Alpha 5 balance hotfix

Posted July 6th, 2014 by Tynan Sylvester

You all knew a hotfix was coming! It’s like a tradition now!

The good thing is that this isn’t a bug hotfix, but a balance one. I’d been hearing a lot of reports that the global psychic drone event – causing -25 to mood – was harming play. So until I can rebalance it, it’s disabled in Alpha5b. The crashed ship part event seen in the release video is still present.

To update, you just have to change one number in one file:

Open Notepad or some other text editor.

With Notepad, open [YourRimWorldFolder]/Mods/Core/Defs/IncidentDefs/BaseIncidents.xml, and find this text:

  <IncidentDef>
<defName>PsychicDrone</defName>
<workerClass>IncidentWorker_PsychicDrone</workerClass>
<chance>1.2</chance>
<minRefireDays>8</minRefireDays>
<favorability>Bad</favorability>
</IncidentDef>

Set <chance>1.2</chance> to <chance>0</chance>.

Or, you can re-download the game from your old link.

I’ll be reworking this event in future versions.

Alpha 5 – Under Siege released

Posted July 4th, 2014 by Tynan Sylvester

We’re back with another alpha of RimWorld! Alpha 5 brings on lots of juicy new features and improvements. You can follow our day-to-day work on the changelog.

If you own the game, you should get an update email from us. You can also get Alpha 5 by re-downloading from the link you used before (it is a permanent link and always has the newest version). Anyone still having trouble should start at this thread.

Also note that this build will not load old savegames, so keep your old install separate if you want to finish an Alpha 4 colony.

A quick recap of improvements in Alpha 5:

  • Sieges added. Raiders will now sometimes besiege the colony by setting up a fortified position nearby and bombarding you until you die or come out to break the siege. Of course this also means there are now researchable and buildable mortar weapons – both explosive and incendiary.
  • Escape ship added. You can now, at great cost, build a ship to escape the planet if you wish.
  • Crashed ancient ship part incident added. Sometimes this bad boy will crash-land nearby and start emitting an ever-increasing psychic drone that slowly drives colonists insane. Attack it to make it stop, but beware its defenses.
  • New mechanoid type added – the scyther.
  • Many new sound effects from the illustrious Alistair Lindsay.
  • A new gear system allows changing out of clothing. Clothing now has basic effects, like reducing damage or movement speed.
  • There is now an info card you can view for most things in the game. For weapons, it shows statistics about damage, accuracy, and so on. For animals, it displays health, damage, meat amounts. Lots of other things can be inspected as well.
  • A game history tracker records the history of your colony in graphs of wealth, population, and happiness, as well as recording individual important events.
  • Game history is now uploaded automatically to our servers after an opt-in prompt is agreed to. This uploads your game history – the same one you see on your history graph – to us to help us balance future versions.
  • More translations added (Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, others) and existing translations updated.
  • Language can now be switched by clicking the flag on the main game screen.
  • Lots of other small improvements.

Thanks for the ongoing support everyone!

Randy Random reported broken in Alpha 4

Posted June 16th, 2014 by Tynan Sylvester

Just a quick heads up to everyone. Apparently the Randy Random storyteller is broken in Alpha 4. It starts off all right, but over time it doesn’t ramp up challenges, which makes the endgame dull.

If anyone is playing a Randy game, you can change your storyteller to Cassandra, who is working well. Just follow these steps:

  1. Start the game, go to options, click “open savegame folder”.
  2. In a text editor, open the save file you want to modify.
  3. Do a search for “Randy”. (You’ll find it between two <defName> tags.)
  4. Replace the word “Randy” with “Cassandra”.
  5. Save the document, close your text editor, and restart the game. Your Randy game should now run with Cassandra.

Sorry about this everyone. We’ll have him fixed up good for Alpha 5.

Alpha4f released

Posted June 8th, 2014 by Tynan Sylvester

I’ve just uploaded Alpha4f, a balance and design hotfix. Everyone who bought the game will be getting emails about it. Even if you didn’t, any of your old download links will always get you the latest version.

Warning: This version will not work with savegames from any older version (including Alpha4a through Alpha4e).

As always, anyone with download trouble should please read this forum post for info on what to do.

Note that this update does not include Alpha 5 content like artillery mentioned in the changelog. That you’ll have to wait for.

The major changes are:

  • Wood log and wood planks are now merged into one wood resource. This reduces pointless early-game busywork for colonists (sawmill work), and reduces confusion about exactly what kind of wood is needed to build what. I hope to bring back the wood/plank distinction in the future, but it will have to be part of a larger system where many objects can be constructed of different materials while still being the same object type. See this forum discussion.
  • Storytellers balance has been redesigned. They now cue on different signals and will generally track against the player in a more entertaining way.
  • Randy Random is no longer totally broken and unbeatable.
  • Pila weapon is nerfed from 45 damage to 30 damage per hit.
  • Stone wall health raised from 400 to 650.
  • Animal insanity waves were broken and never occurred. They are now, again, part of the threat mix the storytellers will use against you.

Hope you guys like it! Let’s hope this one is the charm for Alpha 4.

Alpha 4 hotfixed

Posted June 3rd, 2014 by Tynan Sylvester

Alpha 4 has been hotfixed to Alpha4e. If you want to update, you can re-use your existing download link. It never changes and always has the latest version.

If you’re not sure about your version, open Version.txt in the RimWorld folder. The latest is 0.4.462 rev40### (where # can be anything).

  • Alpha4b added the source code which is supposed to be included.
  • Alpha4c fixed the storytellers, who had a bug that made them permanently placid instead of ramping up over long games. Now they will ramp up properly and eventually, probably, kill you. But hey, it’s all about the drama!
  • Alpha4d lengthened the ramp-up time for challenge. It also adds a “need sawmill” alert to reduce confusion around the wood planks system.
  • Alpha4e rebalanced the storytellers again in light of this poll.

Sorry for all the hotfixes. Testing storytellers properly is really hard. We’re working on some automated metrics so balancing won’t be such a scattershot process in the future.

Your savegames from all Alpha 4 versions will still work.

Alpha 4 – Giant Centipede Robots released

Posted June 1st, 2014 by Tynan Sylvester

Here it is, Alpha 4, featuring giant centipede robots and lots of other fun stuff. If you bought the game you should get an email with the update. If not, check out this forum thread.

 

I forgot to mention in the video: the map generator has more variation now and tends towards more verdant surroundings, so it’s a bit less of a desert. I redesigned the storytellers to focus on colony wealth more than combat strength in determining what to throw at you (no more avoiding turrets just to seem weak). The storytellers are also much better at handling near-death situations. If you’re almost dead, your wealth will be low and the raids will soften (since you have nothing worth stealing), so you may be able to recover instead of being guaranteed to get steamrolled.

Also, we now have tension music from Alistair Lindsay when a combat situation is in progress.

We also have good support for a wide variety of languages now: German, French, Polish, Chinese, Russian, Slovak, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch. If you speak any of these languages and are part of a non-English-language game community, let them know that this game will work for them!

Major improvements in this build:

  • Wood economy. Logs, sawing, planks, flooring, tree growing, and more.
  • More stuff to research.
  • Crematorium.
  • Slag refinery.
  • More map variation.
  • Mechanoids raids.
  • Tension music for combat situations.
  • More songs for normal gameplay.
  • Smarter AI storytellers that focus on wealth and let you recover from serious damage.
  • Region system for better performance.
  • Tons of AI and usability improvements to hunting AI, player tutor, alerts, etc.

You can check out my full work log for more detail on exactly what was accomplished.

Come chill with us on the forums if you have something to say!

Alpha3 stabilization builds released

Posted April 11th, 2014 by Tynan Sylvester

APRIL 15 UPDATE: Silently updated to Alpha3f. This version fixes a bug that caused save games to sometimes fail to load. Alpha3f will break save compatibility from earlier versions.

APRIL 13 UPDATE: Silently updated to Alpha3e with one minor fix.

APRIL 12 UPDATE: Silently updated to Alpha3d. Fixes specified below.

I’ve just uploaded Alpha3c, a slightly changed version which fixes a number of rare bugs that cropped up after the Alpha 3 release.

Your savegames from Alpha 3 should still work (though you’ll have to copy the .rim files over to a Saves folder in the new install directory).

The bugs fixed were:

Sorry about asking you to update twice in two days three times in three days. We did a lot of testing with a good-sized test team, but it’s amazing what crops up when thousands of people get their hands on the game. I’m going to have to consider other test and development processes to try to avoid this kind of situation in the future.

Original post regarding Alpha 3b follows:

Someone found a bug that will sometimes make it impossible to load savegame. I’d added error recovery code to the game and re-uploaded it as Alpha3b. If you downloaded the game earlier today, you may want to re-download (using the original link). Your download limit will reset. You’ll know you got the new version because the zip file is called “RimWorldAlpha3b”. Saves from Alpha3 will probably still work (even ones that were broken before).

Alpha 3 – Factional Infighting released

Posted April 10th, 2014 by Tynan Sylvester

The changelog has a full accounting of changes (read between builds 363 and 408).

Anyone having trouble with their download – please see this forum thread.

For mods, you may want to start with the Big Bang Alpha 3 mod pack.

New Stuff

The big new thing is the faction system. Now we have generated factions like pirate bands, outlander towns, and tribes. They even generate names for themselves! This leads to hilarity with three-way battles, buying off factions to get their allegiance so they’ll send fighters to help you, and getting raided by a dude’s friends after you capture him and beat him up. The video shows this in detail.

Alistair Lindsay’s music is in this build! Al is obviously still refining and expanding the music, but I think this is a great start. Listen to the dulcet tones of the mixed sci-fi/Western theme he’s been cooking up for the past 3 months.

There’s now a planning tool, so you can put down inert designations that don’t do anything. This helps you plan your colony visually, on the map. (I recommend you don’t put thousands of them, though; they’re not rendered in a super-efficient way right now.)

The map generates in a more varied way now, using a data-driven algorithm which you can mod (from the MapGeneratorDefs folder).

Tons more stuff is moddable now. And you can write proper code mods that link DLLs into the game, easily, and in a way that’s compatible with other code mods.

There is a proper hunting system which allows you to mark animals for hunting and let your colonists handle the details. Beware sending unarmed colonists to hunt boomrats by kicking them to death. The rats go boom.

The game has partial support for localization now. This was a last-minute addition, so it’s not all locked in yet and not everything can be translated. But lots of stuff can be. Now the Russian hackers can stop hacking the DLL to make the game display in Cyrillic. A rough German fan translation from TheEisbaer is included with Alpha 3.

The bill interface has been redesigned and smartened. You can now set colonists to maintain a certain stockpile of a certain kind of item. No more repeatedly ordering them to cook 4 meals every day. Just set it to “make until you have 10 meals” and it’ll run forever.

Finally, and very important, is the many small AI improvements. The AI in Alpha 2 was a little bit derpy. This was a consequence of the game increasing in complexity but the AI not becoming smarter fast enough to handle the new situations it was trying to deal with. Now, you won’t see colonists eat raw potatoes out of the stockpile when there is a dispenser ready. They will put food in the dispenser, then use it. And colonists who make something at a table will actually put it in storage now. And there are many other improvements.

Have fun! See you on the forums, Twitter, and reddit:

http://ludeon.com/forums/
https://twitter.com/TynanSylvester
http://www.reddit.com/r/RimWorld/

Ty

Alpha 2 – Cannibal Modders released

Posted February 26th, 2014 by Tynan Sylvester

Alpha 2 is out! This time we’ve added tons of modding support, butchery and cooking (including cannibalism with attendant psychological effects), an ambience sound suite from Alistair, and a pile of other goodies including various oft-requested features.

Here’s the video with the info:

The changelog has a full accounting of changes (read between builds 334 and 363).

Anyone having trouble with their download – please see this forum thread.

Cheers,

Ty

Alpha 1 released

Posted January 27th, 2014 by Tynan Sylvester

It’s finally here – Alpha 1!

Everyone who has the game got this on January 27th via email. If you didn’t get it, more info here.

(Mac users: Please install the Mods folder alongside your app folder, not inside it. This will be rearranged for next build, but for now Mods needs to be there. Also, if your mouse right-click isn’t working, go fullscreen.)

This version brings a host of improvements on the venerable build 254b from last November. Take a look:

To install the new version, just delete the old one and unzip the new one somewhere. Old saves will be unusable in the new version.

The game is on sale at rimworldgame.com.

Here’s a rundown of the new features and changes:

Stockpiling

Resources no longer vanish into a magical storage number in the sky. Everything in the game is now present on the map at all times.

  • Players can now designate stockpile zones. These are areas on the ground where colonists are supposed to store certain kinds of items. Zones don’t cost anything because they’re not physical – they’re just AI directives.
  • Stockpile zones can be configured using a hierarchical interface to accept any combination of items. You could have one that takes all resources, or all guns, or just pistols, or only molotov cocktails, potatoes, and dead animals.
  • Stockpile zones can have priorities. Haulers will fill the highest-priority zones first, and even move items from lower-priority zones to higher-priority ones.
  • The storage and priority interface is also used for storage buildings, like food hoppers, graves, and the (currently-pointless) equipment racks.

One nice natural side-effect of this change is that your colonists will no longer starve if they have a huge food reserve but no nutrient paste dispenser. They can eat the raw food right from the stockpile – though it’s not efficient, and they hate eating raw potatoes. Also note that animals will sometimes eat food out of your stockpile.

Putting everything on the map required re-jiggering a lot of existing systems (which is why we did it now, so we won’t have to re-jigger even more systems to do it later):

  • Selling goods to space traders now requires that you physically move goods to an outdoor launch pad. This is done by building the pad and configuring stockpile zones on top of it.
  • Nutrient dispensers can no longer draw food magically from the sky reservoir. You must build food hoppers adjacent to them, and keep those hoppers filled with raw foods.
  • There is a new Cooking work type added. Currently, all it does it refill food hoppers. In future it will actually cook stuff. However, we added it now because sometimes you want filling the hoppers to be at a different priority from general hauling.

Adaptive tutor

There was a janky tutor before, but he basically ran on a rail and told you the same things every game, whether you needed to know them or not. The new adaptive tutor is much smarter in providing only the information players need.

The AT watches everything you do and keeps an internal database of how much he thinks you understand various game concepts. A concept is something like, “you can zoom the camera”, or “you can capture enemies by doing X”. He also watches what’s happening in the game, and works out a measure of how much you need to know each different concept at the moment. And, in his database of concepts, each concept has a natural priority. For examples, camera movement is considered more essential than opening the wiki.

Finally, the AT keeps track of the player’s “relax desire”. This is how much the player probably doesn’t want to see another tutor message right now. People only want to absorb information so fast, so we don’t want to overwhelm. Relax desire peaks just after a message appears, and falls off over time.

Evaluating all these together, the AT shows you training messages if the combination of their priority and immediate need-to-know exceeds the player’s desire to relax. The final outcome is:

  • If you already know a concept, you’ll likely demonstrate it before the tutor tries to teach you anything in it, and you’ll never see the message for it.
  • If there’s nothing you urgently need to know, the tutor will give you nice long intervals between messages.
  • If you really need to know something, it gets bumped to the front of the list and overwhelms the relax desire, and is shown nearly immediately. This is for cases like, “You can rescue your bleeding-to-death colonist by doing X”.

There’s more to do to perfect this guy (like making messages point to elements on the map or on the UI), but so far I think it’s a great improvement on the old non-adaptive tutor.

Also, the AT’s database of player knowledge is now saved separately from maps, so it will stay between games. To reset it, delete Knowledge.xml in your RimWorld saves folder.

Modding

Modding support is started but not finished.

Many of the definitions in the game – some buildings, all sounds, hair, training concepts – are now exposed in a Mods folder, in the Core mod, in editable XML files. However, some data is still not exposed, like most Thing properties (especially the ones essential to making weapons or plants), race definitions for making animals or alternate humanoids, trader profiles, storyteller tunings, and so on. In addition, there’s not yet a system to install, activate, and deactivate mods. All you can do is destructively edit the core files.

Development tools have been added to the game. You can activate them with the “development mode” checkbox in the menus. For more info on these, check out the basic RimWorld modding document.

This system will be finished in a future release. Hopefully soon, because I grew up as a modder and can’t wait to see what people will do modding RimWorld.

Menu art

You’ll notice some beautiful new art for our menus. Thank Ricardo Tomé, Portuguese digital painting expert, for spicing up the menu backgrounds and giving some life to the AI Storytellers.

Character art, apparel, and hair

The character art in game has been redone by Rhopunzel, combined with some fun color-randomizing code by yours truly. So pawns can come in a variety of body shapes, skin colors, and head shapes.

And that’s just when they’re naked. In addition, there is a new apparel system. Characters can wear multiple layers of clothing, and the clothing itself is randomized. So you could have a guy in a green T-shirt. Or a dude in a white T-shirt, with an armor vest and a tan duster. The number of combinations is nearly infinite. Finally, hairdos are now randomized as well.

Currently, they’re just randomized for everyone and cannot be changed. In future, apparel will be fleshed out systemically, and you’ll see different clothing and hairdos for people from different cultures. One pirate band will wear all leather and spiky mohawks. A nearby tribe will send raiding parties in animal skins with tribal hairdos. And you could enforce an all-pink-clothes-with-pink-afro colony uniform if you wanted.

Overall we’re looking to get to a point where colonists and pirates can be characterized and recognized just by looking at them. The tools to do that are now in, but they’re used haphazardly. Upcoming versions will have characters spawn with proper clothing and change their clothing as appropriate. Clothes will also help protect characters, affect their movement speed, and so on.

Fixes and tunings

Tons of things have been fixed and tuned, including recruiting chances, storyteller difficulties, and so on.

Creative content

If you got the Name in Game or Backstory in Game pack and had your content approved before Friday or so (when I content-locked the Alpha for final stability testing), your content will be in the game. It’s quite refreshing to have a nice deep pool of content to draw from. There aren’t a massive number of backstories – you can become familiar with individuals if you play a lot – but there are enough that the game isn’t under pressure to repeat anything.

Also, the options menu now has an “encouraged spawn list” of names. Put a last name on here, and the game will prefer spawning characters from this list. So you’ll want to put your own name on the list, and perhaps those of your friends, and watch yourself spawn in!

Great thanks to all the testers and the two creative rewards moderators who helped make this happen. Have fun and watch out for the raging muffalo!

Tynan