Unfortunately I have not written much here since the release.
First, I would like to apologise to those of you who have had technical problems. I have started a thread in the Steam forums where I have listed the most common errors and have now collected a lot of information about this. All of this will of course be made available here in our support forum as soon as our server is able to remain stable under the load.
Secondly, I would like to say how amazed we all are here by the huge success of the game. Number one on Steam for several days in a row at this time of year when the big hitters come out... wow, we never expected that. It's crazy to see that more than 10,000 people are playing our game at any one time on Steam (even more if you include those who are in offline mode). Madness!
Great though it is to see that the game is so successful and that many people are having a lot of fun with it, it pains me to see every case where the game causes problems. Sorry folks, I can only apologise for that.
Now, on to the reason for this post: I want to set out our priorities for the next few weeks. These are, as it were, the results of the feedback so far.
1) Language bugs - the German Betty, french text and other problems will be fixed.
2) True crash bugs fixed. There are undeniably some program-related crashes, and we are are trying to sort these out by sending those who experience particularly large numbers of crashes special versions of the EXEs. From the feedback it seems that some people are affected much more frequently than others by crashes. At the beginning of the week we will build a group of new computers and will try to reproduce your problem PC (same motherboard, same GPU, etc.). Those of you who believe you are particularly badly afffected (and no, it is NOT safe to use 32-bit Windows) should contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
for the special EXE.
3) AI bugs with trade ships (please make sure you are using the trade menu correctly before assuming you are affected by this bug).
4) Performance improvements: It seems ironic that most customers who are particularly dissatisfied with performance are those with the fastest computers. This may partly be because we made no special attempt to optimise for fast PCs. It even seems as though the most extreme high-end PCs barely have higher framerates than mid-range ones. We will be tackling this issue aggresively and will be stocking up on high end hardware for tests, to try out things like SLI and hex-core systems. Of course optimisations will also benefit other systems. Tips for configuration are in my post on the Steam forum and in the Egosoft Support forum.
5) Improvements for the near future: We will now begin to organise our plans and your wishes by priority. There are a few major development areas that are sure to take us into the beginning of 2014 for an update, and many small things that we would like to address as soon as possible. Here are just a few examples:
- Smalltalk on platforms: Once you unlock a reward you can ask for all the rewards we currently have already. If you ask for a good NPC you can further filter by job type. So you effectively find e.g the best pilot in your vicinity.
- NPC classes are to be clearly marked to make it clear who does what.
- Improved joystick support - there seem to be problems at the moment with joysticks. Some may not yet be configured in a satisfactory way (we're working on it). There is also a suspicion that certain joysticks crash the game at startup when they are plugged in.
- Improved menus - feedback regard some menus which should be improved accordingly. What I hear most often at the moment are problems with managing the Trade Order list. This should be shown in every ship that is in your squad and can then be removed from the Info menu. There are also other improvements in various menus that will need to happen gradually over several updates.
- Shortcuts - currently veterans miss many hotkeys such as "T" for next target, Shift-"D" to dock, Shift-"R" for the property list, etc.
OK... this should give you all just a brief insight into our current work. For those of you able to play without problems, I wish you continued fun. For those who have technical problems, and as can of course be seen on here on the forum there are many of you, I want to apologise again and ask for your patience.
Thank you all for the huge success!