Progress on StarDrive proceeds smoothly, although the work is difficult and the hours are long. Our art team is busily creating new aliens and spaceships while our design team continues to push the ball forward with new features.
A new patch is on its way; it is being uploaded tonight. The two main enhancements are the addition of save games and the addition of fog of war. Implementing the saving and loading, while techinically unchallenging, was a serious chore due to the massive amount of data that needed to be saved. For each and every ship, we needed to save each and every ship module, making sure to record its health and position and so on. We needed to save all of the AI brains so that our ships and empires remember what they were doing when we load the game back up. Long story short, I think I got it all. If you notice any hiccups in saving and loading games, please report to the forums so I can dispatch our space marines to kill any bugs.
Fog of War was a more technical challenge, and a bigger challenge from a design point of view. I have implemented a classic fog of war system, where the map starts mostly opaque except for the areas directly in your long range sensor radius, which are completely clear. Explored areas that are no longer inside your sensor range are slightly more opaque, but not quite as opaque as unexplored areas. Please share your feedback with me on our forums so I can tweak this mechanic to your liking. We will have many new ship modules that affect the fog of war and the ship sensor ranges coming soon.
The other patched items are relatively straightforward. A number of tweaks and bug fixes should make StarDrive a little easier to play.
Next up we will be putting in our ground combat system and the AI will start attacking your planets with more cohesive fleets and ground forces. The game will become more of a game. We will also be implementing new fleet mechanics and some new UI elements. Look for this patch in about a week.
Until then, signing off.