Featured Items
Software Demos News Recommended
Posts in "All News" channel about:


Show posts for all products, not just Hive
Community Announcements - sean.colombo
Long time, no release! :) Things have been fairly stable, so we haven't had to do any emergency releases. If you've been following @bluelinegames on twitter, you might have noticed that we've even been able to start on our next project, Khet 2.0 - the Laser Game!

In the meantime, we've been making regular tweaks to Hive & then this morning we finally routed out a couple of Online errors that were causing certain users to have a whole barrel of trouble when trying to make online games. Tonight, that build went live & should automatically update for you the next time you run Steam.

Here's what's in the release we just pushed to PC, Mac, and Linux:

  • Dropped the number of games needed to get a full Elo Rating down to 15 games (too many people were getting discouraged in the 20's... that's sad!).
  • BUGFIX: Under certain cases, some players would start online games which would be confused about whose turn it was, so the game would basically be locked.
  • BUGFIX: Under other conditions, players could start a game where one player would have a different set of pieces enabled, which lead to crashing.
  • Performance improvement to rendering... on low-end systems that had framerates that were low, this should increase the frame-rate by about 50%! (Geoff is such a baller at this stuff)
  • Made the "Esc" button clickable on the screen to exit the game.
  • Automatically remember the FullScreen setting (made it "sticky") so player doesn't have to go fullscreen manually, every time they play the game (if that's how they prefer it).
  • Capture STDOUT and send it to our logfile... this will make debugging customer issues even easier in the future.
  • At user-request, updated the coupon-code in the Credits to be the 2nd Edition of the "Play Hive Like A Champion" book. Thanks to Randy for creating a discount for the new version also! :)
Jun 5
Community Announcements - sean.colombo
We just pushed a small maintenance update. This build includes the following:

  • Upgraded our MonoGame-SDL2 branch to the latest code (FNA). This should fix a rendering issue that one user was having.
  • Upgraded to the latest version of the Steam SDK. This just fixes an occasional bug that made the Steam avatars too big on Linux sometimes.
  • Fixed the granting of Ladybug achievements. They were sometimes granting even if the Ladybug wasn't the piece that moved.
  • Made the Online Games menu screen not flicker when it updates the list of games.
Community Announcements - sean.colombo
Tonight we released an update (on Windows, Mac, and Linux simultaneously) which add a handful of new, fun features.

== Elo Ratings & Steam Leaderboards ==
First off are "Elo Ratings" - the same rating system used to rate professional Chess players. These Ratings will be used for the Steam Leaderboards.

The very simple overview is that you'll be rated starting at 1200. If you beat someone at a game of Hive online, their rating will go down and yours will go up. If they're rated much higher than you, the amount you gain is higher. So if you beat someone rated 1400, your score goes up more than if you'd only beaten someone rated 1250. Similarly, if you lose to someone with a very low score, your score would drop more than if you lost to someone with a very high score.

One thing to be aware of is that for this system to work, everyone starts out with a "Provisional" rating until they've played 30 games. If you see someone with a rating with "P" at the end (eg: "1200P") that means that they're still starting out. If you're fully rated, playing against a newbie will NOT affect your score. This makes it easy for you to play new people without worrying that they are really good & their artificially-low score could affect you.

Until you have played 30 rated games, your Elo Rating will NOT be submitted to the Steam Leaderboard since it's not considered to be a highly scientific rating until you've played a decent number of games.

== Private Lobbies ==
If you want to play an online game with a specific friend, now you can create a Private Lobby. If you create a game with a Private Lobby, then your game won't be listed in the list of games in the Online Main Menu. This way, you don't have to worry about strangers joining the game and having to explain to them that you're waiting for someone else.

Since Private Lobbies aren't listed, to get your friend into the game you must use the "Invite Friend" button to invite them in.

== Bugfix ==
We were also made aware of a bug that placing certain pieces after a certain string of events could cause the game to crash. We believe we have this fixed, and this fix is why we rushed this build out without better documentation about the new Elo Ratings ^_^ ...don't tell anyone. But if you saw that bug before, we're sorry: you shouldn't be seeing it again. If you ever see this or any other bugs, please let us know! :)

Alrighty... so get out there and play some online games! Since all players have to play 30 rated games to make it on the Leaderboard, it's going to be a race for the top spots! :D
Community Announcements - sean.colombo
Today, both the Mac and Linux versions of Hive are released! This means that you can play from any major OS against your friends on any major OS!

If you're not familiar w/the process: you buy the game once and it works on all of the platforms... they're not really different "products".

Please spread the word to any of your friends who run OSX or Linux, and we can continue to build up the online community!

PS: To celebrate the release, the game will be 20% off for the next week! For technical reasons the two-pack can't start its discount until tomorrow, but it looks like all of the other discounts are live right now!
Community Announcements - sean.colombo
Today is awesome.

First off... the Mosquito DLC is now released, so now you can get every expansion for Hive on Steam that exists for the table top version! There are also packages that allow players to buy the entire set at once for a discount from the full price.

Mosquito expansion on Steam

Secondly... we know it was a long wait for more than a month to get the expansions out, and we really appreciate everyone sticking with us during that time. To show our appreciation, we gave a "gift copy" of Hive to everyone who bought a copy of Hive before yesterday!

Please note that this apparently takes a while for the gift-copies to roll out. They should automatically show up in your Inventory at some point. We've had many reports of people who have the gift-copies already, as well as many reports of users who haven't gotten them yet. Hang in there! If you still don't have it in a few days, please let us know so we can investigate.

Third and finally... there are now Steam Cards and emoticons! Start collecting, crafting, and emoting! I can't wait to get my hands on the :meeple: emoticon!
Community Announcements - sean.colombo
The Ladybug DLC is now available for Hive! If you have the Ladybug, you can host a game with the Ladybug in it even if your guest hasn't unlocked the Ladybug yet.

The Ladybug's full price is $2.99 but will be on a launch discount at $1.97 for the first week!

Ladybug expansion on Steam

We want to be very transparent with our pricing plans, so check out this pricing post for exact details on how we expect everything to be priced. In short: if you buy the expansions as they come out, you will get almost the exact same discount as if you bought all three expansions bundled with the game.

If you have the table top version of the game, you also may want to consider buying the Ladybug expansion pieces (UK) for that as well :)

Enjoy the Ladybug! Please let us know if you find any issues with it.

We'll keep working on the Mosquito and hope to have it out at the end of this month or in the first half of May. :)
Product Release - Valve
Hive - The Ladybug, all new content for Hive is Now Available on Steam and is 34% off!*

Hive - The Ladybug is an expansion piece for the core Hive game.

The Ladybug adds some new tactics to traditional Hive. The Ladybug works as kind of a cross between a Spider and a Beetle. They are able to climb up on top of the hive for 2 spaces before they must ascend back down to the main level. This allows you to move quickly and easily across the hive in ways your previously couldn't to allow you to sneak up on your opponent!

You can use the Ladybug in all of the game modes available in the core Hive game, including online, local, and games against the computer. You can also earn new achievements that can only be granted using the Ladybug!

*Offer ends April 21 at 10AM Pacific Time
Community Announcements - sean.colombo
Today we released a larger update with a ton of improvements inspired by community requests!

Visual Upgrades - photorealism tweaks

  • Tile height was increased to match the dimensions of the tiles from the table-top version of Hive (thanks for the suggestion, Eucalyx!).
  • The gray, stationary background has been replaced with a table-top surface which the pieces actually sit on (thanks to Bob5453 and FeltHλt for the suggestions!).
  • The camera projection was changed from orthographic to perspective which is more similar to how your actual eyes/brain work (things in the foreground are bigger, things in the background are smaller).
  • To prevent you from knowing whether the table is truly flat or round, there is a fog obscuring the end of the world.
  • Now that the pieces are resting on a surface, they have shadows.

AI Updates

  • The AI now understands that it's better to measure a Pillbug's value based on whether it is covered (can use its special move) instead of whether it is pinned.
  • If the AI could block you from moving, it got so excited that it couldn't differentiate between any of the moves that kept you blocked, so it moved almost randomly (that's annoying!) instead of going for the win. Now it can still think even when it's excited.
  • The AI didn't value putting its beetle on top of the Hive, as much as it should have. It values it a little more now (may have to tweak the weight again in the future).
  • Added a Randomness Quotient setting to introduce the possibility of randomness to all AI moves. The lower levels of AI have higher randomness. This change increases replay-value, and decreases predictability.
  • Made the second-move in the opening able to place more pieces (not just the queen) and made it randomly choose between all possible placements instead of just placing off-center.
  • Made the third-move in the opening, use a far-greater randomness than the subsequent moves. This ensures a wider range of openings, causing the games to diverge a bit more.

We are making a couple of blog-posts about adding randomness to AI. We posted the first part last night:

Other Updates

  • Technical bugfix: the 2D pieces weren't initially rotated correctly (until a queen was placed) the images were facing the point of the tile, not a flat side. That wasn't the same as the actual table-top pieces, so we fixed that.
  • The HUD decreased in size to give a bit more breathing-room to the main game.
  • Bugfix: if the same two players played sequential games with the same colors and the same player going first twice in a row, then the HUD wouldn't highly on the first move to show whose turn it was. The gameplay still worked but it was probably confusing for anyone who ran into that.

Although we've had a few new releases since the launch of the game almost 3 weeks ago, it's super-exciting to have a big update out with new features! Please let us know what you think! :D
Community Announcements - sean.colombo
We just pushed a build which resolved a bug with Rematches online. Sometimes when rematching, the two sides would get different GameSettings which caused a number of issues (one would think Pillbug was enabled, other wouldn't... the two sides wouldn't agree whose turn it was, etc.). Big thanks to nkorppi for helping us debug the issue!

Our plan is to not do any pushes for the rest of the week unless there are bugs to be fixed. We have a planned update coming next week which should be pretty cool. It has some AI improvements and a few visual improvements which we think you'll like. Stay tuned!
Community Announcements - sean.colombo
We've made a few updates since the launch, for various things (bug fixes, the creation of the DRM-Free mode, etc.) and tonight we pushed another maintenance update.

Since there was so much going on, most of the updates to our fast releases post-launch were just described in the forum posts that they were related to. We'll try to get back to more regular Announcements for updates now.

Tonight's Updates:

  • Hide the "Global Stats" when running in DRM Free mode since the Global Stats (eg: on Steam) aren't available without Steam, so it was weird to just see a bunch of 0's.
  • Fixed a bug that occurred if you tried to open Stats with Steam running but with no internet connection.
  • Fixed a logic error reported by Mienio: if an Ant was inside of a ring and had an empty spot next to it outside of the ring but blocked by a gate, then the Ant incorrectly thought it could move to that empty space.
  • Made our PersistentKeyValueStore resilient to Locale changes. The PersistentKeyValueStore is the part of our code that makes your configuration stick between sessions so you don't have to keep changing the camera angle or resetting your favorite settings every time you run the game. The fix is primarily in case you changed your computer from a locale setting that says you were in eg: most anywhere in Europe, to saying you were in America after you'd already run the game. The problem occurred because locales often handle number formats differently. For example the number "two and a half" is "2.5" in some locales and "2,5" in others.
  • Pillbug is valued higher by the AI now. This probably isn't noticible (see below for more on Pillbug AI).

Next Up!

We have some additional releases planned in the coming weeks. Two are visual updates, another is related to the Online main menu, and we also plan to release some AI improvements especially related to the Pillbug. The AI doesn't understand the Pillbug nearly as well as it should, yet.

Once we're done with these maintenance updates, we will hopefully be able to release the Ladybug soon after. We already have a lot of the groundwork laid for that, but we've put it on the shelf briefly to address some issues (such as bugs and the Pillbug AI) that we feel are more urgent to the existing release.

Sep   Aug   Jul   Jun   May   Apr  
Mar   Feb   Jan  
Archives By Year
2014   2013   2012   2011   2010  
2009   2008   2007   2006   2005  
2004   2003   2002