Surviving the Aftermath Dev Diary 1 - The Colony

Surviving the Aftermath Dev Diary 1 - The Colony

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DavyDavy

Community Developer
Sep 25, 2019
67
49
Hello all, and welcome to the very first Developer Diary of Surviving the Aftermath! The whole team has been very busy after the launch at PDXCON, so without further ado, let’s dig into what this update has to offer!


“Update 1 - The Colony” is all about your village in the middle of the apocalypse. In this update, we wanted to concentrate on making the colony-building part deeper with new buildings, gameplay enhancements, balance improvements, and a few nasty - but hopefully interesting - surprises to challenge your colony-building skills. We are happy to say that some of the features are already implemented based on requests from the community after the launch.


First up is the Upgraded Gate. The gate is, in many ways, a central building to your colony, and we have lots of plans in mind to expand its role even further. This update adds an option to upgrade the gate to the next level. The upgraded Gate not only looks more menacing, but it also reveals more information about the incoming survivors, like their conditions.


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Maintenance Depot was created to help you with large-scale repairs. After being built, it automatically repairs all damaged buildings inside its work area as long as there are enough resources in storage.


One of the game’s biggest issues has been the finite nature of resources. The current state was never our intention for the long term as it’s frustrating to run out of basic resources, which stops the game completely. However, it takes time to implement all the individual bits and pieces. Incoming future updates will add more features to make resource management deeper and interesting.


Our answer for this is the Extractors - for all your late-game Metal, Plastic, and Concrete needs. Your feedback clearly showed that this is a priority for our very first big update. New extractor buildings will (slowly) produce infinite amounts of basic resources from underground deposits. Additional functionalities will follow, but for now they must be built on barren soil.


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Other new features include the ability to choose what to allow for each storage. Stockpiles can be set to accept only Metal, for example - handy if you’re creating a production chain further away from the colony. You can build an entire industrial area around Extractors and their storages, or dedicate Food Storages just for baking purposes near your fields of Wheat to optimize production chains and minimize travel time.


Energy production is also receiving an update to make them feel more distinct from each other. Solar Panels are cheap and produce more energy in the dry scenario, but will shut down during the night, so Battery Racks are more important than ever (and there’s a new and bigger one now available). You can also rename your colonists and specialists according to your friends, family, Twitch chat, or mortal enemies you want to see catch a meteor in the head.


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We did a lot of work to make Work Areas more informative and interesting to play with. Wells have to be spaced out now, and Fertile soil produces more Water per tile than normal soil. Also, placing Trapper’s work area near dense forests allows it to produce Venison faster. Fishing Huts are at their most effective with plenty of water around them.


In the balancing front, we’ve added more Metal, Fiber, Antibiotics, Iodine Pills, and Tools on the World Map. You should now be less hindered by the lack of these resources, even though they’ll still run out in the long run. Don’t worry, we’ll come back to this. :)



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And finally some bad news for your colonists: Nuclear Waste deposits now puff out a radioactive cloud on occasion, damaging nearby colonists and buildings alike. Environmental Station still cleans the waste and compresses it, but the resulting Pollution barrels must now be stored in the new Nuclear Waste Storage.


And to cap this all off, meteors and whatnot will cause splash damage around the impact point making building placement a bit more interesting, so enjoy! This is the first version of the new damage model, so please send feedback on whether you feel we got it right or wrong.


On the visual side, we started working on the next version of the world map. So when you open the world map for the next time, it’ll look a bit different and hopefully better. We changed the terrain materials, so it looks more like the map of a post-apocalyptic world, which felt like the right choice. In the next update, we’ll have more things coming, so this is just the beginning.


We are just getting started with Surviving the Aftermath, and we still have tons of stuff we want to add and balancing to do. We can’t wait to see how the game will develop in the next few months through your comments and feedback. As always, please tell us what you think via the in-game tool - both positive and negative feedback helps us in understanding what you like and what you don’t appreciate as much.
 
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soulburn

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That screenshot of survivors at the gate:

"Our food ran out a month ago, we thought we were goners. But then a group appeared, filled or bags with meat and carried on without saying a word."

Maybe I'm just being morbid and/or paranoid...

,,,but, I'm getting some real cannibal vibes here.
 

Illyrien

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Any chance the player could set up trade caravans for these resources, or attract them from elsewhere?

Really looking forward for this game :D
 

lasse_ifs

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Iceflake Studio Developer
Aug 5, 2019
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Any chance the player could set up trade caravans for these resources, or attract them from elsewhere?

Really looking forward for this game :D

We already have a trade center in the game and the functionality it currently has is not meant to be final by any means ;)
 

Longherin

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"running out of resources at a stationary location" is basically why I don't like the idea of settling down for 'after the end' scenarios without copious tech and the knowledge behind running those tech.
Perhaps more can be gathered from off map?

Either way, I like my city builders despite my apprehensions, so I'm looking forward to more about this.
 

General Karthos

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Sounds like you're listening to the players and testers, which is nice. I haven't fired up the game in a while. Might have to do so again having so many of my concerns addressed.
 

Honeywell

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"or dedicate Food Storages just for baking purposes near your fields of Wheat to optimize production chains and minimize travel time."

The food storage huts weren't included in the storage update--would love it if they were though!
 

kalauer

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That screenshot of survivors at the gate:

"Our food ran out a month ago, we thought we were goners. But then a group appeared, filled or bags with meat and carried on without saying a word."

Maybe I'm just being morbid and/or paranoid...

,,,but, I'm getting some real cannibal vibes here.
Plus they do have supplies with them. So... it's a trap! *insert you know-what-image here*
 

J66185

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Jun 26, 2018
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I sometimes wonder why honey isn't mentioned much in post-apoc games, I mean, honey is the perfect food for long-term storage, so why does it not appear much on the radar these days?
 

ozgreg

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I sometimes wonder why honey isn't mentioned much in post-apoc games, I mean, honey is the perfect food for long-term storage, so why does it not appear much on the radar these days?

Hopefully CCD did not wipe them out as currently the world is still experiencing double the rate of bee deaths.. As a side note, number of studies are under way to study fly pollination behaviour, not something a lot of people want to consider when it comes to the pesty flies but it turns out that they also have a role to play so maybe in the future bee's die and flies take over.. Shudder.. :)
 

Magraev

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This sounds very interesting. Banished meets Fallout, and sweet music ensues :)
 

Rymeer

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Apr 24, 2018
65
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We already have a trade center in the game and the functionality it currently has is not meant to be final by any means ;)

To date, the Trade Center is about useless. It merely doubles the amounts of things traded for by visitors to your Gate. Perhaps an update to the TC that allows one to trade with other Colonies? The Event pop-up would look pretty much the same, but would represent a visitor from another Colony with substantial goods or knowledge to trade.

So far, I am liking the 'advanced' mining facilities. Even though some Colony Maps force me to place my Mines far away from the main Colony Site, I simply build a storage facility and food storage near each, connect with roads, add housing, and they are 'golden'.

There really should be a way to make your own components, and from the resource bar at the top of the screen, I see something like a computer chip... so perhaps the Colony will eventually be able to make those and really advanced tech... perhaps radio towers to connect Colonies, better manufacturing for better tools, perhaps weapons and armor for your specialists, and with enough Wind Turbines... perhaps battery powered farming tools?

Other advancements might include larger Insect farming buildings, larger and more efficient Hydroponics Gardens, Fountains for happiness? Colony Pools for health, happiness, and as an emergency source of water?

Have you considered Events off both maps? Perhaps Specialists can defeat enough bandits to find what is needed for an Expedition off both maps? One that has chances to go very good, good, normally, bad, and very badly for any specialists sent? Netting Resources, Knowledge, 'high tech' parts like the computer chips, etc. For instance, once enough Bandits have been defeated, the Specialists have gathered enough 'intelligence' to find a major City site which could yield a lot of resources, research, or even new Tech for your Colony.

Perhaps one of the 'goals' of the game could be to build up a large enough population to 'split' and spawn a new Colony, off the maps? Another might to advance tech sufficiently to build truly nasty weapons and transportation to allow you to go out and 'save' other Colonies, making them allies? I would Love to see Specialists running around their map in armored vehicles, wielding rifles and wearing armor.

Oh, On the Specialist Map, exhausted resource sites clutter the screen and can't be used by specialists as 'go to' locations... which is why I NEVER 'loot' the Venison site next to my Colony site. A way to extend play, might be to have each resource site, once exhausted, have a timer of however many days, before it vanishes and is replaced by a Bandit Camp or some other Resource? Ditto for sites on the Colony Map as well. Although it might not be a good idea to have Radiation patches reappear once cleaned up. Another such thought would be for the game to keep track of how many times such a site, Bandit Camp, Resource Site, etc.. has re-spawned. Making the replacement more likely to be a Bandit Camp, for example.

Just a few thoughts.
 

Lunchbox3318

Recruit
Dec 3, 2019
1
0
Sandbox mode would be nice, so we can play around with certain aspects of the game. Also, re-spawning bandit camps after X amount of days with progressively harder and harder opponents would be nice. Also, a "return to camp" feature on our scavengers would be awesome (once clicked they automatically return).