here is a small feature and fix update. There will be several of those along the universe update roadmap. Durking the update, we'll be working ~1 week per month on fixes and small features (especially for the rule system), while spending the rest of the time on the universe update.
Universe update Roadmap News: On the universe update, we are currently in the middle of GUI scaling, and close to starting to implement the sound system.
This update features a lot of new conditions and actions. The system now supports rules of different types, depending on the target (players, factions, sectors, etc). Actions are transferable to other entities: e.g. if condition on a ship is true, you can execute a player action for all players on that ship.
Here is the full changelog:
- added minimize button to advanced build mode panels on the right
- Player Mod Faction Points
- Player Set Faction Points
- Entity Mod Faction Points
- Entity Set Faction Points
- DateTime fixes
- Entity Weekly duration
- Action Bridges
- Entity -> Sector / Player / Faction
- Sector -> Entities / Players / Factions
- Player -> Sector / entered Entity / Faction
- Faction -> Players
- 'Entity system claimed by' condition
- player warp to sector action
- player set credits action
- player mod credits action
- player kick action
- player ban action
- player in sector cond
- player say cond (regexp)
- player send message action
- player last joined condition
- player kick out of ship action
- player kill action
- segment controller in sector range condition
- all faction condition parameters now range
- sector chmod condition
- sector range condition
- sector contains entity count condition
- sector chmod action
- sector admin command action
- Added inverse conditions (condition group feature)
- recurring actions
- player: add credits over time
- player: add blocks
- player: add blocks over time
- fixed missing integrity triggers
- fixed beams not active on server when using logic to toggle them (logic salvage beam not working)
- fixed linear reactor level calcs
- fixed activatable modules not synching correctly (cloak drive)
- fixed torch damaging stick shops
- fixed error that would respawn Asteroids over and over if they were moved
- blockBehaviorConfig now has global defense of blocks based on type (shield, armor, block) additionally to the previous individual block effect defense (which would be a mess to adjust)
Note: it's now possible to set defense value for all block types depending on if it's armor, normal or shield that is hit. The defense value is put against the offense value of the weapon. This now enables a balance where some weapons can be better/worse against shield/armor/normal
- beams now use calculated armor values for damage reduction
Note: Beams now do damage calculations in a similat way as cannons in that the armor depth is calculated upon hitting a surface. The damage of the beam is reduced depending on armor thickness. Values have been added to config.
- General Balance Note: The current config values for the new balance additions are currently experimental and in no way final
Thank you for playing StarMade,
- The schine team
This will be the first of hopefully many Roadmap updates for the Universe Update.
The universe update requires a lot of groundwork, and while there have been already some things prepared and done over the last year, there is still a lot left as well as fitting the pieces together.
First of all, let me give you a rough outline of the timeline of the Universe update.
The update is going to be comprised of three Phases. Each phase primarily consists of similar types of updates.
- Phase #1: Library upgrades, basic system refactoring and basic system enhancements
- Phase #2: Engine upgrades and System optimization
- Phase #3: Universe redesign and content creation
In the following, I will talk about what has already been done, and what the next steps are.
Upgrade to Java 11
There are several reasons for this: Java 11 is is not only more optimized on its own, it also provides new functions for cleaner code, game optimizations, as well as better compatibility. Furthermore, it is future proof, especially since a lot of newer versions of 3rd party libraries the game uses rely on a newer version of java. Another nice thing about it is that the runtime provided can be customized, meaning that we can deploy the game with a much smaller customized package that only contains the modules needed to run the game (and of course you would never have to install java to play the game).
Upgrade other major libraries
Major libraries like hlsql (for databases) have been upgraded with new versions and the code had been refactored to support them.
Upgrade to Lwjgl 3
Not only does lwjgl provide a closer interface to the hardware, it also comes with GLFW:
a universal interface, which is an Open Source, multi-platform library for OpenGL, OpenGL ES and Vulkan development on the desktop. It provides a simple API for creating windows, contexts and surfaces, receiving input and events.
GLFW is written in C and has native support for Windows, macOS and many Unix-like systems using the X Window System, such as Linux and FreeBSD.
Most of the upgrade work was already done in the background over the last year, so this major undertaking didn’t take as much time.
One major part of upgrading was also implementing some functionality (like text render management) that the previous version of lwjgl provided, since the new version is a lot less bloated, but instead a lot more modular and slick.
Another major advantage of lwjgl is that it comes with a lot of add-on libraries that can potentially optimize starmade or create new features like a faster compression lib. Also, Vulcan is fully available to us now.
Furthermore, there is a full library for Steamworks, which will make the planned implementation of steam functions (join game, etc) a lot faster and easier.
Redesigning the Input System
Status: DONE <- We are here
Since GLFW uses a whole different way to interface with input (keyboard, mouse, joysticks), I took the opportunity to rewrite StarMade’s input system to make it a lot more versatile, more responsive, and a lot less bug prone. The main advantage from the update, however, is that now every action in the game can be assigned to any device and button (including mouse wheel). This means firing with the keyboard, or switching slots with a joystick is now easily possible. The system can also handle modifier keys (key combinations), as well as any number of alternative inputs for an action.
Rest of Phase #1
- Integrate new lwjgl3 libs
- Steamworks (join game, achievements, etc, workshop support probably later)
- GUI Scaling (100%, 150%, 200%) to cover everything from 1k to 4k
- Sound System (and a sound manager)
- There might be a few steps still in Phase #1. Time wise I hope to be done with this first phase somewhere in February.
Phase #2 is comprised of engine upgrades and system optimizations. There are a lot of plan to speed up block loading as well as block drawing by possibly a few magnitudes. This is necessary not only, but especially for the new planets.
This phase will also contain moving more things than ever to c++ code. I’m planning to move the physics to c++ fully, which will also natively support multiprocessor/threading.
Additionally, I’ll put the lighting calculations on c++ to speed up chunk graphics generation. With this, all processor heavy functions will be running in native c++, while maintaining the ease of project management that java provides.
On top of that, the graphics engine will be upgraded with a lot of functionality. Starting with simplifying a lot of block graphics data management, the main upgrade would be a new pipeline containing deferred rendering and dynamic lighting. Since dynamic lighting on its own never really works for voxel games of this scale, it will be built to be used in tandem with the baked lighting. This means that everything up close (or further away depending on the power of the graphics card) will be lit dynamically, meaning that light will look a lot better as well as affect other objects (cross entity lighting), while light in far away areas will be used the baked lighting as an approximation giving us optimal performance mixed with much better-looking visuals.
Another upgrade in phase #2 will be the content loader for sectors. If everything goes to plan, a sector switch will hopefully be virtually undetectable by a player.
This phase will also contain a rewrite of all the AI functions (might be moved to phase 3)
I will talk more in detail about Phase #2 when we get there.
TimeLine: This is in no way certain but I hope to finish with this phase in the first half of 2019.
The actual content phase. After phase #1 and #2, the engine should be in a great state. This phase includes redesigning the whole universe to a more condensed playing field filled with content and gameplay.
I can’t reveal too much about it yet since there are still some uncertain details that depend on the prior phases, but I will talk a lot more about more about these things in the updates during and after phase #2.
I hope that this will give you a nice overview of the current status of development. Everyone at Schine will continue to work at full power to make this the defining update to StarMade worthy of giving it the subtitle: StarMade 2020.
Thanks for playing StarMade,
- The Schine team
- Fixed factory setting on button/activator recipes
- Fixed physics bug that would lock the player character in place upon touching blocks with certain properties
new conditions/rules in dev build:
- Duration Active
- Under Attack
- Same Sector Contains
- Adj. Sector Contains
- Same System Contains
- Is In Fleet
- Is In Specific Faction
- Is AI Active
- Set Faction
- Activate AI
- Run Admin Command
- draw-block-connection is now a flag in the block config (and no longer active for small buttons)
- Several minor crash fixes
- Added recipes for small button/activator
- Fixed faction rank permission resetting (didn't happen in small tests anymore, but due to the nature of the bug happening more on servers with 5+ people on, I can't confirm the fix 100% yet)
- Fix for servers with custom config coming up (not being able to move astronaut, crashes and other various issues this bug caused)
- Fix for torch beam (didn't do enough damage to compensate for the fullhp encoding (has to do at least one byte of damage)
- Fixed possible crash when applying rules when entities apply changes at the same time
- Fixed rail logic so only adjacent activation and basic button activate (still any logic block can be connected with c+v) (fix of hotfix#1 didn't apply yet)
- Fixed crash in rule dialog (checkbox cleanup when the field wasn't initialized yet)
- Fixed error when spawning ships from blueprint items.
- Fixed missing icons for new blocks
- Fixed rail logic so only adjacent activation and basic button activate (still any logic block can be connected with c+v)
- Fixed manual turret aim to be off by default to fix AI mobs not firing their turrets
A new update is out. This will be the last major update before going into the heavy codebase changes of the Universe update. This will include updating lwjgl, java, and a lot of other things to their latest stable major releases, so a lot of refactoring has to be done. During this period until the universe update there will still be updates for the current versions along the way, but they will be mostly minor features, fixes and balance changes, as we will fully focus on the universe update from here.
As said in the latest dev build, chasing a balance that would satisfy all types of players is nearly impossible, so the vanilla game is going to focus on the game as I envision it, while at the same time creating features so players can play the game like they want it to. Not only does this save a lot of time in development in the long run it also removes a lot of issues with balance since in the end it is subjective to the type of player.
The rule system is essentially the beginning of an in-game modding system. It is built very general from the ground up and will be able to support any type of condition/action imaginable in the game. It comes with a full GUI in the main menu and in-game, which is capable of uploading and applying changes automatically while in-game.
You can also import and export any amount of rules. This enables server admins to quickly setup a certain type of server without having to do all the configuration themselves. They can download and import anything they need.
This update focused on getting the rule system to run. It also focused on making rules as performant as possible, which means that a rule is only checked if any parameter of a condition for the targeted object changes. It has a fair number of conditions and actions already present but there will be a LOT more to add along the way.
Eventually the rules system will possibly also be used to create quests and other gameplay elements, so it can already be considered a very small part of the universe update in a way.
Tracking & Marking
With rules there is now also a way for admins to track ships. Conditions can be used to place a tracker on ships. Admins can also now mark ships. This is mainly for admins to manually check ships that trigger their conditions.
New Admin commands:
- player_get_block_amount (fixed target inventory)
(all commands also work with *_UID)
New 3D Assets
Saber and Kupu finished some beautiful new 3D assets. There have been slight tweaks to existing model unwraps and their textures, and many new additions. New models include (from left to right):
- Grate Wedge (previous Grate Wedge has been renamed to Grate Slope)
- Metal Corner and Metal Bar
- Beacon and Colored Light Corners and Light Bars
- Light Rods
- Paint Cans and Resource Capsules
- Small Button and Small Activator
- Red, Orange, Green Consoles and Console Inner and Outer Corners
We also improved the block editor to make it a lot easier to import and create new 3D assets.
Additionally, some 3D assets now have different states when they are activated. We will expand that eventually to full animations on blocks for actions or just them being in idle state. This means you will be able to place animated modules on your ship.
*Paint Cans and Resource Capsules have had their default orientation rotated 90 degrees so they place vertically like the Pipe model. These will need to be replaced in old builds.*
3D Collision Meshes
3D assets now have full detail collision detection for astronauts as well as small enough projectiles/beams. This means you can now even shoot between the bars of grates.
Two major changes to balance are:
- Stabilization beam between reactor and stabilizers is removed
- Integrity is removed
However, with the rules system both of these functions can be restored.
We’re currently working with community members on the Quickfire discord (a community driven initiative to help balance StarMade) to bring the games balance into a good state. The first step of doing that was to fix some essential bugs as well as provide more config capabilities and mechanics.
Here are a few major and some minor changes to the balance already:
- Removed integrity (can be re-added by rules)
- Remove reactor stabilization beam (can be re-added by rules)
- increased cannon speed from 25x to 40x server max speed
- Increased armor bonus from 0.1 to 0.5 (bonus added on armor thickness)
- Halved vertical cursor recoil
- Beam damage reduction based on armor value of the block hit. 20% of armor value of block reduced per tick. (config option)
- 2.5% flat cannon damage reduced if armor if penetrated (config option)
- Config Option to add additional damage reduction based on armor thickness (currently unused)
There will likely be a lot more once the balance proposal is worked through. I have to disclaim though that I can’t promise that everything proposed will make it in.
- Rule System
- Full rule system with condition and actions to affect entities
- Cascading Condition groups
- Global rule assignment
- Individual rule assignment
- Full config export/import
- Export/import of individual rulesets
- Full GUI in ‘tools’ main menu
- Full GUI ingame with live synch feature
- New ingame file browser
- Added basic conditions (more to come)
- Added basic actions (more to come)
- Tracking feature
- fixed advanced build mode raytrace bug where an imprecise physics test would sometimes select the wrong blocks
- fixed physics bug where cannon shots would sometimes skip a chunk and do damage inside a structure
- 3D assets can now use any existing shape to be represented
- 3D assets can now use any arbitrary meshes as physics mesh to be represented
- 3D assets can now have activated state meshes
- Improved pipeline for mesh import with the block editor
- turrets will no longer be able to shoot through other docked entities (they won’t do damage to their docks)
- improved fleet formation by refreshing ship sizes more frequently and taking ship size more into account for spacing between ships
- Fixed Fleet not slowing down after move order (edited)
- Added delay between weapon switches of AI. delay only applies to within type (from a cannon computer to another cannon computer etc.)
- Added ai_weapon_switch_delay server config and admin command.
- added effect SHIELD_HOTSPOT_RECHARGE_MODE to set to rely on recharge instead of capacity
- added and exposed formula switching for power reactor
- player_get_block_amount fixed target inventory
- all commands with *_UID
- docked pull/push permission now saved in blueprint (edited)
- server.cfg option to allow factories on ships (ALLOW_FACTORY_ON_SHIPS)
- beacon light now is a flag in the block config
- logic block is now a flag in the block config
- updated loading screen tips to reflect game changes
- Refactoring work
- Increase missile tickrate to be more precise
- Added and adapted server config missile target prediction value to prevent missiles from going after a target’s previous position. Added admin command /missile_target_prediction <ticks>. Make sure no missiles are spawned when using or those missiles might get confused.
- Fixed race gates power usage
- Fixed ‘draw beams’ game option
- Self cleaning “waiting for for entities to dock” message for the case that the object isn’t in the db anymore. Reduced frequency of message for all other cases
- Can now load blueprints directly onto docks
- Server.cfg option to remove need to build shipyard structure (SHIPYARD_IGNORE_STRUCTURE)
- Reduced roll speed to balance between rotational axis (more turn speed balance will come)
- Orange and Blue Light Block color adjusted to differentiate from Yellow and Teal
- AI ships now auto charge stealth drive (should fix fleet cloak/uncloak/jam)
Balance (all points are non final and might still change)
- Removed integrity (can be re-added by rules)
- Remove reactor stabilization beam (can be re-added by rules)
- Balance: increased cannon speed from 25x to 40x server max speed
- Balance: Increased armor bonus from 0.1 to 0.5 (bonus added on armor thickness)
- Balance: Halved vertical cursor recoil
- Balance: Beam damage reduction based on armor value of the block hit. 20% of armor value of block reduced per tick. (config option)
- Balance: 2.5% flat cannon damage reduced if armor if penetrated (config option)
- Balance: Config Option to add additional damage reduction based on armor thickness (currently unused)
If you find any issue please let us know in our discord and we will get get right into hotfixing.
We wish you an awesome holidays and a very happy new year,
Thank you for playing StarMade,
- The Schine Team
Since the weapon update there have been a lot of smaller updates along the way which fixed several issues and added smaller features. For this one, we wanted to make a seperate release announcement for some bigger features as well as more bug fixes.
You now have have another tab on the left side of your advanced build mode. This can be used for quickly building up and managing a ship. It has all the previously missing information for weapons and other modules. There is a quick overview of what blocks you need and how many you have for each ship system. The build button will automatically put the block in your hotbar and select it to build. You can also choose to add blocks for an existing weapon, which selects the computer and puts the module into your hotbar.
In the future, this mode is going to be enhanced to be a non-intrusive tutorial for new players. When placing a ship core the buttons will light up to lead the players on what modules to build and how to build them. This eliminates the need to watch lengthy non-interactive videos or having to check on the wiki.
Build Mode Camera Drones
A long requested feature. Players can now be seen when in build mode. They will each fly in a small camera drone (made by Saber). These drones can also be seen if watching outside of build mode.
The drones come equipped with a flashlight (toggles on ‘P’ by default or in the display setting in adv. Build mode), as well as the option to display the name of the player below the drone.
Adjustable Cockpit view
Another long requested feature. It is now possible to adjust the view of your cockpit blocks individually. Just press ‘P’ while in a cockpit in flight mode to unlock the camera and freely move it. Press ‘P’ again to lock the new view in place. This mode is fully persistent, meaning it will not only save between sessions and apply for other players that fly your ship, it will also save within the blueprint.
Keep in mind that this mode is currently still a bit experimental, as there are some minor issues and more features coming for this. One of those features will be delayed camera movement to make flying a lot more fun all around, as well as HUD updates. There will be fixes to handle differently orientated cockpit blocks better as well as other fixes for the “aim at” check.
Block Editor Model Tab
The block editor has been cleaned up to make block editing a lot faster and easier.
An all new tab has been added for the Block Editor. This tab contains all information and management for the models in the game. This will speed up development and integration of models considerably in the future, especially for the universe update.
Kupu completed specular mapping, made a unique texture for the Area Trigger and the Cargo Space, Green Forcefield, as well as the Green Cascade deco block.
Logic will now only transmit the end state of the blocks. Fast logic clocks caused over 500 state changes per update, which was not only a performance drain but also bandwidth.
To compensate for the necessity of having fast clocks, modules now stay active when a logic block is connected that was switched to active. Currently the activity will reset if the entity unloads, in which case the logic block would have to be turned off and on again. Persistence for that will be added in the next update.
Pin AI Targets
Pilots can now specify (pin) targets for AI targeting. When having a target selected, press ‘x’ in flight mode to specify this target for AI fire, while the pilot can select a different entity.
The more important bugfixes will be listed first.
Possible Fix for missing/reverted chunks
This bug seems to be finally fixed (can’t call it 100% fixed yet without long term experience on production, since we had no way of reproducing it). The bug was possibly caused by save events marking chunks as not validated on the server, but at the same time not queuing them for validation cause of another event at the same time. This caused those chunks to not be saved in that session.
Fixed all crashes due to malformed translation Strings
If there was an error in a translation string format (e.g. using malformed arguments), the game would previously crash. These bugs would be fairly hard to track down since they would only happen in that specific language. The system has now been updated to compensate for those bugs and automatically replace the string with an error.
Fixed pirate/tg spawning when attacking a station
Fix for missing Area Trigger icon, + icons for new blocks.
Custom texture for cargo block in build mode
Fix for cargo draw issues (on transparent blocks)
Torch beam damage upped from 1 to 4
Fixed nullpointer on UI when active reactor changes
Fixed bug that would prevent newly spawned planets and asteroids from being saved when edited (existing ones had no problem).
Removed popup when opening storage
Added more info in the build mode entity info
Temporary shield disable now affects whole structure incl. all docks, instead of just the entity it was triggered on.
Fixed crash after setting the "Pull up to" value of Cargo to 0.
Turn rate config values exposed and explained in blockBehaviorConfig
Fixed custom block texture handling
Fixes map drawing
Fixes crash when changing certain graphics settings ingame.
Fixes shield message spam
Fixed client crash when shipyard anchor was removed when a design was loaded
We will release further fix and cleanup updates while we are working on the universe update. If you have an issue a request, please join the discord. We’re always ready to add smaller features as well as handle bugs when I get the necessary information.
Thank you for playing StarMade,
The Schine Team
Greetings citizens, ~
Fixes #7: version [0.201.142]
- Added [shieldPercent] to display module
- Player is now being notified when shield recharge is negative due to shield upkeep
- Full chamber tree can now be opened with a double click on the chamber icon/tab
- Fixed that beams would in rare situations still do one tick of damage through shields
- New and fixed admin commands:
- Fixed /player_get_inventory
- Fixed /blueprint_set_owner
- Fixed /player_get_block_amount
- Renamed /list_ships to /list_blueprints
- Added /list_blueprints_by_owner [owner],
- Added /list_blueprints_verbose with extra info and /list_blueprints_by_owner_verbose [owner]
- Added owner, total(incl childs) block count and total(incl childs) dimension to /blueprint_info
- Added /destroy_uid_only_docked
- Added /player_suspend_faction and /player_unsuspend_faction to temporarily remove a player from a faction and put them back with the same settings afterwards
- Added additional info to /list_factions
- Added /player_set_spawn_to [name] [secX] [secY] [secZ] [localX] [localY] [localZ] to set a respawn point for a player to any position in the universe
- Added /player_get_spawn [name] returns the absolute or relative spawn point(when spawning on a ship)
- Added /put_player_into_entity_uid [name] [UID] and fixed other issues surrounding automatic entity attachment and detachment
- fixed language bug in german language causing the default server.cfg to not parse correctly
Fixes #6: version [0.201.138]
- FIXED: Sniper Rifle did damage through shield
- FIXED: No missile damage
- Shader fixes
- Beam damage changes and fixes (more to come)
- Repair beam fixes
(more fixes are on the way)
Fixes #5: version [0.201.133]
- FIXED: Frambuffer init failure results in crash
- FIXED: torch did not ignore shields
- FIXED: Shield bubble drawing on docked entities is confusing
- IMPLEMENT: mine ammo for all mines (delayed removal after depletion)
- FIXED: arming mines with right click not functional
- FIXED: logic controlled modules on client
- IMPLEMENT: variable amounts of logfiles capability (settings.cfg)
- FIXED: mine strength not calculated correctly
- FIXED: rail docker not usable after combat
- FIXED: repair beam should not be working on asteroids
- FIXED: shops being damaged
clear_overheating_sector x y z (clear overheating entities in a loaded sector)
faction_set_entity_rank rank: set faction rank (numeral -2=unset, -1=personal, 0, 1, 2, 3, 4=founder) to an entity
player_get_inventory player: lists a player's inventory
player_get_block_amount player type: lists amount of blocks a player has of a block type
Hotfix-Followup #4: version [0.201.130]: Fixed two server crashes related to mines. Fixed some client crashes. Currently working to fix further crashes and fix ship rotation desynch issues. (Note: Cleanup update will contain a GUI update which will make it a lot easier to see all the statistics of the weapons you build)
Hotfix-Followup #3: version [0.201.129]: Fixed remaining issues with block desynch. Fixed power comsumption of groups with different sizes belonging to the same block computer. Fixed beam issues.
Hotfix-Followup #2: version [0.201.127]: Fixed block desynch issue from mini freeze fix. Fixed beams doing damage through shields for one tick when firing while transitioning sectors.
Config changes (Chamber Capacity):
- stealth jammer chamber -> 15% to 12.5%
- stealth cloak chamber -> 35% -> 20%
Hotfix-Followup #1: build [20180710_220426]: Fixed shaders crash Intel users. Fixed another big source of mini freezes (when blocks are being updated through logic/battle/building)
After over 100 dev builds, the weapons update is finally here. It might be even bigger in scope than the power update. It not only introduces a lot of new features, it also has complete redesigns and code reworks of parts of the codebase. It also comes with fixes for a lot of the more serious bugs as well as stability updates and lot of minor fixes and upgrades.
As always, make sure to do a full backup on your world and blueprints. We tested both fresh installation and upgrade multiple times, and couldn’t find any problem, but there is always a rest risk in updates this big.
The weapon handling, projectile, and block processing code has been completely rewritten, as well as parts of the missile system, and a lot of other backend systems to improve performance and stability. This also allows for a lot faster development for these systems from here on out.
In context of the main focus of this update we also improved combat stability and performance a lot, as well as hopefully fixed most of the nasty bugs that were affecting ship combat in the last release.
There might still be some issues with some systems losing server synch temporarily under load, but those will be addressed in a follow-up cleanup update.
We set out to do this update mainly to make combat and ship battles more interesting and fun. On the backend, this also gave us a chance to completely redesign the code of weapons and other usable modules in the game. A new code design was already partly set up with the power update, and this updates completes it.
To make a more complete package, new features and improvements have been added all across the board.
Weapon & Tool redesign
The goal is to make weapons and their combination a lot more unique, while still being a viable option. Some weapons might be easier to use than most, but others could have a much higher pay off when used properly. As each weapon combination has clear positives and negatives, it is up to you to decide what weapons to make.
We also wanted to give weapons and combat in general a better feeling. This incorporates a broad spectrum of features including the HUD, recoil, explosions, physical force, damage, armor, and many more.
While we changed and added on existing weapons, we did remove the damage pulse entirely as it had no real purpose. It also reduced the amount of combinations possible which allows us to concentrate more on the remaining ones.
Acid Damage model
Acid Damage is the new damage model used by Cannons and Beams to increase block damage without affecting performance. In our tests, this system allowed us to get 90-95% of the original damage to be applied as block damage, giving us the possibility of one projectile destroying thousands of blocks without running into performance problems.
This is achieved by propagating damage outwards, block by block, starting from an origin block.
The propagation speed can be adjusted to move faster or slower depending on the processing power and bandwidth of the server. Several bandwidth optimizations have been made to make the information on removed blocks as small as possible. As a result, even large amounts of blocks get processed quickly without any hiccups.
We can change its behavior while this is propagating as well, allowing for unique damage patterns to be implemented.
Cannons are now mainly a high penetration weapon, capable of punching through thin armor and leaving a lot of damage in its wake.
Like before, each projectile has a penetration depth based on its damage. This can range from 1 to 200+ blocks. Each block in this penetration line, acts as the starting point for Acid Damage to start from. The damage of the entire projectile is then distributed accordingly to end up with the appropriate damage shape.
A general change to cannons is that all projectiles are now considerably faster, which will make battles at higher speeds a lot easier.
Using cannons with too much damage can cause the projectiles to overpenetrate. This happens only when targets have little to no armor, compared to your shot. If this happens, then the penetration depth is stretched before the original damage is distributed on it. This may result in even more system damage...or it may come out of the back of the target and end up wasting most of its damage.
By putting down blocks next to your weapon’s output, you can increases its projectile width. On impact, this will cause more damage to be redirected towards the front, basically shrinking your damage pattern and increasing its width. This can be used to counter any over penetration, or to destroy more superficial blocks if needed.
Recoil + Impact force
Every Cannon projectile applies a force on both the shooter and the target. The force and amount of movement created, solely depends on the weapon damage.
The physical recoil on your ship is in the opposite way of the firing direction, the impact force on your target is in line with the firing direction as you would expect.
There is also something we call ‘cursor’ recoil, meant to give a better feeling to cannons and reduce its accuracy slightly when fired manually. It’s kept at a manageable level, and scales properly with your fire rate and damage. There’s also a maximum cursor recoil threshold in place to make sure even the biggest of weapons don’t throw your aim around too much.
The core idea of each combination is mostly unchanged, but they behave in different ways. It’s possible we still add or change parts of them depending on feedback, but the overall role of each support should stay the same.
Default: An all-around decent cannon, doesn’t excel at anything
Cannon + Cannon: Fast firing machine gun with fast projectiles. It uses the Cone: Wide-> Narrow damage shape.
Cannon + Missile: Charge cannon with left click to charge, release to fire. The longer it is charged, the better the efficiency and damage of that shot. It also uses the Cone: Wide-> Narrow damage shape.
Cannon + Beam: A slow firing artillery cannon with a narrow -> wide cone damage shape. Even when over penetrating, it will be relatively efficient, but it is hard to hit.
We’ve changed the Damage <-> Power consumed ratio to be different for each combination. It allows us to balance the high risk weapons to reliable damage dealing ones. A slow firing cannon is always more efficient, as a miss or a bad hit is a huge waste of time and power.
Each combination also has a default sniper zoom mode, toggled with right click. It ranges from 2x to 4x and greatly enhances accuracy on long range targets.
Some examples of the damage left by only a few projectiles:
~ High damage projectile:
~ Multiple medium damage projectiles:
Damage Beams are mostly about doing surface damage and being easier to use. Beams only apply Acid damage on the block they’re hitting, damage will most likely not reach deep within the target unless you focus fire on a particular spot. The only exception to this rule is the Beam support version, where it does penetrate all the way.
We’ve improved the functionality of Beams to allow for that. Some versions are capable of traveling along its target without you firing or aiming it again, they’ll deal decent damage as well but may not necessarily stay where you want them to be.
Damage over Distance
Unlike Missiles or Cannons, beams lose damage with the distance from target. At maximum range, it goes down to only 40% of its original damage. This increases the closer you get, till it reaches the original value at about 400 meters or less. This can vary depending on the combination and allows us to better balance a hitscan weapon.
Default: Latch on beam that breaks off when it has no direct line of sight with the current block.
Beam + Cannon: Aimable beam with short burst time and cooldown
Beam + Missile: Arc beam with a shorter range but doesn’t break when there is no direct line of sight anymore. Has a long burst time.
Beam + Beam: Penetrating beam that can’t be aimed with your cursor. The damage of the beam is distributed equally over the blocks in the penetration line. Requires to be charged before firing and stops your shields from blocking damage while you are charging.
The repair beam or astrotech beam is now capable of repairing and replacing killed blocks. The reason this has taken longer is several problems to optimize this system for large scale, as well as handling the logic of connections. At the moment, you can only replace the blocks in order (as if you pressed “undo”), but out of order repairing will be added as a follow up.
If you connect any amount of storages to your beam computer, it will be using those for repairs. If there is no storage attached, the blocks will be taken out of the pilot’s personal inventory (if possible).
Keep in mind that for balance reasons you currently cannot repair during battle.
The new tractor beam replaces the push and pull beam of the previous release. This weapon is able to hold another entity in place. It can also move with you as you either rotate or move yourself while still firing the beam. It comes with a built-in mode change so you can push the target further out or pull it in. You can change the firing mode by pressing left alt (also now indicated in the context help).
Armor has been completely redesigned as well. There is no longer an abstract “Armor HP”. Armor now will count where it is and how thick it is, you can see this in build mode as well when looking at any armor block. Here is how it works:
When a bullet hits armor it checks how many armor blocks come behind that block in its path.
The count of armor will stop at any non armor block or air. That count defined the “armor depth”
Each armor block now has an armor rating that will get added up (with possible additional bonuses on thicker armor)
The resulting total armor value along the armor depth is then compared with the bullet’s damage
Is the armor value lower than the bullet’s damage, the bullet will travel on as normal and destroy the armor blocks along its way
Is the armor value higher than the bullet’s damage, the bullet will only do acid damage on the first block and stops completely
Is the armor value much higher than the bullet’s damage, acid damage is not even applied and only a single block gets normal damage and stops completely
This will be repeated for every continuous plate of armor the bullet goes through in a ship, so inner armor a very viable option
This means, that a sufficient armor depth can stop any shot, and it also means that it depends on the angle of the shot, where that armor is, and what type of armor was used. These values mainly affect the penetration of cannon projectiles although beam acid damage gets affected by the armor rating as well.
In addition, the HP of Armor has been increased to make it capable to absorb more damage.
You can check your armor rating in build mode by just looking at your armor while having any armor block selected on your hotbar. It will tell you exactly how deep and how much armor the ship has from the angle you are looking from. Note that the armor rating does not scale linear with thickness but has increased values for every added layer in addition to the flat amount of the block itself..
To add another layer to using missiles, we added a Missile Capacity system that will also prevent you from spamming them. By placing missile capacity blocks on your entity, you increase the maximum amount of missiles to be stored. The missiles are reloaded in bulk, as soon as you fire a missile, the reload starts. When the timer runs out, all the missing missiles are filled up again.
For AI controlled ships, the reload only starts when they run out of missiles, this helps control the amount of missiles flying around.
In addition, you require additional power for the missile capacity blocks. This should normally not be a concern unless you’re deliberately trying to store too many missiles for your ship’s size.
Missile Shield + Point Defense Prioritization
Each missile has its own its shield, protecting it from Point Defence turrets. The strength of this shield scales with the missile’s damage and should also encourage firing more high damage missiles than trying to flood the field with low damage decoys.
We’ve also implemented proper anti-missile prioritization. You can set any of your AI to fire at a certain category first:
High damage missiles
Low damage missiles
Random (Closest First (old system))
Default: Fast non tracking missiles
Missile + Cannons: Heat-seeking swarming missiles
Missile + Beam: Lock-On Missiles
Missile + Missile: A bomb with no self-propulsion and uses the ship’s velocity as its own. The bomb will ignore shields and does friendly fire as well. It will arm itself after several seconds, it won’t detonate (dud) if it isn’t armed yet, so you can’t fire it at point-blank range of your target.
Changing firing mode from focused to unfocused has been changed to a keyboard toggle for all weapons (default: left alt). We added an additional mode for cannons and missiles as well: Volley fire. This mode will take the time to reload the weapon, and divide it by the amount of groups connected to that computer. When firing, the groups will fire one after another.
Volley fire can also be set in the Bobby-AI module for turrets and drones to use.
New HUD graphics
The HUD graphics have been improved to improve usability and distinction between objects and improve the general look.
All indicators now also have been moved to the center of mass of entities. They will still be on the core if you are aligned or in gravity of an entity.
Entities will no longer undock when their rail or rail docker is destroyed. However, until those are replaced at the exact position, or manually undocked and docked on a different one, the dock will not receive any power from the mothership.
This will greatly help with lag in larger ship battles, where the undocking of turrets and other docks was one of the biggest parts of lag-causing elements.
Improved graphical effects
The graphical effects for cannons, beams and missiles have been improved. Also more and better explosions have been added.
Also an all new LoD system has been implemented which is currently in use for the mines to be able to have a lot of them in one sector without problems. The system is written in a way that it can be used for a lot of other things in the future.
Kupu has done an exceptional job in upgrading the texture to be more crisp than ever before, fixing many previous tiling issues and colour inconsistencies.
Cannons and missiles now also have a lead indicator based on the selected weapon’s projectile speed. Currently the indicator is based on the target’s center of mass.
The old effect computers have all been removed as most don’t have a purpose anymore. We’ve replaced it with a 3 damage type system with base values for each weapon type:
You can adjust the basic damage distribution of each weapon by linking it to the specific effect computer you want it to have.
There are also defensive reactor chambers to strengthen your ship/structure against these damage types respectively.
Any damage in the game is now a composition out of these three effects. For example, a sun will now do heat damage. We plan to further expand on this system for the universe update.
Sector Size Weapon Range independency
To make it easier to customize the game for bigger sectors, we added a seperate value in the ServerConfig to set the base range for weapons independently from the sector size. This value will be used as reference for all range config values in the block behavior config. This value can also be set on the fly with an admin command (/set_weapon_range_reference).
If the value is set to 1, all config values will be interpreted as fixed block units (meters).
The ability to place down stationary mines was added. This feature comes with an all new LoD system that will be reused for other model based things in the future. The Minelayer works like a tiny mobile shipyard, with the Minelayer connected to a Mine core and a storage chest to pull the mine blocks from.
Next to the mine core you can place up to 6 mine-specific block modifications. The mine core block plus its modifications are used as a “blueprint” for the mine’s capabilities, while the constructed and deployed mine itself is not a block but a small 3D model.
Constructing and laying a mine requires blocks from either the pilot’s inventory, or its linked storage. All newly deployed mines are inactive. You can activate them by right clicking, or via the radial ship menu for more options.
Mines can be destroyed by being shot, or simply physically running into them (which may not always be the best idea).
Mines can also be laid via logic by connecting a logic block to the mine layer.
The following mine-types are available:
Cannon Mine: This mine fires cannon projectiles when in range
Missile Mine: This mine fires heat-seeking missiles when in range.
Proximity Mine: The classic mine. Once a targets gets within range, it activates the mine and will follow the entity that triggered it, explodes on impact. Once triggered, it is used up.
The following Mine Modifications are available:
Cannon Mine Mod: turns mine into cannon mine
Missile Mine Mod: turns mine into missile mine
Proximity Mine Mod: turns mine into proximity mine
Strength Mod: increases mine damage
Personal AI Mod: mine will not attack the one that laid it down
Friend AI Mod: mine will only attack the enemies of the person who laid it down
Stealth Mod: with each additional mod the mine will gain one point in stealth. Depending on recon strength while scanning the mine will be invisible at distance (distance depends on the difference of stealth vs recon)
Storage chest blocks (the controllers) don’t get physically destroyed anymore unless they’re empty or have no linked used volume remaining.
This block (or group of blocks) is destroyed on passthrough if the connected storage has no remaining items. If the storage has remaining items, the damage is done to the stored items themselves, meaning that items are being destroying emptying the storage. HP are irrelevant to these blocks as every shot will do passthrough damage. The shot will not lose any strength and continue. The storage will lose items on every storage block the shot passes through.
The storage block has the same mechanics as the cargo blocks.
Warpgate, racegate, activation-gate, doors, factories, cargo, logic connections, all rail connections, mass enhancer) transporter, sensors and shop will now completely ignore integrity.
Integrity will no longer lower while a ship is in battle. When a system block is destroyed, integrity will not update for 5 minutes and only then update itself to the new correct value. This timer resets every time a system block gets taken out.
This means any ship is equally viable in terms of integrity, as long as its integrity is positive when going into battle. It will also help with lag from explosions and the snowball effect once a ship dips into negative integrity.
The AI now uses a better system to gauge their weapon range. Also their aiming has been fixed and improved.
Shields now always regenerate over time again and when under fire only lose regeneration when the shield HP goes down. When not under fire, shields will always regenerate at full speed. Any shield starts in its strongest configuration and can be weakened through high damage weapons if it is a recharge focused shield. Or by a steady stream of small weapon fire if it is a capacity focused shield. The config was changed to allow for that and you may end up with a disportionate amount of regeneration vs capacity with your current builds. Make sure to double check if your regeneration is still positive
Lancake has updated the old Isanths’ systems to use new power and the new weapons. Be aware that these ships pack quite a punch now.
The new model will automatically replace the blueprints of the old ones upon start, so if you have modified and overwritten those blueprints (with the exact same name), be sure to make a backup before running the new version.
All block HP are being migrated to a new system that supports any amount of HP. While at the same time not increasing amount of data used for HP for memory reasons, the only difference would be that a block with max HP higher than 127 will needs a minimum damage dealt to it for its HP to decrease.
The minimum amount of damage is x/127. This means that you need at least ~8 damage to hurt a block with 1000 Max Hitpoints.
New Admin Commands
/bp_info [BluePrintName] (populates information about a specific blueprint)
/delete_bp [BluePrintName] (deletes a specific blueprint)
/bp_setOwner [BluePrintName] [PlayerName] (sets a blueprint to be owned by a specific person)
/clear_mines_here (clears mines in current sector)
/clear_mines_sector [X] [Y] [Z] (clears mines in specific sector)
/reset_repair_delay (Resets repair delay on selected/entered vessel)
/reset_integrity_delay (Resets integrity battle delay on selected/entered vessel)
/rail_reset (Resets rail (undock/redock) rail of only the selected or entered entity)
/rail_reset_all (Resets rail (undock/redock) rail of all (sub)entities of selected or entered entity)
/set_weapon_range_reference (Sets the weapon reference range distance in meters, which the config values are multiplied with (default is sector distance))
/faction_set_entity_uid [UID] [FactionID] (sets faction of an entity by UID)
All entity info commands have been updated with more info. Also the sector_chmod command has been updated for all sector mods.
The rail commands can be used in case there is still some sort of misalignment or to fix old blueprints quickly.
The list in https://starmadedock.net/threads/admin-commands.1283/ has been updated accordingly
Several optimizations have been made to the game.
The rewrite of the weapon and general usable module system made the amount of steps involved in pretty much everything weapon and module related a lot less. Not only does this result in much cleaner code, but also a general speed up.
The update system for modules is now on-demand, which means the system will not bother to even check if the blocks of a group changed as long as there hasn’t been an actual notification for that. This means that the general idle time for all entities has been cut down significantly. This is very noticable in sectors with a lot of entities and docks.
Block processing has been optimized to minimize the amount of lookups by grouping all changes by chunk. This also cuts down on synchronization time between threads and cleans up the code considerably in that section. This makes block processing in general a lot quicker, especially during battles.
Block change recording has been completely rewritten to minimize memory usage and serialization size.
Beams have been optimized to work a lot faster.
Removed some bottlenecks that were occurring in big fights.
Thread spool up to remove short freezes after starting the game, e.g. in build mode.
A ton of smaller optimizations across the board.
Memory optimizations for the particle systems.
Log cleanup during ship battles
(Effective) HP: 1000 → 2000
Armor Rating: 1000
(Effective) HP: 250 → 800
Armor Rating: 750
Basic Armor (previously Hull)
(Effective) HP: 75 → 250
Armor Rating: 500
1 Metal Mesh
1 Crystal Composite
1 Fertikeen Capsule
Shield Capacity / Block: 400 → 250
Shield Recharge / Block: 20 → 25
Default Capacity: 200 → 0
Default Radius: 25 → 10
Shield Local Radius Multiplier: 10 → 7.5
Shield Upkeep % of HP / sec: 0.5% → 2%
Shield Power consumption resting / Block: 1 → 0.4
Shield Power consumption charging / Block: 1 → 0.8
Shield Under Fire Time: 30 seconds since last shot
Shield Minimum Recharge: 20%
Shield Minimum Recharged reached at: 50% Capacity
Minimum Time: 60 seconds
Maximum Time: 600 seconds
Time added / Block: 0.001 seconds
Max Cooldown when hit: 60 → 15 seconds
Power Regen in Cooldown: 20% → 25%
Chamber blocks needed per reactor block: 0.5 → 0.25
Start Value: 200 → 400
Collection Integrity Update delay under fire: 300 seconds
Layable Mine Distance: 10 meters
Cannon Damage per Strength: 1 000
Cannon reload: 0.5 seconds
Cannon speed: 2 x universe speed
Missile Damage per Strength: 10 000
Missile Reload: 10 seconds
Missile Speed: 1.5 x universe speed
Proximity Damage per Strength: 10 000 (bypasses shields)
Proximity Speed: 0.5 x universe speed
Moveable mass per module: 5 mass
Maximum Force : 10 x Target mass
Power Consumption resting / Block: 10
Power Consumption charging / Block: 50
Distance: 400 meters
Salvage ‘damage’ / Tick: 10 → 25
Power Consumption resting / Block: 3 → 5
Power Consumption charging / Block: 15 → 25
Ticks / second: 40 → 16
Blocks / Tick / Module: 1
Power Consumption resting / Block: 5
Power Consumption charging / Block: 25
Ticks / second: 20
Repair out of Combat delay: 60 seconds
T1496: Fixed visual glitches for some block icons
T2392: Fixed missiles not targeting systems
T2796: Fixed tooltip displaying on block preview rotation arrows
T2838: Fixed beam texture staying after the shooter overheats
T2849: Fixed shields not always providing protection against weapons
T2941: Fixed stabilizers dropping to 0.0 - 0.1% during block placement/removal
T2942: Fixed crash caused by undoing a large amount of blocks
T2973: Fixed issue where thrust does not consume the right amount of power
T2997: Fixed crash caused by linking mass linking logic or other similar blocks with Shift + V
T3032: Fixed Warp gate distance not displaying correctly
T3037: Fixed stealth strength not increasing with chamber strength lvl 3
Several fixes related to weapon config values
Fixed shipyards (several issues) and added shipyard logs
Fixed turret aim and rotation not working correctly/stopping after a while
Fixed sudden rail misalignment
Fixed horizontal turrets
Fixed chunk corruption (couldn’t confirm 100%. If there is still a case of that, please report)
Fixed missiles not working on sector borders
Fixed slot desync causing players to see wrong weapons being fired at them
Fixed lag compensation causing entities to not rotate correctly for clients (hitting a ship with damage appearing elsewhere & desync)
Stalling missiles now timeout to not cause performance hit (will be fully fixed in follow up)
Next is going to be a bug-fixing and cleanup round. We will be trying to make the game as stable as possible for the period of the universe update development. Other changes might include reactor chamber balance changes and small changes to weapons based on feedback.
We already started with some aspects of the universe update in the background, and we will now focus more and more on that.
We can’t promise a universe related dev build for a while, but there might be a few highly experimental test builds before that.
Thank you for playing StarMade,
The Schine Team