Chris

Build V8 Preview!

75 posts in this topic

So, it's been a long time since we released a new build. This is mostly down to Paypal, I'm afraid, but we have Build V8 due out next weekend (12th / 13th Nov) to make up for it and to dovetail into our full Desura-powered relaunch.

Build V7.5 was our first playable 'mission', and Build V8 is meant to be the first playable game of Xenonauts. It probably won't be particularly well balanced, but it will contain all the elements of the final game in at least basic form. It will be iterated several times, as it is intended to

These are the improvements over Build V7.5 that will be in Build V8:

- Geoscape Save / Load: You are now able to save and load the game on the Geoscape (not yet functional in the ground combat though). Small feature, big usability change.

- Title Screen: We've also added the title screen to the game. This gives you 4 difficulty setting options when starting a new game, and also allows key remapping if you so desire.

- Research: This has been in the development build for a while, but the next game will contain the first hour or two of the research tree for you to play with.

- Interface fixes: largely related to ground combat. A lot of people have commented on V7.5 both online and at the Expo that some things were a bit clunky when controlling your soldiers. We've tried to address them all - there's a few too many to list here.

- Fire Control system: If you were not shooting at terrain in an attempt to destroy it, it was previously very difficult to target a specific prop or cover wall because the game wouldn't let you aim at them. Now you can (and you get an accuracy boost because you're specifically shooting at them, not trying to shoot past them).

- Vaulting / Mantling: Waist-high walls are no longer the impenetrable barrier they once were! Your soldiers can now vault / mantle over them.

- New Cover System: there's been extensive debate on the forums over the merits of the previous cover system versus manual kneeling, as the two were not compatible. Long story short, we've updated the combat system so all kneeling is now manual (as in X-Com) and cover automatically provides a defence bonus when you are in a tile that offers cover. Kneeling increases that bonus, and both makes soldiers harder to hit and gives them an accuracy bonus. However it now also has an AP cost.

- Level Editor updates: We've also updated the level editor to better reflect the fact that a crash site can have different types of UFO on it, and different types of dropship too. Essentially these are handled on seperate layers and there is better randomisation of start location.

These are the improvements that will appear in build V8.x before it is sent to the press (ie, the stuff we'll be focusing all our development on over the next couple of weeks):

- Ground Combat Save / Loading: Important feature for a lot of people.

- Ground Combat Difficulty Setting: Currently the difficulty setting only affects the Geoscape. It should also affect the stats of the aliens and their weaponry in the ground combat too.

- Correct map loading: With the changes to the level editor, I want to change the game so it correctly loads the UFO type shot down to initiate the map (so you can run both Scout and Corvette crash site missions).

- New Animations: We've had to start rendering every single unit in the game again thanks to the changes to the cover system. We'll need all the basic troop animations for the basic weapons in the game before it goes to the press though.

- Mission Map randomisation: While the game will still only support one map (the testmap in the Industrial tileset) at this point, I want to improve the map so it shows off the randomisation capacities of the engine. So the buildings won't be the same every time, and hopefully we can show off the UFO / dropship location randomisation too.

- UFO tiles (hopefully): This one is still up in the air, but I'd like to get the UFO tiles in the game if possible. We've got a new tile artist who might be able to turn them around quite quickly - it's a bit strange capturing the Evil Alien Shed at the moment...

There may be other things that I've forgotten about, but in short there's been some pretty major updates and hopefully the gameplay will be considerably better than before.

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Excellent news! I am excited for you guys!

I love me randomization! (And animations are great, but there's something charming about animations in tactics games cutting corners)

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Sounds good, Chris, can't wait to get into the new build when it comes out

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Many Hoorays!

Vaulting, saving, interface fixes, possibly seeing the alien ships for the first time...

And a new cover system!

Does the research include production? I.e. Will we get to shoot lasers at aliens?

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Yes. I think we'll probably stop the research tree at Laser weapons, and you'll be able to build them too.

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amazing!

i was watching the game for almost an year, and look where you are now... just preordered the premium edition. :)

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Looking forward to next build !

I hope the release game will have a wide variety of research, has always been a big part of x-com though not always very balanced.

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Didn't Chris say the tech tree was about 2 or 3 times larger than X-com's?

Edited by Sathra
speeling.

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Didn't Chris say the tech tree was about 2 or 3 times larger than X-com's?

Then I'll be sleeping well ;)

Oh and I see the premium badge is active, nice ! Thanks for the hard work on solving all the website and pre-order issues as fast you could, Chris ! So great to see the future of my favorite type of game is in dedicated good hands !

Edited by Leto

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Didn't Chris say the tech tree was about 2 or 3 times larger than X-com's?

Sounds like the kind of thing I'd say. It probably is right now, but it may well get pared down during testing if it turns out a lot of it is useless filler. It shouldn't be, but as always I fight needless complexity whereever I see it.

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Oh and I see the premium badge is active, nice ! T

aww... my badge isn't active.. maybe it's because i've registered after the payment? :(

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Looking good. Will wait until the new version. Hope my studies don't get in the way by that time :D

P.S

I wonder how I can get that cool badge. I pre-ordered for the bigger price, naturally. Wouldn't think of asking for a refund. I suppose it takes little time.

Edit: Nevermind. Got it :D

Edited by armabe

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Oh, sorry - just to clarify for anyone who has pre-ordered the game now instead of being an old-school pre-orderer. To get your forum badge, you just need to go here: http://www.desura.com/games/xenonauts/connect and press the Connect button. That'll link your Desura order and your forum account.

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New cover system \o/

Really can't wait to see how this plays out and of course to hear what everyone else thinks of it. ;)

Other points of interest are how the Fire Control System was changed and the improvements to unit control. Map randomisation along with the other tilesets are right at the top of my wanted list.

I wonder though what the reason is for sending it to the press without all the tilesets active? Or perhaps I misunderstood.

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Hi folks,

I am a premium member, and now have Desura. It is still giving me the option to buy the game, even though I kept the 29.99 preorder value.

How do I download the build without having to go through buying it again?

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Tweakd - this is only preview #1, just so more people get aware of the fact we're a viable project rather than vaporware. We'll make it clear that it's just a work in progress.

OzEnglish - did you get a Desura invite in the email sent to you? Have you claimed the game through there?

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I was wondering that myself...I haven't been here since the last forums were in place, and after having changed my e-mail address, I barely managed to get my account back in order and my order back on my account. There was a part accessible only by pre-order members in the previous forum (where one could download the latest builds). There doesn't seem to be any such category now...or am I missing it?

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Hi Chris,

Yeah I got the invite email. I will go check again through it to see if I did the game part correctly!

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Ok yeah, I kinda figured there was a link I didn't click on... long week ok! make sure you click on the redeem and then let's play! It will then start the download!

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