Game reaches Beta, v. 0.8 now live

The Early Access version of Satellite Reign has reached v. 0.8 and is now officially in “Beta” state, which means that it is feature complete. The remaining dev time will be spent on polish and bug fixes. 5LS have also announced that the game in its final, 1.0 version will be released on 28. August. Along with this announcement, we get the following short teaser for the release trailer:



Nightly builds

5LS have set up a mechanism to automatically upload the current nightly build of Satellite Reign to Steam. You can opt-in to this if you want to; go to the “Properties” of the game inside your Steam library and choose “nightly autobuild” in the “betas” tab. This was announced by Mike on Twitter today:

@MikeDiskett: I just made #SatelliteReign nightly build automatically upload to steam ‘beta’ opt in build. Its “warts and all” game development now.

This gives the adventurous people among you the chance to live on the cutting edge of the game, and see all the new stuff first, but don’t expect this to be as smooth as regular releases.



Game updated to v0.62, new district “The Grid”

The game has been updated to v0.62 and has now officially reached “Alpha” state – with a “Beta” apparently to follow rather soon. There is a lot of new stuff stuff in this release, including a completely new district called “The Grid”. Here is an impression of what the new district looks now:

Screenshot_2015-05-16_21-28-54

And here is a video showing off some of the new stuff:



City map published

5LS have published a full map of the city in which the game takes place. Here is a snippet:

The original in zoomable form is available here.

The developers have also announced that work has been ongoing on porting the game from Unity3D 4 to 5, and promised a new game update “in a couple of weeks”.



Game update released on Steam, now version 0.4

A new update has gone live on Steam, and it’s a big one! An entire new district, new UI design and a lot of other stuff. Release notes here.

Here’s a video that shows off some of the new stuff:



Patch 0.2.11, huge changelist

A new update for Satellite Reign has gone live on Steam, which brings the game to version 0.2.11. The changelist:

We’ve got lots of new fixes and changes for Satellite Reign. The update is now live for Windows. Mac OS and Linux builds will be available in the next 24 hours.

Please note: there have been changes to the way missions progress is recorded, so some saves may list certain missions as being incomplete. This will not affect your previously-awarded weapons, gear or agent progression. You will be able to repeat the missions and attain extra loot though!

Changes

Mission action “give items” now being saved.
Setup missions to now display what items have been previously awarded.
Going back into completed facilities will now re-award lost prototypes.
Removed splash screen tutorials.
Added some missing missions descriptions and message broadcasts.
Fix for re-spawning and being able to re-trigger tutorials.
Fix bug where items were not being awarded after loading.
Fix mission “folder path” when clicking on mission messages.
Fix bug where agents will have no weapons if they re-spawn after their corpse is de-spawned.
Fix researchers not saving on current research item.
New researchers will now automatically replace external researchers.
Added 3 leg augmentations revolving around sprinting.
Added items shield boost and shield re-charger.
Stopped adding targets to battle when you try to shoot them.
Fix wanted-level reducing (now reduces at 2 speeds: when in danger and not)… UI is still coming.
Fixed Up-cursor key not scrolling the camera.
Fix bug with tracker sprite masking madness.
Police and Corporate soldiers shouldn’t want to kill each other any more.
Fix bug where wanted and suspicious values were not being reset on death.
Info can now be purchased about what items will be rewarded from breaching facilities, once the info-broker has been found.
Fix disappearing laser-uzi bug.
Setup missions to show rewards (only items are set up so far).
Changed siphon amounts for ATMs (now gives slightly more money).
Reduced info costs for missions.
Shuffled research costs for items.
Changed research costs so it is now cheaper per-researcher, but items need more researchers to complete.
Fixed bug where agent was not being spawned from Police Station.
Added lots of new items and weapons (some only first-pass).
Increased XP for stealthing through compounds (also added progression stealth XP increase).
Fix bug where ‘Teleport All’ on relay beacons only worked once all agents were rescued.
Added ground plate to ziplines to make it more obvious where to click.
Fix agents dying and falling into cover (now always fall backwards).
Power generators and doors can now be Hardwired (doors require a Hardwire point to be Hardwireable).
Able to force-use Hardwire boxes now.
Add chance to be electrocuted when force-interacting with Hardwire boxes.
Added chance to fall from zipline when force-using.
Added ability to force-hack terminals.
Added chance to fail on force-hacked terminals (stuns agents and calls reinforcements).
Added varying chance to fail based on level of terminal/Hardwire box
More work on random missions.
Added fail info to info panel.
Reduce EMP resistance on agents.
Added 15 second grace-time after a wanted-level is added before it starts reducing.
Fix timers from turning into a full white square.
Increase size of terminal indicators and set up flashing sequence.

There are more changes, but Mike didn’t record them in our internal changes document, so now we’ll never know what he’s been doing for the past couple of weeks.

– Mitch



Patch 0.2.10 out

Release Notes (source):

We’ve got a new update for Satellite Reign available.

This update does include some significant changes to the Save/Load system. We’ve tried to make sure it is still backwards compatible with old saves, and it seems to be working in our testing. When an old save is detected, it will be slightly modified to work with the new system, which will update the timestamp on the file. If you have troubles with old saves, please send us your save file so we can identify the cause.

Also, we are aware of the heavy slowdown when loading. It will last for a few seconds while various things in the world are generated, and then return to normal.

On to the changelist!

New skills and items (all work-in-progress)
Distraction grenade.
Neural scramble.
Suppression.
Sniper setup.
Draw Fire.

General Changes
Setup re-spawn costs based on progression, items and skill points.
Reduce starting funds to 1000.
Setup new “Harden” skill VFX.
Slight reduction of ammo on all weapons.
Add charge indicator VFX to sniper-rifles.
Save Slots. Ten of them. YES, TEN!
Added a conversion step to convert old save format to new.
Simplified Save/Load system.
Go-to and Cover indicator that’s larger and fancier.
First pass at Clone Screen in the UI and agent customisation. Still very much work-in-progress.
Fixed health offset actually offsetting the health multiplier.
Setup multiple map states for ATMs and Relay Beacons
set everyone gets a pistol by default
fixed shield sizes
fixed being able to toggle enemy weapons
A Tutorial, noobies rejoice!
Cars can u turn, Hover Style.
Prep work for streaming assets.
Fixed clicking on cover when you meant the nearer scenery.

Plus lots of work to other systems and districts yet to be unveiled!

Mac and Linux builds are lagging behind a little bit, but should be available within the next 24 hours. Apologies!

Thanks everyone to all of your feedback and bug reports. Keep them coming!

– Mitch



New patch out, v. 0.2.9.1

As announced here, a new patch has been released on Steam. Here are the details:

A new update is out just in time for the holidays!

– Cars now explode in an appropriate fashion. Use this to clear out traffic jams until the traffic system is less broken!
– Further fixes to save and load (saves from previous version should still work).
– Minimap is now resizable.
– Added ability to rebind keys. Press the ; (semicolon) key to bring up key-binding menu.
– Updates to environment dressing.
– Improved agent responsiveness to sprinting and entering/leaving cover.
– Added more tooltips to various UI elements.
– A special present from Lead Designer Chris at the bottom of the options menu.

Happy holidays to all of our players, and also happy birthday to Yasmin, our QA and customer service rep!

-Mitch.



Patch 0.2.9

A new patch has gone live on Steam, which brings the game to 0.2.9. It includes a ton of bugfixes and some new features. Full patch notes:

Update Version 0.2.9 Release Notes
18 DECEMBER – OUKRUK

NOTE: Lots of fixes have been put in place for the save game in this release. This does mean that previous saves will not work with the new version of the game.

Mac: There’s a known issue with some mac’s that we haven’t been able to recreate/fix yet where it doesn’t run in medium or fantastic quality, for now select “Older PC Quality” then in the options menu enable the settings suitable for your mac.

Bug fixes and gameplay changes:

Atm suspicion values fixed (no longer going into negatives)
Fix Infiltrators sword attack animations
Fix Infiltrators sword attack energy drain
Infiltrators sword attack charge distance increased to 15m
Melee kick distance reduced to 3m
Add District + Location Bonuses info in resource panel
Fix guard station not giving bonuses
Fix assassination bonus not working
Fix cctv slowdown not working (District level)
Decreased base cctv suspicion time to 3.5
Fix bug where cctv suspicion was climbing at half rate
Increased time for cctv cameras to stay suspicious before cooling down
Fix skills saving and loading
Fix not being able to run or sprint if the agent is already walking
Added vertical scale markers to status bars.
Added more user interface sound effects
Update quest logs to show all previous entries. (Collapsing individual entries still to come)
Fix not being able to spawn soldier with load and save bug.
Fix Load and Save of parked cars, fix traffic breaking after load game
Fix Brain Dead Civilians
Fix Cowering Civilians
Add Jobs and BasicInteraction to save System
Load And Save popus up a success/fail window
Fix Stuttering Enemies and repeated vocals
Stop Enemies seeing you through walls on occasion
Fix agents refusing to Move after reviving in cover
Fix 30 second pause when destroying some cover
Fix item association with facilities not saving and loading
Consolidated doctors and scientists into 1 “Researchers” category
Issue agent commands on mouse down rather than mouse up.
Orient Players to vertical when exiting car on a slope
Fix hijacked civs not using cover

Thanks again for all the input, videos and bug reports! They really help us figure out what some of the big problems are and how to fix them. :D
– Chris



Early Access release: Reactions and Discussions

A couple of days have passed since Satellite Reign has gone live as Early Access on Steam. Since then, interest in the game has spiked. A number of “first impression” articles have gone up around the web, twitter users are twittering their excitement, and the new discussion forum on Steam has seen a lot of action.

For example, @CThiefUK writes:

OK, @SatelliteReign definitely nails the feel of Syndicate so far. Well done chaps! […]

@JKashaar has this to say:

@SatelliteReign Congrats on the release! Finally played for the first time, loving it already! Very promising game :) Keep up the good work!

A consistent theme in the first reactions appear to be that this game looks great and has a lot of potential, but that it is indeed still very Early Access at this time. For example, the piece on Gamestar (German) asks whether the game is already worth buying. Their answer (my translation):

No, because too much of the gameplay elements are still missing. The controls and the interface are not yet mature, furthermore there are many bugs and significant performance problems. […] Therefore we recommend: Wait a few months and see how the project develops.

The reviewer even mentions it may be ”tight“ for the developers to release in the first half of 2015. However, it should be added that the reviewer has likely not seen all that the game has to offer at this point, as he reports that he was unable to advance after the first mission (rescuing an agent). That may have been because of a bug, or he may have simply not found out how to do it. It is easy to guess that he may have come to a different conclusion had he seen the full content of this build.

Three other news sites that have covered the release are VG24/7, Eurogamer.net, and PCGamer. You can read their pieces here, here and here. (As always, these are also added to our press coverage page).

The discussions whether it made sense to go to Steam already with the game in its current state has also been ongoing on the Steam forum. In one of the threads, a 5LS developer (I am guessing it is Brent) has given a detailed reasoning for their decision to release as Early Access at this point. The post is given in full below, as it may clear up some questions that people have at this point:

WetWired [developer] 16 Dec @ 10:37am

Early Access provides us with 3 major benefits as developers.

1) It brings in extra funds, which contray to your concerns aren’t being spent on money hats and yachts. It all goes straight back into the game to make it better, this means keeping some of our contractors around a bit longer to work on the game, none of it goes in our own pockets.

2) It allows us to extend our tester base with literally thousands of combinations different computer specs and setups, something we just can’t do on our own. The amount of bugs reports we’ve recieved over the past few days has been amazing and we’re squashing some of them already.

As an aside I’d also like to thank the people who have submitted bugs, I’m surprised at the level of detail and explaination in some of them in how to reproduce the bugs, I’ve seen less professional bug reports from people who’ve been game testers for years.

3) User feedback has been incredible and much needed, some of the feedback is based around things we’ve yet to implement but there’s been some great new ideas put forward by the community in just the few days it’s been out publically.

As a developer we can often get used to certain features or the way the game operates just because we’ve been living with it every day for the past year and a half. So it’s good to get fresh takes from people. Watching some of the youtube video play throughs has been eye opening, We here in the office will play the way we intended it to play, whereas the end user doesn’t have the bias of how it’s meant to play, they just play it the way it’s been laid out in front of them, doing things we never intended or thought could happen (this includes some of emergent gameplay and inventive strategies we hoped would come from the way we’ve designed the game). So when we see someone new playing it, it allows us to see the gaps we need to fill and flesh it out to produce the experience we have in mind.

Rest assured we have enough money to finish the game and won’t be abandoning ship halfway through development, we formed this studio to make THIS game and unlike other studios you mentioned our attention and budget isn’t fragmented between multiple projects. It’s in our best interest to make this, our debut title as a new studio as best as it can be and earn the trust of our players.

Other discussions which are ongoing at the moment are for example an achievement ideas thread, or a combat feel PROs/CONs thread, to name just a few.