14th Jan Dev Update
OK - we're still busy at work. I was going to try and release a new build today which fixed all the major crashes in the last one but some of the upgrades to the ground combat have introduced a new bug that is causing issues with the aliens spawning. So that's not going to happen until that is fixed.
We are planning to release a new build on Friday too, or perhaps over this weekend. It's the continuation of our last build, hopefully having all of the aliens in it by then and having a few extra maps. It will also have quite a lot more of the research tree in it (with research descriptions, but probably not much game balance), and hopefully an AI update.
If we don't have a major update for the AI this week, I'll ask GJ to write a post explaining what's going on on that front and explain why it's taking so long (I imagine the post would involve the word "engine" followed by a lot of rude words).
Over the past few days I've been working on the Research tree, writing research descriptions. This takes a LONG time; each one is 3-5 paragraphs of semi-plausible technobabble and it takes me up to two hours to get it right. There's a lot of them too, sadly. I think I've done about a third of them so far. I'll be working on this for the next few days too and hopefully can make good progress on it. It's one of the last missing things in the game.
Today I was working on the new UI Stores screen - this screen is now about 75% finished, and looks very much like the concept. It's rather cool seeing the first of the new UI screens nearing completion, as I think they'll add a lot to the game. This is in a separate branch of the code, though, so you won't see any new screens for a while yet. But work is moving ahead on that. Same with the new launcher too, which should be done in the next couple of weeks.
Aaron's been busy working on the Middle East tileset, and we're doing a few more ground tiles for that. It turned out that it wasn't that interesting with the existing tiles but we've got a few new props for it too now, so it should have a proper map in the update this weekend. We're now turning our attention to the Alien Base tileset, and once we have a stable enough build to test the UFO layouts in, we'll finalise them and start work on the final art for those too.
So, should be an interesting week. Sorry for the ongoing stability issues, hopefully there'll be a big payoff this Friday / weekend.
Chris England - Xenonauts Project Lead