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Chris

Xenonauts-2 October 2021 Update

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With October over, it's once again time for our monthly update. The big news this month has been the release of Closed Beta V22, which is a fairly significant upgrade on previous builds. This is currently only on our Experimental branch but I think it'll be making its way to the main / default Steam and GOG branches in a week or two when it has had a bit more testing. We've done three hotfixes for this build since it was first released and there is a fourth due out shortly that should iron out the most serious remaining bugs we're aware of.

Our priority for V22 has been to improve opening hour or two of the game, which we've done in several ways. The first is to establish the game setting more clearly right from the start of the game, which we've done by adding a short text intro that is played when you start a new campaign. Some of you may remember that we've set Xenonauts 2 a little before the alien invasion properly begins, with the player first having to deal with the Cleaners and transition from being an intelligence agency into being a military organisation, and this is the clearest way we could think of to explain this to the player. Of course, we've also put some further lore and explanation in the first Research project popup that the player gets (which I rewrote for V22).

tactical_polar_1.png

The second thing we've done is to continue to improve the visuals. The new UI visuals for the loading screen and strategy topbar have been added to the game, and all the Xenonauts are now using their final 3D models in the tactical combat. Another cool little detail is that we've added a lot more hairstyles to the 3D models, so now a soldier in the ground combat will change hairstyle and colour to (roughly) match the hair shown in their soldier portrait - something that took a surprisingly long time to implement, but makes your starting squad much more distinctive from one another. The visual updates to the tactical mission environments continue too, with the Polar biome getting some attention this month. I'm pretty pleased with how it's looking now - it's very clean and readable, but I think it also looks pleasant in an unobtrusive way. We'll be moving onto the fourth Biome (likely the Dock) next month.

Thirdly, we've added another dozen maps to the game. There's a lot of Raid missions in the early part of the game, but there was previously only one Raid map per biome. There's now three Raid maps per biome which means there's way more variety in the early missions, something that will improve further once I set up the new mission types in the early game in the next major build. Finally, I also did some more writing / rewriting. I worked on about 10 of the early game research projects and either wrote them from scratch or rewrote them from what we already had.

Anyway, all that content generation has been quite time consuming to do so I think that represents good progress for this month. I'm taking a couple of weeks off in November (it's a long time since I've had a break) but I'm still expecting a decent amount of progress to be made and hopefully we can get V23 out before we break for Christmas!

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Nice Dev-Update. The Game is going on the right Direction now and many Features comes in again after Ballancing and Rework as well as many Prototype-Tests.

I love the Way it´s going too and hope that we can get more of that with R & D-Gapfillers in the next Version. 

Edited by Alienkiller

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1 hour ago, VitaminK said:

Looking good. Enjoy your break, any idea when/what version is going to get us to EA so more of us can play?

Thanks. I'm not 100% sure right now, but I'm feeling a lot happier with the way the game plays right now. I think V22 is a much better experience than the previous build.

I still don't want to commit to a date or timeline but we're definitely approaching the territory where it might be worth kicking off the open beta. Realistically I wouldn't do that before January though, given I'd rather not be stressing about it during the festive season :)

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Cool :) Thanks for the update.

edit---

I just want to say I am really pleased with everything. I am really looking forward to playing through this game in its completed state.

Edited by odizzido

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Yes, it´s a similar Creature in the looking, but it´s not an Tentaculat like in old X-Com. It only looks so, but it´s for the Game and Storyline much important after a while.

You see the other Creature in the Picture, that´s the Reaper (Tentaculat).

Edited by Alienkiller

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