After a record number of beta iterations, Airships v9.2 is out! It introduces small flying units and troops:
Air Hussars, small one-person airships launched from a Hussar Bay. They're strong against light- to mid armoured ships that lack anti-unit weapons (see above) but are very vulnerable to anti-unit weapons and planes.
Triplanes, fast-moving heavier than air flying machines. Strong against light-armoured ships, and a bit better at dodging anti-unit weapons.
Biplanes, light planes that move very fast and are excellent at shooting down other small units like Air Hussars, Triplanes or boarders. Quite hard to hit, but their guns are pretty harmless against decent armour.
Bombers, heavy planes suitable for attacking ships and buildings. Vulnerable to flak fire and smaller fliers.
Air Dragoons, boarding troops equipped with a Suspendium-based float harness. Unlike Marines and Grenadiers, no careful positioning is needed to board enemy ships, as they can just fly over, but they're fairly expensive for their boarding strength.
To compensate for these new threats, small ship-based weapons like rifles and gatling guns are now able to directly shoot down small flying units and troops. This also allows ships to better defend themselves against existing boarding troops like marines.
9.2 also introduces two new monster types using the same code as the dragoons: clockwork wasps and giant bees. You can read about them in the new bestiary pages:
In an ongoing effort to make it easier for people to find others to fight against in multiplayer, 9.2 introduces regular multiplayer hours, one-hour global time segments where people are encouraged to go into the MP lobby and find someone to fight against. I will be present in those times as much as possible, so if nothing else, you can fight against me.
Other improvements include various bugfixes and balance changes, massive performance and pathing improvements for boarding troops, and a rewritten audio system.
What's next? I'm planning on two more 9.x releases. The first one will tackle some of long-running user experience issues and finally make explosions behave more realistically. The second one will round out the bestiary of monsters, finally making use of the Sky Kraken and introducing some other menaces like cultists.
Then it's on to version 10, the final major development cycle before the release! Version 10 will focus on improvements to strategic conquest mode. And then - to victory!