Sorry for the lack of frequent updates on the blog. I’ve been quite busy getting ready for Early Access on Steam, so while I’ve kept the various progress posts on the forums up-to-date, the release notes didn’t made their way to the blog for 0.9.71.
Speaking of Early Access, the regulars among you may remember the tentative date of February 15th. I didn’t quite hit that one, but all the approvals and stuff from Valve have been run and passed, so the remaining tiny little formality that needs to be in order is an offline one. Hopefully within the next few days I’ll hit the Early Access Release button, and it’ll be in the store for those of you who want to join.
Which is yet another opportunity for me to stress that this Early Access is not for those who want to play an “almost-finished” version of the game. The game is still in development, it has bugs, it has missing features and content, stuff will change, etc. This isn’t to speak badly of my game and convince you all to stay away.
I really hope you will join the Early Access, giving feedback, thoughts and/or ideas, or even just to support the project while you wait for the final release. But I want it to happen in good faith, with expectations aligned and no one feeling they’ve been tricked into buying an incomplete product.
Anyways, enough of the boring stuff. There’s a new build heading to Steam for the beta testers, and the patch notes can be found either on Steam or the forums. Here are the non-bugfix contents of 0.9.71+72:
- Declare War action added, and the state of being at war is tracked for all factions explicitly (was previously an aspect of the relations stat).
- Non-aggression Pact added. Violating this will have a negative impact on a faction’s “global” diplomatic reputation, in addition to the usual bilateral diplomatic effects.
- Trade Pact added. This has an initial cost based on traits,research, and faction type. It gives a small constant (not necessarily equal) amount of income to both parties.
- You can no longer send emissaries to independent realms that you are at war with or who are hostile to you.
- Independent realms are now more consistent and immediate in declaring war on you if you attack them.
- A tab has been added to the Diplomacy Window which gives an overview of diplomatic stats and current agreements.
- Diplomatic reputation added as a faction stat. Breaking agreements will reduce it. Keeping agreements will improve it over time.
- Relations with minor factions will begin if an emissary is sent – even if the minor had no previous knowledge of the sending faction.
- The text for minor factions requesting an emissary for an extended stay has been adjusted to recognize if you have already sent the emissary.
- Tooltips added for hex specials and strategic resources.
- Tooltips added for armies.
- Map resource icons have had the shader code reworked to remove some glitches and make more of the icon visible inside the frame.
- Pyramids now have a full-size map icon which is centered in the hex. (the previous icon was small and in the lower part of the hex, potentially overlapping any resource icon).
- Non-player armies now have the owner shown in the tool tip.
- Mana Node icons are now aligned along the top of a hex (to avoid overlapping resource icons). Tool tips have also been added for them.
- There are now tooltips during wizard customization showing research prerequisites
- During wizard customization the trait/research description will change based on mouse over, rather than selection.
- Armies will now prefer retreating to the hex they moved from prior to a battle. If this is not possible, the most accessible and unoccupied hex will be chosen.
- You can now choose to keep playing after winning or losing the game. All victory and loss conditions will be ignored after this.
- There are now tooltips for the top row of buttons.
- In order for army to enter a hex which is fortified or settled, all units must be amphibious or flying, or the general must have the Amphibious Assault skill
- Social structure/government type Simple Feudal has been removed.
- You can now organize characters into parties in order to more easily and intuitively assign several characters to a task. This has been adapted from the dungeon expedition logic, and the dungeon window has changed accordingly. Characters can be grouped into a party via the relevant Party buttons on the right side of the Followers window, or by shift-clicking in the list of characters.
- “Add unit” cheat action added for testing purposes. It adds a random unit to the selected army.
- When the AI has moved an army to respond to an enemy siege, it will now immediately attack the besieging force, instead of sitting around waiting for an assault on the site.
- The AI no longer considers exhausted armies a valid asset for responding to attacks or executing offensive/expansion plans.
- Characters assigned to a party will offer suggestions for tasks or act independently.
- Followers will now make suggestions for assignments if left idle.
- Followers can now be given the freedom to choose their assignments, if the player prefers not to micromanage them.
- Double-clicking in the Character window when in party-selection mode will now add a character to the open party.
- Idle Characters waiting for their party members to recover, meet up, or similar will show as ‘Waiting for party’ and not ‘Idle’.
- A party which is recuperating is now shown as such in the Dungeon Window.