Mars delayed a tiny bit!

Well, it’s midnight here in the UK and 1am in the dark cupboard in which Chaz lurks, and we’ve still got stuff to do on the game! And I’ve got work tomorrow morning as per usual, and I’m too tired to do a release now and bugger it all up!

So… hey what’s that, over there?


Yes, it looks like this deadline has sailed past us and we’re not ready to release the Mars levels just yet. It does look like a weekend release is on the cards though, as what’s left is not a huge amount of work. Our humble apologies for being late! But, you know, better that it’sĀ good, rather than a bug-ridden heap of poo, I think.

Here’s what we’ve got so far, new-feature wise:

  • Add keyboard tooltips to “shop” popup
  • Allow player to navigate back from the story screen to the level selection screen
  • Anatomical research now yields a +1 bonus to armour piercing for blaster rounds
  • Back button on research
  • Back button on story screen
  • Bezerk now instantly reloads all turrets
  • Building things on top of aliens now damages the building (and may blow it up completely before it’s even built)
  • Collectors cheaper
  • Conditional stories that appear depending on what you have or have not researched
  • Difficulty adjusted at start of level based on number of attempts
  • Difficulty attenuation now is itself attenuated as gidrahs are destroyed
  • Difficulty now calculated based on current cash and value of buildings in play
  • Disruptor now has range increased very slightly by scanners
  • Earth boss guest appearance on Mars 5
  • Erase attempts numbers past last ended level
  • Increase boss speed and hitpoints
  • Increase memory: 160mb max heap
  • Lasers and rockets now have greater initial range and greater range increase per scanner
  • Lasers no longer sweep: they were far too powerful!
  • Levels now randomised completely every game
  • Make levels where aliens come from all sides slightly easier
  • Max level only set if a level is completed
  • Mid-spawners
  • Mines, rockets, smartbombs and disruptors now ignore armour
  • Multiple stories per level
  • Nerf turret fire rate ever so slightly
  • Nerfed droids fire rate
  • Optimise laser beam to use quadtree for collision detection
  • Optimise turret target acquisition to use quadtree and delay retries
  • Show keyboard tooltips a bit longer
  • Silos cheaper
  • Spiders
  • Ticks
  • Turrets to target aliens they’re better at killing preferentially
  • Wraiths fade in slowly as they approach their target

Here’s the bugs fixed so far:

  • Fixed: all known exceptions except GL drivers and saved game problem
  • Fixed: Destroyed buildings not updating nearby buildings (silos + factories?)
  • Fixed: Laser offset
  • Fixed: Money displayed on Moon level select is actually Earth money – should be Moon money!
  • Fixed: Turrets show wrong range in ghost mode
  • Fixed: a laser sometimes keeps on missing target (was actually just not hurting it)
  • Fixed: can build weaker barricades on top of stronger barricades – oops!
  • Fixed: gidrahs speed up when the level ends
  • Fixed: ingame menu resets mouse pointer
  • Fixed: map generates forever
  • Fixed: Fullscreen/large/med/small window selection is buggy
  • Fixed: turrets can now see aliens past obstacles which can be shot over (such as craters)
  • Fixed: decoys still not working

Unfortunately, we’ve still got all this to do:

  • Tweak stories for Earth (gidrah stats, extra story entries)
  • Stories for Mars
  • Mars colours
  • Mars roads
  • Mars boss death animation

and these really important bugs to fix:

  • Blast mines set off straight away when painting them
  • Ticklets can spawn on top of buildings, and subsequently get stuck
  • Occasional strange lag/slowdown
  • Level generated without any crystals
  • Strange problems with pathfinder killing aliens
  • Pathfinder seems to be allowed to overrun its maximum think time

33 thoughts on 'Mars delayed a tiny bit!'

  1. YESSS I just refreashed to see if any new comments came up and its here its here!
    Im going to read it then post again šŸ˜€

      1. that was just the title… sorry about the multi posts but I just read the whole thing
        you told us lots of this allready, in the same words too šŸ™
        ticklets? typo?
        There are so many things you have said and I dont know what they are šŸ™
        The Big random plate thing in the buy screen, can you get it yet?

  2. Thanks for the update. Take your time and make it great, just don’t take too much time.

  3. good to know, there’s some work going on.
    but a little disappointing too, cause there were things promised (especially in fact I have, and others too, purchased it already as a beta) you cant comply to.

    anyway, keep going. hope to see some great improvements soon.

  4. Truth is, he got old.



    Back when he was young he would have managed to solve these bugs and upload while simultaneously checking out the slave girls of planet XXIV.

  5. looks cool

    a few comments

    will lasers be cheaper now that they don’t sweep? As a weapon they are extremely expensive.

    I don’t get why you would need silos? Even if cheaper they take up two research slots (one research a turn) and all they do is allow you collectors to have more in them meaning less clicks to drain a crystal.

    In my mind there are two goals of a given level. 1. Kill all enemies with the least cost. 2. Collect all crystals with the least cost. If you have weapons or collectors that are idol for long stretches you haven’t spent your money wisely. (this is somewhat challenging due to the fact that the enemies react to your structures and take different routes)

    1. Lasers are extremely powerful. They can inflict up to 360 points of damage with a single beam (or typically more like about 180 ish). Apart from blasting through a whole line of titans when placed strategically dead on to an advancing column, their worth against bosses is where they really shine. Although, ahahaa, not so useful against the Mars boss, which is impenetrable to laser fire šŸ™‚

      Silos are a) on the path to collectors and b) each silo increases the amount of money that can be extracted from a crystal by 50% (up to a maximum of 200%). This isn’t in the 1.2 release; it’s a new feature for Mars. In other words, it’s like tripling your money! You have to be cunning to fit them in efficiently because they increase in cost each time you put one down.

      1. sounds cool I misunderstood the nerf to lasers.

        I have never seen collectors myself I thought silos where a dead end research wise so I haven’t been going that route. What are collectors?

        1. Collectors automatically harvest your factories for you. So you can concentrate on turrets instead! And then you can get an autoloader, which does the turrets for you. So you can concentrate on strategy instead! Until the wraiths arrive anyway…

            1. so is that what the thing that looks like a rocket is? under the refinery, I know what almost everything is now šŸ˜€ except the thing under the first mine, which I think is a bigger stronger mine the thing under rockets which im guessing is an orbitual nuke and now the thing under refinerys that looks like a rocket, is a colecter.

              But you said factoryies before, where would it go?
              It could be a typo seening as refinerys used to be factories.

  6. A weekend release? Yes, definately, unless of course you like the idea of me (and everyone else especially wolf_alex) poking you repeatedly with a VERY sharp stick šŸ™‚ I cannot wait!!!!!

    1. Who said anything about a stick? Im pretty much using a big huge knife… attached to a machinegun…
      But yeah when I made that post I had been realy excited at the time, and got diapointed, deep down I knew they should take their time with this project, so its worth it šŸ˜€

      Oh btw guys, multiblaster is a little underpowerd wouldnt you think?

      1. Not so much underpowered as too expensive. It will be $750 in the Mars release. Try putting a few upgrade towers next to them… they respond rather better than ordinary blasters šŸ™‚

        1. I can’t deny it, that list of new features has me drooling even more… somebody get me a bib please!

        2. could you make it 5000 in the research screen, I havent had a chance to buy it due to its expense, and when I do, I cant use it :l

  7. Is there any way to turn off mouse acceleration in the game? It is frustrating when attempting to click precisely on the fly (all the time).

    Great game, by the way.

    1. hm there is no mouse acceleration in the game… but you can slow the mouse down a bit in the Options screen. It defaults to 3/10.

      1. Wow…I’d ask “are you sure” but I’m pretty sure you are. Maybe my system makes the mouse a bit sluggish.

        As a side note, I was going to complain about having my name and address show up each time on start-up, but then I thought about how that makes for a very interesting pirating deterrent–at least as far as sharing accounts goes. I’d hate to find out my name and address were available to hundreds of people of the pirating community all over the globe. So kudos to you–that’s pretty clever!

        And good luck with finishing Mars! I’m eagerly standing by!

        1. Think of it as “personalisation” šŸ˜‰ But we do fade it out after a few seconds so people can’t just crane over your shoulder and read your private details.

          We actively encourage you share the game with your close friends and family. Just not to randoms šŸ™‚

  8. Wait, wait, wait, waaaaaaaaait… “each silo increases the amount of money that can be extracted from a crystal by 50%”????????????????????????????

    Sorry about writing like an excited 14-year old, but are you saying that with a silo, you can effectively INCREASE the finite amount of money you can get from a level?

    Now I understand how some people claim that they have 40 000 at the end of some levels, while I struggle to get over 11 000…

    Guess I need to replay the game from the start AGAIN (not that I mind)…

    1. Yep šŸ™‚ And you’ll all have to play from the start again anyway because we’ve tweaked so much of it! And, er, the progress is incompatible with 1.3 as well.

      I can’t figure out how anyone’s got 40k at the end of a level though. At least not in the version I’ve got here! And the silos don’t do this in 1.2, they just enabled you to store more. Now they actually let you get more out of a single crystal too.

  9. Keep it up guys, it’ll all be worth it when you get to hit the build button for the final time.

    Make it the best you can.

    1. Fingers crossed. I’m actually looking forward to starting over, they say they tweaked it that much! Oh and Happy 4th everyone!

  10. I am looking forward to doing different research paths.

    I already don’t research cooling towers but putting off batteries does sound tempting. Scanners are too important to not research first though.

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