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My Colony v0.99.0 Released

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!
Owner of Ape Apps
Posted by
2019-11-11 19:46:08
#2 2019-11-12 00:04:05
NOZ will absolutely allow this! Was there a day you had in mind?
Questions?
Concerns?
Feeling lonely?
Feel free to get in touch with me via message or heading over to
https://discord.gg/tsBg6Ec
#3 2019-11-12 05:54:16
Dear Bast,

Thank you for all the additions you provided us in this update, be it the little tweaks as well as the new major content. And thank you for the continuous updates of the game.

Please allow me to offer a few inputs regarding the update :

1. Resources storage : The new Near-Infinite Silo for Draco is interesting, so hard to build yet so rewarding at ~10 times the efficiency per tile of human's Grav Warehouse. If I may suggest, can you add the storage capability of storing Helium3 and Paintings to Draco storage buildings? Those two are used quite a lot by Draco civ, yet they are not stored by their main storage buildings including the Near-infinite Silo.

2. Resources import/export : Would you consider adding export/import capability of the following resources used by Draco : Clay, Regolith, and the 2 new resources that Draco will start using i.e. Robots, and Triantanium?

3. Import/export cap : For future update, would you consider adding a building with better import/export cap mainly for Zolarg, but possibly Draco as well? Right now humans can import/export at 1mil resource per batch with Starport and 100k with Stargate. Draco has been improved somewhat now at 50k per batch with the new Galactic Stargate, but Zolarg is still stuck with 1k resource per batch with Customs Processing building.

4. When talking about movable buildings, you mentioned that the Lander can be moved, but this applies only for United Earth Lander. The LIS Lander can not be moved currently, is this intended by design? If not intended, would you add moving capability for LIS Lander as well?

Thank you.

Edited by MizarAlcor on 2019-11-12 05:55:06
#4 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.
Owner of Ape Apps
#5 2019-11-12 18:02:03
Dear Bast,

Thank you for your feedback and explanation on the questions, that helps to clear things up.

In the topic of LIS, I would like to bring to your attention that amongst all 4 civs, LIS is the only one which can't grow crystals in some of its worlds, due to lack of rovers/bots.

- UE can grow crystals in all 5 worlds.
- Draco can grow crystals in all 4 worlds.
- Zolarg can grow crystals in all 5 worlds.
- LIS can only grow crystal in Ice World, due to Tundra Rover being limited to Ice World only.

LIS can even research Crystalline Synthesis in Asteroid, Abandoned, and Water World, yet can not do anything with that research as it doesn't have any bots/rovers which can build the Synthetic Crystallines.

Hope this can be considered in future patch, so a LIS player can get crystals earlier than Research Converter stage.
Edited by MizarAlcor on 2019-11-12 18:03:13
#6 2019-11-12 21:09:06
I very like the idea (vulcanic eruption+rare material), but the draconian harvester are pretty mess up... often they don't harvest, just run from one cobalt deposit to an other cobalt deposit. Some time they ignore the lava, other time are blocked.
#7 2019-11-13 16:08:15
Thank you for all of your hard work sir. We greatly appreciate you for it. Now, on to it.

In Zolarg civ, there is an issue with some of the harvesting, namely the harvesting of sugar. Specifically, the drones seem to not go after the closest items to be harvested like everything else does. I usually have to end up just bulldozing whole groves (is that the right term?), of sugar just to continue building the colony. It can be frustrating when the drones are ignoring a group of 10-20 sugar plants literally next to a structure that is a drop-off point for sugar, and going 20+ tiles away to harvest. Since the other bugs don't do this, and neither do any of the rovers, well....

Just a minor thing I guess, but this has been going on since I started my first Zolarg colony over a year ago.
#8 2019-11-13 23:28:36
Ansom said:I very like the idea (vulcanic eruption+rare material), but the draconian harvester are pretty mess up... often they don't harvest, just run from one cobalt deposit to an other cobalt deposit. Some time they ignore the lava, other time are blocked.



Uhm, most of bot/bug problem seems solved by activating the Low Res Mode.
#9 2019-11-14 03:45:00
An idea of mine got added to the game! I can die now :D
#10 2019-11-14 19:56:10
Hey @Bastecklein

I think for the 100th update, something special to add could be uniform terrain generation across an entire region. Right now rivers generate randomly in each map created on a region. I'm thinking we should generate the rivers on each tile of the region as the region is being created and ensure that the terrain on each tile fits together to make natural land and water formations, so that the player can look at the whole region and decide which place would be best to build based on the bodies of water it's near.

Sure, this would break the option to have a blank map, but I'm thinking that even if a player chooses a blank map, they should still be forced to deal with the bodies of water or ether. To make up for this, you could implement a new resource called Land-Fillers that could be used to eventually remove the water and give the colony more room to grow. Also, rivers could be less abundant when generated throughout the region, so players could still get maps that are entirely on land. I also imagine some seas and beaches being a generated thing as well.

Also, in addition to those, would be awesome if the player could look at the region and it's terrain to see if it looks like something they can work with , and have the option to press a regenerate button to randomly regenerate a new map to decide on, before even creating the region. The game Factorio has a similar map "preview" feature if you need an example of what I'm talking about. It wouldn't have to show all the little resource nodes, just the land and water masses.

I think this should be a feature in a completed game, as the per-map terrain generation looks a bit janky and half-baked if you ask me. A whole-region generation would be like wax on a new car that's yet to be sold, it would make a gigantic difference and be very fitting for a 1.0 release.
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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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