bastecklein's Recent Posts

More New Region Features for My Colony v1.0.0

2019-12-08 18:35:16
Here is a video overview of some new Region stuff coming to v1.0.0.


The video demonstrates both automatic and template river/water generation, improved switching between regional maps, and the new ability to move bots from one region city to another. Enjoy, and stay tuned for more v1.0.0 new stuff!

RE:The Return of Bast, and v1.0.0 Begins!

2019-12-06 20:38:11
And this one is just from an image I found online.

RE:The Return of Bast, and v1.0.0 Begins!

2019-12-06 20:21:07
I've made more progress on it today. Here is an auto-generated Earthlike region.


You never really know what you're going to get.

The game now automatically builds preview images for tiles which do not have a city on them. This is a somewhat expensive process though, and so the tile preview generation is staggered out, which makes rendering an entire map take a couple of minutes. The game is still playable though, while the tiles are being generated.

Here is another template I made:


Which turns into this:


A fine looking place to call home, if you ask me!

The Return of Bast, and v1.0.0 Begins!

2019-12-05 22:49:02
Greetings all! I have been busy the last few weeks with family, Thanksgiving, and getting my catalog of old apps updated for the Holiday season, but now I have returned to "active duty" and have begun work on the long awaited My Colony v1.0.0 update!

This update is going to be significant, and I expect a lot of potential bugs and craziness on the Web client, so please be aware of that.

I will be posting updates in the forum as I add new things so you all know what is coming, but the first new feature I started working on today is Regional level terrain generation, with support for templates.

I will explain, and please note that the feature is not done yet and some things remain broken, particularly with the automatic terrain generation.

Starting in v1.0, when you create a new Region, if it is of the type that has a River tile, you will be asked if you want to use automatic terrain generation, or import a template. If you choose Automatic, the game will generate rivers as normal, but on a regional scale, so that the rivers in one city actually line up to the next. This is still broken at the moment, so be patient.

The (in my opinion) cooler part, is the template option, and this is mostly working right now, although there is still some glitches to be found. That said, you can now import a 250x250px black and white image to use as a template for your regional water system. Here is a test template I created:


When you load this template into the game, it treats the white areas as land, and the black as water (or lava/ether/etc). So when you start filling out your regional cities, you get something like this:


It's not working perfectly yet, but you get the idea. I still need to get it so that you can see the rivers BEFORE you actually start one of the sub cities, but that is a work in progress.

So yeah, the first item on the agenda is the new Regional waterway system and templating. Once I am done with that, I will let you all know here in the forum what the next item on the agenda is!

And just be aware, the development cycle on v1.0.0 is going to be a lot slower than normal because I plan on packing this one with goodies, so stay tuned for more!

RE:My Starship - New Concept Game - Page 7

2019-11-18 19:23:34
v0.12.0 of My Starship is now available. Update adds a quick Refuel option to planets, fixes a host of bugs, and allows for diagonal starship travel.

RE:My Colony Podcast - Trial Run

2019-11-17 19:05:21
Podcast to begin in about 20 minutes

RE:Ape Chat Users Manual

2019-11-17 19:03:03
Thanks, @Ansom good catch.

My Colony Podcast - Trial Run

2019-11-17 15:32:00
Just a heads up, in roughly 5-6 hours time, I will be recording a live edition of the My Colony Podcast on the following Ape Chat channel:

#my-colony-podcast


I will announce it here and in the chat 20-30 minutes prior. This will be live recording and will be broadcast later on the podcast networks and youtube. Anybody is welcome to join the chat, either text or voice. This is a trial run to see if I can get everything working prior to the v1.0.0 launch party episode, so the more stress I can put on the system, the better!

Discussion will be anything My Colony related, or really anything at all. Enjoy!

Ape Chat Users Manual

2019-11-16 16:47:11

This page is the one-stop guide to everything you need to know about Ape Chat. Ape Chat is a free standalone chat service from Ape Apps. It is available in your web browser, it is embedded into many Ape Apps games (such as My Colony), it is included in the Ape Apps Launcher, and is even embedded into the footer of this website. All of these applications and services are linked to the same Ape Chat server behind the scenes. The service allows for virtually unlimited free public chat rooms, private group chats, and even group voice chat. With this guide, you will learn all of the tricks and capabilities of the service. This guide will be updated as changes and improvements to the service are implemented.

Account Authentication
Ape Chat is tied to your Ape Apps Account, and if you do not have one, you will need to get one in order to log into the service. Your Ape Apps Account is the same account used for this website and for games such as My Colony. If you do not have one, you can sign up for free at https://accounts.ape-apps.com.

Channels
Ape Chat is organized by Channels. A channel is essentially it's own separate chat room. There are a few default channels already created, and you can also easily create your own. Channels fall into three categories - Public, Private, and Voice.

Global Channels
A Global chat channel is a basic channel that anybody can join. Examples include the general Ape Apps Chat, or the My Colony global chat. Anybody can create a global channel, and they are moderated by the developer ( @bastecklein ) and global moderator ( @cry8wolf9 ). With only a few exceptions (allowed by the developer only), Global channels are text only.

Private Channels
A Private channel can only be joined by invitation. Anybody may create a private channel, and when a user creates a new private channel, they are automatically assigned as a moderator for that channel. Private channel moderators may then invite other users to join the channel. Keep in mind that the developer and global moderators also have access to all private channels.

Voice Channels
A Voice channel retains all of the capabilities of a regular text channel, but also supports peer-to-peer voice communications. The voice chat runs in a decentralized mesh network, where each peer connects to each other without having to go through the server. This reduces server load, but it can also restrict the size of the voice chat, particularly on slow clients. For this reason, users are only allowed to enable voice chat on private channels that they are the moderator of.

Creating or Joining a Channel
Both creating and joining a chat channel are done in the same way, using the /join command. For instance, if you wanted to join the cows channel, you would type the following into the chat box:
/join cows
If the channel already exists, you will join the existing channel. Otherwise, the new cows channel will be automatically created. Channel names do not support spaces.

Creating a new private channel is similar. Suppose you wanted to create the new cows channel as private channel. The command would look like this:
/join %cows
The % symbol tells the server to create the channel in private mode. So the actual channel name would still just be cows, as the % sign only tells the server how to create the channel, and it is then discarded. If the channel already exists, nothing special will happen. If it doesn't, the new private channel cows will be created, and you will be the moderator.

If you want to leave a channel and remove it from your channel listing, you can do so with the /leave command.
/leave cows

Sharing a Channel
It is easy to share a link to your channel with others. Suppose, as in the example above, we created the cows channel. You can send anybody a direct link to your chat channel using the following URL scheme:
https://chat.ape-apps.com/?channel=cows

Simply change the word cows to whatever the name of your channel is. Even easier, you can create an automatic launcher for your chatroom here on the Ape Apps forum using the chat BBCode tag. So entering this...
[chat]cows[/chat]
...would create a chat application launcher button like this:

#cows


Private Channel Administration
Continuing the example above with our new theoretical cows private channel. Suppose you are the moderator of cows. Here are some options you can do to administer your new private channel.

Inviting Users
The command to invite a user to your private channel is /invite username to channelname. For example, to invite user nezkeys to the cows channel, you would enter the following:
/invite nezkeys to cows
In the above example, the cows channel will be then be added to nezkey's channel listing. If he is currently online, he will also get a notice that he has been added to the channel.

Channel Name
You can give your channel a display name, which can contain uppercase letters and spaces, using the /setname command. A display name makes it easier to identify a channel in a user's channel listing, and just looks nicer than the plain channel hashtag name. Suppose we wanted to call our cows channel Cow Chat. We would do this:
/setname cows Cow Chat
Technically the channel name is still cows, and to join, users would still need to type /join cows, but in the channel listing, it will now be refereed to as Cow Chat. You can use this function to give users a clearer understanding of what the channel is all about.

Enabling Voicechat
Converting your private channel into a voice-enabled channel can be easily done using the /envoice command. Below, we turn our Cow Chat channel into a fully featured voice-enabled room.
/envoice cows

Client Management
You can print an in-chat listing of commands that are available to you using the /help command.
/help
You can also use /? which does the same thing.

Ape Chat supports both a light and a dark theme mode, and you can use the /theme command to pick between the two.
/theme dark
/theme light
You can also set the default color of your messages using the /color command. The color command accepts hex color code values. For example, red is defined as #ff0000. For example:
/color #ff0000
The above example will make your text red. You can also clear out your color customization and return to the client theme default using /color null. In addition, you can set your message text color on a per-message basis using standard BBCode markup.

User Management
At times you may wish to send a private message to a particular user. You can accomplish this using the @ command. For example, suppose you want to send a private message to nezkeys. You would do so like this:
@nezkeys How are you?
Note that the message will only be delivered if the target user is currently online. If they are not, you are better off sending them a private message through the forum.

Ignoring and Muting
You have the ability to either ignore or mute a user. When you ignore somebody, their messages will be completely hidden from you, including their voice stream. When you mute them, only their voice stream will be disabled, so you will still be able to read their text messages. These actions are taken with the /ignore and /mute commands.
/ignore nezkeys
/mute nezkeys
Similarly, you can undo the above actions with the /unignore and /unmute commands.
/unignore nezkeys
/unmute nezkeys
Lastly, you can completely clear out your ignore and mute lists using the all parameter.
/unignore all
/unmute all

Group Voice Chat Comes to Ape Chat

2019-11-15 21:32:24
I still have a bit of polish to add, but group voice chat channels are now available on Ape Chat (the web version)!

See the following for a very short demo:


I think I will probably be using this for the upcoming My Colony Podcast instead of Discord, even though I appreciate the NOZ Discord offer, I do always like using my own stuff when I can 🙂

If you want to test it for yourself, head to https://chat.ape-apps.com on your desktop computer and where it says "add channel" on the side, add the Qwerty channel (with a capital Q). This is a designated voice channel. I have also added the channel globalvoice (all lowercase).

I still have some improvements to make, so you might have to do some hard-reloads on your browser to get the latest code, but stay tuned, because Ape Chat is only going to get better and better!

RE:My Colony v0.99.0 Released

2019-11-14 20:14:56
@Amorphus I did plan on doing this, but I wasn't planning on having it in 1.0. Although I could, it would just push the timeframe out a little. My plan was to be able to auto generate, or players could upload a black and white image of a certain size for the region, where white would be translated to land and black would be water/ether/lava. But yeah, anyway I can try to do this for 1.0.

RE:Building Unable to Move

2019-11-14 18:58:35
@MrArcher this is not a bug. Buildings that act as a drop-off point for harvesting cannot be moved.

Windows on ARM Support

2019-11-13 22:21:31
Wondering if any players here are using a Windows 10 ARM device, such as the new Surface Pro X or some of the older models? I think I can compile the Desktop client to support Windows 10 ARM devices, but I am not going to bother if nobody uses it.

RE:Amount of Vehicles to Build

2019-11-13 19:22:06
You need to right click on the build option in the sidebar or bottom build bar (depending on screen size). So it requires a mouse. You might be able to do a long-press and have the OS resolve that as a right-click, but I cannot confirm that.

RE:My Colony v0.99.0 Released

2019-11-12 16:59:15
@MizarAlcor

1) Yes I can add that storage, that's just an accident on my part.
2) Yes
3) I know that the other races still need better import/export buildings, it will happen
4) The non-moving LIS lander is by design. Their lander and rovers are supposed to be outdated/obsolete versions of the U.E. vehicles. I think it is a minor tradeoff since LIS has some great structures that U.E. doesn't get.

RE:Premium only on phone, and saved games wont transfer

2019-11-12 16:53:18
I have fixed your premium. For your saved games, make sure Cloud Sync is active on your colonies, on the phone.

RE:windows app crashes when account is selected

2019-11-12 16:52:20
@Emilias confirmed, and will be fixed in v0.99.0

RE:Bot / Enslaved bug disappear into a black hole v.098

2019-11-12 14:45:09
Ansom said:@bastecklein

Still present in v.99


Oops, I completely forgot about this one....

My Colony v0.99.0 Released

2019-11-11 19:46:08
The time has come for yet another My Colony update, the v0.99.0 patch, aka the Reptilian Content patch! This is a very special release, as it is the very last beta version of My Colony! It's going to be sad to see beta go, but there is a lot in store for you guys with this update. Because of some of the core changes, this update is going to take several days to push out to all platforms, with Web coming today. I actually can't even push it out to the Ape Apps Launcher yet, as the Launcher will require an update itself before this patch should go live, so please stick with me as the v0.99.0 roll-out will be a bit slower than most releases. So what's new in this patch? Let's go over it right now!

This is at it's core a Reptilian update, but there is a ton of other stuff thrown in as well. First off, and the reason for the delayed rollout, is I have taken the game-streaming option out of the core My Colony code, and transferred it to the "Web App Core" wrapper, which is the in-house wrapper I created to be able to port my games to all platforms easily. This changes the behavior by streaming your gameplay straight to your profile on the Ape Apps website, instead of to my-colony.com. I will be updating my-colony.com shortly though that will embed the stream in the same place it used to be, so for the most part it should still look the same.


I made this change for long-term planning, so that I can add streaming capabilities to my other games. The stream viewer on ape-apps.com is improved from what was available on the My Colony website. It now shows how many people are watching and lets you record the stream. It has other capabilities as well that aren't worth mentioning here, but will be implemented in other games in the future. To access your livestream page, go to your profile here on Ape Apps and click on the little video camera button on the left sidebar.

To go along with this change, the in-game streaming interface has been updated, with a new livestream control bar now appearing when you have streaming turned on.


This bar shows you how many people are watching the stream, and lets you turn either microphone or webcam on or off (previously, webcam wasn't even supported). Streaming is currently supported on Chrome, the new version of Edge, on the Desktop version, the Ape Apps Launcher, and on Android. I can't get it working right yet on iOS or Windows Store.

Moving on. Last update was the big Zolarg release, but I had accidentally forgot to make the dazzling hot-pink Etherbug buildable. This is now fixed, and you can now create the Etherbug on your Zolarg maps. Sorry about that!

A lot of people had complained about the massive gold cost on the Zolarg Unholy Pit and Unholy Tower of Stuff. I have reduced theses costs in this update to make them more reasonable. In addition, these two structures have gained storage capabilities for Charcoal, Oil, and Software.

In addition, the Zolarg Customs Processing building can now import and export Diamonds and Software.

I have made a small change to the in-game encyclopedia. Before, under each category (buildings, vehicles, etc) it said Everything you need to know... Now, it shows the number of items that are in each category (number of buildings, vehicles, etc).

I have loosened the building requirements for the Reptilian Brewmasters Den, as it was too difficult to build at the beginning, and is an essential building. I removed Helium-3 and Crystalline from the build requirements. In addition, the building now uses Ant Paste during production, instead of Helium 3.

The Powered Materials Silo has gained Software Storage, and also now acts as a drop-off point for Diamond harvesting.

I don't know if anybody had noticed, but I had inadvertently allowed Ether importing from the Reptilian Medium Range Star Gate. This has been removed. In exchange, this structure can now export Fish and Salt Water.

Speaking of Fish and Salt Water, they have both been added to the Galactic Board of Trade, and will eventually be used in other non-Water World processes. They are the two map-specific resources for the Water World.

While we are on the subject of resources, a brand new one was added to the game this update, Cobalt. Cobalt is a super-rare, because 1) it's only available on the dreaded Lava World, and 2) it only appears after a volcanic eruption.


Why Cobalt? Well, originally Obsidian was going to be the map-exclusive resource for Lava World, but I forgot and ended up adding it to everything, so that wasn't going to work. So now we have Cobalt. It's all good. Anyway, right now only the Reptilians can harvest it, but other civs will be able to after v1.0. It will be coming to the GBT on the next update as well, and will be used for new super-high-end structures on all civs. Being tied to the Lava World, I suspect it will command a pretty good price on the GBT once trading opens up.

Moving on. Since probably v0.1.0 of My Colony way back in 2016, people have been requesting to be able to move buildings once built. I haven't counted, but it's probably the top request in the game, or a close second to Mass Transit. I understand why it's been wanted. Most My Colony players are on Android, and most mobile builder games allow you to move structures. Of course, most mobile builder games are also IAP filled "diamond" (or gems or special coins) festivals that nickel and dime players by making buildings take 5 days to build unless you pay real money. My Colony isn't like that, and I never thought a move building option was realistic enough for the game, but nonetheless people still request it all the time, so for this update, I have now added an option to move buildings, with caveats.


You can now move any structure in the game, unless it is a harvest drop-off location or has it's own move function, like the Lander, Queen/Mound, or the deployed Construction Mech.

I do want to give people the option to configure and organize their base as they see fit, and I understand that as a colony grows from a small settlement to a major city, you might want to rethink the way you placed buildings at the beginning, so that is why I am allowing the move option. The reason I do not allow it on harvest drop-off spots though, should be obvious. I'm not going to let players just, for example, keep moving their Ore Refinery right next to the Ore every time a deposit is dried up. That would be lame.

Next, I have made an interface change to the mobile version of the game. Now when you are building a structure on mobile, you get the same (well, a minified) "new construction" bar that desktop players have.


This makes it easy to see what you are building will cost, and to flip structures before placing them.

So now let's talk about the meat of the update, the new Reptilian content. There are two new vehicles, the Diamond Extractor and the Cobalt Extractor (I think you can figure out what each does), and 19 new buildings, which I will list below and then talk about some of them in detail afterwards.
  • Galactic Star Gate
  • Radiated Crystal Farm
  • Advanced Materials Silo
  • Subterranean Slum
  • Raw Fish Diner
  • Deep Sea Drilling Platform
  • Coral Radiator
  • Offshore Slum
  • Dracarus Mint
  • Turbo Microreactor
  • Diamond Cobalt Microreactor
  • Basic Crystal Furnace
  • Suppertime Arena
  • Primitive Robotics Lab
  • Advanced Chip Transporter
  • Automated Software Node
  • Antanium Radiator
  • Ultra High Frequency Node
  • Near-Infinite Materials Silo
My core of thinking with this update was to make the Reptilians more playable, or rather enjoyable to play, and reduce the sheer idling time required to play a Reptilian colony. Starting with Reptilians was so slow before, that a new colony would have to idle for hours just to get anywhere, which isn't really feasible on mobile. So a lot of this content is geared towards early to early-mid game, but there are a few later-stage items as well. Structures like the Basic Crystal Furnace, the Coral Radiator, and the Dracarus Mint should help speed along early-game a bit.

Reptilians also get a couple of new housing units, both slums (of course). The Subterranean Slum is a high-density building for all maps, and the Offshore Slum is a way to gain more space on the traditionally space-limited Water World islands.


I added a couple of new Tourism related structures for Reptilians, in the form of the new Raw Fish Diner and the Audrey II inspired Suppertime Arena, where Reptilians and tourists alike can watch an evil plant eat Insectoids.


There are new much-needed upgrades to Reptilian Storage, Power generation, increased import/export capacity, Microchip production, Software production, and Bandwidth generation. Reptilians also gain the ability to build robots with the new Primitive Robotics Lab, and the ability to build Triantanium with the Antanium Radiator.

All in all, this is a fairly large update that adds some nice QOL improvements to the game, and adds much needed content and improvements to the Reptilian race (a bit for Zolarg too).

Now, to talk a bit about the future. If you missed it, I published a new episode of the My Colony Podcast last night about the coming end of beta for My Colony. v0.99.0 is in fact the 99th feature release of My Colony (which was originally published on May 16, 2016), which will make the next update the 100th feature update of My Colony, in which it will finally be bumped up to v1.0.0.

Now to me it's just a number, but since 100 of anything is generally seen as special, I think something special should happen for the next update to the game. To help kick off the v1.0.0 release, I would like to do another classic episode of the My Colony Podcast with a community group voice chat, the way the old episodes were done a couple of years ago. I would like to host the episode on one of the federation Discord channels, possibly the NOZ channel if they will allow it, and have anybody and everybody from the community be able to participate if they want to. We will just be talking about the growth and changes of the game over the last few years and bumping suggestions and ideas off of each other for the coming updates. You can also ask me anything you want about My Colony or otherwise. I think it will be a fun episode for everybody, and I hope a lot of people participate. I just need to nail down a location, time, date, and re-figure out how to record the thing. So be looking out for more information about that.

As for the update itself, I plan on adding something of an online leader-board to the game, featuring multiple in-game challenges and awards that people can participate in if they choose to. It will be optional, so you can still play as normal without doing the leader-boards, but the purpose is to have something to do in the game after you have a million people in your colony and all buildings unlocked, but it's also going to be set up in a tiered way so that new players can also participate. I still have some things to work out with it, and so you have some time to make suggestions in the forum if you want your ideas implemented!

As for a timeframe, the next release is going to take longer than normal. I go over the reasons in the latest podcast, but basically we have Thanksgiving in the U.S. coming up soon with holiday travels, and I also need to take some time away from My Colony to get work done on my other projects before the holiday season, since December is the biggest month of the year for the app business, and with my schedule I am going to be pressed for time to get much work done later in this month. So I would shoot for early-mid December for the v1.0.0 release, although there might be a couple of platform-specific bug patches between now and then, should the need arise.

Further out, v1.1.0 and v1.2.0 will probably be performance tweak related updates, since I am getting a lot of requests for those, particularly on the Android side of things, so I will have to try to see if I can squeeze more juice out of the engine. So they will still have new content, but not like 10-20+ new items like the last few updates have had. After that, I want to add crime and law enforcement to the game, and even further out, I want to add the ability to have a map with an AI controlled faction, as I want to add a new map type that is inhabited with primitive ewok-type creatures that you have to either coexist with or... something else. So stay tuned for that...

Anyway, that's all for v0.99.0. I hope you guys enjoyed it, let me know if you did (or didn't)! Like I said at the beginning, the roll-out will take several days here, but it's live and final on the Web now. Launcher will probably be next, then Steam, then Android, then Windows, and lastly iOS. I expect to have it published to all stores by Wednesday, so stay tuned!

EP12: Nearing the End of Beta!

2019-11-11 02:40:11
In this earth shattering edition of the My Colony Podcast, Brandon discusses some of the last several updates, the upcoming v0.99.0 update, and the pending 100th feature release of My Colony, which will finally bring it out of "beta" status!

What's that you say, you haven't downloaded My Colony yet? Well what are you waiting for? It's available on every device. Find download links here: https://www.my-colony-com

Try Antiquitas, the Roman themed "sister" game to My Colony: https://apps.ape-apps.com/antiquitas/

Want epic My Colony merchandise? Check out the new My Colony online store: https://teespring.com/stores/my-colony-store

Contact Information:

Attn: Brandon Stecklein
Ape Apps
PO Box 382
Spring Hill, KS 66083
United States of America

bastecklein

Developer
Member Since: 2017-09-02 00:09:04
Last Active: 2019-12-08 18:52:21
Post Count: 1967 (View Posts)
Brandon Stecklein (bastecklein) is the creator, owner, and principal developer of Ape Apps. He started the business back in 2010 and operates it out of Spring Hill, Kansas.
Welcome
Ape Apps is an independent software development company founded in 2010 by Brandon Stecklein. Over the years, Ape Apps has published over 400 apps and games across various platforms. You can get in touch with Brandon on Twitter or by leaving a post on his wall @bastecklein
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