Alpha 24.4 Now on Steam Unstable

Weathering the storm

The main feature of this unstable release is the new Weather system. When you update your game, you’ll notice three new icons under the sun: a weather forecast showing the weather for today, tomorrow, and the day after.

Most weather focuses on creating a mood by subtly altering the visuals and audio around your town: the atmosphere, sky, sunrises and sunsets, and ambient sounds.

More severe weather types have gameplay effects, like influencing plant growth, making unsheltered citizens and animals hot or cold, destroying trees by lightning, or crops by sandstorms.

There are 9 weather types currently enabled – see if you can spot them all!

For more details, head over to this week’s Desktop Tuesday.

Clearing up the atmosphere

Last year, we did some experiments with in-game atmospherics, in service of some lighting experiments. In this release, we port a number of those atmospheric changes over, plus update waterfalls to their original, flat appearance from early concept art.

  • Added support for fog, atmospheric scattering, and image gradients in sky settings.
  • Switched waterfall rendering to the flat style.
  • Fixed water rendering seams (in high quality graphics mode).

Progress marches on

We are wrapping up our work on the new Town Progression campaigns, and while there are still a few things missing here and there, what you see in this release is pretty close to our vision for the feature. Changes in this version include:

  • Added the Rayya’s Children version of the town progression campaign.
  • Added visiting NPCs during town upgrade celebrations.
  • Added legendary weapons and armor to Valor shrine rewards (stats still need balancing).
  • Added a variety of random buffs to the town progression Deity shrines.
  • Added a tab to the Town Overview UI showing active town bonuses.
  • Added celebration music.
  • Added sound effects to some emotes and celebrations.
  • Added animation to encounter dialog text.
  • Rebalanced Glory hearth enemy wave difficulty and rewards, and raised Glory level cap to 512.
  • Increased required Net Worth for 9-21 citizens, to make Hearth upgrades matter.
  • Reduced required Food for immigration by 25%.
  • Improved iconography of town progression UIs.
  • Fixed fractional gold interest in the Hearth of the Makers bonus.
  • Fixed several dialog errors in the Ascendancy town progression campaign.
  • Fixed music unlocks as a result of town tier upgrades. This means that you can finally enjoy Raj’s Tier 3 music for both the Ascendancy and Rayya’s Children ingame!

Traders and exotic pets

Tired of getting same old traders? Tired of having thousands of gold pieces lying around and nothing to spend them on? To complement the new tier progression quest, this alpha introduces three tiers of traders with thematically cohesive inventories. A very special late-game trader introduces a number of exotic (and expensive) pets, including ones originally designed during the Kickstarter campaign. As promised, Kickstarter backers will additionally receive the ability to embark with these pets via a mod to be released at a later date.

  • Rebalanced all traders to have 3 tiers of shops that provide more variety while also being less predictable.
  • Added herb and pottery traders.
  • Added the ability to buy pets and added 3 tiers of pet traders. Late game pets include the critters originally designed during the Kickstarter campaign. As promised, Kickstarter backers will receive the ability to embark with these pets via a mod to be released later.

Other changes

  • Added an ambient audio volume slider.
  • Added a time of day slider debug tool.
  • Improved iconography of the main action bar.
  • Fixed several AI bugs which should reduce indecisiveness when considering unreachable destinations.
  • Fixed a number of grammatical mistakes in item descriptions.
  • Fixed volume sliders not showing the correct value when moving the slider too quickly.
  • Fixed rabbits fleeing from shepherds.
  • Fixed right clicking in trade menus.
  • Fixed performance hitches when playing certain audio effects (e.g. rooster call).
  • Fixed steel ingot missing from input box filters.
  • Fixed the settings menu not being closeable on fresh installs.
  • Fixed missing place item/ladder hotkeys.

Savegame compatibility

This release has several changes that are not backward-compatible with saves made on previous Unstable versions, but saves from different Stable alpha versions should work.

Have fun!
Team Stonehearth