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Chris

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

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Another quick hotfix for Beta Build V15 that we released recently, fixing a few more of the key bugs. You'll need to be on the Experimental Branch to access the build.

There will be another hotfix coming after this one, as there are several bugs we are still trying to fix. The biggest of these is an issue where the shroud stops clearing during combat missions. You can fix this issue by saving and reloading the game - but unfortunately that makes it really difficult to reproduce and fix. If you experience that bug, it'd be good if you could post up the logs and saves in this thread as we've made some changes in this hotfix that should allow us to reproduce it more easily.

Bugfixes:

  • Fixed a crash that occurs when a Xenonaut is mind controlled.
  • Fixed an AI hang that could occur during the alien turn.
  • Fixed the Armour dropdown on the Soldier Equip screen.
  • Fixed base structures deducting their construction cost again once building finishes.
  • Fixed the game crashing at the start of a Base Defence mission.
  • Fixed the game crashing if you loaded a save game where a UFO on a Base Defence mission was present.
  • Fixed an AI hang that could occur when an AI unit moved through stun gas and was stunned.
  • Aircraft now regain the ability to perform an Evasive Roll when you remove heavy armour from it. 
  • Base Stores screen item list can now be scrolled.
  • You can now demolish the Living Quarters building without getting a pop-up that prevents you interacting with the game.
  • Fixed the Training values on the Base screen being hooked up incorrectly.
  • Fixed several of the upgradeable buildings having the wrong image in their active / deactivated states.
  • Light drone explosion should no longer appear pink (hopefully).
  • Removed a pink error texture from the destroyed MARS.
  • Fixed various placement issues with the Geoscape topbar on 21:9 and 16:10 resolutions.

Other Updates:

  • All maps now have a border of impassable black tiles, which means you no longer see things that are "under" the map at the edges of the playable space.
  • Androns now have a better walk animation and a proper death animation, so don't just T-pose in the ground on death any more.
  • There's now a better animation for the stun baton attack swing.
  • Humans and certain aliens (Psyons / Sebillians / Wraiths) now hold pistols out in front of them, which makes it much easier to tell the difference between an unarmed unit and a pistol-armed unit.
  • Added some extra / updated research text.
  • Added new research art for Laser Weapons and Alien Magnetic Weapons.
  • Scout UFO research has been merged with UFO Design Analysis, which is required for the future UFO projects to unlock.
  • Alien Facility is now unlocked via constructing the Quantum Decoder (itself unlocked via Alien Biology), and the Alien Dreadnought has been temporarily disabled. The Alien Facility now has AI waypoints in it, so the aliens will not all immediately rush you at the start of the game (although most of them seem to do it anyway).
  • Alien Facility mission now has more doors in it.
  • Added placeholder art for the Alloy Forge and Alenium Centrifuge.
  • Sebillian Brute textures are a bit less bright than they were before.
  • Temporarily disabled the grass billboards on the Farm biome, because they look terrible in the built game for some reason.
  • Fixed some z-fighting on the portacabin tiles on the Dock raid biome.
  • Updated the double doors on the various Farm biome barns.
  • Arid field ground tiles are now destructible.
  • Various visual issues in the outer borders of UFO interiors have been fixed.
  • Updated the text on the Region panic critical / region lost pop-ups to be more informative.
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Thanks for the next Hotfix. We will test it asap.

I think 15.3 will come in the next Days (if it takes long at the beginning next week). And if my feeling is correct, then Beta 16 get a Christmas Present.

Edited by Alienkiller
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7 hours ago, Chris said:

All maps now have a border of impassable black tiles, which means you no longer see things that are "under" the map at the edges of the playable space. 

Sounds like you could extend that border so we could use it to turn our soldiers?

 

Thanks for the patch :) I will download it and try it out.

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I spent quite a bit of time testing it this afternoon and there's still a number of bugs in it that need fixing (*sigh*) so another hotfix will likely be incoming tomorrow, but please do report any more bugs you find (particularly if you encounter that shroud not clearing issue). Hopefully three is the magic number!

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Yep, there are some not funny Bugs left (like the invisible MARS or pink MARS), Researches like the Alien Magnetic Weapons comes tripple after new or more Parts get picked up and some more.

For the next Versions (Christmas to February) we have much to to and my suggestens are:

1. get in Special Missions for testing (which are not in the Game yet)

2. get the small abonded Xenonaut Bases useable in the World and not buyable Ground (the costs are to high for only the Ground and the first buildings)

3. Special Teams which pick up UFOs etc. without an Combat Team (shoot down Bombers, Fighters etc.)

4. get old Buildings (like the first Radar, Living Room etc. changeable for another use or sellable after demolishing to get some Money)

Such Things are cool stuff and would increase the Mananagement on Geoscape as well as the Bases themselfs.

Edited by Alienkiller

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11 hours ago, Chris said:

I spent quite a bit of time testing it this afternoon and there's still a number of bugs in it that need fixing (*sigh*) so another hotfix will likely be incoming tomorrow, but please do report any more bugs you find (particularly if you encounter that shroud not clearing issue). Hopefully three is the magic number!

I know its a beta test but still what is the point in releasing public versions without any internal testing? Most bugs of v15 could be found by a single tester in a single day of testing at your side and you could release a much more solid build for public testing then. But you release an untested version and a bunch of hotfixes then making players test the same content again and again what is borring so less players will want to test it and you get less feedback.

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The more Testers we are in that Beta-Versions the better it is. Chris and his team are doing the correct way, to give us 60 % the unstable Betas and for the other 40 % of Testers the stable Builds for an second Check.

So we can work out an playable, stable and interessting Early Access for the Public and can make the last adjustments for the final Version. That show a good preperation from the Devs, her Freelancers etc. and how good we Founders and Betatesters did our Job.

Goldhawk could do it like all the others and give the a 08/15 Scrap on the Market. But we work on that Game and it belongs to all of us Beta-Testers that the Game get ready, interessting playable and with working Features no one has seen before in an Early Access.

Rusknight: Such announcements like yours demoralize the Moral of the Devs and the other Beta-Testers which all give their best to make an Game that outperform all competitor products (the new XCOM-Series, UFO ET-Series, Phoenix Point etc.).

Edited by Alienkiller

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25 minutes ago, Alienkiller said:

The more Testers we are in that Beta-Versions the better it is. Chris and his team are doing the correct way, to give us 60 % the unstable Betas and for the other 40 % of Testers the stable Builds for an second Check.

So we can work out an playable, stable and interessting Early Access for the Public and can make the last adjustments for the final Version. That show a good preperation from the Devs, her Freelancers etc. and how good we Founders and Betatesters did our Job.

Goldhawk could do it like all the others and give the a 08/15 Scrap on the Market. But we work on that Game and it belongs to all of us Beta-Testers that the Game get ready in an Early Access.

Rusknight: Such announcements like yours demoralize the Moral of the Devs and the other Beta-Testers which all give their best to make an Game that outperform all competitor products (the new XCOM-Series, UFO ET-Series, Phoenix Point etc.).

You wrote a lot but there is no answer to my simple question: whats the problem to spend a single day of testing by a single tester internally to release a more solid build not to make everybody test the same content with hotfixes again again?
 

I can speak for myself: I simply skiped v15 and v15.1 cause I knew they will be very buggy and I dont want to lose my time by starting playing and then geting new hotfix in a couple of days and starting playing again. So I waited for v15.2 and now I think I should wait for v15.3 maybe for my playtrough. I think many potential testers  are frustrated with all these hotfixes too so devs  simply get less testers and less feedback as a result.
 

 

Edited by Rusknight

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Exactly that attitude is it, why we get only 40 to 50 % playable 08/15-Scrap on the Market, which get played 2 Days and then get in the Trash.

Some exeptions are there like Battletech from HBS, the Games from Paradox, the new XCOM-Series / Civilatzion-Series from Firaxis, the Warcraft- and StarCraft-Series from Blizzard.

Therefore we all are Beta-Testers before the Game comes to an Early Access and Ready Status for it.

And to answer your Question: 1 Betatester can´t do that, then the WIP needs 1 or 2 Month for a Hotfix and Game-Development need over 10 Years. That´s the Answer, look at the Development from UFO2ET. Before Release they found over 1.000 Bugs and the Game won´t come out before 2021, if we get unhappy exactly to the Time the Early Access from Xenonauts 2 should come.

So the only Answer can be: The more Testers play the same Version the more Bugs can be found and fixed faster.

I only stoped playing if the Bugs are to heavy and the Game makes CTD´s in rotation.

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1 hour ago, Rusknight said:

I know its a beta test but still what is the point in releasing public versions without any internal testing? Most bugs of v15 could be found by a single tester in a single day of testing at your side and you could release a much more solid build for public testing then. But you release an untested version and a bunch of hotfixes then making players test the same content again and again what is borring so less players will want to test it and you get less feedback.

If you want to hold off on testing the game until there's fewer bugs in it then that's fine, but it's not true that one tester can test the game for one day and find all the bugs (otherwise no games would ever be released with bugs in them). Different players play the game in different ways, and have different computers with different hardware and software setups. Even if I spent an entire week playing the game there'd still be a whole bunch of bugs I've never seen but other users would experience within ten minutes of starting to play the game. And if I spend too long playing the game, I stop noticing the problems entirely because you learn to work around them.

You've also got to think about what the person doing the testing could do with that time instead. If I spent 8 hours playing the game to find bugs every time we do a release, that's 8 hours I'm not designing levels or balancing the game or writing research text for the game, etc. If one of the programmers or artists does it, that's 8 hours they're not doing their normal jobs. If we hire a tester to do it, that's money we can't spend on adding content to the game and time spent explaining to that person what actually is a bug and what isn't a bug, etc.

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9 minutes ago, Alienkiller said:

Some exeptions are there like Battletech from HBS, the Games from Paradox, the new XCOM-Series / Civilatzion-Series from Firaxis, the Warcraft- and StarCraft-Series from Blizzard.

Even XCOM2 was a buggy mess for the first few days at launch, despite being a game with a much bigger budget than ours - I lost a couple of Ironman campaigns because of annoying bugs which I wasn't happy about at the time.

It's understandable though. When you're making big complicated games it's very hard to find all the bugs because there's so much content and so many different ways to play, even if you have a proper QA team backing you up.

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Chris with that I mean that the Base Version is stable and playable in normal Difficultys and not in Ironman Modes. Yes all Games still have smaller Bugs left and get fixed with Patches. But the Devs upgrade the Game later with DLC´s and improving it with missing Features then the next years and get Patches for longer time. XCOM 2 get a very long derivative after the last DLC WotC. But big Companys or such which give up her Crowfounding way have then a time limit Problem, like Phoenix Point shows as a best example.

The Devs here (the Gollop Brothers from orignal X-Com) try to save the Game with Patch-Marathons as well as 2 fast DLC´s since the Base Game comes out. A 3rd DLC is in the Making, because the first 2 dosen´t bring the hoped rescue success.

Smaller Development Studios like Goldhawk have to bring out an very cool Game with the Base Game-Status. Therefore we all have to work hard with a limited Budget. For the final Stage of the Game (Early Access) I give Chris 100 % right to give the Public a Base-Version they never will forgett.

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18 minutes ago, Chris said:

If you want to hold off on testing the game until there's fewer bugs in it then that's fine, but it's not true that one tester can test the game for one day and find all the bugs (otherwise no games would ever be released with bugs in them). Different players play the game in different ways, and have different computers with different hardware and software setups. Even if I spent an entire week playing the game there'd still be a whole bunch of bugs other users would experience within ten minutes of starting to play the game. And if I spend too long playing the game, I stop noticing the problems entirely because you learn to work around them.

You've also got to think about what the person doing the testing could do with that time instead. If I spent 8 hours playing the game to find bugs every time we do a release, that's 8 hours I'm not designing levels or balancing the game or writing research text for the game, etc. If one of the programmers or artists does it, that's 8 hours they're not doing their normal jobs. If we hire a tester to do it, that's money we can't spend on adding content to the game and time spent explaining to that person what actually is a bug and what isn't a bug, etc.

I didnt say one tester can find everything in one day but most critical and obvious bugs of v15 like twice money deduction for buildings or AI refusing to move in battle - it can be found in first 30 min of testing indeed.
I am game developer myself for more than 15 years already and for me its weird to release any public builds (even beta) without internal testing for the reasons mentioned above. But sure its your business and you can do it the way you want - I just expressed my opinion here and wont argue on it anymore. 

Edited by Rusknight

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Rusknight if you are a Game Developer why not helping the Devs in Programming etc. You are practitioneer and every helping Hand the Devs may get need.

I´m not a Developer, but I can test the Versions in every Aspect as good as I can.

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1 minute ago, Alienkiller said:

Rusknight if you are a Game Developer why not helping the Devs in Programming etc. You are practitioneer and every helping Hand the Devs may get need.

I´m not a Developer, but I can test the Versions in every Aspect as good as I can.

I already have a full time job in gamedev I am paid for
So I play xeno like other games in my free time just for fun
I dont even pretend to be a tester here though I reported some bugs before

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18 minutes ago, Rusknight said:

I didnt say one tester can find everything in one day but most critical and obvious bugs of v15 like twice money deduction for buildings or AI refusing to move in battle - it can be found in first 30 min of testing indeed.
I am game developer myself for more than 15 years already and for me its weird to release any public builds (even beta) without internal testing for the reasons mentioned above. But sure its your business and you can do it the way you want - I just expressed my opinion here and wont argue on it anymore. 

OK, thanks. I appreciate you giving your opinion. If you're a game developer yourself you'll know QA is a cycle rather than a single test though, right? We only have time for one or two quick rounds of internal playtesting for each build and it doesn't catch everything (although it does catch a lot of bugs you guys never see and hear about because they get fixed before the build is released).

For example, we did some internal playtesting and discovered the aliens weren't interacting with their move nodes properly and so were trying to run around way more than they should. We fixed that issue just before the V15 release, but that fix was what caused the AI to not move. We didn't encounter that bug because we'd already done our internal playtesting at that point. I entirely missed the double deduction for buildings bug even after at least an hour of playing the game (probably because I spend most of the starting money at the beginning of the game so it didn't affect me).

Also, we do most of our playtesting within Unity because that makes things way easier for us given the compilation times of a build and the debug features that exist within Unity - I'm sure you understand that as a game developer. But obviously that means any bugs that exist only in the built game get caught far less often, etc.

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I am curious....how long does it take to compile the game and what hardware do you use to do it? Can it take advantage of high thread counts(like a threadripper number?)

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1 hour ago, odizzido said:

I am curious....how long does it take to compile the game and what hardware do you use to do it? Can it take advantage of high thread counts(like a threadripper number?)

We don't compile our builds on our own machines because we don't want to lock up a developer's PC for a couple of hours while the compiling happens, so it all runs on a seperate build server. It's just a standard midrange PC from a few years ago and it usually takes a couple of hours to compile a build and upload it to Steam - but the first time we do a build for each new release / hotfix it takes 12+ hours to download all the required files and compile the asset bundles. The main bottleneck for that sort of thing is actually hard drive speed rather than CPU, and the machine has an NVME hard drive in it so there's not a lot we can easily do to speed things up on the hardware side of things.

There's a few things we might look into to reduce the size of the game and the git repos (which would speed up the initial setup time for each branch) but that's not something we'd do when we're releasing hotfixes on relatively short timetables like we are now.

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