After the Storm 0.7.4 released, 0.8.0 on the horizon

It’s only been a week since version 0.7.3 of After the Storm came out. As I said some time ago, I’m not announcing minor releases in my blog anymore since they can get on occasion a little too noisy for my taste. However, today’s release, version 0.7.4, is special in a few ways.

I expect this to be the last release of the 0.7.x series unless something major comes up later. The next release should be version 0.8.0, scheduled for May 1st assuming everything goes the way I planned in the meantime. 0.8.0 will contain the first three scenarios of After the Storm: Final (otherwise known as Episode III).

It’s perfectly evident at this point that it won’t be possible to achieve the version 1.0 goals very soon, which is why I decided to go ahead with the development of the third and final episode of the campaign immediately and turn it into a 1.0 target as well.

However, the importance of version 0.7.4 goes a little further than this minor change of plans.

In order to allow a faster release cycle and quick deployment of critical bug fixes, I have split the add-on in two packages. The first, original package contains all resources except music files, which are now provided by a separate add-on creatively titled After the Storm Music in the Wesnoth 1.10 add-ons server. Since neither the server nor the 1.10 client appear to have a problem with it, both add-ons are mutually dependent; this should minimize the chances of people installing the music package without the campaign.

This design will allow faster uploads at my end, and faster downloads at the players’ end (when not using Xdelta, anyway). I expect the 0.8.x release cycle to be fairly long and lively, assuming artwork and plot development go as expected. Given the nature of the music add-on, odds are it won’t see a lot of updates in the future; at the very least, it won’t be updated as often as the approx. 4.6 MiB campaign proper. People who don’t play with music or sounds enabled, or who simply cannot afford the separate 12.3 MiB download are not required to install the add-on, although the campaign menu entries will include a small warning accordingly.

Current users of 0.7.3 and previous versions will be asked to install the music add-on when upgrading or installing After the Storm for the first time.

Because of the aforementioned splitting and some other internal changes, I decided to fast-track this update instead of holding it until 0.8.0. The more testers, the better.

The changelog for this version follows:

Version 0.7.4:
* Graphics:
* New or updated unit graphics: Shaxthal Warlord Nar-Hamoth
* Music:
* All current music tracks have been moved to a separate add-on,
imaginatively titled "AtS Music". This add-on is now an optional dependency
for those who can't afford downloading it or don't play with music enabled.
When absent, the AtS campaign menu entries for each episode will include a
notice stating so.
* Scenarios:
* E2S5 - The Eastern Front:
* Added a time-over dialog sequence.
* Added an additional dialog sequence focusing on a specific
player character.
* E2S6 - The Voyage Home:
* Added a time-over dialog sequence.
* E2S7 - Proximus:
* Added a time-over dialog sequence.
* E2S8 - And then there was Chaos:
* Fixed elves not getting the Loyal trait.
* E2S9 - New Hive:
* Fixed Shaxthal Worms changing colors when moving.
* Reduced starting gold.
* E2S10 - The Betrayal:
* Fixed multiple "invalid WML array index" warnings at the start.
* Reduced starting gold.
* E2S11 - A Final Confrontation:
* Made the glyph guardians a little more competent.
* Healing glyphs no longer render affected units unable to attack on the
same turn.
* Units:
* Balancing:
* Increased arcane damage resistance for most Shaxthal units from -50% to
* Decreased Demon Zephyr's movement cost on deep water terrains from 2 to 1.
* Decreased Demon Zephyr's movement cost on unwalkable terrains from 3 to 1.
* Reimplemented NPC bird behavior code in Lua.
* Renamed "Shaxthal Warlord" unit type to "Shaxthal Warlord Narhamoth";
this breaks old saved games of E1S9.1 (The Triad, part 1) during turns.