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Astronautz

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A member registered Nov 11, 2018 · View creator page →

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> Major cities could be the places where you can buy and repair weapons and armors, sell stuff, heal your soldiers, hire squad members etc. 

The problem with that is that the player has to travel back and forth to the repair shop location to fix weapons. With the new design, if an enemy counter-attack is expected the player's squad can wait in the current village, keeping it safe, while repairing / healing, without needing to track back.

> You are right, some of the enemies will try to move closer in order to hit me, but most of them stay basically at one spot. This occurs most frequently when you hide behind a fence or an object like a car. When you hide in a building the AI most of the times works great:  they will try to enter from various sides and kill you if the enemy outnumbers you. So I think that maybe the calculated hit probability is is misleading the AI: If someone hides behind an object and you aim at him, the crosshair turns green. I think you mentioned earlier in another thread that the obstacle is not taken into account when calculating the hit probability. Maybe this is the reason why the AI keeps trying to kill you and misses almost all the time.

There is a problem if there is a tall thin object, such as a post in front of the target. I can fix this though in the next version.

> And yes, it is true that some enemies wait for an interrupt. But the majority keeps trying to shoot and stay uncovered.

> I don't see a problem. If you take good cover, you should be able to defeat the enemy. That is the whole point of the game.

> I think it is ok for easy and normal skill level. But pro players will discover this exploit easily and win almost any battle (i am only a casual player and discovererd it quickly). I think that very hard skill level should be insanely difficult, making it almost impossible to win when your players are outnumbered.

I could make more of the enemy try and flank the player's squad on higher difficulty. Also, maybe send one soldier to completely circumvent the player's cover and come from around the back. 

> Your answer from the other thread: > If you overwhelmed by enemies, then you could just play on an easier level. Apart from that, I could make Ben Dabi take a more defensive attack.

> Being overwhelmed by the enemy is not the problem. I manage to win most of these battles (also on hard and very hard skill level), but my Ben Dani allies are only useful as human shields: The AI will always try to shoot them, as they are standing around completely uncovered. I put my soldiers in covered positions and take out the enemies while they are busy killing the Ben Dabis. When they finally eliminate the Ben Dabis I usually have managed to kill a lot of enemies. The remaining enemies now will try to attack my soldiers, but are too weak to achieve this. This tactic is ok, but I would prefer my allies to do a better job than only playing human shields :) 

so, the best solution is to just make allies more defensive. For instance, if they shoot only once, then they have more APs to find cover.

> I like the idea of being able to add more soldiers to your squad. In the current version I can't afford to lose any of my soldiers and I keep restarting the battle until I  manage to win it with all of my  soldiers surviving. Your draft could bring back some of the the good old x-com strategy: train a core of good soldiers and hire normal soldiers to provide back up - and who can be reemplaced if they are killed in a battle.

I just play the battle again if one of my soldiers gets killed, but it'd be handy to have a substitute while one soldier is being healed

> Personally I don't see any need for equipping gunsmiths and armourers. This could turn the game into another "gain resources and start to produce goods and weapons" strategy game. I suggest to keep the strategic part simple. Collecting taxes and hiring people etc. sounds good. But I think it would be sufficient to be able to buy (or repair) weapons in bigger cities, without having to take care of employing and equipping a gunsmith. Until now I actually never have bought (and very rarely repaired) a weapon. The weapons dropped by dead soldiers are more than enough to equip the own squad.

Sometimes the enemy drop weapons in good nick, but usually they need repair. Also, the guns wear out the more you shoot. Eventually, you will get a gun jam if you don't repair. 

> Non-aggression agreements with stronger clans seems an interesting strategic element. Have you thought about other types of agreements too? Maybe instead of non-aggression agreements players could also try to ally to another clan and not have to pay tributes. The player than has to join this clan in battles (maybe against an enemy both have in common) to gain reputation. If the player's reputation with the clan is good, the clan won't attack, but if the reputation is too low, the clan will abandon the agreement and start to attack.

The reason for this feature is because there will be an enemy that's close to the player's home and unbeatable in the beginning. The player then has his objective very clear, to become powerful enough to eventually over power this enemy. Also, the protection money paid will be very high and the player will be forced to expand to earn more taxes. I don't think I want to add more complex agreements

This is the first draft of the new strategic design. This is only a rough draft and will tweaked a lot as it's implemented.

The strategic game will change to focus on occupying territory. The player will start off with one village and try to expand from there.

Each village that the player owns contributes certain amount of weekly tax to the players earnings and has a small labor pool.

Each person in the labour pool has the following skills:

Life points, Accuracy, APs, auto skill, interrupt skill, repair skill, medical skill

The player can hire anyone from the labour pool for a specific assignment according to his/her skills. 

The player must pay a weekly fee up front, plus an initial hiring cost, which is 20% of the weekly fee.

The size of this fee depends on the skills of the employee.

Assignments are as follows:

Soldier in players squad, militia man (used to garrison villages),  gunsmith / armourer,  medic

Possible labour pool for players home village would look like this:

Soldiers in player's squad are directly controlled by the player in a battle and militia men are controlled by the AI. Soldier's in players squad are paid 4 times their normal salary.

The player must supply militia men with weapons, gunsmiths / armourers with tools and medics with med kits to do their jobs.

Each worker can be given any assignment at anytime, which include guarding village, repairing, etc., or traveling to another location.

Each employee can be equipped with any equipment from the village storehouse.

Each village will send out raiding parties to surrounding villages (as in current game). Raiding parties can only be seen from one hex space away. The player can send militia men to any hex space to act as scouts (i.e. to give advanced warning of incoming raiding parties).

When a battle starts all workers in that location will be put in to the battle and can get injured (even if not employed as militia men). Medics and gunsmiths will fight if armed, otherwise they will try to avoid contact with the enemy.

At the start of each week all employees have to be paid in advance, or let go. They can also be reassigned to a different task. The player has an initial amount of capital, so initially salaries can be higher than tax income, but when capital runs out he will have to let employees go.

At the start of each week, new people may enter the village and can be hired.

Some characters will work for free (such as Watski in the current game)


The map will be hexagonal. Each hexagonal space on the map will contain, either empty country side, a village, or mountains / rivers (impassible)

Each village is normally occupied by a hostile militia clan. Each militia will be constantly trying to take over adjacent villages, by sending out attack parties.

Some clans will be too strong for the player to defeat and so the player can ask for a non-aggression agreement, but this means that the player will have to pay a weekly tribute.

Initially, travel is by foot. Traveling through a hex space with a road takes 6 hours and 12 hours if there is no road. If a location is occupied by the player's militia they can see approaching enemy attacks from adjacent spaces. 

These rules can get infinitely complicated if you get carried away,  so I want to keep things as simple as possible for the time being. Any comments , or ideas are welcome.

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Replying to both Petf and Tchey:

> Almost all other similar games do click, not drag. Both should coexiste, actually, but IMO "click" is a must unless you like to disturb players habits for... no reason. Drag is usually used for precise tactical behavior, like Door Kickers or Frozen Synapse, where you must do several things on the way. and phone/touch games, but let’s not talk about those horrible GUI here...

I see now that you are right. But if I use a left click to create path, then I can no longer use left click for panning.  I would have to change panning to either right, or middle button click.

> Often the camera still hides somethings i’d like to see. If not free at the very least it should cover 4x90° not just 2x180° Also for pure cosmetic, i like moving the camera around. It’s a big QoL in "all" games, i think.

I will look into it. 

> Same here, watch the images I uploaded in  my last reply in the thread I opened here: Testing V 1.2.1. The AI will always come for you so there is no need for taking any risk and leave the cover. Sometimes you have to send one of your soldiers to wake the enemy up, then run back and prepare the ambush. It works many times, also on very hard skill level.

I don't see any problem with that, considering the player has used good tactics in finding good cover (which will not always be located near the deployment zone). Also, in big scenes not all the enemy attack in the first wave. The player will have to leave the cover to seek the rest of the enemy on the other side of the battlefield. As I said in previous thread, I could make new behaviour that the militia retreat to a building once they have taken a lot of damage.

> Also the AI of allied troops could be better. I am currently playing the full version and I am fighting the cities that are not available in demo. There are so many enemies that you need some allies. But it is disappointing to see Ben Dabi forces  running into the opponents' fire completely uncovered.

If you overwhelmed by enemies, then you could just play on an easier level. Apart from that, I could make Ben Dabi take a more defensive attack.

> I also agree with  the proposed improvements for the "strategy map". Anyway I think Ed is going to change some things there, so I will wait for future updates.

I'm working on that ;)

> The game crashes when I go back to Ben Dabi in order to meet my fellow merc and it also crashes when I have earned enough reputation to make Leonidas join my squad: When I go back to Ben Dabi on the strategy map to meet Leonidas, the game crashes (on linux and windows).

As I said in previous thread, I can't reproduce. I'll have another look, but if you could send me the game save data that would be useful.

> I am still fighting the last villages in the full version and my allies are so annoying... They seem like lemmings, rushing for the enemy and trying to catch some bullets. And when all allies get killed before you win the battle, the Ben Dabi forces won't move in to these places (on the strategy map). So the enemy can easily retake these places once you have left. Is meant to be designed this way?

The Ben Dabi uses a slightly modified AI algorithm as the enemy, but as I said before I could make it more defensive.

> I would suggest some kind of communication with allied forces on the tactical map. It is ok that you don't share their FOV. But there could be some interaction like status infos (enemy spotted, enemy in this building etc.) and I would suggest a way of asking the allies to do certain things (take cover, stick together, attack, flank the enemy etc). Maybe this could increase the probability to survive for some of them.

Ok, I will think about that.

Hi Petf, sorry I didn't answer before, I only noticed this post today.

> I checked the flickering issue again and it it caused by firefox hardware acceleration, so nothing wrong with the game.

that's good to know.

> But I found a bug on strategy map on very hard skill level: When you return to Ben Dabi to meet your partner and to make him rejoin the squad after conquering the villages he indicated, the game crashes and reports a memory access error. This bug can be reproduced.

I can't reproduce this bug. Maybe if you have saved a game just before the bug occurs, you could send me the game save data and I will have a look at it.

The game save data is stored as a number of files in the "C:\Users\{user name}\AppData\Roaming\MercTactics" under Windows

and in {home dir}/MercTactics/gameSave directory under Linux 

> I am playing a campaign on very hard skill level and it is really hard, so don't get me wrong. If the enemy outnumbers me, there usually is no chance of winning the battle. Anyway sometimes the AI doesn't manage to defeat you when hiding your squad. They just stand around, try to fire at you but hardly ever hit, because your soldiers are well protected behind some objects. See these images: 

> 7 enemies attacking 3 mercs armed only with light weapons. I tried to hide in the building some times but they came from everywhere and kicked my ass. So I restarted the battle some times and tried this place. For whatever reason the AI in this case doesn't try to attack from various sides. All enemies stay  basically at the same spot and wait for me to take take them out. 

You say that all enemies stayed in the same position, but I see in the second image two of the bodies are in different positions. It looks like two of them did try to move in (obviously you were able to kill them before they got any closer). 

The AI algorithm works as follows: if it has already missed in previous turn and does not have a good shot it will either: 1) move for a better shot, 2) wait for an interrupt

> This sometime occurs in buildings too. Normally the AI moves in quickly and kills your mercs. But sometimes it doesn't move in and tries to shoot through the windows from the outside. That makes it easy to kill them because the own mercs are protected by the building and the enemies are completely uncovered. Doesn't happen frecuently, but frecuent enough to restart the battle an win it after some try and error.

I don't see a problem. If you take good cover, you should be able to defeat the enemy. That is the whole point of the game. 

> Suggestion: AI should notice that its soldiers are suffering severe damage while causing very little damage to the mercs. When the ratio is too bad for the AI, it should change its strategy and attack in a different way.

> And another thought: The AI always attacks. I just have to wait for them to come for me with the advantage for me to kill some of them uncovered. The AI could use different strategies, for example hide in a building and wait for me to attack.

Maybe I could combine both of these ideas: when militia group receives a certain amount of damage, they abandon the attack and move to a place with good cover and wait for the player to attack

Hello Tchey,

Thanks for the feedback.

+- from itchio app, game doesn’t run, must go to local folder and run the MercTactics launcher manually

I think the itchio app is looking for a script to run the game. That should be easy to fix.

- drag to move is fine, but a click once to target, click again to confirm, would feel better IMO

I don't think that's a good idea. It would slow things down, besides there is an "undo" button in case you make a mistake.

- same for shooting, click to target and see details, click again to confirm, would be good

I will look into it.

-- driving around to reach shop, recruit, heal etc is no fun. I read you want to improve battlescape first, geoscape later, so there is hope !

I would prefer a "base" instead, but not sure if you can or want to do so.  Maybe at least a mobile truck with some basics, instead of the jeep ?  Maybe let the player select a few nodes to have camps/bases, with some steps to improve them with money, reputations, something, and attracting bandits to attack ?

I have a plan to change the strategic part of the game (i.e. the 2D map). I will write a post soon, explaining that.

- Free camera please ? also when i switch camera, the direction are inverted too, ie right arrow moves the map to the left.

I am not too keen about the free camera, because it just creates more work for the player, without being really necessary. I will fix the key issue.

+- Mouse customization, so i could use MMB to pan the view, LMB to select, RMB to fire, Thumb mouse button to open inventory, etc 

that seems like a good idea, I will look into it

+- A way to remove roof, without having a unit inside ?

The roofs disappear once your mercs come close to the building. This is so that you can't see everything until you explore the scene.

+- Deployement is too often similar, a road, some buildings, an open space to deploy first turn i  run to cover and wait for the AI to attack, as they always find me it seems.

Yes, I want to vary the types of scene. I have planned to add a randomised building generator, which should give more type of building.

- AI was "stuck" a few times, while my men where behind heavy covers, untouchable. I just stand, shot, kneel, the AI shot at my cover, repeat until victory.

The enemy should be occasionally be able to hit you, even if hiding behind wall. Also, they try to flank your position, or try to get an interrupt, after missing several times. It could be a bug. I will look into it.

Thanks for your reply and yes, I would like to test the full version of the game.

Just email me at edwelch@astronautz.com and I'll send you a link to the linux version (I assume you are using linux)

> 1. Tactical map: When you kill an enemy next to a car, the death-animation goes through the car. It is really a minor issue, because at the end of the animation everything is fine again.

Yep, the code that prevents intersection isn't perfect, but works most of the time

> 2. Strategy map: When you move to the last available village in the demo version and don't do anything for a long while, your allies will conquer almost the whole map. After that, nothing occurs for a long time. But at about day 200 the paths on the map start to flicker at random. The flickering increases and finally the whole screen flickers and leads to a total system crash, forcing you to perform a hard reboot (tested on Ubuntu 20.04).

Thanks for spotting that, I'll fix it in the next version 

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Thanks very much for the praise Petf and glad you liked the game and didn't find bugs (I guess the stability release paid off ;) )

>All the battle-maps are designed more or less in the same way: a street in the middle and some houses on both sides. This can get boring after a while as it allows players to use the same tactics on about all the maps.

> I think you could add greater variety to the map design without even creating new artwork by just balancing houses, streets and landscape differently on each map. With the objects included already in the game you could  create a map without the notorious street in the middle and set it up for example with only houses and narrow paths between them. This would create a sort of urban warfare battleground allowing players to take advantage of light weapons. Other maps could be forests or fields, consisting of only bushes and trees, forcing players to use different tactics (and weapons) on each landscape.

Currently, the layout of the village is randomised, so there are several layout possibilities, with 1 - 4 roads and sometimes buildings on one, or more sides of the road. Sometimes it will layout several buildings close together and sometimes spread out. I could add forested areas, or orchards and rock fields. Also, if you meet the enemy on the road between villages you will see a countryside scene, with trees, rocks and maybe one or two shacks. At the moment the rock field generation is not good. I will fix that. Also, I want to implement a randomised building generator. This would make a lot more varied types of building and could make huge buildings, so the battle could take place mostly indoors.

> The mission objectives could me more variable. What about taking/defending a certain object (building or bridge)? What about hostage rescue or protecting civilians / refugees? Or giving cover to a person that has to walk to a certain point on the map? The person could be an unarmed member of your team, allowing you to control his movements in these missions...

That's a good idea, I want to do something like that.

> Grenades have already been demanded. I would like to add a sniper rifle, smoke and flashbang nades to the wishlist, providing new tactics to the players. And what about a rocket launcher? (remembering the good old x-com days...)

Yes, grenades & launchers are at the top of my list of todo features. Sniper rifles already exist, but they are only in the full version. Let me know if you want the full version and I will send you a download link (I offer this version to anyone who gives feedback)

> A way of healing your soldiers without having to drive to the hospital all the time would be nice. Continuous self-healing or pop-ups offering medical aid for cash would be an option. What about medi-packs in the game?

> I am collecting loads of useless weapons and have to drive a long way to sell them. You could also add pop-ups with merchants offering to buy those weapons, maybe for a worse price but without having to drive to another city.

I'm going to change this in future versions. At the moment I am adding features to the tactical part of the game (i.e. the battles). Once I have improved that I will work on the strategic part of the game (i.e. the 2D map). I am going to get rid of hospitals and workshops and use medics to heal mercs and gunsmiths to repair weapons.

> You could add more interaction with allies. They could request assistance for attacking certain places. And players could request assistance for their intended attacks.

The goal is to assist the Ben Dabi militia in any battle they may engage in, so if you see them moving to attack a village you should in to assist. 

> I would also apreciate (as other players have mentioned here), to be able to fire although the enemy is out of range. There can be reasons to shoot although the hit probability is very low. For example when a group of enemies is approaching you may hit any of them when shooting at random. This would also enable you to draw the enemies' attention to a certain player (in safe distance) and leading them to an ambush you prepared for them. 

You can already fire beyond the effective range by 60%. I will look into making it more.

> Reverse Angle Camera: works great, but what about more angles? or even free camera rotation? When you are in a building sometimes none of the available angles will work for you.

I will look into it. 

> Diffculty: On easy level most of the missions are a piece of cake, that's ok. But 2 or 3 cities in the middle of nowhere are defended by about 2 or 3 times as many defenders equipped with powerful weapons which makes it hard (i think almost impossible for novice players) to win these battles.

On easy level you have villages with 1 - 2 enemies at the start. Later on it's 3 - 9 enemies (bear in mind you will have increased your squad size by then). I guess could reduce that to 3 - 7 max enemies.

> The hard level could be more tricky. Once you learn the AI's tactics it is easy to outskill them. You just have to build your fortress in a building or behind a wall with all your soldiers assembled at one place - and let the enemy attack. They will do the favour. After some hiding they will start to run uncovered into your ambush and you can take them out 1 by 1 (which ist fun anyway :). Just stand up, shoot and crouch again. Your soldiers are almost invulnerable behind objects. Those enemies who manage to make it into your fortress will be killed by one soldier who has saved some APs for exactly this purpose. This tactic allows you to collect the assault rifles your dead enemies leave on the floor although your soldiers were only armed with pistols. Suggestion: AI (enemies an allies) should try to take better cover and not head directly to their opponents but look for a sneaky way, where you can't spot them or where they are covered.

If the hard level is too easy you can switch to "very hard". Some scenes have very little walls, or the walls are on the opposite side of the village, so you may not have it so easy to make an ambush. The AI will eventually try to flank your position. I could add an AI behaviour so they completely walk around your cover and come in behind you.

> My previous game settings, like "windowed mode" ignored.

That is a bug. The new version was meant to be able to read the old settings

>  Not sure if any other back compatibilities broken by that old AppData

Don't worry about it, everything should be fine ;)

1.2 breaks compatibility of old games, but that does not always happen when we release a new version. When you create a new campaign, all these old game saves are deleted

Ok, if that makes things easier. I setup a discord server. This is the link: https://discord.gg/PeecKue3

Just to let you know, some of your suggestions have been implemented in version 1.2. 

The target indicator color now indicates actual probability of hitting the target. Weapon ranges have been increase and lower accuracy levels are now more accurate.

Also, I implemented the suggestion  of Ursom for AI zonal defence.  So, in big battle scenes, some enemy stay at their patrol zones, this means player has to keep moving through the battlefield after defeating the first wave of attackers. 

There was quite a lot of changes in 1.2, so I didn't have time to implement everything.

I think these suggestions were very good and have improved the game, so well done ;) If you want a full version of the game for testing please let me know and I will send you a link.

> Oh, btw, the in-game description of armor's Protection value is bugged. 

Thank's for the tip. I'll fix that.

If you spot an enemy sentry and then hide behind a building you can catch him with an interrupt when he comes to look for you, firing with silenced gun so no one hears.  But if the sentry manages to fire at you, then his shot will alert nearby soldiers, so in that case the silencer would not be of benefit. 

 Also, firing with silencer doesn't incur the normal hearing range penalty when you fire, so you can hear further.

Of course not, that would delete all the old game saves

Ok, I'll look into it ;)

> About the accuracy - to be frank, I don't think that fully-visible hit chance is needed. All I ask for is a color-coded approximated accuracy (green - a very likely hit, or even sure; yellow - around fifty-fifty; red - don't count on it; maybe some in-between shades).

Ok, I'll think about it.

> Also, how does the accuracy for burst and autofire works? 

Burst fire is 25% more accurate than full auto. And yes it's a cone of inaccuracy. If the merc has auto fire skill of 4 then the first bullet has no auto fire penalty and the rest are 45% more accurate than full auto. This is similar to how it works in real life, because the recoil is what makes auto fire inaccurate.

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Thanks for the feedback Adzipl.  I will go though your points one by one:

> the concept of units moving around and being able to join ongoing fights, and the possibility of 3-way (or maybe even more?) battles is absolutely cool
yes, it's more. There is no actual limit for number of parties in battle. 
- graphics are servicable, yet very light on the computer.
> ragdoll physics are cool, possibly because killed characters do not go fully limp immediately...?
I have not implemented ragdoll physics yet. I use 20 different death animations.

what I did not like
- the so limited range on everything, and the lack of accuracy - I think that the "range compression" in this game goes way overboard, in my opinion, especially as weapons have absolutely-cut-off-range, out of which they cannot fire at all. I do not demand a simulation here, but when I see enemies firing from one square further that I can at me, and then dancing away, it looks just silly... also, the absolutely atrocious lack of accuracy when firing at anything past a few steps - it is hampering for the actual "tactics" aspect of the game, because, if the fight is in the open (which can often apply even in town battles), then both sides are forced to fire very inaccurately at each other, which basically nullifies any advantage which could be gained from smart Interrupts or firing first. We are supposed to be fighting with guns here, not knives. This goes double for any and all burst/autofire weapons - if they are not fired from adjacent space, bullets are spread around everywhere so much that it can't even be exploited for firing on, for example, bunched-up groups of enemies, yet, if they are fired from up close, one can bet on all the bullets hitting right on.

First off, the accuracy calculation in the current version is sub-optimal. The lower accuracy ratings were too inaccuate. I have already fixed that in the next version. 
Bear in mind, that accuracy varies between 1-10. If your merc has an accuracy of 3 you should expect him to miss a lot of shots, because 3 means inaccurate. However, a soldier with 10 accuracy firing a weapon with 10 accuracy is nearly guaranteed to hit anything it shots at. Auto fire is more accurate in burst mode, or "fast burst" than full auto. Firing a MAC11 or RPK with fast burst at a group of enemies and you will normally hit a few of them.

> I'd say that increasing the range and on everything, reducing the effect of the range, but implementing the possibility of firing out of the range with a LARGE penalty to accuracy (like in old JA games) would work quite well. 

Ok, I can try increasing range to a degree.  But I don't see having a cut off range as a problem. When you attack enemies who have longer range weapons, that causes a dilemma, which the player must solve using tactics and that makes the game more interesting. 

> Also, the target indicators over enemies should really show the approximate chance to hit by their colour - I hate seeing them all green, only for the shots to be basically wishful thinking.
The color of the target indicator only tells you how much of the target is behind cover, not the chance of hitting it. I could add hit chance as a number I suppose.

> (although I've noticed that hits, apart from HP loss and possible skill decreases, also have some short term effects on target's AP next turn. Mind elaborating on that?)
Yes, when a soldier is hit he temporarily loses some action points. Those action points are slowly recovered in following turns (the same as in JA)

> Also, do you plan on implementing something like "aimed shots", either old XCOM or JA-style?

I will consider it

> somewhat low damage/HP ratio in the game: taking all things into considering, the fact that the main character has a classic FPS hero's durability works quite well, but the enemies can also be weirdly tanky, and it can also hamper tactics, when you literally cannot eliminate that opponent as a threat. It feels more like playing old Fallout than XCOM or JA at this point.

Sorry, I don't understand what you mean by "weirdly tanky"

> - maaybe some (limited, or more time-consuming) possibilities of HP recovery without having to go to Infirmaries would be nice...?

Yes, maybe in future versions.

I recently discovered that Avast was flagging my Windows installer as malware. Looking into it, it seems that it didn't like the file "uninstall.exe", which is included by the NSIS installer. I tried repackaging the game using the exact same files, and this time it doesn't flag anything. It seems like their malware detection program is very buggy. Anyway I discovered a site where you can check your installer before uploading it: https://www.virustotal.com/gui/home/upload

Avast anti virus was incorrectly flagging the Windows installer as malware. I repackaged a new version (MercTacticsDemoSetupBeta1.1a.exe). This is the exact same package as the previous version, however Avast no longer flags it as malware.

There is no stealth. Your soldiers can hear nearby enemy movement and the enemy are alerted by sound of gun fire. In the next version you can attach silencers to guns.

Yes, any object in the way of a target will make it harder to hit. However, the trajectory of the shot is based on precise geometry calculation. Jagged Alliance is a 2D game, so shot hit chance is based on rolling a dice.

No, there is no "moving target" penalty

It's a false positive. Avast is notorious for reporting false positives. I have reported the issue to Avast and hopefully they will resolve the issue

Amongst the features planned for version 1.2 is the ability to add scope and silencer attachments to guns.

There are two types of scope: scout and sniper. Both increase accuracy and visual range, however the sniper scope gives more accuracy and more visual range. Only rifles can accept scope attachments.

Silencers can come in 9mm and 5.56mm caliber versions. Only certain guns can accept silencers. Silencers can be changed during the battle (unlike scopes). Shooting a weapon with silencer will not alert the enemy to your whereabouts, but reduces the power of the gun by 10%. 

Both scopes and silencers are obtained by purchasing in arms dealer, or more likely dropped by enemy soldiers.

Yeah, I'm not going to implement hidden scenery. The inside of buildings are hidden by roofs, which become invisible when your soldiers  approach, so that in a way is hidding some of the scene.

> When i rotate map during battle, i think the sound doesn't rotate with map... it shoots in a wrong ear when listening in a headset...

> During enemy's turn, when 3 teams playing - I think i've seen bullets flying and hitting objects in distant areas away from my team, where they theoretically shouldn't see them. Not sure if it's an issue, please take a look.

Yes, I can fix these two issues easily

> And regarding AI strategy discussion - without splitting enemies into smaller specialized groups, I'm getting this deployment at the first move in 4vs9 quick battle:

Yeah, that can happen if you select the "extra enemy" option. The 2nd militia group can enter via the same road as you do, and then they will be just ahead of you. If you are playing a campaign though, it's much less likely to happen.

Hi Ursom,
Thanks for posting. Great to get some feedback.

> I understand why you planning to deploy it at Steam, but Linux community would most likely pay for DRM-free version, so please consider gog.com at least.
We probably also release final paid version here on Itch, which is also DRM free. I heard gog.com reject most indie games.

> I see that file structure is open and clear, so making it a mod-frienly platform should be... an achievable goal. A modular structure, a few howtos, map editor and placing AI in separate file, all packaged in mod folder - will make this game immortal.
...and yes, multiplayer is always a challenge, but p2p multi-team battle would make it an outstanding game! Community may help if you make API for external multiplayer module.

Yes, I would like these features, especially modding, but these would be in the long term. There are too many other new features that I want to add first

> AI has good tactics and bad strategy, so here are few possible improvements: currently enemies act in a zerg-rush fashion (especially on open road quick battle) that makes player to stand against in a single spot through the whole match. I understand that in real world it's usually like that, but In classic xcom aliens tend to stick to important locations in small dedicated groups that makes player explore the map and "perform tactics".  There could be several AI styles for those groups, like one group prefers hideouts, another patrols, attacks, etc... again, making game more open for modding will benefit in community help on such things and give you more time to work on engine.

At the moment, when the AI are defending a village they patrol areas, until they are alerted by sound of gun fire. If they are attacking a village they fan out looking for enemy. I'm considering making some scenes where the enemy are separated into different areas, meaning the player would have to clear one area before advancing into the next

> Guess what was the killer-feature of Raumschach in 1907 and also xcom and doom back in 1993? - stairs. Seriously, multi-layer map is a must-have tactics feature since that.

I want to add levels, but that's a big change to the game. As I said, there are other easier to implement features that I want to add first

> Regarding maps - I would strongly recommend more trees and rocks to hide behind, cuz big open areas don't make people adventurers. Also multi-layer map unlocks such cool thinks like sewerage routes and rope bridges above streets...

Villages have a lot of cover and country scenes not so much, that is deliberate. If you are smart you should avoid a battle in the country, especially if the enemy are strong. Having said that I intend to change the rock-field creation algorithm to give better cover.

> I enjoy your characters personality and this reminds me another game where you could make use of some ideas... the game called "Commandos" had cool features like movable items, climbing over walls, traps, etc. Speaking of xcom features - adding a grenade launcher and regular nades will make players to spread and leave hideouts. Proximity mines is a holly war topic but i have to raise it)))

Grenades and mines are top priority features. For the next version, I am working on scopes and silencers.  I have to prioritise features, based on how difficult they are to implement and the value they give to the game. So, the game will improve in small steps,  each release getting a few new improvements.

> Suggestion/idea: the fog of war could be optional - if player was in that city before or got a map - it looks like you made it now, if not - make fog to blackout map.

I don't know exactly what you mean.  The fog of war means that the player doesn't know where enemy is - that is critical to the game

>Full screen mode sticks window to main monitor, please add an option to select monitor. Windowed mode is not expandable, so it would be nice to make window expandable or having a text field to enter a custom window dimensions. 

That would be relatively easy to fix. Probably let the user select from a list of resolutions.

It might be installed in a place where it can't find it. 

Try and find where it's installed, then create a symlink

for instance, if it was installed in /usr/lib64

sudo ln -s /usr/lib64/libGLEW.so.2.1 /usr/lib/libGLEW.so

you could also try an uninstall and reinstall GLEW

You'll be happy to know the linux version has now been released

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The next version of Merc Tactics will fix the remaining outstanding graphics problems, so we can update the video. This is in preparation for the Steam release.

Namely, I have improved the character animations, so the guns don't intersect with walls, or other objects, which looked very bad.

Soldiers now run with their weapon resting on their shoulder if they are beside a wall.
Also, soldiers have a special pose, so the player can tell when they are in overwatch:

Also, I have improved the squad turn indicator at the top of screen:


There are also some feature improvements, namely the equip allies features has been improved and also I am going to re-balance the financial part of the game, so the player gets more money.

Mac version has now been released!

I don't know how much work would be involved. It's a long time since I used Linux . I will look into it anyway.

Finally, Google is showing a image in the featured snippet of my game. I am convinced now that the lack of the alt tag in the screenshots  is the problem.  The top banner has an alt tag with the name of the game, so that's the only thing that Google can pick up. Of course it has to crop the image, because the banner is too wide.

I investigated a bit more. I think the problem is that the screenshots have no title, alt tag and meaningless file names - that makes it very hard for google to figure out how to associate an image with the game. Also, the main image does not appear on the game page.

The bug with the two Nico's is puzzling. I can't even imagine how it can happen. Anyway, I glad you like the game

Does anyone know how to make the screen shot of your game appear in Google Featured Snippets ?

For the first version of my game it appeared, but then when I changed the screen shot it disappeared from the snippet

Well done. Yeah, the redo move comes in handy.

I am planning for the next big release to add new features to make the battles more interesting. Any ideas how to improve the game would be most welcome ;)

> main menu has new camp/load/save/quick/settings/about but i do not see exit  -

Yeah, that looks like a bug. You could try to deselect the full screen setting close the game, then select fullscreen again. That might fix the problem temporarily. Meanwhile, I will be releasing a new bug fixed version soon.


The second, problem with 2 Nicos - that should never happen! Where exactly did the second Nico come from? Is he fighting in your squad or for the enemy?

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There should be an option in the main menu "exit to windows". 

Unfortunately, if you are in a battle  the option is missing. That is a bug which I will fix in the next version (sorry)

Thanks ;)

That's great. You need to just wait till Ben Dabi attack ,or are attacked and try to join the battle. You gain reputation when help Ben Dabi win a battle - as long as there are some survivors.