Shield now have HP bars, so now it is much more convenient
And engineering bays now have visible radius of influence around it
Also we have a plan for significant changes and improvements in construction system. It will require to made some changes in the core systems, so it may take a bit more time than usual, or not, will see. But result should be very good!
Camera movement now a bit smoother
Added visible radius circle around your engineering bay which is visible when you selected it or when opened build menu
Radius circle of engineering bay and shipyard now looks a bit different (as a dotted line)
Shields now have HP bars which are visible when damaged
Unity engine updated to version 5.6.3
All localization files updated
Asteroids and enemy ship no longer can be spawned inside obstacles
Camera movement speed no longer depends on FPS, time scale, or pause
Camera no longer shaking during low FPS (which sometimes caused a crash with error)
Preview of modules no longer can block projectiles and lasers
Your engineering bay no longer can deconstruct asteroids, debris, rockets and modules which belongs to another faction, and also modules which are too far away
Fixed an error when shipyard range remains visible after repairing
Since in version 0.8 we implemented first version of aerodynamic mode, many people became very confused about this. Here is a few main complaints:
1. Developers decided to make the game casual. 2. Developers now have two games, so development time now will 2 times slower 3. Developers decided to focus on aerodynamic mode instead of orbital mode, so "say bye to realism", orbital mode is abandoned, "I bought the game for orbital mode", "fraud" etc. Sometimes it is a reason for negative reviews.
So we should say ALL OF THESE STATEMENTS IS ABSOLUTELY INCORRECT
Lets explain it in more details. First of all, we understand why you are confused. Because you never saw such revolutionary and unique approach anywhere.
The only place where you saw approach which MAY SEEMS SIMILAR (But NOT the same), it is many games from AAA developers, which are often makes its games more and more casual, by deleting features, in order to make development cheaper and obtain more sales.
But this is not the same what we are doing. It can be similar by the first glance, but it is illusion. We will never use such approach. For us, development of casual games is inacceptable. We are like to develop complex and hardcore games with deep mechanics. Development of casual games absolutely is not interested for us.
What we are doing, it is revolutionary and unique approach for development. Currently it will be hard to explain, since this approach will show its full power only after some time of development, but in a nutshell: "Single flexible core - various game rules".
Basically, we want to ask a simple question. Are we deleted orbital mode from the game? The answer is no. And we don’t plan to do it. So why you are thinking that we are abandoned orbital mode and going to create a casual game?
You may think that since we are focused on aerodynamic mode, the orbital mode now will be developed extremely slowly. But it is an another illusion.
Actually, since aerodynamic mode was implemented, development of orbital mode now significantly faster than before!
We created a simplified graph in order to show what we mean. Look:
Hard to believe? But this is true.
It first glance you may think "If developers now have 2 tasks instead of one, it means that each task now have only 50% development speed instead of 100%"
But this statement is not relevant if we are talking about development using our new approach.
There is several factors which makes it possible.
First, as we told above, a "single flexible core". You see, implementation of aerodynamic mode took very little efforts. Approximately 5% from the all development time, or even lower. All what we need to do it is just enable friction and change world generator a bit. That's it.
With the few small steps, we created basically another game which provides even more gameplay experience
Think about it, if we can spend only a 5% of development time and as result, achieve almost 100% of new gameplay experience, it will be very unwise to not do it.
Also there is another example: Some other game developers may create another game based on their previous game with very few changes, but the game will be sold on full price tag as a different game.
Instead of such approach, we just added "another game" for free (even not a FREE DLC), just a regular update which adds more content into the base game.
If you don't like aerodynamic mode - just ignore it. The speed of development of orbital mode is the same as before (and even faster) so nothing to worry about. But actually we recommend to check both modes, because each mode have its advantages and interesting gameplay aspects.
You may say "But you already developing aerodynamic mode for a two months, and orbital mode is abandoned" - and this statement will be incorrect
In the last few updates only a few small changes related specific to aerodynamic mode. Majority of changes it is huge improvements of core mechanics, optimization and bug fixes which is related to both modes.
Even if we will have 10 various game modes, these changes will be automatically applied to all game modes at once. "Single flexible core", remember?
But how it is possible that development of orbital mode now even faster than before?
It is because orbital world where everything in constant motion, it is very inconvenient environment for development.
It is hard to explain such specific technical aspects of game development, but in a nutshell "If entire world of the game is moving - it is very bad".
Actually Celestial Command it is basically the only game where entire world of the game is moving. It is completely violates standards of game development, what generates a lot of technical problems (most of them more or less solved during long and complex development), but still, testing of features and fixing of bugs could be very hard in orbital mode.
So we decided to implement aerodynamic mode and use it as a platforms for tests and fixes! And since there is single core, such fixed applied to both modes.
The result turned out extremely good! During a few months we made more improvements than during the year. And we continue to add even more fixes with each update, which are now quite often.
So, as you can see, everything is much more complex that it seems at first glance. We even didn't described all benefits from such approach, but the text already turned out too big. Anyway, later you will notice how much quality of the game was improved since version 0.8.
Also we noticed that ion engines still have old 2D visual effect and not very suitable audio effect, so now it is updated!
Also, energy shield no longer looks so thin, especially on large ships.
Ship design created by user Lemodile.
New visual and audio effect for ion engines
Now energy shield have bigger vertical size, so it no longer looks so thin
Improved solution of "shaking stations", so stations in orbital mode no longer teleports at short distance each 1-2 minute like in previous update. Now station will teleport back to stable orbit, only if station will be too close to atmosphere or to border of sphere of influence of planet.
Now ships with active shield will be loaded correctly (attached parts no longer will collide with own shield)
Power monitor now displays correct income and outcome (actually not, it still shows incorrect values for more than 1 power storage, it will be fixed later)
A couple of days ago we released a major update 0.81 unfortunately the update did not bring much pleasure due to the huge number of critical bugs that have accumulated in the game.
So this update target mostly on important bugfixes. Unfortunately the game collected a lot of bugs, many of them very critical for gameplay.
It's our mistake that the game collected so many bugs. Usually we are trying to keep our code clean and reliable. Now it is good time to fix all critical bugs before we will continue to improve and add new features.
List of fixes may be not too big, but most of bugs in the list turned out quite complex and required a loot of efforts to figure out a reason and solve it properly.
Also we are trying to add some improvements in each update, because update which contains only from bugfixes it is too boring : )
Also we want to remind that you may discuss an update and communicate with us about everything in our Discord chat. link
Added option to change air density for aerodynamic mode
Loading a bit optimized
Fixed a situation when you accepted a combat mission and it was completed instantly (and also ally carrier was spawned)
Fixed an impossibility to dock with the station after game was loaded
Fixed an impossibility to control own ship after game was loaded
Fixed a bug when you encounters ally or own ships instead of pirates which happens after game was loaded
Now can drag and drop resources from docked neutral storages which allows you to loot enemy wrecks for resources using docking port
Flying outside of asteroids belt no longer cause a console error
Respawn now properly works after game was loaded
Probably fixed (it means that we didn't managed to recreate these bugs, but some fixes related to the core elements which may affect many various bugs)
Fixed an impossibility to connect resource connector
Fixed an impossibility to buy or sell modules
A situation when you can get credits for sold module but module will not be deleted
We are ready to introduce you another big and important update. After 0.8 was released, we thought to start to release updates more often, but when we started working on 0.81, turned out that several big improvements should be implemented in combination, so it took more time than usual.
Despite the fact that the game in development more than 2 years, we made some mistakes in planning, as result, the game still lacks some basic and important features. So we are going to add some of them in this update.
Limited range of detection
One of the most significant changes, it is radars. From now, you can't see objects which are located outside of range of the radar (except big static asteroids and planets). But others ships, small asteroids and debris is not visible until you will close to them. Also, now all command modules have built-in radar which does not require energy and always provides some limited visibility.
This is very important feature which should be implemented long time ago.
People often said about size of the world in Celestial Command, and always asked for interstellar travels in order to make the world bigger. But actually, interstellar travels is not necessary in order to make world bigger. Its small size it is just an illusion which caused by several factors:
1. You can see all the map at once. You can zoom-in to any point and observer any asteroids. This is fully remove an effect of "travel in unknown". 2. Your ship have unlimited maximum speed and range. This problem related to orbital mode and this is one of reasons why we decided to focus on the aerodynamic mode for now. In orbital mode, the ship have very low fuel consumption rate, as result you can fly anywhere in the star system and very fast, and since any point can be reachable without a problem, this is also makes the world "small".
But now, in aerodynamic mode, in order to travel from one side of the system to another, you need significant amount if time and fuel. With combination of limited view range, this significantly changes how you feel size of the world.
Actually, size of the world is quite big. Imagine any open-world game where size of the map is approximately 12x12 kilometers. This is quite lot of space!
However, currently in the game not too much interesting things which you may found during traveling in space, but now it is possible to travel in space without knowledge of what waiting in front of your ship. This adds a lot of opportunity for adding new exploration content, and one we will add it, it will be more interesting to explore the space.
Another interesting moment, that it is actually a "radar". In many similar 2D space games, "limited view range" implemented using "maximum zoom-out range" so you just can't observe objects beyond side of the screen. We are not really like such approach, because we like a possibility of unlimited zoom-out and we don't want to remove it, so radar is much more suitable for this task. Plus it works on several ships at once and provides possibility for RTS elements. Basically it is similar to classic "Fog of War" from many RTS games.
Improved encounters with pirates
The second very important feature which should be implemented long time ago, it is a system which will spawn an NPC while you are moving through the world. This is a basic and crucial elements of many open world games. We made some mistakes with planning and this features was not implemented properly during long time, so now we are going to solve that.
Despite the fact that we added spawn of pirates some time age, they just spawned near your ship using a timer. This is defiantly not correct behavior and it is just boring.
But now, you will encounter an enemies during your movement through the world. They will be spawned somewhere outside of range of your radar, but in relatively short distance, so you will be able to encounter them. If not, they will be removed after some time of inactivity for optimization purposes.
This is how NPC spawn implements in many other open world games, and now it properly implemented here! Besides that, in various places you be able to encounter various enemies. This is described below.
And another very important feature - locations.
It is not just a feature, it is more like a concept. Locations it is a key element of any open world game. It is some specific area which have its particular properties and always located in the same place, so it can be defined, remembered and you should be able to return back to known location. This is also quite important for better "size of the world" which was described above.
Lack of "locations" was one of the biggest problem of orbital mode (locations is very complex in orbital mode, because it should be static, but in orbital mode everything is constant motion. Of course we can implement moving locations, like planets, but points in space, but it is very unusual concept and it could be very hard to understand, especially for new users), and this is another important reason why we decided to focus on aerodynamic mode for now. But later we will try to implement such concept for orbital mode.
So now, the world is divided by sectors and each of sectors may have its properties. So far there is not too much properties, and sectors exist only in big asteroids belt, however this systems allows to create more sectors anywhere on the map with its unique parameters.
Currently, each sectors have its owner and complexity level, and one space station somewhere inside. This is will be described below.
Also we started to work on some kind of game goals, which is also very important aspect of every game.
So now, space stations in sectors can be captures. After that, sector became captureв and its space station can provide its services. Besides that, in far located sectors you will encounter more stronger enemies.
System still quite raw, but now we have a platform which can be improved.
As you can see, with addition of aerodynamic mode, the progress goings much faster Version 0.8 was one of the most important stage in the development, and version 0.81 it is basically improvements for version 0.8.
Now we have a pretty good plan which will allows to achieve stable and addictive gameplay.
Also, many people are unhappy with the fact that we are added aerodynamic mode, because "we are turned into casual game and sacrificed a realism in order to achieve more sales" as many others developers often do (especially in modern AAA games). But we can assure you that it is not correct. We don't like a casual games, and our projects always will be deep, hardcore and realistic.
Orbital mechanics it is just not the only thing which makes the game realistic and hardcore. There is also many other aspects in the game, which makes it hardcore even in aerodynamic mode, such as limited ammo, limited resources, big damage from collisions, importance of mass, moment of inertia, engines thrust, fuel etc. (those aspects usually simplified in similar others space games)
Also make note, that despite the fact that most changes related to aerodynamic mode, make note, that since both modes have single core, all core features and improvement of optimization automatically available in both modes (radar for example).
Also we want to remind that you may discuss an update and communicate with us about everything in our Discord chat. link
Added sectors with capturable stations inside and different complexity of pirates
Added system which allows to capture enemy stations
Added system for limited view range (inside radar range)
Balance: Radar radius in aerodynamic mode is 10 times smaller than in orbital mode
Improved algorithm of planets placement for aerodynamic mode, now gas giants can be found only outside of asteroid belt, gas giant have more and bigger moons and more variations of moons while other planets have smaller and less diverse moons.
Added panels with additional information about game modes and multiplayer
Now it is not necessary to dock with shipyard in order to buy, sell or repair a module, you just should be in range of shipyard (this allows to build a new docking port if your docking ports was lost and also provides more comfortable construction since you can move your docking port and no longer forced to be docked with station)
Now engineering bay can construct modules everywhere inside its radius of influence (not only on docked ships) It makes construction process much easier and enjoyable. Especially if you want to build new ship. You can start it anywhere from any module (not only from docking port as before)
Removed possibility to build new docking port next to existed docking ports (it is no longer necessary because of feature explained above, now you can build docking port everywhere in open space and dock to it after construction)
Usability: Now camera view can be controlled during pause and now its movement speed completely independent from speed of time
Usability: Now right after you spawned your first ship, camera will be set close to the ship by default (without smooth transition) It is looks more comfortable
Added option to change collision damage or completely disable it (while it disabled, physics could be more interesting in some cases)
GUI: Main menu a bit redesigned
GUI: Improved GUI of "Create new world" window. Added fold button which hides advances settings. Changed start button and back button, added new check mark.
Aerodynamic game mode set by default
Added option for 100% black background
90% Black background color now is set by default and now it is a bit lighter
AI: Now enemies will stop chase your ship if it is too far away
Now all command modules have basic built-in radar which does not requires energy. Large command module have a bit more powerful radar.
Visual effects: Laser impact effect now lit nearby objects and looks more correctly, especially when you mining dark side of asteroids
Visual effects: Particles of laser impact effect and asteroid mining effect now simulated in world space instead of local space it means that particles will not follow origin of particle emitter, this makes particles looks much better, especially if laser ray moved from one point to another (works only in aerodynamic mode, impossible to implement in orbital mode)
Visual effects: Docking lights now bigger and directed in opposite direction
Balance: Shield regeneration rate reduced from 10 to 2 per second
Optimization: Light indicator of docking ports fixed and optimized
Optimization: Small optimization for GUI of selected and hovered objects
Stations no longer created inside an asteroid.
Static asteroids no longer displayed with yellow dot on radar (only small asteroids)
Attempt to change speed of time during pause now will properly disable a pause and hide its text label
Animation of moving dots of resource connections now properly displayed during pause
Fixed "NaN" value which appear in "total power flow" during pause
Asteroids amount values now works in aerodynamic mode
Stations no longer will follow a player sometimes (as enemy ships do)
Moons no longer spawned inside its planet and each other
Planets now have proper amount of moons
Damaged modules now will be sold with proper (reduced) price
Planets no longer spawned inside each other and now always spawned on some distance
Camera view no longer jumps away right after small lags (especially noticeable during spawn of the enemy ships, which cause 0.5-1 sec lag)
Ship icons no longer have incorrect screen position during first frame right after activation
Now when radar out of power, it will be disabled correctly
Now radar will be correctly disabled when detached from the command module (but still connected to power storage)
Now shield works correctly after game was loaded
Multiplayer: Now "max thrust" parameter of engines is properly synced in multiplayer
Multiplayer: Connected users now have correct positions of planets
Detailed info about saved file temporary disabled (it cause significant freeze when save load window is opened) however info can be visible on click, it is a temporary solution just in order to make save load functionality more accessible (it is more important than additional info about file)
Characteristics of modules is very unbalanced and AI is not too smart. In most cases gameplay can be too easy
Missions does not works in multiplayer
Spawning of enemy ships may cause significant lags, especially for connected users
Effects of engines and weapons visible even outside of range of radar, and also, objects can be selected by cursors even if not visible
NPC Stations became invisible when only one on their modules going out or range of radar
We are happy to introduce, probably the most significant update during entire development of Celestial Command.
Despite the fact that this update have a version 0.8, this is only a first update in sequence. New game mode is made on more than 50%, but still quite raw. For now we decided to release it as soon as possible in order to show you an idea, but during next few updates we will add more and more significant improvements in this mode.
First of all, we want to explain why we decided to implement this new game mode despite the fact than during entire development we advertised a game, as a space game without "unrealistic liquid space".
Orbital mechanics in the current state causes a lot of technical restriction in the game. The concept when absolutely everything in constant movement it is very unusual concept for game development. Both in technical and gameplay terms.
Such gameplay have very complex learning curve, however, many users definitely like other features of Celestial Command, such as ship construction, trading, combat, but don't like how movement works. In orbital space, such terms as "distances" or "locations" is very unobvious and hard to understand.
So we decided to implement a mode which will bring more classic gameplay using existed functionality of the game. So in this game mode, terms of distances, enemy bases and locations is much more familiar for users. Besides that, performance is much better, there is thousand of asteroids and almost hundred of space stations can work with good FPS.
Plus, this game mode allows us to implement some new features which impossible in orbital mode, for example, path finding, it means that now it will be possible to encounter a NPC traders or pirates which will really travel across the world and they will avoid all obstacles (this feature not implemented yet, but will be added in the next few updates)
However, we do not have intentions to make the game "casual". Physics still much more complex than in most classic space games. In this game mode, mass of the ship (and cargo) have very significant impact on acceleration and maximum velocity, and also on fuel consumption. In such game mode it is very interesting to find a proper balance between amount of cargo, size of the ship, amount of fuel, consumption of fuel, desired velocity etc. In the next update we will improve a physics so size of the ship and its shape will affect its maximum velocity.
Important to note, we do not abandon development of orbital mode. Furthermore, many improvements of one game mode, instantly available in another mode. This is possible due flexible architecture which is based on the single core. Aerodynamic mode may even help to test new features and gameplay approaches in stable environment, before it will be added into orbital mode. Which is much more complex to develop new features.
Also we want to remind that you can discuss an update and communicate with us about everything in our Discord chat. link
Added brand new game mode with aerodynamic physics
New game mode: Added exhaust effect for small engines which is good for visualization of velocity and "sense of speed"
New game mode: Added speedometer on the interface which shows velocity of active ship
New game mode: Interface buttons which have sense only in orbital mode (such as orbital grid and stabilize orbit) disabled in aerodynamic mode
New game mode: Added moons around a planets
New game mode: Added new asteroids belt with many huge static asteroids and small dynamic asteroids which can be moved or destroyed.
Square grid now have small grids up to 100 meters which is also important for visualization of velocity
Small asteroids now have bigger size and now they have 8 sectors with resources. Asteroids will be destroyed when all 8 sectors will be depleted. This feature adds more sense to special ships which have several mining lasers around asteroid
Asteroids now have different HP based on its size
Significant optimization of core which improves a performance in several times. Loading of games and ships now much faster.
Localization files updated, thanks for this for community
We are continuing to work on critical bug fixes and important improvements.
In previous update we added important feature, orbital grid, but it was too hidden. Now it is available on the main interface.
We made important change in structure of the ships. Construction of additional command modules on the same ship is no longer possible. Despite the fact that this changes does not bring new features, however It solves a lot of bugs with multiple command modules and also it will help to avoid some game design issues in the future updates where we will add ship specializations and skills for crew members.
Another important feature, you no longer need to guess how much ships you have. New window with list of all ships will allow to easily manage them. Now it is not a problem to switch control between miner and combat ships, for example. Also, renaming of ships now much more comfortable.
Also we made small, but important improvement, added new sound effect for module placement. Previously sound effect was too long and high frequency. Now it is much nicer and makes construction more comfortable.
Now 1 ship may have only 1 command module
You no longer can deconstruct or remove a command module which have a crew inside
Now you can focus view on planets with Alt + Click
GUI: Added interface which shows a list of owned ships
GUI: Added button "Show orbital grid for current planet" on the main interface
GUI: Now when you hold left Alt, you will see a tooltip near a cursor
GUI: Ship rename window a bit redesigned and now it can be dragged with cursor
GUI: Now you can confirm new ship name with Enter button
GUI: Now when you press "rename ship", appeared input field already will contain current ship name and you can enter a new name without clicking on input field
GUI: Now will see a notification if one of your command modules will be destroyed
Audio: Replaced audio effects for module placement and placement error
Audio: Added audio effect when you rotate preview of module
NPC: Two pirate ships has been updated (files sent by user Lemodile)
Audio: Fixed a situation when sometimes audio effects of interface can be played only in left or right speaker
Fixed various bugs with incorrect list of owned ships
Fixed previous / next ship button
Now you can select and click on mounting points properly
Now when you switch control to another ship, the camera will not drift away and also, camera position will be centered to this ship
Now construction drones will properly receive construction order when you going to build a module on docked ship
In this update we added quite simple, but seems like very important feature. Now you can select planet and click appeared button which will display a special radial grid around the planet.
Why it is so important? In space, it is hard to understand velocity of your ship. Velocity is a relative term. When we see a moving car, we can compare its velocity with the ground or other environment. But there is no too much environment in the space, so in most cases there is nothing to compare velocity with. So what to do in such situation?
Grids is the most obvious solution, but what if ships constantly moving on orbit? Grid will be static and ship will continuously move above the grid. This will not help to understood velocity of the ship.
In this case, we have an idea of something which can be called "orbital radial grid". It is just a group of thin radial grids and each of them rotates around planet with the orbital speed. So you may keep your ship in the grid cell if you wish to keep circular orbit. Or move your ship along circle of the grid if you wish to bypass planet around.
Now it should be much easier to understand how to move your ship in this game.
Besides that, we fixed some unpleasant flaws with cargo containers. Full details in change log.
Containers: Now when amount of content in container less than 1, you will see unrounded value on its icon
Containers: Now when amount of content in container more than 100, value on its icon will be rounded to 1, instead of 0.1, so power storages no longer flicker with its fractional number
Containers: Now in interface of containers you can see unrounded amount of its content
Containers: Now various devices which consumes resources from storages, no longer will leave some very small amount of content (such as 0.0000001 fuel or energy), instead of that, container will become completely empty
Trading: Timer "Prices will be updated in" returned back to trading window and now displayed as a text, not as a progress bar
Trading: Added on hover tooltip for columns in trading window
Localization: Added missing localization for categories in options
Fixed the problem when you sometimes can't hide preview of module by right click (and also can't place waypoint for your ship)
You no longer will receive a message "mining laser deactivated due lack of free cargo space" if laser is not belong to you
Fixed broken localization for Russian language
GUI label with mining rate of mining laser now displayed only for own ships (no longer displayed for ships which does not belongs to you)
Now cargo can be moved between containers even if in second contain not enough space for all cargo (only a small part of cargo will be moved)
Fixed "start server" tool tip on some fields in options
Fixed missing "auto save interval" text value
"Contribute in Localization" changed to "Contribute to Localization"