Jeff recently took some time to respond to user posts on the DG2 Steam Community. His responses covered many topics and I think they should live here on the HPE Blog as well. Thank you all for your continued support and inquiries!
Protect the Cores!
Topic: Mac & Linux issues haven’t been patched as often as I’d like. I’m worried that they’ll ask for players to buy a DLC or something to have additional issues fixed.
Response: We are currently working on bug fix updates for PC, Mac and Linux. There are no planned purchases or anything to buy to get the updates. We use metrics and bug reports to track issues people are having, and our goal is to hit all the top issues on each platform that make up the majority of what gets reported back to us. This work is on-going and is making progress. Early update candidates have been tested and sent back to development with more to be done before it’s ready for release. There is no target date for these updates until they’re done. I’m guessing that they will be released in the next few weeks, but that is just a guess on my part. It will depend on how fast we can fix the issues that remain.
Topic: On my screen, some levels are very dark to the point they aren’t easily playable.
Response: Unfortunately, with respect to platforms, the platform that has consistently had some of the most difficult to solve issues is the Mac platform. From some of the things said, it looks like the person posting may be playing on the Mac (or they are seeing some issues we’re not aware of on other platforms). We’re still working to solve those problems, but some of them are much more challenging to solve on the Mac than on other platforms. For example, the “very dark maps” bug is only known to take place on Macs and only on certain Macs that have AMD video cards and only a select subset of those AMD video cards that have a particular bug in their AMD driver.
On this issue, we contacted AMD around launch in September when this issue was first noticed and we traced it to their cards, and they worked with us, identified the issue and fixed the issue in their driver. We tried several times to work around the driver, but it turned out that this wasn’t possible on those cards. I’d love to get you that driver that AMD made right now, but on Macs, we can’t post a new driver for you. Updated drivers have to be distributed by Apple inside OSX updates – and those updates get locked months in advance. AMD’s fix is in the queue to be released as part of OSX 10.10.3, but it did not make it in to the 10.10.2 release in time.
Topic: Sometimes guns / cannons won’t shoot at enemies in range and in sight, because of trying to shoot another alien that is way out of range. Also, guns & lasers sometimes still target aliens that already fell dead 4 or 5 squares away.
Response: As for the targeting issues, tower targeting can be very complex with the different items available to you to use (target strongest, target fastest), and the base algorithms used to give you the best chance to succeed. Our test team hasn’t seen towers shoot at the ground where aliens died previously like the post mentions, so if you are seeing that, getting more info from you on the specific targeting issues you are seeing would be useful – especially if you can state steps to reproduce it. Of course, missile towers and meteor towers may appear to fire at empty ground if the targeted mob dies while the projectile is en route to the target, but I don’t think that’s what was being discussed above.
Topic: If game is fast-forwarded, rhino aliens reach the cores much faster than expected. The scores in fast forward aren’t exactly the same as when not in fast forward.
Response: With respect to fast forwarding, fast forward will always be less precise than running the game at regular speed. Compared to DG1, fast forwarding in DG2 is an order of magnitude more accurate than it was in the first version. The more you fast forward, the more it will be “slightly off” (and we believe slightly worse – FF shouldn’t ever make your score better) than playing the game at regular speed with the most detailed simulation. Slowing the game further does not improve the simulation.
Topic: It seems like there haven’t been any patches since release.
Response: Updates: So far since release we had September & October PC updates that fixed a majority of bugs reported after launch. On Mac we released 3 updates in October and December. On Linux, I believe we’ve had 1 update so far. The plan as I mentioned is to have a new update for all three platforms here as soon as they are ready.
Topic: Limit tower mode seems to serve no purpose on limiting towers, other than bugging boosts.
Response: Clarifying on Limit tower mode. Boost towers are not counted on limit tower mode and will only be allowed to be built if you have a tower remaining to be built in the limit so you can build on it. There was a bug introduced in one of the updates that we hope to fix in the next update that adding a timing problem where a boost could be sold if a tower was being built on it.
Topic: On the mapmaking tool, HPE wants it so they can charge for fan-made maps and that seems wrong.
Response: With respect to the level editor. Anyone on the PC can run the level editor, make levels, play them, and share them however they want. We’ve even highlighted some of the free maps available and out there. In addition DG2 has an in-game store where you can purchase chosen user levels with royalties going to the map creators. We were able to put 4 maps in the in-game store for launch, but only recently has Valve activated the needed version of Workshop for 3rd parties. We expect to add more maps from Workshop to the in-game store soon, once Valve turns this Workshop on for Defense Grid 2. We hope that will be soon. The next Mac update should also fix the bug that prevents Mac users from playing the UCC levels.