Official: Engine Testing – 102.0-RC1

Due to several major performance issues in 101.0, a new version is planned soon-ish so here’s the first release candidate.
Your test games will help us make sure such issues won’t slip into 102.0.

Without further ado:

See the download page for how to get it.

If you find a bugs, please report to Mantis.
Please attach infolog.txt as file, if you crash!

Happy testing! :-)

Zero-K: Zero-K v1.4.3.0 to v1.4.3.3

The past week has seen nerfs to Warriors, drops, Warrior drops and now drops in general. Valkyrie may need some buffs to make it better in the midgame but we will solve that problem when we reach it. We also have the weapon shiny gadget by Beherith from BAR (with modifications). Here are the changes.



  • DPS 285 -> 265 [?]
  • Cost 210 -> 220 m [?]
  • Regen 40 -> 30 hp/s


  • Cost 80 -> 100 m
  • Altitude 80 -> 140 elmo

Valkyrie and Vindicator speeds are now more affected by the mass of the unit they are transporting[?].

  • Relatively heavy units are transported at 66% the speed that they used to be transported.
  • Lighter units are slower to transport than they used to be. In particular Warrior causes Valkyrie to slow to 75% speed where previously Valkyrie was not slowed at all.
  • Very light units are unaffected. This is relative to their transporter. For example Warrior still does not cause any slowdown for Vindicator because Vindicator is a beast.

Fixed overkill prevention for long ranged missile units.


Weapon fire is now shiny[?]. Better shader code and more shiny things will follow. If knows how to write shaders their help would be very welcome. The shiny is enabled for everyone because we would like to test a range of hardware to see whether it causes errors or too much performance loss.


  • Fixed endgame graph jaggedness, added some parameters.
  • Fixed debris of killed nanoframes not showing the owner.
  • Fixed Spectator Panels causing a LuaUI crash.
  • Fixed the resign message not showing if the player was the last on his team [?]
  • Fixed team names when two teams being filled with members of the same clan.
  • Fixed Commanders showing range circles for unequipped weapons.
  • Fixed idle constructors not showing as idle in the Quick Selection Bar after move commands.
  • Fixed Context Menu not showing Commander regeneration.
  • Fixed Commander wreckage using old names.
  • Fixed tooltips showing wrong Commander buildpower.

EvoRTS: Web Host server failure

Unfortunately our web hosting provider has suffered a file system failure resulting in a loss of tons of data. Thankfully I have pretty recent backups, but the database was damaged rather extensively and a lot of media (images for the most part) that I did not have backed up was lost. I’m working to restore the site. It may be a little while before it’s back to 100%. I’m sorry for the trouble.

The post Web Host server failure appeared first on Evolution RTS.

Zero-K: Zero-K v1.4.2.13 – Dynamic Commander Balance

The community has done great work over the last two weeks exploring the new and improved Warrior. This version has a nerf to Warrior which reduces the previous buff while retaining the unique parts of the warrior; regeneration and damage. We have begun the promised commander weapon design fix with an attempt to equalize their power levels and give each weapon a distinct purpose.

Other nice changes include a fix to the longstanding Slasher overkill prevention issue, reasonable team names and rally points for rearming bombers. Use of rally points should improve bomber turnaround.

In other news RUrankAdminikinz is working on a nice ZK themed Weblobby and the release of Spring 101.0 is looming. The new engine has some nice features but is hampered by ATI graphics errors. Access to ATI testing is stalling our ability to make ZK compatible.


Nerfs to Warrior as a partial reduction of the recent buff. The aim is to harden the counter by skirmishers and reduce overlap with the Zeus assault role.

  • Cost 200 -> 210 (old was 220)
  • Range 280 -> 270 (same as old)
  • Health 880 -> 820

Commander morphing receives a design pass. Most of the effort was applied to basic weapons.

  • Basic weapons are now balanced around 50 cost and have designed strengths and weaknesses[?].
  • Commanders can equip duplicates of basic weapons.
  • Manual fire weapon reload time increased to at least 25s to reduce their spam annoyance. Some buffs. Costs are normalized to 150.
  • Cheapened morph base cost by 50 to level 3 and 100 for higher levels.
  • Slightly cheaper drone modules.

Valkyrie can no longer transport Enforcer.

Fixed Slasher overkill prevention.

Djinn weight lowered:

  • cost 800 -> 750
  • health 2600 -> 2500

Artillery accuracy improved:

  • Hammer can no longer miss a Defender [?]
  • Pillager can no longer miss a Stinger [?]

Tactical AI:

  • Added tactical AI for Ravager.
  • More things skirmish Warrior (for example, Ravager).
  • Removed broken Scorcher behaviour[?].


Air Repair/Rearm Pad can now have rally points. Aircraft that leave an Air Repair/Rearm Pad or a Airplane Plant with an empty command queue will inherit the queue of their pad. This mirrors the behaviour of factory queues. Reef is unaffected.

Better team names:

  • instead of “team 0”, teams now have recognizable names, for example “Team North”, “GBC” or “Team Sprung” [?]
  • the game-over screen now tells spectators who won (in the above format; was just “game over” previously).

Other changes:

  • Line-move now shows dots for the projected unit positions. This is option is enabled by default for new and current players. We need to know whether it works for all graphics cards.
  • Loading progress bar is now more accurate.
  • Added a “show always” option for armor and build-priority state icons.

Changed defaults for new players:

  • Fight is now hotkeyed under A and Attack is under F. The commands are also renamed.
  • Engine info screen hotkey: ‘i’ -> ‘Ctrl+i’
  • LoS view toggle hotkey: ‘L’ -> ‘Ctrl+L’
  • Default command visibility: always shown for selected units, hold Shift for all units (previously was hold shift for selected units, no way to see all units).


  • The game can now result in a draw in two cases: everyone dies at the same time (eg. two opposing roaches blow each other), or all alive teams are dropped (eg. when the non-dropped team resigns after the other drops).
  • Wreckage, rocks, trees etc. no longer disappear without a trace when destroyed/crushed/reclaimed but make a small dirt poof instead.
  • Trainer comms default to HMG/radar at level 1 and ablative/regen at level 2.
  • CAI no longer avoids linking its fusion reactors.
  • Fix CAI having wrong idea about energy economy.

Zero-K: Zero-K v1.4.2.8

Warrior is primed to explode back onto the scene with a number of buffs aimed to bring it back into the meta. These changes were tested before release but that dose not stop them from being ridiculous. The purpose is not so much to balance Warrior, it is to see how powerful it can feel before it becomes too powerful. It has been overshadowed by Zeus for so long that it may as well have fallen off the roster. Angler and Hacksaw received more reserved buffs with a similar aim in mind.

In other news, Spring 101.0 is nearing release. This stable contains many compatibility changes with the new engine so, if there are no big dramas, we may move to that engine shortly.



  • Cost 220 › 200 m
  • Range 270 › 280 elmo
  • DPS 245 › 285
  • Aim speed 400 › 800 °/s
  • Sight 330 › 345 elmo
  • Added idle regeneration. 40/s after 5s.


  • Cost 200 › 180
  • Range 600 › 750


  • Damage 1050 › 1200 (now 1-shots Rapier and Vindicator and 2-shots Wyvern)

Lightning guns more accurate:

  • Commander LG: 2° › 1°
  • Bantha: 2° › 1.6°
  • Zeus: 2.4° › 1.8°
  • Scorpion: 1.8° › 1.4°


  • Starting resources back to 400 (accidentally became 500 last update).
  • Idle and combat regeneration obeys slow and disarm.
  • Puppy can now eat module shards.
  • Level 0 Commanders no longer transportable by Valkyrie.
  • Fixed level 2 Guardian and Engineer commanders lacking +5 innate regeneration.


  • Regeneration is shown on the tooltip healthbar. For units with quick regen, also the timer.; Fetid Marsh – v05; Quicksilver 1.1][?][/tooltip]
  • Post-game stats graph now shows reclaim and no longer shows useless stats.
  • Quick Selection Bar (aka Core Selector) and Economy Panel (ie. the resource bars) now have a toggle to hide when spectating.

Other Fixes

  • Added startbox configs to some maps. [tooltip=Altored Arctic; Claymore v2; Deserted Third v4
  • Commanders are now worth exactly as much XP as they cost.
  • Child units (drones, Wolverine mines) contribute to parent XP.
  • Fixed module wrecks being indestructible.
  • Fixed start position markers on boxless maps not showing the player name.
  • Misc GFX rendering fixes.

Zero-K: Zero-K v1.4.2.5 – Dynamic Commanders

The core of this release is the dynamic commanders system – commanders with customization ingame instead of pregame. Drone carriers received a nerf intended to make them worse at sustaining a battle when covered by AA, they will want to retreat and re-stock. This release took a while so there are also many miscellaneous fixes.


Commanders can now be configured during the game.

  • Pick the modules for each level upon upgrading your commander (with the cog command).
  • Use site profiles to store and name your favorite loadouts.
  • Decorations are also applied through the site. Ordinary unlocks will be removed.

We have finally removed the Strike and Battle commander models. The models were reasonable but unfortunately they were too close to OTA. The Arm Commander is the iconic face of OTA and Core is not far behind. The Strike chassis received a new model and the Siege and Battle chassis were merged into one.

The commander morph design received a shake-up in the process, some due to design changes and some for technical reasons. The changes are not balanced but they aim to be balanced eventually. Here are some changes:

  • Support -> Engineer (Support is too generic as a word, could be confusing).
  • Engineer and Recon can only equip one basic weapon. It makes sense as they only have one gun. They should be made powerful in other ways.
  • The weapons allowed for each chassis have changed. Some weapons have been removed or modified. There are some new weapons.
  • Some conversions have been removed, mostly the 0-choice ones (those that increase range).

A few experimental features are already possible with the new system. These includes:

  • Commanders have no upgrade limit (base cost increases though).
  • Base commanders can be built from Strider Hub (1000 metal, no economy).
  • Stackable drone modules.

This is just the initial implementation. Once this system is tested we hope to add more interesting features and balance, things not seen in the previous commander system. Each chassis should be able to fulfill a few roles so pregame RPS will not be as worrying as it was before.

Balance / Mechanics

  • Disarm no longer destroys wreckage and map features (trees, rocks etc).
  • Resurrecting now decloaks.
  • Resurrecting now costs 200% of the original energy cost (was 125%).
  • Jumping with jetpack [?] now decloaks.
  • Defender reload time obeys status effects [?]
  • Trident, Flail and Racketeer now home onto radar dots.
  • Reef:
  • time between starting a new drone: 3 › 5 s (can build 4 in parallel)
  • drone build time: 15 › 25 s
  • drone max wander range: 1600 › 1000 elmo
  • Funnelweb and Commander Companion Modules:
    • time between starting a new Firefly (light drone): 10 › 15 s
    • Firefly build time: 3 › 10 s
    • time between starting a new Viper (heavy drone): 20 › 25 s
    • Viper build time: 3 › 15 s
  • Quill less annoying to use through manoeuvrability improvements:
    • turn rate: 81 › 90 °/s
    • time from max speed to full stop: 1 › 0.1 s [?]
  • Tremor can damage itself with stray shots.
  • UI / Misc

    • LoS view is no longer enabled in the pregame setup.
    • Added time display to spectator panel.
    • Added Unit Shapes highlighting to units under the cursor[?] and inside a selection box.
    • Added option to Unit Shapes to show ally selections with each player’s colour while spectating.
    • Selection: renamed “DGun” reload timer to “Special”.
    • Added an option to hide command panel when spectating.
    • Improved Blastwing explosion effect.
    • Reduced Claw missile hit sound.


    • Fixed some cases where late spawning commanders spawned outside their start box.
    • Cloaker and shield jitter now disable during morph (these are effects high graphics settings).
    • Control groups are maintained through morph.
    • Nanoframes leave the correct debris.
    • Tidal generator wreckage has the correct tooltip.
    • Fixed Numpad Enter not working for chat.
    • Fixed a crash caused by resigning during “Wait or Win”.
    • Fixed spec panel crashing on AI games.
    • Fixed an UI crash when using build hotkeys with an Athena.
    • Unit selection shapes and unit outlines effects now respect depth.
    • Healthbars are no longer shown for dying units, EMP is drawn correctly.
    • Fixed music sometimes not playing while messing with the volume slider.
    • Most hovercrafts no longer create dust when cloaked (this is so they don’t give away their position).
    • Improvedstartbox rendering performance.
    • Teleportation noises are no longer audible in the fog of war.
    • Jumpers which die in mid air now have appropriate velocity for their wreck.
    • Morph no longer resets shield charge.
    • Crabe has minor model and animation improvements.

    Content creation

    • Startboxes exposed to Game Rules Params.
    • Skirmish AI can now ask whether a start position is valid.

    Game rules params for boxes:

    startbox_max_n -> highest box number (boxes are numbered from 0!) startbox_n_0 -> how many polygons in box #0 (polygons numbered from 1)
    startbox_polygon_0_1 -> how many vertices in polygon #1 of box #0 (vertices numbered from 1)
    startbox_polygon_x_0_1_2 -> X coordinate of vertex #2 in polygon #1 of box #0
    startbox_polygon_z_0_1_2 -> Z coordinate of vertex #2 in polygon #1 of box #0 startbox_recommended_startpos -> whether recommended startpositions are available (1 or 0)
    startpos_n_0 -> how many recommended start positions in box #0 (positions numbered from 1)
    startpos_x_0_1 -> X coordinate of recommended startpos #1 in box #0
    startpos_x_0_1 -> Z coordinate of recommended startpos #1 in box #0

    To have an AI ask about startpos validity of coordinates XXX/ZZZ (Y is irrelevant), send a Skirmish AI Message:
    ai_is_valid_startpos:XXX/ZZZand receive “0”/”1″ as the return value.

    Zero-K: Zero-K v1.3.12.1

    There are more balance changes here than in recent versions. Effectively we have a Cloaky and Hovercraft un-nerf with a small change to Scalpel. Units should be a bit smarter with the unit AI and target priority improvements, especially Scorcher. Visible but non-damaging ground napalm has been removed in the case of Dante and Pyro. The aim is to remove all misleading fire effects.


    Cloakybot has a reduction of the nerfs for some of its previously most powerful units.

    • Rocko: Health 350 › 390 (was 450)
    • Spectre: Reload time 18 › 17s (was 15s)

    For Hovercraft we have a small nerf to Scalpel and minor buffs to Dagger and Mace. The changes are mostly to missile physics to give units a bit more time to fight or flee.

    • Dagger:
    • Cost 85 › 80 m
    • Sight 500 › 560 elmo
  • Scalpel:
    • AoE radius 96 › 80 elmo
    • Unit turn rate 79 › 73 °/s
    • Missile homing 132 › 115 °/s
    • Missile velocity 200 › 180 elmo/s
    • Missile duration 3.5 › 3.1 s [?]
    • Horizontal angle of fire 43 › 66 °
  • Mace: Speed 63 › 66 elmo/s
  • Pyro death explosion now applies ground fire. This is to make its mechanics match the flame effect. Previously the explosion applied 21-30s of burning (315-450 damage) which tended to guarantee a kill against light raiders.

    • DPS: 20
    • Radius: 128 elmo [?]
    • Linger time: 13s
    • Burn time 25s › 2s [?]
    • Initial damage: 50 (unchanged)

    Duck is now slightly worse at avoiding consequences. The underwater Duck vs Duck game may also no longer be one of blindly running into each other.

    • Missile range 250 › 240 elmo
    • Torpedo range 150 › 120 elmo
    • Sonar 250 › 350 elmo

    Recluse has a buff to see what it takes to use Recluse:

    • Range 540 › 570 elmo
    • Sight 594 › 627 elmo [?]

    Funnelweb lost combat regeneration for consistency [?]

    Raised most units’ eye height by 10-20 elmos [?]

    Terraform now has its minimum thickness more strictly enforced. No more 1-wide walls around structures. Walling mexes and fusions is now slightly more expensive.

    General UI

    • COFC smooth mesh just affects scrolling again.
    • Build ETA has size and draw height menu options.
    • Menu option paths: renamed AutoGroup to Control Groups.
    • The interface for walling a structure with terraform (Ctrl + click) now gives a rectangle command[?].
    • The unit lock modoption now works on AI and accepts unit names as parameters.

    Unit AI

    Unit AI has been improved, mostly regarding targeting.
    “Ignore” means the units still automatically shoot the target, but will not stop to kill and instead move on if they are on Fight command and there are no better targets.

    • Spectre will now avoid all mobile ground units.
    • Puppy on Fight dodges better and closes in faster.
    • Scorcher will now move close to the target when on Fight command.
    • Units with slow projectiles will now disprefer shooting at fast units and will ignore them. [?]
    • Units are less inclined to shoot at Fleas and Darts [?].
    • Penetrator, Sniper and Racketeer disprefer LLT and Defender.
    • Airborne units no longer ignore Razors.
    • Crusader will now ignore gunships.
    • Armored units are now deprioritized correctly.


    XP has always been very unreliable as a measure of unit performance. This has been addressed. The rank of a unit now directly reflects how many times over a unit has paid for itself.

    • Rank 1 = 1x cost
    • Rank 2 = 2x cost
    • Rank 3 = 3x cost
    • Silver Star = 4x cost
    • Gold Star = 8x cost


    • Removed the last hit XP bonus. Only dealing damage gives XP now.
    • Rescaled XP gain so that it says exactly how many times the unit made cost. [?]
    • Changed nominal unit costs for a few unbuildable units to better reflect their worth. [?]
    • All multiplayer units now have XP worth equal to cost. [?]

    Content creation

    • Maps can now have less than 6 metal spots.
    • Custom AIs now select their own commanders. Ones that do not, are given Strike Trainer. [?]
    • healthbar labels for features [?] are now subject to localisation.


    • Fixed slow damage permanently increasing turn rate inertia.
    • Fixed Dante incendiary rockets using napalm visuals.
    • Fixed rank icons disappearing while spectating.

    Zero-K: Zero-K 1v1 Tournament December 12th 2015

    Owing to the unavailability of the normal tournament organisers, the 1v1 tournament for November hasn’t been run yet. Better late and under inexperienced management than never, right?

    The tournament will be run by Aquanim on Saturday 12th December at 10AM UTC.

    Signup list:

    Tournament format & rules:
    – Registration is open until 1 hour before the official start time of the tournament, at which time the bracket will be shuffled.
    – Double elimination
    – Random seeding
    – First map of each round is predetermined, the following maps in the winners bracket will be selected by the loser of the previous game from the featured 1v1 map pool.
    – All winners bracket games will be best of 3 (including finals). All losers bracket games will be best of 1 with the exception of the losers finals (bo3).

    It is possible to substitute for players who don’t show up. If you have signed up, make sure to show up on time. Those who fail to show up will likely be subbed out by 10:30AM UTC (half an hour after tournament start).

    The players coming first, second and third will receive special unique collectible awards to their player profile, and receive tournament points which will at the year’s end determine the year’s altogether best tournament player.

    The initial maps for each round will be chosen from the following pool (plus some if required) when I have a better idea of how many rounds are required:

    Isle of Grief 0.2
    Into Battle_v3
    Flooded Valley v2
    Iced Coffee v4.3

    The bracket can be seen at a link which will be added below.
    Sign up in the comments!

    Zero-K: Tourney players replaced with robots

    Due to lack of availability of all the organizers, the month’s tourney will be postponed until first week of December.

    While it would be possible to hold the human tournament this weekend, convening an adequate amount of human players with an announcement on Wednesday seems impossible.

    With that in mind, this Saturday will still hold a tournament, with players who are much easier to assemble: AI’s!

    The machines will duke it out round-robin BO3, ranked by win count. All ties will be resolved by additional games.

    The tourney will likely be hosted on SpringGrid operated by JPrankNapoleongajop in a massively parallelized fashion, and the replays will be published after the games are resolved in this case. If the grid is somehow not available, the games will be manually proceeded at 4x speed on Springie hosts.

    Maps for each game will be determined randomly by the tournament host device from this list:

    Red Comet
    Victoria Crater v2.1

    The initial participant list is as follows:
    Shard (as shipped with engine version 100.0)

    All these will be assembled in their latest available binary form (compiled linux64) and frozen at Friday, 27th November 2015, 23:59 UTC.

    Additional bots can be submitted before that time as well in compiled binary form or source, compilation of which will be attempted but not guaranteed.

    The only requirement is that the bots don’t use cheats.
    And thus, glory to the robots.