Release Notes

Questions, ideas, and general discussion of Outer Colony.
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Release Notes

Postby Administrator » Tue Dec 13, 2016 1:20 am

Since we're now starting to include testers outside the immediate Voyager Games' team, I'll be sharing release notes in this thread whenever I cut a new beta release. It's easier to post this information to the forums than it is to maintain the growing list of tester email addresses.

It's been 17 releases since the first beta! I can't believe I've cut that many in the last couple of months, but there have been a multitude of feature requests and bug fixes that were addressed as the project gains the polish needed for a public release.

Release notes for version 0.5.17 are as follows:

Resolved ticket #122: Entities that are inside light structures will now be properly conveyed to multiplayer clients on initial login.

Resolved ticket #123: Added an option to disable the rendering of gore.

Resolved ticket #126: Fixed a bug with gender configuration in the embarkation setup interfaces.

Resolved ticket #127: Alphabetized the profession list in the embarkation configuration UI, easing its use.

Resolved ticket #129: Fixed a world load / deserialization bug caused by Dr. Rubicon's Star Wagon.

Resolved ticket #128: Fixed a bug with human sprite types falling out of sync with the server on multiplayer clients.

Resolved ticket #130: Added a tip to the getting started tutorial about using the world map to find a landing site.

Resolved ticket #134: Fixed a bug that could freeze a multiplayer client in the embarkation configuration interfaces.

Resolved ticket #133: Fixed a bug with world elevation data falling out of sync on multiplayer clients.

Resolved ticket #132: Fixed a bug with multiplayer clients not receiving updates when new players join a server and land on a world.

Resolved ticket #131: Fixed a grammatical error Dave identified in our NPCs' writings in media.

Resolved ticket #124: Implemented a feature request from Torvus to be able to go back from the embarkation configuration interfaces to the faction selection interface.

Resolved ticket #135: Now we're imposing more thorough name uniqueness requirements on humans, resulting in fewer humans with identical names.

Resolved ticket #136: Re-introduced family name inheritance.

Resolvedticket #125: Implemented another feature request from Torvus to include a world search function for identifying areas with subterranean resources.

Resolvedticket #137: Fixed a world load bug involving corpse data deserialization.

Resolved ticket #138: Fixed a UI responsiveness issue identified by Imperator when using the room designation tool.

Resolved ticket #139: Improving UI responsiveness throughout various configuration dialogs. Imperator's higher latency on the other side of the US exacerbated data retrieval times, and I streamlined the way many of OC's interfaces talk to the server. This should improve playability for users who are located geographically far away from host systems.

We're moving right along, as more and more issues are being worked out with each release.
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Re: Release Notes

Postby Administrator » Thu Dec 15, 2016 2:57 am

Version 0.5.18 is out. This one mostly addresses bugs found by Torvus and Dave, adds a couple of feature requests from Torvus, and adds the new societal happiness report to help players figure out why their population is happy or unhappy.

Release notes for version 0.5.18 are as follows:

Resolved ticket #140: This was the feature request to add the new societal happiness report interface. This is a big help in addressing the serious deficiencies in your colony that are making everyone unhappy.

Resolved ticket #142: This was a bug identified by Torvus in calculating the costs of personnel configuration in the embarkation interfaces.

Resolved ticket #143: This was another bug that Torvus found that was messing up stat randomization in the embarkation interfaces.

Resolved ticket #141: Torvus was on a roll identifying defects in these configuration interfaces, and this fixes a bug with hair and eye color customization.

Resolved ticket #144: This one was a pretty significant defect that Torvus identified with the customization of certain types of personnel traits in the expedition setup interfaces. In some ways, your configuration purchases weren't being reflected in the humans that actually landed on world. This is now squared away, and all personnel configuration options should be working properly.

Resolved ticket #145: A freakin' brilliant feature request from Torvus to show the drop zone footprint when you're selecting a location for initial landing on the world. I love this one. Awesome!

Resolved ticket #146: This one was also identified by Torvus, and we worked out the specifics of this in testing last night. This fix resolves an issue with item placement when one of your colonists scampers under the item placement tool as you're using it.
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Re: Release Notes

Postby Administrator » Mon Dec 19, 2016 1:16 am

I cut the release for version 0.5.21 tonight, and everyone's installations should auto-update, as always.

Versions 0.5.19 was a miniscule release to fix an issue before testing with Torvus, and version 0.5.20 was a test release to fix a bug that Dave discovered in the installer itself. I'm rolling their release notes into 0.5.21's notes here, for simplicity.

Resolved ticket #149: Resolved a bug that prevented loading worlds where NPCs were pursuing NPCInAreaCondition states. This was a deserialization order issue.

Resolved ticket #148: This was a feature request to report the names of criminals to apprehend in criminal apprehension orders in multiplayer games.

Resolved ticket #150: This was to fix a world save issue that was preventing world saves when a human died while pursuing a ConsumedMediaState goal. The corpse of the dead human wasn't being serialized properly.

Resolved ticket #154: This was a fix for a UI bug that would show incorrect region highlighting on world displays for large worlds.

Resolved ticket #153: This was another UI bug where world generation text would spill over outside its area onto other parts of the world generation UI.

Resolved ticket #147: This was a bug that Dave found when switching memory modes on a PC with really good hardware. The bug was actually an oversight in Outer Colony's installer, and testing the fix necessitated the test-only release of version 0.5.20.

Resolved ticket #155: Rombosaur Studios has become an official Voyager Games partner! This is now reflected on our website, here: https://voyagergames.com/partners/

Resolved ticket #155: This fixes a bug where memories weren't being properly created for humans that fashioned an exceptional item.

Resolved ticket #152: This resolves an issue where memories weren't being created properly for humans that were arrested and spent time incarcerated. Now, special memories are created both at the time that a criminal is apprehended and continuous memories while they serve time as prisoners.

Resolved ticket #151: This resolves a bug that Torvus found while testing multiplayer. If he logged in first to create a new colony, then I logged in afterwards, his client was never showing my colony leaving stasis. All my colonists were active, moving around the world and doing things, but they were rendered in stasis-blue on his client.
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Re: Release Notes

Postby Administrator » Wed Dec 21, 2016 2:28 am

Version 0.5.22 is out! This is another bug fix release correcting issues identified by myself and other testers over the last couple of days.

Resolved ticket #157: This was a fix for a bug that could occur when setting order priorities in single player instances of Outer Colony.

Resolved ticket #158: Fixed a bug where oil shale was never yielding any materials when it was mined. Now it correctly yields petroleum, a fossil fuel.

Resolved ticket #159: Fixed a bug that would slow the game down when players were scrolling near the edge of a world.

Resolved ticket #160: This was an improvement to the order readout for corpse burial states. If the order couldn't be satisfied because an undertaker couldn't identify an available digging tool, which is needed to dig the grave, this will now be reported correctly.

Resolved ticket #162: I fixed the in-page links on the getting started tutorial's web page. Huge thanks to CzarQwerty for the find!

Resolved ticket #163: Resolved a bug that would cause an undertaker to bury the same corpse repeatedly. This was actually a serious issue with duplicate corpse objects being created during world deserialization, preventing corpse buried states from ever being resolved.

Resolved ticket #164: Resolved a bug that was breaking the application of uniformed / military sprites on newly assigned military personnel. Soldier sprites are now applied correctly.
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Re: Release Notes

Postby Administrator » Thu Dec 22, 2016 9:07 pm

Version 0.5.23 is out! This is another bug fix release, and I normally wouldn't distribute a new build so shortly after 0.5.22, but it addresses some significant playability issues.

Resolved ticket #165: As I was playing my way through another test colony, I realized that there wasn't a mechanism for ending a state of general alarm, other than waiting for the alarm's time to expire. This ticket involved implementing a way to immediately end a state of general alarm and to allow humans to resume their normal routines.

Resolved ticket #166: This was a world save issue relating to physical property sets on robot corpses.

Resolved ticket #167: This was a world load bug that could occur if a human died while pursuing a wait out alarm in shelter goal.

Resolved ticket #168: I logged this ticket about bounty hunters possessing the Quar'thanid bee shaman profession, and consequently wearing bee shaman attire when they arrive on-world. I couldn't reproduce this, and I don't think I logged the bug correctly. Regardless, no bounty hunters from the galaxy at large should belong to the Quar'thanid culture, and none should know the ways of bee shamanism.

Resolved ticket #169: This was a bug that was preventing carcass butchered orders from being satisfied. The butcher would convert the corpse to the right materials at the right work station, but the state would never be satisfied, leaving the worker confused.
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Re: Release Notes

Postby Administrator » Tue Jan 03, 2017 9:51 pm

We're moving right along to release 0.5.24. This release is most notable for the inclusion of Outer Colony's new video tutorial system, but it also addressed a variety of bugs and minor feature requests.

Resolved ticket #170: Fixed a bug that could break non-player settlements near world boundaries.

Resolved ticket #171: Implemented a feature request for demolishing light structures.

Resolved ticket #172: Fixed a pathing bug that could occur when entities were trying to navigate near world boundaries.

Resolved ticket #173: Fixed a movement bug that could lock up any autonomous mobile entity moving on a world boundary.

Resolved ticket #174: Added a bunch of new event artwork from Jennifer for plague outbreaks, barbarian attacks, and crop blight.

Resolved ticket #175: Removed test print statements that had accidentally made their way into production code.

Resolved ticket #179: Added in-game video tutorial system, embedded directly into OC's main UI.

Resolved ticket #181: Added a micro world size, smaller than small worlds. This was needed to cut down on the size of world files that are now embedded with the installer for the tutorial world.

Resolved ticket #182: Fixed a bug that could occur when a colonist harvests a plant node that's afflicted with blight.

Resolved ticket #183: Implemented a feature request to distribute a tutorial world along with the installer. Players can follow along the video tutorial series in the exact same world where the videos were made.

Resolved ticket #180: Fixed a world load bug that could occur if you saved a world before selecting a landing site. This might have been the world load issue that RetroPrincess encountered.

Resolved ticket #178: Created an initial, albeit rough, set of videos to comprise a series of step-by-step getting started tutorials.
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Re: Release Notes

Postby Administrator » Sun Jan 08, 2017 11:36 pm

Version 0.5.25 is out! I'm calling this the RetroPrincess release, since most of it is addressing bugs she's found and feature requests she's made. Big thanks to RP for her part in this new version!

Resolved ticket #185: Added new sprites delivered by Jericho at the end of December. This includes civilian combat sprites for all main faction, human adults (they should now show general combat animations when using firearms). Menu icons and item sprites were also included.

Resolved ticket #186: This was a severe, world-breaking bug found by RP that would create broken world states and irreparably corrupt world saves. It occurred when trying to reclaim items deployed in a light structure. Because of the severity of this bug's effects, it was a top-priority fix.

Resolved ticket #188: This was another bug identified by RP. I'd call it the goofy cousin of ticket #186, and it related to creating orders to reclaim items in light structures.

Resolved ticket #187: This was a feature request to add all the awesome faction names that Jennifer invented.

Resolved ticket #189: This was a feature request to separate male and female first names for major factions.

Resolved ticket #177: This was a RetroPrincess inspired feature request to add filters to the order management interface. These changes should make it easier to find desired orders quickly and easily.

Hopefully some more polish is added by this release, further improving usability and fixing a critical bug that was preventing / breaking progress. It's my hope that, at this point, you guys can make it all the way through the existing video tutorial series, and I'll include more to try out in the next release!
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Re: Release Notes

Postby Administrator » Fri Jan 13, 2017 11:18 pm

Version 0.5.26 is out! I spent the better part of this week assembling marketing and business materials, plus starting work on putting together an Outer Colony trailer. This release does contain an important bug fix, a solid new feature from RetroPrincess that really helps ease play, and a bunch more video tutorials!

Resolved ticket #191: This was a startup bug affecting how encoded enumerations were loading. It could mess up certain animated sprites.

Resolved ticket #192: This was a fix to the visuals in the education policy interface. Jennifer requested this about 7 months ago, but it's now squared away!

Resolved ticket #193: Added a "Save As" feature for creating world checkpoint / backup saves. This way, if you mess something up in a later save, you can revert to an earlier point and resume development from there. It makes playing much easier, since regular save-as checkpoints basically prevent you from irreparably wrecking a colony.

Resolved ticket #194: Loadsa' new tutorials! We've covered all the planned topics up to offworld trade, including:

24. Preparation, Mining, Manufacturing
25. Chemical Power Generation
26. Improved Water Infrastructure
27. Landing Sites
28. Trade Stockpiles
29. Offworld Trade

With each release, we're making great progress on improving OC's usability and shallowing out its learning curve. We'll have complete coverage of all features in video tutorials soon enough. Huge thanks to all testers for their contributions to this and all other releases!!
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Re: Release Notes

Postby Administrator » Wed Jan 18, 2017 10:01 pm

Version 0.5.27 has hit the streets. This release took a bit longer than I would've liked, but my attention has been split between coding and creating promotional materials for Outer Colony.

This release contains fixes to some issues that Anachronic and RP identified, as well as implementations for a couple of feature requests. It's a bit of a light release in terms of number of bugs addressed, but a couple of these were heavy time sinks when it came to finding a good solution. Not all bugs are created equal.

Resolved ticket #196: This is an awesome request by RP to smooth out the usability of some of the game's text boxes. Imperator had voiced a similar request in a VoIP discussion before the holidays, and this is a huge help to just making the controls feel better.

Resolved ticket #198: This bug took some serious time to square away, as there were a couple of underlying rendering issues that were screwing up more than was immediately apparent from the bug report. This should result in significantly improved rendering in the Z level view, giving players a much clearer idea of what's on the current Z level and what's immediately below it.

Resolved ticket #199: Anachronic reported some performance issues in a thread on these boards, and I attributed them to inefficiencies in rendering. There is room for optimization, and during profiling, I noticed that mini map rendering was taking more processing resources than it should've been. You should see about a 10-12% practical decrease in overall CPU usage for rendering frames. This was a bit of a pain to get working, but I am to keep making piecemeal optimizations until things are running perfectly, at least for Anachronic.

Resolved ticket #197: This fixed an issue with crop planting orders in open spaces above the ground. Air can no longer be tilled to support crop planting.

Resolved ticket #195: This was another solid feature request from RP that should now be adequately addressed. I've made it so that room assignment instantaneously resolves room requests from nuclear families, rather than waiting until the family member uses the room. This makes everything more clear about which states are being resolved when. I've also improved the requested state text to try to make it more clear that one family member makes a request on behalf of an entire nuclear family, and that room assignments automatically cause all members of the nuclear family to move in.
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Re: Release Notes

Postby Administrator » Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:31 am

Version 0.5.28 is out.

In gathering trailer footage, I've managed to hit a bunch of new bugs, and their fixes necessitated another quick release. Some of these are concurrency-induced failures that can only be hit by playing for a large number of hours, but I've been exercising lots of mechanics very hard for trailer production, so it's been fertile ground for bug identification.

Resolved ticket #200: Fixed a bug where leftover credits from embarkation configuration weren't being rolled over to the player's colony when starting.

Resolved ticket #202: Fixed a bug with satellite expeditions breaking things when they tried building their outposts too close to the world's edge.

Resolved ticket #201: This was a fear issue where workers were abandoning orders and fleeing in the face of aggression from very small predators, like a snirk. Size and creature intent should now be properly accounted for in threat assessment.

Resolved ticket #203: This was a bug in changing Z level text that could occur as a result of the overhaul it received in version 0.5.27.

Resolved ticket #204: This is a usability improvement, allowing for item name filtering in the item transport / designation interface.

Resolved ticket #205: This is a usability improvement, allowing for item name filtering in the item data view.

Resolved ticket #206: This was an improvement to give a more accurate view of materials that are really available for specific purposes.

Resolved ticket #207: This was a fix to a bug with a Dagoroth child sprite not playing animations properly.

Resolved ticket #208: This was a fix for playing the new civilian firearm animations.

Resolved ticket #209: This was a feature request to add a new sort of elevation / terrain contour shading in overhead and surface views. I think it's pretty sharp, and it's a visually intuitive way to gauge the lay of the terrain.

Resolved ticket #211: This was an improvement to the order not possible readout for failed item transport orders.

Resolved ticket #210: This was a bug fix for an issue that was breaking item transport orders. Again, it was concurrency induced, and caused by specific timing on item stack splits.

Resolved ticket #212: This was a bug fix for colonists using trade designated stockpile materials for manufacturing and other purposes.

Resolved ticket #213: This was a bug fix for a memory system bug where colonists were experiencing lack of new media frustration twice as often as they should have.

Resolved ticket #214: This was a fix for a null pointer exception that could emerge when clearing certain types of item layer objects from the world.

Resolved ticket #215: This was a bug fix for incorrectly processing tile demolition orders when many locations were chosen.

Resolved ticket #216: This was a fix to a concurrency-induced, invalid state on item transported orders. It was preventing items from being retrieved from manufacturing station output hoppers.

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