Post news RSS NS2 Build 186/187 released

Well it took us longer than we were hoping, but Build 186 is now done and on Steam. The goal of this patch was to fix as much as possible so we could spend 187 working on some new features. We improved performance, fixed many bugs (big and small) and added some new interface and usability features.

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NS2 Build 187 is now live!

This was just a quick patch we wanted to do to take care of the big issues in 186. Now that the game is running fairly well, our goal is to spend a few weeks to put some big features into the game!

Build 187 changes


  • Changed pistol damage type from Heavy to Light and increased primary damage from 20 to 25 and alt from 30 to 40 ("finisher")


  • Workaround to address bug where aliens sometimes didn't respawn. (thanks dePara!)
  • Fixed bug where some aspects of blink could be triggered when you didn't have enough energy (thanks Schimmel!)
  • Fixed the MAC height to now be in line with its default model orientation
  • Fixed bug with sentries where sometimes they would ignore targets (thanks Schimmel!)
  • Fixed script error caused by an alien player trying to execute a saying in slot 4 or 5
  • Hives and Command Stations now orient to tech points properly again.
  • Fixed bug preventing some entities (tech points, resource points, etc) from appearing on the minimap
  • Fixed bug where parameters to SoundEventInstance:SetParameter() were in the wrong order
  • Fixed error return code in SoundEffect:SetParameter()
  • Only set parameters on Flamethrower looping sound when playing
  • Fix for "perform arithmetic on local 'eggIndex' (a nil value)"


  • Alien eggs no longer "think" (optimization)


  • Arcing electricity sound layer for power nodes
  • Better commander drop cyst sound

NS2 Build 186

Well it took us longer than we were hoping, but Build 186 is now done and on Steam. The goal of this patch was to fix as much as possible so we could spend 187 working on some new features. We improved performance, fixed many bugs (big and small) and added some new interface and usability features.

Build 186 changes

Build 186 preview video (not comprehensive):


  • Ammo packs, Med packs, and weapons on the ground now have an icon hovering over when you are in need of them
  • Spectators can now toggle between small, big, or no minimap visible
  • Infestation now has animating parts making it seem more alive (Thanks Schimmel!)
  • Added Deadspace-style animated waypoint indicator (lineon the ground showing you were to go)
  • An icon will now display on the HUD when the player is standing over a dropped weapon, they can press their drop weapon key to swap their current weapon with the dropped weapon
  • New randomized alien egg spawning system. Egg spawning rates also scale with # of players. Many more eggs are created around hives as well. Egg entities are now ignored
  • Added ability for dead aliens to choose their egg to spawn from
  • Added new Assault Rifle for Marines
  • Team and personal resources are now visible on the scoreboard to any player on the spectator team


  • Sped up marine rifle reload by 25% to make running out of ammo less harsh (marines die a lot when reloading)
  • Trying new alien egg spawn system, to allow marines more momentum when attacking hives, to allow marines to make earlier pushes, to reduce spawn-camping and to add to the atmosphere. Now hives start with 0 eggs, get a new egg every 15 seconds (was 13) and can grow up to 16 eggs. (experimental)
  • Increased GL cost from 20 to 25
  • Lowered grenade damage from 150 to 130
  • Increased ARC movement speed from 2.5 to 5
  • Ammo packs can now fill the clip of a weapon, if the reserve ammo is full (this is especially for Commanders buffing marines)
  • Increased marine armor +use repair from 12 to 18 to avoid tedium
  • Increased armory armory resupply speed by ~40% to avoid excessive waiting (esp. with armor)


  • Infamous black screen bug fixed (Thanks to all the play testers who helped us figure out the reproduction steps!)
  • Fixed bug causing the Alien buy menu to remain on the screen in some cases (Thanks Frhoe and Colin!)
  • Fixed an issue where powerpoint gave LOS all the time now they only give LOS when being attacked and a short period of time afterwards. This makes it more fair to the Aliens as they can now be more sneaky when attacking power nodes.
  • The recycle button no longer shows up on commander stations that are currently occupied. This is to prevent any possibility of of recycling while occupied. Still allow to recycle when vacant.
  • Lerk spikes now have infinite range, to make them more intuitive. Made slightly less accurate to compensate.
  • Fixed bug where ARCs couldn't be repaired by MACs. MACs can also repair each other.
  • The local player will be able to hear Swarm and Frenzy sound effects now
  • Fixed bug preventing Frenzy from working properly in all cases
  • Fixed problems with GL reloading from ammo packs. Fixed problems where ammo packs couldn't always be picked up when needed when holding the GL. Fixed problem where GL could hold a total of 9 grenades instead of 8.
  • Fixed issue where you can place structured on top of each other.
  • The distress beacon text will no longer persist on the screen forever in some cases
  • The local alien no longer will display a hive sight blip for itself
  • Fixed bug where hive spawns first egg immediately when hive was created
  • Unbuilt structures can no longer be seen by other units thus do not provide LOS.
  • Fixed the ability to weld yourself
  • Players do not heal macs now
  • Unconnected cysts no longer get auto-healed and take damage
  • Fixed bug where Arms Lab didn't require power to function
  • Fixed tech tree so research is properly enabled and disabled when structures are destroyed or they become unpowered and repowered
  • Marine damage upgrades now work for all damage types, not only Normal damage
  • Fixed bug where marine upgrades depended on the Armory instead of ArmsLab
  • Fixed bug where having multiple research nodes that depended on each other weren't disabled/enabled properly
  • Fixed an issue where it was possible when exiting a hive you would get an error about not having a GetEnergy function
  • Fixed bug causing dead Marines to respawn in Marine Start instead of near the Observatory during a distress beacon
  • Fixed an issue where dead players could provide LOS
  • Fixed an issue where Macs would spawn in the ground and in weird locations when being built from the Robo Factory
  • The flamethrower effects are no longer visible when switching to the pistol
  • Fixed an issue where if you had more than one commander and you were not the original owner of the unit you were commanding you would not be set as the owner for any structures you ordered that unit to build.
  • Fixed an issue where Drifters would not revert to there hover location if they failed to build something because of a player or another unit blocking them
  • Fixed an issue where you could not select Power Nodes as an Alien Commander
  • Fixed an issue where the Flare animation would play and then stop and then Flare would go off... We now just do the Flare when the animation is done
  • Fixed an issue where structures were not properly being added as obstacles into the pathing mesh
  • Fixed an issue where certain structures pathing obstacles would be floating
  • Fixed Pathing debugging
  • Fixed an issue where MACs/Drifters could teleport to pathing nodes outside the main map area
  • Fixed an issue with the squad text being in a silly place
  • Scan entities cannot take damage anymore
  • When joining a new team... old player is removed from the spawn queue of the old team
  • Fixed a possible script error when spawning as an alien as the round was ending
  • Can only weld a marine if you are a marine! No freebies for Aliens!
  • The Observatory will no longer beacon Marines after it has been destroyed
  • Fixed an issue where structures built by the marine commander did not show up right away
  • Fixed an issue where if you went to the ready room as a marine spectator it would not correctly spawn you as a marine
  • Fixed an issue where the Armory would keep resupplying dead players
  • Observatory Distress Beacon will not spawn players outside the world anymore
  • Fixed issue where structures being powered by power packs would not properly powerdown if the power pack was destroyed
  • Fixed an issue where you could use the Alien buy menu before the game started... You can still bring it up before the game starts but the message on the button states that game has not started and thus is unclickable
  • Fixed floating ARCs
  • Fixed an issue with the ARC Idle sound playing while deployed
  • Commander selection returns to the Command Station/Hive when the selected entity is destroyed or recycled, this fixes a bug where a new structure could not be built after a previously selected structure was destroyed until selecting a new structure
  • Fixed an issue where if an alien was cloaked it would still show them on the minimap if they were in min LOS range
  • A player that was about to spawn in an egg changing teams would cause that egg to never spawn another player, eggs are not so monogamous anymore
  • Resource received on kill sound effect will now only play for the player who earned the resources instead of everyone on the team
  • Tech is no longer allowed if the game has not started
  • Fixed an issue where client side pathing data was not removing objects
  • Fixed bile bomb broken bug
  • Don't execute Commander targeted actions when clicking on top of the UI
  • Fixed an issue where power events where not getting unregistered when an entity died which could result in weird power behavior when rounds reset
  • Fixed memory leak when opening the armory menu (opening it and closing it enough would eventually cause an out of memory and client crash)
  • Fixed bug allowing Power Nodes to be damaged by Marine players before a round starts for the first time
  • Fixed bug where Fade initial blink cost was wrong (it was .1 instead of 10 by accident)
  • Fixed bug where RoboticsFactory could be created with an orientation that would allow MACs and ARCs to be created in an invalid spot. Don't allow RoboticsFactory to be built where it creates units on top of attach points either (tech points, nozzles)
  • Fixed an issue where if you build a power source before building a structure it would not properly power the device
  • Fixed bug where bile bomb upgrade disappeared if you bought it then evolved another trait
  • Fixed an issue where the ARC idle sound would not stop playing when the arc died
  • Don't show 0 health when less than 1 health but still alive
  • Fixed bug where players could spam j1/j2 and unbalance teams. Also, can no longer join another playing team without going to the ready room first (but with cheats 1, you can still type "switch")
  • Fixed an issue where structures that did not require power did not have their deploy effects being played
  • Fixed an issue where whips would leave stale pathing obstacles when they would unroot and move
  • Removed ability to have the quote character " in a player's name which was causing some problems on the server
  • Fixed an issue where whips would float
  • Fixed an issue where whips would play their walking animation forever
  • Fixed an issue where whips would take damage while moving
  • Fixed bug where phase gate idle sounds continued to play after it was destroyed
  • Gorges can no longer build structures on resource nozzles or tech points
  • Fixed an issue where Cloaked/Camo structures and units where not getting uncloaked when scanned
  • Fixed drifters from spawning outside the map sometimes
  • Structure placement is now more strict when checking for collisions. Changed extents of all structures to be more accurate (precalculated from the model)
  • Phase gates now can only be placed such that there is some room at the exit
  • Tech Points that are owned by a specific team no longer show up as valid build locations. This fixes the issue where you would try to build at marine start and it would pick the heliport tech point
  • You can no longer spam taunt sounds
  • Removed "error" sound when a ready room player taunted
  • Fade blink can no longer be spammed to weird effect
  • Starting a blink takes more energy, but being ethereal costs less (tried this before, but wasn't right)
  • Made the visual effects of the flame thrower less spammy
  • Fixed problems where players sometimes didn't die when the command station closed around them, being protected. Forever
  • Fixed bug where you could only build structures on attach points (tech points, resource nozzles) with the same team number. This meant that players couldn't build Hives/CommandStations on their enemy's starting position after it had been destroyed
  • Fixed an issue where the Obs LOS range was smaller than its detect range
  • Fixed an issue where scan was not giving LOS because it thought it was an unbuilt structure
  • Cloaked drifters uncloak when they attack
  • If the stop order is given to a drifter while its building it now properly resets itself
  • Added the Power Point destroyed sound back into the game
  • Fixed bug causing the Sentry to become inoperable after ordering it to stop as it is moving
  • Added back in cool flamethrower audio response when swinging it around rapidly (sounds flanged)
  • The player will no longer receive auto-orders while dead


  • When updating AutoHeal we do off infestation/healing in a single loop instead of two loops
  • Reworked how the drifters reset themselves when they fail to build
  • We now enforce a max height above the ground
  • Changed Waypoints to use the pathing system instead of the old nav waypoint system
  • Enable code that will filter our static props that are flagged not be included in the pathing mesh
  • Egg icons are now half the normal size on the minimap
  • Re-enabled multi-threading support for animation
  • Removed freelook when dead (to avoid seeing something you shouldn't)


  • Optimized server map blip updating (Thanks Matso!)
  • Improved client and server performance when interpolating entities
  • Optimized updating the blips on the minimap
  • Moved the Flamethrower effects to the client
  • Broadphase collision detection optimization
  • When counting max entities to determine valid building placement, don't count eggs
  • Players on different teams can no longer hear other players before the game starts (interferes with pre-game strategizing, ie "Let's relocate to Data Core...doh")
  • Spectators can hear team voice chat when they're following a member of that team (this will be for non-tournament mode only, once that's in)
  • Addressed problems where spawning is confusing/jarring. Now dead aliens go right to the egg instead of floating where they died
  • Sentry will now fire visible tracer rounds like other Marine weapons
  • Observatories now prevent cloaking (players/structures) and camouflage (players) in range.
  • Added new phase gate idle animation when active and linked to another phase gate
  • Phase gates can now be used even if there are players blocking the gate on the receiving end. A marine may spawn inside the player, but they will move apart (better than killing a big alien automatically, and not killing them allows griefing)
  • Added taunt sound for Marine, Skulk and Lerk
  • Increased acceleration on Fade blink to feel more responsive
  • Grenade launcher now starts with full ammo and one in the clip (it doesn't need initial reload)
  • Rifle now starts with full ammo


  • Nicer tail and more reverb on guns
  • Added a Cyst idle sound
  • A bunch of eq to ambient sounds, and others
  • New sound for sentry scanning, fade swipe hits on metal
  • More metallic sounding reloads and deploys
  • Armory has a nice oneshot sound when opening the menu
  • Better grenade bounces
  • Grenade fire has more metallic sound now
  • Occlusion (sounds now become muffled as they move away, or move behind walls)
  • Lerk spikes sounding better with the increased ROF
  • Sounds for robotics factory opening and closing
  • Sound for commander performing a scan
  • Upgrading weapon/armour/ability now has a sound to let players know the upgrade is complete for both teams
  • Improvements to axe, armory, flamethrower and GL launcher deploy sounds
  • Better invalid sound
  • Sounds for whip unroot walk and root
  • Better alien chat msg sound
  • Sound for when a drifter turns into a structures
  • Fixed up some bugs where sounds wouldn't play more than once
  • Timing improvements to whip attack, phase gate deploy, observatory deploy, and axe swing
  • Better parasite sound for the skulk
  • New skulk jump
  • Gorge dry reaching when he hasnt got the res to make a structure
  • A sound for whip fury attack
  • Better / less glitchy count down sound
  • Nicer fade blinking sounds
  • Trying out a new pistol fire sound
  • Fixing beacon and alien voice sound
  • Better rifle butt sound
  • Better fade jump
  • Small change to res received for marines
  • Better skulk bite impact sound
  • Fixed some clicks when looping some sounds
  • Arcing electricity sound layer for power nodes
  • Better commander drop cyst sound


  • Added vent from crevice/alien start to crossroads/summit reception
  • Changed crossroads hive area so that marines can't shoot it from a long ways away
  • Set Dynamic:False for dynamic props in Ventilation
  • Fixed power point powering Crossroads instead of noname hallway
  • Adjusted collision geometry at Marine Start ceiling

As always, if you want to get in on the beta, you can pre-order Natural Selection 2 from here.

Now it's time to work on Build 187. We are hoping to get the long-awaited new occlusion system in, add an entirely new animation system and tool and add some new Tier 3 tech on both sides.

Thanks for being patient and onward!

Paxton - - 394 comments

So many fixes, and so many sound bits!
Also the new assault rifle is spiffy.

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Kokumotsu - - 528 comments

game looks really interesting

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Mkilbride - - 2,785 comments

Very nice, this patch improved performance and stability by a good margin. 3-4 more patches like this and then I'd say you could focus on gameplay elements alone. :P

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Zedrion - - 157 comments

WoW!!! so many fixes and improvements. keep up the great work guys. btw off topic but, where can i see a image of what the Exo Suit will look like?

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