It’s time to present the first of the several content updates that we teased before, titled Rusted Remnants (for some extra background story, click here!). If everything stays on schedule, it’s going to hit Steam next week, and here are the, well, contents.
Ever wonder where all those lost or abandoned boats, breached hulls and rusted remnants of wrecked submarines go? So did we, and now we’ve found them! With this update, you can find them too, strewn about the environment as a haunting reminder that your crew will not be the first to have perished under Europa’s ice.
Just like you can make your own submarines in the editor, you’ll now be able to make your own wrecks to decorate the ocean floor with. And of course, the wrecks are actually not decorative: you can venture inside. Just be careful when you do.
Arguably an even more intriguing addition than the wrecks, the thalamus is a complete reimagining of a monster that used to be known as the carrier earlier in Barotrauma’s development. It’s also a completely new type of creature that can set up shop in a wrecked sub and…well, see for yourself. We’re seriously excited about this new horror and wish you the best scares yet – let us know how we did!
The update wouldn’t be complete without a new vanilla sub. The Azimuth is a sleek and fast sub that you may enjoy between trips to the less lustrous vessels stuck at the bottom of the sea.
Sub editor improvements
While the meat of this update is in the rusted remnants it’s named after, there is a long list of other improvements included as well. First among them: submarine test mode. Yes, you can now press a button in the editor to see how your custom sub will look in the game! Secondly, autosave is finally here.
Voice chat improvements & fixing the radio button
Here, the title almost says it all: the next update will bring back the radio hotkey working like it’s supposed to, and we’re also adding some of the many voice chat improvements requested by our players:
- Local voice chat: speak to players next to you, without everyone within radio range hearing it. The new keybind is T (as in talk) by default.
- Adjustable delay for cutting of voice capture when the push-to-talk key is released. In other words, your message is less likely to get cut off mid-sentence even when the key is released a bit too soon.
- Fix audio being suppressed when someone speaks even if voice chat volume is low or completely muted.
Server moderation tools & more UI improvements
Finally, there are many changes coming in this update to make it easier to curb bad behavior, stemming from karma and UI improvements. There are also new bot commands en route to add more orders to the command UI. Let’s take a look.
Remember when you stopped using karma because of those annoying messages flashing across your screen every five minutes? We toned them down a notch (or ten) to let you focus on playing and let karma do its job behind the scenes. Still, knowledge is power, so server hosts can now get extra information about karma specifically in the server log.
We’ve also tweaked the karma system by adding penalties for some offenses that previously went unpunished. Give it a try next time you’re looking for a serious round, we’re confident the whole system is a lot nicer to use now! As an added bonus, there’s now an official guide for server hosts for making the most of karma and the sort of server they want – find it here.
The tab menu
This is one part of the UI overhaul that didn’t make the Silky Smooth update, but it’s right at home here too, because it gives a lot more power to every player and server hosts/admins in particular.
The tab menu contains up to four tabs: crew, mission, character and traitor. The crew tab in particular brings powerful additions for player-to-player interaction and server moderation. For starters, you can see all the players on the server, including spectators and people in the lobby, along with every player’s role in the crew (job), role in the server (member or admin/mod), and even their ping.
Hosts and server admins can also kick and ban players directly from the crewlist instead of having to use the console. Moderation can actually be administered almost everywhere now, with crewmembers’ names being clickable outside the crewlist too, for example in the chat. Non-moderator server members can mute or vote to kick troublesome crewmates equally easily.
These bot commands complement the new command UI. For now, their additional usefulness is still limited to onboard tasks, such as repairing a specific device or cutting a specific wall, but they are in fact the first step towards making the ship’s AI crew useful companions even for extravehicular activities, such as exploring ruins or wrecks.
Now, we’ve seen that many thought the new command menu made things slower, and while these new contextual commands will not make it faster to order bots around, they do reveal why we chose this design for the command UI. Contextual commands are a must with the ever-increasing need for tasks that bots can complete, and they would not have been possible to implement without a new kind of menu. The new radial menu can accommodate a much larger number of individual commands, allowing us to keep making bots more useful by adding new things for them to do.
If you’re not into the kind of micromanaging that these commands allow, though, have a look at this short and handy Steam post by lordFrith for tips on how to use the new command UI quickly to do the simple, necessary things. And do post your own tips too!
See you next week
We look forward to hearing what you think about the update and can’t wait to release it. For now, many thanks to Nadir for a great update name and a nice weekend to everyone!