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My Colony 2 v0.28.0 Released

Today I am putting the finishing touches on My Colony 2 v0.28.0 which should be hitting all platforms over the coming days. This update includes something new that @Architecture1134 has been pushing hard for weeks now, so let's take a look at what's included!


A couple of years ago now, Spice was added as a resource to My Starship, another title in the My Colony Universe, and now it makes it's way to My Colony 2 on the brand new Spice World map!

Spice World plays a little different from the other maps, as there are no surface resources whatsoever except for Spice. Spice is generated by Spice Veins which are scattered about the world and will continually produce more Spice deposits, so it is probably a good idea to found your first settlement near a Spice Vein.


From there, starting a settlement on a Spice World will be a long and slow process. You must fashion your initial structures out of Spare Parts which are slowly generated by your lander, and until you are able to build the Construction Yard, you will be spending some time waiting for Parts generation. The first structures you are able to build will be the new Spare Parts Bin (needed because the Lander only holds 4 Spare Parts) and the Basic Drill, a small simple drilling platform that will very slowly provide you with Ore.

While you are waiting for resources to generate, you can harvest some nearby spice with the new Spicebot. The Lander can hold 50, but you will eventually want to build a Spice Silo so you can store more Spice. Both Power and Water on Spice World are generated from the Dune inspired Wind Trap (since we are already on the Spice theme anyway), and you will need a lot of them as your settlement grows, until you are able to research and afford Nuclear Power.

Once you progress far enough in the game you will be able to harvest resources the old fashioned way using the Excavator, but until then, the new Supplies Field will provide you with a slow steady stream of Money, Ore, Gold, Aluminum and Uranium, in exchange for valuable Spice.


In the next update or two, I plan to implement a global unified server for My Colony 2, along with a new Galactic Board of Trade. At that point, you will be able to trade Spices off to other planets for profit. Until that time, Spice World is the only way to play with Spice. I will not be adding any sort of Spice Factory or other automatic Spice generation to the game, on this world or any other, so harvesting and GBT trade will be the only way to acquire Spice in the game.

Of course, Spice isn't the only new thing in this release. User @itsLiseczeq (aka cakedon) has created a new Regolith Extraction Plant which is now available on all Regolith using worlds, which was sorely needed after the changes introduced to resource consumption in the last MC2 update.


And finally for new content, if you were tired of building hundreds of greenhouse parks in order to slowly generate wood on non-atmosphere worlds, you are in luck, because the new Synthetic Wood Lab will generate wood a heck of a lot faster, as long as you can keep the factory fed with Oil and a bit of Charcoal.


Beyond the new content, and as always, a handful of bug fixes and performance improvements are along for the ride in this release as well.

As I hinted to before, next on the agenda is going to be to create a new global My Colony 2 server, similar to what MC1 has (but expanded), and implement a new Galactic Board of Trade for the game. Of course the system is made a bit more complicated by the fact that the game allows for extensive modding, but it's nothing that cannot be overcome. And of course, content updates and fixes will always be included as well!

So that is it for this update to MC2. Let me know what you think! If you find issues with the new Spice content, let me know, since I'm sure it will need expanded/changed/rebalanced as well (as new content usually does). Until then, enjoy the game, and stay tuned for more!

#mycolony2

My Colony v1.22.0 Released

Today I am finishing up and releasing the v1.22.0 update to the original My Colony, which includes a whole bunch of under-the-hood changes and a bit of new content. So what are we looking at in this release? Let's find out!


In the previous release notes for MC1, I mentioned that I was thinking about offering limited time release "collectors" edition buildings that you could get with Ape Coins for those who were interested. In this update I am testing the system out to see how it works, with the trial of a Dev Solar Panel structure (which you can see in the image above, modeled after the MC2 solar panel somewhat).

Here is how the system is (supposed) to work, which will probably need ironed out over the coming updates, but is in active testing right now. From time to time, new limited edition buildings will be made available that you can get with Ape Coins. When there is a new building available, you will see a notice on the construction sidebar like this:


Clicking on the notification will bring up a window that shows all of the current limited edition structures that are available (currently, only the testing structure is there).


This structures are purchased with Ape Coins and are tied to your Ape Apps Account, meaning that you can use them on any city on your account, and you can build as many of them as you wish. You will notice that you are able to buy multiple "copies" of them as well. The reasoning is to facilitate either trade, or to allow you to gift them to your friends who may not be able to afford them.

To trade structures with other players, you can bring up their profile card by either clicking on one of their chat messages as usual, or selecting them from your Friends list in the statistics window. Once opened, you will see two new buttons in the corner.


The Coin button allows you to just gift Ape Coins to another player. This is generally so that you can help a friend/family member buy Premium or extra content themselves using Ape Coins. You could already donate Ape Coins to another player using the Ape Apps website, but this just makes it easier, and since people have asked for the feature, they obviously did not know that the option existed on the website anyway.

The Trade looking button allows you to offer one of your purchased buildings to another player. You first select one of your owned buildings, and you then select a price. You are able to select anything between Free and 500 Ape Coins. If you want to work out a deal for more than 500 Ape Coins or for something other than Ape Coins, you will have to facilitate it outside of the app, and that is up to you. Once the offer is made, it is sent to the other player who then has one week to either accept or reject it. If they accept, the ownership of the structure is transferred over to their account.

If you look at the image above, the little golden wrench in the corner of the solar panel icon is the Set/Series icon for the structure. Collectable structures will be grouped into different sets. I am going to be working on adding a Collectables section to the Encyclopedia that will show all of the sets, all of the buildings in them, and their rarity, or how many "copies" of each building are in existence, this way in the future, people who are collecting or trading them will have an idea of their relative value.

So that is what I have so far on the collectables system. This update is for testing and refining the system, and in mid-October I plan to start releasing the first "real" buildings and sets, starting with a Halloween themed set.

I want to note that the whole collectable buildings system is meant for people who are interested in collecting things and also just want to add some extra "flare" to their colonies, and also to help support the further development of the game. There will not be any OP type structures, or structures that give a big leg up in the game. This system is going to be more for fun.

Ok so moving past the collectables stuff, this update makes a change to Poverty and Wages. Before now, it really didn't matter if you paid your colonists or not, but now it does. Colonists living under the poverty line will contribute to your disapproval rating, as will colonists earning a wage that is far below your GDP per capita. To help work your numbers out, I have added a breakdown of the monthly income and poverty levels, since the colonist salary settings are set on a monthly basis.


Right now excessive poverty will cause the crime rate in your city to rise, further damaging work efficiency and approval rating. I was planning on also making the workers go on strike, but upon testing it ended up bring pretty brutal, so I will hold off on implementing that part of it, until people can get their workers wages normalized.

This update also brings a change to Charter Codes. Since there have been a lot of charter code collisions with new colonies, all new charter codes are now 10 characters long instead of 8. @Sobeirannovaocc I hope that does not cause problems for Coloniae or any of your other tools!

Moving on. I have also basically rewritten the entire layout for Desktop, Mobile and TV of the game. I have done testing on each platform, so I hope it's not messed up, but please let me know in this thread if the layout is jacked up anywhere so I can get it fixed. For those who do not know, My Colony is written in HTML/Javascript, and I have moved the HUD UI from using absolute positioned elements to using CSS grid, like My Colony 2 does. Again, I pretty much changed everything in the stylesheets, and I think it basically looks the same as it did before, but please let me know if I borked something!

Next up, buildings in the Construction sidebar are now sorted, instead of just being thrown in there in the order that they were added to the game. The sorting uses pretty much the same scheme that My Colony 2 does, putting roads at the top, and then sorting everything else by price. Whether or not you think this is better or worse I suppose will depend on the player.

Finally, let's get to the new content in this update! I have added a new tech called the Military Industrial Complex, which in turn unlocks a new Weapons Factory which produces a new resource of Weapons of Mass Destruction! Once you have some WMD's, you can create the new Octagon structure, a military HQ that sends Starships and WMD's out into space and brings back plunder. It should be noted that the Octagon was originally going to be the Hexagon which I think sounds cooler, but I tell you that I spent a whole afternoon trying to draw a decent looking Hexagon shaped building and I just couldn't make it look right, so here we are with an Octagon instead. Deal with it!

So anyway, that about covers it for this release. The new Starship and Military content I think will fit hand-in-hand with the content coming next update, a new Dark Matter tech tree with accompanying structures that is being created by @Electrogamer1943 that you can all expect in the next update. On top of that, you can look for the new Halloween content pack coming later next month!

As always, thanks for playing the game, let me know what issues you find, and stay tuned for more!

#mycolony

Colony Wars v0.11.0 Somewhat Released

I had planned on working on Colony Wars all weekend, but I just found out that I am going to be otherwise occupied until Monday, so I am putting out what I have gotten so far on the next update, with more to come next week. These notes will be short because I'm short on time, but let's take a look!


The focus on this update was to get Super Weapons working in the game! I got the basics down, but there are no sound effects/animations/etc yet, and they still need tweaked, but you can test them out this weekend and let me know. When you deploy the Lander, you unlock the Radar Sweep super weapon, which lets you reveal a spot on the map.

There is a new Orbital Uplink Station, and building it gives you the new Orbital Bombardment super weapon. I am still working on this one, in my tests it ranged from doing almost no damage to destroying an entire base in one hit, so obviously I have more work to do.

I think there is also a bug right now where Bombers are bombing themselves.... Let me know if you can reproduce this.

That is it for now. Sadly I have to run or else I would have put more time into this update, but I will be back working next week to continue the Super Weapon rollout. So try it and let me know what you think!

https://wars.my-colony.com/

#colonywars

My Colony 2 v0.27.0 Released

In time for the weekend, My Colony 2 has just been updated to v0.27.0 and should be hitting all platforms shortly! This update has a critical fix that might actually end up killing some existing colonies, so you are going to want to read on to find out what's new!


First for the big change. As I was implementing one of the new buildings for this update (the Ancient Alien Microchip Factory), I noticed that during it's production cycle, it was not consuming any Alien Artifacts. I tweaked with the building in the game editor a bit, and still no consumption. Upon further investigation, I noticed that no building was consuming any resources, and it's been like this all along!

How I missed such an obvious flaw is beyond me, although I don't know if anybody else really noticed it either. It's easy to overlook a bug that actually benefits you, I suppose. Looking back though, stockpiling resources did always seem a bit easier in MC2 as compared to MC1.

Anyway, I went ahead and fixed the issue, loaded up my main colony, and it immediately died. Stockpiles of Ore, Gold, Wood, Charcoal, Crystalline, Rum, Uranium, you name it, all quickly evaporated. My settlements had been running so long on a balance based on zero resource consumption, I never built up the necessary production and gathering capabilities to handle the industrial output. Needless to say, it pretty much brought my entire colony to a standstill. Not only that, but since I had several settlements connected to the same resource pool using trade depots, every single one was brought down to a grinding halt!

It actually took me several hours to recover my game from this calamity. In fact, the fix required me to alter the stats of several buildings, because it became plain once resource consumption was factored in that many buildings were either under producing or over consuming resources. Because of this, production and consumption stats have been altered in this update for the Sugar Extraction Lab, Tree Farm, Charcoal Factory, Uranium Enrichment Facility, Canteen, Gold Synthesis Lab, Ore Fracking Operation, and Rum Distillery. I think I have a reasonable balance going right now, but of course there are likely things that I have overlooked. If you find structures that need rebalanced because of this changed, either buffed or nerfed in some way, let me know in the comments to this post.

Now, while I was trying to figure out this new balance, it was actually quite difficult to do at the beginning, as My Colony 2 lacks detailed resource consumption/production stats like you would find in My Colony 1. At least it did lack those stats, as this update now adds a new Resources tab to the Statistics window!


As in My Colony 1, you can select each resource to see the breakdown on which buildings are providing/using a specific resource, which is a huge help when trying to work out and balance your settlement production levels.


Of course, the resource stats are not exactly, and cannot be exactly as they are in MC1, due to the nature of resource pools in MC2. Resources in this game are not kept per-player or even per settlement, but are rather stored in dynamic "pools" that can change as time goes on based on the existence of logistics stations, outposts and other such structures. This made putting together the stats collection and reporting a bit more difficult than it was in MC1, but it's mostly working here now. To view the stats of a resource pool, you have to move your camera/viewport to a settlement first, and you will be shown the stats for the resource pool that you are currently active in. At some point I will probably make it possible to view a list of all resource pools and which settlements they are connected to, I just have not gotten to it yet.

Moving along, this update brought a few big changes to roads, changes that I started working on a few updates ago and neglected to finish until now.

Firstly, roads with either production or consumption properties (such as the Solar Road) are now finally functional. Prior to this update, you could build a huge Solar Road network with 200 tiles, and it would only produce power based on the first tile placed. Now, they work as you would expect.

Next, Roads are now actually factored in to the path finder, and their "drive speed modification" stats now actually work! You may or may not have noticed, but before this update roads had basically no impact on what your Rovers did, other than providing an aesthetic look. Roads are now fully functional, and will work in basically the same manner as they do in MC1.

Finally, and maybe most importantly, you can no build roads (and some other structures) anywhere you want, no settlement required!


Wouldn't it be nice to build a big beautiful highway connecting all of your settlements together? You couldn't do it before, but you can now! Roads can now be built anywhere, as long as you have an appropriate Rover in range. The resources used to pay for the roads will come from your closest settlement to the road in question (the closes settlement owned by the player building the road). The only restriction is that you can not build a road in a chunk/settlement that is "owned" by another player.

The Game Editor now also allows you to specify other buildings, besides roads, that can be built out-of-settlement. The only one right now is the Commemorative Plaque, since I figured it would nice to be able to place signs along the side of your highways.

Moving along, I did a lot of focus and work on performance optimizations in this release. When a map had larger settlements, the game was starting to get so laggy (at least on my M1 Mac) that it was barely playable anymore, so something had to be done. Obviously there is always more performance work to be done, but here are some of the changes so far.

Firstly, I reduced the radius of chunks that are generated around the camera, and I lowered the time that it takes before the engine clears out chunks that are no longer active around the camera. This provides a pretty large reduction in memory usage when you are in a big settlement, as it can reduce the number of .vpp models loaded in memory significantly. At some point I will probably make this a setting in the Engine Settings window, so people with epic desktop computers and RTX video cards can turn their chunk render distance way up if they want to, but since most players right now are using a smart phone, I decided to lower the default setting.

Speaking of default settings, most of the "pretty" engine settings, such as Anti Aliasing, Depth of Field, Dynamic Shadows, Fancy Water, etc, are now turned off by default. These you can always just turn back on in the settings menu if your machine can handle them, but I wanted the default settings to be low so that a new player wont get in the game and immediately experience lag if they are using a lower end machine.

A lot of improvements have also been made to the server code, which runs on a separate thread from the renderer. There was a pretty big issue where the game server would lag down hard if you had a ton of rovers in your game, since every "tick" a rover checks to see if it should be building something or not. To address this, the server now keeps track of whether or not there are actually buildings under construction, and so Rovers will only check if they should be building when there is actually something to build. Makes sense, right?

Moving along, since the last update introduced the Excavator and digging, it basically became possible to turn the Desert World map into a little water world by digging out your own lakes and rivers. Because of this, it only made sense to allow all of the water based structures and units to be constructed on the desert map.


You are now free to terraform your Desert World map into the holiday paradise that your colonists have been yearning for.

Next up, this update adds the classic Crystalbot from MC1, and with it comes the ability to create and grow Synthetic Crystalline Deposits. Be careful though, because the Synthetic Crystalline is a cancer that is as aggressive as ever, so I would suggest not building it too close to your settlement...


My original inspiration for Crystalline (back in MC1) was the Tiberium from Command and Conquer, a substance that provides power but that also spreads and can become an environmental catastrophe. For this reason, you need to take extra precautions when dealing with the synthetic stuff, as it can easily get out of hand if you let it.

I think I mentioned earlier in this post that the Ancient Alien Microchip Factory has been added to the game. This along with the Crystalline stuff requires two new techs, Ancient Alien Manufacturing and Crystalline Synthesis. I also added the new Luxury Townhome, a decorative housing unit for Premium players.

Since I was on the topic of new Research, I will mention the final engine change to this update. Players who are either in a hurry or want to speed through a new game can now instant-unlock new research using Ape Coins. Like I mentioned in the last My Colony 1 release notes, I am going to be looking for better ways to monetize the My Colony games without resorting to heavy advertising, and this seemed like a reasonable way that is totally optional and does not fundamentally change the game for existing players.

So all in all, this was a pretty big update for My Colony 2. I would suggest that all players be careful when they first open their games after the update, and to comb over your settlements and their research stats, because there will probably be things you need to change, particularly if you have an older established colony.

Moving forward, my near-term plans are to continue expanding the Alien/Quantum tech trees. I am also going to be bringing a Galactic Board of Trade to My Colony 2 in some form (gotta work out the details on that one), and I will also probably be adding a Spice World (not related to the Spice Girls) to implement some of the Spice suggestions from @Architecture1134 and others. There is also a lot coming soon to the original My Colony and to Colony Wars, but more on those another day. All in all, a lot of excitement coming to the My Colony Universe of games, and I should probably put together another episode of the My Colony Podcast to discuss it all. But until then, check out the new update, enjoy, have a good weekend, let me know what issues you find or suggestions you have, and stay tuned for more!

https://www.apewebapps.com/my-colony-2/

#mycolony2

My Colony v1.21.0 Released

Today I am putting the finishing touches on and releasing the v1.21.0 update to the original My Colony! Since interest in the original My Colony remains high, I am putting it back on the front burner, and we will discuss that more in a bit. Until then, let's take a look at what is new!


First off, and as every Ancient Astronaut Theorist knows, the Ancients were experts at brick making, and now their secrets have finally been unlocked with the introduction of the new Ancient Alien Brick Factory! A couple of these should easily take care of most or all of your colony's brick needs.

There have been requests to beef up the transportation capabilities between regional cities, so there is now a new upgrade to the Regional Bussing Authority called the Deluxe Bussing Authority! There is nothing earth-shattering here, but it does have a vastly higher bussing capacity than the current structure, which should come as a big help for many Regional players.

The last update introduced a new tech called Advanced Simulation Theory, and this update brings a long-awaited upgrade to the I.T. Studio Complex called the Simulated Software Studio! Here, virtual people, created by software, are in turn used to produce even more software. It seems unholy, but one building full of these sims can output about as much software as 50 buildings full of human workers. The A.I. is taking over!

Next up, a new late game technology has been added called Simulated Fabrication. Basically magic, this tech allows simulated people to create real things. How does it work? Who cares? Because it unlocks the shiny new Simulated Nanite Factory!


Here we have Nanite production on steroids. I don't know what the math is, but one of these things is roughly equivalent to 600 regular Nanite Factories, so it's a big deal. It might seem OP right now, but you can assume that some larger scale Nanite consumption is coming in the not-too-distant future...

There have been a couple of minor changes as well, based on user feedback. The Bulldozer behavior has been changed. Now instead of destroying buildings, it sells them, so it's basically a quick-sell toggle. Additionally, I have made all Encyclopedia entries alphabetically sorted so it's easier to actually find things.

I know there have been a lot more suggestions/requests lately, so if I did not get to yours yet then don't worry. I am reviving My Colony back to full-time production, so it will be updated a whole lot more in the weeks and months ahead (along side My Colony 2 and Colony Wars, but more on those later 🤐).

This brings me to the future of My Colony. Based on comments here, the in-game feedback and on the app stores, it's clear that people want me to continue working on and expanding the original My Colony. I am fine with doing so, but there is also the reality that it is an almost seven(!) year old game, and since it's not really a pay-to-win type In App Purchase festival, it's big income generating days have largely come and gone. So to be worth my time to keep pouring time into the original My Colony at the expense of other projects, I need to find a way to be able to make it generate a return.

So I was considering ways to do this that would not be annoying or disruptive. There are a lot of new ad formats available on mobile now, but I really didn't want to flood My Colony with annoying pop ups like every other mobile game. Then just this morning, a friend of mine told me he had spent some money buying collectors items in the game World of Tanks, and it gave me an idea for My Colony.

What if, on occasion, I made available "special edition" or limited time only releases of certain buildings, such as holiday themed variants of current buildings, that people who wanted them could buy with Ape Coins? So for instance, there could be the "Halloween 2022 Themed Investment Bank" (or anything really) that you could only buy during a two or three week period, then it's gone for good (gone for sale, if you buy it then you always have it on your account).

So anyway, people who like to collect things could get all these extra buildings. Even tough they wouldn't necessarily provide a leg up on the game, they would let you make your colony look a lot cooler, and also satisfy the collection itch. Most importantly, it would help support the continued development of this "oldy but goldy" game.

That is all just an idea though, I have not decided one way or another. I might just add that to MC2 instead.

Anyway, there is a lot more to come, not just for MC1, but for the entire My Colony Universe. I plan to get another MC2 update in this month, and I've got some really cool things headed to Colony Wars, such as Super Weapons. So stay tuned, because there is a lot of exciting My Colony goodness headed your way!

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Ape Apps, LLC 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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