Missiles/8.6 Away!

by Kyzrati on 20130203 , under

The people have spoken! Truthfully, not a whole lot of them, but the handful of voices heard make it fairly obvious that overall you guys would prefer to avoid too many intentional roadblocks (a.k.a. feature creep) on the way to 1.0. Probably a smart move.

So as discussed in the previous post, I've postponed parkour and plowed through a series of quick features while clearing up the near-term to-do list in preparation for the Next Big Thing.

While these new features come with R8.6, uploaded today, some of them consist of engine support for future content and mods, not something you'll immediately have access to in the game. Nonetheless, I'll mention them here so that you know what's going on, and so I have an excuse to put up some related screenshots :)

Hand-held light-emitting items will now illuminate the nearby environment (I'm talking mechanics here, not some new visual style). This means little to X-COM right now since their own unit-based light is equivalent to that given off by an electro-flare, but it could have some interesting implications for mods where you might not have so much light available and have to carry a source of light (which may not last forever, like a lit torch). Varying amounts of light may also be emitted by armor itself.

Pathfinding has been slightly modified. I believe most players will prefer the more predictable direct route when allowing the game to take you to a chosen destination (as in X-COM), even though that route generally costs a tad more TU due to extra turning costs. I could add an option to disallow this behavior, but if you're in a tight situation where a few TU will really matter, you can always move in shorter sprints (which you should probably be doing, anyway) or use the keyboard. Do note that if the direct path (meaning a straight line towards the destination) is blocked, the normal pathfinding calculations will take over and will always take the cheapest path, which is not straight.

Burst fire weapons now support numbers of projectiles other than three, so some weapon could theoretically go full auto on a target with six shots, or more. For even scarier stopping power, burst mode supports a "salvo" setting that fires *all* those projectiles at once. Of course, my first inclination was to make a launcher that fires 12 large rockets simultaneously. Just a test, mind you ;p
X-COM sends primitive village back to the stone age?
When first testing I had all the rockets moving at insane speeds, and blew a path of destruction right through the Exodus city map (it looked even cooler when animated):
Hope there aren't any civilians in those buildings...

The aftermath. This is what 12 rockets can do for YOU!

Finally got around to adding ammo counters to the inventory window. This was postponed a looooong time ago when the original inventory window didn't have much room because it used the full-width font. Now you can actually identify at a glance what weapons are loaded with how much ammo, and the amount remaining in each clip in your inventory without having to remember / check all these values manually. Always one step ahead of the aliens, we are! (I also went ahead and made the HUD prioritize the display of remaining ammo, even though we'll be getting a new HUD in a few versions.)

  • Rookie's Tale has been updated with a few fixes and a new sword (Vampiric Blade).
  • 10101 has again updated the Aggression mod, this time with a huge garrison. Woe to the orc raiding party that runs into that thing (10% chance; you'll know at the beginning there's one nearby because you'll hear the commander's call to arms at the end of your first turn--keep retrying with F10 until you get it if you've played before and are just interested in the garrison).

Around the corner: A bit of optimization, and sound++.
8 comments more...


  • Kyzrati

    And I showed great restraint by not loading 12 mininukes instead... Forget half the city--let's take out half the planet in one shot! Alien base somewhere in the eastern hemisphere? *BOOM* Gone.

  • J. Korenik

    Don't be fooled by lack of comments. There are many people that just like to watch from the shadows. I dare say I have high hopes for this game, and its shaping up to not only be as good as the original, but may end up being superior to it.

    When finished, it certainly will be the best UFO style game out there.

  • Kyzrati

    Thanks, I know from the site logs that there are a good many people who follow, and only a small subset of that will tend to be vocal, so I take the "vote" comments as a representative sample significant so long as there is a statistical trend. There was, so onward to 1.0! (Which is still really far away in an I-wish-I-had-time-to-code-all-day-and-get-there-some-time-this-year kinda way :)

  • sylverone

    And, of course, some of us show up after the party. ;) For now, if someone wants jumping, they can use something like the shadow-walk in A Rookie's Tale. I'm not sure if it was intentional, but you can choose spaces in the air with that. I think it's awesome, personally.

  • sylverone

    By the way, will we eventually get messages when we attack walls and objects? Currently you can't tell whether you're making a dent. It would be cool to know you did damage and also get an idea of the condition of what you are attacking.

  • Kyzrati

    I could have waited longer for more opinions, but the trend was clear and we have decisions (and progress!) to make.

    Interesting idea about using Shadow Sprint for jumping. It can be used to jump gaps, sure, though I apparently made a mistake in the settings by allowing it to target the air... (Congratulations, you found a bug ;p) I'm going to remove that in the next update, so enjoy it while it lasts--that's too cheap!

    In X-COM, you can't actually do partial damage to terrain; you either destroy it, or you don't. I do see a need for messages, however, especially with the addition of extended melee combat and the increased likelihood that you'll try to bash something down physically. It'll help to know immediately whether it's a hopeless cause or not. I'll add that to the list.

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