Distant Star: 1.2

3 December 2010

So it’s been a few weeks, and the woefully necessary 1.1 update for Distant Star has long since live. 1.1 added a fleet management screen, an autosave feature, and the option to disable/enable the audio, plus fixed a number of distressing crash bugs. It’s been well-received (and the game’s average review rating on iTunes has certainly improved!), but definitely wasn’t the kind of content expansion to which I’d been looking forward.

A new race, and new setup options.

1.2, which should go live in the next few days, is. It adds several gameplay features, including:

  • choose between a slow, medium, and fast-paced game. Slow is the current gameplay speed; medium (the new default) is a more sane (~20 minute) gametype. Fast is, well, fast.
  • choose your color when starting a new game. The game does a better job of picking colors for the AI players as well, so you shouldn’t get black races (which are invisible on the starfield!) and such anymore.
  • the technology screen now asks for confirmation when you switch mid-research, to help avoid losing research progress.
  • A new race: the fungal Cephala, with the ability to spread rapidly across the galaxy but whose ships are only effective in large numbers. They’re extremely weak in the early game, but if they gain a technological advantage can become all but unstoppable.

I’ve been on the hunt for memory leaks lately, and while I did track down several in time for this release I couldn’t pin down the largest two (on the build queue screen and, ironically, in the autosave system) before my self-imposed deadline. With my first meaningful update (1.1 shouldn’t really count) out of the way, my next focus is going to be solving the game’s crashtastic problem once and for all.