Post news RSS NS2 Build 185 released

NS2 Build 185 is now live on Steam! There have been a lot of bug and balance fixes in this version. Notably, the Lerk and Fade have been re-balanced quite a bit, with the Lerk's abilities changing fundamentally. Now he has high-damage hitscan spikes, along with a "cropduster" type spore trail. Player movement and networking have been smoothed out quite a bit, resulting from some big improvements Max made.

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NS2 Build 185 is now live on Steam! There have been a lot of
bug and balance fixes in this version. Notably, the Lerk and Fade have
been re-balanced quite a bit, with the Lerk's abilities changing
fundamentally. Now he has high-damage hitscan spikes, along with a
"cropduster" type spore trail.Player movement and networking have been smoothed out quite a bit, resulting from some big improvements Max made.

Build 185 changes

  • Lerk v2.0: Removed sniper ability and projectile spore cloud. Added
    spore "trail", which keeps the Lerk in combat and is much more
  • Lerk spikes no longer shoot spike projectiles, but are hit-scan.
    They now do Heavy damage (treat armor like health) and do between 14 and
    17 damage, depending on range (closer is better, but medium/long still
    strong). Also, alt-fire on spikes now fires a cluster of 5 spikes.
  • Improved Lerk flight to allow staying in air and shooting
    downwards. You can now also "airbrake" with shift for more control.
    (thanks twiliteblue!).
  • Added the ability to create Proximity grids from Lua (All yours Matso)
  • Updated the code to use the new TargetCache 2.0 (Thanks Matso)
  • Added the ability to check if a pathing flag is set for a given point and radius
  • Added support to set the output volume for voice chat
  • Added the ability to disable specular highlights for a light


  • Improved Crag's umbra to last 12 seconds (up from 8) and increased radius from 5 to 10
  • Bile bombs now damage MACs.
  • Reduced distress beacon time from 4 to 3 seconds
  • Reduced extractor health/armor from 4,200/900 to 4,400/550 (this is
    the same total HP as the original NS1 level, but I entered it
    incorrectly...represents -500 less health)
  • Lerk is back to his NS1 health/armor levels (125/30, instead of
    200/25). I think he had creeped up due to his maneuverability not being
    good enough and his spikes being slow.
  • Increased ARC health/armor by 50% because they are so fragile and can't currently be repaired
  • Gorge self-heal is now only 50% effective (ala NS1). Sorry battle Gorge!


  • Fixed various networking issues related to prediction (this turned out to be a lot of work)
  • Fixed erratic movement when players collide with each other
  • Changed Shade disorientation to use a scalar value instead of boolean (for shader effect and DSP effects)
  • Fixed bug where the amount of the Disorient effect was not proportional do your distance to a Shade
  • Fixed an issue where after moving a whip it would no longer block
    pathing along with leaving a stale obstacle in its old location.
  • Fixed an issue where you could be standing next to a structure or a
    player and if you were not looking at them they would not get sighted.
  • Fixed an issue where if you scanned cloaked or camouflaged units they still would not be sighted.
  • Fixed an issue where when computing LOS stale entities would be checked for LOS
  • Removed noxious desiredPitch/desiredRoll code that was being
    executed when it shouldn't have been (possibly resulting in mouselook
  • Fixed an issue where voice chat would be distorted by shade DSP
  • Players can no longer +use things while attacking (fixes problems with looping sounds while opening armory, etc.)
  • Lerk spore effects now created client-side (optimization).
  • Don't play flinch sounds, particles, sounds etc. more than every
    second to reduce message spam and improve aesthetics (esp. for rifles
    vs. structures)
  • Added commander-specific res_received sounds
  • Fixed bug where specifying that a prop does not casts shadows would not disabled shadows in the Editor
  • Fixed bug where cinematics created on level load were not deleted when the level was changed
  • Show model of last alien you were when you were dead on game end (also while commanding, evolving, etc.)
  • Fixed problem with Embryo not initializing some variables when going to ready room after being killed as an egg
  • Added new team-specific distress beacon sounds so respawning
    marines always hear it positionally when far away. Also added new "mega
    spawn" sound.
  • Removed Shade DSP effects and replaced with looping 2D soundscape to see if that works better.
  • Added local looping 2D sound when cloaked or camouflaged
  • Fixed an issue where you could not recycle buildings until they had been built
  • Fixed an issue with teleporting drifters
  • Fixed bug where the first person Skulk bite animation would not play under some circumstances
  • Fixed bug causing player to instantly die if they spawned while their spectator camera was in a death trigger
  • Fixed case where parts of the alien armor circle GUI were being rendered when they shouldn't while animating
  • Fixed bug where prop_dynamic objects would have their physics
    objects simulated differently on the client and server (caused movement
    problems in Ventilation on ns2_summit)
  • New structures can now be built after recycling a structure without selecting a different structure first (Thanks Matso!)
  • Fixed an issue where unbuilt shades would cause the disorient effect to marines
  • Fixed an issue where it was possible for unbuilt shades to possible cloak things
  • Fixed the teleporting drifters!
  • Moved death messages over a bit to the left when player is a commander so they can see them entirely (Thanks twiliteblue!)
  • Fixed an issue where the shade would go crazy and try cloaking
    everything even if something had recently been attacked or uncloaked.
  • Fixed bug where going through the "back" of a Phase Gate would make you come out the back of the connected Phase Gate
  • Fixed bug causing the Whip to play it's idle sound before being fully built
  • Fixed bug causing some death messages to show "#nil" as the killer
  • Fixed bug causing the Fade to go into an invalid blink state when switching weapons while blinking
  • Fixed an issue where weapons were giving LOS to all players. Players will now set the relevancy of their weapons.
  • Spores now do damage to players if their eyes are in the cloud instead of the middle of their body
  • Reduced Fade stab (secondary attack) range to be the same as primary (it was way too long at 3 meters).
  • Fixed bug that killed just-finished ARC if you tried to build another ARC or MAC before it drove out of the Robotics Factory.


  • Build Collision checking no longer uses tracing unless the structure can be built on a wall, instead it checks the pathing mesh
  • Structures now apply a no build flag to the pathing mesh when created.
  • Left clicking on the minimap just moves the commander view; before
    it allowed placing of structures and doing other weird stuff but it was
    confusing and inconsistent with other RTS games.
  • Added the ability to make bots passive (Thanks Matso)
  • Spectator camera no longer collides and other improvements
  • All alien structures, players, and other creatures now auto-heal
  • Disabled the marine/common/hit sound when the flamethrower is giving damage as it is too repetitive
  • The Gorge will now rotate up and down while belly sliding according to the angle of the ground


  • added shade cloak sounds
  • New flash-light sound
  • Better countdown sound
  • Nicer marine footstep sounds for infestation
  • Better sounds for joining aliens or marines from ready room
  • More sci-fi for armoury open and close sounds
  • More snarls and aggression for skulk bite, leap, pain and death sounds
  • Simon is awesome
  • More of an echolocation feel to the alien vision sounds
  • Mixing, including being able to hear when u register a hit from a distance as a marine
  • sounds for new lerk abilities
  • Shade disorientate now using a sound rather than DSP
  • Mixed cloak mode sound and beacon sounds
  • Battles now sound more epic: EQ and dynamics adjustments for both sides
  • Marines now have a flatline heart monitor sound when they die
  • Better sound for entering the hive , receiving res and regenerating as an alien


  • Visual changes to Crevice
  • Increased space around Crossroads tech point
  • Set Dynamic:False for dynamic props in Ventilation
  • Replaced the Tech Point in Marine Expansion (Holoroom) with a res node.
  • Extended corridors on marine side.
  • Changed lighting in repair room.
  • Visual changes to Crevice
  • Increased space around Crossroads tech point
  • Fixed power point powering Crossroads instead of noname hallway
  • Adjusted collision geometry at Marine Start ceiling
  • Shortened route to Observation from Marine Start.
  • Replaced Marine tunnel section adjacent to Marine Start with
    offloading area, moved main entrance (route to AS is somewhat longer
  • Reduced memory footprint by reducing unique number of props.
  • Added Simons's optimised and updated sounds.
  • Set many props to ignore pathing, should improve loading times.


  • Extended corridors on marine side to create space between rooms.
  • Changed lighting theme in repair room.

As always, if you want to get in on the beta, you can pre-order Natural Selection 2 from here. Now it's back to work!


Suckered up and bought NS2. I can't wait to play it. A little too laggy right now, but a better graphics card is in the mail. *crossed fingers* I hope it gets here soon.

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I have been playing NS2 since I got in the beta and every time one of these updates comes out the difference is massive.

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