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  1. 5 points
    We're probably overdue another development update, so here's a quick post letting everyone know what we've been working on recently. Quite a bit to talk about actually! Firstly, a public service announcement - we're going to be ending the Xsolla pre-orders on our site on August 29th. Anyone who has an Xsolla pre-order at that point will then be sent an email asking their preference for a Steam key or a GOG key, which will be sent to them at the end of September (non-responders get a Steam key). We're doing this partially because Xsolla is proving a pain to maintain relative to Steam / GOG, and partially because we want to build up a backlog of interested customers prior to our Early Access launch. We're still not completely sure when Early Access is going to happen. The game is continuing to progress but I'm sure most of our beta testers would agree the game isn't ready for primetime yet; we're just going to keep adding things and fixing things until it is. The first thing we're working on right now is implementing the remaining missing or broken parts of the game - e.g. night missions, base defence missions, multiple dropship support, updgradeable dropships, further expansion of the air combat, etc. Switching back to the classic X1 base mechanics has been quite a bit of work but the job is largely done, we're now just at the stage where we're updating the other systems that have changed as a result of this - e.g. we've had to update the Aircraft systems now they are stationed in actual bases and need to appear in Hangar base buildings, and need to support construction to them and relocation between them. The second thing we're working on is overall usability and game balance. Over the past month or so we've been regularly talking about balance issues with the community and making adjustments, but we've also been fixing various gameplay bugs and design issues (such as suppression not functioning correctly, TU values being flat rather than %s, etc). We've nearly finished the tooltip system, too, which should make the game far easier to understand than it currently is ... right now there's not even a way to view the stats of a piece of equipment! Finally, we're also spending a bit of time looking at the visuals of the game. In the ground combat we've switched to genuine isometic / orthographic camera rather than a perspective one trying to mimic it, which makes the battlefield a bit easier to read. On the strategy layer I'm looking at doing a pass on the UI to clean it up a bit, removing a bit of the visual clutter and probably moving to a visually similar but more modern font that renders more cleanly (and supports lowercase letters and special characters). The visuals of the game are a lower priority right now than finishing off the game mechanics, but the issue is on our radar and we are slowly improving things. So, where does that leave us? I'm not exactly sure when Closed Beta V7 wil be due, as we first need to work through all the bugs / changes forced by the base update. I've also got another quite significant upgrade planned for the air combat that shifts the combat from a 1D grid to a 2D gride with "proper" movement. I'm guessing V7 is likely to arrive towards the end of this month, so we may release a (highly) experimental build in the interim that has a semi-broken strategy layer but will let us test some of the updated ground combat mechanics / balance changes. Anyway, thanks for reading - we'll keep you guys informed about our plans as they progress!
  2. 4 points
    I guess it's time for me to spend 100 hours on a playthrough of X-Division then
  3. 4 points
    This is more of a "feels over reals" kind of explanation, but bear with me. I wanted to show a match wih my modded stats, but Bandicam seems to hate X2 and will crash it without fear or remorse. It's the start of a new game. It's a wood map. You turn a solider in the chopper and spy a Psyon maybe slightly half a tile away. Perhaps 16 spaces or so. It's in the open. You take aim with a solider, aimed shot, 83% chance to ht. You hit, congrats! That's 26 damage. The Psyon returns fire. It hits, that's 55 damage, instant death. You sigh. You get some more soliders out of the chopper and a few more shots later, the Psyon who killed the first soldier is dead. It's now the alien turn. A Psyon appears. It targets a solider who isn't quite in position. The Psyon hits, does 67 points of damage. That soldier is dead. You grit your teeth. Another Psyon appears. One of your soliders takes an overwatch shot. She misses. The Psyon returns fire. A miss! The Psyon fires again. A hit. that's 59 points of damage. Instant death. At this point, you're ready to cinduct experiments on the terminal velocity of monitors vis. 3rd storey windows. Early game, every fight with a Psyon can go pear shaped very, very quickly. The impression, and please forgive my language, is that you don't fuck around with Psyons. If I know that I'm fighting Psyons, I'm carrying lots of smoke. I have my lines of exit clear. The third man (I never fght in twos against Psyons if I can help it) is always ready with smoke in case the other two morons manage to mess it up. I would rather spent all my TU and re-position my team to lure a Psyon to me than get into a shooting match with a Psyon, because I know I will loose that fight. That's all thanks to the plasma rifle. You learn to respect it very quickly, and the plasma rifle gives the Psyon character. Now, same situation. You're facing Sebillians. The Sebillian fires off a burst. One catches the solider. He takes 32 damage. You think "I can handle that". The Sebillian fires off another burst. Another shot hits, that's 25 damage. That's a kill. But it feels different. You feel like the Sebillian has spent a lot of effort trying to kill the solider, that it's been blasting away even though it's actually only spent the same amount of TU and effort that a Psyon does firing the same number of shots. You feel like you can take Sebillians in a shooting war, and you better be able to because Sebillians soak a hella lotta damage, so you have to be able to hold your ground against Sebillians. Shotguns are a vital weapon in the fight against Sebillians, and you need to be able to go over the top to get in close enough to kill a Sebillian. The mag rifle could give the Sebillian as much character as the plasma rifle gives the Psyon, ust based on how it feels to fight them. Or look at it like this. The mag rifle. As dangerous as the plasma rifle. In the hands of an enemy with 45% more health (100% more health for the Brute) who can regenerate. Seriously? I'd almost rather face Androns. I mean, I notice there are both modifiers for armor penetration and armor destruction in the weapon.json master file. Linear weapons are noted as much for their penetrative capabilities as their power. It's one of the common memes in computer games, that railguns typically can penetrate several enemies at once and/or terrain. Perhaps fiddling with armor penetration/destruction as easy numbers to alter would be of value? EDIT: For those interested in my edits, I append my currently edited files. You'll have to replace the current files with the edited ones, which means 1) make backups and 2) don't report bugs with edited files, because even though this is just number editing, editing numbers can have unforseen effects in-game. Xenonauts2Mods.zip
  4. 4 points
    Aaaaand we're spiraling into drama again. indaris, if you want to have a slap fight with Dagar, you're not going to have it on this forum. Thread locked.
  5. 4 points
    Closed Beta Build V6 has now been released on Steam, GOG and Xsolla. Note that this build is only available on our new Experimental branch so you'll need to switch over to get this update (instructions on how to do that here). As usual, please note this closed beta is only open to Kickstarter backers and people who have pre-ordered the game via Xsolla on our website. This is a major update for the game that contains a number of significant new features. We're currently working on getting the remaining "core" systems into the game as fast as possible, so many of these new features are still largely untested. This is why we've set up the Experimental branches - this new build may well be full of game-breaking bugs, but we're extremely busy with feature implementation and so we won't be able to put out a hotfix as quickly as normal. Having V6 on an experimental branch means people can switch back to V5 if they want a more stable experience, so we're not forced to drop what we're doing to patch the game immediately if there are problems. Be aware that you're probably still not going to have any idea what's going on with the new air combat because we've not yet had time to add tooltips into the game (they're coming soon) so there's no way to view the stats of any of the combatants or the weapons. Given the air combat is now based more heavily on percentages like Hit Chance, Evade Chance, Range etc this means it's still largely unplayable unless someone has explained what is happening in advance (although reading the changelog below will help a little). Key Features: Air Combat Update: there's been a substantial update to the air combat. The new mechanics are explained below in more detail. Alien Psionics: certain ranks of Psyon now have access to the Mind War psionic ability, which they automatically use every turn. The mechanics are a bit different from the X1 psionics and are explained in full below. Soldier Assignment System: there's now a central soldier management system that ensures soldiers can only be assigned one task at a time (e.g. if they're on a Strategic Operation, you can't then deploy them in combat). Strategy Upkeep / Funding Screen: your personnel, aircraft and base structures now have upkeep costs. You can now access a preview of the Funding Screen from the Geoscape at any point, which also gives a breakdown of all of your predicted income and upkeep costs. Crash Site Airstrike: the "airstrike" functionality from X1 that allows you to receive a cash bonus in exchange for removing a crash site from the Geoscape has now returned. New Artwork: we've added new art to various screens. This includes everything from strategy screen backgrounds and new UFO artwork to additional alien combatant models and new energy weapon projectiles. More Alien Variants: the crews of alien ships are now more varied, with each alien race now have multiple unit variants like in X1 (i.e. not every alien is a generic soldier, so some of a UFO crew will be lightly-armed non-combatants that fly the UFO etc). There's also Elite aliens with better equipment that start appearing later in the game. Air Combat Update: Air combat now auto-resolves rather than requiring you to issue all commands manually, which makes interceptions much faster and less fiddly Your interceptors have AI that will automatically attempt to close to the appropriate range with the UFOs and fire weapons, but the player can also manually issue orders if they choose Weapons will auto-fire if the interceptor is range, but fire permission can be toggled off by clicking the weapon icon on the new interceptor status panels on the right of the screen. Weapons now have % hit chances, and combatants have a % evade chance. The weapon first rolls to hit, and then if a hit is scored the defender rolls to see if they can evade. Weapons also have an Evade Modifier which controls how easy they are to evade. Torpedoes are powerful but have a 2x Evade modifier, making them ineffective against Fighter UFOs that have 50% base Evade score (giving them a modified 100% Evade vs torpedoes). However, they are much more effective against cumbersome UFOs like Destroyers which have a base 0% Evade score and are unable to dodge even the slowest weapons. Alien Psionics: Alien psionics are now in the game in the form of the Mind War ability, which several types of Psyon and the Praetor-equivalent possess. Each alien with the Mind War ability will cast it against a random Xenonaut each turn. Line of sight is not required but each Xenonaut can only be hit once per turn. All Xenonauts affected by Mind War are flagged at the start of the player's turn. At the end of the player's turn, Mind War is resolved. This is done by comparing the Psionic Strength of the attacker to the Bravery of the defender, along with a random element that is added to each. If the attacker is successful, the Xenonaut is panicked and will drop their weapon and flee. If the attacker beats the defender by more than 30, the attacker scores a critical success and the Xenonaut is instead Mind Controlled. The defender will receive a bonus to their Bravery equal to their Bravery multiplied by their remaining % of TU - so if you don't spend any TU on a soldier, they will receive twice their normal Bravery in the defence roll. Strategy: General - we've added a central soldier management system that ensures soldiers can only be assigned one task at a time (e.g. if they're on a Strategic Operation, you can't then deploy them in combat). General - there are now monthly upkeep costs for your staff, aircraft and base structures. These are deducted from your monthly funding each time it is received. General - there's new strategy / air combat art for four of the early-game UFOs General - UFOs now contain a wider range of possible races, and each race has a larger number of possible variants with different weapons and armour General - we've added support for sorting items in the Research Projects / Engineering Projects / Base Stores list General - added a little more writing for some of the early-game research reports General - prevented saves occurring while the game performing tasks that would break saves (this fixes a bug where users would end up with corrupted saves) Geoscape - a preview of the funding screen can now be accessed at any time, showing your predicted funding per region and also giving you a breakdown of the upkeep costs of your organisation Geoscape - the X1 "Airstrike" functionality has been added to the game, allowing you to pass on doing a crash site mission and receive cash instead (if a Crash Site times out without you completing it, you're automatically granted the airstrike cash) Geoscape - Strategic Operations now take less time to complete if you assign more personnel to them Geoscape - clicking near multiple interactive objects will now give you a pop-up allowing you to specify which object you'd like to select, as it did in X1 Geoscape - landed UFOs now function correctly, although right now there's no difference between a crashed and landed UFO in gameplay terms (there will be in future) Geoscape - there's been some visual changes, with an updated layout more akin to X1 and some new art. Geoscape - Alien Bases now start undetected and can either be detected passively (you have an increasing % chance each day to detect the base), or can be detected by flying an interceptor over the base Geoscape - Infiltrator markers spawned onto the Geoscape by Alien Bases now spawn in same region as the base Geoscape - hovering over a region now displays the region name and the Relations score rather than the "health bar" that we had in previous versions Geoscape - lines in the log are now linked to the events on the Geoscape like it was in X1 (i.e. hovering over a log message should highlight the appropriate object on the Geoscape, etc) Geoscape - improved the performance when there are multiple UFOs flying around at high speed Geoscape - the notification you receive when completing a base structure now correctly displays the building name, not simply "." Geoscape - fixed the Bomber UFO icon being inverted Personnel - Soldiers still appear in your personnel list immediately after being hired, but their status is now set to be In Transit for 3 days. Personnel - Soldiers now have starting stats ranging from 35-65 in each attribute, rather than 45-55 Soldier Equip - soldier medals are now visible. This system needs some additional work before it is finished, but the (placeholder) medals that currently exist are working. Soldier Equip - clicking the soldier portrait now allows you to change the soldier in that slot Dropship Equip - this screen is now capable of supporting additional types of dropship with different troop capacities and so works slightly differently now: The soldier portraits are now shown in a horizontal row beneath the dropship and are numbered by hotkey, and they no longer re-order themselves when you move units around in the dropship. Holding down shift when you move a soldier icon over another soldier icon around will swap the hotkeys of those two soldiers. Hovering the mouse over a soldier portrait will light up their soldier icon, making it a little easier to see which icon belongs to which soldier. The soldier assignment menu now marks the soldiers that are already assigned to the dropship. Ground Combat: Specific ground combat items now recover items on the strategy layer (assuming they survive). The UFO power cores are now the only source of Alenium in the game, so be careful not to blow them up! UFO crash site maps are now roughly 50x50 for all UFOs rather than expanding in size as the game goes on - clearing a bigger UFO is already much more time consuming than a smaller UFO, so also enlarging the map as well made for very long missions. The Overwatch toggles on the new GC UI now work correctly for each weapon (so you can disable the Primary weapon if you want to reaction fire with the Secondary instead, etc) Reloading weapons manually in the ground combat soldier inventory should now have the same effect as the quick reload button in all instances We've redesigned several of the UFOs, updated their interior layouts and added a number of new props Two new armoured elite Psyon variants have been added to the late game Added new projectiles and impact effects for the Plasma and Fusion energy weapons Fixed a number of animation issues for the humans and Psyons (made shooting snappier, fixed some flickering in the run cycle, etc) Laser Weapons now have updated inventory artwork Alien Magnetic Pistol and Alien Fusion Pistol now have 3D models A number of visual updates on the Farm biome Civilians now have more biome-appropriate clothing, although they are still placeholder Some improvements to the roof-hiding system, although there is more to do here Some improvements to the way the camera tracks alien activity during the alien turn, although there is also more to do here Bugfix - Terror missions should no longer freeze at 99% loading Bugfix - fixed a hang where you couldn't complete a mission if one of your soldiers was stunned Bugfix - fixed several mis-set assets, including train cars that units could walk into and some windows that could not be seen through Bugfix - fixed some missing move tiles Bugfix - fixed an issue with C4 giving the player multiple detonation crosshairs with incorrect detonation costs Bugfix - fixed a bug where crouched units would appear to be standing if you loaded a save game
  6. 4 points
    Hello everyone - we've just gone into June and there's not been much news coming out of Goldhawk HQ recently, so I thought I'd write a quick forum update to keep everyone informed about our progress. We released our last update just over two weeks ago, which was a big hotfix for Closed Beta V5 and fixed quite a few of the stability issues we had in V5. Since then we've moved back to adding content and features to the game. We've already finished up a few features that will be in the next update such as the Crash Site airstrike mechanic that was in the original Xenonauts, the recovery of strategic items from specific ground combat tiles (e.g. a UFO Power Core grants you Alenium unless you destroy it), and the soldier management system that means you can no longer assign soldiers to multiple tasks that should be mutually exclusive (being in an airborne dropship, being on a Strategic Operation, being wounded, etc.) However, we're also starting work on some bigger tasks. We're updating the Air Combat to make it deeper but at the same time less fiddly - we're doing this by adding some new mechanics, but automating a lot of the clicking the current air combat requires you to do. Although you can pause the combat and issue your interceptors detailed manual orders if you choose, the new model of the air combat will automatically play itself out in the same way that the air combat in the original Xenonauts did. However, as the combat is now turn-based there's less reliance on split-second timing on your pauses. Anyway, I'll explain all the changes in more detail when the next major update arrives! As you can see from the example above, we're also working on adding new art to the game. In recent months we've brought on some new freelancers to start painting up the final art assets for the game and this is starting to bear fruit. These are some of the final art assets that are working through the pipeline: Strategic UFO Artwork Strategic UI Backgrounds (in full 21:9 glory) Weapon Inventory Art Alien Autopsy & GC Corpse Art Soviet Town terror maps This is being coupled to some new gameplay content as well. We've created some new props for the UFO interiors so they're more interesting to play through, and I've updated the UFO crews so there's a better sense of progression through the game - the alien crews get bigger and better equipped as time goes on, and once the larger UFOs start appearing you could be facing Psyons, Sebillians, Wraiths or Androns each time a combat mission spawns. The balancing isn't final by any means but it's another step closer to being finished. I've also taken some inspiration from what we did in X1 with the UFO crews, and added several new variants of each alien. For instance, there are now unarmoured Sebillian non-combatants (pilots / engineers / etc) that spawn inside UFOs and only have pistols, rather than every Sebillian being a well-equipped soldier. This process is more complete for some races than others (the Androns in particular are short on variation) but once some of the new alien variant models start appearing I think we'll have a more varied set of aliens than we did in the first game. We'll also hopefully have a bit more of the writing done by the time the next major build arrives. The tech tree is starting to solidify and I'll be starting to put more attention into the research reports now we have more idea of how things might slot together in the final game. There's some other cool things in the works but I'm starting to run out of space so I'll save them for the update announcement. Sorry for the lack of communications on the forums recently; unfortunately I've just been working too hard to spare the time!
  7. 3 points
    This is the heartwarming developer story of Space Pirates and Zombies, an Indie game with a quality which is beyond AAA level in terms of actual gameplay. Enjoy. https://www.minmax-games.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=3152&sid=00c24490c435faad69a4295f43b253a4
  8. 3 points
    The air combat section of Xenonauts 2 has gone through a number of iterations over the past few years, and with the project approaching Early Access we've taken the decision to switch to (an upgraded version of) the realtime air combat mechanics from the first game rather than pursuing the alternative turn-based model I've been experimenting with. I'll explain the reasons for this change below, but let's start by discussing the realtime mechanics and the planned improvements. Realtime Mechanics: We're already working on implementing the realtime air combat mechanics from the first Xenonauts and we're hoping to have them in the next major release (V8). This will also include various supporting strategic systems such as the ability to manufacture advanced aircraft on the Engineering screen, many of which require some extra work now the "classic" base update changed the way Hangars worked. The goal for V8 is therefore to literally have the air combat from the first Xenonauts in the second game as a starting point to test our improvements. We'll probably chuck the same planes and weapons in the game with the same stats, and fit them into the tech tree in roughly the same place, and do the same for the UFO stats. This will make it easier for both us as the developers and you as the community to spot missing features or things that aren't working properly, and it also ensures that the strategy layer has reasonable balance / progression to allow us to test the new features we're planning to experiment with in future builds: Interceptor Components: on the Aircraft screen there are additional slots for new types of equipment that did not appear in the first Xenonauts (armour, engines). One of the main things I want to experiment with is to have fewer types of interceptor but more possible upgrades, making the tech tree more interesting ensuring each type of interceptor can potentially stay relevant for longer. As an aside, it might be interesting to give each aircraft type a Power stat and have the various weapons, engines and armour types draw a certain amount of power. So even basic aircraft can still use highly advanced equipment but can support less of it than the more advanced fighters. Also, if much of the cost of an aircraft comes from its components rather than the aircraft itself, we could re-implement permadeath for the aircraft itself but make most of the equipment recoverable when a plane is shot down. Clouds: these would provide cover on the battlefield and the amount and position of them would be randomised each battle. The idea is that combatants can move through clouds freely but they would block the fire arcs of weapons (and missiles wouldn't make course adjustments while flying through them). Hit / Evade Chances: this an experimental change we're going to try, where combatants have % Evade scores and weapons have % Accuracy scores and Evade modifiers. The Evade roll will no longer be manually triggered and will just play an evade animation (without moving the plane laterally) when an Evade occurs. We'll see if this improves the game and if not we'll return to the old system where weapons would always hit if in range. The % Accuracy on weapons is somewhat required if we're going to add Pilots to the game, as the obvious thing for pilots to do as they gain experience is provide an Accuracy bonus to their weapons and an Evade bonus to their interceptor. The same is true for upgrades like targeting computers or so forth; in the old X1 air combat there's just not many variables to play with and that limits the equipment and upgrade choices we can give the player. Relative Battlefields: in X1 the boundaries of the battlefield are set at the start of the combat, but in X2 the boundaries will always be a fixed distance from the main UFO. This will allow us to set some combats up as a chase where the UFO is trying to get far enough away from your planes to push them off the edge of the map, while peppering your pursuing interceptors with fire from a rotating turret weapon (or relying on their escorts to cover for them). It's not a huge thing but in X1 literally every UFO would just turn and fly towards your interceptors so it'd be nice if in X2 some UFOs tried something a little different. Special Equipment: we'll also likely be experimenting with some other types of equipment that weren't in X1, such as turret weapons that are capable of rotating their fire arcs, or shields. Not sure how many will provide practical but we've got a few ideas! The main intention of these changes is to add a bit more variety to the air combat. One of the problems in X1 was that a combat featuring a particular UFO versus a particular combination of interceptors would almost always play out the same way every time, and there's a few things we can do to mitigate this. The addition of clouds means that the battlefield itself may cause the tactics to be different in different battles, and making weapons use % hit rolls should also ensure a bit more variation (e.g. a combat may play out quite differently if a long range volley of missiles at the start of combat scores 4 hits compared to if it scores 2 hits). Depending on how the combat changes play out, I think the strategic side of the air combat may also become more complex and interesting. In X1 you were continually building steadily more advanced planes and getting rid of the older models once they became irrelevant, but if specific aircraft gain combat experience through a pilot system and are also more upgradeable than before then I can see more interesting choices becoming available to the player. Do you replace your experienced starting interceptors as soon as a better interceptor becomes available, or do you give them some upgrades and keep them around? Or just play aggressively with them until they get shot down, and then replace them? Etc. What happened to the turn-based air combat model? Up until V7 the game featured a turn-based air combat model. The plan was to add increasing complexity to this turn-based system until we got something that was complex enough to be fun, but was ideally a bit faster-paced than the X1 air combat and used a more similar skillset to the rest of the game. The tun-based air combat in the public builds never got to the stage where it became fun. After the last iteration it was obvious that air combat needed proper 2D unit movement (rather than just 1D moving forwards / backwards) if it was to be interesting enough to support the more complex strategy layer that Xenonauts has compared to XCOM or classic X-Com. With overly simple air combat not only are the interceptions more boring, there's also less scope for research and UFO behaviour on the rest of the strategy layer too. Unfortunately, when we set to work implementing this it became clear that trying to handle complex 2D movement in a fast-paced way was going to be impractical in a turn-based system. Obviously asking players to issue orders to all of their planes every few seconds wasn't an option as every combat would take hours, so we instead developed an "automated" move system based on auto-calculated moves towards your target enemy unit (or movement waypoint). We were hoping it would provide a realtime feel while retaining the turn-based system under the hood, but in practice it didn't work well - it was difficult for the user to understand what was going on and it didn't feel as natural or responsive as the X1 realtime system. This is a bit of a shame, as the turn-based system we had planned had been paper prototyped and worked rather well as a board game. But if the fundamental building blocks of the system don't translate well onto the screen, there's point pursuing it further - it seems like we've taken the turn-based model as far as it could go. The best thing to do would just be to pluck out some of the interesting systems and merge them into the X1 realtime system. I certainly think there's some scope to do this. Ideally, I want to try and minimise the amount of time players have to spend pausing / unpausing to try and pick the optimal split-second to do something (like rolling their planes to dodge incoming fire), so making Evasion auto-trigger on a % roll may help a lot here. Adding more variety to the air combat in general should also improve the experience and replayability for everyone, and new ideas such as clouds and the interceptor components actually work equally well under the old X1 realtime system as they do in the current X2 turn-based system. Conclusion: When development began I couldn't see many improvements that could be made to the X1 air combat, which was one of the reasons I was reluctant to use the same system - I felt like I'd be serving up exactly the same thing all over again. After all this experimentation I'm now pretty sure the air combat can be improved, and it's just a question of whether we can improve things a little (by adding clouds, relative battlefields etc) or if we can improve things a lot (by getting hit chances / components / pilots to work). Perhaps if I spent a few more months working on the turn-based system we'd make some kind of breakthrough ... but the game is now approaching Early Access and we need to make a final decision on what system we want to use because the uncertainty is holding back the strategy layer. It's a pretty simple decision; the X1 realtime system currently works better than the X2 turn-based system does, so we'll be going with the X1 system. Anyway, I'm sure some people are going to be very happy with this change and I'm sure some other people will be a bit disappointed. I can understand both viewpoints, but really the most important thing here is that a decision has been made and in the next build we should be able to start balancing and properly playing the strategy layer. Hopefully that at least is something everyone can get excited about!
  9. 3 points
    Mostly fine but the LMG before you sent the patch was useless, especially since it hardly ever actually caused suppression, let alone hit anything. Would be an idea to maybe make the LMG 50% of TU so if you're in cover you can actually put down some fire support. One paltry burst that neither hits anything or causes suppression is not what fire support weapons do. Also, the HEVY is even more useless. I know it's meant to clear cover, but not only does it fail spectacularly to do that, it's also wildly inaccurate. Finally, there should be an option to force troops not to take their overwatch shot if there is any chance of blue on blue.
  10. 3 points
    Nah, I've always said that I was willing to change my mind on the turn-based system. I just said I wasn't willing to change my mind on it until I'd tested it as much as was feasible (which I now have). I do still think there are some fundamental flaws in the X1 system so I'm a bit frustrated that I wasn't able to come up with something better, but there's no point being stubborn about it or trying to force change for the sake of change. That said, the one design aim I want to make clear before this discussion gets going is that I don't want to do anything that makes the air combat much slower than it already is. Having the player spend a few extra minutes tinkering with the loadout of their planes to see if they can fit a laser cannon on their Falcon without having to take the shield generator off is something I'm happy with, but having the actual combat require more micromanagement or having to swap out the pilots / tactics of your aircraft before you launch each mission is not. The "skill" should ideally be in creating loadouts and giving your planes general orders, rather than specifically micromanaging the behaviour of each aircraft during combat. @Charon thanks for the thoughts. I'm not sure if you're advocating for special types of clouds there, but I think we'll probably just stick with the one type. I don't think the system is complex enough to support multiple types of cloud with different effects even if special magic clouds made logical sense. The SPAZ component system you linked uses the same fundamental ideas as what I have in mind, but it seems way too complicated - although what you posted in your images lower down is a bit closer to what I envisioned. Anyway the danger with adding too much content to the air war is that it completely overwhelms the rest of the game and that's definitely something I want to avoid (also the available weapon slots have to align with what can realistically be shown in the Air Combat UI for each plane), however the component / slot system is pretty modular and modders can make something crazy complex if they want. The only limitation right now is that all planes share the same selection of slots, but that may well change in the future. With regards to pilots I'm just thinking that each aircraft gains experience in combat and can level up perhaps three or five times, and gains +Accuracy on its weapons and +Evade on the plane. The pilot isn't seperable from the plane and the pilot is killed if the plane is shot down. It's a fairly simple system but anything more complex is going to add an extra layer of complexity to the UI, and there's already going to be a lot more to display with the component system. Yes, some randomisation in the equipment of UFOs is something we're considering. In terms of the UFO goals in combat, I think you're going to struggle to have something like "deliver a supply run" or "terrorise a city" happen within the air combat - those are things that happen on the Geoscape. For that sorta stuff to be interesting you'd probably need a fixed battlefield with multiple UFOs and NPC air forces and defence turrets and stuff, otherwise your "choice" is always going to be to fly towards the UFO as fast as possible and shoot it down just like it is in all of the other interception missions. And that's probably beyond scope for vanilla X2.
  11. 3 points
    Hey people! I want to talk about weapon firing types (single, aimed, auto...) and how to make them realistic and more fun.. At X-Com type games, we got standard firing methods.. single, aimed and auto. Some weapons do not have all the options. It was nice for a while but now we got more options which can bring more action to the warzone. I wanted to add this to the open-xcom because X-1 did not allow me to mod so deeper. But i could not finish it at Open_Xcom because the balancing is very hard.Again but Phoenix Point will make it. We need to create more firing types and leave some old ones.. Let me discuss this per weapon type: Pistol: Pistols are ultra weak at every xcom game.. there is always much better option.. Why? At reality, many special forces are still using pistols but at games we could not simulate this.. we always bring bigger guns.. John Wick kills mostly with pistol.. So pistols are very fast weapons which easy to aim at short distances. We give single and aimed shot to the pistols and player should fire many times with very low acc. The result is, no more pistols, give me my rifle.. At gun fights, you mostly never go for single shot if you can't aim well because of being under fire. So single shot for pistol is meaningless. There should be something like autofire for pistols with good suppression at shot range. This shot could have a bad aiming but the reason to use it to create a suppression fire at short distances like inside a room. Aimed shot should have a very very good acc bonus at close range which you should miss very rare. Even if we need to go far, we need to have a "critical hit" mechanic with range included. So aimed pistol shot should have great aim and great critical chance but it should have bigger TU then we use. As TU usage, i say make auto and aimed nearly same TU (aimed could be a bit less as single shot). A player should able to fire 2 auto or 3 aimed pistol shot with full TU. Rifle: Our standard weapon at this genre.. everyone wants a rifle.. you can use at any situation. Short range, mid range.. as the playground is not so huge, it's the best weapon.. but it's not right. We got single shot with rifle.. i don' like that.. if you fire your rifle under fire, you use short bursts. So you use autofire as single shot at RL. For that reason, i don't like to have single shot at rifles. I think we need an auto shot and burst shot for rifles. Auto will fire 3 bullet and burst will go for 7 to 10.. so the auto will have a average aim and burst will have very bad aim with suppression. Aimed shot should not be for every "rifle".. you can make a special rifle type with only auto and aimed as it has a scope and you dont use it for burst. Rifle should have penalty at short ranges.. not so huge but it should be there.. so the player will need to take their pistol when he opened a door and saw an alien next to him. Or he will bring shotguns for those close encounters. Rifleman should be someone for support fire at a short distance.. Big guns: LMG.. so you will ask me about this when you read the rifle and how i give supp to it already. Suppression should be very important point for the battle. For us and for aliens. Alien AI should able to handle supp damage very well. Some of the AI should fire at you just to make supp and others should go for kill.. So LMG should have 2 burst type for sure.. like rifle.. An auto shot with 5-6 bullet and full burst with crazy supp. LMG should be used against armored bigger opponents. They need to destroy walls and covers.. LMG carrier soldier should take aim penalty if he moves that turn. If you are not Arnold, you just can't run and shoot someone with LMG's.. Sniper: One of the coolest weapon we just can't use good enough at standard xcom games because the play ground is so messy to put someone somewhere long range and use it to shoot aliens at close areas. Sniper rifles should have special aimed shots. They need to ignore covers somehow.. So they should able to hit very heavy on an alien under a window. Even a full cover would have some weakness as the alien will try to look. So when they pop their head, sniper will hit it. We need to simulate this. Those ideas need some game mechanics to use. I hope we can have some of it to able to give special tasks to every weapon. Thx!
  12. 3 points
    I had another thought when it comes to drop ships investigating crash sites and alien raids ... you know how after, I think, 20 turns or so on an alien city raid, the whole map would be displayed for you along with exactly where all the remaining aliens were / what they were doing? I'm thinking of a smaller scale, less approximate use of such a system of aerial surveillance, the trade-off being that you got results much sooner into the battle itself, but at a reduced value of certainty. Ugh, let me break it down into steps. 1) Drop ship lands in affected area. Cue drop ship some few feet off the ground, stabilizers & landing gear engaged, dust, leaves, sand, grass blowing around the LZ. Cue pilot headset chatter announcing landing, perhaps announcing something along the lines of 'LZ HOT ! or LZ COLD.' depending upon alien presence or lack thereof. 2) Soldiers encounter initial alien response, eventually contain threat, last soldier leaves drop ship or soldiers move a sufficient highlighted distance from drop ship. 3) Start of next turn, drop ship lifts off into the sky, cue pilot headset chatter, 'BIRD BACK IN THE AIR ...' or some such. 4) A turn or 2 later, pilot headset chatter, 'SCOUTING FOR UGLIES !' 5) 5 to 10 turns into mission. Pilot "We May Have Something Here. North Northwestern Grid, Unidentified Heat Signatures in (Forested Area, Open Area, Residential Area)." Or just skip the type of area description and end with 'unidentified heat signatures' and pan camera briefly to a small area unmasked from fog of war, with a red or orange outline of general area aliens may be lurking in. 6) Repeat this process every 5 to 10 turns if helpful / needed.
  13. 3 points
    After more than two weeks we've decided to close the poll about our X2 Base Mechanics. The results were as follows: The voting pattern for this survey stayed fairly consistent from the very early stages of the voting up to the current level of nearly 2,000 responses: 50% were in favour of the old X1 mechanics, 40% thought the developer should make the decision, and 10% were in favour of the current X2 system. As the stated position of the developers is that switching back to the old X1 system would be better, the results overwhelmingly support the old X1 mechanics over the current X2 ones. As such, we're planning to immediately start work on implementing the old multiple-base system with the goal of getting it functional before we launch into Early Access. The specifics of the system will be as follows: All bases will have a construction grid upon which you can build base structures All bases can house aircraft and radars We will support X1-style base defence missions where you fight in a battle in a replica of your base, barring any unforeseen technical issues that prevent this The X2 system where you can assign scientists / engineers to specific buildings will be retained Dropships will fly around the map like they do in X1, and can carry out multiple missions in sequence (and be shot down) etc Your organisation will be able to build multiple dropships Staff and items will be global resources, so you can assign your staff to structures in any of your bases and your soldiers to any dropship The decision to make staff and items global is not necessarily our final decision on the matter, but we're going to see how the global setup plays before we make any further decisions. Making staff and items specific to each base is going to require a lot of coding time, is going to force the addition of a lot of new UI, and is going to react in an uncertain way with several game mechanics we're still experimenting with (like Strategic Operations). We'll therefore be making a decision on that issue later in development once we have a better feel for how it will affect gameplay. I hope the 10% of people that voted for the X2 mechanics don't feel too let down by this change, and I apologise if anyone bought the game on the premise that it would have the X2 base mechanics only to find they are now getting a game with the X1 base mechanics instead. Really, all I can say is that having tested both models I genuinely feel like the X1 mechanics are the best choice for the game. Thanks for reading!
  14. 3 points
    @stewpidbear Depends upon the budget for art assets, I'd say. I can recover items from downed fighters as a Strategic Op. To minimise UI management, could the same be done for ordinary UFOs? You still get the option for getting a fixed amount immediately, or you can assign agents to oversee the cutting up of the UFO, and get a bonus to the artifacts rcovered, or possibly unique artifacts as a reward. Narratively, it could be described as either letting the funding bloc the ufo crashed in do most of the grunt work in removing the ufo, and paying a tithe in the form of alien artifacts tto the funding bloc, or assigning your own teams supervised by an agent - each agent assigned represents a Xenonauts team. I mean, is there any artwork for engineers/scientists that could be used so you can send engineers and/or scientists off to recover a UFO? That wold give people the option for complexity without having it forced upon them, similar to being able to airstrike a downed UFO instead of having to GC every ufo you come across.
  15. 3 points
    The original Xenonauts lived up to the original XCOM and surpassed it notably in a superior air combat section and better art direction while preserving the best parts of the ground combat and discarding the chaff. I had hoped that Xenonauts 2 would surpass it even further, especially visually, in one of the biggest selling points was the new 3D game engine. What was already a beautifully realized game, I thought backing it would have resulted in something of a refinement rather than steps backwards and now I regret trusting them to stick to their original vision and instead give into a few noisy individuals. Instead we're treated to generic tetris-looking 'ships' rendered as alien storage units landing on earth. While you may have wanted UFO wall breaching, there's no reason to include it at all. It certainly does not improve the game play, despite what a vocal minority would have us believe. This is coming someone who bought the original game in 2012 when it was still in early access, played about 250+ hours of the original, CE and Xdivision combined. (Which I admit, doesn't make me the most veteran of players, but I think after that period of time I know what I like.) The original was nearly perfect. It was exactly what it needed to be and fit the vision of a spiritual remake of the original game as well as updating it to more modern mechanical and design sensibilities. The way Xenonauts 2 looks is a step backwards from the original, which I find very disappointing. There are things I like about X2, mostly the update to a modern time (I liked the Cold War thing too, but this is a fresh take on it.) and the new engine (Aside from the awful UFOs the rest looks really good. Though, to be a bit nitpicky, I kind of liked the old Ceseans. They weren't Sectoids which was a nice change, though I'm sure more visual distinction won out in the end which I fully appreciate.) Ultimately, I could have probably dealt with the air combat being boring, but what drew me to Xenonauts originally was the aesthetic. Everything worked together so well that even if there were weird LOS bugs or situations where it felt like you got shot through a wall, it wasn't a big deal because the whole experience was so put together. Now it looks like placeholder graphics were left in the game and frankly, it looks jarring and cheap when you see them in any context. Some people perhaps don't think that matters because as long as they get to explode the walls of the alien storage sheds with high explosives, they will be happy. Unfortunately, we went from very impressive looking designs to chasing down and trying to shoot down flying U-haul lots so you can invade them and play a very violent version of Storage Wars with the occupants. Aesthetics are important. That's the reason the Empire from Star Wars is so popular. Can you imagine people thinking the Empire is cool if the ships were just big rubix's cubes or flying tiles? It would probably drag down the appeal of the entire franchise. It would be like playing Doom or something and they replaced the Imps with pixelated Pac Man ghosts. No explanation for it. They're just there and you gotta kill them. Defenders come on and say that their big problem with Doom was the lack of 2D enemies because that's what was in the old game. Frankly, it just looks stupid and I'm finding myself wanting to just go play Phoenix Point or stick with CE and Xdivision. I know at some point a design decision was made to scrap the original UFO designs because you really wanted to accommodate players like stewpidbear who really wanted hull breaching and the simplest way to do that was to make flying plates of alienium brownies. I can tell you though, that there are players like me who thought the way UFOs were done in the original was perfectly fine and frankly think hull breaching is not only an unnecessary mechanic but one that reduces the enjoyment of the experience. What do I mean? When you design a dungeon (which is essentially what a UFO is) you can make decisions about cover layout, entries and exits. Enemy positions. When you allow anyone to just blow any wall down, most of that changes. If you follow a rule in which the layouts make logical sense (I.E. Do not assume your hull wall is worthless because it will be breached) then there will become an optimal entry point to any UFO, which at that point, means that you might as well just make that the assumed door for design and balance. If you chose to gamify it further than you have, then you would make the inside of a UFO equally protective towards any potential entrance, thus invalidating the entire point of breaching the hull. From a design and gameplay perspective, I just don't see any reason to include it if you have to sacrifice style and visual consistency. I want to end this by saying that I know you guys have put a lot of work into this and I do feel a bit bad tearing you down when I know you've spent the last 5 years on this. My reaction is out of love for what Xenonauts is and what Xenonauts 2 could be. I love most of what you've done, but these things, for me are dealbreakers. Who knows, maybe I'm the only one who feels this way, and if so, carry on. Thanks for making the original game and bringing me and many others so much enjoyment.
  16. 3 points
    Teleportation was a solution to the terrible 1-base decision, since you had to reach every apart of the globe from 1 location. If multi-bases are in, then teleportation is not needed. I despise teleportation, not only because of narrative and world-building reasons and the the massive can of worms it opens, but because of the mechanical implications. (Also, Stargate turned to trash, the only thing saving it was good cast chemistry and banter. And the elder race tropes are in my opinion generally terrible - anything that treats science as magic is) X-Com games have NOT been just about squad-level tactics. If that is what one is after, there are many games that do it a LOT better (Jagged Alliance 2 for example). Planning and logistics on a grander scale are - to me - the defining aspect of X-Com. Hence, when such is trivilized with magitech teleportation that makes logistic utterly irrelevant (base location does not matter, travel time does not matter, local resource managment does not matter) it leaves a poor taste in my mouth. Also, having a single base, a single point of faliure is a really bad idea for any military group.
  17. 3 points
    Yeah, so this discussion sort of explains why we shouldn't try to implement multiple dropships right now - we need to nail down exactly what that means first. If the personnel that can be assigned to the dropship remain global, multiple dropships becomes a far simpler task (in some ways it's actually easier than having to special-case the existence of a single dropship but still allow it to be replaced if shot down etc), but I'm not sure everyone would consider that a valid implementation.
  18. 3 points
    I agree with Bobit. I can't really wrap my head around why it would be good to limit the player to one dropship. First of all, the possibility for multiple dropships exists in X1 already (and is useful in X-Division at least), second I want to lead a global (para-)military unsurgency operation, not a squad of comically overpowered popcorn cinema heros like in FiraXCOM, and multiple cells are definitely part of this, third I always find it bad if my decision space is artificially limited, and fourth it may make it harder for modders to take that limitation out again, so why not just allow it in the first place? The rest sounds sensible though. Energy need as a limiting factor for base growth sounds good, but I would also be okay with an energy-less system like X1, where money and the base size were limiting you. If the energy system does something unique there, go for it.
  19. 3 points
    Today we're releasing a second hotfix for Beta Build V4 from last week - there were quite a few crashes left in the game so we've taken a bit of time out to fix the worst offenders. Hopefully this will be a much more stable experience for everyone to enjoy. Changelog: Fixed a crash that would occur at the end of the first turn of any combat mission that contained an alien with a shield, as the AI previously wasn't set up to handle it. Fixed a crash that occurs at the end of a ground combat mission (this was related to the soldier fatigue system we'll be introducing soon). Fixed a crash that would occur if you took a Laser Rifle or Laser Shotgun into battle (turns out I'd accidentally set these to regenerate HP rather than ammo). Fixed an issue where the soldier assignment list for Strategic Operations would not display correctly on non-16:9 screen resolutions. Fixed an issue where aliens would sometimes go into a T-pose for a few seconds when crouching or uncrouching. If a soldier is killed in battle, their slot now remembers their equipment so you can easily replace them with someone new. Personnel screen should now show the correct TU values for soldiers, rather than the values they had at the end of the last turn on their previous mission. Added a missing move path preview tile for a soldier making a diagonal move onto the bottom of a ladder. I think those three crashes accounted for most of the crashes people were experiencing in the game, but please let us know if you experience more crashes. I'd rather not spend any more time on hotfixes unless there's more big crashes we don't know about... but we'll see what bug reports come in and make a judgement on that. Incidentally, the bug reports over the past week or so have been really helpful - we added a lot of content in this build and it wasn't practical for me to test it all, so it's been great having you guys keeping us informed on what doesn't work properly
  20. 2 points
    Recently I had been streaming a run of X-Division, and kept wondering about the discrepancy where aliens can auto fire their cannons, but we can usually only get one shot. Initially, I had wondered if they could made to reload. Then, Charon pointed out something I had completely skipped over, figuring it was nothing new. In the attachment, there is a screenshot for the description for the Phaser Pistol, and technically all alien guns. I just wanted to see if Xeno 2 might be able to borrow this particular lore, because my mind was friggin blown by how much sense this made.
  21. 2 points
    I have units with bravery over 100, and with half their TUs or more left(60-90/120+), a few steps out of the dropship, morale through the roof from taking out 6 dudes in one round, and still wind up with up to 5 Mind controlled without many issues. I'm pretty sure something's bugged out of control with it. You can just reload the save, though. Mind War turns off entirely, teleporters turn off, and you can't target any units until your next turn for...some reason.
  22. 2 points
    Simple idea to allow us to configure autosaving, or just autosave more in general. Couple hooks that should trigger an auto_save, and name the save accordingly: before_interception - Before entering air combat after_interception - After air combat before_mission_start - Before combat starts, when you load it, you are exactly as you were just before, including any squad changes after_mission - When combat finishes. mission_turn_X - At the start of every turn of mission This would help greatly with testing, as not only you always have a save to submit from before/after, but also if the game crashes, you didn't really lose progress.
  23. 2 points
    If you wouldnt have written that statement, i would have ><.
  24. 2 points
    When it comes to base defense missions, it's a feature I care the least about. You could make a battle outside of the base or a simple attack mechanics (e.g. power of attack/defense and assessing losses). Sometimes a UFO could land nearby and those would be like missions with higher difficulty levels. There are so many more important features that I wouldn't even know which to start with. Thus, I think adding this functionality would be a waste of time.
  25. 2 points
    I have been reading everything and i think these features would form the best game: YES - to a single main unattackable base. This would house ALL personell, including soldiers, scientist, engineers and other possible specialists. This base will be mainly responsible for power management and other, global upgrades. YES - to multiple (possibly infinite ) secondary bases which house radars, hangars, laboratories, workshops, possible generators, and all other, "real" tangible buildings. These are attackable bases and aliens can and will be able to attack them. Making them small, operatable bases with interesting building layouts, eg. being able to place corrdidors, and defensive structures in addition to the main buildings will make for more interesting decisions. Secondary bases are essential if you want to get any research, manufacture or other project done. It houses hangars for the aircraft which are essential to shoot down UFOs, and the planes have real range limitations ( at first - similar to X1 ). Since they are small players should be expected to place at least 2 - 3 right at the start, maybe make one science and one engineering base preloaded for the player to place at the start of the game. YES - to location specific boni/mali for secondary bases. One country can give a scienc bonus, and an aircraft range mali. YES - to boni for specialised bases, eg. building 2 workshops beside each other grants a +10% work efficiency and total work space - for each additional workshop. When scientist/engineers/specialists are working in a secondary base they are physically transfered there. This means the omnipotent teleporter array will have to leave a port open to that specific base - which consumes energy. Energy is mainly transfered from the main base, but smaller generators can be build in that specific base to relieve some of the stress, but only in that local base. The open port can only be filled with energy from the main base. More about that in the image below. If a base gets attacked, you will get asked whether or not you want to send in a team to defend your secondary base. YES - to global personal and storage. The main point of having more than 1 dropship is to have a bigger gang roaming around. X1 had the problem with your rooster actually being distributed over physical bases, which led to a lot of micromanagement, but having a single main base housing all your soldiers, and sending one team to defend a base, while having another one doing a small crashsite is not different from having 2 dropships - just with the added bonus of easier management, global soldier selection, item management, and equipment screen. YES - to possibly infinite dropships, or rather open teleporter arrays. Each open teleporter spot requires energy, and needs to be open as long as the ground combat is out there and fighting. So if you want to send out another team through the teleporter ( and also guarantee a way back in case of abortion ), you will need to pay the additional energy for each and every team. To avoid exploitation of the system, rerouting power can take between 24 - 48 hours ( so you cant just quickly power down something else to get a triple team ). And dont give me that "But why cant we send another team to the same mission ?" crap. X1 didnt allow for 2 chinooks to land in the same mission, and there wasnt an explanation for that either. Here is an original idea: I would like for ground combat missions to take up actual time. So lets say every turn is 10 minutes on the geoscape. You play for 12 turns and the mission takes up 2 hours. Once its finished you get teleported back to "when the mission started" and the geoscape will have an icon with "Team A fighting Crashsite - 3". You can resume normally, while already knowing the result of the fight. In this time you can potentially take on another mission, as long as your teleporter has enough energy. This idea would include the ground combat mission day - night state to change accordingly to the real geoscape time, eg. you can start fighting during the day, and after some time it starts to dusk. Now to the side/top view issue. In this setup i wouldnt mind it running either way. If you have confidence in your engine providing a good vertical firefight than make everything a side view. If you are not, than keep the fight horizontally and make the secondary bases with a top down view. The main base can be a side view, it looks quite good that way.
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