AI War 2 v0.873 Released! “Battlestation Overhaul”

Release notes here.

This works with existing savegames, but has the biggest impact on new ones.  This gets at another big batch of most-annoying-recently issues.

The list of things that are planned for the short term to address those bits is here, and the discussion that started it all is here.

So what’s new?

  • First up, there’s a new way to reduce AI Progress in the form of Major Data Centers… but the catch is that you have to hold the planet they are on.  The positive side is that their AIP reduction is HUGE.
  • In general there are also now a lot more data centers than there used to be, unless you were playing on difficulty 4 or below.
  • The number of battlestations and citadels on the map has dropped ENORMOUSLY.  Where it might have been several dozen of them previously, it’s now barely half a dozen in most cases (though you can make it add more in the lobby options if you want).
  • The battlestations were previously the only way to get more turrets and other defenses beyond the super-duper basics for your command stations, and this was… hard to manage as well as really annoying for players.
  • Battlestations still remain in a much smaller number because they are great for making beachheads or for AUGMENTING a choke point in your empire, but they are no longer the key way you get new turrets and defenses.
  • A new structure, the Global Command Augmenter, has been added to the game.  GCAs are something that you have to capture and hold the planet they belong to, but they give ALL of your command stations a bunch of new turrets and minefields and whatever else that are randomly rolled at the start of the campaign.
  • Basically the GCAs solve all of those “things are inconvenient by not being part of my main command station” issues, give you something new as a reason to capture and hold territory, and also really act as a force multiplier on your empire as a whole.
  • Soon there will also be the ability to hack them so that you don’t have to hold them (lower cost) or even capture them at all (higher cost), but we didn’t have time for that in this release.
  • There are also some notable new ways to get science and hacking points in general, now.  Previously Distribution Nodes were kind of useless and just gave you metal (which is generally not that exciting or in that short of supply), as did astro trains.  Now you get science and/or hacking points from those, which is extremely valuable and exciting instead.
  • The odds of your eyeballs being seared in by strobing lightning and/or grenade visual effects is now a lot lower, as those are now smaller in number but also a lot stronger.  Actually both of these got way more useful in general, with bonuses against stacks, etc.
  • AI Guardians also no longer seed so plentifully as before — it was quite ridiculous on the mark 6 and 7 planets, mainly because originally the game hadn’t expected those sorts of planets to exist.
  • The AI also now has its own version of turrets, which are lower-range by far, and thus their battlefields feel a lot more segmented now.
  • Also the AI uses far fewer turrets, and uses more monochromatic turrets on planets and near specific guard posts in general.  This makes it a lot easier for you to plan meaningful assaults, and also makes it so that their guard posts and strikecraft do more of the heavy lifting.  Turrets were always meant to be more of a player thing.
  • There are a variety of player structures that previously died to remains, letting you rebuild them infinite numbers of times if you lost them.  We’re going to add in an option later on to let you have that behavior again, but for now they die permanently AND are way more robust (3x the health and shields).  The idea is for there to be some risk to you in the middle-game, but for these to not fall over like paper dolls.  More balance on these may be needed, but we want to experiment with more permadeath options in general that some players will enjoy and others will avoid.
  • Strikecraft in general now have 3x the health and 2x the attack power that they used to, letting them hold their own as the backbone of everyone’s fleets a lot more.  This is a lot more like the first game was, but we may need to tune this more over time.
  • There are also now sliders in the lobby that let you adjust the relative strengths of strikecraft, turrets/guard posts, and frigates/guardians.  We’re looking for feedback on our defaults so that things feel as ideal as possible, but we’re also recognizing that some people want slower or faster games, and so these options allow for people to set that up no matter what.
  • Golems and Arks are now rare, and only accessible in the late game or very late midgame.  We’re going to be making them even more powerful and come with some extra costs, soon, based on the plans here.  Definitely a great idea by Kesseleth, and we’re partway through implementation.  This also means that the starting fleets now just all use transports rather than golems or Arks, which again emphasizes your strikecraft more.
  • You can also now read about what the various Warden and Hunter fleet types do, which was actually informative even to me.
  • And there are a variety of other small things in here.  This was a big release!

More to come soon.  Enjoy!

Problem With The Latest Build?

If you right-click the game in Steam and choose properties, then go to the Betas tab of the window that pops up, you’ll see a variety of options.  You can always choose most_recent_stable from that build to get what is essentially one-build-back.  Or two builds back if the last build had a known problem, etc.  Essentially it’s a way to keep yourself off the very bleeding edge of updates, if you so desire.

The Usual Reminders

Quick reminder of our new Steam Developer Page.  If you follow us there, you’ll be notified about any game releases we do.

Also: Would you mind leaving a Steam review for some/any of our games?  It doesn’t have to be much more detailed than a thumbs up, but if you like a game we made and want more people to find it, that’s how you make it happen.  Reviews make a material difference, and like most indies, we could really use the support.



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