All posts by jooki

Green Game Jam 2022

In the first half of June 2022 we participated in the Green Gam Jam organized by the UN initiative Playing 4 the Planet. Together with 42 partly big international game studios we tried to do our bit for reforestation and sustaining the world’s forests and raise players awareness for this issue. This is about all we achieved even though we did end up with slightly different solutions for the activation than originally planned.

…and who would have guessed it, we won with our tree planting campaign in the category forests.

Our first participation in this game jam among big studios was very exciting and accordingly let us come up with a very ambitious plan. One of four items we had in our activation plan was releasing a new free spin-off version of Imagine Earth on Steam. Unfortunately, the release of a whole new product on Steam turned out to be not so quickly feasible in terms of scheduling and might not even have been most effective activation strategy.

Thanks for the kind words, but they forgot to say how much fun the game is to play ; )

I still like the idea but as a 2 man studio have to concentrate first on finishing DLC and Playstation version. So we decided to alter the free version we already had on Steam – The demo of Imagine Earth which also offers a fully playable planet and since the Green Game Jam has an end screen where you can now choose to buy the soundtrack or the green planet bundle to plant trees with the proceeds. These donation options are now in the game to stay.

Activation Campaign Achievements

  • We integrated a new Steam achievement – Players who plant twenty forests on one planet in the game from now on plant one tree in the real world.
  • We organized a custom Steam Sale Event during the campaign time to raise awareness for game and demo with a discount and offered to plant ten trees for every copy sold.
  • You can buy the official soundtrack and all proceeds will also donated to Eden Reforestation.
  • On top of this we parallel participated in the Ocean Day Steam Sale in June 5-8 and donated another 10% of net income to Whales and Dolphins Conservation.
Thanks for voting for us in the GGJ player’s choice award

All this enabled us to plant 14,920 trees between 6/3-17 with our partner Eden Reforestation Project. A result that wasn’t possible without your help. As we started to sell the soundtrack for charity shortly after the release in May last year we could already plant a total of 48,940 trees. We’re actually really proud.

1.8 – Wildlife Update

Welcome to update 1.8, we have pushed some necessary optimizations in between.

At the very bottom, at the end of this update we have again mapped the current position on the complete roadmap, which should still lead us to the big 2.0 Open Space DLC later this year.

Whale Watching
Whales are the giants of the seas and from now on you will also find them on the worlds in Imagine Earth. This is in line with our desire to bring more life to the worlds of Imagine Earth. However, the population is decreasing due to water pollution, oil spills and fishing. Animals resp. biodiversity are of great importance to the biosphere. In the future this will also be the case in our environmental simulation and more species will follow to populate the seas.

Best Expert Game at the German Game AwardsGeoff Keighley himself presented us with the German Computer Game Award.

It was with great pleasure that we received the official award for “The Best Expert Game” of Germany 2022 a month ago. This award was presented by none other than Geoff Keighley, the internationally known host and producer “The Game Awards” And the “Opening Night Live” show of Gamescom.

New rule for space traders
Space traders can now be turned off in competitive and endless games. This change is to allow games that have a more realistic scenario. Without Gaia forces and Space Invaders, we have a constellation that largely dispenses with science fiction elements and is technologically comparable to the post-industrial age on Earth. This makes the plot framework and the confrontation with climate change more plausible and authentic. At least as an option, we felt it was important to offer this gameplay experience to focus on Imagine Earth’s core theme.

The Forester Achievement
There is a new achievement in Imagine Earth on Steam that you unlock when you plant more than 20 forests on a planet. We track how many players earn this achievement and plant a tree for each one. This activation is part of an initiative called Green Game Jam, which seeks to have an impact on the world through actions in games.

The strategic view.

The victory points panel in competitive mode revealed a lot of interesting information about the status of the other corporations and especially about your own. This view is now available without victory points in endless play.

Bookmarks
The display of which merchants just landed in which of your cities is back, some of you have sorely missed it. In addition to this the functionality to define your own bookmarks by keeping a number key pressed is back.

Improvements & fixes

  • The system voice now also warns you when there is a low supply of food, goods or energy.
  • Intact asteroids are not automatically harvested.
  • Cannons and shield upgrades are not available if you have disabled asteroids and comets
  • Trade panel no longer closes accidentally
  • Biome brush – You can also delete biomes when pressing Ctrl.
  • We made the light around the cursor brighter so you can see more on the downside of the planet.
  • In the tutorial, we are now making sure you don’t miss control instructions
  • Improved mouse control in the resource panel, you can no longer accidentally hover over the panel to click on the planet.

1.7 – Full Control – UI Update

Dear planet managers, we really struggled a bit to be able to offer you this hyper-speed optimization of the global management system! The interface is the most annoying part of the game production. Let’s hope that the latest interface optimizations will leave nothing to be desired!

Control optimization

Fast and universal switching between temples, workshops, cities, factions and merchants is finally possible and revolutionizes the navigation in our game.

You can now trade and do diplomacy with all sorts of partners through the interface without having to jump to you with the camera. This way, you are not always pulled out of the local action on the planet because of crafting or item acquisition, and you always keep track of what’s going on.

Takeover through stock trading

A separate stock panel right at the frasction panel, where you can see all the information about a company’s cities and directly buy shares and take over cities. A big button that flashes visibly and visualizes the takeover process.

We built a large popup that solemnly announces that you have successfully taken over a city. And also indicates if you have captured equipment in the process, which means you have taken certain items from the enemy.

We also restructured the stock trading panel so that the player always automatically starts at himself and can more quickly throw some shares on the market to get new capital.

Setup optimizations

The difficulty button has been redesigned to look the same in the setup for new rounds of competitive and endless play as the other options or tabs in the setup menu. The start button has been enlarged.

Also, you can now turn off Gaia Forces and Asteroids in the game for a more realistic gameplay experience that is mainly about global warming and environmental issues rather than futuristic sci-fi elements.

Fossil buildings

Fossil power plants can now drill and exploit deposits in adjacent fields. This keeps them productive longer and means they need to be moved less often.

In exchange, fossil production buildings have again received a malus. It no longer looks in the game as if there would be no problem at all if a certain resource is not available.

This is especially important in the context of the core message of the game. Fossil buildings that just keep on working, that too is unrealistic.

The new taskbar

The taskbar has been made narrower. Options like Research and Technology, which are already positioned in the top left of the interface, are no longer duplicated there.

Gamepad layout

We didn’t spare ourselves and once again tweaked the configuration of the controls. There is a new control pad ring menu with which you can control many things in the game even faster than with a mouse.

In all ring menus, the D-pad or directional pad can now be used to navigate particularly quickly and directly, select a build option or item.

Jumping to an event or an alarm. Has not worked for a while. Is now, however, on the left stick.

Supply capsules

Had literally disappeared from the game. On medium setting, such a vehicle now lands again every 5-10 minutes.

Navigation

We cleaned up the navigation so that too many enemy cities are no longer displayed around the globe at once.

Optimizations

  • In the field ring, the updates of houses, are now displayed on the right and thus it is no longer too long on the left, so that information sometimes hangs pointlessly out of the screen.
  • The buttons for diplomacy no longer show all the time, all the details that play a role there. This makes the user interface much narrower.
  • Auto-harvesting now also works for temple ruins from which artifacts are harvested.
  • When a building ring has a panel open on the left, the building info is displayed on the right.
  • In the colony rating screen you can now select the different factions.
  • Citys Panel – Merchants, Workshops and Temples now only displayed at cities when hovering.

Bugs

  • We have 5 bugs that have been sent to us via Discord.
  • Factions often built too many towers next to each other and also liked to place City Centers in clusters or in a pile.
  • The controls in the build menu were a bit disjointed.
  • The build menu can now stay open with the gamepad, so you can always see your list of strategic items.
  • In the Weekly Challenge, the gamepad cursor disappeared until you pressed something.
  • “Show Influences” in the Technology panel was not selectable with gamepad.

Best Expert Game 2022

We are grateful and happy about the recognition of Imagine Earth as Best Expert Game at Deutscher Computerspielpreis 2022!

Laudator Geoff Keighley , producer and host of
The Game Awards , digitally handed over the award to Martin and me. Thanks so much to the jury for these ususpected honors. The adress by the well known personality was the cherry on top of the unsuspected honors for our 14+ years lasting strategy game project about the climate crisis.

Live on stage Uke Bosse was hosting theevent in a quite charming and relaxed way and as he handed over the mic we used the occasion on stage to thank over 43.000 supporters who backed the project and made the development independent for over seven years in Early Access on Steam.

But more over we have to direct our thanks to a few folks in person. Imagine Earth wouldn’t be released yet without the amazing work by Rico Posienka and Alexander Leps for gamedesign and coding, Tilo Alpermann and Zevik Perry for soundtrack composition and Marko Fiedler for the new character illustrations.

Roadmap to Open Space DLC

Greetings, world builders! Recently I had a particularly nice task on the table, but it also made me a little nervous. To finally give you a complete vision of what we want to accomplish next in the evolution of Imagine Earth. You can see the product here, a visually appealing roadmap to the Open Space DLC, which we will finalize by the middle of this year. Many of the game elements, scripts and objects are already created, we often just have to carefully put all the pieces together.

The picture above shows the approximate set of features that the following updates and DLC will contain. We will go into more detail when the time comes.

Here’s what’s happening right now. We are very euphoric about how much better navigating the planet and building your global colonies will work with this fine tuning.

Here I have summarized what we have achieved since the release last year. This graphical reappraisal of the events somehow did me good.

All the achievements we made last year before the big final release would not have been possible without the funding we received at that time and your years of support in Early Access. However, we also learned a lot and were not able to realize some things, which will now be rounded out with the DLC, just as we always wanted to complete the game.

Look forward to when I finish the project story soon. In this entertaining style, it will offer incredible insights into the past and how this project started 14 years ago as a concept of some students.

Thank you for your interest, please share your ideas and thoughts. What have you always wished for Imagine Earth? Best regards, Jens & Martin

1.6 – Crafting & Generator

Greetings, dear world-builders!

While we are already working on the next big thing for Imagine Earth we have worked on a lot of usability, balancing and performance improvements and decided that this is worth being released in a dedicated update.

Deferred Rendering & Motion Blur

Switching to Deferred Rendering has made our Imagine Earth 10% faster right off the bat while at the same time allowing us to show more individual light sources on the planet.

Motion Blur makes the planet’s rotation look smoother, especially when running a system with fewer frames.

Items & Crafting

We have built a new crafting panel, that automatically buys the needed resources as soon as not all components to create items are available.
While working on this we have also balanced which resources are needed for crafting and reduced what is needed for most of the items.
Honey Pots, which can be used to attract Xrathul, have been optimized in their operation, especially in the probability with which they lead to Xrathul spaceships arriving on your planet.

Planet Generator Balancing

To get better and play worthy planets we had to diligently tweak the generator. In making adjustments, we tried to achieve as even a distribution of field types and rare resources as possible, while also providing local hotspots that make good starting places for your colony. Also we increased the number of mountains and rocks on the planets and placed more Gaian ruins so that there are more artifacts in the game. Under these circumstances it also made sense to regenerate the Weekly Challenge planets. They are still based on the same planet, but the distribution of resources is a bit different now.

Bugs & Fixes

  • Dropped Dynamic Resolution
  • Removed graphics setting for anti aliasing, because only marginal differences can be seen here based on the rendering techniques of the Unity engine we are using
  • Fixed configuration display of polar ice
  • Fixed blurred intro
  • Workshop Planets File System Windows 7 bug
  • Fixed the description of the frontier station
  • Navigation: Show only one city of each other faction
  • World congress is no longer happening during game over
  • When productivity is low because of plague, show the corresponding plague icon

1.5 – Highscore League 2022

We hope you started the new year safe and sound and are fit for the challenges it brings, because it will definitely not be boring. The Corona virus keeps the world in suspense and mankind has its trouble to organize itself sensibly against it. After that, the even more colossal challenge of climate change is just waiting to be targeted again. But also in the virtual world, in Imagine Earth, new challenges await you in the new year.

Compete now in Weekly Challenges, Quarterly Seasons and Annual Rankings. Effective immediately, we have unlocked the official 2022 league. In addition, we would like to celebrate the official top 10 annual winners of the 2021 league. We sincerely congratulate all the participants for enrolling in the Imagine Earth’s internal leaderboards forever.

The Greatest Terraformers of 2021

1st place – Franci0 – 1,457,784
2nd place – KiBou – 1,400,492
3rd place – Wingyl – 1,393,397
4th place – craig.akitt – 933,881
5th place – Critical Floof – 913,485
6th place – Artiss – 863,621
7th place – Roderick – 663,128
8th place – RainbowDesign – 532,542
9th place – missladykayura – 473,274
10th place – martin – 457,000

So in 2022, you’ll be competing with other planet managers not only for overall victory in weekly high scores, but also for the lead in quarterly seasons and the overall year-round victory. By the way, we’ll be playing the weekly missions ourselves for testing purposes, so you’ll have the pleasure of competing against the developers themselves, look for Martin and Jooki in the highscore. If that’s not a special challenge.

Rating optimization
We have also adjusted the rating of the game rounds. It remains exciting, you still can’t save and load, but you don’t have to reach the first place in the competition anymore and the achieved colony rating will be entered into the highscore, so it’s worth the work in any case. Of course you can repeat the challenge the whole week to optimize your score by ceiling, have fun!

Colony rating

We have given the calculation of the value of your global space colony a new balancing. If you sell all your shares, you will no longer end up with a high score of zero, the impact has been reduced to 50%. The quality of life in your colony plays a bigger role, its impact has been increased from 12.5 to 20%.

Asteroids, moons and lens flare

Graphically, Imagine Earth has also stepped up its game again in this release. There are a lot of visual effects to admire. Moons and meteors orbit your worlds and cast gigantic shadows, in broad daylight they darken the landscape.
When you zoom in very close to the planet, the perspective rotates so you’re not always looking at the action from above. Also, the atmosphere on the horizon becomes dense and blurry.

Graphic options

You can now set exactly a target frame rate to better define how much gameplay will hit you on the graphics card.

Automated mining processes

The harvesting drones of the warehouses now start mining valuable resources fully automatically. You now have to disable this instead of activating it individually as before. Simply convenient, we think. This way the warehouses fill up by themselves with valuable resources, which are urgently needed for the production of important equipment.

Landing zone locked

In the future, you won’t be able to accidentally park your landing capsule right next to another civilization, creating a non-competitive launch position for both parties.

Fishing grounds and oil wells
So far, procedurally generated planets, have almost no fishing grounds and oil wells. Sea grass has a higher positive impact on fishing and it has also become more productive in principle. Thus, in the future, the sea will be of higher strategic importance as a place of expansion and a source of food.

UI and control improvements

  • Fields where the temperatures are just too hot to grow food well are no longer shown as particularly fertile.
  • The display of your cities, top right, is no longer packed with loud icons for bad moods. That was just confusing.
  • Tooltips and info in the sales and manufacturing panel no longer overlay the menus, but are displayed outside.
  • We reduced the planetary view in menus and overview also reduced the superfluously large distance to which the planet is zoomed out.
  • When opening panels like the one for planetary overview or research, the planet in the background is no longer zoomed out.
  • Font size on various buttons in the game optimized.
  • Tower is upgraded again when you level it up.
  • Nitro pumpkin seeds are now also offered by the trader.

Bugfixes

  • Game pauses in menus decently again – For example, you could just wait in the win dialog until you lost again.
  • Intro skipping can be defined in the config file again.
  • UI-Flickr glitch in hyperspace between galaxies is fixed.
  • The nice melting of the snow when you turn on the thermo-generator is back.
  • In the Biron faction, some of the dialogs in the voice output are no longer mixed up. It makes more sense to talk to them now ;D

Thanks for reading all this and staying excited about the developments of Imagine Earth! Jens & Martin

Update 1.4 – Weekly Challenges

Hey Space Cowboys,

It’s been a few weeks since we last updated anything. Time for a sign of life from the Imagine Earth Universe.

Weekly Challenge – New Game Mode

In this brand new mode, you will receive a new mission every Monday. This colonization mission has the highest priority and must be completed by Sunday. The objective is to obtain the sole management license for a planet in a competitive process. It is advisable to familiarize yourself with the planet’s conditions and opponents beforehand by checking the info panel. Loading or saving is not possible in the global competition. Measure yourself against other colonists in weekly high scores and quarterly or yearly seasons.

Beat the developers 2021

Quarterly or annual seasons officially start at the turn of the year. But you can still win the title for 2021 by successfully completing the last 5 missions, and Martin and I will also play the weekly challenge. Let’s see who comes out on top in the leaderboard!
Of course we have more ideas, soon the weekly missions will get five objectives to gain additional victory points and we want to generate certain events that will make the gameplay more varied and fun. We also rely on your experience and feedback to figure out what could make this competition more exciting for everyone.

New storage system

It’s only a small button, but it’s strategically important! Now, in the warehouse panel, with another click on the “Automatically purchase” button, you can not only have the quantity purchased for which warehouse space has been reserved. With automatically fill, resources are purchased until all storage space is full. This makes scenarios possible where the supply of the population with a resource is completely controlled by the purchase. This is a possible strategy to save the construction of a lot of infrastructure.

New mountains the world needs

We have added a new set of big and small mountains that will be used on planets with the Frozen, Swamp and Barren themes to provide even more visual variety in our universe. I don’t really need any further words, just have a look.

Ambient Sound System Worldwide

Our world sounds system is finally finished. Now you can hear the birds chirping in the forest or the traffic in cities when you run your camera over them. Enjoy the chirping of crickets in the desert and the whistling of the wind in mountains or the gentle roar of the sea. It’s not entirely new but there were about half the ambient sounds in the game and the volume control, now lets the sound come in smoothly and overlap well.

AI factions more sensitive to climate change

Balancing – AI behavior in case of Global Warming is adjusted, factions are now also more sensitive to climate change. AI also now mines rocks only when there are no valuable resources left.

Control optimization

You can now prioritize resource mining even when the reservoir is full and redirect your drone to it.

Item display

The number of available items is now displayed in the inventory in a decidedly snappier way.

Steam Awards nomination

Hey, why don’t you nominate Image Earth for the Labor of Love Award? After seven years in Early Access, you’d think it would do our little two man team some good 😉

Fixed Now

  • Editor – Planets that are opened in the editor will now start with the correct amount of tech licenses.
  • Editor – Forests that get under water when terraforming, i.e. lowering terrain, finally die completely and disappear. Previously, tree stumps were still visible, and removing them from entire continents is simply annoying.
  • Editor – The saved but not loaded settings for selected factions and more.
  • UI – The exchange of upgrades is no longer done via the building list, this functionally clashed with the option to activate all upgrades at once.
  • UI – New subtitles in all menu screens, so you always know which game mode you are in.
    [UI – The order of the factions in the score panel in the bottom right corner of the screen changes on the fly during the game.
  • Sound – Too many repeated warnings when attacked by Xrathul and pirates, for example.
    [UI – The highscore screen has been extensively reworked.
  • Graphics – The normal textures of the fossil fields is corrected, never looked nicer.
  • Graphics – The main menu now fades in from black when flying towards the planet at the beginning.
  • Graphic – In the meantime all planets had rings like Saturn.
  • Graphics – In cutscenes the camera perspective is no longer distorted.
  • UI – The slider for how much fossil resources are distributed on a planet is functional again.
  • UI – The buttons in the game error dialog now work reliably again.
  • UI – Game over message and completion screen still made it possible to interact with some ingame menus even though the game was over and lost.
  • Bugs – So far there was a phenomenon of unordered factions appearing on the planet, more than you defined at the beginning of the game round.
  • UI – 4 display bugs fixed.
  • UI – The population counter in the planet info panel works again.
  • Error fixed – NodeInstance.FindNode ArrayTypeMismatchException
  • Error fixed – PlanetGraphics.UpdateUnitIcons NullReferenceException

Warm regards, Jens & Martin


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Update 1.3 – Czech Version

Honored guild of planet managers,

our monthly update is out, this time mainly fine tunings and fixes. But at the end there’s a preview of the next update with the new Daily Missions game mode. We are always amazed ourselves what can go wrong in a global simulation and where the devil hides in the details. Anyway, the bugs are also getting more and more bizarre and today’s cleanup post is an amusing collection of such occurrences.

A bit of a gut-wrenching September update comes because we had a lot of bureaucratic stuff to do that kept us from generating cool new features. I had to write a colossal final report for the German federal grant that allowed us to stay independent until version 1.0, and porting the Playstation version is keeping Martin busy with some pitfalls longer than he imagined. All the more we’re both looking forward to getting back to our core business and just building fancy new stuff and DLC for Imagine Earth and you, respectively. Soon we’ll be sharing with the world a roadmap of what’s in store for you in the galaxies of our game world. As always, thank you for your sustained interest in our climate crisis simulator project and the obligatory request to support us with a review if you haven’t already. Nothing helps Indie Studios on Steam better than this support, except of course your personal feedback on the latest update, the balancing in the current game and what other wishes remain unfulfilled. But now let’s get down to the nitty gritty. Have fun with it, Jens & Martin

Czech translation

First of all, we would like to announce that Imagine Earth is now also translated into Czech! We wish all Czech players a lot of fun with the new version that was created by Jan Balek of Balek Localization.

The World Congress

Unfortunately, the central diplomatic instance for all global factions was no longer accessible to players after successfully completing missions and competitions. The NPCs then blithely discussed tax increases and funding measures among themselves, while the humanoid player was left out in the cold and faced with a fait accompli. And on top of that, the World Congress featured the wrong representatives of their own faction, apparently the characters from past games. All history now, of course.

AI advanced training in cleverness

The AI in Imagine Earth once again behaves a bit more logically in this update. NPC factions now actively use research licenses. Also, AIs now only mine rocks when there are no other valuable resources, which previously slowed them down mightily.
In addition, small changes to priorities have resulted in AI corporations no longer planting trees, and as soon as reforestation became necessary due to climate change, they planted exactly the most inappropriate type of tree in each of the eight different biomes on the planets. This seemingly tiny inconsistency may have led to the fact that in the case of an impending climate collapse, exactly nothing was done to counteract the catastrophe. Which let the economic strategy of the companies turn out rather kamikaze moderately.

Apply All Tool

If you hold down the Alt key during the game you can now install all upgrades of one type on all applicable buildings at the same time again. This is exactly how it works with tools, all fields that could use a cleanup will be cleaned in one go, or all buildings that need a repair will be repaired.

The building list

A must-have management feature for several updates once the colony reaches a global scale. This menu has now received a functional update, the header display has finally been polished in layout and the button that allows you to repair, clean or mine all affected buildings resources deactivates when no such operations are needed or all have been activated.
Also, we disabled replaceable upgrades from showing as active in this panel. Because it was easy to accidentally swap when you thought there was still something to optimize there.

Optimization for world editor

A particularly perfidious bug had crept into the editor. Although the editor saved the values for victory points and player factions properly, it did not load them itself. So that one then accidentally saved changed conditions. And because of this, the player faction was often left undefined, whereupon the game system simply picked one at random and simply let another unwanted faction land on the planet.

Taking over towers with the hacker kit

Lately, sometimes enemy towers wouldn’t let me take them over with hacking tools. This strange bug in the game was also hard to identify, as it only occurred if you had previously loaded a game. It was similar with the planetary shield of the Great Pyramids, until today.

System voice warnings

These helpful announcements have piled up to 3-4 times announcing pirates, storms, Xrathul and other disasters. What was actually important, strategic information thus became outright scare tactics.

Crash Fixes

Finding the remaining occasions for crashes in the game is getting more and more difficult and tricky, all the more heartfelt thanks to all of you who report them to us so diligently. The following rare error messages are now a thing of the past: “NullReference in UpdateValue”, “NullReference in UpdateTerritories” and “NullReferenceException in DroneManager.Update”.

Outlook into the next update: Daily Missions

Many of you have asked for the game to offer more long-lasting challenges. That’s why we will work on a new game mode next, which I would name with the working title “Daily Missions”. Players will then be able to colonize a new procedurally generated planet every day where they will have to compete against other corporations. This planetary conquest mission can then only be played for one day to create a high leaderboard ranking. For this, an online league is created in which one can gain the high score lead on a weekly, monthly or even yearly basis.

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Update 1.2 – Mini campaign

Dear all, we have been working on improvements, fine tuning and bug fixes for quite a while now. This is the basis for us to offer innovative features for Imagine Earth again from now on! We are very excited about this and hope you are too. If you scroll down to the bottom of the post, you will have the opportunity to name your own planet name in the game.

We are always looking to lower the barriers to entry into the game and gather your feedback. The most common criticism is the chattiness of characters, especially that they seem to explain too many details about buildings and tools to players, interrupting the flow of the game. This is also addressed in this update. The player can consciously choose his difficulty level at the beginning of the campaign and also determine the story mode.

Minimalist Story Mode

Now you can choose which difficulty level you want to play at the beginning of the campaign, and we’ve included a reduced story mode that allows you to experience the campaign exclusively with the dialogs relevant to the story.

Building Shader

We have added more contrast to the rendering of buildings and forests. This should make them look more vivid, stand out better against the terrain, and give them more intense color depth and shadows. To do this, we turned up the Ambient Occlusion and made it dependent on the time of day and added an exception for metallic surfaces. Sunlight was made a bit stronger overall and more Exposure was added to the night side. Well, you never think what a well-rounded look causes for work.

New vegetation

There is a new, third vegetation in two of the planet themes. Along with the terran forest and the mushroom forest, it is something between deciduous and flower forest. It is rather slightly alien and exotic. There is not much more to say about it, you just have to see it up close.

Balance of energy production

To some players it seemed as if Imagine Earth was virtually trying to coerce them into using renewable energy sources, yet our goal is to represent global warming authentically and keep all avenues open to the player. In fact, the fossil sources in the game were disproportionately unproductive. Now they produce more, but also the deposits in the earth last longer and allow full productivity until the failure of the unit. After all, the main problem in today’s world situation on Planet Earth is not that coal and gas are all going, but that we can’t burn any more of them without driving global warming to dangerous levels.

Your opinion counts


At this point I’d like to weave in a personal note from the development department. Myself and Martin have been working on this game passionately and dedicated for many years, but currently every update has the stale aftertaste that with every improvement we somehow only create new demands. Some people don’t seem to realize that Imagine Earth is an indie game and already has a lot of features under the hood. If you like it, help us with your feedback and write a review, there is nothing that helps the project more.

Rouno’s optimizations

There is now a lower start and end goal for population growth in this mission so the challenge is not too demotivating. You can now no longer form an alliance with Joe Dectow, and he no longer builds department stores almost exclusively. The landing permit you get after the challenge can now only be used to build up the destroyed colony, which prevents a potential dismantling of the whole colony. All alien NPCs now have greetings out again when you visit their camps, cities or ships. Natives respond more directly to donations.

Uprisings and pandemics limited


We have introduced a limit on negative events, while the emergence of riots in the colony illustrates a dangerous undersupply of the population or the spread of diseases makes too high pollution noticeable, these and similar events should not dominate the gameplay and make it annoying.

Frozen worlds

There is no longer snow on active colony buildings. This doesn’t look quite as great as a completely snow-covered cities, but it’s worth its weight in gold for building recognizability.

World Editor


This goes out to everyone who has already built their own planets with our terraforming editor and shared them via Steamworks. The editor has received a new briefing tab in the setup. In the future, when you create or update new planets, you will be able to write an introduction, mission description or story that the player will see first when downloading and playing the planet via Steamworks. So far you could already upload a script for planets, but the menu structure in Competition and Freeplay could not display it yet.

Modding preview


The briefing is the first step. Soon you will be able to add your own mission objectives, events and dialogs to this script, use characters from the game as voice actors and possibly create your own characters as well as make buildings. And ultimately combine the planets into a campaign galaxy. This will be great, we just have to ask for some patience for this feature….

AI optimization


We also fixed a funny bug: if the planet creator didn’t specify their own faction, the game would assign them an AI faction, which would then blithely mess with players. We’ve also fixed some of the AI’s biggest quirks.

  • AI was prevented from actively defending against attackers with items through repairs.
  • AI now builds fewer special districts and more normal ones.
  • AI now builds its City Centers not so often next to each other.

Improved controls


We made small many control improvements and user interface optimizations, as many newbies were still having trouble getting to grips with managing entire planets.

Improvements

  • You can finally blast away giant mountains, just needs lots of ideon bombs and explosives.
  • Laser cannons now let asteroids with precious metals through, if no house is damaged by them.
  • We have been able to reduce the memory requirements per frame by at least half. Some out of memory problems should be history.
  • We optimized the design of the faction and trade menus and threw out unnecessary buttons. Especially important for gamepad control.
    [We have reduced the size of the fossil fields so that you can see more of the landscape.
    [When you log in the Achievements will be reassigned.
  • The icon selector was lost for a short time and is now back so you can better distinguish whether you are activating a building’s option ring or a recommended quick action.
  • Various improvements to the Tuto mission.
  • Mining drones were too high over forests
  • Supply pods are closed when they have been emptied.
  • Midras speaker has been widened so it is no longer cut off.
  • The calculation of deep ocean fields has been corrected.
  • Reduced repair speed on uplink and similar units.
  • Increased probability that a volcano erupted by Gaia force field will hit its target.
  • Removed the player’s faction indicator in the faction panel from Campaign and Endless because it is only interesting for competitions.
    [Hacking Tools – the radius in which you can use them has been increased and is now visualized.
  • When too many small lights were in view due to drone processes, light irritation occurred. Hopefully we have solved this satisfactorily now.
  • Empty models are no longer incorporated.

Soundtrack sales in this bundle will be donated to plant trees.

Join us on Discord for regular updates on ongoing development and to share your thoughts and ideas.

Fixes

  • Forest: Powers overlapped with deletion
  • Intro was not played
  • Field markers overlapped buildings
  • Jungle Planet sometimes had bald spots
  • Forest power did not show Gaia particle effect on target field
  • Building menu: Selector was out of place
  • Faction Speaker and Trader sometimes had truncated statements
  • City shows radius incorrectly
  • Sometimes placing did not work
  • SaveEditorPlanet Illegal characters in path
  • ArgumentException TradingOffer
  • ArrayTypeMismatchException UpdateFactionAndLiftMeshInstance
  • NullReferenceException Producer.GetInfluence
  • CityCenter.Main: Could not find node ‘Ufo’
  • “.. does not exist in …” – Unity/Xbox IL2CPP strange problem with string constants
  • Crash: NullReferenceException CombinedString.Append ToolActionButtonRenderer.GetCaption
    [Crash: NullReferenceException Producer.GetInfluence
  • Crash; at string_concat
  • Crash in ResxFileResourceManager_GetString
  • Workshop: Leaderboard not found == no score yet

There is a call on our Discord server right now. We invite you to suggest names for planets that we can include in Imagine Earth. We are working on a new game mode where you build a main space station while conquering procedurally generated galaxies. So we need names for all these generated planets. Can you think of names of planets from famous science fiction movies, comics and books that people would like to recognize? e.g. we already have Betelgeuse 7, Melmac, Altair, Kepler 186f…. in the game. We are looking forward to your ideas, post them in the General Channel on Discord or here in the forum!

Have fun with Update 1.02 and see you next time,
Martin and Jens

Hotfix 1.02.1

  • Fixed ArgumentNullException that appeared during missions
  • Re-activated mass-mode for tool ring (alt key) and added it for the gamepad
  • Moved “clear/repair/… all” buttons to top of building list columns and also introduced them for upgrades and city leveling
  • Fixed position of “open hypergate” button
  • Added missing alert for fires on non-colony buildings (e.g. gaian constructs) in your territory
  • Gamepad: Added context info for fast ring selection
  • Fixed chemical planet getting bonus from forests