Devblog 159
You've got Mailboxes! Spears are buffed, crossbows tweaked, and the Rocket monument is taking shape.

11 May 2017

Video Update
Semi-Auto Bug Fix

I found a long standing bug with the semi-auto weapons that really hurt the vast majority of players but benefited scripters. There was an issue where the semi-autos would only fire under very specific circumstances: the button would have to be unpressed one frame and depressed the next and it had to be ready to fire. If you clicked too fast, it would rarely register that you had unpressed it, which meant it would not fire until these conditions were met. Long story short, clicking really fast used to make the weapon fire twice as slow, so you’d have to time the semi-auto action perfectly for it to fire at its optimal rate or use a script. Most of the semi-auto weapons had a refire rate of 0.1s which meant you could empty the magazine in 1-2 seconds! I’ve increased the refire rate of most semi-auto weapons to 0.175, which seems like they should fire slower but in reality due to the bug fix most players will find them more responsive, and you won’t hear that automatic fire from scripters/mouse-wheel abusers any longer.

Crossbow Buff

No one used the Crossbow. Why would you? I’ve lowered its reload time by 0.8s, so you can put more shots down range in a shorter amount of time. I also found a bug where the sight attachment point was parented to the arrow, which meant it looked weird with reloads. Fixed.

P.s. I’m looking at adding new arrow types, so you’ll notice the HV arrow has a metal tip now. Just to test it out.

Spear Buff

I hate how people would choose to throw Spears, even at point blank range, so I’ve made some modifications to make using it as a stabbing weapon more viable. I’m probably going to nerf its throw damage down to equal its melee damage in the future, but one step at a time. I’ve increased the range by about another half meter, and I’ve lowered the time it takes between mouse click and the attack action significantly. It feels way more responsive and you should be able to keep those rock wielding nakeds at bay without having to throw your Spear.

Mailbox

“Lolz dum fks y u add this roleplay garbage bring back bps.” - Future Comments.

I’ve added the Mailbox object to the game. It’s pretty simple, but I think it has some gameplay implications beyond fun roleplay stuff. Basically it has a single slot to put a note in, when you close the inventory it gets moved to storage so only a person with building privilege can access it. It holds 12 letters.

The reason for adding this is so that you can communicate with your neighbours easily while they are offline or not at home. If you want to make peace with someone, you can leave a note saying you live just on the hill and to stop by sometime; or if a shop owner doesn’t have something in stock, you can leave a note saying you’ll be back and hopefully they’ll start selling it. It’s a small feature, but I think it’ll add to the game in a non-trivial way.

Auto Turret Performance

Yikes. Auto Turrets would only gather their targets once a second for performance reasons. Problem is, they all decided to grab their targets at the same time in the same frame, leading to server hiccups every few seconds, especially as they are in use more often now. I’ve since fixed this so they stagger how often they think between all the turrets, which smooths the lag out over many frames.

Water Jug

Remember that old blue water jug? Well it’s back, with a viewmodel and all! I know most people aren’t currently taking advantage of water/farming, and I will address that in the future, but for the people who do need water, wasn’t it scary using a Bucket to transport water from a stream back to your base? Because it has no lid, if you deselected it all the water would drop out, and you were very vulnerable during this time. Well the new Water Jug has a lid on it. You can fill it up, pop it into your inventory, and stay armed during your trek. They are uncraftable, but you can find these in Food Boxes and Crates around the map. They also recycle into 50 Metal Fragments.

Fishtrap Cost Changes

No one used Fishtraps because of the Rope requirement. Now they cost Cloth again, so have fun.

Sign Cost Reduction

Wow some of the signs costed like 1000 Metal Frags! I fixed this so the two decorative signs cost about 100-150 Metal Frags each, and the small/medium wooden signs have had their prices halved

Helmet Fixes

Wow. The Riot Helmet has been using the wrong protection values, probably since its inception. It is supposed to block 80% of all melee damage, but by accident it was set to use identical protection as the Bucket Helmet! This is now fixed and this thing should be a beast. I’ll consider lowering its cost and maybe I’ll make it spawn in purple boxes instead of a green t-shirt.

Also, the Heavy Plate Helmet protects 10% more against Bullet and Arrow damage.

Tool Cupboard Changes

I’ve changed a few things about Tool Cupboards to discourage base griefing. You can now place locks on them so attackers have to destroy them before they can grief your base. To actually make this useful I increased the protection values to the same ones the wooden door uses. Finally, to avoid abuse you can now only place the cupboard on player-built constructions. The idea behind all of this is that people have to invest either time or resources in order to grief a base they just raided, which hopefully makes it less common.

In addition to this you can now pick up Ladders, Window Shutters, Embrasures and Window Bars with the Hammer tool when inside building privilege to prevent griefing with Ladders and allow upgrading of window inserts.

Ceiling Light Placement Mods

I’ve modified the max slope that ceiling lights can be placed on. This means you can light up your base easier by placing ceiling lights on roofs.

Rusty Rocket

This week’s developments on the launch site were focused on the rocket itself for me. It’s not complete in these screenshots as I have yet to add branding and decals to it. I will also have to break into its stages for the parts that are kept in the factory.

Environment Lighting

I’ve fixed a long standing lighting issue where the game would incorrectly switch to the interior lighting mode with occluded ambient light when close to certain trees or rock overhangs or when walking around some of the open sewer areas in monuments. While I was at it I also optimized the environment volume tests that are used to darken caves and sewer tunnels, and disabled fog in those environments in order to achieve some real darkness in there and make lights more useful.

Monument Fixes

There have been a number of issues around monuments where bucket lifts would fail to move, door animations would not play, research tables could not be interacted with and cave segments were culled even though they should be visible. Those issues were all introduced with the AI merge and should be fixed now.

Water Jug Sounds

I also did some quick sounds for the new Water Jug viewmodel. I’ve got a jerry can I’ll record proper sounds for this with next week, but at least it’s not silent.

Music

Bit of a slow week for me because my OS drive on my computer had a fit, so I spent Monday trying to fix it without having to do a full reformat, and Tuesday doing that full reformat and reinstalling everything. Thankfully I keep backups so I didn’t lose anything at all.

I did manage to get all of our existing songs ported over to the new playback system though, and I’ve spent quite a bit of time tuning fade/transition settings to get them playing back nicely.

I’ve also added a handful of smaller features to the playback system and the editor to smooth out bumps I hit while setting those songs up (alt click+drag to duplicate clips in the timeline, dragging multiple clips to the timeline from the project browser at once, etc).

Gesture Animations

I wanted to clean up some of the animations I did a while back, and also decided to set up a test world with current gesture ideas on buttons to see how they'd trigger:

I also looked at a few different ways we may implement them. We could have them bindable to keys for instance, or make them context sensitive so being in a certain situation or position would bring up a certain set. We could even have a UI for them, similar to the building menu:

In time perhaps we'd even have categories of gestures, like greetings, raid specific, emotions... There's a lot of cool ways these could be used in-game. By all means get your suggestions in for other cool gestures or interesting ways to present this to the player.

Physical-based Shading Revamp

After a long period of bug fixes and performance improvements, a couple of weeks ago I finally started working on a long overdue rendering/shading overhaul. Our current physical-based shading implementation can sometimes feel unrealistic and/or inconsistent; it has a few fundamental problems that needed to be addressed in order to bring Rust visually up to par with modern games.

I've been working on a new shading pipeline based on a widely tested and proven industry standard. The new pipeline will be delivered smoothly over a transition period where both old and new pipelines will work side by side, to give artists enough time to transition. The new pipeline relies on simpler, more compact data, while enforcing physical-based material rules more effectively. We're aiming for a more realistic look and I'm looking to save us memory in the process.

These screenshots below show the comparison between the old Skin shader and the new one, featuring deferred screen-space subsurface scattering:

These changes are not in yet but I will start rolling them out next week, starting with the new skin shader, after I finish all testing. Next up will be Hair and revamped Foliage/Vegetation.

Rocket Factory

The work on the Rocket Factory continues, and I've made significant progress over the last two weeks. I spent the last few days going through my list of tasks, polishing both the exterior and interior parts of the building. I finished the walkways and staircases that encompass the whole area. My focus for the next few days is to polish all the existing art, do a dressing pass and add additional paths throughout the area.

NPC Footsteps

I recently dropped the distance that dangerous NPC footsteps were audible from, but I overcorrected and made bears and wolves a little more ninja than I intended, so I brought it back up a bit this week.

Dropbox V2

You may remember in Devblog 150 when I showed off a dropbox model. It's where a player would be able to put in items inside for the owner. Well, here’s version 2!

It didn’t make much sense that, even though it’s a game, you could deposit 1k Wood in such a tiny space. So we’ve made it much more beefy for all your beef, chicken, and wood deposits! I’ve just got to do the LODs, gibs and Unity prefab set up and I’m all done!

Roadsign Rework

I finished up skinning the armour this week. The LODs are almost finished, but for now here's a few shots of it in-game!

159 May 11 2017
  • new

    Added “skipqueue” admin console command

  • new

    Added last violation type to anti hack kick messages and server log

  • new

    Added Water Jug - large capacity container with lid found in food crates/boxes

  • removed

    Removed admin demolish option from hammer (bind “ent kill” to hotkey instead)

  • removed

    Removed “antihack.enabled” convar (toggle protections individually instead)

  • fixed

    Fixed lighting issues inside some monument sewers

  • fixed

    Fixed lighting issues near some trees and rocks

  • fixed

    Fixed bucket lift issues in caves

  • fixed

    Fixed door animation issues in monuments

  • fixed

    Fixed research tables in some monuments

  • fixed

    Fixed some cave culling issues

  • fixed

    Fixed occasional rubber banding when jumping up things

  • fixed

    Fixed blurred tunnel mud texture

  • fixed

    Fixed Crossbow Viewmodel scope being parented to the arrow

  • fixed

    Fixed riot helmet using bucket helmet protection

  • updated

    Dangerous NPC footsteps audible from a bit farther away

  • updated

    Optimized environment volume lighting updates

  • updated

    Disabled fog inside underground systems (proper darkness)

  • updated

    Can pick up ladders inside building privilege with hammer

  • updated

    Can pick up window bars inside building privilege with hammer

  • updated

    Can pick up shutters inside building privilege with hammer

  • updated

    Can pick up embrasures inside building privilege with hammer

  • updated

    Upgrade, rotate and demolish building privilege checks work similar to placement

  • updated

    Adjusted locker deploy / prevent building volumes (exploit fix)

  • updated

    Can put code lock on tool cupboard

  • updated

    Tool cupboard has same protection properties as wooden door

  • updated

    Can only place tool cupboard on player constructions

  • updated

    Semi Auto weapons properly detect all mouse presses

  • updated

    Semi Auto Weapons refire rate adjusted to compensate

  • updated

    Spear attack rate very slightly increased

  • updated

    Spear duration between click and attack significantly reduced

  • updated

    Spear melee attack range increased

  • updated

    Crossbow reload time reduced by 0.8s

  • updated

    HV arrows show up as having a metal tip (temp)

  • updated

    Lowered cost of metal hanging signs by 90%

  • updated

    Wooden sign costs reduced

  • updated

    Flamethrower can now damage AI

  • updated

    Mailbox implemented

  • updated

    Rifle Body takes 250 Scrap to craft

  • updated

    Map crafts in 5 seconds

  • updated

    Note crafts in 5 seconds

  • updated

    Drinking from the world is slightly less glitchy

  • updated

    Auto Turrets have less of a server performance impact

  • updated

    Ceiling lights can be deployed on angled surfaces

  • updated

    Food crates spawn 3x as much food

  • updated

    Ration boxes no longer spawn scrap

  • updated

    Heavy Plate Helmet now has slightly higher protection than facemask

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