Incoming Sprouts Detected


Wolcum yole! Christmas lurks just around the corner, ready to pounce on unsuspecting credit cards and weakened bank accounts. To alleviate the suffering just a teeny, tiny, weeny bit, here is a new version of Revenge of the Titans, v1.80.14, which in a few days’ time you will discover has a special Christmas treat in it.

Here are the download links (except for you Humble Bundle types, you need to go back to your Humble Bundle download links and get them there. And, er, wait a day or two for the caches to update first):

What’s New and Noteworthy?

The first thing half of you will notice is that the mouse handling is completely different. I realise that this is a fairly bold and risky thing to do to a fairly long-established control mechanism in a product that’s already very mature, but… it never really worked properly before, you see. It didn’t use the desktop mouse settings, it didn’t work with tablets, it didn’t work with some mouse drivers, it was quite frequently completely erratic in movement, and it also grabbed the mouse when you clicked on the window which is kinda rude and doesn’t behave nicely in windowed mode when it comes to alt-tabbing.

So now the mouse is no longer captured by the window, and you use either the left or right buttons to scroll the screen by click-and-drag. The right mouse button has a tiny sensitivity threshold on it, which means it should still respond sensibly to its original functions (picking up buildings to build, cancelling operations), whereas the left mouse button will immediately drag. The left mouse button of course won’t drag if what you’re clicking on would otherwise have some other effect – for example, attempting to drag whilst in range of a capacitor isn’t going to work – you need to use the right mouse button.

The reason for allowing the right mouse button in drags as well is so that you can go into build mode and still scroll the screen about with the mouse like you used to. Or smartbomb mode, etc. It takes a little bit of getting used to – especially after 4 years of the old way of just waving the mouse about – but after a few games it’s just second nature again. Of course you can still use the cursor keys or WASD to scroll anyway if that’s what butters your bread.

The next thing I’ve changed is the display context handling. Er, what’s that, you ask? Well, put it this way: if you had driver problems before, they might have gone away now and the game is more likely to run. There were a lot of issues with the nice resizable window we introduced in v1.80.13, and hopefully they’ve all gone away now, although sadly with the loss of the minimise and maximise buttons.

The powerup spawn effects (and building attack effects, etc) now use chunky fat lines to draw, and because they’re now being drawn the same way as everything else in the game, they should be proper fast on all drivers. A few people had problems with the game suddenly dropping to about 2fps whenever a powerup spawned. This should now be fixed. It looks prettier, too, I think.

Finally there’s a subtle change to the way animation works, and screen transitions. You probably noticed on the screen transitions that some sprites were rendered before others, just for a single frame, so we’d have this sort of partial display which was just noticeable. This especially irritated me because I’ve seen it about 100,000 times, and it’s been bothering me for several years (yes, really). Well, I finally got around to fixing it.

Please let us know ASAP if there are any odd issues with the new version!

So Long, Desura

This part of the post is likely to attract all manner of hate and flames, but it has to be said: Desura wasn’t working for us. We spend just as much time and stress figuring out how to release software on the Desura platform as Steam, but unfortunately make literally 1/1000th of the money. So little in fact I don’t think Desura have even managed to pay us any money yet. It doesn’t make sense for us to support Desura any more, and so we’re not. Don’t get me wrong – it’s a great client, their hearts are in the right place, but… we’re on Steam.

So my humble apologies to anyone with their eggs in the Desura basket. Contact us if you’ve got any issues.

Ultrabundle refresh being prepared

If this release of Revenge goes to plan, that is, generally seems to work properly, we’ll do a refresh of the Ultrabundle games using the same code, which will fix the same issues, etc. Fingers crossed.

50 thoughts on 'Incoming Sprouts Detected'

  1. Thank you, thank you! I’ve been droning on about the mouse issue since forever. Hopefully now I’ll finally finish the campaign; I’ve been feeling guilty for not having done so by now.

  2. Great stuff. Luckily I’ve recently learnt to use the keyboard for my scrolling needs. But I’m sure to try out the new mouse hanlding. Awesome update as usually.

  3. What about the factories fix? The one where when you place droid factories, the round starts (and shouldn’t). You said it would be fixed in the “next” patch.

  4. I’m sad about the Desura version since Desura makes things very easy, have you considered Gameolith? They are very easy to work with and actually work with the humble bundle guys doing some of the Linux packages.

    1. We’re basically not considering anything. We’ve got Steam for Windows and Mac as a brilliant automatically updating distribution platform; the Humble Bundle provides massive exposure. What we really need is Minecraft-style auto-updating, so this is something I’m going to be working on in the new year.

      1. “We’ve got Steam for Windows and Mac ”

        I see.

        Pity I won’t be able to buy any more games from you guys then. It’s been fun.

          1. No, it is not. However, at the same time I’m glad Steel-Storm devs at least opted for Desura as their main distribution platform.

            1. Honestly, if you can’t be bothered to download a tar.gz then I can’t see you being bothered to get out a credit card to support us anyway. We mourn the loss of our 20 Desura customers over the past year. Case closed.

              1. With Desura I don’t even have to get out my credit card!

                Reason Desura sales are so low: You launched directly into the HIB, most people who are the type to use Desura, are also the type to be buying the HiB.

                Also, I can’t really be bothered to download a tar.gz anymore, but I’ve bought all of your games in the past.

                It wouldn’t be so bad if you weren’t screwing over those 20 people who DID buy it on Desura.

                1. We’d never screw over Desura customers – please just drop us a line if you’d like us to register you a Puppygames version instead.

                  In the meantime, the reason Desura’s sales are so low is a very complex set of reasons and not at all as simplistic as you might like to think. If I may leave this thought with you though: Steam has managed 50,000 sales in a slightly shorter period, with the same customers that turned up from the HIB. Marketing fail.

                  What Desura needs is a hit exclusive game. Revenge of the Titans is not it.

                  1. You can call it what you will, and it is your right to do with your game as you will, yet it will not change the fact that by sticking solely to Steam you’re again making it difficult for Linux users.

                    The “Minecraft Auto-update” is a good idea, and if you do incorporate it then I see absolutely no reason not to leave the game up on Desura as well.

                    1. I have a funny question. Why using evil corporation #A (Steam) is worse than using evil corporation #B (Desura) ? Both are problematics for the same reason. It feel like using google+ and shunning Facebook.

                    2. Wait, what? How is Desura (or even steam for that matter) evil? Desura has a Linux version, NO DRM, and will soon be open source.

                    3. Well, for the exact same reason that Facebook and google are evil, even if watered down by the scale : they do know way too much in your personnal life (gaming life for Steam and Desura), and thoses informations are way too sensitive to give them to any corporation.

                      Maybe Desura have taken specific care to avoid recording your gaming history and do not sell it to anyone, but I don’t tend to suppose corporation don’t do something that would earn them a lot of money.

                    4. Ah, so you don’t have any specific complaints, you’re just the kind of person who just always thinks “companies are evil”. I see.

                    5. Don’t forget that these guys are running a business and as such need sales to pay their bills, feed their families, etc. They aren’t running a business to keep twenty Desura Linux users happy.

                      If a sales channel isn’t working then it’s perfectly reasonable to pull out and concentrate your energies on one that is.

              2. Sorry, I’ve meant ‘no it is not’ as in not a great loss to you. Really, no reason to get angry about.

  5. this current version of Revenge of the Titans there are weird screen artifacts when scrolling over the map “ghost windows”, i can’t see any of the power ups, only the numbers. and a huge part of the tech seem to be missing – i can’t view any of the building add ons i research.

    1. @sherfu_marcus Sounds like a java problem. You might want to go into your add/remove programs and uninstall all current versions of java. Then go download the latest one. If that doesn’t work try removing that and installing java 7 (follow the link on the side when you are about to get the latest java 6) try 64bit if you have the OS for it–works great for me.

      1. it’s not a Java problem (we don’t use the system JVM). It does sound more likely to be a corrupted download sort of problem though. Any chance of screenshots?

      2. Actually now I think of it that sounds like the slightly broken release we initially uploaded. Might well have been secretly fixed and re-uploaded. Have another go at downloading and see if it goes away.

  6. what have you done about the difficulty? the demo was hard, and i havent got the game at all yet, and i dont want to buy somthing i cant beat

    1. The last patch (1.80.13) has introduced a slightly more forgiving difficulty curve. But basically the same advice holds as before: you are entirely in control of the difficulty anyway. Spend the money you have, don’t hoard it and die a rich man. And HIT THE EASIER LEVEL BUTTON as soon as you find it too hard!!

  7. Just wanted to say thanks for still doing updates to ROTT. I feel it’s been a finished product for a long time.

  8. Any chance of the Steam version having the Linux libraries included ( and so on) so that it can be run through Steam with our own JVM? Or are there more differences between each version than I know…

    If it’s possible, that’d be a great alternative to Desura.

      1. I think flibit means that Linux users could launch the game outside of Steam from a natively installed JVM. This would more or less be equivalent to the way that Linux binaries for SteelStorm are distributed via Steam with the Windows version.

  9. If you guys do a respin of Droid Assault so I can actually play it on my Ubuntu system, I’d be a happy penguin. I considered purchasing the ultrabundle, but having games that only work great on my Windows system doesn’t cut it for me. 95% of the time I’m in front of my Thinkpad, and it’s running 11.04 at the moment.

  10. This isn’t related, but I have a couple questions. Is there any news on the Ultra Bundle being released on steam? Also, would you guys ever consider raising the resolution of ROTT or the Ultra Bundle games?

    1. ‘Scoming soon! Just got lost in the noise of the Xmas sales etc. We’ve got Titan Attacks all ready and waiting to go, and Chaz is just working on a neato video for Droid Assault.

  11. As sad as it is, that you had to leave Desura (I’m a Linux gamer, too), I definately understand your reasons. If it’s too much work and too little usefulness, I’d stop supporting it, too. Have you at least talked to the guys, on where you see the problems?

    Have you considered trying the Ubuntu Software Center? The process is supposedly very easy. Although I’d love to get some stats from the Braid guy or 2Dboy on the number of sales they were able to get from USC. Maybe call them up and ask if it’s worth it. I remember reading an article by the BEEP guy with a lot of praise for the USC process.

  12. Thanks for the update. It’s too bad about Desura but it’s definitely no competition to Steam yet. It would be nice if it was though.

  13. Just found out about this and I’m bitterly disappointed. Even if you only sold 20 copies on Desura, you’re screwing over 20 of your customers. They didn’t buy it from your site, they bought it from Desura because they wanted to buy it from Desura.

    It’s all fine saying “It’s ok, we’re still on Steam!”, but this kind of dick move is another small push in the direction of Valve having a DD monopoly. Competition is good and you shouldn’t have released your game in the HIB with Desura keys if you didn’t want to keep the game on Desura.

    You’re not just screwing over the 20 people who bought it on Desura, you’re also annoying the hell out of all of the Desura users who bought the HIB (of which I am one).

    1. I should just make a few things clear for you – we are not removing the game from Desura. We are just no longer going to sell the game through Desura or issue new updates through Desura. We are offering the few Desura customers who have paid for the game a free Puppygames registration. It’s not exactly screwing is it, mate.

      We didn’t really want Desura to carry the game in the first place from the HIB but we thought we’d give it a try and see how Desura did – it wasn’t us supplying keys, it was Humble Bundle Inc, and we didn’t even upload the game to Desura. Unfortunately despite this kickstart, Desura have performed 1000x worse than Steam. It’s a shame because I’d like Desura to succeed but they need some sort of hit exclusive game to do it, and Revenge of the Titans is not that game. I did speculate once that Mojang would probably be a prime candidate to buy up Desura and all its assets and use it to publish Minecraft through – along with everyone else’s games. That’d be a winner. Unfortunately it didn’t happen.

      1. While I understand your reasoning I am still very disappointed with this move.
        Steam is not on all platforms, and I paid a lot more money for your game.

        As an almost exclusive Linux user I find going to web sites to download updates very annoying. One of the big advantages of Linux is that though the packaging system you can keep all your software up to date. With Desura we now finally have something similar for commercial games.

        You should really consider giving Desura another shot once you have a new game which you did not previously release by HIB, then look if its worth it…

  14. Do you intend to put your games on Ubuntu Software Center? (just asking)

    It’s okay for me if you don’t put your games on somewhere (Desura or Ubuntu SC) but in your site. As long as you support Linux, it’s a big help.

    1. We’ve been asked to put them in the Ubuntu Software Centre but really it’s the same problem as Desura – just another middleman that’s going to cost us time and effort, keep our customers, take a huge chunk of the cash, and in the end, make bugger all money.

      While I’m at it the same goes for just about every other deployment method or platform out there.

      We’ve had a moderately successful retail outing with Iceberg Interactive, but only because we gave them extraordinarily excellent terms. But apart from direct sales, which are really the way forward if there’s ever to be any true success, it’s Steam FTW.

  15. Greetings from Ukraine!

    Will it be possible to include visible stats of a tower in next patches?

    I mean when you stack up a number of powerups to a tower, you don’t know what actual damage it does, how fast it shoots, how much ammo it has…etc. It would be very helpful if you can read stats just by pointing on a specific tower with a mouse. Now it’s not very convinient – you have to go to a to get this kind of info.

    (Sorry for clumsy english…:p)


    1. Hi Sparrow, I’m afraid we’ve no plans to put that in – you should really just get a “feel” for a turret’s power. Most of this game is played by “feel” rather than hard stats. It’s too fast to sit and think about numbers.

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