Player Housing is Radically Improved!

Jun 30, 2022

After last month’s Beta on the new player housing/supergroup base-builder, we took a survey to see what the SoH community would like to see next. Comments were overwhelmingly positive, and we received a lot of great ideas for improvements. So, we're implementing all of the most-requested changes.

1. Allow us to create a base layout from scratch, placing squares to make the floor plan we want to have.

The blank slate housing option is now live and working in the base-builder. A short video of the blank slate system is out today on YouTube and on Rumble. If you want to propose a better name than blank slate, tell us in the forums.

The video is sped up for your convenience, but you can now start out standing in space and create your own base with a layout of your own design, where each panel can be textured individually. There is an upper limit on the total number of pieces that can be placed, so currently one cannot create a base the size of Texas, but you can still do quite a bit.

“Hm… I could finish the walls and floor, but looking out into the void isn’t bad either…”

2. Edit without your character in the view.

Done. You can now edit your base with or without your character in view.

3. Have a view mode.

Done. You can now view your base without activating the object high-lights, with or without your character in view.

The previous edition always had your character in view. Now a button can get it out of the way. Object yellow highlights were always active on hover and popup the Object window. This can now be turned off.

4. Reduce crowding in the UI.

Almost done. Most of the UI will be relocated to a ribbon at the bottom of the page. The ribbon can also be resized and moved around the screen and made to disappear entirely.

All UI windows have been consolidated in a single Housing Panel ribbon, leaving a much clearer view.

5. Give us more control with placing textures and modifying the interior layout.

You can now place interior walls, resize them to be any height and width, and texture them in a cool new way. If you just want to add a wall and have it match the base walls, the new wall pattern will align with the wall pattern of the base walls by default. You can also add stairs and platforms. And we’re working on making it easier to highlight and precisely place objects.

Modular wall sections can be added, resized and match patterns on other walls, or not….

6. Allow us to enhance our characters in our bases prior to gameplay.

Almost done. You will be able to rez in the base, and to apply buffs there that last for a couple of hours. Buffing stations are now available to add to your base.

“So that’s what the new rez station looks like? I haven’t used one in decades.” – Ambassador

7. We want visitors to see how cool our bases are.

We are working on this now, and we hope to have something in place for July 22nd.

8. More props, please! Bigger ones, too!

There are a few furnishings to check out that will look good in large or small spaces, including fireplaces. You’ll see even more as we get closer launch, just like with clothes in the character creator.

“The water is very pretty, but I’m always nervous to read a good book in here. What if it gets wet?”

Of course, the items in this newsletter are not the only upgrades we’ve made since the Beta ended. Apart from bug-fixing, we’ve also been working hard to address such issues as indoor waterfalls, feature walls, and having more furniture to place. There are even some wood-burning fireplaces now, which is an ultimate luxury in space. We’re working down a list created from the surveys you submitted, so thanks again to all of you who shared your ideas! It’s been a big help.

“Ahhh, now this is the life.”

One of the interesting things about designing a base-builder in an MMO is how it compares to the base-builders of other MMORPGs. In our view, having more options and more creative flexibility without limits can eventually make the system more difficult to learn and less ap-proachable. We’re balancing a fun level of complexity and flexibility with ease of use. SoH player housing isn’t too complicated, and yet it provides a lot of design freedom. We hope this is perfect for players who want to follow their artistic vision without having to get a Doctorate in base-building. Let us know in the forums whether you think we hit the mark or not, and what we ought to do to improve, but you will see a lot of improvement to base-building in the next feature-Beta, which will start around July 22nd.

As always, we’ll be posting both on our website and on the forums about any new updates for Ship of Heroes. Remember to check up regularly, and don’t feel afraid to speak up! We love to hear from you, our audience.

Technical Notes

 

1.  The first housing Beta was a free event. It was open to the public from May 5th to May 8th. The second housing Beta will also be free and is expected to begin July 22nd. It will likely run longer than the last one. We’ll be showcasing all the improvements we made in response to players’ requests.

2.  We used Steam for the first time for the first player housing Beta. We did not receive a single complaint about the game downloading process from Steam. This is a dog-that-didn’t-bark moment – we plan to keep Steam for all future events, since no one reported any problems.

3.  Everything “Housing” is now controlled from the single Housing Panel ribbon. Additional windows, such as color wheels, pop up only when needed. Locating the ribbon at the top or bottom of the window now leaves most of the screen to view the space. Alt+U makes it disappear completely from view, for when you want to take a cinematic screenshot.

4.  The Game UI is hidden by default inside housing; it can be displayed if needed at the click of a button on the Housing Panel ribbon.

5.  Control icons in the ribbon now clearly display editing commands.

6.  The Store panel will take a moment to load the first time you access it. Please be patient.

7.  We’ve added many new props, including a couple of fireplaces, rez and buffing stations, more furniture, and other items.

8.  We’re addressing an issue with some ISPs that blocked some of the emails containing Beta keys last time. We’re trying to prevent this from re-occurring.

9.  In the new blank slate housing option, the player can decide everything, right down to the placement of floors, walls, and ceilings, and select texture and colors block-by-block.

“It was hard work crumpling this huge rug all by myself!” – a proud housecat

More on this Subject

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Our Player Housing Beta will take place from May 5th to May 8th 2022. This is our 8th feature Beta which has been open to the public. Beta testers will be able to create or reuse a character, roam Apotheosis City and create Player Housing. The event is free, and registration is open. Don’t miss it! We look forward to your feedback to guide further development of Player Housing.

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