Prettier fire, skins UI, WASD controls and more

Another beefy week! Like, if this was a pastrami sandwich, the beef would be piled several inches high and you’d have trouble fitting it into your mouth. But it would taste sooo very good. (If you’re a vegetarian, I guess you should imagine seitan instead of beef. Is a huge mouthful of seitan an appealing notion? I really don’t know.)

ANYWAY, let’s talk about some of the highlights. First, we finally have a proper UI for selecting plane skins! Unfortunately, we still don’t have a bunch of skins for you to actually choose from, but that will come in the future. Most of those skins, which are purely aesthetic, will be sold for $ in some way or other to help fund development of the game, but we *might* also make some of them rare loot drops in some form or another. We’re still thinking about it.

(The Gold Assault, for those who earned it during the closed alpha, is now categorized as a skin. If you have it, you will see it! Existing Gold Assault planes should continue to exist, but please let us know if that got broken somehow. There’s also a new Old Faithful skin that you can see but can’t unlock for the time being.)

Second, we finally got around to improving many of the ancient fire projectiles and other fire effects throughout the game. The fire dungeon in particular is lookin’ might fine. What say you?

Third, the tutorial has been polished a bunch. Hints no longer repeat needlessly; art has been added and improved; new helpful hints have been added, etc. We’re feeling like this might be good enough for now. Yay, one step closer to beta!

Fourth, the `~` drop inventory command is a bit smarter: it will only drop items that are unusable, lower tier than equipped, or duplicates.

Fifth, as an experiment, we’ve added purely aesthetic, subtle animations to the beach zone that are intended to make them feel a bit more alive. This first experiment is intended to evoke low-flying aircraft far below you, but if ya’ll like how it looks, we can potentially try other experiments in other territories – it doesn’t necessarily have to always be low-flying aircraft.

Lastly, we’ve switched to WASD controls as our default. Please note that if you haven’t rebound a key, that key will get bound to the new default, so if you’ve bound half your keys, then the other half might be changing unceremoniously on you now. We apologize for the temporary annoyance! You can either Reset To Defaults to quickly change things, or just rebind all your keys manually (“O” is still options). The new defaults are:

  • W – superspeed
  • A,D – left, right
  • S – maneuver
  • J – fire
  • K – secondary fire
  • N,M,comma, period – quick chat
  • C – teleport, drop item (in inventory mode)
  • V – open inventory

The default controller bindings have been changed, as well!

And there are many other notable changes this week!

  • Space dungeon environment art update
  • Fire dungeon environment art update
  • `/tp` is now case insensitive
  • Ambassador’s smoke particle artifacts have been fixed
  • Yet more memory optmization in server
  • Mission complete/item upgrades/hint texts dont overlap anymore
  • Updated doctor octo model
  • Changed the color on the highlands1 minions
  • Color and implementation on robo bomber (last highlands 1 minion)
  • Fixed zfighting on some various objects (storage depot in nexus, and mountains art)
  • Shrunk orange trees
  • Fixed ugly transition between city and sea
  • Raptor mine damage has been increased by +50%
  • Some of the less interesting untiered guns have been made mechanically more interesting
  • You might see a fireball in the game at some point