V1.5.4.4

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The main part of this release is a stack of balance tweaks that have been floating around the forum and/or my head. Hover has a few nerfs while some more maligned units were buffed to try to bring them up to a decent strength. Dagger has a damage reduction and the effect on shots-to-kill can be seen in the above image.

There are also a few fixes, mostly related to Planetwars.

Balance[edit]

Banisher:

* Reload time 2.3 -> 2.15

Copperhead:

* Health 1200 -> 1400

For a tank, 1200 health at 550 metal is very squishy.

Dagger:

* Damage 110.1 -> 100.1.

Most raiders have particular amounts of health to leave them unaffected by this change. The exceptions are Scorcher, Pyo, Panther and Kodachi which each take an extra shot to kill. See the release picture for the changes in the number of shots to kill each unit. This is a very Quants Rule change and probably the most extreme before less polarizing changes would be required.

Dart:

* Cost 40 -> 35

Flail:

* Health 1300 -> 950 (it costs 300 compared to Copperhead 550)
* Reload time 5.0 -> 5.2

Flail has theoretically poor stats compared to most other AA but they hit a sweet spot and result in a powerful unit. Hence the fairly generic nerf.

Glaive:

* Speed 4.0 -> 3.9 (was 3.8)

The speed buff may have been too much.

Hacksaw:

* Range 420 -> 430
* Missile maneuverability increased by 28%
* Missile speed reduced by 5%.
* Burst gap 0.7s -> 0.55s

It is hard to test whether Raven can dodge Hacksaw but increased maneuverability and reduced speed should do the trick. A single Raven can still kill a Hacksaw but dies in the process.

Jack:

* Health 5000 -> 6000

Mace:

* Acceleration increased by 27%
* Brake rate increased by 20%
* Turn rate increased by 30%
* Turret turn rate increased by 100%
* Range 345 -> 350

A few years ago we saw powerful Mace rush strategies with stats which resulted in nerfs which are now basically undone. The turret turn rate increase is a new change.

Newton:

* Gravity strength increased by 20%

Racketeer:

* Cost 380 -> 360 (was 350)

The recent cost increase may have been a bit extreme.

Roach:

* Removed slow upon unburrowing (20% speed for 0.6 seconds).

Rogue:

* Damage 280 -> 350

This is a fairly crazy change intended to show us what happens if Rogue is powerful.

Scalpel:

* Turn rate reduced by 5%
* Ranged 450 -> 440

Scalpel was a bit too powerful. This is a weird nerf that sidesteps the issue of nerfing something that it is notably good at. Range is a fairly important attribute.

Skuttle:

* Jump speed 5.2 -> 6.0

Most Skuttle usage should revolve around getting to the right location. Slow flight time lead to a bit too much randomness in movement prediction and target acquisition times for units such as Defender.

Sumo:

* Gravity strength increased by 20%

Tick:

* Explosion speed increased by about 200%
* Edge effectiveness 0 -> 0.4
* Removed slow upon unburrowing (20% speed for 0.6 seconds).
* Damage 2000 -> 2500

Planetwars Mechanics[edit]

Changed the length of each phase:

* Pick a planet to attack 30 minutes -> 20 minutes.
* Defend your planet 10 minutes -> 5 minutes.

These changes are required to counteract the downtime caused by the extra faction.

Visuals and Interface[edit]

* Added a shiny new Spectre weapon impact effect that indicates the approximate direction that the shot came from.
* Added a battle information panel to remind players of the context of the planetwars battle that they are fighting.
* Added buttons to the global commands bar for toggling the structure/evacuation panel, the battle information panel and the attrition tracker panel (if the widget is enabled).

Fixes[edit]

* Removed orbital drop commander, all commanders now spawn at the start of the game. This fixes a bug where late joiners would not receive their double commander.
* Fixed mapborder Z-fighting with startboxes.
* Fixed planetwars structure ownership not taking planetwars rank into account. Now, for example, the Emperor will always control the structures in the battle unless the owner of the structure is present. This holds for all relations through the command structure of each faction.
* Added a minimap brightness override for Obsidian and Onyx Cauldron.
* Fixed missing planetwars structures on certain maps.