Revenge of the Titans 1.2 released

Late last night I uploaded 1.2 of RoTT. The mirrors may or may not pick it up correctly (and Webstart/Linux will probably get it wrong too – clear your cache), but you can tell what version you’ve got because the installer now says it’s 1.2 when it’s installing on Windows; and on the Mac there should be 1.2 in the program information from the Finder; and the title screen, if you look closely somewhere around the middle, should also say 1.2.




Linux (Webstart)

What’s Changed

  • Factories now scavenge around for patches of empty crystals instead of just stopping when their current patch runs out. Less clicking! Hurrah!
  • Scanners are now more expensive at $750 (on account of just how bloody useful they are), and batteries are $500.
  • The moon aliens are worth a bit less cash when they’re destroyed, and they’re slightly tougher.
  • There’s been some tweaking of the game’s auto-difficulty adjustment function. If you get badly kicked in, the replay should be much more doable. It should also get harder a bit sooner as a result of the gestalt changes to pricing and such.
  • That annoying bug where an alien would scurry off to the bottom left and go hide in the bedrock has been fixed. Hurrah!
  • Aliens no longer self-destruct when cutting past scenery.
  • The maximum useful number of scanners/batteries/cooling towers/reactors that you can stick next to a turret or whatever is now 4. Any more than that won’t make a difference.
  • Fixed the laser problem when it was firing so fast its beam hadn’t finished the last shot, and wasted the ammo.
  • Adding batteries to turrets now dynamically adds to their ammunition – no need to reload.
  • The levels are ever so slightly smaller to begin with. A little more claustrophobic perhaps.
  • The level will begin automatically if you’ve got less than $100 (and therefore cannot place a refinery to start the level)

So What’s The Best Strategy?

Well, there’s a funny thing about our games… I’m not all that good at them myself! I’ve never completed any of them fully. There are loads of far more talented gamer types out there who have done. I once got an email from someone who’d found a problem on level 75 of Droid Assault (it’s a danger stage populated entirely by laser-shielded battledroids, that are themselves armed with lasers. You can imagine what the problem was when he transferred). Level 75!! I’ve never even got to level 50 without cheating. But there we go.

So far, what I do generally in RoTT is this:

  • Now I’ve made it so that you can look around before the aliens come, I set up a few key defences along the roads if I’ve got more than $1000 in the bank.
  • I never place things actually on roads if I can help it, because the gidrahs will very likely want to trample on them. Except for mines. I plonk mines in lines down the roads, and it blows them to smithereens one at a time. Mines are good.
  • When I’ve done that I paint as many refineries as I can next to as many crystals as possible. I spend every last penny on refineries. This is critical to success. It only takes a second full collection to make $100 profit from a refinery.
  • If (as often happens) the refineries are between your base and the gidrahs, they’re going to trample it. Get some walls up and put a few turrets behind them.
  • Eventually the gidrahs are going to get through your initial defences. I usually end up putting some big guns and a bunch of upgrades next to the base, and plonking concrete in front of them. Then it’s a case of nailbiting worry and frantic reloading.
  • I don’t always research something. Particularly by the Moon levels, things are getting mental. If I start a level with less than $2500 in the kitty I usually get kicked in. Sometimes you’ve just gotta save your cash. You can research something on the next level. You’re not honestly expected to be able to research everything by the end of the game. Choose your path. If it doesn’t work out… go back a few levels, maybe take a different turning.
  • As for research, I get all the basic tower upgrades done first before going for heavier guns. You only need the heavy guns from level 12 onwards.
  • Mines are especially effective on armoured targets or ones with loads of hitpoints. The bog standard rank-and-file gidrah can be picked off by spamming them with ordinary blasters – so don’t put heavy guns down in their way – it’s a complete waste of money and overkill.

A number of people have commented on the usefulness or not of the droid factory. The droid factory actually has a special purpose, and it’s related to what happens on Mars, where you will encounter gidlets. Gidlets can’t be targeted by turrets because they’re too small – you need to go hand-to-hand with droids. Droids are only otherwise much use against unarmoured targets as they have tiny little blasters.

Likewise you may be wondering about capacitors. Apart from how cool they are, especially with a few reactors and batteries nearby, you’ll be needing them to zap wraiths on Mars, which are invisible and therefore won’t get shot at by turrets or droids. You have been warned!

Some Reasoning about Game Design

So… why is this game so difficult for some, and so easy for others? What am I doing about it? Why are the things the way they are and not exactly howyou want them to be?

For example why’s there no difficulty selector? (In any of our games?)

Here’s my reasoning on difficulty selection. I don’t necessarily want you to agree with it, but understand what it is we’re trying to achieve with what we have: our games automatically tune for difficulty using a variety of performance metrics gathered from the player’s performance over time and on-the-moment. With a difficulty selector, people have no idea what difficulty to choose initially. I always select HARD in case EASY is boring but often I end up having a bit of a tedious time quickloading games every 20 seconds because actually, hard was too hard. Once I’ve chosen HARD, that’s it – there’s no changing it, no going back.

With auto tuning difficulty, the game starts off very easy. If you’re good – which it works out by how much money you’ve got in the bank, how many things you’ve got researched, and how many levels you’ve finished straight without defeat so far – it gets harder. Up until the point where you just can’t cope, and you get defeated. At this point, it lops a huge factor off the difficulty and invites you to try the level again. If you still get defeated, it lops even more difficulty off the level, until finally, you’re playing it as if you were a n00b right back at the beginning of the game again, albeit coping with all the new things that have turned up. The idea with the difficulty is that it slowly creeps up and if we get the balance just right, you’ll be having a fairly permanently frenetic time until you finally taste defeat. Defeat is part of this game. You are destined to be overwhelmed a few times. This is deliberate in RoTT.

Some people might be finding the game disproportionately hard even so. That’s because it’s a very deep game. There are a lot of things to juggle simultaneously – strategy, expenditure, mouse dexterity, research. You’re probably not thinking very hard. This is not a casual game! It’s not even a tower defence game. It’s an RTS, and a cunning one at that. Rethink your game!

I’m off on holiday to France now leaving all the problems that surface with poor old Chaz, so be nice to him, because he doesn’t know how to fix the server if it breaks, or any bugs.

122 thoughts on 'Revenge of the Titans 1.2 released'

  1. Mouse seems kinda jerky, as if mouse acceleration was turned on. Was kinda weird.

    Also the assault started with me still having 130 funds :> Nothing major, but I thought it starts below 100.

  2. Wow, this was a definite improvement! It felt incredibly hectic, strategic and difficult! With scanners costing 750 a pop and the buffs limited to 4 of a type per turret, I was inclined to build a LOT more turrets – And their placement mattered a ton, too! The titans seem really intelligent (perhaps even a bit too much!) and I had to plant my defenses well behind mines and barricades. So much in fact that I started having to actually carefully DESIGN my layout in the beginning! Using turrets as a deterrent to lure titans into a choke-point littered with cluster mines… oh, yes!

    On the other hand, they seem even too intelligent here. They pick the easiest path and refuse to even try any other. They TURN BACK like changing their minds in the middle of the assault and all funnel through the single weakest point in the defensive line. They all bunch up and queue to get through this one spot, and no other.

    One critique I have is with the placement of the crystals – Sometimes they are very, very close to the edge of the map, right next to spawn points and such, and thus really hard to defend at all. A side-effect of the smaller maps I suppose. Not that I complain about that, the claustrophobia was great – Just the crystals near the edge bum me.

    I was constantly running out of cash, having to skip research a few times just to afford my next line of defense. While a big change from previous versions, I understand this is intentional and welcome the pressure of just making it through – And the replay value of different tech choices, since you can’t have them all!

    The game is really fact-paced now, I had to start using the hotkeys just to keep up. Might want to slow it down just a notch… I was way too busy managing everything to even use power-ups! (you might want to think about a way to ‘train’ the player to use them… I still don’t really know what all of them do, so I tend to hoard them and only use one if I seem really hosed. Nothing an orbital nuke won’t solve!)

  3. I think the game is great and am thinking about buying it but I think you should make the costs for the research that reduces the work you have to do much smaller then it is now because right now I don’t see the point in paying 7500 for a little less work on my end.

  4. I feel like the game has much more replay value now. I enjoyed 1.0, but after being beaten, felt less keen to give it another try. Now I can actually gain enough cash to get into some decent research items and open up the strategy of the game a bit. I still have to skip the research every so often to use the cash for a strong start on the next level, but I think that’s a fair trade-off. Still wish there was a stronger indication of what weapons/items a particular research path will open up, as I’m still left to guess what the benefits of a particular strain might be.

    I’ll occasionally experience quite severe slow-down, with the UI becoming temporarily unresponsive as a result. Not sure if there’s any further optimisation that can be done on the game or if it’s the limitations of my PC.

    What happened to the animated intro shown in a previous post? Is it going in the game? Any plans for a similar outro sequence upon completion of the game? It seemed to get a lot of positive feedback.

    And what about the Merch, or is it early days for that yet?

    Hope you’re enjoying your pies and ale : P

  5. Great changes! I had noticed that stacking scanners allowed me to breeze through almost every single moon level 15+ with two rocket launchers and eight scanners.

    I would love to know how to unlock capacitors though, as well as generally more information about tech trees.

    Do Droid Factories still produce droids before the level starts? I noticed this happening in 1.2

  6. The changes since 1.2 made the game much more ‘fluid’ in it’s difficulty curve, nicely done! During the moon missions things get really hectic sometimes. In the middle of an intense battle it would be nice to immediately see if you have enough credits to buy a tower. Right now the only way to do that is by trying to build it (2 clicks) or memorizing the amount of credits required for each tower. A small icon change to indicate if there are enough credits would be of enormous help in difficult missions.

    1. I agree, this would be a nice little improvement / feature

      What would make more graphical sense is to colour or shade differently or change the opacity of the same icon to create a visual distinction between “available” and “unavailable” objects in terms of funds.

      1. Why don’t have a little number on each icon (or behind, or in tiny in bottom right) telling how much you can build?
        This could be a very cool feature to give to the user a better vision of “how my funds are”.

        This is just an idea…

        1. There’s an RFE for just that for powerups – where we’re talking single digits – but the available space is quite limited for the other buildings, for which there will be double-digit availablility. Perhaps if Chaz implements magnification (a la Mac OS dock) for the icons we can show the number on the magnified icon.

  7. Every time I download for Windows I get an “Installer integrity check failed” error.

  8. This game goes from strength to strength with every patch! The Earth levels are truly nail biting now, although playing well through that stage of the game still gets you into a pretty safe and comfortable position on the Moon. What I think would help is if the auto-increasing difficulty eventually resulted in an increase in the ratio of the larger ‘Giganticus’ Titan types (so you’d start to see columns of standard Titans being lead by two ‘Giganticus’ instead of just one). Certainly the difficulty auto-tuner should be heavily influenced by the amount of cash you start a level with, since this is the most significant factor determining how hard it is, though this should also be modified by the amount of money that has been spent on research so far to prevent exploits.

    I agree with Core Xii above, though, that it’s perhaps a bit harsh having the crystals so horrifyingly close to the Titan spawn points in what are supposedly the introductory levels.

    Might I also suggest that, when the player restarts a level, the game actually *asks* whether he/she would like the difficulty decreased. Sometimes I can see precisely what I’ve done wrong and could fully handle the same situation again by doing something slightly differently, but, knowing that the auto-tuner will slash the difficulty next time almost makes restarting the level feel like cheating.

    Finally, I demand that you take a well deserved break from game development during this bank holiday weekend, you crazy workaholics!

  9. Auto-tuning difficulty is great and all, but some of us casual gamers would love to play through this thing and give you money.
    Currently, I’ll just have to keep it.

  10. Been having trouble just trying to download it again. I will let you know once I get it.

  11. @Kmandr
    With regards to not being able to easily tell if you have enough credits, perhaps the icons could be dimmed out when you don’t have enough credits? That or having the price down the bottom when you select something to build show the price if you have enough money or the amount you need if you can’t afford it, or both. Something like $250/-25 if you are $25 short.

  12. Hi, found a couple of bugs in this build ^_^

    If a connected silo is destroyed but the connected refineries remain, they will still gain the benefit of the destroyed silo for the duration of the level. This also appears to work for all booster towers. Allows player to exploit tiny compact defence points by placing their booster towers outside the walls and simply letting them be destroyed.

    Some of the bigger titans shielded titans normally requiring heavy blasters can easily be beaten by simply dropping cheap buildings in their way, such as the Decoy. This is because of the feature that causes titans to lose health if attacking a building. I would suggest removing this feature for the bigger ones but keeping it for the small titans. As I was able to get through the game without the x2 or x3 blaster.

    I would like to suggest a options menu that allows you to assign your own shortcuts as the tower menu is the hardest part of this game, the icons are way to small and all look the same and it takes forever for the name of the tower to pop up after hovering over the icon. It should be instant and maybe get bigger like a macbook menu ( I hate macs)
    Also. I love this game, and by association you.

  13. wait a sec, only 4 to a turret? or 4 of one type to a turret? I assmed it was 4 scanners 4 batterys 4 coolers but is it 2 scanners 1 battery 1 cooler?

    1. No, 4 of each. You can still make a completely devastatingly powerful bunch of turrets with 4 scanners, 4 batteries, 4 cooling towers, and 4 reactors! If you can just manage to fit them all in…

  14. That first link would keep failing. The second link you gave worked great and it installed without a problem.

  15. Good game. If I may, I humbly suggest that it’s still pretty easy, however. I downloaded 1.2, started at the beginning, and played right through to the end without dying. Ended with 20k credits. I think that the four-buff limitation definitely makes it more difficult than 1.1, so good on that.

    As for strategy, I think that you (the developer) may be finding it difficult because you think mines are good. I think they’re a very expensive way to kill things and I don’t research them. On this 1.2 playthrough I only researched the three turret buffs, the two wall types, and the heavy turret.

    Anyways, I tip my hat to you. Good game with great style.

    1. But I like blowing things up! They are particularly effective on armoured gidrahs, and gidrahs with lots of hitpoints. Still more expensive than actually just lining up loads of blasters to do the job of course, but the idea is you mine the roads, and the aliens don’t know not to step on them (unlike your turrets, which they actively try to avoid if they can). I mine the roads all the way along from the spawn points knowing that every mine that goes off is going to kill a few aliens.

  16. I really love the game, but I was really pissed when I bought the heavy blaster, makes things damn near impossible. Stat wise, it’s just changed, not better (2x power + .5x ammo still equals 1x overall), SO WHY DOES IT COST 3X AS MUCH TO PUT DOWN? Buying heavy blaster really screwed me over, and was a waste of research. All in all the game is way too hard, especially when you get to the big green thing.

    But maybe I’m going at it wrong, maybe I’ll try some different research options, but different tactics should work, not just one way of playing. Otherwise, what was the point in making those ways of playing?

    1. Different tactics do work… but some tactics just won’t 🙂 Or they’ll be really difficult to pull off. The heavy blaster does exactly twice the damage but only has about 2 rounds less ammunition in it than a standard blaster. It might seem expensive but ordinary blasters can’t penetrate lightly armoured gidrahs’ armour (well, they can, if you do research into alien biology, but the amount that gets through is still feeble). So really you only want to use your heavy blasters on advancing columns of armoured gidrahs, not on the common-or-garden gidrus gidrus variety.

      The Mars patch coming at the end of the month will also see intelligent targeting in the turrets, such that turrets take preferential aim against gidrahs they are most capable of killing, which should see a few less wasted shots and some slightly better tactics.

  17. The aliens need to be more aggressive about hunting refineries (and other buildings perhaps) that are away from the main base.
    I’ve noticed that even if refineries are placed quite close to the aliens’ main path, very very few will make a diversion to attack the refinery. 99% of the aliens will head straight for the main base (and this is after a totally unbroken succession of wins by my side – so I assume the aliens side is at a high AI level). This means that I can afford to completely ignore defending my refineries (unless that is, the level forces them to be positioned directly or almost directly on the aliens’ warpath) and focus on creating a huge artillery position near the main base (say, plonk directly in front of the main base: 2x rocket launchers with 4xbattery, 4xscanner, 4xcooling tower + a few concrete/steel roadblocks to slow down the aliens and make them cluster together for easier targeting). Sure, maybe I’ll lose a couple of refineries or three to the odd alien, but they are so cheap its doesnt matter (and the fact that refinery attack use about alien healthpoints tends to solve the matter by itself) and building replacements makes sure my crystals flow stays healthy.

    1. Indeed, all but one alien on the Earth and Moon levels uses the so-called “DumbBrain”. The DumbBrain selects the player’s base as the target, and ignores all other targets. If anything happens to get in the way, they attack it. Furthermore the DumbBrain takes almost no notice whatsoever of the placement of your turrets.

      However, OCCULUS ENORMUS is the first gidrah that has the “CleverBrain”. The CleverBrain selects the nearest building to it to attack (and will still attack anything that gets in the way). The CleverBrain also takes a lot more notice of your turrets and tries to avoid them.

      On Mars, you will find that more of the gidrahs will have the CleverBrain – and it’ll make the game a whole lot trickier. Suddenly you will have to put serious effort into defending your refineries if they are anywhere between your base and a spawn point.

      On Saturn you’ll see the introduction of the TacticalBrain. This brain chooses targets tactically in order to help the other gidrahs – it’ll actively seek out your most valuable buildings, and it’ll try to completely avoid being shot along the way.

      Oh, and they’re going to be shooting back at you, too…

  18. @Carocrazy132:

    The heavy blaster with buffs is all I used for the last seven levels. I think it’s the workhorse of alien killing. But hey, different strategies will work for different people. I guess this just underscores how difficult it is to get a game’s balance and difficulty tuned, and how it’s impossible to make everyone happy.

    Anyways, that problem is what the autodifficult is supposed to deal with.

  19. The decoys are way underpowered. They’re relatively cheap but they’re also basically useless. I can plant 20 of them in a group but they’re still useless – the same.
    I suggest making them more expensive while giving them much greater range and effectiveness – perhaps it could work like this: the more decoys you plant within range of each other, the greater the range and effectiveness.
    At the moment it seems like 1 out of 30 or 40 aliens are attracted to the decoy beacons (not clear to me if the red circle “range” of the decoy has any effect on this at ll). I had daydreams of being able to lure aliens away pied-piper like with the decoys into traps (killzones fired upon by my other weapons) but as it is, they catch a tiny proportion of the total swarm of aliens so its practically pointless.

  20. The games used 100% CPU, also when suspended (im using Linux). Also, when I exed the game after finishing moon, it froze.
    I had to do Ctrl-Alt-1, log in and kill the Java process.

    Apart from that, the changes in 1.2 are great. I still come out with 20000 $ after moon, though.

    I’d also like a clarification of this question by Wolf_alex:

    “wait a sec, only 4 to a turret? or 4 of one type to a turret? I assmed it was 4 scanners 4 batterys 4 coolers but is it 2 scanners 1 battery 1 cooler?”

  21. Yeah, aliens need to be harder somehow – maybe give them ranged weapons? Bigger, faster swarms?
    I just finished moon easily with a strategy focussed on fully powered-up rocket launchers with barricades either clustered around the base or in a forward hub position. I threw in some advanced spreader guns for fun but didn’t really need them. Not sure if I really needed all the powerups either. I didn’t feel the need to use any special powers (smart bomb, freeze etc etc) at any point in all the missions.

  22. @Zhan: Yeah, I haven’t found the decoys to work, either.

    @Jacob: It’s definitely four of each type of buff.

  23. Yeah, I can attest that using a combination of Zhan’s and Guff’s hints renders pretty much every later levels much more smooth than they should be.

    –Append heavy blasters, four of each buffs, and some walls (though in my games the aliens never reach them) to your main base.

    –keep your refineries off the roads and completely defenseless.

    Voilà, massive alien ownage with drastically reduced cross-map micromanagement.

    Some of your refineries will be destroyed now and again, but you can spam them endlessly (and almost costlessly) and still come out ahead.

  24. After playing the latest version, what would end up happening with my games is all the Titans would sit just outside my range of fire, gather into huge hordes then slowly filter towards my base taking a route that ended up allowing my turrets the longest duration of fire… they only charged in using a line of single Titans, if only they had decided to all charge at once it would of been a much more interesting game, I didn’t need to use a single powerup through the campaign or restart once, the 4 scanners + 1 rocket launcher = game win! Give or take an assault cannon + cooling tower.

    Perhaps the game needs a challenge mode that makes the Titans as aggressive as possible?

  25. wow, this game is really good. Can’t wait for more. I feel like the game ended long before I had a chance to explore the tech tree.

  26. Also, I believe there should be a constant flow of Titans during the boss battles to increase the tension and excitement until the large beast is destroyed, at which point the boss sends out a massive shockwave which disintegrates all the renaming Titans.

    If the constant flow of Titans sounds like it would unbalance the game from profit perhaps they could be a different type of titan that doesn’t give the player funds when destroyed?

  27. Not sure if this is a bug or not, but I was able to destroy titans by building refineries over them that they’d just destroyed….

  28. – minimap?
    – if you have more than one freeze/ bezerk/ smartbomb etc can it show as a little overlayed “2”/”3″ etc on the icon?
    – is the fact that you can kill titans by building stuff on them intentional?
    – techtrees that actually look like trees and not just a random layout of icons? and while you’re at it, can the mouseover tooltips please work for stuff you’ve already bought?
    – minimap?
    – I didn’t undertstand what scanners were for and didn’t use batteries until the last moon level but I still completed both reasonably easily. Is there an alternate stratagy other than get loads of heavy turrets + add walls and cooling towers = profit? what’s the point of the other research?
    – minimap?
    – steel barriers at the moment feel like a compulsary upgrade. If it’s compulsary, why isn’t it available by default?
    – minimap?

    1. hiya Bob!

      – minimap schminimap! Maybe. If I can figure out how to do one. It might end up being a lot less useful than you think.
      – Powerup count overlay – good idea, will ask Chaz.
      – Squishing titans with buildings – yes, this is intentional. But it’s supposed to damage the buildings which I think it isn’t at the mo. And you shouldn’t be able to drop decoys on them.
      – the tech tree isn’t so much a tree as a web. Need to figure out some sort of graphical liney arrowey overlay on the research screen to show what leads to what. And yes we’ll allow you to hover over previously researched stuff. And possibly over stuff you’ve not yet got, at least to show the title or something.
      – steel barriers? You can get by with concrete (or no barriers at all) if you use scanners 😀 I don’t think I’ve bothered with steel so far on the moon levels. But that might be because I waste my money on blowing things up instead.

      Gis a bell sometime, long time no see.

      1. alreeet cas

        – minimap is more so you can navigate round the map more easily – hotkeys and/or mouse/arrow key scroll become quite clumsy on the larger maps where you are more spread out. I know that automating your housekeeping tasks may mitigate this but really that makes automation another compulsary upgrade. I hate compulsary upgrades!
        – steel barriers: didn’t know you could get by with no barriers if you have scanners. a tech tree that actually gives you some idea of possible stratagies may help 😉

        ayeaye will give you a bell in the next couple of days when I’m not absolutely knackered.

        1. What about instead of the mini-map the player can just zoom out really far with the mouse wheel?

      2. One thing I’ve found barriers useful for is delaying the baddies long enough to completely mine a patch of crystals that would otherwise be in their way. This is especially handy when (as others have mentioned) a patch of crystals is very close to a spawn point — just barricade that spawn point, and plan to clear out the minerals before they break through, meanwhile placing more expensive turrets and support towers closer to base where they’ll catch baddies from all spawn points, not just the one threatening that crystal patch.

  29. I manage to get to level 20 with just the blaster, battery and scanner. doing research every level and having 40k + at the end of most levels.

    This is due to the research that allows my normal blasters to damage the small armoured titans. But more importantly the fact that the hardest titan of the moon levels which uses the ‘clever brain’ will just go for my refinery’s even though I have no turrets that can harm it. It will destroy itself on my refiners and I will simply replace it for $100.

    I was hoping to unlock the weapon on the bottom right of the middle set of blocks but have not succeed so far and researched every research upgrade from the top block except ballistics and the greyed out upgrade to increase mining speed. dammit what is the big gun?!

    1. Orbitual nuke?
      think about it huge metle plate that looks like it could open in a second when a large group comes and *screeech* it opens and *pshoow* a huge rocket comes out?
      or it could be a decoy 🙁
      it looks like you went through the game several times so I ask thy this,
      capacitors? :l

  30. OK, several remarks.

    Perhaps you should make the sounds a bit quieter when multiple of them are overlaid. This especially affects the Titan’s nom-nom sounds when attacking buildings and heavy blaster/blast cannon/assault cannon sounds when you have either lots of them or many cooling towers attached to them.

    A small visual note – I know that this makes sense from a placement and range perspective but perhaps just for the effect the bullets/beams and such should come out from designated “barrels” in the turrets, not the center of the sprite? It looks especially silly for rockets and lasers, where the beams or missiles come out from the bases…

    Last but not least – since the game is in beta, how about giving us, beta testers, a kind of developer mode in which we can unlock various stuff (levels, weapons, money) and so on – I must have played through the game like 30 times and it will get subsequently more boring to test some minor tweaks in one technology tree or another.

    1. Nom-nom enhancement already in the pipeline but lowish on the list of priorities right now. Enabling debug mode stuff is a can of worms though – all sorts of weird things happen in debug mode and that’s not going to help me find bugs!

  31. After playing over 40 times and consistently getting thrashed either on the last stage or second to last stage of the moon levels I’m starting to get really frustrated…. I’ve tried several ‘branches’ of research and numerous different strategies but the end result is still the same; it gives me the impression that you (the developer) have designed it so that there is only one particular way to defeat the titans – namely, the biggest guns and lots of them; which removes the ability of the player to try out different and diverse tactics. It kinda makes the game more restrictive than it should be.
    t also means that various technologies are almost useless or not worth the money or time to research. For example, a droid factory can be helpful in the early stages to wipe up the weaker titans (and then let them gang up on the stronger ones) but you yourself have specified that the droid factory will be essential to completing later levels on Mars (which almost removes choice by making only one option available to complete a scenario successfully) Lasers are great to fight the gidrah, but too costly (to research and build), especially when combined with scanners (and there’s no other effective way to use them)
    I haven’t come across the ability to make the refineries more effective at extracting more overall energy from the crystals (which would help) only the ability to extract more before having to be collected, and the placement of crystals on every level is always in a danger zone… How about the extra ability to send a small (unmanned) mining vehicle (ala C&C) so collect crystals?
    Oh, and I’ve noticed that sometimes when using a special power, the description for said power would stay on the screen for some time after I’d used it, obscuring the view and generally getting in the way whilst trying to fight the hordes….
    I think a minimap would only be of use if the levels were huge, and it would take up space on the screen (which I’m guessing your trying to avoid doing to stop things from looking cluttered)
    Aside from these few gripes, the game is fantastic!

  32. Any chance of putting up RotT on Steam for preorder? Your leet price is much more attractive than full price and I’d love to get it on Steam. Maybe you could even offer those who preorder on Steam a deal of paying you directly an extra couple of bucks (to make up for Valve’s cut) for a direct download to help beta test, then kill their access once it’s available on Steam. I really want to pre order but I’d kick myself for not purchasing it through Steam.

    1. We’ll clarify the Steam position in due course but I can categorically state now that the pre-order won’t appear on Steam, and if/when the full game does appear on Steam, it will be at the same price that you can get it from Puppygames, but probably lag a version or two behind in terms of bug fixery.

  33. Game is amazing. Just beat it again, 4 or 5 times now. I still have one minor problem, when the skulls are at the bottom of the screen they are difficult to see through the building menu. Also you cannot put turrets at the very bottom of the map because of the menu being there (actually I’m really not sure if you can or not I haven’t tried, I’m just assuming you can’t). Not a huge deal, but should be fixed. I suggest just making the border for the map just slightly bigger. Looking forward to Mars!

  34. Errr I cant figger on how to get capacitators ive tried many things I cant say everything yet though.
    Could someone place a hint on this :3

    1. Haha yeah I’ve never gotten capacitors either. No idea what research is needed for them.

      1. You need reactors and batteries to research capacitors. And you’ll be needing them for Mars 🙂 There’s a type of gidrah which can only be harmed by capacitors.

        1. ive heard, read it in the blog I think you called them wraiths and I will need drones for gidlets, will gidlets set off mines?
          I cant wait for mars, im getting bored of the earth and moon now :l

          1. Gidlets currently don’t set off mines… but I might make them set off clustermines. Mars progress update @ on the blog this weekend.

  35. Just finished the trial game up to the moon and then bought it not realising there aren’t any more levels yet O_o ! now i’m left in need of fix as i’m hooked already… think i’ll just have to replay the first two until i go insane ><

    I'm not complaining as i was planning on buying it anyway… but it might be a good idea to to make this more apparent to other people through the current purchasing path so not to disappoint. Unless i've blindly missed something in my haste.

    Anyway, congrats on the new release, it's top notch… I didn't think i'd ever get back into strategy games but this is a refreshing and cool approach.

    I got a question for ya though !

    Is there the possibility of it ever being multiplayer?

    because that would be awesome.

    Oh one more thing, currently it hangs on exit under OS 10.6 … it might just be taking a long time to exit but i'm not very patient without any visual feedback.

    1. well its bether to buy it now then later, and you get the cool stuff like drone factorys autoloaders rockets you know
      and its half price right now 😀

      1. More levels coming in 3 weeks time! (Mars – with accompanying scary new boss, new gidrahs, and new scenery) RoTT will probably never be itself multiplayer, but we’ll quite probably make a multiplayer game based on ideas from RoTT. I have three words for you:


  36. I realize you said earlier that you seem to be completely transparent to Valve and they never got back to you but perhaps you should try again? I just saw Eversion being released on Steam – it’s a cool little game but in the end it’s a project from a TIGSource Competition that lasted like a month for crying out loud.

    I believe Valve might be more open to Indie games now than it was before, considering when your last release was and the progress they made with a dedicated Indie section and whatnot.

    1. YES!! I’ve already bought all four PuppyGames titles, but I would happily pledge to purchase again to see them on Steam. Valve would absolutely love the Mac support right now, too.

      If things went well, you could also add Steamcloud and achievements…

      1. Yeah good idea, I’ve bought them all too…

        But in the past i’ve had trouble with my email stopping working with previous titles as i was rather aggressively re-registering the games while messing about restoring system clones… of course a quick email to the peeps here put me in the clear again… but going through steam would help keep track of all game we’ve purchased, keep them up to date and eliminate problems like that.

        Also steam is available for mac now… and hopefully also linux soon.

        Only thing is the ported client seems to be quite buggy, i’m sure it will be ironed out eventually though.

  37. Hey I was doing a stream of me playing the game, but I want to continue on that file how can I copy it?
    also I got multi blasters once but I cant remember how now anyone know?

    1. Just record another stream then stitch them together in a video editor (free one like VirtualDub will probably do the trick).

      Multiblasters : all you need is Cooling Towers I think. I’ll check when I get back from work.

      1. thanks, but I meen LIVEstream and I want to play but without going farther then the streams progress

  38. Arbitrarily numbered in case of line-break fail:

    0. On an intel mac, OSX 10.5.8, I occasionally find my clicks getting ignored. It’s happened too rarely to isolate the conditions, but frequently enough to become an annoyance.

    1. It would be nice to see which upgrades I chose at the start of each finished level. I’m fairly positive my funds and research reached a rather grim plateau after I invested in the cooling unit, but don’t recall the level in which I did so.

    2. Here’s echoing an earlier point that crystals seem a little too inclined to nestle by spawn points.

    3. It’d be nice to be able to specifically influence some of the auto-difficulty parameters. This might address some of the difficulty complaints on both end of the spectrum without devolving to ambiguous “modes” of difficulty. A fairly crude method might just add a center button to the post-mission screen(s), leading to three radio-buttons (too hard/easy/perfect) for your report on the mission, which could appropriately adjust the metrics. I Imagine a more ambitious method hiding in the options menu, to influence particular qualities (like amount of road and proximity of crystals to edges) for the next level.

    4. A minimap might be nice, yes, but even better might be a button that highlights all buildings onscreen according to whether they need a click (for example, red tints wants clicks, blues can do without). When minor disasters transpire on all sides, it can be tricky to visually isolate the little click-me cues. (To some extent, I respect the turmoil, but I’d be less irritable if I lost while brooding over strategic missteps instead of squinting and flailing for the buildings in need of clicking.)

    5. The difficulty adjustment process seems to make it rather easy to slip into a stretch of “wins” that are financial losses, allowing one to trundle on into later levels without any upgrades and eventually requiring some backtracking. This is interesting, but my desire to continue playing tends to be inversely proportional to the amount I must backtrack. Call me greedy.

    6. I’d love a bestiary. Particularly with clever comments.

    7. Keep up the brilliant work.

  39. My comment above is dated “2010 15 15.” The other replies here seem to follow suit: y d d. I find the possibility of fewer tax days exciting.

  40. I’ve got an idea for a new enemy type, NinjaGidrahs!

    They move at a similar speed as regular Gidrah except when they see a bullet heading for them they are able to side step the bullet leaving a shadowy trail meaning that they are very difficult to hit at long range with projectile weapons. The only thing that can hit them are mines, lasers and the blast from rockets. Maybe lucky shotgun blasts can catch them as well.

    1. Idea no.2: Jumping Gidrah!

      These guys aren’t the same as flying enemies in other games, they wont fly over mountains but they will hop over other Gidrah that block their path and also mines and walls. They have a jump cool down so they can’t hurdle all your defences but you’ll need more than one line of walls to stop them. Maybe higher level walls are not jumpable and maybe jumping mines can still catch them.

    2. Idea No.3: Throwing Gidrah!

      These are huge lumpy Gidrah that are swarmed by small Gidrah, when they get under fire they’ll pick up the nearest small Gidrah and toss them towards the turret shooting at it, it will also use Gidrah around it as shields to save himself.

    3. Idea No.4: Rock Gidrah

      These are like regular Gidrah but as soon as they get under fire will stop moving and increase their defence, they act like shields for Gidrah walking behind them, after a while their shield will break and they will continue walking like normal Gidrah. Using mines and rockets will shatter their shield much sooner than blasters.

    4. Idead No.5: Burrowing Gidrah

      At random intervals these Gidrah will dig into the ground and continue towards the base like moles, they are invisible to most turrets but are blocked by walls because they have deep foundations. They pop up to attack the walls where they can be shot. Blast mines and rockets can still hurt them while burrowed.

    5. Idea No.6: Cowardly Gidrah

      These are fast moving and weak Gidrah that will avoid turrets at all costs and will target undefended structures, they will only approach a turret if a) there are no unguarded structures b) there are a lot of them bunched together. When they are in close proximity to other Gidrah they move faster and are braver, forming clusters of fast moving Gidrah or Gidrah trains.

    6. Idea No.7: Thieving Gidrah

      These Gidrah have observed how the humans gather crystals and they also like shiney things so what they do is attack crystal deposits and refineries instead of the base and then attempt to leave the map with your hard earned cash. Players who don’t defend their mining operations run the risk of financial loss at the end of the mission if they’re not careful.

    7. Idea No.8 Battering Ram Gidrah

      These are huge lumbering Gidrah in the shape of a battering ram. They are stupid and head straight for the base, any walls they encounter are smashed in a few hits as they have a bonus attack vs. walls. Mines are effective at stumbling these Siege Gidrah.

    8. Idea No.9 Bomb Gidrah

      These are weak, fast moving Gidrah that attempt to throw them selves at walls and turrets causing them selves to explode and damaging everything around them. Observant commanders will target these Gidrah first to avoid severe damage to his structures.

    9. Idea No.10 Spawning Gidrah

      These huge, slow moving Gidrah spawn more tiny Gidrah every few seconds, if left unattended can pose a significant threat to the base defences. The best strategy for these is to build turrets near the spawn points on the maps to catch them early and stop them spawning more Gidrah.

    10. OMG you know what, all of the ideas are too complex and will make the game stupid, there will then be a ninja brain and sshit instead of just their dumb brain, clever brain, tactical brain

      and would it be too much to…

    11. I duno some of those might make it more interesting… don’t shoot him down for posting some suggestions.

      1. yeah your right I was pretty harsh, but realy, its clear this isint how the game should be made
        and again 10 posts?

        1. Ok I just actully read them all, as I had said much to complex, and smart although these 2 striked me as a possiblility

          2: Jumping Gidrah This could actully fit in the game I beleve, wouldnt make the gidrah’ smart

          No.8 Battering Ram Gidrah with polishing this could work

          These are huge lumbering [b]Gidrah in the shape of a battering ram.[/b] One word, no
          [b]They are stupid and head straight for the base,[/b] thats what they do right now…
          The rest just gives them their differences.
          any walls they encounter are smashed in a few hits as they have a bonus attack vs. walls. Mines are effective at stumbling these Siege Gidrah.

          the No.6: Cowardly Gidrah is pretty much just the tactical brain dudes.
          ninja needs polishing before it can be mentioned here, (is overpowerd) but it has purpous
          everything else will kill the game
          I hope tags work :l

          1. I think posting replies to my own post groups them nicely, and really I wrote them down as they came to me. Show me an edit button and I might have done it differently (or not).

            I think the ninja gidrah are the best of them all and are really no different from wraiths as they can’t be hit by anything other than capacitors (same goes for Gidlets) This way there are more tactical choices that don’t require a whole new turret type to deal with them. Simply place turrets at 90 degrees will stop them side stepping or use more close range shotgun turrets. Besides, who made you decide how the game should or shouldn’t be made? These are ideas from a designer’s point of view.

            1. well I guess your right about that I shouldnt be deciding for the developers
              but as I said before it struck me as it wouldnt be fitting with the game, being too complex after hearing some other plans from the devlopers
              and yes I think your right I made a mistake with ninja, a gidrah genus that has good reflexes and can dogde bullets, I can picture that, it wouldnt destroy the game
              also im wondering about what you said about mines, if I were a ninja, I would not just step on a lump in the ground, it would need large clusters of mines to hit them
              I didnt mention before but thieveing gidrah makes them too smart nuff said

              1. Maybe ninja are too light to set off large mines but I’m going by the idea that mines are undetectable (which is why no Gidrah avoid them) and even ninja will be hard pressed to dodge an explosion after setting one off.

  41. A few UI notes:

    Screen shaking due to exploding buildings slows the game down a lot on my machine, especially when the creeps get into a patch of abandoned refineries and a lot of them are going down at once. You might want to include an option to reduce the level of screen shaking and/or other effects.

    The building menu and other UI elements create areas of the screen where buildings cannot be placed. This can be especially annoying when an important feature is near the edge of the map, so that the spot covered by the [zoom to base] or [cancel build] button would actually be a sensible place for a turret. One possible solution to this would be to include a hotkey to hide the UI elements so you can build stuff under them, or you could have the UI elements minimized into the corners of the screen by default and have the player throw the cursor into a corner to bring up the UI. Another, probably simpler, would be to allow the map to scroll a bit further — add “dummy” tiles around the edge of the map where you can’t place stuff, but can scroll, so that all the real tiles can be scrolled to somewhere where they’re not covered by the UI. A third possibility would be to separate the UI from the map entirely, have the map view in the center and the UI around it (so that the “edge of the map” doesn’t overlap the UI). In that case, it would be better to have the UI on the sides rather than the bottom, so that the map window is more square.

    Currently, backtracking to a previous level requires quitting to the main menu. Please add more [back] buttons to make it easier to back out and choose another level, for example: planet select ← level select ← level intro ← research menu.

  42. One other possible bug, I don’t know if this is intentional or not, but certain structures can be built on top of others, the new building squishing the old. In particular, the two types of barricades can erase each other, which makes painting a mixed barrier a mixed bag — if your hand slips, you might overwrite a line of steel barricades with concrete ones, when what you meant to do was layer them.

  43. Love the game but the lack of communication is disturbing, hows about a few more entries occasionally to let us who have bought the game know you are still alive and coding ?

    The last update was on the 28th, nearly a month ago and nowt said about the next update… Has there been some set backs ? Delays ? Issues ? HDD crashed and the source has gone ?

    Dont be shy now and let us know whats going on.


    1. Lack o’ communication!! We’re busy, that’s why! 🙂 Actually I was going to do a brand new shiny blog post tomorrow to tell you what we’ve been working on. The Mars release is still scheduled for the 30th. A quick rundown of the bits I’ve been doing would be (so far):

      Fixed all known exceptions except GL drivers and saved game problem
      Increase memory: 160mb max heap
      Fixed: can build weaker barricades on top of stronger barricades – oops!
      Building things on top of aliens now damages the building (and may blow it up completely before it’s even built)
      Turrets to target aliens they’re better at killing preferentially
      Make levels where aliens come from all sides slightly easier
      Max level only set if a level is completed
      Wraiths fade in slowly as they approach their target
      Disruptor now has range increased very slightly by scanners
      Lasers and rockets now have greater initial range and greater range increase per scanner
      Earth boss guest appearance on Mars 5
      Anatomical research now yields a +1 bonus to armour piercing for blaster rounds
      Shotgun and assault cannon rounds now have a little bit of armour piercing
      Mines, lasers, rockets, smartbombs and disruptors now ignore armour
      Lasers now penetrate all aliens in their path
      Fixed: Destroyed buildings not updating nearby buildings (silos + factories?)
      Add keyboard tooltips to “shop” popup
      Show keyboard tooltips a bit longer
      Fixed: turrets can now see aliens past obstacles which can be shot over (such as craters)
      Bezerk now instantly reloads all turrets
      Fixed: Money displayed on Moon level select is actually Earth money – should be Moon money!

      1. its been a month? gawd im awfully paitiant I bet its notch putting out all those updates on minecraft

        wait what? disrupters?
        ive also seen you talk about factories did you meen refinerys?
        10 days!
        10 days!
        also great idea on reusing earth boss,
        ever think of adding 10 levels?
        although that could be bad as you would upgrade, buy everything and it would be boring by then :l to pull off extra levels would be adding a whole new buy screen when going to their galaxy?

        1. it seems im the only obsessed person here, as im checking for new posts/comments 5 times a day xD

    1. soli! you killed the conversation
      anyway just to comment… 8 days WOOHOO
      cant wait 🙁

          1. great 😀
            ohey ur the 100 comment,
            that meens im 101’th 😀 this calls for celebration

              1. I am hoping for a forum myself so we could talk specifics easier without being bogged down in a huge number of comments.

                1. A forum’s on the to-do list. We used to have one, a while back… but it got hacked completely. Bloody phpBB and all its bugs.

  44. 3 days now just 3 days
    wait no, on your timezone, 2 days 😀
    cant wait guys, I gotta combat the wraiths and gidlets show em nothing can stop us 😀

  45. Allright, I know its hort notice but I thinkmaby the spreader and the assault cannon might be over powered, making the game easy

    2 days still q.q

    1. Earthlings! Your puny spreader cannon and assault cannon are as no match for the might of our MARTIAN TROOPS! Tremble as our ARMOURED TICKS advance pitilessly on your ineffective weaponry! Quail as the ghosts of our long-dead heroes sail past your blind sensors unharmed by your feeble blaster fire!

  46. soon, so soon. I know once I get off of work I will be sitting here refreshing the page on the 30th. 😀

  47. ahh playing n64 games just aint cutting it I cant wait any longer 🙁
    just one day now 😀

    1. Well, in about 29 hours or so from now. Assuming all goes well – no point releasing bug-filled lemon. We’ll let you know if everything goes to plan on the night 🙂

        1. 🙁 I was looking forward to this so bad 🙁
          I might have to wait for tomorrow :l unless timezones save me 😀

            1. How is it going? I want to get it as soon as there are the Mars missions as I already finished the rest…

              1. so… should I wait for a lifesaver or go to bed dissapointed, getting kinda late now 🙁

                  1. Man, you guys are in the wrong time zone if it’s getting late, only 7 pm where I’m at. Even still, if we have to wait until tomorrow, so be it, better to have it later than sooner so it’s all good ya know?

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