Commander Reclaim Ruins Planetary Annihilation [updated]

UPDATE: a video demonstrating Com Reclaim Fix has been added to the article.

Over time every RTS develops a meta; units come into favour and fall out of it, people develop new tactics which defeat the old. An RTS doesn’t become stale until a strategy emerges that is so dominant is becomes required above all others.

Commander Reclaim

In the article Commander Reclaim: How To Ruin PA, elodea makes the argument that Commander reclaim meets these criteria. A strategy which comes off the back of changes designed to make the Commander harder to repair or reclaim to death, earlier this year Qzipco discovered that it could be used as a means to jump start your economy.

Elodea walks you through what he sees as the problem and proposes some fixes for it. Check out the full article and let us know your thoughts.

Legion Expansion v0.14.1 released

This one is a small patch ahead of the Andreas G 4 Casual Legion tournament.

General

  • AI updated for Starcannon changes

Balance

  • Comet nerf:
    • Added 3 second cooldown on arrival at a new planet
  • Starcannon buff:
    • Can now build the Orbweaver

Fixes

  • Stoke and Corsair now display the correct cost to build
  • AI no longer tries to have the Praetorian build things it can’t

Countdown to a Casual Saturday

This Saturday we’re running the Andreas G 4 Casual tournament. What’s a casual? It’s an opportunity for players who may not be among the top ranks of the game to get a chance to shine. All players are welcome, but with enough sign-ups we split platinum and uber players into their own brackets.

Andreas G 4 Casual Legion

If you’ve ever wanted to be in a tournament, have your games cast, get people cheering for you on stream, then this is the tournament to join. Regardless of your ability there’s good fun to be had, and as a double-elimination tournament you’re guaranteed two games minimum. Who knows, perhaps it will be you in the final?

This particular casual is a Legion casual. This means you can play either as the MLA (the original faction) or the Legion. Twice the choice, so there’s bound to be something to suit your style of play. If you haven’t heard of the Legion then check out our article on the Legion Expansion.

Want to see what a casual looks liket? Check out the previous tournament, Andreas G 3 Casual, and have a look at some of the VODs.

Legion Expansion v0.14.0 released

Following a week of extensive testing and feedback we’ve prepared another patch for the Legion Expansion. Now that it’s available to all Planetary Annihilation: TITANS players we’re getting a much better idea of what works and what doesn’t out in the field.

This time around we’ve implemented some changes designed to help you migrate from the MLA to the Legion, moving units into build locations that best fit the role the MLA unit in that position would have held. We’ve also nerfed a couple of units that seemed abusable, though we’ll be seeing how those Starcannon changes fare. In addition we’ve worked to eliminate some unnecessary micro on the Salamander, while hopefully not allowing you to micro it when you want to.

Lastly, there are some general fixes to improve the general polish of the mod.

Check out the full changelog below.

General

  • Switched Deathmark and Havoc on the build bar so their positions are better aligned with MLA roles
  • Switched Salamander and Infiltrator on the build bar so their positions are better aligned with MLA roles
  • Added a firing effect to the Miniman
  • Added idle effect to Salamander
  • Salamander turrets now auto fire rather than requiring manual attack orders

Balance

Full unit stats are available from PA Lobby.

  • Salamander buff:
    • Turrets now automatically deployed though manual deployment is still possible
    • Turret health increased from 1500 to 2500
    • Turret damage increased from 10 to 15
  • Infiltrator nerf:
    • Metal cost increased from 300 to 450
    • Health decreased from 350 to 250
    • Rate of fire decreased from 4 to 2
    • Increased angle of fire from 180 to 360 degrees
  • Starcannon nerf:
    • Removed option to build Enforcer
    • Removed option to build Scorpion
    • Build power decreased from 50/2100 to 45/1900
    • Rate of fire decreased from 6 to 3
    • Unit pod velocity decreased from 150 to 120
    • Metal cost reduced from 1500 to 900
  • Meteor change:
    • Drone storage capacity reduced from 18 to 14
    • Drone damage increased from 15 to 20

Fixes

  • Welcome message now links to correct Legion Expansion forum thread
  • Fix bot fabricator having wrong metal cost
  • Meteor launch smoke now shoots in the correct direction
  • Miniman bomb explosion effect now timed correctly with explosion
  • Rockteeth given identical rate of fire and damage as other Commanders to ensure fairness
  • Fixed bug preventing Necromancer from sometimes spawning all its Purgers

New Community Release 94684 means Legion Expansion games on Uber servers

Over the past few months Uber and mikeyh have been hard at work on the largest piece of work done to Planetary Annihilation since TITANS dropped. It’s a beast, but its been worth the wait. And yes, it means the Legion Expansion works in multiplayer again on Uber’s servers.

If you’re on the PTE branch make sure to switch back to the normal branch in Steam.

Firstly it introduces an native mod manager called Community mods to replace PA Mod Manager. It’s all handled in-game now, ensuring everyone has access to the same great mods only a small section of the community was accessing before. They even auto-update now! Personally, I’d urge everyone to install PA Chat.

Custom server support has gone native, no mods required. If there’s a custom server up and running then everyone will be able to see it, making it much easier to fill up those 32 player FFAs the community loves to run.

On top of that are changes that are perhaps less sexy, but just as vital. Modding support has been expanded even further, introducing a number of changes that made the Legion Expansion possible. There are more colours, more server options, better replay support…

Finally it squashes a hell of a lot of long-standing bugs. Last slot bugged out in your lobby? Squashed. PA selected your integrated graphics card rather than discrete? Squashed. Chronocom non-responsive at the end of a game? Squashed.

There’s a lot to this patch.

You can leave feedback for Uber in the Planetary Annihilation: TITANS patch thread and the classic Planetary Annihilation patch thread.

Summary of Changes

  1. Community Mods in-game mod manager
  2. Custom Server support
  3. Server improvements
  4. New modding capabilities
  5. Numerous UI enhancements
  6. Tons of bug fixes

1. Community Mods in game mod manager

Planetary Annihilation TITANS PTE 94132 Community Mods

No external application required. Uninstall your mods in PAMM first and then reinstall them through Community Mods.
  • added community mods in game mod manager to start menu
  • added auto updating of mods
  • added dependency tracking to automatically enable and disable dependency mods
  • replaces PAMM (PA Mod Manager) external application

2. Custom Server support

server_setup

No mods required.
  • added game server browser support for hosting, joining and spectating custom server games
  • added game invite support for custom servers
  • added game configuration in new game support for custom servers
  • added reconnect support for custom servers to start menu
  • custom servers now advertise max players and max spectators

3. Servers

Applies to Uber and custom servers:
  • added metalClusters, metalDensity, landing_zones_count, metal_spots_count and planetCSG_count to game beacons and system info
  • added support for 32 colours
  • added support for custom commanders
  • added support for selecting of AI commander
  • added server mod identifiers to game beacons
  • added support for custom servers to advertise max players and max spectators in game config beacons
  • added –max-players and –max-spectators command line options
  • added –server-password command line option
  • added –default-lobby-name command line option
  • added –default-game-type command line option
  • added –replay-timeout command line option to set timeout when replay will be written even if clients still connected
  • added –replay-filename command line option
  • added UTCTIMESTAMP token for –replay-filename to automatically name replays based UTC timestamp
  • added support for lobby chat history
  • added support for lobby custom json messages (will also add to playing)
  • improved support for server mods status
  • added support for server mods in replays and saved games
  • fixed null secondary colour causing server crash when starting game and showing new game commanders cinematic
  • added validation of secondary colour

4. Modding

Planetary Annihilation Legion Expansion

General

  • added support for Legion Expansion mod
  • added support for companion mods to reduce the size of large server mods
  • added game info to session, connect_to_game and various scenes:
  • serverType / game_server_type (local|uber|custom)
  • serverSetup / game_server_setup (game|replay|loadsave)
  • gameType / game_type (Galactic War|Ladder1v1|FFA|TeamArmies)
  • gameModIdentifiers / game_mod_identifiers (work in progress)
  • deprecated joinLocalServer / join_local_server in preference to isLocalGame / is_local_game
  • changed isLocalGame to use the same is_local_game session key everywhere
  • changed join_lobby helper to use isLocalGame
  • updated to latest knockoutjs 3.4
  • added save method to storage extenders

New Game

  • added support for model.send_message(‘set_ai_commander’, {id: model.playerId(), commander: commanderSpecString});
  • fixed empty spectators (playersWithoutArmies)
  • added spectatorCount observable
  • added emptySpectatorSlots observable
  • added serverModsState (uploading/downloading/mounting/mounted) string observable
  • added buildVersion string observable
  • added isLocalGame boolean observable
  • added gameModIdentifiers
  • added serverMods observable array
  • added gameCheats observable arary
  • added localChatMessage(name, message)
  • added mods lobby chat message type
  • added registerHoldReady(identifier, info)
  • added unregisterHoldReady(identifier)
  • added registerJsonMessageHandler(identifier, handler, priority)
  • added unregisterJsonMessageHandler(identifier, handler)
  • added sendJsonMessage(object)

Live Game

  • exposed listen_to_spectators in GameOptionModel
  • fixed lobbyId not set

Build Bar

  • improved modability of build bar (wondible)

Icon Atlas / Strategic Icons

  • added engine support for server mods and reloading (Uber)

Uberbar

  • updated to latest strophe (xmpp used by uberbar and PA Chat)

APIs

  • added api.download for community mods manager (Uber)
  • added api.file.list for community mods manager (Uber)
  • added api.file.zip for community mods manager (Uber)
  • added api.memory.remount for community mods manager (Uber)
  • added api.mods.getMounted (Uber)
  • deprecated api.mods.getMountedMods (Uber)

Engine

  • implemented watcher support for OS X / linux
  • implemented memory mounted shader reloading

5. Polish

Game Server Browser

  • added saving of game server browser filters with reset filters button

Connect To Game

  • added status messages when mounting server mods
  • added busy animation
  • added mounting of server mods when starting game (moved from new game lobby to fix many UI issues)

Galactic War

  • changed default save name to include time

New Game

  • added lobby chat history
  • added planet radius, metal / custom metal, custom landing and custom csg in a tooltip to planets
  • added halleys required and increased size of planet icons
  • added highlights to econ rate when not 1.0
  • moved mounting of server mods when starting game to connect to game

Live Game

  • changed default save name to include time
  • changed global spectator chat default to team chat
  • added spectator label for spectator chat

Live Game Planets

  • added display of metal spots count to tooltip in planets summary
  • reduced size of planets summary tooltip to minimise overlap with preview
  • added metal spots count to planet list with localised metal tooltip
  • reduced height of planets list for large systems with many planets

Live Game Players

  • added right click look at player in PIP
  • added right click track commander in PIP

Uberbar

  • added searching by display name
  • added lobby status to game invites
  • added cancelling of game invites if full or inviter leaves lobby
  • improved reconnect handling

Replay Loading

  • added support for server mods in replays and saved games
  • added downloading server mods status

6. Fixes

Land Battleship credit to Stormsword

GPU

  • fixed windows laptops with AMD GPUs to always use discrete (Uber)
  • fixed negative output of dither in HDR compose pass… should fix crash on Intel 5xx GPUs (Uber)

Audio

  • fixed windows 10 audio issues with updated FMOD (Uber)

Uberbar

  • fixed display names not updating
  • fixed buy missing content dialog description when a classic player is invited to a titans game
  • fixed a long standing issue where a network / data issue or reloading the uberbar reset the user tag map and killed friends list
  • fixed the ubernet extender to not lose data or use bad data from playfab or local storage
  • fixed the ubernet extender to correctly check previous and not update on refresh
  • fixed long standing issue with large user tag and id to interaction time maps (based on optimise user tag map)
  • fixed a long standing issue where idToJabberPresenceTypeMap and idToJabberPresenceStatusMap were not written to session storage
  • fixed long standing issue where searches of existing friends add duplicates to friends list
  • fixed invites to private games
  • fixed long standing issue where previously accepted game invite fails then later invite from same person teleports you into new game without confirmation

New Game

  • fixed game password lost after refresh, selecting system, settings, etc
  • fixed cannot join empty slot issue where player disconnects without leaving
  • fixed the many issues caused by new game lobby loading without server mods ready and the freezes while server mods are uploading and remounting

Live Game

  • fixed alt-tab back to PA then backspace with chat window open triggering window back then reload or connecting to server

Live Game Players

  • fixed missing look at players for spectators

Game Over

  • fixed server freeze 30 seconds after game over while replay is being written which prevents chat, stats, review, etc

All Big Brother VODs available

In mid-may the Big Brother tournament was held, courtesy of River. This followed in the footsteps of the Clopsey Pro-Am where a high-skilled player of the platinum/uber rank was paired up with a player of lower skill. Over six rounds of Swiss the battles were fought and River captured six action packed matches.

These matches are now all available on the videos page, along with some POV videos from one of the teams that partook.

Legion Expansion v0.13.0 released

It’s time for another weekly update for Legion Expansion. As memorial weekend comes to a close we’re really close to seeing the Planetary Annihilation PTE pushed to the stable branch, allowing all players access to the Legion with no hoops to jump through.

As we’re getting close to this miraculous occasion we want to get your feedback on the beta. If you can take five minutes to complete this survey we’d greatly appreciate it.

It’s a light patch this time, but it contains some important balance changes. We’re focused on trying to improve unit diversity and get away from the Enforcer spam meta we’ve seen take hold. With the health drop we’re hopeful that Monstrosities will need to be added into the mix to act as a shield for the fragile Enforcer, as well as making T2 vehicles more relevant. While we also include a nerf to the Starcannon we’re considering additional measures to make anti-orbital defences more effective against it, so stay tuned.

General

  • Mixed MLA/Legion armies now use a custom icon on the player list

Balance

  • Starcannon nerf:
    • Pods can now be shot down by Bluehawks, Catapults, Stingrays and Panzers
  • Decimator buff:
    • Health increased from 1500 to 2500
  • Panzer nerf:
    • Missiles can now be shot down by GIL-Es

Fixes

  • Removed an invalid ammo type to prevent errors
  • Panzer no longer misses at close range
  • Legion tag no longer shown in UI in non-Legion games

INSTALLATION:

The Legion Expansion relies on the latest features of Planetary Annihilation TITANS which currently are only available via the PTE. Check out this eXodus eSports article which explains what a PTE is and how to get it.

The Legion Expansion is installed from the Community Mods section of Planetary Annihilation TITANS. Simply search for “Legion” and choose to install the Legion Expansion. All required elements will be installed. AI support is included within the mod, but for enhanced AI try installing the Queller AI as well.

HOW TO PLAY:

Check out our Legion Expansion article for all the information you need.

PTE 94638 released

  • Date: 27th May, 2016
  • Category: PTE
  • 0

Uber have put out another PTE. This might be the last one before it’s released to stable, fingers crossed and all that. We’ve summarised the changes for you, and while we reported last time that the fix for lobbies with an unjoinable slot had been fixed, it has definitely been fixed this time.

There are still no PTE servers, so for the Legion Expansion players among you your games still need to occur on local servers with the AI. Or a custom server running PTE if you fancy setting one up. Once PTE goes to stable Legion will be playable on Uber’s servers once again.

Feedback and bug reports should go in the official thread.

Summary

  1. Reworked replay_loading to support server mods in replays and saved games (first pass)
  2. Added metal spots count to planets in live game
  3. Fixed look at player for spectators, minor focus issues and added right click for PIP
  4. Added additional planet info to selected system in new game lobby
  5. Fixed fix for can’t join empty slot issue

Full changelog

Reworked replay_loading to support server mods in replays and saved games (first pass):

  • added pageSubTitle for detailed status
  • added gameModIdentifiers for server mods used in replay
  • added mods_info handler hook for community mods to load companion mods
  • added downloading_mod_data handler to show downloading server mods status
  • removed unused request_config and mod_msg_sv_ccl_set_replay_config handlers
  • added busy animation in connect_to_game
  • reworked sequence of events to support server mods in replays and saved games:
    • wait for replay to fully load with server mods info
    • process replay config
    • wait for client to connect and send first heartbeat from replay_loading
    • send mods info to client
    • wait for send_mods request from client (allows client to mount missing companion mods)
    • send mods to client with downloadModsFromServer
    • wait for mod_data received
    • send any cooked files to memory mount
    • wait for memory_files_received
    • generate armies
    • create sim from replay
    • move to playing state
  • added mods_info client message sent when replay is fully loaded and client sends heartbeat from replay_loading
  • added send_mods handler when client is ready to download server mods and any cooked files
  • added mod_data_received handler when server mods have been download and mounted on client

Added metal spots count to planets in live game

  • added display of metal spots count to tooltip in planets summary
  • reduced size of planets summary tooltip to minimise overlap with preview
  • added metal spots count to planet list with localised metal tooltip
  • reduced height of planets list for large systems with many planets
  • exposed PlanetModel for modding
  • exposed planetThrusterString for modding

Fixed look at player for spectators, minor focus issues and added right click for PIP:

  • fixed missing look at player for spectators
  • added right click show in PIP using lookAtPlayerIfKnownInPIP
  • changed track commander to use new track_commander handler in live game
  • added right click to track commander in PIP
  • added track_commander handler and trackCommander with optional holodeck to live game
  • added primary holodeck focus when handling planet clicks in live game
  • added primary holodeck focus when selecting sun in live game
  • added primary holodeck focus on commander spawn in live game
  • added updating of existing game options so observables can be used by mods in live game
  • tweaked showAlertPreview to support multiple PIPs

Added additional planet info to selected system in new game lobby:

  • fixed and deleted old lobbyId observable in new_game
  • added planet radius, metal / custom metal, custom landing and custom csg in a tooltip
  • added planetTooltip for modding
  • added halleys required icon
  • exposed process system for modding
  • exposed processSystemPlayersText for modding
  • exposed processSystemPlayersCSS for modding
  • fixed editable econ rate for players
  • added highlight to econ rate when not 1.0

Fixed fix for can’t join empty slot issue

Custom Server Setup guide updated

Uber has always provided servers for hosting your games. But if you wanted to break the 10 player limit, or put a little more juice into late game performance, then hosting your own custom server was the only way to go. And right now if you want to host a Legion Expansion game then you have to have a custom server running the PTE version of the game.

server_setup

mikeyh has kindly updated the Custom Server Setup guide to make it both easier to use (no more VIM!) and relevant to the latest versions of Planetary Annihilation.

So if you want big games, or Legion games, check out the guide to see what you need to do.

Legion Expansion v0.12.0 released

Work continues on the Planetary Annihilation: TITANS Legion Expansion with bugs being eliminated, new features being added and the balance continuing to be tweaked. The big change in this release is that players will no longer need to have the Legion Expansion installed to be able to play in a Legion Expansion game. While the recommendation is still that you install it ahead of time, the days of unaware players joining and then crashing are over.

Unfortunately the Legion Expansion is not playable in multiplayer at the moment. This is due to its reliance on features introduced in the PTE, and the absence of any PTE servers at this time. Once build 94533 or later is released to stable you will be able to play Legion online again. Until then AI skirmish remains available for use with the local server option in settings enabled.

Legion Expansion v0.12.0

General

  • Improved MLA selection graphics in lobby
  • In-game menu is now red when Legion UI is enabled
  • Removed blue shadows from UI elements when Legion UI is enabled
  • Novas prioritise air
  • Optimised Nova effects for performance
  • Standardised colouring of commanders on game launch splash
  • Standardised colouring of Commanders in lobby
  • Infiltrator’s probe scan effect plays more than once after deployment to more clearly show its function
  • Wraith renamed to Spectre
  • Excalibur renamed to Paladin
  • Added idle effects to the Havoc
  • Improved PA startup time when Legion is disabled through use of new companion mod feature
  • Improved Investigator description
  • Improved game logging

Balance

  • Diplomat buffed
    • Cost reduced from 50,000 metal to 40,000 to match Halley

Fixes

  • Fixed build icon weapon symbols for Catfish, Bowhead and Talos
  • Fixed numerous textures being too bright
  • Adding unit card pictures for Booms spawned by Necromancers
  • Log no longer shows errors for invalid impact decal
  • Fixed placement size of basic and advanced Vehicle Foundry and the advanced Walker Foundry
  • Build bar buttons turn red when clicked not blue
  • Sub-orders from the orders bar are now also red
  • Fixed boundary and selection box of the Holocene
  • Legion lobby no longer obscures Lobby System Preview mod’s planet display
  • Slot colour now correct shade of grey after removing an AI player
  • Legion Commanders highlighted red in commander selection even if the Legion theme is disabled
  • Fixed ready button moving after being clicked
  • Starcannon pods correctly display their trail
  • Description of Kosmos now correctly states that it attacks land
  • Starcannon description no longer claims it’s a teleporter
  • Booms spawned by the Necromancer now have alt-fire
  • Purger can attack surface naval ships close to the shore
  • Fixed strategic icon warnings in log
  • Intro buttons properly sized for latest PA versions