Saturday, February 25, 2012

AVWW Beta 0.582 "Still Paddling The Old Knew " Released!

This one fixes a variety of bugs and regressions, and in general focuses on polish.

Ocean Travel
However, it also introduces a new guardian power -- create buoy -- and new ocean travel mechanics in general.  You no longer get sucked into ocean tiles, but you also can't go into "turbulent" waters.  And you now travel the oceans in a canoe, rather than mysteriously walking on water on the world map.  Except for deep oceans, of course, which are still traveled by ship.

The world map mechanics for the oceans are now working very well and are probably final for 1.0 -- the kludgy aspects of them have been ironed out, and they now pose barriers that you can overcome via strategically-placed lines of buoys.

The actual ocean exploration itself has had a couple of improvements, but is still very glitchy in a lot of areas.  Haven't had time to get to those just yet.

Crafting Screens
The crafting screens no longer have those giant tooltips that are always in your way, and instead require you to click the item in question to see that information.  That does add a small extra step, but there's another major benefit: you can now hover over material costs and get the material tooltips right in this popup window, rather than having to back out to the planning window.  This sort of cross-referencing is something some of our older crafting screens had, and something that players have been very vocal about wanting.

Terminology Shift For Crafting Materials
Move over "commodities and rare commodities."  There are now three categories: building materials, common ingredients, and arcane ingredients.  Hopefully this breakdown will be a lot more clear to folks in general, and it also sounds cooler.  Thanks to a lot of folks for weighing in on the names of these.

To my recollection, Keith and I never could figure out a good name for "commodities," but felt that was the best of what we'd been tossing around, and then it just kind of stayed ever since.  And then I completely forgot about even wanting to change it, and got quite used to the name.  But it was definitely due for a change!

Some Tutorial-Type Popups Added
The first time you enter a windstorm region, or whenever your continent tier increases, it pops up some messages now to make sure that you know what's going on.  It explains the mechanics a bit, and even talks about things like monster migrations -- concepts that are otherwise not documented anywhere inside the game itself.

For the ones like windstorms, there's a "don't bug me about this again" checkbox.  For ones like the continent tier increase, it doesn't provide an opt-out simply because it is otherwise easy for you to miss that the tier has increased even if you know what the increase means.

These popups help with isolated "what the heck is this new thing" moments, but they still don't address the "okay, I'm done with the intro mission, now what?" and "how the heck do I use guardian powers?" issues.  We've got plans for those also, but they are more complex, and are something I'll be working on this weekend.

More to come soon.  Enjoy!

This is a standard update that you can download through the in-game updater itself, if you already have 0.500 or later. When you launch the game, you'll see the notice of the update having been found if you're connected to the Internet at the time. If you don't have 0.500 or later, you can download that here.

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