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Author Topic: Released: Alpha 8 - "The Plot Thickens"  (Read 2574 times)

Kyzrati

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Released: Alpha 8 - "The Plot Thickens"
« on: April 26, 2016, 08:33:47 PM »

The latest and greatest Cogmind is now @ Alpha 8 :D

As usual, for some pretty pictures there's the sampling of preview gifs and images, but those just cover supplementary features rather than the true focus of this release.

Scroll down for the full changelog, or read on for the release notes.

Alpha 8 is the first very lore-heavy release. There's been plenty of lore available from terminals before, and a few NPC encounters that shed some light on things, but now we have a new pair of maps dedicated to learning more about what has and is happening in the world. Both of them are found in the caves, meaning all but one of the four primary cave branches are now complete (although there will be one or more even deeper caves in the future).

Unlike previous releases, this one includes fewer features or changes that apply across the entire game, instead focusing more specifically on the new maps, so to reach and experience much of the new content you'll want to explore more of the cave systems.

Among that new content is something I've been talking about for a long time: A lot of NPCs that will tell you more about the world, which includes information and tips that might not be so obvious, or that you may not have figured out on your own yet. These tips could give you an edge when tackling other challenges throughout the world.

(And to save you some time, I'll tell you now: Don't bother trying to get into the locked area at the back of Zion. That's for a later release.)

This is also the first release in which you can learn a larger number of unauthorized hacks via in-game methods. (Much of the remainder will be learnable come Alpha 9.)

Ambient Sound

We've always had some machines that produce sound, though only a limited selection for now (the full range will be added later on once most maps are complete). However, Alpha 8 comes with a new sound-related experiment: map-wide background ambiance!

This will only play in the Caves (lower/upper/proximity), and can be controlled via the "locale" volume setting in your options. If you migrate your settings from a previous version, it will still be set off, so change that if you want to hear what it sounds like. (For those who don't migrate user settings, I've now set the default to on.)

It's just a little test, something I threw in there for fun, which will definitely change at some point. We're still far from being settled on how to handle background sound, aside from my plans to eventually have all machines rumbling and beeping and whatever's appropriate.

Miscellaneous Notes
  • The FOV setting will default to real-time updating with fade-in, and you can now change that behavior in the options menu.
  • Having the analysis data for a given robot is even better now, since it also helps you dodge attacks from that variant.
  • For the longest time Recyclers apparently had an obscure bug in their inventory drop code that was sometimes causing them to skip dropping one or more of the items they'd collected. I always thought that was weird, but imagined I must've coded it that way as part of the salvage process, there being a chance of losing some of the inventory randomly due to collateral damage. On closer inspection for some of the more recent inventory-important encounters, I discovered it was a mistake, and I do believe you should be able to retrieve everything stolen by Recyclers, so that's now possible :D
  • Some of you will be very happy to know that Operators can no longer screw you over at the Recycling entrance, or the Access lift terminal, etc. While I don't think it was necessarily too mean before because--I don't think anyone was aware of this, but--you could theoretically critical your way through those doors even without unlocking them. But now that that particular approach has been removed, it would be too mean. (There are still at least three different non-hacking methods of getting through such doors, though!)

The full Alpha 8 (0.10.160427) changelog:

* NEW: Branch map "Zion"
* NEW: Branch map "[redacted]"
* NEW: 3 new alien artifacts
* NEW: 4 new major NPCs (unique robot classes)
* NEW: 1 more plot-related NPC encounter
* NEW: 1 unique weapon (completely different mechanics)
* NEW: 28 new items
* NEW: Several new common robot classes
* NEW: More lore to uncover in dozens of terminal records
* NEW: Hundreds of lines of minor NPC dialogue covering lore, plot, and in-theme tips
* NEW: Greater variety of cave encounters
* NEW: Experimental map-wide ambient sound in caves (on by default, deactivate via "locale" audio setting in options)
* NEW: Robot analysis benefits include a -5% hit modifier for those attackers (i.e. easier to dodge them)
* NEW: Robot analysis benefits included among full-detail calculations output
* NEW: Real-time FOV updating as obstructions are destroyed (optional)
* NEW: FOV changes revealed via fade-in (optional)
* NEW: Brighten and color known areas outside FOV by holding '`' (undocumented command)
* NEW: Part/inventory data visualization now includes relative mass mode (toggle via integrity 'w' command/button)
* NEW: 6 more machine types unique to -1/Access (some of them go BOOM)
* NEW: 5 more Trojan hacks
* NEW: Capable drones share terrain scanning data with Cogmind
* NEW: Robots with unspoken dialogue requiring bump-to-talk marked by blinking '?' (or by unique background color if motion trails inactive)
* NEW: Score sheet records total number of actions taken
* NEW: All supporter names registered since Alpha 7 added to in-game list (see Credits menu)
* NEW: All item-attribution names registered since Alpha 7 added to the item collection gallery
* MOD: Main Access Shell behavior changed for non-combat approaches
* MOD: Decomposers no longer break down matter, work slower in general, and are confined to smaller areas
* MOD: Derelict workers and recyclers destroyed in caves no longer have self-destruct mechanism on salvageable parts
* MOD: Derelict recyclers no longer collect matter or data logs
* MOD: Fire traps cause a greater heat surge in victim
* MOD: Relative encounter/prefab weights tweaked across all maps
* MOD: -1/Access has fewer empty rooms
* MOD: Operators no longer stationed at terminals that can be hacked to open a door
* MOD: Increased effect of Spotters (e.g. in areas like Recycling)
* MOD: Fabricated robots no longer leave salvageable parts (but still drop matter salvage)
* MOD: Derelict component schematics no longer accessible at 0b10 terminals via manual hacks
* MOD: Hackable (orange) blast doors immune to critical hit instant destruction effect
* MOD: Broadcast Trojan message uses different color and formatting
* MOD: Scan window unspoken dialogue indicator uses '?' rather than '!' (further differentiated from hostile spotted indicator)
* MOD: Context help for critical strike makes explicit mention of effect against props
* MOD: Dialogue triggered by robot entering view happens immediately regardless of player speed
* MOD: Gallery collection percent is now animated
* MOD: Optimized AI initialization to avoid the short pause during first turns in large maps like Factory
* FIX: Crash on opening data for remaining piece of interactive machine after destroying its interactive piece [Enno, Happylisk]
* FIX: Crash on triggering a fire trap with no occupant at that location (e.g. dodged or remote triggered) [Sherlockkat]
* FIX: One of the Extension exits inaccessible via auto-ascend (required manual key/mouse command) [Shobalk]
* FIX: Extra '0' shown at the bottom of score sheet's turn count list [Sherlockkat]
* FIX: In rare cases the only cave exit could be rendered inaccessible by earth collapsing directly on top of it [Sherlockkat]
* FIX: Experimental Hacking Suites and System Shields weren't classified as prototypes [Decker]
* FIX: Unique manual hacks used on the wrong target still counted against their usage limit [Decker]
* FIX: Recyclers weren't dropping entire inventory contents when destroyed
* FIX: Mechanic repairs to attached parts didn't update the integrity indicator in Cogmind's part list
* FIX: Fire trap heat transfer mechanic was activating for adjacent positions, but not the origin
* FIX: Derelict-installed traps in caves rigged to trigger on the wrong faction (intended to be friendly)
* FIX: Self-destruct Interrupters (new in Alpha 7) were auto-activating and running out of power (so no one's ever seen one :P)
* FIX: Log message output for pre-learned machine locations reversed inteactive/non-interactive designations
* FIX: Weapon info projectile count indicator added for Alpha 7 wasn't displaying

(As usual, if you haven't already, remember to use the form linked in your original download email to provide the name you want to use in game. Attribution/names are added with each major release.)
« Last Edit: May 08, 2017, 03:07:10 AM by Kyzrati »
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