This entry will be a short one as progress has been slow this past week and holidays are just around the corner!
I’m currently working on some optimizations for when cities have grown into a fairly large size. I’m going to create a “short cut” of sorts for when buildings need to find a road to attach to when they grow as this has been a source of sporadic slow down. I’ve also started implementing cross fading between lods, which means I’ve been able to lower the distance for the first LOD without visable pop-in etc. I’m hoping to be able to quickly add a distance LOD so that the city sky line will show even at very long distances (right now the city “fades out” when the camera is far away).
I’ve started reworking the post processing stack a bit for optimization purposes as well as lighting for visibility purposes. The main purpose with the latter being to have the entirety of the city properly lit, regardless of whether it is built on the “underside” or “upside”.
Since the last update, the policy system is now rigged for continued implementation, meaning I can now start adding in the “edge case” political systems, starting with communism and laissez faire capitalism, as these are the most tricky ones that require reworking parts of the underlying systems in the game. More on this will follow in the next devlog.
In the next update, I will have fixed the missing translations as well as adding more tutorials. I also hope to start getting both citizen reps and advisors in. Advisors are just your “team” that will help you out in different scenarios. Citizen reps are citizens you will be able to follow and who will give you their take on how the city is doing.
As mentioned, this was a short entry. Next devlog will be up on the first sunday of next year (in roughly two weeks)! Happy holidays!
0.17 is live and features a host of new features and fixes. The crash bug mentioned yesterday should now hopefully be fixed. Here’s the changelog since 0.16:
New major features:
– New challenge levels added.
– Added new family and social policies. Some policies have also been moved to more fitting categories.
– Tea, coffee and cocoa farms added. Beverage processing plant added.
New minor features:
– Econopedia now features what policies affect specific entries such as health, education etc.
– Discrete policies now display icon for corresponding political direction.
– Policy window spruced up a bit.
– Removed building placement constraint near atmosphere. Now, if a block has been placed, a building can be placed on top of it.
– Number of max trades increased to 50 sales and 50 purchases with Customs house. Without, only 5 each.
– Added notice for when building materials are running out and a zone wants to grow.
– Atmoports now have a maxcapacity (100k citizens or 20 active trades). Once reached, population growth will slow down.
– Because it takes a while to initialize resource prices and demand curves, there’s now a loading sequence when opening the trade panel after loading the city. This is to prevent starting a trade when the price is zero (which makes the commission zero).
– Resource demand values and prices are now saved.
– Goods ticket demands lowered.
– Increased health production in clinics and hospitals slightly.
– Discrete policy selection locked until a city hall is built.
– Importance of trade increased by increased cost (more revenue on sale, more expensive to purchase).
– Currency value now properly affects trade prices. High value currency means its cheaper to buy, but less revenue is made selling. Low currency value means it’s more profitable to sell, but expensive to buy. Since the currency initially is usually weak, this means it’s more profitable to make the resources needed rather than buy. Over time as the city grows and the currency can be strengthened, the more viable it becomes to provide resources through long time trading contracts.
– Nano structs now required for top density of buildings.
– Rebalanced pricing, and output of all production buildings.
– World limits expanded slightly, to allow building closer to the atmosphere
– Early building roster now has slightly lower upkeep.
– Warehouse capacity lowered.
– Certain policies now affect research.
– Happiness tweaked.
– Residents now demand tea, coffee, cocoa and processed drinks!
Major bug fixes:
– Issue with buildings sometimes not registering base efficiency fixed (occured sometimes when buildings were placed near a long straight road).
Minor bug fixes:
– Cars now deregister properly when a road is demolished.
– Fixed issue where vehicles would sometimes shortcut through roads instead of leaping off the edge when switching planes.
– Cars update home nodes on a thread to avoid them bogging down the main thread.
– Fixed bug where destroying bridges would leave the road tiles intact.
– Fixed issue where bridges would sometimes not register roads placed in 90 degree angle relative to the bridge’s roadtiles.
– Tweaked bridges and allowing roads to be built properly beneath bridges.
– Fixed credit icon on goods tickets.
– Health policy now adds health production from clinics and hospitals as expected.
– Education policy now adds education production from schools etc. as expected.
– Destruct icon for super absorbent fixed.
– Resource separator is no longer affected by boom/bust cycle.
– Recycling center and resource separator now consumer prioritized, meaning these buildings use resources before other buildings. This prevents trash management to not be stopped when there’s a lack of labour.
– Fixed case where amount remaining in tradepanel would display negative values.
– Fixed bug where sometimes starting a trade would not directly display the new trade item in the trade panel.
– Fixed gloss and normal maps for a handful of building footprints.
– Fix for building vicinity bug where buildings would sometimes not properly deregister a nearby building when it has been demolished.
– Fixed seldomly occuring null-ref error when demolishing a building while road network IDs are being assigned.
– Optimized vehicle position retrieval, estimated sevenfold performance improvement for cars (from 1,4ms per frame to 0.2ms).
– Autoexposure dropped.
– Global time tick speed decreased slightly.
– A number of new policies have been added, forcing a redesign of the policy system. This means cities with policies enabled and saved will be loaded with incorrect policies enabled.
– Tweaked post processing stack slightly to avoid bloom triggering by sky.
– Spruced up farm buildings.
Overall, this version should be substantially more stable and less glitchy than earlier versions. It provides me with a good base to continue building on the policy system and continue adding new features. As for the road map, I’ve still got some catching up to do, but this version crosses a few items off the list. Remaining items are ongoing as of this version and should make it into the update early/mid January 2020, after which a new road map will be published.
As mentioned in prior posts, this version features a full ten challenge levels. Further challenges will be added once more systems get finished so that the challenges can make proper use of these.
Food production now features coffee, tea and cocoa as well as processed drinks. These items have also been added into the demands of residences and come into play around the second to third density for each building. Drinks are a slight bit more costly to produce, but less is required to keep residents happy. Aside from new farms, the existing farms have also gotten a slight face lift.
Trade and policy has been more stable. Several annoying glitches relating to trade and issuing trade have been fixed. The number of active trades now tops at 5 sales and 5 purchases when there’s no customs house. Once one is built, 10 sales and 10 purchases can be made at the same time with one Atmoport. Building more ports allows more goods to enter and exit the city. To check the available capacity, Atmoports now have an efficiency indicator in the building information panel.
Policy costs and effects have been tweaked further, and several new ones have been added. Along with this, revenue from taxes and funding costs have been changed a bit as well.
For a limited time, over xmas, the game will be winter themed. Eventually I will add seasons into the game properly, and allowing them to either shift naturally via in game time or system time.
Lastly, there’s been a number of fixes to glitchy traffic. There’s still some tweaking left to do, but there should no longer be mass spawning of vehicles or masses of vehicles going off-road.
This entry will be rather short, as I’m battling the cold of the decade.
Next weekend, the 0.17 version of the game will go live. This version mixes optimization, bug fixes and new features. Primarily it features a finalization of the base set of policies (more will be added later on, but there are now enough for continued development). This means, there is now a foundation on which to build the implementation of edge cases that I have advertised earlier. When policy has been pushed far enough in one direction, it will allow players to enable specific political ideologies that come with some bonuses and penalties and will offer up new playing styles.
The newly added policy features a bunch of family life and social policies:
To illustrate where a political ideology can be adopted, here is where enough progressive policy has been enacted to (once it’s implemented) enable socialism:
Implementing the ideologies will take quite a lot of time, since they affect base systems quite a bit and will require specific balancing, but I’m hoping at least one or two (ie, communism and laissez faire capitalism) will make it in this year.
This version will also feature a lot of tweaking of production, costs and consumtion. Resource demand has been tweaked, and goods ticket costs are now much lower, making them more viable to gain rewards. The customs house now also enables not only long term trade items, but also increases the maximum amount of concurrent trades (currently set to 30, but will be 10 without customs house and 100 with).
There have been some sporadic issues with buildings not properly registering/deregistering when a nearby good/bad building has been demolished. This is now fixed. Also fixed is building roads under bridges. Vehicle behaviour is now less erratic when demolishing roads and vehicles properly reset to home position when they are out of view.
Challenges are being added in as well. In this version, there will be 10 challenges. This also marks the last challenges added for quite a while. I will hold off on adding more until policies have been expanded further, to allow for challenges that make use of these features.
Next week, if I’m well enough that is, I’m hoping to add the coffee, cocoa, tea and processed beverages buildings. If they are added, new resources will added to the building resource demands. These drinks will be required to grow buildings from density 2 to 3 and up. Another education building will also make it in hopefully, the preschool.
There will also be a need to build additional atmoports once the city is large enough and has resources moving in and out of the city, as Atmoports will be given a max capacity.
Work on 0.17 continues. This version will be quite heavy on optimization and bug fixes, as well as additions to the policy side of the game. First off, there will be additional policies to choose from generally. I’m also working towards getting the “extreme” policies in as well. Once a player has moved their position towards to corners of the gal-tan map, this will enable a set of additional policies. If the player moves far enough along a left and authoritarian direction, they will unlock communism and related policies. Right and authoritarian unlocks fascism. Liberal left unlocks social libertarian and liberal right unlock laissez faire capitalism. Implementing these will be gradual since they have rather significant effects on some of the core systems in the game.
In the move towards these new additions I’ve started clarifying the role of different policies in the econopedia further:
As new policy is added, the info in the econopedia will grow as well. Similarly, the policy selection UI has been updated. To make it easier to navigate I’ve added a menu structure, so that items that are of no interest can be hidden away. I’ve also added the policy’s political direction to help guide the player how the policy affects the position on the political map. Along with a slew of new tutorials being added in the upcoming few updates, policy and policy implications will be a theme for a tutorial as well.
I’ve continued working on traffic, fixing both performance and glitching. I’ve all but fixed the issue of cars shortcutting to off locations when roads are demolished. Cars resetting now also fetch their locations via a thread, further improving traffic performance.
I’ve also managed to get health and education policies incorporated into the building information display, so that the effects of establishing a specific policy is more apparent. I’ve also increased the effects of these policies quite a bit and made additional adjustments to costs.
In the upcoming version, I hope to catch up on adding challenge levels. Hopefully I can have a solid 10 challenges in the game. The last two additions are quite difficult, which should offset the simpler challenge levels added earlier on.
The next version should be live december 15th, which is a bit later than I had hoped. This is due to the heavy work load recently, but given solid dev time in the upcoming two weeks there should be a solid version ready.