Things are rolling along swimmingly – we collected the Best PC Hardcore Game Award in Game Connection Europe 2018, and the Steam release date is getting closer, with the Barotrauma Steam page now finally up. Check it out and be sure to wishlist us!
We also now have a new website dedicated to Barotrauma, where you will find all the latest news about the game. We will be posting to the blog on the new website regularly about many of the interesting new features that the Steam version of the game will have.
With the new website, this blog will be updated a little less regularly, but do check in later to see what else we may have in the works! While this site is going through a quiet spell, you can always find out the latest about both Barotrauma and SCP-CB on our Discord, forums and Twitter.
Way past due to make a blog post and give a status update on what’s going on with Barotrauma!
Despite the lack of major updates (on the blog and on the game), a lot of stuff has been happening this year. Those of you who have keeping an eye on the GitHub repo may have noticed the dev branch we’ve been working on this past year. There’s quite a lot of new features and changes in the dev version, and in the coming weeks I’ll be making more blog posts about them and the things to come. But as a teaser, here’s some of the upcoming features (some already implemented):
Overhauled health system that’s closer to SS13’s one. Supports things like limb-specific injuries (like a broken leg that reduces movement speed), overdoses, poisons, antidotes, infections, addictions, mental health problems… And everything is highly customizable, so I’m eager to see what modders can do with this.
The campaign is being overhauled to give the player a better sense of progression. The levels and missions increase in difficulty as the player progresses, the world changes as new outposts are established and existing ones devastated by the sea monsters, and there’s an actual end goal instead of having the player wander around the map indefinitely. We’re also planning on making the outposts something you can actually dock your sub to and enter, not just menus with a list of characters to hire and items to buy. This is such a large feature to implement though, that at least initially the outposts will stay similar to the way they are (although with redesigned menus).
Improved levels. There are several distinct biomes with different sorts of environmental hazards: moving ice structures, water currents, sonar-disrupting sessile organisms, giant plants that can latch onto the sub, lava vents…
Improved and more easily customizable event system. The system can be used to adjust the difficulty and pacing of the rounds more accurately, for example by distributing monsters more evenly throughout the level, by creating random events when there’s nothing going on or by delaying additional monster spawns when the crew has just been hit by a disaster.
Visual improvements: many of the current sprites and animations will be reworked, menus redesigned, the lighting system improved and new kinds of structures added to give sub creators more to work with.
Better audio design and new music composed specifically for the game (along with a system that dynamically mixes the music according to the situation).
Steam integration: achievements, matchmaking through Steam, authenticating users based on their Steam ID (= ban evasion by changing your IP will not work anymore), downloading mods and submarines from Steam Workshop…
Improved crew AI and more ways to command the AI characters – playing with an AI crew doesn’t feel like babysitting suicidal crash test dummies anymore.
In-game character and animation editor. So less tedious xml editing to create new monsters or mod the existing ones.
I know this is a risky move and something not many games have done, but I’m confident that it will open up whole new possibilities for the future of Barotrauma. In my opinion one of the things that made SCP – Containment Breach as successful as it is, was the openness of the development and how easy it was for the community to contribute, and I believe that going in a similar direction could be beneficial to Barotrauma as well. As with SCP-CB, people are of course welcome to contribute to the main game in addition to making mods. And I’d like to stress that I’m not expecting for the community to start doing our work for us for free. If someone ends up making substantial contributions to the development, I’m completely open to discussing some type of compensation.
So, if you’re a modder looking for more freedom than the configuration files offer or just want to take a look under the hood and see what makes Barotrauma tick, head to the following link:
As many of you may know, me and juanjp600 have been working on rewriting Barotrauma’s networking code for some time now (oh god, I just checked and it’s been 9 months, why does time have to go so fast). The old networking logic was so full of issues (trivial to hack, constant desync issues, excessive packet rate) that we had to basically redesign everything from scratch, but based on the testing sessions I’ve been hosting recently, it really seems to have paid off. Now we’ve finally got proper authoritative servers and syncing logic that actually works(!).
The rewritten netcode is by far the most important change in the latest update, but it also includes some other new stuff, including reworked UI graphics, a sonar overhaul and bunch of bugfixes. See the full changelog here.
A few words about the sonar overhaul: now there’s the option to select between passive and active modes. The passive sonar doesn’t send out pings, but instead listens to sources of sound around the sub and the sounds reflected from nearby structures. This makes it possible to get a rough idea of the surroundings without alerting monsters (or enemy subs) with the ping. The sonar displays were also given a little facelift:
Last week, Valve brought us some big news regarding Steam Greenlight: they’re planning on getting rid of Greenlight “in the next few months” to make way for a new system called Steam Direct. Personally I think Direct seems like a reasonable move to fight the waves of shovelware that have been pouring through Greenlight for the past few years, but it will also most likely have a major impact on small indie devs like me. Developers will be required to pay a fixed fee for each game they submit through Steam Direct, and while the fee apparently hasn’t been set in stone yet, there have been discussions of a price from $100 to as high as $5000. If they end up going with a fee at the higher end of the spectrum, it will be a major setback to Barotrauma and my meager student budget. So, I thought it might be a good idea to try and get the game greenlit while it’s still possible!
A beginner’s guide to injecting mind-controlling parasites into people
Make sure you’ve been infected with the husk parasite. The most common way to get infected is an encounter with an active husk, but some well-equipped laboratories and research facilities may also house dormant husk eggs.
The parasite will slowly start taking over your entire nervous system, but this process can be delayed by working together with the parasite by spreading eggs into new hosts. Just find a suitable target and gently insert the ovipositor into one of their body cavities.