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CO Word of the Week #9

Welcome back to the weekly update on what’s happening at Colossal Order and what to expect for Cities: Skylines II. Last week we had in-depth conversations with our publisher Paradox Interactive on the priorities and goals for Cities: Skylines II for 2024. There’s really nothing new when it comes to the previous statements: Modding support, console versions, and the Expansion Pass content are to be worked on and released during the year. From the great discussions emerged an important decision however: the modding support will roll out gradually as the features enter beta and we won’t wait for all of them to be fully completed before setting them live.

What this means in practice is that we’ll start giving the mod creators early access to the modding tools as soon as the code modding and Paradox Mods are ready for testing. If everything goes as planned a Public Beta version of the code modding and Paradox Mods will be available a couple of weeks after that. We’ll continue to work on the Map and Asset editing as they require a bit more attention still. Map editing is expected to be available sooner than the Asset editing, but at this time it comes down to iteration time and the feedback we’re getting on the usability of the tool. Asset editing is unfortunately suffering from technical issues and as long as players are unable to save and share the assets there’s no point publicly releasing the tools. We do have a plan for the fixes, but it might take months in the worst case I’m afraid.

To summarize on the priorities of the modding support:
  1. Public Beta version of code modding and Paradox Mods will be available in the live build by the end of March
  2. Public Beta version of Map editing available in the live build together with code modding or soon after
  3. Public Beta version of Asset editing to be announced, only after the technical issues are sorted can we roll out the tool
  4. Continue to work on the modding support and get out of the Beta stage during the Finnish fall.
We’ll keep resources on the modding support throughout the entire lifecycle of Cities: Skylines II as we know there are many improvements and feature requests we can work on to help the modders achieve their goals even after the initial Beta release.

The work on the console versions is ongoing and while gated by the modding support we’re making progress. We’re not committing to any timelines as there are too many unknowns at this time, but we’ll keep you updated and will communicate the moment we have something to share. For the Expansion Pass, the artists have the Beach Properties content almost ready and we’re on track for its release.

Before those bigger releases, we’ll have one more patch coming out. After this, we’ll include the bug fixes and performance improvements in the releases to reduce the amount of individual patches. Patch 1.0.19 is going through its first round in QA at the moment and will be released after it passes the checks. Full patch notes will be released on the day the patch goes live, but you can expect fixes for stuck maintenance vehicles and an additional fix for abandoned dogs, who will now be returned to their homes. While the work still continues on the land value, we have an improvement so pollution properly affects the value. And last, but definitely not least, we’re currently testing a fix for the tax bug with crazy high or negative numbers.

Keep following our social channels for news about the patch release and hope you enjoy the game in the meantime. Have a lovely week!

Sincerely,
Mariina
 
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So the asset mods, including the Creator Packs, aren't going to be available until sometime between March and  Fall? That's astonishing, to be honest, it's gone from "days after release" to almost a year!
 
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Cool, may I ask you to fix the data visualization_ I mean graphs and stuff that are not visualized properly (e.g. the lines are starting in the middle of the plot), also the numbers don't seem to be correct at times. Please, it is important in order to know what are the trends in the city, crutial part for planning.
 
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Thanks for this update and the transparency! :) Looking forward for the first DLCs. The game worked fine on my virtual Shadow PC and I'm already in love with the game.

Greetings to the whole dev-team and thanks for their effort! :) I hope that the bad vibes are getting more less, as the game is improving from week to week! :)
 
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Thanks for the update Two questions:

- Will these public beta versions also available for Microsoft Store customers?

- Seeing the issues with the asset editor, does that mean that those creators packs teased last year with "coming soon" the 28th of October are also delayed massively? This is a bummer since building asset variety is abysmal in the vanilla base game. The pack promised 2500 new free assets 'coming soon'. Or is this another of the deceptive marketing stunts? Official Link

Looking forward to the patch with fixes.
 
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From the great discussions emerged an important decision however: the modding support will roll out gradually as the features enter beta and we won’t wait for all of them to be fully completed before setting them live.

What this means in practice is that we’ll start giving the mod creators early access to the modding tools as soon as the code modding and Paradox Mods are ready for testing. If everything goes as planned a Public Beta version of the code modding and Paradox Mods will be available a couple of weeks after that.
I think this is great news.
It's a shame the complete modding experience won't be available at the same time, but this will take the pressure off and give vital feedback on the modding platform, plus the code modding will release much needed new life into the game imho
We’ll keep resources on the modding support throughout the entire lifecycle of Cities: Skylines II as we know there are many improvements and feature requests we can work on to help the modders achieve their goals even after the initial Beta release.
I kind of expected this but it's never wrong to confirm this.
Before those bigger releases, we’ll have one more patch coming out. After this, we’ll include the bug fixes and performance improvements in the releases to reduce the amount of individual patches.
I'm hoping this wording doesn't preclude performance enhancements in the coming patch.
and an additional fix for abandoned dogs, who will now be returned to their homes.
Would be cool if this is in the form of dog catcher vans rounding them up and delivering them home :D
 
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So the asset mods, including the Creator Packs, aren't going to be available until sometime between March and  Fall? That's astonishing, to be honest.
We're working to fix the technical issues with the asset import, but it may take us months to resolve, which means anything that relies on the asset import will wait for it. Of course, we hope to resolve the issues sooner, but we want to be honest with you and not set too high expectations. Unfortunately, these issues are not easy to solve, but we'll get there as soon as we can.

Cool, may I ask you to fix the data visualization_ I mean graphs and stuff that are not visualized properly (e.g. the lines are starting in the middle of the plot), also the numbers don't seem to be correct at times. Please, it is important in order to know what are the trends in the city, crutial part for planning.
We're working on a bunch of fixes for statistics, but we'll have to see if they make this upcoming patch.

Thanks for the update Two questions:

- Will these public beta versions also available for Microsoft Store customers?

- Seeing the issues with the asset editor, does that mean that those creators packs teased last year with "coming soon" are also delayed massively? This is a bummer since building asset variety is abysmal in the vanilla base game.

Looking forward to the patch with fixes.
The Editor will become available in the live build as a Beta, so you'll have a button to access it. There will just be some things that are not finished and may not work, but you'll be able to experiment with what's there and provide feedback on it.
 
Cheers for the update guys. As someone who has already put out a few maps (please someone stop me, I'm supposed to be working!) I'm a little reticent to make too many more. Im worried I'll have to come back and remake the maps once the editor is officially out... - do you think this is likely to happen? Or will maps already made work fine later when the editor is out?

Also, since its you guys who are making the map editor - perhaps you could give us some advice on how to best use the water tools? I've been learning thru trial and error, I keep thinking I have it figured out, but then my current map is telling me I know nothing. :D

Cheers M'dears.

AncientSwan
 
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What about performance improvements? I have a city at 700k population that is unplayable and I am running it on a high end system. I’ve tried to submit a report but the saved game file is too large to upload on your website.
 
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Have to say, even though I've been fan of the series and the team (since CiM 1) and I was willing to be patient, looking at this timeline, you guys really messed up big time this time. How can you so massively delay one of the biggest parts that kept your game alive? This game really shouldn't have been released when it did.

Starts to give me Cities In Motion 2 wibes, where modding tools were promised, but never came.
 
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Thank you for the update.
In my city I have a harbor and a cargo train station, which are full and together holds 62,000t of resources and goods. Not a single kilo is ever exported, and every train and boat leaving is empty. This leads to massive amounts of lost revenue, and city wide heavy vehicle traffic jams as trucks constantly try to place and retrieve stuff.

Please assure me that this broken core game feature is being fixed before adding mod tools or a console version.
 
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Out of curiosity, why announce the Creator Packs so early if you were aware of how unpredictable the release date is? Why give us hope of new content only to potentially sideswipe it away from us yet again?

EDIT: On a plus side, we can disagree a lot on the game, but now thank you for giving us at least a rough timetable of what is to be expected, and being honest with it. That is the very least we can expect, and thank you for not blaming the community as well for the problems u created. I think it’s the first dev diary in weeks that I’m not infuriated.
 
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We're working to fix the technical issues with the asset import, but it may take us months to resolve, which means anything that relies on the asset import will wait for it. Of course, we hope to resolve the issues sooner, but we want to be honest with you and not set too high expectations. Unfortunately, these issues are not easy to solve, but we'll get there as soon as we can.
Out of curiosity, what are the major technical issues that are facing asset import? I recall previously the problem had been described as automation of LODs, is that still the problem? What about it is so complex that it's going to take months? Or is this more releated to Unity itself? How were you able to import assets into the game if the first place if it's so broken?
 
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We're working to fix the technical issues with the asset import, but it may take us months to resolve, which means anything that relies on the asset import will wait for it. Of course, we hope to resolve the issues sooner, but we want to be honest with you and not set too high expectations. Unfortunately, these issues are not easy to solve, but we'll get there as soon as we can.

You might want to pull the official marketing trailer of 28th of October announcing this as "coming soon" if it will take months again. Link

Otherwise it is another "deceptive marketing campaign" issue.

I also think it is insane how you first don't work on the things you have promised officially as 'coming soon' before starting work on console version or paid DLC.

For me this is the point I will not support CO financially anymore. Why should I reward continued behaviour and broken promises like this with money. And I hope other people will do the same. It is the only way to actually make a difference and don’t reward opportunism like this.
 
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As much as I do enjoy the game, it's really wild how things that were promised to us months after launch, will now take a full year to implement. What happened with the development or vision of the game? I really do not understand.
 
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Before those bigger releases, we’ll have one more patch coming out. After this, we’ll include the bug fixes and performance improvements in the releases to reduce the amount of individual patches. Patch 1.0.19 is going through its first round in QA at the moment and will be released after it passes the checks.
I didn't quite understand, will there be another patch besides 1.0.19 before bugfix patches are only released alongside major feature patches? After this next patch, will the next one only be at the end of March with the arrival of the beta version of modding?
 
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