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Chris

Xenonauts-2 Closed Beta Build V15 Released (Experimental Branch)

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Closed Beta Build V15 has now been released on Steam and GOG. Note that this build is only available on our Experimental branch so you'll need to switch over to get this update (instructions on how to do that here).

This build follows on from the release of V14 less than a month ago and includes a number of new upgrades. This update is a substantial improvement on the last build and now we've finished most of the core gameplay systems hopefully we can continue to deliver significant gameplay improvements each month!

We'll be releasing some additional UI and research text updates as part of the first hotfix, which will likely arrive on Friday - so please give the build a test and let us know if you encounter any bugs as we can roll those fixes into that update too!

Key Highlights:

  • Undersuits: we've added a new type of soldier armour to the game in the form of an "undersuit". This is a vest worn under the normal armour that provides a small bonus to the soldier, which can be anything from a small increase in Armour to improved strength and mobility to a small amount of automatic healing each turn.
  • Training System: the soldier training system has been reimplemented. This is now a passive system where each soldier at a base gains a certain amount of progress in all of their skills each day provided there is enough training space available for them to use. The rate of training is relatively slow at the start of the game but as you learn more about your enemies through autopsies and interrogation of captured aliens, your training becomes more effective. Provided you are taking advantage of this system, new recruits will level up much faster at the end of the game than they did at the start - which means it's not completely crippling when you lose a veteran soldier on a mission.
  • Base Building Disabled states: it is now possible to deactivate base buildings that require Power. Deactivated buildings provide no benefits but also consume no Power, which means you don't necessarily need enough power to operate all your buildings simulateneously - if you want to run your Alloy Forge for a bit, you could temporarily deactivate your Defence Batteries, etc.
    • This system means you no longer require Power to start constructing a building. If you have insufficient Power to activate a building when it finishes construction, it simply goes into its deactivated state. This means you can now freely place down as many structures as you like when constructing a base, rather than having to wait for a Generator to come online before you can start building anything that requires Power.
  • Alloy Forge / Alenium Centrifuge: we've added two new buildings to the game that require rather lot of Power to operate and are used in conjuction with the Workshop. Completing tactical missions now results in recovering Unrefined Alloys and Depleted Alenium alongside the standard Alloys / Alenium. These two items are bulky and useless, but with an active Forge or Centrifuge the player can run an engineering project that converts them into standard Alloys / Alenium. The buildings also unlock the ability to produce Alloys and Alenium on the engineering screen using only money, but that project is expensive and time consuming and should only be used if absolutely necessary!
  • Updated Research Tree: I spent quite a bit of time reworking the Research tree so it has more choices and is better organised. I'm working on the principle that every research project unlocks something useful (unless it's an autocompleted project), and to give the player the option to either go deep on a particular research topic (like weapons) and unlock advanced equipment in that area fairly early in the game, or to spread their efforts more widely and ensure they are making steady progress in all major areas of the game.
  • New Ground Tiles: we've now put the updated ground tiles in place for all six crashsite / raid biomes. Although there's still some way to go on the visuals the maps now feel much cleaner and crisper (to me at least).
  • Ground Destruction: the ground destruction overlay system from X1 is now functional. Ground tiles should display a damaged or destroyed decal when they take damage, and 3D objects (like cabbages) that are part of the tile should also be destroyed appropriately.
  • Engineering / Xenopedia Categories: both the Engineering screen and the Xenopedia screen previously became totally unmanagable once you reached the mid-game, so we've added collapsible categories to both screens to make them easier to use.
  • New Art: a few improvements here:
    • We've added a couple of new painted backgrounds to the game on the Research and Stores screens, and we've also added a little parallax animation and ambient sound as you enter the screen to make it feel a bit less static.
    • There's new side-on art for the Accelerated Ballistics weapon family.
    • The Abductor, the fourth type of UFO, has migrated from being a grey box to a proper textured model.

Gameplay Updates:

  • It now costs 3 / 5 TU for a straight / diagonal move in the tactical combat, instead of 4 / 6 TU. This effectively means every unit can move 33% further than in the last build, which should make the combat feel a bit more fluid.
  • Shotguns now fire three pellets instead of four.
  • Fixed an AI issue that meant that the aliens weren't using their waypoints correctly and were running around way too much inside UFOs.
  • Soldier stats are no longer capped to +30 above starting value, but attributes do now suffer from diminishing returns. 
  • Soldiers that are injured now display a health bar over their heads, and their names are coloured pink in the soldier list.
  • Pressing up and down arrows (or WASD equivalents) on the Soldier Equip screen now scrolls through the soldiers in that category.
  • Additional info is now displayed on the Base screen to do with Defence Strength (for turrets), healing rate and training. I've set up tooltips to explain what each one means.
  • There's some new tiles diagonal floor edges and cosmetic wall "ends" for use within UFOs. The playable space inside each UFO remains the same but they just look a little bit nicer.
  • Pistol animations for both humans and aliens had some very strange behaviour that has now been ironed out.
  • Reduced the volume of various sounds in the game, and reduced the default volume of the music.
  • Androns have now been shrunk down to fit inside the new tile height. Their animations are a bit messed up as a result, but we'll get that fixed over the coming months.
  • Teleporters now make a teleport noise rather than a metal door noise.
  • Buildings on the Base screen are now sorted in a logical order rather than alphabetically.
  • Added additional tooltips to the Base screen, topbar and Soldier Equip screen.

Bugfixes:

  • The ARES should now display correctly on the Soldier Equip screen when constructed.
  • The desert roads that units could not move onto in the previous build should now work properly.
  • 45 degree / 30 degree camera rotation should work work correctly.
  • After loading a save, dead units should no longer display the red hostile target selection square.
  • Alien doors should once again play a noise when opened.
  • Sebillian regeneration now correctly heals bleeding wounds.

As always, please let us know if you encounter any bugs by posting them up on the Bug Reporting subforums. We'll almost certainly be releasing at least one hotfix to address any issues that arise!

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Thanks Chris for the new Version and the missing / new Features. Will test it today evening after comming home (instead Panzer Corps 2 DLC 1). And one more thanks for the announced Hotfix 1 with more missing Elements.

If the Hotfix 1 with the last missing Elements / Features for that Version comes on Friday and get working then you and the whole Team made the best Birthday Present in that bad Year for me and many others. :cool:  

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I wanted to give my first impressions as I am trying the game out since I will only have one proper chance to give them.

First one, load times are not good. I assume this will easily improve though and doesn't concern me at this point.

Second, the initial geoscape music I am listening to is great. I really like it a lot.

Third, I am looking at the weapons to see what I might want to do and how they work and I notice I don't know what the armour does. I will need to load a tactical mission to find out I guess, which is minorly sucky.

Fourth, tactical seems pretty solid so far, minus aliens not moving which looks like a new bug.

Fifth, I would really like to be able to turn my soldiers around when clicking outside of the map.

 

 

And I just finished my first tactical mission. Overall my impression so far is quite positive.

 

Also I just noticed that Toronto, Canada seems to be in China :D

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All that sounds great! Can't wait to check it out finally mid December. Is there still a ban on showing the state of the game in a public video?

22 hours ago, Chris said:

Undersuits: we've added a new type of soldier armour to the game in the form of an "undersuit". This is a vest worn under the normal armour that provides a small bonus to the soldier, which can be anything from a small increase in Armour to improved strength and mobility to a small amount of automatic healing each turn.

Could you consider making that principle more general in terms of game logic for modders (of course I have no idea how it is currently implemented)? Would love to see the possibility of adding helmets, backpacks, boots etc. as armour components.

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22 hours ago, Alienkiller said:

Thanks Chris for the new Version and the missing / new Features. Will test it today evening after comming home (instead Panzer Corps 2 DLC 1). And one more thanks for the announced Hotfix 1 with more missing Elements.

If the Hotfix 1 with the last missing Elements / Features for that Version comes on Friday and get working then you and the whole Team made the best Birthday Present in that bad Year for me and many others. :cool:  

Thanks. We'll do our best with the release on Friday, but no promises. But happy birthday either way! :)

58 minutes ago, odizzido said:

*snip*

Thanks for the comments, glad the overall impression is reasonably good. Part of the load time issues are that we're running the game in debug mode so we can get extra information if it crashes ... but they've got longer in the last few builds and I think we might need to investigate why. I noticed them being particularly bad recently too.

I guess with the armour lack of info you're referring to the Soldier Equip screen, right? The number on the shield is how much armour that soldier currently has so you can infer the stats from how much the armour and weight goes up when it's equipped, but I guess you're right that there's no way to view a single tooltip that displays the information in one place (which is only really armour, stat bonuses and weight). I'll note that down.

I'll see if I can find Toronto too!

49 minutes ago, Dagar said:

All that sounds great! Can't wait to check it out finally mid December. Is there still a ban on showing the state of the game in a public video?

Could you consider making that principle more general in terms of game logic for modders (of course I have no idea how it is currently implemented)? Would love to see the possibility of adding helmets, backpacks, boots etc. as armour components.

The armour module system is already very generic and it'd be rather easy to set up custom equipment slots in the code, but again it's really a question of where it would fit in the UI (which is already very complex on that screen). So I guess it's a scope question to discuss with X2:CE when we finally get around to giving the community the tools they need to make mods.

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@odizzido:

Thanks for your first impressions, and I wanna bring in some more Information after testing.

1: You mentioned the Loading Times. Yep there I agree fully, I could watch TV and Playing togehter. The Loading Times incl. Beta 14 were much faster (about 1 Minute or so). But I personally think that has something to do with the Map-Upgrades and Bugfixes there. Therefore we make the Ballancing Test since yesterday to the normal Bughunting since the first playable Beta.

2: You mentionend the Sound and Musik. Yep the upgraded / refited / bugfixed Sound an Musik on Geoscape, Basemanagement, Airfight and in the Groundfights get realy good against the predecessor sound which we had in Beta 14. Some Ballances here and there and it´s getting to almost perfect state.

3a: You mentioned the Weapons and Armors. The existing Versions of Weapons get graphically upgraded / refited and working very good. The cool Ballance there is that the Alien Weapons (Gauss or what it is) can´t shoot with automatic at the Beginning but can kill your Soldiers with 1 Hit (Rifles / Pistols). Your underlaying Weapons have all Fire Modes (incl. upgraded Ballistics and the new Laser-Tech-Weapons). The upgraded ballistics in that Beta I can´t evaluate about an CTD to the monthly allowance [January / February / following monthes].

3b: You mentioned the Weapons and Armors. The existing Versions of Armors get graphically upgraded / refited and working very good. The cools Ballance there is that the Alien Weapons (Gauss or what it is) can hit your Soldiers only in the Suits very hard and can kill them. The Cevlar-Vest for your Guys help to reduce a Hit 1 Time with light to medium wounds. That I know from the Beta-Tests incl. Beta 14. The researchable Warden-Vest I can´t evaluate about an CTD to the monthly allowance [January / February / following monthes].

3c: The new Undersuits can only be testet after the monthly allowance CTD get solved. So I can play atm January and then is Game Over. Means that I can´t say something to the new Layer which you can research and produce and wearing under your Suits or new researched Armors.

4: You mentiond the refitet tactical Maps. Yep, they looks great incl. the UFO´s, Buildings and more live on them with small harvest Structures, better Vegetable etc. Fields or whatever on the new Ground Maps. They look realy great. Sadly the Aliens and People there don´t move or mostly don´t see you. The Aliens do react if you shoot at them or comming to near, but that´s all atm. The Civilians dosen´t move or your AI Helper with a Weapons don´t do anything. In short: It´s a bug.

5: Don´t know what you mean with that, I like the the Ground Maps etc. like they are.

@Dagar:

The Undersuits are new personal Suits for your Soldiers, which you have to produce. They have 2 functions which are already announced and are a must have after the long Tests we have done already. And it is a announced Feature from Kickstarter which is implemented now. There are researchable Add-Ons for all Armor-Types like armor Components. Backbacks, Belts, Boots etc. are already in the Game and come back from the Predecessor for your Soldiers. That we Beta-Testers and everyone who played the first Testversion wanna have back. I think for Modders are many thinks there which they can play with after a Modding Part get in (but not now), because the real Ballance-, Bughunting etc. first beginns with Beta 15 and need a longer time.

@Chris and all other Teammenbers / Freelancers:

Thanks for the cool new Version Beta 15. I have testet it yesterday evening and have seen the outcome for the newest Beta. It´s a big Step forward and announced Features from Kickstarter / on Steam and on the Website come in. First I wanna beginn with the good things I have seen:

1: The Base Buildup isn´t linked to Energy-Centers anymore. That´s a must have Feature. So you can plan your Base Buildups much better. :cool:

2: The Archive get more oversight, which is an very big Step forward to the Archives we had in the predecessor Beta-Versions. The last Step to get it perfect is to implement a scrolling, then it will be perfect! That should happen in the first Hotfix too with the announced more Archive-Entrys.

3: The Soldier-Equipment / Vehicle-Equipment Screen is getting cooler now and the announced Features for that get implemented (Undersuits, more decissions etc.). Exactly that what we wanna see and like the Archive it´s getting perfect with a bit more polishment and fixing some remaining disturbing Polishment Bugs (f. e. the Weight bar).

4: The Upgrade-Abilitys for your Fighters / Vehicles and Soldiers get more ballanced, because everything get considerd in every technology now. ;)

5: The most Upgrades for Fighters / Vehicles and Soldiers are not money intensse anymore. It´s ballanced now to the Things they need (like Alien Alloys, Alien Magnets etc.) which is a must have.

6: New Buildings get in the Game (like the light upgraded Radar-Station since Beta 14) and the new Buildings in Beta 15 for scrapping Alien Alloys and make the Alien Engery-Crystals useable. Sadly I can´t research and build up the new Buildings about an CTD to the announced monthly allowance form January to February.

7: The new Features and Backgrounds from the first Main Departments (Research, Development, Storage, Barracks) looks very cool and the light moving as well as changing Text there is a nice to have and ease the Game a little bit. More of that would give the Game more merriment in the Bases and in other Parts like the Meeting with your Founders etc..

8a: The Geoscape is very good, but some cool things get missing. Like in the first Betas, you get welcomed from your Staff. That get missing since 2 Betas and have to be back in as well as your Staff more implemented there. I know that the Geoscape isn´t ready yet (Special Missions etc. are not implemented) but more implementation there will give the Game more Character and will be a big crack to the Predecessor and more important to the competitors.

8b: The other Point to get the Geoscape more important is that the Outposts should be upgradeable to make them more important. That was mentioned from an other Beta-Tester in a discussion. There I aggree, but the limitation for Scientists and Engeneers have to be still there. My Idea is that 2 or 3 more Scientists / Engeneers can be trained there for your Organisation after your Labs and Workshops get bigger and new / refited Features get back in for your Bases.

8c: One more Point for the Geoscape and the Outposts / Agents. After the enemy UFO shoot down on the Geoscape, where no Combat Team is needed, an automaticaly recovery have to start (Fighters, Bombers, Cruisers etc.) after an Attack on your Outposts / Bases or an intercepton from Allied Fighter / your Fighter Squadrons.

Not only Air Attacks on your Outposts have to be done, Ground Attacks too. Either we have to send a combat Team there or there are Security of your Organisation equipt with your best Weapons / Armor-Variants availible for a Groundfight.

Agents need more assignements and get back to the availible Pool after they done their Job. Atm they can only reduce the Panic Level of a Founder and get lost then forever. It´s a nice Feature, but the Potential there is wasted.

Some Expamples they can do:

- Searching abonded Xenonauts Bases (each Country have one smaller Base for Re-Buildup or Re-Organisation)

- Searching for Alien Acitivity in the Founder States (if they find activity an Mission get activated)

- Searching for Human Traitotors (same like above)

- Reducing Panic if needed (already implemented)

- Getting Missions for Money Collecting (like talking to Founders for a Bonus or whatever)

- Getting Informations about the Equipment from Founding States and her Upgrades (maybe as an automatically System)

That´s all for the Moment.

Edited by Alienkiller

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1 hour ago, Alienkiller said:

*snip*

Thanks. When you say the Archive screen needs scrolling, what do you mean? A scrollbar, or scrolling between projects using the arrow keys?

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While we tested the first Betas incl. Beta 14 and the Research Projects had reached the bottom then the latest Projects are completely gone and not saved in the Archives. Your first step to classify the Projects are very good, but won´t solve the proper Issue there. I don´t know what´s your Plan to fix the propper Archive Issue in save all Projects.

I would say both like it is in the Predecessor, because the Research & Development-Information there has at a rough estimate the same size.

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6 hours ago, Alienkiller said:

@odizzido:

5: Don´t know what you mean with that, I like the the Ground Maps etc. like they are.

I am talking about when you right click to look around with your soldiers. It seems that you cannot right click outside of the map boundary to look in a direction, it has to be on an in-map tile. This was an issue for me because I was near the edge of a map and wanted to look towards the edge....but I only had a few squares that I could click on to do so. It would have been just a little bit nicer to be able to click anywhere in that direction to turn. It's not super important or anything and it's something I feel I could easily get used to, but as a first impression is was something I noticed. That's why I wanted to mention it.

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@Chris Maybe I didn't notice the armour properly. It could have been a me issue. I will take a better look. What I was meaning is there are tool tips for all the weapons saying their stats but when I selected the armour nothing came up. Maybe I got stuck on not having a tool tip pop up like the rest of the items and I wasn't looking at the stat change properly.

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4 hours ago, Alienkiller said:

While we tested the first Betas incl. Beta 14 and the Research Projects had reached the bottom then the latest Projects are completely gone and not saved in the Archives. Your first step to classify the Projects are very good, but won´t solve the proper Issue there. I don´t know what´s your Plan to fix the propper Archive Issue in save all Projects.

I would say both like it is in the Predecessor, because the Research & Development-Information there has at a rough estimate the same size.

I think this is already fixed in V15. Let me know if it isn't once you're able to play deep enough into the game where scrolling would be needed.

1 hour ago, odizzido said:

I am talking about when you right click to look around with your soldiers. It seems that you cannot right click outside of the map boundary to look in a direction, it has to be on an in-map tile. This was an issue for me because I was near the edge of a map and wanted to look towards the edge....but I only had a few squares that I could click on to do so. It would have been just a little bit nicer to be able to click anywhere in that direction to turn. It's not super important or anything and it's something I feel I could easily get used to, but as a first impression is was something I noticed. That's why I wanted to mention it.

Hmm, this is a fair point. It's not something we can fix easily because the game only registers a click if you click on an actual object in the scene, and the objects stop at the edge of the map - but it may be possible to fix it somehow through code. I'll ask the coders if they know a simple way to do it, if not then it'll become a longer term thing we might take a look at in Early Access.

1 hour ago, odizzido said:

@Chris Maybe I didn't notice the armour properly. It could have been a me issue. I will take a better look. What I was meaning is there are tool tips for all the weapons saying their stats but when I selected the armour nothing came up. Maybe I got stuck on not having a tool tip pop up like the rest of the items and I wasn't looking at the stat change properly.

Yeah, the armour doesn't have tooltips. It's definitely something we should fix, I was just saying it's possible to work around the issue in the short term by inferring the stats from the changes.

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I've noticed that you added a free camera mode, which is cool. And the new sound effects and transitions in the Geoscape, is a nice touch (I always like the little details). And like some others users said, the load times are annoying and I have the game installed in a SSD.

I also saw these buttons at the bottom (manage soldiers/recruit soldiers)

20201119221610_1.thumb.jpg.7cc72dfafa9965d29a33126a9e7541d7.jpg

But it seems they do nothing. Are they supposed to become functional at some point of the campaign?

Do the squares to the left of the names have a purpose?

On a side note, I'd like to ask when we'll have rebindable keys. I'd like to see a todo list with these generic things and other stuff ( I've asked on the discord for some thing like that or a trello site to check development and future updates/features)

Edited by geno

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2 hours ago, geno said:

I've noticed that you added a free camera mode, which is cool. And the new sound effects and transitions in the Geoscape, is a nice touch (I always like the little details). And like some others users said, the load times are annoying and I have the game installed in a SSD.

I also saw these buttons at the bottom (manage soldiers/recruit soldiers)

But it seems they do nothing. Are they supposed to become functional at some point of the campaign?

Do the squares to the left of the names have a purpose?

On a side note, I'd like to ask when we'll have rebindable keys. I'd like to see a todo list with these generic things and other stuff ( I've asked on the discord for some thing like that or a trello site to check development and future updates/features)

Those checkboxes aren't currently functional but they will be in the update tomorrow. We didn't have time to fully implement the changes before the last release.

Rebindable keys are on the to-do list but they're a medium term feature, it's at least a couple of days work for one of our coders and at least in the short term there are more urgent issues to address.

We might do a public issue tracker during Early Access but it's quite a bit of work to maintain that sort of thing (our internal issue tracker is certainly not something the public could understand, so we'd have to duplicate it all) and I don't have the time to spare at the moment, unfortunately!

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