Space Pirates and Zombies 2

Space Pirates and Zombies 2

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Blorf  [developer] Mar 1 @ 11:41am
V 0.9.0 The Merging is Complete (Engine Upgrade)
Hi All,

We have finished upgrading from Unity 5.0.4 to Unity 5.4.4. The last time we upgraded the engine was before we entered early access. This is a huge change and is the first major SPAZ 2 engine update that you will have been exposed to.

The main reason to upgrade the engine was to stay compliant with the ever changing operating systems and technology. The last engine version was already two years old, and we feel it is critical to stay up to date to ensure SPAZ 2 continues to work for years to come.

We tested the build as best as two people can, but there may be issues here and there. Please keep your eyes out for bugs and weird issues, and if you see them, please report them on the bug forums here:

So this update isn't about new stuff, in fact ideally the game looks and plays identically to v 0.8.8. The goal was to get everything working as it was in v0.8.8 and then build on that foundation for the rest of the project. Since gameplay didn't change between v 0.8.8 and v0.9.0 we can roll back to v0.8.8 without breaking saves. We want to ensure that we don't disrupt peoples' progress.

First a note about dual monitor setups:

So between Unity 5.0.4 and Unity 5.4.4 somewhere monitor 0 and 1 became swapped in the engine. What this means is that your monitors may be swapped next time you play. We tried to make this as painless to fix as possible and have added an in game display switcher to the Display Menu.

Beyond that, we also detect if you have dual monitors and place a one time helper button on the main menu to fix the problem. The big yellow button will go away as soon as you start a game, and it will never return. We wanted to make sure people wouldn't be frustrated by the unintended swap.

Loading/Spawning Performance Improvements:

As discussed in the v0.8.8 announcement, multiplayer wasn't going to work. See:

Although experimenting and trying multiple methods to bring multiplayer online ate most of the time between v0.8.7 and v0.9.0, we were able to make some improvements. Also, again, thank you all for your amazing understanding and kindness about this.

After v0.8.8 we began to remove the Unity 4 legacy networking hooks from the game (took 3 days, there were tons). This means that all of our spawning routines and level loading now flow directly from function calls instead of traveling through a virtual network layer and object lookup system before reaching their eventual destinations.

What this means to you... Speed. You should notice that there is much less hitching when ships spawn and level spawning should be really fast. Everything is essentially on a direct pipe now.

DirectX11 Support:

SPAZ 2 is now DX11 capable. If your card only runs DX9, don't worry, the game will default to DX9 if DX11 is not present.

People with DirectX11 capable video cards can expect frame rate improvements. Visuals wise, the game should hopefully look identical, just faster.

There were rendering improvements for everyone across the board, especially on the map due to some shader changes.

Please report any rendering issues you see. We tried to catch em all, but there is a lot of stuff out there.

Camera input standardized:

We found a really odd bug that has been around forever and fixed it. It turns out when vysnc was off and frame rate was really high in some cases, like the ship assembly level because there is almost nothing in there, the mouse input would slow way down. What was happening was the mouse input was being divided by the frame speed. This meant higher frame rates, slower mouse.

What this also meant was lower frame rates, faster mouse. The mouse input changing based on frame rate is just bad so we fixed it.

Since we played with vsync on we never noticed the issue until now.

Now at low and high frame rates the mouse input should be consistent.

What this means to you: You may need to readjust your mouse sensitivity, but once you adjust it, it will be consistent.

The Starmap Background:

This was an artistic change that would not effect save games, so we let this one in. The Starmap now has a cool 3D background. It adds a lot of depth to the Starmap... Badum tish... I will see myself out.

Going Forward:

The next version will focus on the sandbox and improving tuning and replaybility.

We hope to release a large set of game mutators for the sandbox.
We want to make missile builds more viable.
A new map for the Starmap!
A first crack at a really hard insane difficulty mode for experts.

Beyond that there will be a focus on physics and script performance improvements. Rendering wise we probably have done all that can be done, but we think we can squeak out some more frame rate by taking a bit more load off the CPU. Never hurts to try anyhow.

Thanks everyone!

Andrew (Blorf) and Richard (Narlak)
Last edited by Blorf; Mar 1 @ 12:31pm
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Showing 1-15 of 22 comments
Wow, finally came back, it was a long time didn't hear anything, nice, and the performance upgrade, nice!, having a potato with wires so it will definitely help (tho this game never lagged anyway and not having it on low but default+). So it means new updates are going to swarm us again with enjoyment right?
Last edited by Nightmare Moon; Mar 1 @ 12:35pm
Blorf  [developer] Mar 1 @ 12:36pm 
Yup work on the gameplay systems has recommenced!
Stry8993 Mar 1 @ 12:40pm 
Holy macaroni!
Yay!, also.. (yes, being blind it seems, didn't see post at 16 feb), from what did read there... it seems no multiplayer ever? tis very sad...
I'm looking forward to seeing what you guys do with missiles & bombs.
Taking more load off of the CPU would probably be for the best. A lot of games these days aren't particularily CPU-heavy and it's likely many gamers (myself included) have invested more in their video cards than their CPU's. And CPU's are far more of a pain to replace than video cards.
Last edited by ReaperLord; Mar 1 @ 2:21pm
GTX2GvO Mar 1 @ 2:39pm 
Thanks for the warning and options for dual monitor setups, cause I have a Dual monitor setup.

Besides that, I'm really hoping to for the sandbox to allow some crazy* mutators that can really funk up a gameplay.

* as in physics based computer meltable crazy, like core multipliers (not just double) and maximum Battle sizes (anywhere from 2 in the field till 8 or 10 in the field) and other things you think is insane on a high end system (let alone a normal one).
Great work guys!

I am realy looking forward to the replayablity and the mutators :)

Insaine on a new map will be alot of fun to!

Keep it up and thanks for giving us so much fun!!!!!
Nate Mar 1 @ 6:44pm 
This new version is nicely snappy. Noticed much better load times. No wait for the start of a battle. Doing other things in game seemed a touch quicker too. The graphics seem a little sharper but that could be my imagination.

A balance pass on all the weapons would be good. Some of the beam weapons are much better than others.

The AI enemies also need improvement. In general they don't do well in the ship battles. Poor ship designs and bad choice of components? Granted it takes me a lot of time to get good components in game. Maybe this is a problem for the AI too?
I hope one mutator will be that i can build bigger ships :D
keep up the good work
Skiv Mar 2 @ 6:50am 
Mutators, as in More Than 15 Cores?
Bozobub Mar 2 @ 8:40am 
Originally posted by Nate:
The AI enemies also need improvement. In general they don't do well in the ship battles. Poor ship designs and bad choice of components? Granted it takes me a lot of time to get good components in game. Maybe this is a problem for the AI too?
That's the core of problems with the AI, since way back ^^' . The AI simply can't design or fly ships very well.
Last edited by Bozobub; Mar 2 @ 8:40am
quick test

Originally posted by Nate:
The graphics seem a little sharper...
I aggree seems to be sharper
Performance seems to be upped by 20% +

but particle hose (looks cool) kills fps too heavy
5x particle hose 3x dronehanger + 3 enemys> 29 fps min.
same fight with 2x sniper 3x mass driver 3x dronehanger > 44 fps min.
>physic limit ?
@4790k 980ti 1440p
perhaps reduce firing feq. and up damage.
Last edited by crusher-666; Mar 2 @ 9:48am
I keep reading that topic title in a Protoss Archon voice in my head :)

New starmap backgroud is very pretty. Can't wait to see what else you guys have in store!
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