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This page contains the most recent updates about The Red Solstice.
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The Red Solstice Steam Announcements

The Red Solstice 3.50 update. New sectors, new skills, UI updates

The Red Solstice is nearing the end of it's Early Access phase and is nearing a full release. After spending a week at the Reboot Develop conference in Dubrovnik, Croatia, where we gathered feedback from some of the veterans of the industry, and making final arrangements with our publisher Nkidu games, we are confident we can do it (if we put off nonessential tasks such as sleeping for a few months).

Work on the singleplayer campaign is continuing at full speed with most of the essential systems already in place and mission design itself being revised and polished based on internal testers feedback. In the upcoming weeks we expect that more of you who have supported us so far will get the opportunity run through at least parts of the singleplayer experience and help us make it even better with your insights and feedback.

Part of the game that has always been a bit painful for us is the UI. It has gone through multiple revisions, but we were never quite satisfied with how easy it was for new players to grasp. Now finally we are in the middle of a new revision we are confident is going to perform well both in regards to usability, esthetics and intuitiveness. Some of the new UI's elements have already been implemented with this version, while others will be introduced as they are finished. A rough sketch of the new UI has been included in this announcement.

Among other improvements provided with this update are three new components, marksman neutralizer, hellfire guardian and marksman marauder component. Work is being done on the skills that remain to be finished, and we expect to have a full set soon, ready for final balancing and polishing pass.

Work continues on the tactical mode, a special multiplayer mode that enables a player to drop with up to three AI followers and control them in a bullet time mode. Based on community input, a lot of problems have been addressed, with few, including one quite nasty random crash, still preventing us from making it part of the official release version. It can be tested in the testers branch though.

Since new systems are being introduced, some of which require their own keybinds, we had to do some beneath the hood changes to the way settings files are loaded. We apologize about custom keybinds that might have been lost in the process.

Three new sectors are in late development, including military, a large chaotic sector featuring a new mechanic concerning supply crates, and docks, a smaller sector, also featuring supply crates. All of them can already be tested on the testers version.

PS. there is a new powerful legendary item in the game. Good luck finding a way to get it.

Easter is here, so are the updates!

Hello everyone!

It's been quite a while since we did an official update post, so we'd like to use this opportunity to sum up some of the things we did in the past month or so and talk a bit about future plans.

It's been quite a frantic experience working for the deadlines we have set up for the singleplayer, and I must admit I was a bit worried work on further polishing and improving the multiplayer experience might stagnate. To my relief, just the oposite turned out to be true. Creating the singleplayer often forces us to think from a quite a different perspective, and very often the result is a "hey, that could be made to work in multiplayer also" moment.

Thanks to such moments we have the new gunship skill, native skills, and almost compleetly reworked insurgents that now have different classes of their own, each with it's unique set of skills and different strengths and weaknesses player needs to exploit in order to deal with them.

Implementing some singleplayer fearures also made us aware of quite a few user interface elements that can at times either not be visible enough, or clutter the screen too much, so they are at the moment being overhuled. You'll be seing new item interaction icons, new player marine markers, new item icons, monster hit chance and other information being displayed through symbols instead of numbers, new options regarding what information is being displayed and much more.

Some work was done on the netcode for monsters, specially the burrowing monsters, who in part used some of the very old and network resource heavy system, and are now having their own brand new small and elegant packets for each action. The way multiplayer game handles game ending has been greatly overhauled. Game will now keep players connected through the game over menu, allowing host to freely synchronize scores with the clients. As a result, players should no longer see unacurate endgame scores. We'll continue looking for problematic areas in our network system and makng them work propperly.

Players can now see their and community best statistics from the in game menu. Players can also see different community scores as a leaderboard from from the Steam page. It has recently been found that some kill scores have not been propperly calculated, so these have been fixed, but some users might still have those scores saved. For understandable reasons we are unable to test every one of those scores in every situation, so if you ever notice any of them being off, please report it through the forums. Also, please note that some or all of those stats could be reset prior to release.

There have been quite a few complaints about game crashes on end screen, soecially during longer play sessions. We have been trying to figure those out for a while, and have finally found the root cause. Few issues regardin the freing of allocated working memory have been found which led to game no longer being able to allocate new memory after a while. Unfortunately it is not a single issue so we are unable to provide a singular easy fix, but we have managed to seal some major leaks, and users are reporting noticeably improved stability. We will continue working on this issue further.

While digging through the core of our engine, we also managed to stumble on few systems that were unnecesarely draining system resources. Some querries to object lists were greatly optimized, so users, specially those with CPU bottlenecks should feel an emprovement.

Game's graphics engine has been upgraded with two new features, antialiasing and soft particles. Combined with new HDR system implemented some time ago, we are very happy with the visual aspect of the game.

Some updates ago, we introduced a preloading system as an experimental system. We have been collecting user experiences with it and are mostly happy with how it works, but have noticed some issues. Namely, preloading objects, although it can reduce cpu drain at times and increase game fluidity, can also easily overwhelm either computers working memory or GPU memory, leading to reduced performance. At this moment we recomend using this option with care.

Ironward team wishes you all a happy Easter!

The red solstice 3.02. We got updatez!

There have been complaints about de-sync problems in the game, so we have been digging through netcode a bit again. Few problematic areas have been identified and reworked in a much neater way. Namely, update information regarding marine death, revive and ailment grants have been reworked as separate packages. Code for detonating explosives has also been reworked and optimized. These changes should both prevent the desync issue and reduce the network load. We are aware of some additional problematic parts of the netcode, most pressing ones being connected with the synchronization of boss monster behavior and damage. We are still working on those and hope to have them fixed in the near future. In the meantime, if you notice any de-syncs please let us know. Any information that would allow us to pinpoint when exactly the problems happen is very valuable.

It has also been noticed that some updates ago, game experienced a drop in a general frame rate. Some time has been spent profiling for bottlenecks in the code and several has been identified and fixed. Users testing the version so far report a considerable improvement in that area. It is worth noting though that few users have been reporting performance drops on the final waves. Again, please let us know if and under what circumstances you experience any problems, so we can better identify and fix them.

While profiling for performance drops, it has been noticed that loading of certain resource files from the disk caused major performance problems, specially noticeable issue was with the boss monsters, where game would noticeably stall waiting for the sound resources to load. Same issue was noticeable at the beginning of the game where certain objects and textures were not loaded in time and were displayed as black or white squares. In order to combat that, a preloaded system was introduced. It will upon game start immediately begin loading certain resources and keep them in the working memory for as long as the game is running. This should make the game run much more smoothly and with much fewer bugs caused by resources not being loaded in time. It could increase the game's memory footprint, so you might choose not to use it (or use it only partially) if you are low on RAM as it is. In the Options menu you can choose which types of files you wish the preloader to load. Please note that it is still an experimental feature, so if you encounter problems, please try playing with different preloader settings (game needs to be restarted for preloader features to be turned off), and let us know about your results.

You should also now be able properly select default HUD options for monster and item names display from the HUD tab of the options menu.

The way game calculates damage has been a bit problematic in the past, so it has been changed, with percentage modifiers now being applied last, after the value modifiers. This new, in our opinion more logical way of calculating might have an impact on some skills and weapons. There might be adjustments in the future to keep the gameplay balanced.

There is a problem with game lobbies we have hoped we managed to solve with this update, but turns out it is still present. It has to do with the workarounds we were forced to apply in order to make full 8 man lobbies visible from the "games in progress" list. It manifests with some users entering a lobby but not being to connect or see other players. It has been noted that re-creating a lobby fixes the issue. We apologies for leaving this issue and will handle it as soon as we can.

On a more positive note, I can report that much work has been done on the singleplayer mode, with some new features being implemented, and first missions being made. Some of our users who have made special contribution, either by contributing financially or by promoting and testing the game will quite soon be given the opportunity to participate in early singleplayer testing.

Have fun!
The Red Solstice team

The red solstice 2.99 update. Now with integrated voice chat, new GUI, statistics and more bugfixes

It took us a bit longer then usual to get this official patch ready as a lot of our time goes into working on singleplayer campaign, but finally it's here.

New GUI is now in a stage where where it can finally be called an official new feature. It will probably go through some additional improvements as we gather your feedback, but it should be more intuitive and functional then the old one.

After successfully running the evil santa holiday leaderboard, we decided to make some more. Statistics panel in your multiplayer menu will no longer show "work in progress" but will be loaded with actual data. First column will show your own personal best score and second column will show best score any player has achieved. You can go through leaderboards in more detail by opening the following link Please note that leaderboards could at some point prior to release get reset.

With this update we also introduce the integrated voice chat. It works in a "push to talk" style, You will need to bind a new key for push to talk in options menu. You might also need to set voice volume also in the options menu. On the game setup menu, in game and on the end game menu you will now find icons next to player names allowing you to mute their voice chat. They will also indicate when a person is talking.

As requested a while ago, you will now also be able to automatically mute music by clicking mute music icon. It will be displayed in the left upper corner of most menus. It can also be found in game in the upper right corner after pressing escape.

Explosive items (barrels, fillers) will now explode after a random timer (about 0.8 seconds or so) if they take instant 100 or more points of damage.

All monsters of same type will no longer all be born equal. They will now have size variation of up to 20%.

Notable tweaks and bugfixes with this update include:
- ailment prevention/resistance should now work properly
- VIP will not be able to get any ailments any longer, health regeneration also increased from 2 to 3
- MERCSarmor regeneration reduced from 3 to 1
- 2 Kers should no longer spawn on wave 9 mission
- sniper will no longer revert from hollow to piercing on normal mode
- insurgents 3 will spawn evac mission
- energizer buff description changed
- you can select gender now in server lobby
- you cannot change your loadout if you are ready
- added circle for safety beacon showing the safety radius when mouse is over

Be warned marines! It's February and snatchers are very... frisky.

The Red Solstice 2.93. Killed enough Santa yet?

With update 2.93 we bring you changes including hellfire tweaks, a new monster, loadout saving, active games display and enemy at the gates mission revamp.

Our eliminate Santa contest is over!

First of all, congratulations to our winners,
Wrecker with 363 kills,
SorrowSoul with 294 and
=(eGO)= Dutchoper72 with 278. kills.

Good job people, some goodies are on their way!

We are very happy with how such events affect the gameplay and we definitely plan on holding more similar events in the future.

Looking at the list of all the players who scored at least one kill gave us some insight into a number of unique players that played over the holidays, and we were very positively surprised. Thank you all for trusting us!

After a bit of holiday of our own we're all back at the office, working at full speed. As a result, we can formally announce a number of changes including:
- Item synchronization has finally been fully implemented. Clients should now always be seeing same items in their inventory as host sees. This should eliminate rare but irritating situations where someone drops SHIVA on his head thinking he is using a medkit. Hellfire's shockwave and burst will now add to napalm burn strength, giving subsequent fire from arclite additional damage.
- Current loadout will now be saved (and synced with Steam cloud if the game was started through steam client), so players will be able to keep their loadout through multiple games.
- A new monster was added called creeper. He is spawned in dark places randomly, and will attack viciously if exposed to light.
- Enemy at the gates mission has been slightly revamped. It will now give considerably better rewards including better items and more XP.
- Lobby menu has been reworked a bit. New "active games" button will display information on all games currently in progress. This should allow players to determine more easily if a game could be opened in the near future. Additional cosmetic changes should make the menu feel more fluent overall.

The Red Solstice Christmas edition

Santa came to Tharsis looking for good children to bring presents to. He didn't find any children, but he found some STROL virus. Now he is Santa Claws a horribly mutated creature that needs to be put down ASAP.
Be the one to kill most evil Santas and receive special rewards from the Elysium corporation.

Check your current score by selecting "stats" button on the lobby menu or by browsing to the following URL:
The Red Solstice Steam Leaderboard
Leaderboard closes on January 7'th 2015.
The hunt is on!

We also decided to bring in something hot to combat winter blues. Hellfire's Arclite weapon mechanics have been reworked, giving it a substantial boost. It's flame will now set monsters on fire, making continuous burn increasingly more deadly.

Ironward team wishes all of our players merry Christmas and happy new year.

New map, new graphics, new boss, new music. Now on sale, 50% off

With this update we officially feature a new industrial themed map. It provides a dark and gritty feel. It's narrow corridors and a central defense position will require some new strategies and should provide a fresh experience to veteran players. Monsters will move 10% faster on this map.

Along with the new map we feature four new missions: In the Eye of the storm mission players will be trying to restart failed reactors and bring back colony shields while running in the dark. Remember that box of road flares you threw away? Well, sh*t happens...

Enemy at the Gates mission will teach players a valuable lesson, that the enemy at the gates is much better then the enemy rushing through the wide open gates.

Colony Defense System makes the marines deal with a case of hacked turrets. Sometimes it's worth finding the person responsible and undoing the damage they have done. Sometimes it might be preferable just to clean the mess up with some explosives.

There are many enemies in The Red Solstice. Good thing is that they can't multiply on their own. Until now. "Kill it before it lays eggs" is no longer a valid option. Can you contain the infestation from spreading before you face overgrowth?

Sargon is a burrower boss that has been introduced some time ago and has seen some tweaks to make him work properly. He is working now and we love him :)

As you have noticed, with the past updates we have been introducing some new skills, including marksman's seismic pillar and assault's T1 sensors overhaul. It is also worth mentioning that the pistol got a new burst mode that replaced seldomly used aimed mode. It was introduced as an experimental "ninja change", but we feel it can be fully featured now.

Prologue mission has been re-evaluated and a number of potential weak points have been identified. Some of them we have already managed to improve upon, so the prologue should serve it's purpose of teaching new players gameplay basics a bit better.

Recent sound engine changes have allowed us to introduce fade in/fade out effects that should make sound transitions a bit more fluid. Our composer has created some new music we'll be using to create a more dramatic atmosphere for the evacuation mission.

As a result of ongoing graphics engine upgrades, HDR effects were introduced, allowing us to create much better glow effects, more lively explosions, more toxic toxic clouds and overall more modern feel. A bug was introduced with the initial deployment of HDR system causing crashes on certain machines. With this update those issues should be resolved. HDR effects can be adjusted in the options menu.