Xenonauts 2 – October Update

With October over, it’s once again time for our monthly update.

The big news this month has been the release of Closed Beta V22, which is a fairly significant upgrade on previous builds. This is currently only on our Experimental branch but it should be making its way to the main / default Steam and GOG branches in a week or two when it has had a bit more testing. We’ve done three hotfixes for this build since it was first released and there is a fourth due out shortly that should iron out the most serious remaining bugs we’re aware of.

Establishing Shots

Our priority for V22 has been to improve the opening hour or two of the game, which we’ve done in several ways. The first is to establish the game setting more clearly right from the start of the game, which we’ve done by adding a short text intro that is played when you start a new campaign. Some of you may remember that we’ve set Xenonauts 2 a little before the alien invasion properly begins, with the player first having to deal with the Cleaners and transition from being an intelligence agency into being a military organisation. Of course, we’ve also put some further lore and explanation in the first Research project popup that the player gets.

 
polar

Visual Polish

The second thing we’ve done is to continue to improve the visuals. The new UI graphics for the loading screen and strategy topbar have been added to the game, and all the Xenonauts are now using their final 3D models in the tactical combat. Another cool little detail is that we’ve added a lot more hairstyles to the 3D models, so now a soldier in the ground combat will change hairstyle and colour to (roughly) match the hair shown in their soldier portrait – something that took a surprisingly long time to implement, but makes your starting squad much more distinguished from one another. The visual updates to the tactical mission environments continue too, with the Polar biome getting some attention this month – we’ll be moving onto the fourth Biome (likely the Dock) next month.

Maps and Missions

Thirdly, we’ve added another dozen maps to the game. There’s a lot of Raid missions in the early part of the game, but there was previously only one Raid map per biome. There’s now three Raid maps per biome which means there’s way more variety in the early missions, something that will improve further once we set up the new mission types in the early game in the next major build.  We’re hoping to get that out before we break for Christmas, so stay tuned.

 
Many thanks for reading and for staying up-to-date with our work – as ever please do join us on Discord, the forums or the Steam community if you have any questions.

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