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In my recent post, I mentioned that we’d soon be uploading a trailer highlighting some of the biggest changes we’ve made to Starbound since the last stable build. Without further rambling, here it is!
As Finn noted yesterday on Twitter, we’re trying to push these updates to the unstable branch next week and, depending on how that goes, pushing them to the stable branch in January.
Katzeus at Starbound has done an awesome job summarizing most of the changes here.
Thanks again for your continued support and patience. :) Enjoy the trailer!
What a week it’s been. I found myself tasked with examining and improving overall game balance. For a game packed with randomized elements that has undergone some pretty significant changes in the combat system, this proved a bit of a long-winded process that involved a lot of convoluted spreadsheets. These changes involved addressing the way damage from weapons and monsters scales up across the tiers, along with health scaling on enemies. It seems to be shaping up pretty nicely so far.
One of the biggest changes to hit has been the implementation of a new energy system. The team has been aware for a good while that the guns were in need of attention. The biggest problem was that players didn’t really have a lot of options beyond burning through all their energy while shooting, and then would be left waiting an obnoxiously long time before their bar refilled enough to be of any use. With balance being a key focus at this time, it seemed a good opportunity to address it.
The biggest change is how your bar regenerates energy. Rather than a slow and constant regeneration like the one you’ve likely experienced in our stable build, the regeneration will now only kick in if you haven’t used your energy for a few seconds. To compensate, the regeneration is much faster than it was before, restoring your full energy in just a few seconds. No matter how big your energy pool gets, it will take precisely the same length of time to refill, effectively giving you both more shots and even more energy per second.
This new system doesn’t come without risks however. If you use your energy without allowing it to time to refill, completely emptying it, your bar will lock during its regeneration cycle, restricting you from using energy in any way shape or form until it has completely refilled. This means you will not be able to fire your guns, nor use energy-based techs.
The general consensus among the team so far is that new system feels much better than the old one. It opens up opportunities for strategic play and encourages players to be mindful of their reserves. In the wake of this change, my next task is to rebalance energy levels across armors. That’ll be fun!
In any case, that’s it from me. Have a nice weekend folks!
Recently, we made a change to how the nightly manages its current working directory (to make managing servers more sane, to make launching the command line utilities less mysterious, and generally have less spooky action at a distance, and to potentially support multiple profiles in the future), but unfortunately, that change broke the launcher. I’ve worked for a few hours and found that there seems to be no good answer to our problems without reverting the changes we made, and we can’t really justify reverting those changes.
As mentioned, the root issue is now that we’ve made changes the launcher has the wrong working directory. In order to fix that, I had to move the launcher to the proper location (or do a change to the working directory for the starbound executable, which is what the change was originally intended to prevent.)
Eventually, we decided to move the launcher to the same directory as the executable, but now it’s screwing up because Steam wants it to be in the same location as the current stable.
We can’t change launch paths by branch, it’s set per depot, not per build. We’re sending in a support request to Valve on the matter. It might be as simple as “just add another launch option that’s valid on the other builds, but invalid on the stable, and it will try them all.” And I’m hoping it’s that simple. But it’s not something that I want to test out right now without knowing for certain.
So what does this mean to you?
The nightly on Windows and OSX (OSX was broken as well by the same change, even though it doesn’t use the launcher), you will need to launch the executable directly, rather than through Steam, until further notice.
Executable launching instruction can be found using this elegant and finely crafted link.
Evening! So in preparation for the next stable update, we’ve been arranging things so that quests and missions all work together as part of a functioning progression. For my part, I’ve been rebalancing the several missions in the game so that they are as challenging as they need to be for when you reach them.
What is the context of this dismal cavern? You’ll have to find out for yourself!
It’s all coming together! If you haven’t already seen, we’re gathering lots of quickfire feedback for the current nightly build to see how people are finding it. Hit us up if you’d like to chip in!
“Starbound is one of the most impressive never-ending games I've ever played.”
9 – Polygon
“Starbound's delivering on its core promises even in its early access incarnation.”
“This might be a bare-bones version of the game to come, but boy, check out those bones. The game's minutiae will be mapped out across various wikis for years to come, and many mechanics will be added and refined, but even now, Starbound is an enticing journey of discovery that reminds you just how exciting it can be to stare at a sky full of stars.”
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