Author Archives: inkblot

Steam Latest Branch Updated to Build 162

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Hi everyone. We’re in the home stretch for Alpha 6. We’ve just updated the build.

Patch Notes

  • Added versioning scheme for mods.
  • Improve pathfinder performance. This should greatly reduce the incidence of workers getting stuck idling around with seemingly nothing to do.
  • Fix worker confusion when the Goblin Thief appeared.

Required Change for Mod Authors

Starting in Alpha 6, your mod will need to include a version number. Stonehearth will silently fail to load any mods with a missing or incorrect version. We’ll add a UI to manage mods in a future update.

To fix your mods, add a version number to the info section of your mod’s manifest, like so.

"info" : {
   "name" : "YourModName",
   "version" : 1
},

Desktop Tuesday, Alpha 6 Update and Speed Paint!

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Hi everyone. First a quick Alpha 6 progress update. We’ve had one serious round of bug fixing already, and are about to push out a new update that focus on pathfinder improvements and other bug fixes. Once we’re satisfied that all the major bugs are squashed, we’ll push out Alpha 6 to all of you.

This week’s update is a speed paint of the Alpha 6 title screen. Enjoy!

Steam Latest Branch Updated to Build 156

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Thanks everyone for your bug reports on the Alpha 6 test branch. We’ve uploaded a new build with the following changes.

New Features

  • New inventory tab on the town menu, showing all the objects you own. This is just a first cut at the feature. We’ll add UI enhancements like categories and search in a future release.

Bug fixes

  • Terrain characteristics now properly show in the new game overview map
  • Template names with spaces now display correctly
  • Furniture in a template now works properly when moved or undeployed
  • Roof color can now be edited
  • Templates no longer sometimes move by one voxel when placed
  • Added missing icons for some recipe ingredients

Getting Ready for Alpha 6! Steam latest branch updated for testing

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Hi guys. We are officially now on the road to Stonehearth Alpha 6! We’ve put up a release candidate build on the Steam latest branch. Here are instructions for how to access the build in Steam. This is by far our biggest release update, and the whole team is excited to get it into your hands.

To celebrate, here’s a new desktop wallpaper for everyone. Click the image, then right click and save.

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Once this build has been adequately tested and debugged, we’ll push it out to everyone. Onward to Alpha 6! Here are the patch notes for this release.

Note: We’re aware of a bug that causes the Candledark mod to break this Alpha. If you installed Candledark, remove it from your mod’s directory before running the alpha.

Stonehearth Alpha 6 Release Notes

This release includes several new major features, as well as some performance enhancements and many bug fixes.

Building templates

The game now includes pre-designed buildings for houses and halls. Access the templates from the new building UI.

  • Templates can be rotated before being placed in the world
  • Templates can be edited just like normal building after being placed
  • Your own custom buildings can be saved as templates

Building improvements

The build system has gone through a major overhaul.

  • New slab tool, for building free-form structures
  • New stone materials for building parts
  • New building parts: double doors, colored roofs, and more
  • Workers can now walk through scaffolding
  • Streamlined the building designer UI

Job System Overhaul

We have added an RPG-like progression system to citizen jobs, with experience, levels, and new abilities.

  • Citizens will now gain experience and level up
  • Leveling up provides perks like more hitpoints and job-specific enhancements
  • You can now change citizens’ jobs as often as you like
  • Several new recipes for the carpenter
  • Brightbell and Frostsnap flowers are now plantable by the Farmer

Other Improvements

  • Ladders now build down when necessary
  • The size is now shown for all boxes dragged out in the world: in the building tool, farms, stockpiles, etc.
  • New command to undeploy a placed item, returning it to a stockpile.
  • Significant UI revamp of the building UI
  • Significant UI revamp of the job promotion UI
  • Added job icon to the unit frame. Clicking the icon brings up the citizen’s character sheet
  • Clicking a citizen’s name in the unit frame zooms the camera to that citizen
  • Show icons for ingredients in the crafting UI
  • Audio improvements. Improved the base volume and falloff for location-specific sounds

Bug Fixes

  • Significant pathfinder performance improvements
  • Massive memory-use optimizations
  • Citizens no longer own their own beds, and are much more aggressive about finding a bed to sleep in before giving up
  • Fix bug that prevented many buildings from being completed
  • Fix multiple crash bugs when destroying an entity
  • Fix embedded ladders in the terrain after building a building
  • Fixed crash bug affecting Vista computers
  • Fixed score calculation, allowing new immigrants again
  • Fix for the camera getting stuck in obstacles like trees
  • Combatants will no longer try to fight each other if they are on different vertical terrain levels
  • Fixes to save/load bugs

Desktop Tuesday, How We Develop New Features!

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Hi guys,

For this Tuesday’s update I want to give you some insight as to how add new features into the game, with a real world example. The example is “Different Colored Stuff.” Imagine the Comfy Bed that’s currently in the game. It’s a brown bed with a blue sheet on it.

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Of course, it would be fantastic if you could customize the color of that bed. In fact, here are some great modding projects that already add some color support to the game:  Colors Mod by Chimeforest, Tool for re-coloring models.

Because of the interest and enthusiasm by Chimeforest and the rest of you guys, we are now taking a much closer look at how to fully support colors in the game. Here’s our process.

Scoping the Feature

The first step is to think about how the player will interact with the game feature. Here’s roughly how Chimeforest’s color system works, which sounds just peachy to us.

  • 1 bolt of cloth + 1 red dye = 1 red bolt of cloth
  • 1 red bolt of cloth + 1 mean bed = Comfy bed with a red cover.

Super cool, but there’s just one problem, and that’s the explosion of recipes for each color of thread and cloth. Ideally we want just one recipe for “thread” which optionally takes a dye as an ingredient. So, we’re going to add a few additional requirements to the feature.

  • Resources can define a color palette
  • Crafted objects inherit palettes from their ingredients
  • Models are re-colored according to their inherited palettes

The idea here is that we can have just one “Comfy Bed” recipe, and the model will automatically change based on whether the bed was made with red cloth or blue cloth or mauve cloth.

Ok, so at this point we know how we want the feature to behave. Now we need to figure out how to build it!

Writing the Development Spec

At this point we will all sit together in a room and hash out how we will code up the feature. We capture those thoughts in a development spec. The purpose of the spec is to roughly describe the structure of the data and code that will implement the features. We do this for several reasons:

  1. So everyone on the team understands how the feature will work. So anyone can more easily contribute to the code once it’s written.
  2. To give everyone a chance to voice their input. Different team members have different specialties (AI, design, UI, etc), and will at times make important improvements to the original idea.
  3. So we don’t forget what we actually decided. ;)

There are all different methods for writing development specs. At Team Radiant we try to make our specs as concise as possible, and leave the small implementation details up to the developer who will be coding up the feature.

Here is our actual spec for coloring objects in Stonehearth (typos and all). Note that we won’t start implementation on this for a while yet, but when we do this describes how the feature will work.

Link to the Stonehearth Color Table Spec

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The Stonehearth Alpha is now available through Humble Bundle.

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