Monday, 26 January 2015

Patch notes 9.3 to 10.4 distilled

In these posts, I'll "distill" the patch notes released by The Fun Pimps, singling out those rather fewer game-mechanical changes that I consider to be noteworthy. In this way, players familiar with older versions get a chance to "catch up" quickly without having to read the mile-long patch notes themselves.

Alpha 10.0 from alpha 9.3, major changes
  • Character "creation" added - what this means is the usual cosmetic cowshit where you can decide what your character looks like; it hasn't got fuck-all to do with real RPG character creation
  • "Heat Map" system added, where certain player acitivies add to a local area "heat" total, which eventually spawns a trio of Spider Zombie Scouts, which might scream for a Horde if they discover anything interesting. Player testing seems to indicate that if you cut down on activities (especially running Forges) for some time, the Heat will gradually dissipate
  • Wellness system added
  • Brand new Server Browser
  • "Township" generation system added to map, each township has 2-8 blocks with 4 or 8 (or perhaps sometimes 6?) blocks per building. These seem to mitigate the problem of POIs only spawning on straight (north-south and east-west) roads
  • Shops with high-value loot added to both random map and Navezgane map
  • Concrete building changed to more elaborate system (place Rebar Frame, upgrade with Wood, pour Concrete Mix, then wait for it to cure)
  • 5 new graphically marked storage containers added, then a 6th a few 0.1 versions later, to better facilitate loot storage and sorting, compared to the chaos of keeping everything in identical unlabeled Storage Chests
  • Ladder interaction changed
  • Item crafting made friendlier, with mouse-over info on not-yet-used recipes on the Crafting Canvas
  • Scrap Armour added (you need the "MacDyver" Skill Book), and Bio-fuel cooking (Beaker needed)
  • Animal Fat added as a loot item (cook it into Tallow)
  • Nail Gun added. It uses Nails when fired as a weapon, but not when used to upgrade building blocks (where it only requires 1 hit per block, as opposed to 2 for Claw Hammer, 3 for Repair Tool and 4 for Stone Axe)
  • Small Stone can be made into Gravel
  • Game setup options added for Small and Very Small textures, to make it possible to play 7D2D on computers with lower specifications (mainly ones with very old 3D graphics cards)
  • Stealth damage now possible on animals (×2 dam. if you crouch and they're unaware of your presence)
  • Animal Gore Blocks added. Animals sometimes spawn dead or dying (creating Gore Blocks, which increase local area "Heat Map" if not destroyed by the player - eventually the Animal Gore Block deterioates into a voxel of Dirt)
  • Smelt Time displayed in Forge interface, similar to how it's long been with Camp Fires
  • Goldenrod Flower can be farmed
  • Wood Hatches for roof access closure added
  • The Sniper Scope part can now be used on its own as a telescope
  • Clubs are now much slower to swing, and cost Stamina per swing, but do more damage
  • Pig Health reduced to match that of Deer (they used to be about 50% sturdier, in my estimate, requiring 3 Crossbow Bolts to die as opposed to 2 for Deer, back before stealth/crouch sniper damage was added, and before animals could suffer the Bleeding DeBuff)
  • You can no longer eat or drink if, respectively, your Food Meter or Hydration Meter is at 100%. Now you can over-eat or over-drink once, i.e. if you eat a 20% Food item and your Food Meter is at 90%, it'll go up to 110% (but still only show as 100%) whereas before 10.0 half of the food value would have been wasted
  • Torches now require Tallow
  • Yucca Juice nerfed, you now need 4 Yucca Plant to make 1 bottle, not just 1 Plant
  • Moving in water slows you down
  • Crop growth, and Camp Fire and Force processing, now continues even if no players are present in the "map chunk"
  • Surface Boulders no longer drop Pot or Coal
  • Torches can now set targets on fire (and targets can get rid of that DeBuff again by jumping into water)
  • Air Drop intervals are now set in days rather than in hours. This means that if servers are not updated, air drops might be something like 24 or 51 or 69 days apart!
  • When using a Skill Book, you're now told which recipes you've learned
  • Zombies respawn immediately in the Wasteland Biomes, or in 4 days in other Biomes (as per the "Spawn Mask" system). Animals respawn in 5 days
Alpha 10.1 from 10.0, major changes
  • The Burning DeBuff (from being hit by a Torch) can now be removed by drinking any water or juice
  • Coffee now subtracts 1 from the Hydration Meter, so that it can always be consumed even when the Hydration Meter is at or above 100%
  • Torches now have Durability (15, to be exact), limiting their use in combat. They also require crafted Torch Holders to be placed on walls, with the Torch Holder item being permanent (this was later changed), and them having Durability means that they can no longer stack
Alpha 10.2 from 10.1, major changes
  • Murky Water can now be collected in Empty Cans, then boiled on a Stick in a Camp Fire (this is probably my 2nd most favourite game change ever, as before 10.2 the early game was about nothing except stressing over the risk of dying of dehydration if you weren't lucky to find a Cooking Pot so you became able to boil your own water (or a Short Iron Pipe so you could make your own Forge and make a Cooking Pot that way))
  • Torch Holders removed from the game again, as a craftable items. Now, whenever you try to place a Torch on a wall, a torch holder automatically appears, and disappears again when you remove the Torch
  • Forge-Making is now "gated" behind the Skill Book "Forge Ahead", meaning you must find and read one before you can make a Forge. There's been some talk about having a few Forges pre-placed in the world, but I don't think that's actually been done yet
Alpha 10.3 from 10.2, major changes
  • More hair and beard styles added to Character Customization
  • New Cobblestone Build Block system added to the game. It's rather like the Concrete/Rebar system but less Durable, and much less expensive in that it doesn't require  Iron
  • Wellness changed to be "curved", so that it's easier to improve Wellness when it's low, and harder to improve it when it's gets high
  • Vitamins added; they boost Wellness, and cure Dysentery (the DeBuff you can get from drinking Murky Water)
  • Beer added to the game as loot. I think it's also new that Grain Alcohol, like Beer, can give the Beer Buzz Buff which is similar to the Buff from Coffee, but with the limitation that consuming too much alcohol in too short a time period can give you a nasty, very nasty or extremely nasty DeBuff. Those are immediate DeBuffs, though, from over-consumption - I've yet to see the talked-about Hangover after-use DeBuff occur
  • Anti-Biotics now only gives +2 Wellness upfront, down from +5. It's not stated whether this means that the over-24-hours Wellness gain has been increased from +5 to +8
  • Dogs can no longer appear in the Burned Forest Biome, only in the Wasteland, and near Barn POIs (and of course in 7th Night Hordes). As intensely hated as Dogs are, this caused much rejoicing
  • Server time now only advances if at least one player is connected to the server. This has been asked for many times, by me and by others, and so scratch the two previous references to Peter's all-time gameplay mechanics favourite change. Because this is it, turning server-based play into a mature experience (I still like the previous 2 ones a lot, though)
  • Torches now have a random burn time of about 20 minutes, after which they'll disappear
  • Craftable Candles added. You need Tallow (boiled Animal Fat) to make them. They're meant to replace Torches as the primary light source, although many players (including me) think they give off too little light)
Alpha 10.4 from 10.3, major changes
  • Player swimming physics now improved. Earlier, your movement got slowed down drastically as soon as your feet touched water, but this huge annoyance is now gone
  • Bookcase loot reduced, from an average of 1-3 books per case to 0-2 books per case (1d3-1 now instead of 1d3, basically)
  • Food Poisoning no longer causes Health damage, only Wellness damage. Meaning do not eat those Sham Sandwiches, ever, no matter how hungry you are!
  • Random wandering Hordes re-added to the game
  • Torches no longer have a burn time (I think this means they now provide light indefinitely, rathe than "burn time" referring to how good they are to use as fuel in a Forge or a Camp Fire, but not 100% sure)
Placeholder link to the 10.5 (or more likely 11.0) patch note distillation

Peter Knutsen

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