After The Collapse 0.7.1 Released

After The Collapse 0.7.1 has just been released. This first major patch is heavily re-balancing the early game and tech tree while redesigning the map, adding genetic(ish) animal breeding, and overhauling the way expeditions are handled. This article will detail the major changes. As usual, for a complete list, refer to the changelog at the end of this article. I however, strongly suggest regular users to read this article. Read More …

0.7 Branch Update : A Man’s Best Friend

Here is the first content update for our 0.7 branch, introducing pets, social mechanics, a new in-game mod browser, artifacts, and plenty more.

As usual, I’m only going to go over the major features and changes. There are plenty more modding, UI and balance improvements you can find in the full change-log at the bottom.

Pets

The idea with this 0.7x branch is to add neutral critters to the map, some moving in herd, for the player to tame or hunt. Both in build mode, and on the world map.

As a the first and biggest step in the right direction, we can now breed and adopt dogs. Pets will defend their owner and provide a flat bonus to their happiness. Their death causes a temporary debuff to their owner. Dogs without owners will hang out in a pasture and can be butchered.

Dogs can be found during expeditions, both during travel and in specific locations (bars). The animal trader also sell them. Pets, like cattle, die of old age, can reproduce and be butchered.

The animal info menu is now similar to the one used with humans. And in this menu you can give them a new owner.

Animal Food

Instead of wheat, all settlement creatures eat animal food now, dogs included. To make the transition go smoothly, wheat farms produce “animal food” directly for now. You can also make more by cooking meat. It is also a proper food item, instead of an ingredient.

Your settlers won’t eat animal food, though. This is a first step toward having diets for specific groups of settlers or animals.

Happiness and Personality Traits

Happiness changes are gradual instead of instant. People gain and loss points at a rate determined by their new personality trait. Other traits have been redesigned to make use of that system. The mood of your survivors should be much less erratic. Settlers also spawn with a new small list of traits they like and dislike.
Humans also start with base stats much closer to average now. As such, traits, mental attributes and jobs have a much more meaningful impact on a new survivor’s abilities. In turn, it removes many cases where a settlers with a trait like Strong would still have very sub-par strength.
As you can see, the character and mood panels got a face-lift to illustrate the new system.

Making Friends

Settlers will now talk and bond with each other as illustrated here with the new speech bubbles.

While they appear simultaneously, the bubbles show one of the different outcomes of the discussion, taking happiness, relation with other settler, social stats, likes & dislikes, and some dice rolls, into account. Generally, the more blue ? and ! speech bubbles, the better.

Having friends gives small happiness buffs, but if one dies, his friends will mourn for a few days (slower, sad). Of course, enemies provide a small debuff. Occasionally, two settlers who dislike each other may start brawling. It’s a non lethal (normally) duel with punches only, its duration may vary. Once the fight is over, they’ll hate each other less.

A “Relation” tab has been added to the settler info menu to keep track of each settler’s relationships, pets included.

Artifacts

Settlers can equip new rare and powerful items in their new equipment slot. They can be acquired when raiding mutated nests and during scavenging runs (rare). There’s only a few for now, but more will be added along the way.

Map and User Interface

This is still a bit experimental, but the world map no longer pauses the game. You still use the keyboard shortcuts to control time in map mode. As such, you can see your expeditions moving in real time. Still from the world map, you can open diplomatic channels with a faction by clicking on its flag. The idea in the long run is to also have expedition management directly on the map screen.

Mods and Steam Workshop

Thanks to Alex, you can now share your saves on the Steam Workshop to your friends and to the community at large. Workshop mods can now be listed and subbed directly from the game. There’s a new modding doc available here. And we have a new in-game mod manager as pictured below.

Speaking of mods, I should point out the ones made by Xen. Lots of good content in there! :steamhappy:

Save Compatibility

Start a new game. As with all major milestone updates, save files aren’t compatible with previous versions.

Release Notes

This 0.7.0 version is by no mean perfect, and you’ll probably find some issues left & right which i’ll address through hot-patches, as usual. The very small “fixed” list in the changelog is still a testament to our progress over the last few months: ATC works, generally ™.

My apologies for taking so long to publish 0.7, it should have been completed much earlier this month, but I also had to take care of older family members due to the covid19 quarantine. As such, it’s now clear that we won’t reach 1.0 before end of Q2 2020. It doesn’t mean much, as i plan to continue coding past 1.0, but it’s only fair to tell you.

Also note, that we’ll be increasing the game’s cost by $1 somewhere near the end of the 0.7 branch, you’ll be warned in advance, and it’ll be coupled with a discount when applied.

Plans for future 0.7.x updates

Prisoner management is the big thing. Basically a way to capture, sell, and put to work prisoners. The new non-lethal combat, social features and pet system are an introduction to this.

I would like to add migratory herds to the world map as well. They could be hunted by expeditions and serve as event generators when entering in contact with the base, productions centers or expeditions. It could in turn be used to replace the random enemy raids and migration events by something a bit more natural.

Give more reasons to grow in population, with settlement laws to be enacted at each milestone. A mayor’s office for the colony’s leader would be nice as well. In a more distant future it’d help adding elections and a political system in general.

The last major arc is an improved medical system. But it might get delayed or swapped with the following as I’m not sure I like the idea of dealing with this topic in the current situation. It would feel a bit ghoulish.

Instead, preset scenarios and generally speaking a more user friendly new game menu. Coupled with a basic in-game mission system to provide guidance in a less intrusive way than with popups, and a general makeover of the map/expedition/diplo UI stuff which is way too disjointed at the moment.

Full Changelog

  • Balance: Merged “consumable” item category into “drinks” (it was only used for dirty water, use depot filters when needed instead)
  • Balance: Mood changes are now gradual and vary from a settler to another
  • Balance: Joyful & Depressed are no longer timed and will always trigger whenever a settler’s mood is over 85 or below 15
  • Balance: Traders have more items in stock
  • Balance: Humans spawn with roughly average base stats, making traits and professions more meaningful
  • Changes: Animals eat animal food (categorised as food) instead of wheat (categorised as ingredient)
  • Changes: Wheat farms produce animal food, removed wheat from ingredients
  • Content: Added recipe to produce animal food from meat at basic kitchen
  • Content: Added new traits illustrating the new mood system and edited existing ones
  • Content: New equipment slot for settlers (backpack/artifacts)
  • Content: Added several powerful items and artifacts to the loot and trade tables (your settlers can equip them in the new slot)
  • Content: New artifact trader event (very rare, late game, event)
  • Content: Settlers can now form relations with each other
  • Content: Settlers can chat with each other, modifying their mood and relations
  • Content: The death of a friend will cause a settler to mourn for a few days (bad morale, slow speed, low social)
  • Content: Having friends will increase a settler’s mood while having foes will decrease it
  • Content: Settlers who hate each other may occasionally brawl (which will partially reset their relation)
  • Content: Pet dogs for your settlers to adopt and breed (or eat, you maniacs)
  • Content: Pets provide basic help in combat and a slight happiness boost to their owners
  • Content: The death of a pet will render their owner sad for a while
  • Content: Ability to share your savegames on the Steam Workshop (by Alex) (Steam Only)
  • Content: Pets and cattle regen health when eating.
  • Content: Claimed production centers can still be explored for resources now
  • Modding: New ingame workshop mod manager (by Alex)
  • Modding: New modding api documentation, online version here: https://modding.anarkisgaming.com (by Alex)
  • Modding: Ability to set recipes with varying quantity produced (see data/recipes/_example.txt file)
  • Modding: Factories can now properly understand recipes with multiple output (they sorta did already, but items would not always end up where they should)
  • Modding: Added several mood/relation modifiers to traits
  • Modding: Added “AI” = PetAI to npc files (they’ll need a properly set race for the agents to be considered properly ownable pets and be of the animal category)
  • Modding: Traits have the new DamageThreshold field (add/remove flat incoming damage in combat)
  • Modding: Traits have the new MeleeDamageModifier and RangedDamageModifier fields (add/remove flat outgoing damage in combat)
  • Modding: Added ability to toggle developer mode and menus (see devmode.txt in game’s folder)
  • Modding: Added _example.txt files to data/npc, data/racedata, data/recipes and data/traits to start documenting stuff a bit (more will come)
  • Modding: Animal fodder consumable must have the “Fodder” tag attributed otherwise settlers will eat them too.
  • Modding: UI graphical elements can be retextured (by Alex)
  • Modding: Detection and warning messages for outdated/broken mods (by Alex)
  • Modding: (change) Metalsmith jobs properly tagged as “Metalsmith” instead of “Social” in data files now (update your mod if need be)
  • Modding: (change) Consumable item Category removed. Use food, drink, medical.. instead (update mod if need be)
  • UI: Updated trait tooltip to display mood growth/decrease modifiers when relevant
  • UI: More legible settler character sheet displaying more info while using less screen estate
  • UI: Updated settler info panel and population screen to take the new artifact/utility equipment slot into account
  • UI: Added relation tab to the settler info panel (displaying friends, foes, pets)
  • UI: The mood tab in the settler info panel got a makeover and displays more info
  • UI: Clicking on a faction’s banner on the world map open their diplomatic screen (when applicable)
  • UI: The world map can work without pausing now and pause/speed keyboard shortcuts work (no buttons yet) (bit experimental)
  • UI: The animal info panel has been reworked and behave very similarly to the settler info panel
  • UI: Butcher screen display population count by species
  • UI: Multiselection menu added to combat mode
  • UI: Experimental: pause/speed keyboard shortcuts work on the worldmap now.
  • UI: Much needed facelift to the in-game mod menu.
  • Fixed: Possible case where a settler could stop moving (despite the UI telling you they are) until they switch to a new job on their own.
  • Fixed: Misc issues found in the experimental version
  • Fixed: Clicking on combat log messages wouldn’t center the camera on the action
  • Fixed: Expeditions not properly reset when starting a second game

Faction Warfare Update

Here is the last major update for our 0.6 branch, introducing the faction warfare system!

While the previous update added the ability for you to claim resource production centers on the map, this one is doing the same for other factions. It’s introducing numerous new late game systems while balancing the economy. I also included a few community requested features, for good measure. As usual, the following article is going to detail the main new features and changes. You can find the full change-log at the bottom. Let’s dive in! Read More …

After The Collapse: 0.7x Roadmap

With the 0.6 branch nearly complete, I think it’s a great time to talk about our next 0.7 branch 🙂

As usual with those road-map type posts, everything I write here is to be taken with a grain of salt. The general goal will stay the same, but the implementation details may vary. I may delay some of it, I might add completely unrelated things, and so on. Also, do not forget that the following post explains what 0.7.x will look like at the end of that cycle, 0.7.0 itself will just pave the way for those features to be included. And as usual, I’m skipping the usual “raw content” (more stuff to build), UI improvements and bug fixes.

With that out of the way, let’s dive in! 🙂

Read More …

After The Collapse 0.6.10 : Production Centers

Hello there!

Here’s the newest update for After The Collapse. While the change-log might not be as long as with our previous major updates, it’s introducing a couple new major features which will be expanded upon in future patches. I also improved many aspects of the user interface while fixing all the bugs that have been reported so far. Note that I won’t be available from Friday to Monday as I will be in Spain. I’m writing this post in a bit of a hurry to be honest. So, don’t panic if there’s something going wrong and you’re not getting a speedy response to your reports, I’ll get to them as soon as I get back.

Anyway, let’s dive in 🙂

Map and Expedition Overhaul

This is the new major feature in this version, both the map and the way expeditions are handled have been overhauled.

As you can see, the map and expedition screens are a bit more user friendly. More importantly, most map locations are now defended by creatures and bandits. Before you can loot their content, you’ll have to send soldiers to secure them. This is done the exact same way you’d do for any other expedition. You won’t have any control over the fights (at least not yet), but the menu will tell you your chances of victory before launching the expedition. Just make sure not to send people you otherwise absolutely need. Once the location is secured, you can send your usual scavenging and survivor retrieval teams the same way as before.

takeover

Some locations, like the factories, farms, mines and so on, are now considered “production centers”. It means that you can send settlers there on a semi-permanent basis (still through the expedition menu). Once settled in, and the location repaired, they will send resources back to your base on a daily basis. They also can be called back home through the map screen.

The idea behind those features is to allow AI factions to do exactly the same, which will trigger late game conflicts and some use for the diplomatic screen. Of course, I will be adding city level events as well (creatures invading a location, and other surprises). This will be the subject of the next and last content patch for the 0.6 branch.

Combat Mode

One of the goal for this update was to “merge” the building and the combat GUI in a single one. I spent a lot of time trying to do just that, but I won’t lie, it’s not something I can do in a reasonable time frame. There are too many things relying on the current system by now. It would take several dedicated weeks at this point. However, I did the next best thing! One major problem with the current system is that it’s pretty much “all or nothing”, unless you’re willing to manually toggle on/off people military skills depending on what you need to do, which can be very tedious.

As such, it is now possible to quickly put one or multiple settlers in combat mode no matter if their military skill is enabled or not, and more importantly, without interrupting anyone else’s job. This makes the exploration of unknown buildings or clearing a single but pesky creature way easier. This can be done in two ways.

Firstly, you can now lasso select a group of settlers even in build mode. Doing so will open the menu shown in the screenshot shown above. Pressing the “draft military” button will toggle combat mode with only the selected people used as soldiers (independently of military skill) while the rest of your settlement will continue to work as usual (they won’t flee to a safe zone either).

Secondly, there’s a new “recruit” button at the bottom of the individual settler info menu. It does the exact same as above, except that only the selected settler will be put in combat mode.

User Interface

Following many of your suggestions, I’ve added a bunch of little things to the UI. The most notable one is a configurable list of resources at the top of the screen.

Clicking on any of those icons will show the menu pictured above which allows you to select a new resource. The general idea is to reduce the amount of time spent in the clunky storage menu.

Additionally, I’ve added a right-click menu for all the consumable items (food, drinks, medical stuff) showing exactly what they do. Similarly, standard resources also got their own right-click menu displaying their weight, value, and a clickable list of everything that can be built using those. As with all the item related menu, you can access those menus from pretty much any screen displaying such items (inventory, trading, factory queues / recipe list).

item info panel

There are a few other minor improvements, updated tool-tips and such. Refer to the changelog at the bottom for a full list.

Performances and Bug Fixes

I improved performances on larger maps quite massively. Without entering into technical details, the size of a map (and how much content it contains) has much less of an impact on performances than before. Additionally, some of you will be happy to know that I got rid of an annoying micro lag that was happening every couple seconds on maps where the content of unexplored buildings is hidden.

And, as usual, all the properly reported bugs/crashes have been fixed alongside a bunch of small issues I noticed during testing. Thanks to all the people who contributed!

Save-game Compatibility

Save-games from 0.6.8 are technically compatible with a few caveats. The content of every unexplored building will be revealed, meaning that if there’s any zombie in there, you’ll soon be under attack. No way around it. The world map will not contain the 3 new locations. Existing locations, while having hostiles automatically spawned in, won’t be properly claimed by hostile factions, this is just a graphical thing, tho. Large batteries will have to be removed and put back again for their new stats to apply.

Personal Notes

While not as massive as our two previous content patches, this is still a very important update. The next version will make good use of this new expedition framework, making the world outside your base much more dynamic. Plus, the ability to receive rare materials like electronic parts and steel on a regular basis makes the construction of robots much more manageable. As I said earlier, the next version will be the last in the 0.6 branch. It should have been this one, but the time spent on trying to merge the build and combat UI forced me to delay those last missing features a bit.

Full Changelog

  • AI: Pasture “bring food” job will automatically get priority if the pasture has no wheat left
  • AI: Non priority jobs are sorted by age (oldest job first to alleviate the problem of having older jobs lagging forever behind)
  • AI: Changed the way factories handle queued ‘repeat until X’ jobs so they always process all of the queue instead of staying stuck on a particular job
  • Balance: To make cover more usable and less prone to friendly damage, bullets will ignore cover items from the same faction as the shooter
  • Balance: Large batteries are storing way more energy and their output has been increased to be on par with a charcoal based generator
  • Balance: Altered how skills/traits impact crafting efficiency to prevent someone with zero skill from taking days to craft anything (and someone maxed from doing a complicated job in seconds)
  • Content: Ability to take over production centers on the map
  • Content: Production centers under your influence send resources daily
  • Content: Locations on the world map can be defended by hostiles and must be conquered before being looted or taken over
  • Content: Added new world map locations, and updated existing ones
  • Engine: Massive performance improvement (on busy maps, larger maps and caverns, especially)
  • Engine: Savegames keep track of game speed
  • Engine: Changed how hidden zones / fog of war is handled, leading to better performances
  • Graphics: Edited faction colors and added missing flags (military & fauna)
  • Graphics: City map faction ownership is shown using flags and circles instead of dirty tile coloring
  • UI: Settlers can be lasso selected both in combat and build mode now
  • UI: Added “multi selection” menu providing a list of all selected settlers
  • UI: You can enter a “minor” combat mode via the multi selection menu, only enabling combat on selected settlers and without interupting everbody else’s jobs
  • UI: Added ability to draft a singular settler in combat mode through individual settler info menu (same minor combat mode as above)
  • UI: Added a “center camera” button to individual settler and animal info menus
  • UI: Removed the top panel when selecting a settler in build mode as it’s just duplicating info from the settler info panel
  • UI: Added customizable top bar showing the stored amount of 5 resources of your choosing (click on resource to change)
  • UI: Overhauled the world map/expedition UI
  • UI: Added right click info panel for food, drinks, medicine and other consumable items (show effects and traits)
  • UI: Added right click info panel for standard items (display value, weight and a list of buildings that can be built with)
  • UI: Right clicking in the crafting menu’s recipe list or queue will show the info panel for the item being produced
  • UI: You can [Ctrl]+Click to force select zones even when objects are close to your cursor
  • UI: The game will show the range of the generator or power relay you’re about to build to make placement easier
  • UI: Added help tooltips regarding the new kinds of expeditions
  • UI: Updated some of the tooltips and help screens with up to date information
  • Fixed: Sorting people by Happiness or Health in the Population menu wouldn’t work
  • Fixed: Starting settlers would not spawn in the proper location in large and gigantic maps
  • Fixed: Ordering someone to equip a new weapon while they were using a stair, on a precise frame, could cause them to disappear
  • Fixed: Issue with colors and titles when clicking on the game log
  • Fixed: Lasso selection would select people both below & above ground at the same time (oops)
  • Fixed: It was possible to equip weapons/armors on robots
  • Fixed: A few rare/potential crashes tied to multithreading
  • Fixed: Weird crash related to wrong sprite ID being used when placing/building a new object (couldn’t reproduce, but it’s a thing and it’s fixed)
  • Fixed: Keyboard shortcuts would interfere when renaming depots
  • Fixed: One of the late game events (massive shambler attack) couldn’t trigger
  • Fixed: Main menu could become unresponsive when the online newsfeed is enabled but our website is lagging
  • Fixed: Regular micro pause every couple seconds
  • Fixed: It was possible to “cheat” the fog of war and select items/creatures through it
  • Fixed: Case where cattle could go invisible (it’s more a hack than a fix, it was added last second)
  • Fixed: After loading a save or canceling a butchering job at a specific moment, the butchering station could get stuck

After The Collapse 0.6.8 : Robotics

To finish the year with a high note, here is another very large update for After The Collapse focusing on late game, user interface and resource management. As usual, I’ll go over the major changes in this article and add the full change-log at the end for the complete picture.

And with no further introduction, let’s talk about our new toys 🙂

Read More …