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Devblog #51 - What's coming next

What’s up space survivors, have you managed to shield yourselves from the deadly space radiation that Exposure brought in? Or are you still struggling with keeping your base safe? Regardless, we believe that you will welcome the changes we have in store for the next update.

 


So what can you expect to see in the next update? Well, a lot of bug fixes, quality of life changes and balance improvements, major improvements to the warp drive, and warp travel in general and the introduction of a proper scanning system. This time we will cover some of the important quality of life changes and leave the warp drive and scanning system changes for later blogs. Most of these are a direct result of the community feedback sent our way and we can’t thank you enough for it! Keep sending ideas and critiques our way and we’ll keep making Hellion better, one update at a time.

 

Civilian Nanite Cores

 

These cores were designed to protect your base from various hazards over long periods of time therefore reducing the amount of maintenance and busy work that players would have to put in to keep their stations safe. Based on the feedback we’ve gathered so far, we have decided to improve their overall durability, making them last significantly longer across all zones. This is to reduce the amount of effort needed to maintain larger bases in high radiation zones, but also  allow players with less free time to still enjoy Hellion’s multiplayer aspect, shifting the focus from maintenance to other activities like exploration and mining.

 

Critical Degradation Effects

 

Now, onto an issue that had plagued every Hellion salvager since the Don’t Panic Update! The indicators for low module HP. This wasn’t a big problem before the Exposure Update, since degradation was uniform across the entire system and its value was extremely low. With the introduction of radiation damage and nanite cores, this issue became a major problem for anyone exploring junkyards and debris fields beyond Bethyr’s orbit. Since most derelict stations have no power, their ENV monitors remain offline, preventing players from accurately judging the module’s current HP leading to numerous deaths, as the module they are passing through suddenly turns into a flaming ball of debris.

 

 

Since repair points alone weren’t sufficient, and we wanted to maintain immersion, we’ve added several new visuals to damaged modules that clearly indicate that they are close to falling apart. Special explosion effects will now trigger when a module reaches a certain structural integrity, increasing in intensity, frequency and number as the structural integrity comes closer and closer to 0. And in case the visuals aren’t enough of an indicator, explosions will also cause minor harm to nearby players prompting them to either get away, or start looking for that nanite diffuser 

 

 

Advanced Starts

 

Another interesting feature that will be making its way to Hellion is the ability to unlock and choose several “advanced starts” when starting a new character. Instead of waking up on a doomed Contingency station in Bethyr’s orbit, advanced start will allow you to start at another location, in a completely different set of circumstances and with different starting equipment. Keep in mind that selecting one of these will skip the tutorial and likely place you in a rather nasty predicament, as they are aimed at players with a bit more experience. Equipment you will be able to find will also match the difficulty of the scenario, so a stranded miner, for example, might wake up in the middle of a debris field, and have to fight for survival right off the bat. They will, however, gain access to advanced equipment such as EVA suits, higher tier mining equipment and more.

 

 

To access these new options, you will first need to progress through the main storyline and reach certain milestones. Once unlocked, advanced starts will be account wide, allowing you to “skip ahead” when creating a new character, or when starting on a different server.

 

Balancing

 

We’ve also gone over various issues players have experienced over time regarding how parts and systems take damage, part bonuses and several other problems regarding quest specific stations. Expect that several under-used modules, such as the Solar Power Module will once again be viable, and that several issues currently present with various quest stations and junkyards will be addressed.

 

Bug Fixes

 

We may not always say it, but bug fixing is part of every update. Granted, some bugs are more annoying than others, and we always work on fixing the most notable issues, or the ones that have the greatest impact on Hellion’s gameplay, before we address smaller problems. So expect another round of bug fixes with the next update.



That would be all for this week. We have deliberately left warp changes and scanning out of this one, as each of these is important and complex enough to warrant a full blog post. So expect a full dive into new warp drive mechanics next week, followed by scanning 2.0. You can be sure that both of these will make quite an impact on the Hellion system.

 

Until next time, fly safe!

Posted by Zero Gravity team