Hey, excited to try the beta. I hope you will keep releasing here on itch even after the game is available on Steam, personally I don't use Steam due to the DRM.
v 1.1 Beta - Hero's Hour Distant Lands update
So! Welcome back. It's been a couple of weeks since the Hero's Hour v1 release! That was an exciting time, but it also had been a long while mostly focusing on polish, stability and minor changes. So it became important for me to show that that isn't the normal way of things. Hero's Hour is meant to be a living, breathing game. And thus right after game launch, I steered right into a period of heavy development. Which I am now ready to reveal as:
Distant Lands update
This update focuses on adding a lot more variety to the Hero's Hour overworld maps.
A large part of that is in adding Islands, sea-faring, portals, etc. But there are also new map objects coming. In total, the feature list looks as follows:
- Sailing + Pirates
- More varied maps
- New map objects (12 in beta)
- New units (coming soon)
- New faction mechanics
- Naval and Cave combat types
What ended up being the largest feature was seafaring. I mean, sailing was simple enough. But then you needed docks, and all the mapgen related changes to allow placing objects specifically on the coastline. Then you need something to do out at sea. Then you need some way to do battle on the sea. It kind of spiraled out of control.
But that's also pretty cool, because I'm quite proud of a lot of the content that has come out of it.
What actually was the most challenging part was pathfinding. It was super important for me that you could click anywhere on the map, and the pathfinder would automatically understand the ability to buy a boat, get into it, sail across the sea, and land on the distant shore - for instance. Or that you could go through a portal to get there faster. This was moderately difficult - I'm really proud of my coastline solution, for instance.
What was much worse was how slow pathfinding became. Maps can be up to 4x larger, more of the map is traversible due to the open seas, and each tile has to check for portals etc. So a lot of time ended up being devoted to doing the optimisations so that the new more complex pathfinding doesn't slow the game to a halt.
Anyway, though the list above seems quite expansive, there's actually even more content than really described. Take a look.
- Three new Adventure Map Buildings - Crystallarium, Far Post and Keep.
- Significant optimisations for the overworld map
- Decrepit Mines and Cave type battlefields
- Potential Mines
- Overgrown Mines
- Wild faction heroes can now overgrow mines
- Elemental Gate mechanic rework
- Pyre faction heroes can portal between their captured mines in regions where they have a Pyre faction town
- Docks and boats
- Map objects for the seas
- Pirates (Work in Progress)
- New Island map types
- 9 new maps
- Map selection screen overhaul
- Maps can now have flexible sizes
- Map generation terrain has more open areas
- Crystalarium, Far Post, Keep and Docks adventure map buildings added
So let's talk about the beta. Just today, I uploaded the first v 1.1 beta. You can now play all the features listed just above this picture. But there's still more to come. All these six units (plus many more) won't come before v 1.1 is finally completed. There will also be more adventure map buildings. So, in a way, v 1.1 is only half done.
Nevertheless, with the amount of improvements made recently, it felt weird to continue keeping people out. I sort of also need some feedback on game balance with such sweeping changes. Finally, there's sure to be some rare bugs that wandered through my net, and I'd love if you could help me catch them.
Anyway. More patch notes! <3
- Obelisk buried treasure is slightly further away
- Most adventure map buildings have had their graphical interface improved
- Adventure map buildings that create units for your army (Crucible, Temple of Nature, Temple of Order, Hunter’s Outpost) now scale the quality and number of units to which week you are in
- Adventure map building “Fort” now gives experience instead of gold
- Crystallius unit is now stronger and more expensive
- Roaming armies will now stick to the same terrain they started in
- Steps of War and No Man’s Land have been renamed and remade into Isles of War and No Man’s Island
- The difficulty tooltip now correctly evaluates the challenge of Guard Posts
- Autobattle or “Skip to Results” against Guard Posts now incur more losses on the attacker to better match actual combat
- AI is now better at recruiting heroes
- AI threat detection is now even better
- First Aid tent effectiveness has been reduced - units have a lower chance of being resurrected. Base rate has been reduced from 50%-power*5% to 30%-power*4%. Bonus from Engineering decreased slightly.
- First Aid tent and ballista stop working when less than 5% of the original army is left, instead of only when no more units remain.
- Random roads spawn around the maps
- “Bellow” ability for heroes with Arduour has had its damage and base knockback doubled
- Quake has had its damage doubled
- Pathfinding has been updated to do less “tip-toe” around enemy combat
- Odin’s Son now summons TWO Rock Elementals on death instead of one
- Miniarmy now follows your hero a bit more accurately
- Artifacts now reduce the hydra summon timer slightly less. When sacrificing artifacts to summon the hydra, you no longer need to wait until the next day for the ritual to complete
- Fixed a bug that would make the armorer perk either apply to all or none of the units in a stack
- Fixed an exploit that allowed you to get the Taming or Hunting bonuses for doing autobattle against units after having just Tamed/Hunted one unit
- Fixed a bug that made Odin’s Son summon Rock Elementals for the enemy instead of its own side
I'm sure I've already announced that Hero's Hour is coming to steam, but I'd like to add a few words. The plan is to continue development here on itch for a couple of more updates. Then around v 1.3 or something like that, doing another period of polish and stability fixing, before releasing the game there. But you can still go and wishlist the game on steam today.
I think I'll leave it at this for now. Expect a non-beta release for v 1.1 in a week or thereabouts. Until then, I'm all ears for feedback and others. Write it here on itch, contact me on the discord, on twitter, or even on email at email@example.com.
See you soon!
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When will the current beta be ready for full release?
My plan was Sunday, then Monday, then Tuesday. I still hope today will be the day.
I ended up getting a bunch of bug reports during a couple of days where it was really difficult for me to get work done - but it looks like most of that's taken care of now