• Freejam Chris

Smoke n' Dust update - 18.03.2022

Hello everyone,

We’ve released a new update which includes a few server optimisations, QoL improvements and bug fixes. There's also some news at the bottom of these patch notes which detail some exciting new developments for the future.

Game Portal Changes

We’ve made a few changes to the Game Portal and the game modes within. The legacy offline game modes have been removed in favour of a new Superpowered race track. This will have a CPU limit of 2,500 and a power limit of 25,000.

There have also been some changes to the existing online tracks to better balance the kinds of machines we expect to see in them. CPU cost remains the same across all game modes.

Online Tracks

  • Portsdown Basin - Power limit lowered from 1,000HP to 525HP

  • Dirtfest Stadium - Power limit lowered from 2,800HP to 1,000HP

Server Optimisations

We’ve focused our efforts in this update to clean up the ‘jittering’ many of you were experiencing while racing around. Parts of machines would often flicker to another location visually before snapping back to the correct place. This should be greatly improved with this update.

Additionally, we have also been looking into reducing the bandwidth usage, sending and receiving less unnecessary data. There are a few other areas that we have discovered that we can optimise which should improve performance in general. We’ll be working on these changes for the next update.

Dust VFX

With recent updates, we’ve been improving the ‘feel’ of racing by adding in the FOV changes to emphasise the feeling of speed along with a number of tweaks to wheels. With this update, we’re adding in some dust and smoke VFX.

On concrete/road tiles you’ll see smoke, typically when wheel spinning or braking

On dirt, you’ll see dust

This system lays the groundwork for other particle systems in the future like weapon explosions and exhaust effects.

Balance Changes

  • Monster Truck Engine power cost reduced from 1,500 to 1,000

  • Jet weights increased by 25%

  • Jet Small max velocity reduced by 12.5%

  • Jet Medium max velocity reduced by 25%

  • Jet Large max velocity reduced by 25%

  • Jet Large power cost increased from 300 to 425

New Parts & Part Updates

A number of new parts have been added in this update:

Constant Block

This logic block will output a fixed signal based on the value set in the tweakable stat, in steps from 0.00 to 100.00

Counter Block

This logic block will output a signal of 1 once the target value has been reached, along with a progress and ‘Value’ output, which will output the current value on the counter. With Increment and Decrement inputs you can change the value.

Score Pickup Block

This block will award a fixed number of points to the player that passes through it. It can be set to respawn on a timer or be manually respawned through inputs.

Team Score Block

This block allows you to award a fixed score to a specific team. If a player or an object passes through a sensor, or a button is clicked, you can award 500 points to the Red team.

Object ID Block

This block will allow you to assign an ID to a block. Other blocks can use this to identify an object and activate a trigger.

The Area Sensor has also been updated to support this functionality. By default, it will not consider IDs of parts but that can be changed through tweakable stats. The Soccer Ball prop that we previously added also has this functionality built-in

City Streetlight

We’ve also made a few changes to the Checkpoint Blocks to remove some unnecessary complexity for the logic needed.

  • Added a ‘Complete’ output port

  • This port outputs a signal of 1 when the first player has passed through this checkpoint

  • Removed the ‘Score Multiplier’ input

  • Added a Winners Score stats which will award a % of the value based on the order in which players pass through this checkpoint, based on the number of spawn points

  • Player 1 gets 100%, Player 2 gets 50% etc

Testing Multiplayer Game Modes in World Editor

If you have multiple spawn points, you can switch between each character by pressing F6. This will allow you to test how the game would run in multiplayer mode. If you make something awesome that we feel would work well for an online multiplayer game mode, we will be rotating some community creations into the official servers so that you can all play together.

Bug Fixes & Changes

  • Updated EAC to address install issues with users that have special characters in their Windows profiles. Please let us know if you’re still experiencing issues with installation, or any other EAC related problems

  • Fixed an issue with wiring logic that could cause different behaviour in circuits when parts were added but did not affect the circuit loops

  • Wheel rigs that have been placed in incorrect rotations no longer spin in the wrong direction

  • Wheel rigs now have tweakable stats to flip the rotation direction and steering direction

  • Fixed an issue with wheels that were not attached to joints, and wheels that were not directly touching the ground causing issues with weight/grip calculations

  • Fixed an error that could occur when changing the quality setting in simulation

  • Fixed an error when entering a static seat during simulation in World Editor

  • Lowered the offset when trying to spawn a machine so that it is closer to the ground

  • The delete action in Crosshair mode now happens on mouse down

  • Fixed a bug with reflection probes that was causing flickering lighting on certain maps

  • Fixed an issue with materials not playing the correct audio when applied to blocks

  • Fixed incorrect materials being applied to the Grid, Transition and certain Road Turn tiles

  • Jets now have animated fans

  • Dirt Hill landscape tiles now have ledges/flatter transitions at the top and bottom

  • Moved a couple of materials into the World Editor only (Concrete and Chain Link fence)

  • Fixed the weight of Concrete

  • Fixed visual issues with pipe blocks

  • Fixed some visual issues with the hotbar when clicking modes and slots