)
      • Level 61 - fifth (and last) splinter-faction-ally (if intensity >= 5)
      • Level 64 and every 3rd level thereafter - another new module type
    • The end result is that:
      • Alt-progress is now way less dependent on the RNG not throwing all those nicer capturables halfway across the galaxy from you (which could leave you stuck at Frigate for a long time), and the unlocks come much more granularly than the intermediate solution of having levels grant slow progress towards the "unlock sets".
      • Alt-progress's champion growth is now entirely "passive" in that it will happen simply by playing the game normally so you can focus on how to use what it gives you, rather than needing to specific things to get those toys. Depending on individual preferences that can be a good or bad thing, but probably someone wanting a substantially more "active" role in causing that growth will find normal-progress more satisfying anyway.
    • Thanks to Tridus, chemical_art, and others for inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.033

(Released May 30th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where researching the MkIV railcannon at a spire galactic capitol still had the Spider Turret as its prerequisite instead of the MkIII Sniper Turret (and even with the Spider Turret unlocked it didn't seem to work).
    • Thanks to Fleet Unity for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug in the last version where the Spider Turret was automatically unlocked (rather than requiring the spider turret research).
    • Thanks to Peter Ebbesen and ZaneWolfe for bringing this to our attention.
  • Fixed some railcannon tooltips saying they required spider turret research, when now they require sniper turret research.
  • Fixed a bug where the Spire Corvette's railcannon modules were still requiring spider turret research instead of sniper turret research.
    • Thanks to ZaneWolfe for the report.
  • Several stats that needed to be scaled down by 100 with the other stuff weren't, but now are:
    • Mine Damage
    • Attritioner Damage
    • Warhead/Martyr Per-Unit-Damage-Cap (actual total damage was already scaled)
    • Armor Damage (with the autocannon's staying significantly buffed as it only went from 3 => 1; if it's still too high we'll do something else; but all the others just got /100)
    • Protector Starship counter-shot "how many shots does it take to counter X" logic (it used to counter up to 100k damage with one countershot, it now counters up to 1k damage with one countershot)
    • Broken Golem starting health (which lead to them autorepairing on capture)
    • Thanks to malkiel, Shoat, Fleet Unity, Tridus, and others for bringing these to our attention.
  • Fixed a bug where the Regenerator Golem was still refusing to regen if its current health was less than 10% of its former max health, meaning it didn't regen at all. Now it only expects 10% of its scaled-down max health.
    • Thanks to Fleet Unity for the report.

Prerelease 7.032 Peaceful Interlude

(Released May 29th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug in wave calculations where the number of human homeworlds was being factored in twice.
    • Thanks to Cinth, chemical_art, DrFranknfurter, and others for reporting.
  • The superterminal hack on-death pulse strength has been divided by 3, to let the during-hack pulses take a more prominent position with their recent buffs.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the suggestion.
  • Fixed a bug where "Exotic" AI types were factoring in both their difficulty level's wave multiplier and their difficulty level's exo multiplier (now it just does the wave multiplier).
    • Thanks to HTL2001 for the report and save.
  • Fixed a bug where the homeworld-assualt-response-exo's max budget was being enforced when loading a save but not actually during the running of the game.
    • Thanks to HTL2001 for the report.
  • Fixed a bug where, if the player captured an AI Homeworld, the champ-nemesis exos spawned from there would be controlled by that human player. I'm sorry to have to fix this, but it can't really work right that way :)
    • Thanks to nitpik for the report.

Turret Rework

  • Something like this has been discussed a number of times in the past, but without a consensus that it should actually happen. Recently that changed, so...
    • Thanks to MaxAstro, orzelek, Peter Ebbesen, Tridus, relmz32, Faulty Logic, tadrinth, Draco18s, Fleet Unity, Aklyon, Toranth, ZaneWolfe, onyhow, Lancefighter, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • Added MkII, and MkIII versions of the Sniper and Spider turrets.
  • For the main combat turret lines (Needler, Laser, MLRS, Missile, Lightning, Flak, Sniper, Spider), Marks I, II, and III:
    • Caps changed from galaxy-wide to now per-planet
    • Caps have been halved (so they're now what the MkV caps used to be)
    • Individual-turret energy costs doubled, so cap-energy-cost is staying the same.
    • Knowledge costs from 0/1250/2000 => 0/750/1250
      • Snipers from 0 (only had one mark) => 0/1250/1750
      • Spiders from 2000 (only had one mark) => 1250/2250/3250
  • Added new MkIV versions of those lines:
    • Basically just 4/3rds as powerful as MkIIIs.
    • But have galaxy-wide caps like the I, II, and IIIs used to (and thus are primarily good for augmenting chokepoints).
    • Cost same knowledge as the MkIIIs, more power for the same cost, since you only get the one cap of MkIVs rather than per-planet.
  • Mk V (the ones enabled by core turret controllers) :
    • Caps changed from per-planet to global galaxy-wide (and thus are now primarily a boost to chokepoints and other critical-defense).
    • Caps have been doubled (so they're now what the MkI/etc caps used to be)
    • No longer prevent placement of the lower-marks of the same line, and vice versa.
  • Some Fallen-Spire module tech-prereqs have been reevaluated in light of the added turret marks.

Stat Rescaling

  • Basically for a long time the stats of normal stuff (non-superweapons) has crept up through various buffs and new units, etc. To the point where we realized the normal starships were getting into the superweapon range, and the supwereapons couldn't really go up because the health values wouldn't really fit in the 32-bit-integer datatype (and it's also unnecessarily hard to read values in the hundreds of millions and billions). In fact, "Downscaling health/attack/armor/etc stats" tied for 5th in the big-stuff-for-8.0 poll.
    • So we're dividing the health, attack, armor, and armor piercing of everything by 100. This won't solve the "MkV Zenith Starship has stats in superweapon territory" and similar issue, but does set the stage for changes that can do so, and in the meantime helps readability.
    • Overall this shouldn't really impact combat at all (and in testing fights seemed to go similarly to what they did before the change), but let us know if something went wonky.
    • Thanks to TechSY730, Tridus, Histidine, Aklyon, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • Naturally, some adjustments to units with numbers on the lower end were needed (all changes are in terms of the pre-divide-by-100 numbers, for the mkI versions) :
    • Zenith Polarizer:
      • Base Attack from 49 => 100.
      • Seconds-per-salvo from 2 => 4.
      • Attack multiplier from "sqrt(target_armor)" => "sqrt(target_armor*100)" (still min 4, max 100).
    • Youngling Vulture:
      • Base Attack from 78 => 100.
      • Seconds-per-salvo from 5 => 6.
    • Impulse Reaction Emitter:
      • Base Attack from 153 => 300.
      • Seconds-per-salvo from 2 => 4.
    • Laser Gatling:
      • Base Attack from 150 => 200 (just a straight buff, as it could stand more than that).
    • Autocannon Minipod:
      • Base Attack from 140 => 200 (see laser gatling note)
    • Lightning Turret:
      • Base Attack from 263 => 300.
      • Seconds-per-salvo from 15 => 17.
    • Vorticular Cutlass:
      • Base Attack from 360 => 400.
      • Cap from 392 => 352.
    • A bunch of other units with lesser deviations from multiple-of-100 have been rounded to the nearest one.
  • When loading an older save this version most damged units will no longer be damaged (since it will try to set their old current-health value with their new max-health, and just get capped at max-health), but when reading in a broken-golem it will divide that current-health value by 100 to avoid those getting insta-activated upon load.

Prerelease 7.031

(Released May 21st, 2014)

  • Warp Relays have been removed from the core game and shifted to a new AI Plot for those who would like to play with them enabled.
    • Thanks to Peter Ebbesen, Tridus, TechSY730, Cyborg, Lord of Nothing, relmz32, Draco18s, and Faulty Logic for inspiring this change.
  • Further Superterminal hacking balancing:
    • During-the-hack-pulse strength tripled.
    • End-pulse strength's multiplier halved (so it will be about 1.5x of what it used to be, with the above change).
    • Pulse interval from 15 seconds => 5 seconds, in hopes of making the hack itself more "interesting", without buffing the end response.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring these changes.
  • Fixed a typo of the word "devastation" in the recently updated warhead descriptions.
    • Thanks to Peter Ebbesen for the report.
  • The alert about an in-progress warp relay now says "spawning" rather than "constructing", to make it less likely people will expect to actually see an in-progress structure.
    • Thanks to YunoRaptor for inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.030

(Released May 20th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug in the last version where _any_ AI wave could pick _any_ planet to attack. The Counterattack Guard Posts appear to have... well, counterattacked.
    • Thanks to Nargasse and YunoRaptor for reporting.

Prerelease 7.029 Extermination Protocol MkII

(Released May 20th, 2014)

  • The units which have nonstandard damage-multipliers-when-under-human-FF now list that info in the abilities line.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for inspiring this change.
  • Many ships that used to be immune to mines no longer are.
  • Carriers are no longer immune to mines. In fact, we realized that those things are really quite huge and probably about as evasive as a cow on rollerskates. So now carriers will not only hit mines, they will hit ALL the mines they touch (rather than the usual behavior of just hitting 1 per field, and not hitting another for another X seconds).
    • In practice this doesn't hurt them very much, being giant balls of HP, but it's the thought that counts.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for inspiring this change.
  • The save-game process now has some extra precautions against triggering an out-of-memory exception during intense gamestates:
    • The earlier changes to have the "trim heap usages during play" logic not actually do a trim operation on a list with fewer than 100 unused entries does seem to have succeeded in reducing (perhaps eliminating) the number of TooManyHeapSections exceptions, but since it does leave some memory "on the table" the save process now causes that more aggressive trimming to happen anyway.
      • This shouldn't cause the heap-sections problem as that was apparently only happening when hundreds or thousands of lists were being reallocated several times a second in some cases, rather than just once ever minute at the most.
    • In addition to garbage-collecting just before serializing the gamestate to a saved-gamestate string, it now also Garbage-Collects just before the compression of the saved-gamestate string, so that the intermediate buffers used in that serialization aren't stacking on top of the memory-intensive compression routine.
    • Thanks to Draxis for inspiring these changes.
  • Fixed a bug where the Special Forces could eventually build up to a really big stinking pile of Riot Starships, which places an undue load on the memory footprint due to the modules and not being subject to the "excess SF units get stuffed in carriers" rules.
    • Thanks to Draxis for inspiring this change.
  • The Planetary Armor Inhibitor now no longer turns off all enemy forcefields (which is ok in many cases but unbelievably OP in others), but instead makes them take double damage.
    • Some of you really relied on the old inhibitor's effect for crazy stuff like 16-HW games with 10/10 Fallen Spire exos coming at you, so if you care more about being able to play that way than about balance you can spawn one of these using the old unit's internal name with the cheat "ilostit,PlanetaryShieldInhibitor,1000,1000,1" (the 1000,1000 is the location, which will put it near the center of the gravwell, negative numbers move up and to the left, etc).
    • Thanks to Toranth, Faulty Logic, and others for inspiring this change.
  • The Planetary Armor Booster now has the added effect of causing all allied forcefields to take half damage.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for inspiring this change
  • Economic Command Station energy production from = 2k/4k/6k => 10k/75k/150k. So a MkIII now produces as much as an Energy Collector. Possibly this is too much, we'll see, but econs have really lagged behind the other two (especially Military) in desirability of upgrades.
    • Thanks to Winge, Kahuna, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Military Command Station metal production from 48/96/192 => 24/48/96. This doesn't nerf its main purpose (insane defensive utility between planetary attack boost and those translocator guns), but does let the logistics and econ upgrades have more relative desirability in that area.
    • For reference, Logistics metal production is 48/96/192, and Econ metal production is 64/160/320.
  • Armored, Artillery, Black Widow, and Cursed golems now have a higher exo-point cost.
    • Thanks to Peter Ebbesen for inspiring this change.
  • Regenerator golems now have a lower exo-point cost, since in general they've been less dangerous in AI hands. Or so it seems. Can always move it back ;)
  • The "when a core guard post dies, launch a revenge exo" logic has been replaced by logic where:
    • When a core guard post on an AI HW drops below 75% health (or dies), that HW schedules an exo 10 minutes from then.
    • When that exo launches, another larger exo is scheduled 30 minutes out. Then another still-larger 30-minute one after that, etc.
    • If the AI home command station on that planet dies, any of its scheduled assault-provoked exos are cancelled (even if the other AI home command station is still alive).
    • Just like the logic this is replacing, it doesn't happen at all if the "Lazy AI" lobby modifier is on.
    • Grav Reactor core posts don't trigger this, since they sometimes have to be killed much earlier in the game.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic and others for inspiring this change.
  • When faced with a single ingress point for waves, the AI now saves up for 2x strength instead of 1.5x (this doesn't come fully into effect until the 2 hour mark, as before).
    • Thanks to Kahuna for inspiring this change.
  • Buffed wave strength again on the higher difficulties. 8.3 received a small boost, 10 received a significant boost, interpolating inbetween.
  • Now that "capped" reinforcements redirect that "lost" strength elsewhere, the effective max AIP for reinforcements has been changed from (AIDifficulty*AIDifficulty*5) to just a flat 200. This way going higher AIP on high difficulty levels will focus more on killing you than building large defensive forces.

Counterattack Posts Sidelined In Favor Of Warp Relays

  • Basically trying to replace one of the most widely-viewed-as-annoying mechanics in the game with something that still challenges the impenetrable-chokepoint strategy but is more enjoyable.
    • Thanks to Lancefighter, Faulty Logic, Draco18s, Fleet Unity, Aklyon, Toranth, RockyBst, Mad Rubicant, tadrinth, ZaneWolfe, Kahuna, nas1m, Qatu, Chthon, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • The AI now normally does not get Counterattack Guard Posts. There is now a new AI Plot for enabling them.
    • The AI Type that specifically gets these will still get them, plot or no.
    • This does not remove posts already seeded in older saves.
  • Now, when AI threat is waiting on a planet because it dares not go through the next wormhole (believing, usually correctly, that the human stuff on the other side would repaint a local moon with their innards), it contributes its strength towards building a "Warp Relay" on that planet.
    • This doesn't even start before the 1-hour-mark.
    • The contribution is capped at 1000 strength of AI forces, so more than that won't make it go faster.
    • At the maximum rate of contribution (1000+ waiting threat strength) this will complete in 20 minutes.
    • If there is no longer any waiting threat strength on a planet, its accumulation will quickly diminish towards zero (at -1000 per second, to be exact).
    • When the relay is between 50% and 100% completed, there will be a warning in the alert box telling you where and how far along it is.
    • Once a relay is built, it doesn't try to build another one on the same planet (unless the previous one is destroyed, of course).
  • A Warp Relay:
    • Functions like a normal warp gate, though it costs no AIP to kill.
    • Allows waves to target planets within N hops of the relay, where N is the AI tech level + 1.
    • This propogation does spread through Warp-Jammer'd planets, but does not allow waves directly against a Warp-Jammer'd planet.

Prerelease 7.028

(Released May 16th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where, if broken-golems was not enabled at all, the game would "forget" that other exos were synchronizing-with-CPA across save/load.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.
  • Since Special Forces Guard Posts no longer cause AIP, Special Forces Captains no longer get extra Data Centers.
  • AI-controlled champion units are no longer immune to AOE, and thus no longer immune to warheads.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • Science Labs, Hackers, Hacking devices (the things built by the hacker), Space Docks, Mercenary Space Docks, and Starship Constructors are now all immune to the plasma-siege's "forcefield network splash damage" and to AOE in general.
    • The science labs because it's just an annoyance to rebuild them, nothing more.
    • The hacking stuff because otherwise splash damage tends to nail these too easily, especially when under planetary AI tachyon coverage.
    • The docks/constructors because, despite the tactical advantage the AI can gain by destroying them, it's pretty easy for the player to work around it via the tedium of flash-rebuilding them somewhere else on the planet and re-queuing everything.
    • Thanks to Lancefighter and many others for inspiring these changes.
  • Champ nemesis exos and alt-nemesis threatfleet spawns:
    • Bonus from extra human champs from 20% each => 14.2% each.
    • Multiplier from alt-nemesis Intensity scaled down significantly.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring these changes.

Prerelease 7.027

(Released May 15th, 2014)

  • Nemesis exos (and the alt-nemesis threatfleet spawns) now:
    • No longer scale by the highest champion hull size you have (previously they gained +33% per size level, so a total of +100% at Battleship size).
    • Bonus size gained from each extra champion from +33% => +20%.
    • Thanks to Toranth and Fleet Unity for inspiring these changes.

Prerelease 7.026

(Released May 14th, 2014)

  • Now when reinforcements strength overflows to augment the next wave, it actually puts 90% of it towards the next wave, and 10% of it towards the next CPA. Otherwise at high AIP waves can actually get substantially bigger than CPAs (which might still be possible, but the % will be tweaked as needed).
    • Thanks to Peter Ebbesen for inspiring this change.
  • The AI rules added in the last version to be more deliberate about killing grav turrets have been ratcheted back to more of a "target of opportunity" logic where they'll often shoot at grav turrets as they move towards their primary targets but will avoid stopping to shoot the things that are slowing them down.
    • They'll also tend not to pay special attention to recently built grav turrets, as that typically indicates a situation where the player can troll them with rebuilders and engineers.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for inspiring these changes.
  • Fixed a bug where lightning and armored warheads could not be given direct attack orders because... well, they didn't have a conventional attack anymore, after the conversion to the "explosion after death" mechanic that allows their new aoe logic.
    • This also was preventing Neinzul Rocketry Corps warheads from actually making attack runs on a target on the same planet. They'd dutifully get to the target planet and then just sit there and provide remarkably cheesy opportunities to enterprising and shameless players.
    • Thanks to RockyBst and Toranth for reporting.
  • Carriers now show a health bar for the internal unit that is "next to die". So if it's got a MkIV Zenith Starship next in line then you'll get something of a progress bar rather than it looking like the carrier is invincible.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for inspiring this change.
  • Health bars now draw in increments of 5% instead of 10%, to be a bit more responsive for high-durability units.

Hacking De-Oops-ifying

  • So those post-responses were a little, um, enthusiastic...
    • Thanks to Toranth, chemical_art, Faulty Logic, tadrinth, TechSY730, onyhow, Winge, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • Post-responses will now never do wild rolls (the superterminal ones were already working this way, but not the others).
  • Post-response strength for the superterminal halved.
  • Non-superterminal post-responses now last half as long (and are thus spawn half as much total strength).
  • Base hacking spawn strength is now based on total HaP spent, rather than the current HaP balance. It was previously desired that keeping a high balance reduced the severity of the response, but ultimately that wasn't so much "less threatening" as "boring". Also, previously this allowed a later hack to have a less intense response than an earlier one; assuming the player grows in strength through the game (generally this is true) that wasn't helping interest level either.
  • Even if you've spent into negative HaP, the post-responses will not count the excess HaP spent or incur the normal exponential-pain penalty of a negative balance. The _during_ responses will still do those, but since it's possible to go from a positive balance during a hack to a radically negative one after, it seemed best to have the post-response to such a thing not be an auto-kill. The cost in that case is that you're unlikely to be able to hack again that game.
  • The spawn strength from non-superterminal hacks now scales properly with difficulty. Previously it did scale with difficulty, but the response on Diff 10 was only about 43% larger than the response on Diff 7. Now it follows the standard relationship between the difficulties.
    • But the rule from the last version where higher difficulty increased the number of wild-rolls has been removed, since the number of rolls will generally be higher now due to base-hacking-antagonism being based off HaP spent.
  • AI ships spawned by hacking responses are now normal threat again, rather than zombies, as the zombies were... well, really really stupid in their behavior and not nearly so threatening as they could have been. If this leads to more reclamation exploits (like originally triggered these being made zombies) then another solution can be pursued.
  • Now the what-kind-of-post-response-to-expect alert messages (for both superterminal and non-superterminal hacks) state the Strength of the expected post-response spawns, and have a mouseover tooltip explaining what that Strength number means.

Prerelease 7.025 Extermination Protocol MkI

(Released May 12th, 2014)

  • More refactoring for the normal wave code; now instead of just announcing X strength after Y seconds it accumulates Z strength per second (where Y*Z is pretty close to the old X), and only announces when it has enough for the wave size it wants.
    • It starts with enough strength for the first wave, and just waits until the normal first-wave time to release it.
  • Waves are now never smaller than 200 strength. That's only 50 triangle ships on low caps (20% more if fighters or missile frigates, 20% less if bombers), not very large, but it avoids the puny-wave-syndrome people were getting at AIP 10 even on some of the higher difficulties.
    • But with the new accumulation-based mechanic that also avoids the problem we had years ago where waves had a decent minimum size but you had to raise AIP quite a bit before it even caused any change to the wave behavior at all (because the result at AIP 10 was such a small fraction of the minimum size). Now the size won't go up for a while, but the frequency at which the waves come will increase fairly steadily from shortly after the start, until it passes the minimum strength at which the intervals will become fairly similar but the strength will increase.
  • Fixed a bug where AI units would still sometimes try to shoot at non-forcefield modules (which aren't valid targets nowadays).
  • Fixed a bug where AI units would still sometimes prioritize only-target-of-opportunity units (like enclave drones) when, for example, all other targets were covered by decoy drones. It's better for them to shoot the decoys than the enclave drones.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the report and save.
  • Enclave drones are now immune to insta-kill, mainly to get the ion cannons and whatnot to stop wasting their time shooting things that live at most 30 seconds.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a bug where the AI's threat-target-finding logic was not considering "neutral" planets that had human-controlled irreplaceables on them.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the report and save.
  • AI ships are now more deliberate about killing grav turrets that have ensnared them.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the suggestion.
  • Fixed the recently-introduced mechanic of "excess reinforcement strength lost to caps goes fills the Strategic Reserve and/or augments waves" to not cause desyncs. Sorry :)
    • Thanks to TechSY730, vigilo confido, Fleet, and Tssbackus for the reports and saves.
  • Many changes since 7.0 have favored the player. Many have also favored the AI, and the AI has also been made smarter. But overall the humans are now able to achieve a higher kill-to-death ratio than before, so in general all AI sources of strength (reinforcements, waves, CPAs, etc) have been buffed substantially at Diff 10 and in lesser ways down to Diff 7.3 (7 is basically untouched). If this is too much, we can back down to more of a middle ground next time.
    • Specifically, the buffs on 10 are as much as +50%, though reinforcements only got +25% there.
    • Thanks to... well, basically everyone who's had the temerity to keep winning games lately ;)
  • The AI's starship budget % in waves and reinforcements has been cut to about a third of what it was.
    • In addition to the reduction in budget for Reinforcements starships/guardians, the AI now has an 80% chance to choose guardians over starships when both are eligible, instead of 50%.
    • Thanks to Kahuna, Toranth, and many others for inspiring these changes.
  • Fixed some AI Loop errors that could occur when it was checking for putting ships into carriers.
    • Thanks to vigilo confido for the report and save.

Further Salvage Balancing

  • Salvage, since it was giving the player pretty ridiculous metal income particularly in superweapon games:
    • Max "orbiting scrap" (meaning salvage that hasn't been processed yet) on a planet is now 2 times the planet owner's resource cap. So max recovered from a single "donation" is (if on the homeworld) equal to your resource cap. Of course, since recovery begins during the battle it would be somewhat higher than that.
    • The rate at which orbiting-scrap is processed (granting the command station's efficiency % in metal, and the rest of the chunk being wasted) from 1%-per-second => 0.6%-per-second. In practice this means it went from about 230 seconds to "consume" 90% of a given amount of orbiting-scrap to about 380 seconds.
      • Hopefully this will avoid overly spiking your metal income rate, while also giving the vast majority of what you're going to get to you fast enough to actually shorten whatever refleeting or whatever you're trying to do.
    • Thanks to Winge, chemical_art, Kahuna, Faulty Logic, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • The AI's reprisals for fleet wipes still seem to not be causing enough "oh no!" moments, so those have been buffed again.

Further Carrier Balancing

  • Carriers:
    • Can now no longer fly through forcefields.
    • Now base their number of shots per salvo off the strength of the units they contain, rather than the count (which was previously adjusted for the cap scale, but not for the actual inherent strength of the units). So a fighter and a bomber will contribute the same, but a mkII fighter will contribute twice as much as a mkI fighter, etc.
      • In general they will now hit harder, but can't just fly through your ff nets as if they weren't there.
    • Attack Range from 3000 => 7000 because testing reminded us of one of the reasons it needed to be able to fly through forcefields to begin with: with 3000 range it couldn't get within firing range of key targets otherwise, particularly when radar jammers were in play.
    • To compensate for the range boost, damage-per-shot from 19.2k => 9.6k (and thus overall dps halved).
    • Thanks to Kahuna and others for inspiring this change.

Further Hacking Balancing

  • Fixed a bug where knowledge-extractor hackers would extract knowledge for one tick after creation before actually starting their 15-second countdown to actually working.
    • Thanks to RockyBst, silentdeth, and others for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug where the spawn strength of the AI responses to superterminal hacking wasn't factoring in AI Difficulty.
    • So these will be the same on diff 7, but are going to be a looooot nastier on higher difficulties now, though that's what feedback seemed to indicate was necessary anyway.
    • Thanks to Toranth for bringing this to our attention.
  • Now when a superterminal dies, it immediately does as many pulses as it did previously, again.
    • In other words, with every superterminal-tick you're writing a bigger and bigger "I can handle this" check, and when the superterminal dies... well, it's still just a short-lived response, but if you're not careful it may be you who's short-lived.
    • Thanks to Peter Ebbesen for inspiring this change.
  • Non-superterminal hacking now also has an short-term post-hacking response, but a less severe one:
    • For every 2 "ticks" of hacking response triggered by an active hack on the planet (i.e. 1 every 20 seconds, assuming just one hacking object at the time, or 2 every 20 seconds if there were two hacking objects), 1 second is put on to the post-hacking response clock.
    • Once the hacking stops, every second after that the post-hacking response clock counts down and triggers a "tick" of hacking response. So it will come in much faster than during the active hack, but not instantaneous as with the superterminal post-response.
    • The alerts window will tell you how many seconds of post-response you've got waiting for you (and remaining, once it starts).
    • The post-hacking response will not be multiplied by the presence of multiple hacking objects, so you don't have to scramble to scrap them all simultaneously when the hack ends, etc.
    • Thanks to Peter Ebbesen for inspiring this change.
  • On non-superterminal hacks the AI now gets an extra wild-roll per "tick" on Diff 8+, a second extra one on Diff 9+, and a third extra one on Diff 10+. Normally you just get 1 roll per 50 total hacking points spent.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.

Further Champion Balancing

  • Normal champion nemesis logic now includes the champ exos implemented for alt-nemesis.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring this change.
  • The alt-nemesis response's bonus from extra champions from +100% per extra champion => +33%.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • The alt-nemesis response's bonus from higher-mark champions from +100% per extra mark => +33%
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • The alt-nemesis response now "phases in" across the first two hours of the game, reaching normal levels at the two-hour mark.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • Alt-progress now gives all goodies as low as intensity 5 (higher intensity just scales up XP gain and the ship-caps of the splinter-faction starships), so that the lobby no longer implies you should crank it all the way to 9+ to get it all (and, with a matching nemesis setting, probably die horribly).
    • Thanks to Toranth and Peter Ebbesen for inspiring this change.

Further Warhead Balancing

  • Now when you build a lightning, armored, nuclear, or EMP warhead there is a delay before you can build any more of those warheads.
    • For EMPs this is 30 seconds per mark.
    • For the others listed above this is 60 seconds per mark.
    • Tachyons do not add to the delay, nor are subject to it.
    • Basically the result is that you can stockpile full caps of these without much difficulty (though there is the risk of them being shot at), but you can no longer flash-build more than one warhead to deal with an unanticipated threat.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the suggestion.

Prerelease 7.024

(Released May 6th, 2014)

  • Fixed a longstanding bug where it was impossible to reclaim any mkIV units unless you had advanced-factory capability (from holding or hacking).
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.
  • Changing the setting on Alt Champ Progress in the lobby now regenerates the map, since it can be the difference between the galaxy getting nebulae or not.
    • Thanks to Fleet Unity for reporting that this was not the case.
  • Super Hybrids will not try to spawn more often than every 10 minutes, in an effort to prevent the bug where multiple spawn simulataneously upon the death of another, and thus bypass the galaxy-wide-cap of 1.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for reporting that this was still happening.
  • Spirecraft are no longer immune to speed boosting, armor boosting, or munitions boosting.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring these changes.

Warhead De-Oops-ifying

  • Thanks to RockyBst, Faulty Logic, Fleet Unity, Draco18s, Aklyon, relmz32, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • Fixed a bug where the last patch made Armored Warheads cost 1 metal each. Sigh :)
  • All lightning, armored, and martyr total damage amounts have been halved.
  • Lightning Warheads and Spirecraft Martyrs (but NOT armored warheads) now have a maximum damage done to each individual unit caught in the blast:
    • Lightnings: 10M*mk.
    • Martyrs: 3.5M/10M/30M/50M/100M.
  • Armored warheads now cost 3*mk AIP, in return for still being able to one-shot H/Ks and golems and the like.
  • The Avenger is now immune to warhead/martyr damage.
    • And now packs a mini-mkI-lightning-warhead effect of its own, as if the nuke wasn't enough.
  • Units killed by Armored Warheads now do not generate salvage. It's all volatilized, you know.

Prerelease 7.023 So This Carrier And A MkIII Lightning Warhead Walk Into A Bar...

(Released May 5th, 2014)

  • The Tackle-Drone on-death explosion can now hit units that are normally immune to AOE (like the missile frigate).
    • The AOE is already pretty small in radius, and without this it's possible for AI forces (and sometimes human ones) to get unduly hung up pushing some lone missile frigate to the edge of nowhere but taking forever to actually catch up and kill it.
  • Now when an exo synchronizes with a CPA it is launched at full strength (rather than just 60% or whatever it's charged to), but in return puts that exo counter into "debt" so that it still takes the appropriate amount of time to recharge.
    • Since an exo can only synchronize with a CPA if it's at least 60% charged, this is more likely to have the exo "skip" the next CPA, though of course your mileage may vary.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring this change.
  • GCS's are now immune to radar dampening.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a bug where some alt-progress stats were carrying over into a new game if you hadn't closed the app since the last game.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the report and save.

Champion Alt-Progress Revisions

  • Just iterating on the new alternate mechanic based on feedback. Basically making this variable-intensity so you can get a simple relatively low-power champ for a "low cost" (in terms of AI response), but you can also choose to get all the champion bells and whistles in exchange for a much more potent response. But you can set the response separately if you're feeling cheesy or think that you've offset the advantages in other ways.
    • Thanks to chemical_Art, Aklyon, Toranth, Faulty Logic, ZaneWolfe, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • The Alt Champ Progress option has been moved from the Modifiers section to the Minor Factions section of the lobby, and made variable-intensity (0 to 10, 0 being off, 4 being default).
  • An Alt Champ Nemesis option has been added to the Minor Factions section of the lobby, and has the same intensity range.
  • The normal nemesis response logic for champions is now completely disabled when playing with alt-progress. So none of that business about caring about what hull size you've gotten at what AIP, etc.
  • Loading a save with the old alt-progress Modifier will translate that to 1/10 alt-progress and 1/10 alt-nemesis.
  • Alt-nemesis sends periodic champion-only exos that are somewhat similar mechanically to golem/spirecraft exos but also key off the number and size of champions, etc.
  • At intensity 5 and higher, alt-nemesis also periodically generates threatfleet nemesis champions.
  • XP gain in alt-progress is now multiplied by the setting's intensity.
    • XP-needed-per-level has been increased from 2000 => 5000, such that on intensity 3 you're gaining levels faster than you did in the previous alt-progress setting, but on intensity 2 you're gaining them slower, etc.
      • The current balance target is that by late/end-game on intensity 6 you'll have reached about level 60, by capturing 15 planets (45k K), 4 ARS's (2k K) and knowledge hacking one full planet's worth (3K k). 50k K * 6-intensity = 300k XP, 300k / 5k-per-level = level 60. Whether this balance target is in any way sane remains to be seen.
  • Now alt-progress grants 1 random new modular fortress type at unlock-sets 3, 6, and 8 if the intensity is 3, 6, and 8, respectively.
  • Now alt-progress spawns 1 random splinter faction large starbase near the first human home command station at unlock-sets 1, 2, 4, 5, and 7, and various intensities (9+ is required to get all five splinter factions).
    • These large starbases will spawn their foldouts for each human player as they would in a successfully completed nebula, thus granting metal income, energy generation, and the ability to construct the ships of those factions.
      • The ship cap for each of these splinter faction ship types is multiplied by (intensity/3), so if you have alt-progress set to 5, those caps will be multiplied by 1.67. This parallels how normal progress can give you multiple caps of each type by giving multiple reward-structures of the same faction.
        • In fact, normally you can only get about 9 caps of splinter faction starships in normal-progress (unless you turn on allow-duplicates, then it goes up to around 13). Here you can get somewhat over 16. This compensates somewhat for not getting the extra energy/metal of the duplicate starbases.
      • One advantage the alt-progress approach to splinter factions provides that normal-progress does not is the presence of those large starbases near your home command station. While they may not see much action (depending on your defensive setup), these starbases are formidable defensive structures in their own right.
  • Each level gained now contributes 10 points towards the next unlock-set. For reference: Unlock sets are gained every 100 points, and an ARS grants 100 points.
    • This way, even if mapgen puts all the major capturables several hops from your homeworld (which obviously didn't just happen in the developer's test game) you can still gain _some_ unlocks and eventually reach destroyer hulls if the progress intensity and/or knowledge coming in is high enough.

Carrier Revisions

  • Thanks to RockyBst, Toranth, Kahuna, Faulty Logic, Lancefighter, Eternaly_Lost and many other Carrier-haters through the years for inspiring this change.
  • Now when a carrier is fired upon, it passes that damage on to its contents. Basically as it takes fire you'll see its "number of units inside" counter tick down (while the carrier's health stays the same).
    • Especially entertaining with massed photon-lance assault.
    • Stuff dying inside the carrier still generates salvage according to the normal rules.
    • As before, once it hits zero contained ships the carrier itself dies.
  • Since there's no longer a danger of destroyed carriers spawning something even worse, carriers are now always autotargeted.
    • The toggle for enabling autotarget-carriers has been removed.

Warhead / Martyr Revisions

  • Basically we're moving from these being "can deal X damage to _any_ number of units that fit within the explosion radius" to something that's actually finite and therefore at least somewhat balanceable.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic, Faulty Logic, and Faulty Logic for inspiring these changes. Also Kahuna, Toranth, RockyBst, Mad Rubicant, Histidine, Draco18s, tadrinth, chemical_art, ZaneWolfe, and Lancefighter. For the curious, here's the thread.
  • Lightning Warheads:
    • Now when these deal damage to a target, that damage is deducted from the remaining power of the blast before moving on to the next target.
      • So if the warhead has a capacity of 1 billion damage and you detonate it in range of 2000 ships each with 1 million health, only half of those ships will be destroyed.
    • Damage from 800k*mk => 1B/3B/5B. Yes, the "B" means "Billion". It's a lot.
    • Explosion radius from 1500*mk => 10k/12.5k/15k. The upper end is pretty huge, but it costs 3 AIP a shot.
    • Now damages the lowest-hp units in range first, and works up from there. Carriers always come last.
    • Now show their explosion radius when attack ranges are being shown.
  • Armored Warheads:
    • Same changes as Lightning Warhead, except these damage the highest-hp units in range first, and work down from there. Carriers always come first.
    • AIP cost from 2*mk => 1*mk.
    • Now have cloaking.
    • Base HP from 20M => 200M.
    • Metal cost from "extortionate" => "very extortionate".
  • Spirecraft Martyr:
    • Same basic mechanic as lightning warheads, while retaining the ability to hit aoe-immune stuff.
    • Damage from 1M*mk => 350M/1B/3B/5B/10B. Spending Adamantite on a one-shot is pretty hardcore.
    • Explosion radius from 3100/3600/4100/4600/5100 => 10k/12.5k/15k/17.5k/20k. The upper end is pretty ridiculous, but again, Adamantite.
    • Now show their explosion radius when attack ranges are being shown.
  • AI Home Command Stations and GCS's are now immune to warhead/martyr damage (the Home Command Station was already immune to normal aoe, but not martyrs).

AI Threat Behavior Fixes/Improvements

  • Fixed a bug from the last month or so where threat/threatfleet/special-forces units controlled by the second AI player on a planet with no significant human presence would basically get stuck and not do their normal "which planet do I go to next?" logic.
    • Thanks to Andyroo and Faulty Logic for the reports and saves.
  • Fixed a bug where the recently added "make the AI willing to accept worse offensive odds if..." logic (for when a certain % of the human's total strength was engaged, and for when a certain % of the human's mobile strength was abroad) was actually making it more timid rather than more bold. Sigh :)
  • Fixed some "dancing" bugs with the recent "if have overwhelming local superiority, send excess threat elsewhere" AI logic. Also improved its responsiveness in general.
    • This isn't to say that you won't still see AI ships changing back and forth between going to a wormhole and attacking something in some cases, it's just that it will more often be because some chunk of AI or human strength entered or left that planet, thus changing the target balance of power, etc.
  • Fixed a bug where spirecraft with no actual attack power (and possibly other irreplaceable units with no actual attack power) were being considered as having a strength of zero by the AI, leading to inconsistencies in whether it considered those things worth leaving some threat behind to kill, etc.

Reinforcements Changes

  • Now each reinforced planet gets one large pulse (spread across all guardable structures) instead of 1-2 for the command station and 1-2 for each guard post (and it was even more if there was a troop accelerator or whatever). The overall strength of the reinforcements is similar to the previous version, though the math is somewhat different.
  • Now instead of a "running strength budget" that starts at zero at the beginning of the reinforcement cycle and is tracked for all the planets reinforced that cycle (so if one buys a Tackle Drone Launcher or whatever and goes negative, that negative had to be paid back by later planets in the same cycle before more could be bought), each planet tracks its balance for fleet-ship-reinforcements (much the same way as the recently added tracking for starship-reinforcements).
    • This is zero at the beginning of the _game_, and is never just discarded like the per-cycle one was. Not a huge difference in the end, but helps the model be more coherent and thus paves the way for some other changes that rely on the concept of an overall AI budget.
    • It also avoids some planets getting the short end because another planet is greedy. Now the planet buying some really expensive fleet ship will just have to pay it back itself, etc.
    • It now does similar tracking for the Experimental AI Type's special reinforcement ships, though this is a niche case.
  • Now when reinforcements are "capped", the amount of strength "lost" to the capping is instead deposited in that player's Strategic Reserve (if it's not already at max) or added on to the next non-reprisal wave.
    • Specifically, this applies to the rules where:
      • When it would normally reinforce more than 15 planets (+1 on Diff 8+, +2 on Diff 10), it just caps it at 15.
      • When AIP is greater than (Diff*Diff)*5, it's capped at that value for the reinforcement budget calculation.
      • There's one step in the budget calculation where the result is capped at 35 (this is hard to reach, would take something like 2000 AIP on diff 10.
      • When a planet has hit both its guardian cap and starship cap, its starship budget was not being used.
    • The general idea here is to preserve the idea that high-AIP should not result in the AI defensively stonewalling the player (unless it is a non-wave-sending AI like the Turtle, of course), but also avoid the existing situation where the "price" of AIP and taking planets actually went _down_ as these caps were being hit. Now the AI gets to spend that previously "lost" strength, but does so in a way that doesn't fundamentally improve its defenses (just fills the SR a bit faster) or throws an offensive punch at you via an existing mechanic that is relatively easy to deal with (augmenting normal waves) and get those ships off the board. Unless you get in over your head, of course. Not that any of you do that.

More Golem Balancing

  • All golems have had their repair cost halved. Not the cost to initially "repair" the "Broken Golem" into a live one, but rather the cost to repair damage to the live ones.
    • Thanks to chemical_art and Draco18s for inspiring this change. So this brings down that cost down to levels like they were before the recent activation-cost increases.
  • Hive Golem Wasps:
    • Base DPS from 140k => 250k (so 505k on normal combat style, etc).
    • Base Health from 2M => 3M.
    • This may be too much, but with all the guardian and guard post and such changes since the last major golem balance, this may be necessary.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the suggestion.
  • Armored Golem:
    • Base Health from 500M => 900M.
    • Shots per salvo from 10 => 20.
    • Again, this may be too much, but it's the sole "brawler" golem (that is, it _needs_ to get relatively close to operate, and thus faces intense danger) so extreme measures seemed indicated.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring this change.

More Spirecraft Balancing

  • The Spirecraft Translocator has been shifted down one asteroid "tier" (so MkI builds from Reptite rather tha Pysite, an the MkV build from Adaamantite rather than Titanite, etc).
    • Thanks to Toranth for the suggestion.
  • Spirecraft Translocator Shots-per-salvo from 20 flat => 20*mk.
    • The shot power still also scales by mark, so each mark is now twice as powerful as the previous one (though its health only increases linearly), since the cap of these shrinks with each mark and the rarity of the asteroids increases more than linearly with each tier.
    • Thanks to RockyBst and Aeson for inspiring this change.
  • Spirecraft Translocators are now eligible for inclusion in exos.
    • Though their exo costs are pretty high, reflecting the more-than-linear scaling.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the suggestion.

Prerelease 7.022

(Released April 30th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where the MkII-V Spirecraft Ion Blasters were still called by that name rather than Spirecraft Translocator.
    • Thanks to Fleet Unity for the report.
  • Fixed a memory leak in the previous version. Was able to crash the game with out-of-memory errors eventually.
    • Thanks to Napivo for the report and save.
  • Fixed a bug where a Nuclear Train detonation could cause an unhandled error.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the report and save.

Prerelease 7.021 Champion Alter-Ego

(Released April 29th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where Core Hunter/Killer Factories could be triggered under the "friendly unit died on neighboring planet" rule when that dying unit was actually not on a neighboring planet at all.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report and save.
  • Fixed a bug in the logging of Strategic Reserve contributions to a CPA (if it used some to make up an otherwise-short CPA it would double-report the earlier contribution from the SR).
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the report.
  • Now when launching a CPA, if it empties the galaxy of all guard ships and Strategic Reserve ships and STILL does not have enough to fill the specified number of ships, it starts freeing Special Forces ships for the attack.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a bug where spire shield guard posts could disappear when loading a save game under some circumstances.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the report.
  • Since the players seem to have very much gotten the better end of the Salvage mechanic, the AI now gets twice as much salvage from it as it used to.
    • Also, instead of waiting until it has enough to match an interval-1 wave (a relatively small one) it now waits until it has enough to match an interval-2 wave.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic, RockyBst, and others for inspiring this change.
  • The AI's salvage efficiency (based on difficulty, and nerfed during the first two hours of the game) is now applied when the salvage is gathered, rather than when it's trying to spend the salvage, as that could lead to salvage that wasn't enough to cause a reprisal gradually "growing" into enough during that first-two-hour period.
    • Note: when loading some older saves this may (somewhat ironically) cause the AI's stored amount of salvage to suddenly be enough for a reprisal. In some cases a large reprisal. Our apologies for any galactic exterminations this may cause.
  • Grav Drills and Grav Turrets are now officially immune to EMP. Their gravity effects were already persisting while EMP'd, so this is basically just a clarity fix.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for inspiring this change.
  • The AI's starship and guardian reinforcements now use a persistent budget (tracked per-planet) rather than basically getting one or the other for free per reinforcement until the maximum number of such units was reached (which was still better than the previous arrangement of it getting a free starship AND a free guardian each time, though overall it seemed to result in more starships).
    • To compensate, however, the amount contributed to the planet's starship/guardian fund is now a greater multiple of the fleet ship reinforcement strength sent there. So it has to pay for the things, but it's better able to do so now.
    • Thanks to TechSY730, Toranth, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Since the OPness is still quite strong with them, Neinzul Enclave Starship drone-spawn-interval from 5 seconds => 6 seconds.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the suggestion.
  • Orbital Mass Driver DPS nerfed by 20%.
    • Thanks to Kahuna and others for inspiring this change.
  • For the Spire Hammer's in-wave purposes, the Spire Capital Ships now have special costs somewhat higher than the costs for the Heroic's champions of the same "tier":
    • Destroyer: 350 points (compared to Shadow FF's 300).
    • Cruiser: 1250 points (compared to Shadow DD's 1000).
    • Battleship: 4000 points (compared to Shadow CA's 3500).
    • Dreadnought: 8000 points (compared to Shadow BB's 7000).
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic and Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • Gravity Turrets, since the higher-mark impact is still really quite dramatic:
    • Grav-beam range from 5k/7k/9k => 5k/6k/7k.
    • To compensate in part, health from 1,080,000*mk => 3M*mk.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring this change.
  • On Diff 7+, Now when the AI's normal-threat forces on a planet with no human non-mobile irreplaceables (command stations count for this, so this only happens on non-human planets) have more than 10 times the total local human strength, the AI tries to send the "excess" threat after a different target planet.
    • This helps its apparent intelligence when faced with obvious delaying attacks (like a jumpship dropping a small force on one side of the grav well, then switching it to the other side of the grav well when the AI gets close, etc, or just space docks pumping younglings out forever and ever).
    • Thanks to RockyBst for inspiring this change.
  • On Diff 7+, In a situation like the one mentioned above where the AI's local normal-threat forces are more than enough for the job, Threatfleet-proper ships will no longer stick around unless that's actually their target planet (which is unlikely unless it's the staging area, as it would not normally pick a target planet with no non-mobile irreplaceables).
  • Fixed a bug where Threatfleet ships would start towards attacking something on their planet, then stop moving altogether, then start moving towards a target again, then stop moving altogether, etc.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the save that let us finally find and fix this.
  • Fixed a bug where the Reprisal-Salvage mechanic was accumulating in tutorial games (since no normal waves are launched there, this caused erroneous alerts).
    • Thanks to snowhusky5 for the save where we discovered this.
  • Fixed a bug where the Tutorial waves were not actually launching.
    • Thanks to snowhusky5 for the report and save.
  • Fixed a bug where a Warp Gate Guardian on a human homeworld could cause index-out-of-bounds exceptions.
    • Arguably, if you have warp gate guardians on your homeworld you have more serious issues... but the game should probably at least let you see whether that is the case, rather than keeling over.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the report and save.
  • The "+!!!" setting in multiplayer is now basically just +10, rather than "run as fast as you can for 250ms then draw a frame" as that was actually slower than +9 in MP.
  • Fixed a bug where the foldouts for the advanced factory and advanced starship constructors did not have their buy categories properly set (to include all 5 marks, though only allowing construction of what you should be able to build, like the things they were foldouts of).
    • As a side effect, this bug made selecting those foldouts (or at least the starship one) cause array-index-out-of-bounds errors when it tried to initialize the menu with tons of buttons stacked up in a single column instead of spread out properly.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 for the report and save.
  • Fixed a longstanding desync bug where Dire Guardian Lairs on client machines would get an extra build point (if alerted) upon the client loading the data, thus leading to it doing certain logic 1 second before the host, thus causing a desync.
    • Thanks VERY much to TechSY730 and vigilo confido for the report and save. Reproducible cases for desyncs are hard to come by, so that helped a ton.
  • Fixed a bug where the recently added rule that "core guard post on-death exos now always spawn from that post's planet" wasn't really working at all.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the report.
  • Fixed a bug where Mobile Rally Points were not immune to tractors. The AI laments the loss of sheer trolling potential.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the report.
  • AI Implosion Guardians:
    • Implosion-power per shot from (1*mk)% => 0.25%/0.25%/0.5%/1%/2%.
      • The Dire one is based off the MkV stats but with 10 times as many shots; it now also has 2% per shot instead of 5.
    • The MkI's shots-per-salvo from 4 => 2.
    • Left the Guard Posts alone as those don't come in essentially-unbounded quantity, and are easier to notice and just deal with carefully.
    • Thanks to Toranth, Faulty Logic, TechSY730, and RockyBst for inspiring these changes.

Alternate Champion Growth Mechanic

  • Added a new optional Modifier to the lobby menu: "Alt Champ Progress". When enabled:
    • No nebulae are seeded. So no nebula scenarios, no nebula wormholes, etc.
    • Champions do not ever gain XP from killing units (including command stations and guard posts).
    • Champions gain XP as you gain Knowledge.
      • If there are multiple champions, each champion gains XP regardless of who gathered the knowledge.
      • If there are multiple knowledge-gathering players, each champion only gains XP the "first time" that knowledge is gathered on a planet. So if player 1 gathers 1500 out of 3000 knowledge on planet A and then stops, the champs will have gained 1500 XP. If player 2 then starts gathering knowledge on Planet A then the champ will only start gaining XP once player 2 has gathered more than 1500 there.
    • Champions gain unlocks as you capture or hack:
      • Advanced Research Stations - one round of unlocks each.
        • Each round will generally unlock a new champ hull type OR a new champ hull size, and also unlock a new module type. If no hull type or size is unlocked, it unlocks a second module type.
      • Advanced Factories and Advanced Starship Constructors - two rounds of unlocks each.
      • Fabricators, and Core Turret Controllers - once you've captured or hacked four of these, it triggers one round of unlocks.
    • Thanks to chemical_art, LintMan, Vinraith, Labfiend, Coppermantis, Chthon, TechSY730, and others for inspiring this addition.

Golem Rebalance (mainly buffs)

  • Thanks to RockyBst, Faulty Logic, and others for inspiring these changes.
  • Removed the self-attrition from all of them (except the Regen golem, which didn't have self-attrition).
  • Golems now generate about 10% as much salvage (for either side) as their metal cost would normally warrant, since they are abnormally expensive (by design) and thus tend to skew salvage counts. If this is too low or too high, please let us know.
  • Golems-Hard's response exos now accumulate about 25% faster.
  • In the past, each golem has been internally valued as roughly 3 caps of MkV ships. That would normally indicate, roughly, a Health of 240 million and a DPS (against favorable targets, which for golems should be basically whatever they can hit) of 9 million. In practice that's not what the stats look like. They may not really need to look like that, but in response to recent feedback that Golems are often excessively niche in utility, we'll try going with this.
  • Armored Golem had 500 million Health (effectively 2.5 billion, against non-armor-piercing stuff) and 2.5 million DPS. Trading DPS for durability is fine for its role, but it's quite debatable whether 2x, 3x, or even 4x durability is adequate compensation for a 73% DPS reduction. So:
    • Shots Per Salvo from 5 => 10 (giving 5 million DPS).
    • Base Metal Cost (influences cost to bring online) from 20 million => 40 million.
  • Artillery Golem had 100 million Health and 12.5 million DPS. Trading durability for DPS is also fine, but the 58% health loss for a 38% dps gain seems in practice to be a bit much. So:
    • Health from 100 million => 200 million.
    • Base Metal Cost (influences cost to bring online) from 16 million => 30 million.
  • Black Widow Golem had 200 million Health and 1,750,000 DPS. Trading durability _and_ DPS for vicious utility (engine damage and paralyzing tractors) is great, but the 16% reduction in health and 80% reduction in DPS is perhaps too much. So:
    • Health from 200 million => 250 million.
    • Base Shot Power from 70k => 210k (giving 5.25 million DPS).
    • Base Metal Cost (influences cost to bring online) from 20 million => 40 million.
  • Cursed Golem had 60 million Health and 1,600,000 DPS. The infinite range is definitely an advantage, and with its costs was basically a "poor man's golem" in some ways. But after Lyudmila's recent performance a promotion is in order:
    • Health from 60 million => 175 million.
    • Shots Per Salvo from 20 => 60 (so DPS up to 4.8 million DPS).
    • Energy Cost from 10k (100k on medium) => 15k (150k on medium).
    • AIP Cost to initially bring online (on medium) from 10 => 15.
    • Base Metal Cost (influences cost to bring online) from 6 million => 30 million (was previously relatively low due to higher self-attrition, which is now gone).
    • Can now be picked for exos.
  • The Regenerator Golem was left alone, since most of the specific-to-that-unit feedback (as opposed to general golem feedback) I've heard lately seems pretty favorable. It's niche, sure, but that one is basically supposed to be (whereas the ones above are basically main combatants). Further feedback is welcome, of course.
  • Hive Golem had 48 million Health and 50,000 DPS (from itself) and 140 _million_ DPS from a full load of wasps. But each wasp only has 150,000 Health, so the swarm tends to evaporate under heavy fire. And if the Golem itself gets in range of any significant enemy force, well...
    • Health from 48 million => 150 million.
    • Shots per salvo from 1 => 50 (so personal DPS is now 2.5 million; still pretty small compared to other golems but no longer trivial).
    • Wasp Health from 150 thousand => 2 million.
    • Base Metal Cost (influences cost to bring online) from 14 million => 30 million.
  • Botnet Golem had 100 million Health and (some absurd DPS that doesn't particularly matter: it only fires on reclaimables and reclaims 1 per shot in practice). Considering you just get the one, it could stand to be at least baseline durable.
    • Health from 100 million = > 250 million.
    • (metal cost was already 40 million, seems sufficient)

Partial Spirecraft Rebalance

  • Spirecraft Siege Towers have been re-imagined, from something like a very miniature armored golem (with somewhat outdated and thus low stats, to boot) to something like an outsized plasma siege starship.
    • Specifically, their individual health and attack power are balanced like a cap of the same mark of plasma siege starship, and obviously it uses the plasma siege ammo.
    • But it retains certain advantages of the old siege tower such as radar dampening, its armor rating, and its higher (than the plasma-siege) movement speed.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic, Draco18s, RockyBst, and many others who have mentioned the underwhelmingness of these for inspiring these changes.
  • The Spirecraft Ion Blaster has been re-imagined as the Spirecraft Translocator.
    • Individually balanced with health and DPS like a cap of same-mark Spire Railclusters.
    • But with greater range.
    • And the knockback effect (like a military command station, though not with such a range).
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic, Draco18s, RockyBst, and many others who have mentioned the underwhelmingness of these for inspiring these changes.
  • Spirecraft Shieldbearer health from 14M*mk => 25M*mk.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the suggestion.

Prerelease 7.020

(Released April 12th, 2014)

  • Fixed some recently introduced performance-hogs in the reinforcement code.
    • Thanks to nynja for the report and save of near-freeze situations resulting from this.

Prerelease 7.019 Oops MkII

(Released April 11th, 2014)

  • MkV Spirecraft Jumpships are now immune to Black Hole Machines.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a boneheaded mistake of mine in some of the recent AI work that made most AI ships behave as if no human ships were present (their autonomous targeting still worked, and their route-to-desirable-targets logic still worked, but their actual on-the-planet-fighting-now-what-do-I-do logic was basically "oh, I guess no one's here after all, where to next?").
    • The odd thing is how it still largely worked despite this, but it definitely led to some artificial stupidity.
    • Thanks to Draco18s, FaultyLogic, and many others of you for reporting various strangeness with the AI's attack behavior.
  • When considering whether it has enough strength to successfully attack a planet, the AI now considers nearby human mobile strength (up to 3 hops out).
    • If that human mobile strength is engaged by AI strength on the same planet, (2*local_ai_strength) is deducted from the amount that is "propagated" to other planets (can never make it negative, of course).
    • If that human mobile strength's planet is under immediate threat by adjacent waiting threatballs or incoming exo forces, that immediately threatening strength is deducted from the amount that is "propagated" to other planets.
    • For now none of this applies to the Threatfleet proper, but does apply to normal threat.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring this change.
  • When considering whether it has enough strength to successfully attack a planet, the AI now also considers certain galaxy-wide factors:
    • If more than about 2/3rds of the total human mobile strength in the galaxy is engaged (meaning matched by at least half as much AI strength) on AI planets, the AI is about 20% more eager to attack.
    • If X% of the total human strength in the galaxy (mobile and static) is engaged (matched one-to-one in strength, in this case) with AI strength on its planet, the AI is about (X/3%) more eager to attack (max 30% from this one factor).
    • For now none of this applies to the Threatfleet proper, but does apply to normal threat.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for inspiring this change.
  • Various other AI improvements. Hopefully without further bonehead-developer moments, but only one way to find out!
  • The Heroic AI's budget for champions-in-waves has been increased from 100% of the wave's fleet ship budget => 150% of it.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the suggestion.
  • The Heroic and Spire Hammer AIs, when buying their special champ or spire-capital-ship ships for waves, now have a 25% chance of skipping a tier they could otherwise afford.
    • Example: a Heroic that can afford Cruiser-level hulls has a 25% chance of spending it on Destroyer-level hulls instead, and a 6.25% chance of spending it on Frigate-level hulls.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the suggestion.
  • The core-guard-post on-death exos now always spawn on the planet the post died on, giving a mobile fleet a chance to deal with the exo before it moves on, rather than putting so much pressure on to split the mobile forces across attack and defense.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for the suggestion.
  • Remains Rebuilders now:
    • Prioritize rebuilding Energy Collectors above everything else (except command stations, of course).
    • Now strongly prefer objects within their current range over objects outside it.
    • Thanks to Toranth and RockyBst for the suggestion.

Prerelease 7.018 Troubleshooters

(Released April 7th, 2014)

  • Fixed a longstanding bug where the AI never actually picked any difficulty-gated guardian type (EMP, Self-destruction, Warp Gate) as a buildable type, when doing so randomly.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for the report.
  • It will no longer seed both Spire Archives on the same adjacent-to-core-planet planet.
    • Thanks to... this is another one where probably at least half of the community complained. You know you who you are ;)
  • Made several improvements to the logic used by AI Special Forces ships that somehow wind up on human planets or trapped such that they cannot reach the SF's current target planet without passing through human planets.
    • In general they should stay focused on their chain of wormhole hops so as to minimize engagement with human forces. They may loiter if the next planet in the chain is too heavily defended, to avoid being too easy to game into walking one at a time into an utter deathtrap. Not that any of you would do such a thing, of course.
    • Thanks to Vinraith and Master Cylinder Pants for the report and save leading to these changes.
  • The cost of heroic's wave-champions has been adjusted significantly to account for the actual strength of the units. Previously it was a bit... over-enthusiastic about sending multiple battleships in every wave.
    • Thanks to RockyBst and Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed an unintended consequence of the reinforcements logic where it could get stuck just buying a single starship for a whole reinforcement-cycle for the whole galaxy.
    • Instead it now mimics the wave logic in getting a certain portion of its fleet ship budget (on top of it) to buy starships.
    • But along with this, the guardian-purchase part of reinforcements is no longer a straight freebie and is now folded into that special starship (or guardian, now) budget. Each time it gets around to spending that budget it randomly picks between starships or guardians (if both are eligible).
    • Thanks to Toranth and RockyBst for the reports.
  • To make it harder to cheese the AI by popping a golem in and out of a system during a major attack (and thus drawing off a ton of enemy attention temporarily), the AI will now only check for those opportunities roughly every 45 seconds (tracked separately per planet).
    • Thanks to RockyBst for inspiring this change.
  • There's a bunch of expansion files that were updated since the first public versions of those expansions became available. Unbeknownst to me (Keith) those updates would apply to the steam version but not the version on our own site. A permanent solution may or may not require modifying a lot of the game's unit definitions to look for their assets in a different place, but for the meantime the updated stuff is included in this update.
    • Thanks to doctorfrog for the letting us know and for and the (very useful) merge report that highlighted the differences.
  • Special Forces:
    • The good news:
      • Special Forces Guard Posts no longer cause AIP-on-death, and are thus now autotargeted like normal guard posts. And there was much rejoicing. Probably.
      • The special forces spawn rate thus now no longer gains 5% max-strength-cap per special forces guard post outside AI territory (i.e. the ones you chose not to kill), but instead gains 2% for every non-AI planet. Since it seems that at least 50% of all AI planets gets a special forces guard post this works out in your favor overall.
    • The bad news:
      • The main special forces spawns now spend 5% of their strength budget on MkI Riot Control Starships.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for (quite unintentionally) inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.017 Ominous Rumblings

(Released March 31st, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where hacking an Advanced Factory or Advanced Starship Constructor would cause a "fabricator hack" cost as well as the cost for hacking the advanced constructor itself.
    • Thanks to Atomikkrab, chrism, Jade E, Soyweiser, Cinth, and others for reporting.
  • Sabotage hacking cost base back down from 10 => 5 (had been 2 until recently).
    • Thanks to Toranth for the suggestion.
  • Since the Reprisal mechanic has made human fleet wipes mean a lot more, Black-hole-machine AIP-on-death from 10 => 5.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • Enclave Starship energy cost from 25k/30k/35k/40k => 25k flat, since their power is now linearly scaling from the recent change, and other starships use a flat energy cost.
    • Thanks to Histidine for the suggestion.
  • Minor-faction units (those actually controlled by minor factions, not by the human player or AI player) now generate salvage if they die on a human player planet. Never for the AI, as otherwise they could generate offensive AI ships without human player involvement.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 and Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • The wave-substitution exos (Exotic and Vicious Exotic AI types) now use the new way of computing the budget it "would have gotten" from the normal starship component.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • The special wave components (Mad Bomber's extra bomber starships, Raider's extra raid starships, Experimentalist's experimentals, Support Corps' support ships for the other AI's waves, Spire Hammer's spire capital ships, and Heroic's champions) are now bought via strength budget (an extra amount equal to a specified percentage of the wave's fleet ship budget, on top of everything else, like starships) rather than on the previous ad-hoc count methods.
    • These are still not included in Reprisal waves, in a rare gesture of holding back.
  • Fixed some bugs in the Reprisal mechanic where the AI's salvaged-metal count could encounter an arithmetic overflow.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the logs that brought this to light.
  • Waves now prioritize the highest-strength units to be deployed "loose", if there are so many that a carrier is required.
  • Fixed a bug in the wave announcement text where the number it gave for starships was actually the number of distinct types of starships.
    • Along the way, also fixed the bug where the first number of ships in the announcement was actually the grand total of all ships in the wave, rather than just the non-starship part.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report and save.
  • Similar to the recent work done on the wave code, the reinforcement code has now been thoroughly refactored to ease future work.
    • The overall impact of reinforcements shouldn't be changed very much by all this, though changes may come in later versions. But there are some bug-fixes and possibly some new bugs that may impact things. If something seems off please use the Reinforcement Logging setting to get the data we can look at.
  • Now when a planet's three reinforcement ship-types are selected, it tries much harder to pick three different ship-types.

Prerelease 7.016

(Released March 28th, 2014)

  • Now when an AI player has enough salvage for a Reprisal (but hasn't launched it yet), the alert box displays a numeric Warning Level telling the player about it (with a mouseover tooltip explaining what it means).
    • Thanks to TechSY730, Chthon, and LordSloth for inspiring this change
  • Fixed a bug in the last release that made all enclave starships only launch mkI drones. Whoops.
    • Thanks to SapphireSage for the report.
  • Cargo trains in the Astro Trains plot now:
    • Don't spawn unless the plot intensity is >= 5 (though any already spawned in old saves won't be removed retroactively).
    • Don't do the "delivery" logic (which contributes towards that AI getting new toys) if their random pathing picks a station on the planet they're already on.
    • Thanks to Draco18s for inspiring these changes.
  • Previously each wave would get a "freebie" starship (or starships, on higher difficulties) of the appropriate tech level. Some attempt was made to scale this by AIP but in general the number of starships wouldn't increase in anything like proportion with the rest of the wave. Nor would it be good to go from 1 starship in an AIP 10 wave to 10 starships in an AIP 100 wave (well, it wouldn't be good for the human).
    • Now each AI wave gets a supplementary "starship budget" equal to a quarter of its fleet-ship budget (a Starship Commander AI just gets a starship budget equal to its fleet-ship budget), and buys starships with that. Early on that just means one starship. Later on when the waves get large enough that means more than one starship.
  • Removed an old wave-calc rule that was applying a second-tech-level-based multiplier to the effective "cost" of buying a unit for a wave, on top of the fact that the strength cost already factors in the tech level. This removal will actually increase the effective cost of mark 1 ships for waves, while decreasing (to a lesser degree) the cost of higher-mark ships. This also notably simplifies the wave code for future improvements.

Prerelease 7.015 Cleanup, Aisle 3

(Release March 27th, 2014)

  • Neinzul Enclave Starship drone production:
    • Pulse interval from 10/9/8/7 seconds => 5 seconds.
    • It used to be that each pulse was 8 drones (2 of each "flavor", needler, laser, mlrs, missile) of mkI, PLUS 8 more of mkII if the enclave was mkII+, PLUS 8 more of mkIII if it was mkIII+, PLUS 8 more of mkIV if it was mkIV. It now only spawns drones of the enclaves's own mark level (so the mkIV gets 8 mkIV drones per pulse, not a total of 32 mkI/II/III/IV drones).
    • It's great to have these be powerful and fun, but the higher mark ones were scaling in power way faster than linearly (partly due to a historical association with turret tech to get the higher mark drones, iirc, but that requirement is long-gone). So some kind of wrangling these into sanity was necessary.
    • The mkI was actually doubled in power by this, and the mkII is roughly 20% stronger. The mkIII is roughly 20% weaker overall, and the mkIV is a bit more than half as strong as it used to be.
    • If further adjustments (up or down) are needed, please let us know.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic and others for inspiring this change.
  • Trying another iteration on hacking costs based on feedback:
    • Research Redirection first-hack-cost from 50 => 35.
    • Fabricator Hacking first-hack-cost from 20 => 30.
    • Design Corruption first-hack-cost from 30 => 20.
    • Sabotage first-hack-cost from 2 => 10.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic and others for inspiring these changes.
  • Fixed a bug where the Dimensional Prisons in one of the nebula scenarios were not spawning ships when automatically self-scrapped.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the report.
  • Fixed a bug where a new list of "ship designs the player team has downloaded via hacking" was not being properly cleared when a game was exited. Not a huge deal unless you then try to play a multiplayer game before quitting the app; in that case it could conceivably lead to a desync.
  • Fixed a bug where the Lightning Torpedo first said "CanBeTransported = false" and then further down said "CanBeTransported = true". Cute, but wrong. It's now just false, so the things should finally no longer be loadable into a horde of transports for "hello AI Homeworld, wouldn't you like a new sun?" tactics.
    • Thanks to alocritani and Faulty Logic for reminding us that this was still possible.
  • Rebuilding a unit that costs more than 500,000 metal (among rebuildables this is mainly the fortress line) now causes that unit to come back at 1% health instead of 50%. Previously it was possible to start one, get it killed at basically-no-metal-invested, then rebuild it to get it all the way up to 50%. And thus either get a cheaper fortress or a pile of free metal from scrapping it.
    • Thanks to Faulty Logic for reminding us this was still a possible exploit.
  • Fixed a bug where it was possible to multi-place... command stations.
    • Thanks to TheOverWhelming and Faulty Logic for the report and save.
  • Fixed a bug where all 3 Showdown CPAs were using the final-cpa flag.
    • Thanks to Toranth, vigilo confido, and others for reporting.
  • Fixed a bug in the final stage of the Showdown where a Fortress King AI would not have its (special-type) home command station replaced with a GCS.
    • Thanks to HTL2001 for the report.
  • The bonus-ship-selection window in the lobby now has a "(Change To Random)" button, which changes that planet's bonus ship to a different random pick.
    • Thanks to Lancefighter for the suggestion.

More Salvage Revisions

  • The salvage-reprisal waves now:
    • Are decoupled from normal waves.
      • So it doesn't impact the timing of those normal waves at all anymore; previously they kind of hijacked the whole normal-wave mechanic if you stayed on the offensive.
    • Aren't "full set of normal waves + salvage strength" anymore, instead it's just the salvage strength (plus the normal freebie starship(s) but NOT any AI-specific freebies like Spire Hammer capital ships).
    • Only launch when that AI player has enough salvage strength to at least equal a normal wave.
    • Thanks to LintMan, Toranth, and TechSY730 for inspiring this change.
  • Removed the rule where an AI player had to wait 10 minutes after announcing a reprisal wave before announcing another (there's still an effective minimum interval of 3 minutes due to another rule).
    • Now that they don't include full sets of normal waves the delay is less important, and indeed could lead to much-larger-than-anticipated salvage-reprisal waves due to having more time in which to accumulate casualties.
  • The AI's effective salvage is now multiplied by Min(1,(current_game_time/2_hours)).
    • So At 12 minutes into the game, its salvage only counts for 10% of its full value.
    • But at 60 minutes into the game, that salvage will be up to 50% of its full value.
    • And at 2 hours onward it's just full value (before the difficulty-based multiplier).
    • The overall effect is to prevent the mechanic from requiring an inordinate amount of early-game defenses just to deal with the fallout from early-game casualties.
    • Thanks to Toranth and TechSY730 for inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.014

(Released March 25th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where scrapping distribution nodes wouldn't actually give you the resources (this probably also impacted zenith reserves).
    • Thanks to Labfiend for the report.
  • Fixed a bug where there was a cause-of-death that was checking for salvage despite the ship's CurrentPlanet being null (leading to null exceptions, naturally).
    • Thanks to ussdefiant for the report and save.
  • Fixed some confusion with the design-downloading/design-corrupting restrictions. Previously you could not download and corrupt on the same planet, but the server hit by the (first) attack would stick around. So it looked like you could do the other one but it just wouldn't start the process. Now either downloading or corrupting will destroy all the servers on the planet (and remove those designs from anywhere else in the galaxy), to make it obvious that doing the one has prevented the other.
    • Along with this, corrupting a design now applies to both AI players.
    • Thanks to Cyborg and Kahuna for inspiring these changes.

Prerelease 7.013 Revised Salvage

(Released March 24th, 2014)

  • Made the game _slightly_ less aggressive at reclaiming space left in various lists (requires that there be at least 100 reclaimable spots in a list before it trims, instead of trimming if there's even 1 spot empty).
    • This seems to increase overall footprint by a couple dozen MB but may help prevent the dreaded "too many heap sections" crash (i.e. the aggressive trimming may be fragmenting the heap or something like that).
    • If you seen an increase or decrease in either OutOfMemoryException crashes or too-many-heap-sections crashes, please let us know :)
  • Adjusted the new +/- speed scale so that +1 through +5 span the same range of speeds that +1 through +3 did in the previous version, while +6 through +9 spans the same range of speeds as +4 through +9 did in the previous version (same deal on the negative side of the scale). This gives back some of the granularity that used to exist at the lower settings.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 for inspiring this change.
  • Increased the max number that can be put in the per-control-group resource-suspend field from about 2 million to about 500 million (which is significantly beyond the new theoretical max).
    • Thanks to Physical Original for the report.
  • The wave logic has been majorly refactored (again) for ease of working with in the future. The advanced-logging of it is also a lot more clear.
    • In general this shouldn't impact the size of waves (or reinforcements, since some of that logic used to be handled by the same functions, though is no longer) but there may be some shifts from bugs fixed and such during the process.
  • During the 5+ years since the game's development, over 90 distinct "causes of death" for ships have worked their way into the code. Different ones did different parts of the death logic (do I show an explosion particle, do I check for reclamation, do I check for regeneration, do I immediately get removed from the main ship list or do I wait until the common removal loop, etc), which was fine. But not all of them did these steps in the same order, which was rather a problem for things like "make reclaimed ships drop no salvage" as it wasn't consistent whether reclamation was checked (and therefore known) before the salvage check.
    • Well, now the vast majority of those causes (and all of them that do anything like reclamation checking) have been pulled into a single "Die()" method that ensures the same logic order from cause to cause (though different causes still pick which steps to actually do).
    • The potential for bugs here is fairly high, but in testing it's working just fine. Please let us know if you find problems.
  • Oh, and just one more minor change: you can now right-click a starting-location planet in the lobby to change its bonus ship type (via a list that pops up).
    • In the past we've firmly held the line against this request in the interest of promoting variety of bonus ship types. If you never use half the ships in the game you just aren't getting the full value. That's still a valid concern but ultimately the measures used to achieve that had a very simple (and very tedious) workaround: keep rolling seeds until you get what you want. Not only have we been working to minimize "player trades wall-clock-time for X" in the game, but this particular part isn't even _in the game_. Ultimately it is best that the game not start fighting you in the lobby.
    • So either the forced-variety stance (for the in-the-lobby stuff; your choices are still very situationally limited in-game) needs to become effective (just give random bonus ships all the time, preventing workaround-by-tedium) or it just needs to let you pick.
    • All that said, the default behavior is exactly the same, so a new player isn't overwhelmed by picking from 50+ different bonus ship types. It only drills down if you ask it to.
    • Previously the right-click action was used to deselect a planet you had selected; now it just toggles whether you've selected it. The functions for "select all starting planets" and "deselect all starting planets" continue to work as before (the latter using right-click for its mouse part).
    • Thanks to Cyborg, chemical_art, Qatu, Toranth, Kahuna, LintMan, Orelius, Draco18s, and many others throughout the years for inspiring this change.

Salvage Revisions

  • Fixed a bug where salvage-reprisal waves would often try to apply the salvage strength to buying more starships. While cute, this would often not result in any additional units being added, until the numbers get quite high.
  • A salvage-reprisal wave will now readjust the "how long did the AI decide to wait to launch this wave?" wave-size-multiplier to account for the new time it's actually being announced.
    • But it will still be at least a normal-sized wave plus salvage, even if it's really soon after the previous wave.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 for inspiring this change.
  • Reclaimed ships (due to reclamation damage from parasites or whatever) no longer generate salvage for anyone.
    • Thanks to Chthon for the suggestion.
  • Fixed a bug where the "has it been 10 minutes since the last reprisal wave?" counter was not being serialized with a save game, such that a reprisal wave that was "waiting" for the 10 minute timer would immediately launch if you saved and then reloaded the game.
    • Thanks to RockyBst for the report.
  • Zombie ships dying on AI planets no longer generate salvage.
    • Thanks to ZaneWolfe for the suggestion.
  • Previously player ships dying on neutral planets (planets with no command station at all) would give salvage to the AI. While this is often fine it's also very punishing when the planet was the player's just a moment ago and now there's a huge pile of casualties during the overrun, etc. Also problematic in other cases. Now player ships dying on neutral planets only give salvage to the AI if there's at least one normal (i.e. does NOT include Special Forces Guard Posts, and does NOT include Wormhole Guard Posts though they wouldn't still be there anyway) AI guard post left on the planet. So once you clean an AI planet the AI never gets salvage from there ever again.
    • Thanks to Toranth for pointing out the problem and LordSloth for suggesting keying off the guard posts.

Prerelease 7.012

(Released March 15th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where the Economy tab of the Stats window would throw errors and generally get you stuck.
    • Thanks to Aklyon for the report.

Prerelease 7.011 Salvaged Resources

(Released March 15th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where starting a game with Shark-B enabled (as the only AI Plot enabled, most likely) would cause client-receiving-data errors right off the bat.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for the report.
  • Finally fixed an ancient bug (since the Unity port) where moving the mouse (and various other seemingly unrelated hardware/software events) would actually increase the framerate of the sim (the graphical framerate would be unaffected).
    • This involved using a fundamentally different method of timing for the sim, so please let us know if something broke, but it looks like it's working just fine.
    • Thanks to... goodness, a lot of people have reported this over the years. Thanks to everyone :)
  • To retain the ability to get "extra hyper speed" (previously done by setting the performance profile to extremely-low, the speed to +10, and moving the mouse like crazy), the + and - speed settings have been reimplemented along a different pattern:
    • Previously they added and subtracted fixed amounts from the "fixed frame rate" of the sim. Now they no longer do that.
    • Now a -1 speed causes sim-frames to happen half as frequently, a -2 causes sim-frames to happen one-third as frequently, etc.
    • Similarly, a +1 speed causes sim-frames to happen twice as frequently, a +2 causes sim-frames to happen three times as frequently, etc.
    • Finally, +10 speed has been repurposed as "+!!!" speed. It actually tells the game "before every drawn frame, run as many sim frames as you can physically cram into 250 milliseconds". This results in a very choppy visual experience but it does the job of moving the sim along about as fast as the machine physically can.
      • Note: if you're already in such a heavy simulation that you're getting 4fps or worse, this generally won't speed things up at all, it's already going full bore.
      • Also, in multiplayer you'll probably not be able to get very fast hyper-speeds due to latency between the machines keeping in sync. All machines must remain in lockstep or it'd desync all over the place.
    • Thanks to Toranth and others for inspiring the +10 bit particularly.

Hacking

  • Now that hacking has come far enough along and is generally well-received (though still in need of much tuning), the proposed combination of Metal and Crystal into just the Metal resource has been implemented, and so Hacking has moved up from the alert box to the main resource bar.
    • Basically everything that had metal and crystal numbers previously now just has a metal number (for costs, production, etc).
    • The cost of the metal harvester upgrades has been doubled to reflect that now you're upgrading ALL your harvesters, not just part of them.
    • An exhaustive search through all the tutorial logic, text files and such was done to reflect the fact that crystal is gone, but if we missed something please let us know!
    • Thanks to Tridus, chemical_art, LaughingThesaurus, DrFranknfurter, Eternaly_Lost, Shrugging Khan, TechSY730, tmm, and others for inspiring this change.

Metal Storage

  • The minimum stored-metal cap was increased from 999,999 to 2,000,000 due to the combination of metal and crystal.
  • Previously your stored-metal cap was always the same regardless, and this contributed to long refleeting times (despite a strong economy) in the mid and late game because your resource production and consumption had increased but your storage had not. This was particularly true of Fallen-Spire games, but even outside that it was causing problems. So:
    • Each command station now provides metal storage:
      • Home Command Stations provide 2 million (so at the start of a 1HW game you just have that 2M, it's not 2M on top of the minimum).
      • Econ Command Stations provide 100k/200k/300k at mk 1/2/3.
      • Logistics Command Stations provide 60k/120k/180k.
      • Military Command Stations provide 30k/60k/90k.
      • Warp Jammer Command Stations provide 50k.
    • In addition, each Spire City Hub (Fallen Spire campaign) provides 1 million.
    • Note: metal storage is per-player, so in an MP game if you just have one HCS you still only get 2M storage even if one of your partners owns half the map.
    • Thanks to Fealthas, Diazo, Tridus, Darloth, tadrinth, Shrugging Khan, LordSloth, Qatu, Cyborg, Toranth, Draco18s,

Salvage

  • Fleet wipes still sometimes lead to long periods of both low-player-action and low-danger (and thus low-interest), so Salvage has been introduced to both reduce the period of low-player-action and to avoid it being a low-danger situation while still leaving the overall pacing in player control.
    • Thanks to Diazo, Draco18s, Cyborg, Qatu, Toranth, Draco18s, chemical_art, Eternaly_Lost, Kahuna, TechSY730, LordSloth, Fealthas, Faulty Logic, Tridus, Volatar,
  • Now when an AI-controlled unit dies on a player-controlled planet it leaves a certain amount of invisible "Salvage" behind, proportional to the metal cost of the unit.
    • Minor faction units don't leave salvage.
  • On player-controlled planets, the command station collects a certain amount of the salvage each second and convert it back into usable metal.
    • The amount per-second is about 1% of the total remaining salvage (minimum 100), multiplied by the station's salvage efficiency:
      • Econ command stations have 5/10/15 % efficiency at mk 1/2/3.
      • Military command stations have 4/8/12 % efficiency.
      • Logistics command stations have 10/20/30 % efficiency.
      • Warp Jammer command stations have 10% efficiency.
      • Home command stations have 50% efficiency (meaning that an attack that doesn't get stopped until your actual homeworld gives a _lot_ more metal than elsewhere).
    • So if you have a mkII econ station with 100,000 salvage floating around, the next second you'll gain 100 extra metal that second and 900 of the salvage will just disappear. Whereas on your homeworld you'd gain 500 extra metal that second and 500 of the salvage would disappear.
    • You can view which of your planets have orbiting salvage, how much, efficiency and rates etc on the Metal tooltip on the resource bar at the top of the screen.
  • Now when a player-controlled unit dies on a non-player-controlled planet (so AI-controlled or neutral, but NOT the nebulae champions can get into), an AI player is given that unit's metal value in salvage to use for a reprisal wave.
    • Scouts do not contribute.
    • Minor-factions do not contribute.
    • Units still being built (turrets, if you build turrets on enemy planets, etc) do not contribute.
    • Scrapped units DO contribute.
    • The actual salvage value the AI gets to use is difficulty-based:
      • Diff 7: about 35%
      • Diff 8: about 50%
      • Diff 9: about 70%
      • Diff 10: all of it
    • Then the Metal is translated into Strength at the ratio of a MkI Bomber's metal cost and strength.
    • On AI planets the controller gets the salvage, on neutral planets the game picks one of the AI players to give it to.
  • The reprisal announces about 3 minutes after the first bit of salvage comes in, and includes all the salvage collected during that time, plus a normal wave (basically it just schedules the next wave early and throws in the salvage units on top).
    • The reprisal won't announce if the total salvage available is lower than about 100-strength worth, to prevent really tiny casualties from triggering the mechanic.
    • After announcing a reprisal wave, that AI player has to wait at least 10 minutes before announcing another.
  • The overall impact of both sides of the new salvage mechanic, hopefully, will be to set up a situation where:
    • When you throw a fleet at the AI, your casualties are significant. Not catastrophic, but meaningful. And a complete fleet wipe can be genuinely dangerous, thus costing more than just time spent rebuilding.
    • But this new form of AI attack still doesn't take control of the pace away from the player, because it only happens when the player takes the initiative (and is fairly minor unless the player takes high casualties).
    • When the AI "throws the ball back" this way, it not only gives you something to do during the rebuild, but if you survive you likely have a significant economic boost (and thus shorter rebuild times).
    • In addition to all of that, whenever the AI is hitting you hard for whatever reason you have an opportunity to collect resources and hit it right back.
  • This will likely have a fairly profound impact on balance so much iteration is likely needed. In-house MP testing gave very reasonable results for the early/mid-game on 7/7 but that's really just a proof-of-concept. Some specific caveats to watch out for:
    • Several units whose metal costs were previously irrelevant have been updated to work with the salvage mechanic (Hunter-Killers, etc) but if you see a unit give an off-the-wall (low or high) amount of salvage please let us know!
    • It's entirely possible that, combined with the high output of command stations and upgraded harvesters, the econ game will be simply too generous to the player. That said, we didn't want to pre-emptively nerf-hammer the standard econ sources (particularly since this may just mean econ techs become less always-taken, which would be great). So just let us know how the metal-income balance feels.
    • It's also entirely possible that the AI's reprisals will be vastly too strong (or too weak) in some situations. It looked fine in basic testing but there's a lot of cases out there. If it goes bonkers let us know.
    • It's intentional that player units dying on player planets do not give salvage to the player, and that AI units dying elsewhere do not give salvage to the AI. That was tested but ultimately it has much larger repercussions than desired.

Prerelease 7.010 Oops!

(Released March 12th, 2014)

  • Fixed a bug where the alert types on the per-planet controls window used the name string instead of the description string for the mouseover tooltip.
    • Thanks to Joubarbe for the report.
  • Fixed a bug where the Mercenary Fighter was using the normal Fighter's description.
    • Thanks to Joubarbe for the report.
  • Units that provide cloaking-boost (Eyebots, Cloaker Starships, Scouts... that's mostly it) now continue to provide that even while in stand-down mode.
    • Thanks to Kahuna for the report.
  • Fixed a bug in recent versions where using certain hacking units (sensor hack, for instance) could corrupt some saves.
    • Thanks to roberto_melfra, hellgnomo, Zombiestocker, crimsonknight3, eriksr, and RockyBst for the reports and saves on this.
  • Fixed a bug in recent versions where using multiple sabotage hackers on the same planet could lead to a unhandled errors if there weren't enough targets for the sabotage hackers to blow up.
    • Thanks to alocritani for the report.

Prerelease 7.009

  • Fixed a bug where 7.008 wasn't reading in some recent saves correctly (looking for "True" or "False" instead of "1" or "0" on some of the "has this planet had this hack before" flags), causing those saves to not be playable.
    • Thanks to Zair for the report and save.

Prerelease 7.008 More Dirty Tricks

  • Spirecraft Scouts no longer count as "major weapons" (like all other spirecraft) for the purpose of alerting planets. So in general they shouldn't cause much alert.
    • Thanks to TechSY730 and many others for inspiring this change.

Hacking, Round 3

  • Added new type of placeable for the Hacker: Sabotage Hacker
    • In-game description:
      • Only works on a planet with an intact AI command station, but hacks into that station's network to destroy an important AI-controlled structure on the planet. Eligible targets include fortresses, forcefields, ion cannons, mass drivers, warhead interceptors, armor inhibitors/boosters, blackhole machines, distribution nodes, Zenith reserves, interplanetary munitions boosters, raid engines, alarm posts, radar jammers, gravity drills, troop accelerators, and AI Eyes.
      • If more than one eligible target is present on the planet, the one closest to the hacker will be destroyed. If multiple sabotage hackers are used, each will destroy a separate target.
      • The AI will notice the hacking in progress and respond against your units both on that planet and nearby.
      • NOTE: Successfully destroying a unit via sabotage reduces your Hacking-Progress by 2. Each hack after that costs 1.5x the previous.
  • Added new type of placeable for the Hacker: Sensor Hacker
    • In-game description:
      • Only works on a planet with an intact AI command station, but hacks into that station's network to disrupt the entire local AI sensor net. This grants all human ships on the planet the normal cloaking ability and suppresses all AI tachyon sources. All normal "must recharge cloak after firing" rules still apply. In addition, all AI cloaked/camouflaged units are revealed for the duration of the hack.
      • The hack takes 30 seconds to start, and lasts for 35 seconds. Further sensor hacks during that time (by the original hacker or another one) simply refresh the duration, but also trigger the hacking-progress cost again.
      • The AI will notice the hacking in progress and respond both on that planet and nearby.
      • NOTE: Successfully performing a sensor-hack reduces your Hacking-Progress by 10. Each hack after that costs 1.5x the previous.
  • Fixed a bug where the hacking response logic that was supposed to trigger a 30-second wave against the planet being hacked would instead do warp-anywhere logic if that particular planet was ineligible for normal waves. Counterwaves are valid hacking responses too (at a certain point) but are supposed to give 4 minutes warning.
    • Thanks to Zeyrun, Eternaly_Lost, and others for reporting.

Prerelease 7.007

(Released July 8th, 2013)

  • Fixed a bug in the last version preventing knowledge gain.
    • Thanks to MaxAstro for the report.

Prerelease 7.006 Design Meddling

(Released July 8th, 2013)

  • The AI's base response to hacking is now based on AIP - HackingProgress, so that your early hacks are basically always easy, and having surplus HaP generally helps. Hopefully this won't make things too easy but the alternative has been fairly, um, "startling" to players doing their first hack of a game at 300 AIP or so :)
    • Thanks to LintMan, ZaneWolfe, chemical_art, Tridus, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Each hacking response is now limited to 100 wild-rolls even if the response gets really high, to help avoid effectively infinite-loop situations.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.
  • The HaP cost of each hacking operation is now 1.5x the previous of that kind, instead of 2x.
    • Thanks to Toranth, TechSY730, chemical_art, madcow, and others for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a bug where the tabs for building Protector Starships or Spire Corvettes would not show up at Starship Constructors if you'd hacked the corresponding core fab (but had no other access to that bonus type).
    • This should also make hacking core turret controllers work, though that isn't something we've intentionally included in the existing fab hacking yet so it may have other issues.
    • Thanks to GP_Trixie for the report and save.
  • Re-fixed a problem from previous officials where for some subset of users the Fallen Spire Shard Reactor close-zoom graphic is 256x254, causing sprite errors when viewed in close zoom or in the ship-design window.
    • Thanks to Skyswimsky and rylen for the report.
  • Knowledge gathering in general no longer requires supply (normal knowledge gatherers still require the absence of an AI command station), since there are now other very powerful deterrents to the "knowledge-hack the entire galaxy" approach.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.
  • Orbital Mass Drivers now have the health of a mkI arachnid post and the DPS of a mkIII one (with no change to rate of fire). Both changes are significant buffs.
    • Thanks to Spikey00, Toranth, onyhow, Histidine, krieger, Tie-Viper, Tridus, Ozymandiaz, and others for inspiring this change.

More New Forms Of Hacking

  • Added new type of AI structure to the "Data Center" family: Design Backup Server
    • In-game description:
      • This server houses some of this AI's backups for one or more ship designs.
      • Redundant backups elsewhere make destroying this futile, and it self-destructs if the command station is destroyed to prevent tampering. While the station stands, however, you may use a Hacker to either propagate a corrupted version of the design(s) (preventing this AI from building more for MkI-MkIV purposes, Core R-and-D is handled via an isolated network) or download a master copy for your own use.
      • If either hack is performed successfully, the server will lock down and you will not be able to access it further for either purpose.
    • The actual types "stored" there are displayed in the server's direct mouseover and on the new galaxy display mode for the backup servers.
    • Thanks to Tridus and madcow for inspiring this.
  • Added new type of placeable for the Hacker: Design Corruptor
    • In-game description:
      • If placed on the same planet as one of the AI's Design Backup Servers, this device can corrupt that AI's copies of the design(s) stored there and prevent further fabrication for use in this galaxy.
      • Please note: if the command station is destroyed, the backup server goes with it. Also, if the server has already been hacked by a Design Downloader it will go into lockdown and corruption will become impossible.
      • The AI will notice the hacking in progress and respond against your units both on that planet and nearby.
      • NOTE: Successfully corrupting an AI's design reduces your Hacking-Progress by 30. Each subsequent design corrupted costs 1.5x of the previous.
  • Added new type of placeable for the Hacker: Design Downloader
    • In-game description:
      • If placed on the same planet as one of the AI's Design Backup Servers, this device can download master copies of the design(s) stored there and allow you to build them yourself.
      • Please note: if the command station is destroyed, the backup server goes with it. Also, if the server has already been hacked by a Design Corruptor it will go into lockdown and download will become impossible.
      • The AI will notice the hacking in progress and respond against your units both on that planet and nearby.
      • NOTE: Successfully downloading an AI's design reduces your Hacking-Progress by 50. Each subsequent design corrupted costs 1.5x of the previous.

Prerelease 7.005

(Released July 3rd, 2013)

  • Fixed some hacking types using testing times (seconds instead of minutes).
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.
  • Fixed some bugs where a really intense hacking response could result in array-index-out-of-bounds errors.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.
  • Fixed some bugs where some of the new hacking state (how many fab hacks you'd done, which fabs you'd hacked) was persisting between quitting and starting a new game.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.
  • Knowledge Hacking no longer requires supply on the target planet, as there's only so many of these that you're going to pull off anyway.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the suggestion.

Prerelease 7.004

(Released July 3rd, 2013)

  • Corrected some uses of the wrong newline character in the CounterHacking log.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.
  • Fixed a bug in the hacking progress display that thought the cost of ST-hacking doubled with every tick instead of every 20 ticks. The actual computation was right, but this quickly made the display useless.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.
  • Added some logic to the new hacking-response computations to guard against arithmetic overflow. Both by capping the intermediate results to avoid absurd numbers, and by expediting the destruction of the player.
    • Thanks to Toranth for inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.003

(Released July 3rd, 2013)

  • Fixed a bug preventing the loading of old saves (where you had at least one inbound wave in the alert box).
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.
  • Made the Hacking Progress display show up all the time, not just when you'd spent some.
    • Thanks to Aklyon for inspiring this change.

Prerelease 7.002 Hacked To Pieces

(Released July 3rd, 2013)

  • Fixed a bug where using "Apply To Selection" to change the planned modules on a unit under construction (like a modular fortress) would reset that unit's construction progress.
    • Thanks to TechSY730, Shadowsand, and MaxAstro for reporting.
  • Space Docks, Mobile Space Docks, and Advanced Factories:
    • Can now all build all 5 mark levels, assuming you have the prerequisites for those ships (so if you have a Core Shield Bearer fabricator you can now build Core Shield Bearers at any Space Dock, Mobile Space Dock, or Advanced Factory; even if you don't have access to building mkI shield bearers).
    • Their buy menu tab is now labeled "FLEET" instead of "I-III" or "IV" or whatever.
    • There is now a "FLEET 2" tab that will show next to that one if your name is Cinth; I mean, if you have more than 20 distinct fleet-ship types.
    • Thanks to Cinth for inspiring the fleet-2 tab part.
  • Starship Constructors and Advanced Starship Constructors can now build all 5 mark levels, assuming you have the prereqs for the ships in questions. So you can now build Warbird Starships at a normal Starship Constructor if you have the right fab, etc.
  • Fixed a bug where Core Flak Turrets had needler ammo in their magazines instead of flak grenades. The logistics officer has been sacked.
    • Thanks to SNAFU for the report.
  • We express our sincere condolences to Cheesemasters everywhere: Lightning Torpedoes can no longer be put in transports. The days of the Transpocalypse are over (or at least more complicated to achieve).
    • This goes for Maws, too.
    • Thanks to Toranth for the report.
  • Fixed a bug where the MkIV Scout could be built from a Mobile Space Dock without controlling an Advanced Factory.
    • Thanks to Kronic for the report.

The New Hacking

  • This is the first step in the promotion of Hacking to a full resource, and the removal of Crystal (it will just be merged into Metal). This won the "Big Items for 8.0" poll here, after being discussed at length here. The actual implementation will vary somewhat from previous discussions as I figure out what works best. More kinds of hacking are coming, the actual crystal removal (and moving of hacking to the resource bar), and iteration on hacking balance and such will be ongoing for a while.
    • Thanks to chemical_art, Wingflier, ZaneWolfe, Cinth, Kahuna, Faulty Logic, RCIX, Lancefighter, nas1m, _K_, Irxallis, Toranth, Eternaly_Lost, Cyborg, Billick, Aklyon, Valtiel, KDR_11k, Radiant Phoenix, LaughingThesaurus, Vyndicu, Moonshine Fox, TIE Viper, Winge, Drjones013, Hearteater, contingencyplan, and the poll voters for inspiring these changes.
  • Added a new ship to the ECON build tab: the Hacker.
    • This works a lot like the Ship Design Hacker but doesn't do any hacking itself. Instead it can deploy devices much like a champ can deploy projected shields, etc (so it has to be within X range, is essentially free and instant, etc). The first two such devices are:
      • Covert Knowledge Extractor; a renamed Knowledge Hacker (formerly known as the Science Lab MkIII).
      • Research Redirector; a renamed Ship Design Hacker.
    • Both are immobile, no longer directly buildable (except by the hacker) and can only be placed on planets that are currently controlled by the AI.
  • The scale of the AI's response to hacking is now determined by a mix of AIP and the new "Hacking Progress" resource instead of the old under-the-hood "Hacking Antagonism" metric.
    • Hacking Progress is basically equal to total AIP (not effective AIP, but total before reductions) minus whatever you've spent. It's spent thus:
      • Knowledge hacking: 30 for the first planet's worth, 60 for the second planet's worth, 120 for the third, etc.
      • Ship Design hacking: 50 for the first ARS, 100 for the second, 200 for the third, etc.
      • Superterminal hacking: 1 each for the first 20 ticks (which is a net 20 AIP reduction, 2 each for the next 20, 4 each for the twenty after that, etc.
    • Hacking Progress can go negative! This basically represents a situation where your hackers have used all the known vulnerabilities in the AI's network defenses to the point that the AI has patched them all, and now further hacking is basically brute-force stuff that really trips a lot of alarms.
    • The hacking response is:
      • If Hacking Progress is >= 0, then just uses Effective AIP (so AIP after reductions).
      • If Hacking Progress is negative, then it uses either Effective AIP or -HackingProgress (whichever is greater) AND multiplies the result by 1+(HackingProgress/-10).
        • So if AIP is 10 normally the response would be scaled by just 10. But if Hacking Progress were -50 the response would be scaled by _300_.
  • Added new device that can be placed by the Hacker: Fabricator Hacker.
    • Since AI fabricators do not store the full Master Data of their design, we can only build from that design while the fabricator remains intact.
    • This device infiltrates the AI's local industrial network and corrupts the fabricator's design data. The AI's autocorrection then triggers a rebroadcast of the relevant Master Data. Our device will then helpfully intercept this transmission, enabling us to build that design from our standard Space Docks.
    • Please note: once the AI loses control of a planet its security protocols will prevent any retransmission to any fabricator on it. Accordingly, if you wish to perform this hack you must do so BEFORE the AI's command station on the planet is destroyed.
    • The AI will notice the hacking in progress and respond against your units both on that planet and nearby.
    • NOTE: Successfully hacking a Fabricator reduces your Hacking-Progress by 20. This cost doubles each time, so the second hack costs 40 (for a total of 60), the third costs 80 (for a total of 140) and so on.
  • Added new device that can be placed by the Hacker: Advanced Constructor Hacker.
    • Since AI Advanced Factories and Advanced Starship Constructors do not store the full Master Data of their designs, we can only build from that design while the facility remains intact.
    • This device infiltrates the AI's local industrial network and corrupts the facility's design data. The AI's autocorrection then triggers a rebroadcast of the relevant Master Data. Our device will then helpfully intercept this transmission, enabling us to build those MkIV designs from our standard Space Docks (or Starship Constructors, in the ASC's case). Assuming we have the corresponding MkIII research, of course.
    • Please note: once the AI loses control of a planet its security protocols will prevent any such retransmission to any facility on it. Accordingly, if you wish to perform this hack you must do so BEFORE the AI's command station on the planet is destroyed.
    • The AI will notice the hacking in progress and respond against your units both on that planet and nearby.
    • NOTE: Successfully hacking an advanced constructor reduces your Hacking-Progress by 100. Performing another such hack costs 200 (for a total of 300).

Prerelease 7.001

(Released June 19th, 2013)

  • Added a clarification to the tutorial text in step 11 of tutorial 2 that you're supposed to unlock the harvester exo-shield from the SUP tab of the Science Lab, not of the Command Station.
    • Thanks to Some Donkus (actual provided name, not an editorial comment) for inspiring this change.
  • Fixed a bug where the Lightning Torpedo still had a theoretical cost of 50,000m+50,000c instead of 1+1 (they're never built normally, this is just to prevent scrap exploits).
    • Thanks to onyhow for the report.
  • Added support for an easier way for the steam version to recognize that you own the first four expansions. As in, not copy-and-pasting 4 separate keys.
    • There's still some other stuff we need to do to make this work, though.
  • Updated the Advanced Starship Constructor to no longer claim that the MkIV enclave is built at the normal starship constructor.
    • Thanks to corfe83 for the report.
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