Friday, May 2, 2014

TLF Version 1.012 Released (War And Spies)

Version 1.012 is now out, and I have to say, I'm really excited about this one.  The biggest thing is that you can now tell why races are going to war when they do.  But you can also see a lot of things about why you can't get races to go to war when you would ask them to, AND there were bugs fixed that were preventing you from doing that when the races were just in an "uneasy truce" sort of state.

Also, assassinating hive queens is now made of awesome.  It really makes them hate you, but it removes all their protection from bombing.  So if you, you know, are trying to nuke them from orbit... well, before that was almost impossible.  Now you can make a desperate bid to do so in a four-year window, after which they're really going to hate your guts.

The Evucks also got a whole lot more interesting with this one, with five new political deals that you can do with them.  These new deals use the Evuck spy probes at other planets to cause turmoil that can be quite major.  These are kind of like the anti-Andors in terms of how they are useful in undermining other races, versus helping them.

I had been planning on adding some more quests today, but I wound up working on the Evucks stuff instead since that is always available (presuming friendliness with the Evucks) as opposed to a temporary thing that comes and goes.

But I also did make some extensions to the quests-related mechanisms, to better prepare for when there are more quests.  These are pretty important, because you were going to be frustrated with the lack of control over quests without these in there.  Firstly there are now (very cheap) diplomats that you can hire in order to make quests from certain races a lot more likely.  So if you want to help someone, get a diplomat and they become a lot more likely to ask you for help as compared to other races.

Additionally, you can now "reject" quests, which provides a third option other than just ignoring or accepting them.  This frees up a quest slot (you only have two) so that something new can come in over the comm link.  With an increasing number of quests planned for the future, this sort of thing is key so that you don't have to sit waiting around for new quests in an annoying fashion.  And the diplomats make it so that it's less of a roll of the dice which races are asking you for help.

Anyway, no new quests as-yet, but that's next on my list of things to do, because that will again really improve the player's ability to effect the solar system in really major ways, which is something I know is the #1 issue on the core community's mind.  As it stands, I think you have a lot of new tools in this release even without those quests, so that's pretty sweet.

--------------- Ongoing Updates All This Month ---------------
The support of the community, and the growth of it, remain amazing to me.  I've been promising daily new features, but this week it's become clear that there are other things more on your mind.  Things like added interfaces, new AI behaviors and options, and things like that.  So, you know what?  I'm just going to go with that -- those count as features, really, in that they help to make the game more interesting and easier to understand and play.

So what else is going on?  Well, we're going to be working at this pace on the game for at least another month, which means that you're going to be seeing lots of good things coming.  If you've liked what you've seen in the last two weeks, you can imagine what another month of that will be like.  We do have two other things in the works as well, but we're not quite ready to reveal either one of them (although I am betting that most long-time Arcen fans can guess what both of them are).  Suffice it to say, neither one of these two other things are going to impact the general updates, improvements, and free additions to TLF that are coming over this month.

More to come Monday.  Enjoy!

This is a standard update that you can download through the in-game updater, or if you have Steam it will automatically update it for you.  To force Steam to download it faster, just restart Steam and it will do so.

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