So, you wanted one of these every week, but not all that much has changed. We’re still grinding away on the new everything.

This code re-writing is kind of like a virus. The more you change, the more you need to change. You get into the situation where it’s quicker and easier to replace existing code than integrate it with the new system. That’s what’s happening.
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A lot of people are complaining that we’re not giving enough updates on the development of Rust. They have suggested that we start posting weekly about what we’re doing. So that’s what I’m going to do. Even if that means every week I post “replaced 6000 lines of terrible code with 1000 lines of not so terrible code.
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Hi guys, We have a patch for you all which addresses some serious issues and provides some clientside improvements, check it out :

  • fixed airdrops – they will now spawn around noon daily!
  • fixed foundations destroying immediately upon placement and other issues where things would decay too quickly
  • fixed armor exploit where broken armor would not unequip if your inventory was full – you’ll just drop it now if it can’t fit
  • fixed extreme shadow flickering in buildings
  • fixed smoke signal not being influenced by lighting
  • fixed the fade from black starting too late after respawn
  • fixed the floating grass bug
  • fixed the first command entered into the console not working on OSX
  • tweaked tree billboard colors to better fit their mesh colors
  • added more control over image effects using the gfx console convars
    • gfx.ssaa true/false (enable/disable screen space anti-aliasing)
    • gfx.grain true/false (enable/disable radiation grain effect)
    • gfx.shafts true/false (enable/disable sun shafts)
    • gfx.damage true/false (enable/disable damage indicators)
  • added the console convar render.frames to limit the maximum fps to render
  • made lower quality levels automatically disable some image effects for better performance
  • added render.distance (0-1, default 0.2) to adjust the draw distance
    • this is currently only affecting the static rocks
  • enabled anisotropic filtering for terrain, road, rocks and building textures if quality level is above 50%
  • improved cloud synchronization to reduce situations where clouds have to jump around

 

As you all know we’re working on some bigger features and we hope to have them complete soon. Stay tuned!

Sorry guys, no real updates this week. There was a lot of moaning last week about the lack of ‘new stuff’ in that update. So we’re looking at ways to bring you ‘new stuff’ faster. Getting the foundations for this is going to take longer than a week.

The Item Editor

Something we’ve wanted to explore for a while is the possibility of an internet-based item editor. We want to get it in a position where anyone on the team can edit items. Then we want to open it up to the public – like TF2 did with hats. Obviously items submitted by the public wouldn’t automatically appear in game. We’ll be looking through them, you’ll be voting on them, we’ll be editing and accepting them and making sure it all works.

That’s our dream anyway. The website side is really easy. It’s getting the items in game that’s a bit more involved and might take a couple of weeks.. because a lot of stuff needs replacing. The good news is that it’s all crap and needs replacing with a better system, and once we’ve laid the foundations we’ll be able to add new items like it’s nothing.

The New UI

As part of these changes above we’re making a run at changing the UI. This is something we’ve been wanting to do for a while. At the moment we use a GUI system called NGUI. It’s the devil. Our version of the devil is quite a bit worse though because it’s been chopped up and edited. So we’re working to get rid and use DFGUI – which is what all the menu, chat and popup notifications use.

So why bother updating the UI when there’s so many other things that need doing? Well – we’re doing it because of those things. Right now we’re restricted by the UI because we know we want to replace it eventually so we’re putting off adding things (like putting stuff in stuff, weight effects etc) because we don’t want to write code to throw it away. The pass we’re doing on the UI should mean that we’re able to push even further forward.

Farming

Helk has started working on Farming. It’s what it sounds like. We need to explore a bunch of performance issues we may or may not have with the system – so this is taking longer than expected too.

Sorry

So sorry guys, no update this week. We’ve been dealing with a bunch of business stuff, and Helk is having some personal stuff to deal with, so progress has been slower than we’d like.. but we know what we’re doing and I’m positive that we will make you happy quite soon :)

Hey guys. Your weekly patch here. One week late. Sorry about that. We did want to get it out last week but we don’t like running the risk of having something broken over the weekends. So we opted to wait a couple of days instead.

New Sky

The biggest most obvious change in this update is the new sky. We’re still tweaking to get it looking how we want it to look.

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So why bother? There’s hundreds of other things you want – why bother changing the stupid sky? Well I’m glad you asked. The old sky was a slow horrible FPS killer. It rendered using two cameras.. which induces a bug in Unity that meant we couldn’t (without a bit of hacking around) have refraction effects in game. Everyone should see a nice framerate boost thanks to the sky being replaced. And it renders in a single camera – which means we’re free to use the refraction effects again (so expect to see pixelated penises again).

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One gameplay change the new sky might have is the with mr moon. Depending on the moon cycle night is no longer pitch black. We think this is a good thing.

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There’s a few rendering issues that we hope to fix as we go on. One is the tree lighting. Distance trees appear too bright. This is something we’ve battled with before – and as far as I’m aware it’s a Unity3D bug because I’ve seen it happen before. I’m sure we’ll be able to solve it though – so please excuse any issues like this for now. We’re working towards making it as perfect as we can.

New Water

As a happy consequence of the sky being replaced, we were able to bring you much better looking water. We expect water to play a bigger role in the game as we push forward (instead of the death plane that it currently is). So having it not look terrible anymore is a big win for us.

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There’s an extra option in the options menu to turn reflections on/off, as they do have an effect on performance. When you turn reflections off, it’ll still reflect the sky. Which has no real performance effect and stops it looking terrible.

OSX and Linux Fixes

We hired the new sky’s creator, André Straubmeier last week and as well as improving the sky for Rust, he’s been making Linux and OSX work properly. So Linux and OSX users should now see the grass being rendered properly and be able to join the game with high graphics settings (which is apparently caused by compiling for 64bit, we’re going to investigate that further).

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Item Durability

You know how you’ve had to replace your mouse and keyboard 3 times since you got Rust because you’ve used them so much? Well now you can experience that feeling in game too.

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Items will now become damaged in game due to repeated usage. Items can be repaired at a workbench Repair Bench. You can keep repairing your items but eventually they’ll just get that unreliable that you’ll want to throw them off a cliff.

Armor also loses condition when damage is taken, so you’ll probably have to eventually throw your pants of a cliff too.

 

A small Monday morning update for you guys, getting it out of the way in the hope of bigger things later on this week.

  • fixed unicode not working in name tooltips
  • fixed people using colours in name tooltips
  • removed ‘hatchet to gather’ tooltips
  • added whitelist servers
  • fixed broken explosives
  • fixed being killed by harvesting resources

 

The whitelist system is as simple as we could make it. If a server assigns itself to a Steam Group you need to be in that group to join it. Whitelist servers that you can join will show up in the whitelist tab on the server browser. We won’t ever show servers you can’t join (in both the normal tabs and the whitelist tabs).

Server owners can make their server a whitelist by doing something like this in their config file:

server.steamgroup 103582791429523489

Servers will need to be restarted before you can join them. If you can’t find your favourite server on the server list it’s because it hasn’t updated yet.

Just some minor changes we put up today :

  • resources should maybe hopefully not kill you anymore while harvesting them
  • wolves should actually scare other AI when they are chasing or attacking something
  • last chunk of rock should be on the ground instead of hovering
  • you can’t place shelters ontop of people anymore and lock them in
  • you can’t build stuff on top of large spiked walls anymore
  • you can’t build barricades on top of barricades anymore
  • fixed a minor issue with spawning wildlife and resource nodes which could cause some console spam on the server
  • AI figures out it can’t get to you much sooner and knows to retreat
  • shelters decay is active for sure and they will disappear
  • metal window bars are thinner and easier to shoot out of

We made our own anti cheat called CheatPunch last week. We ran it over the weekend. 4,621 people have been detected and banned.

We don’t know how stable it’s going to be, so we’re testing it out on our official servers to make sure it all works before forcing it on everyone else. If you get kicked from the official servers with the message that you’ve been banned then you have been caught. You’re a naughty boy. You know what you have done. You won’t get unbanned. We know it was your 9 year old cousin. We know your computer got hijacked. We know that the CIA is getting you banned from all your games on Steam so you will join them in the hunt for aliens. We’re aiming to get a site set up for people that have been banned so they can go and see proof that they’ve been caught.

CheatPunch isn’t the answer to all of our prayers. It’s a stop gap solution. It’s going to get rid of a bunch of cheaters, but it’s not hard to get around (by design). We fully expect cheats to be touted as ‘CheatPunch proof’ quite soon. That’s cool. We’re never going to be finished fighting.

If server owners want to run it on their servers they can do by updating to the latest version and running with “-cheatpunch” on the command line.

Zombies Were Removed

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Yep. We did it. We decided we couldn’t hold off any longer. The longer we keep zombies in – the more complaints we’d get about removing them. We are forcing ourselves to deal with it. We are no longer a zombie survival game! They’ve been replaced with red bears and wolves. You hate them. We know. They’re just plugging a gap for now. All will be revvvealed.

Wildlife Was Improved

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  • no longer exploitable by walking backwards
  • fears hostile wildlife
  • reacts to gunshots
  • hostile wildlife retreats if it cannot find a path to you
  • wildlife should not jump up and switch to random angles anymore
  • removed white wolf

Resource Objects Were Improved

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  • added new models for wood & stone resources
  • wood & stone resources change model to indicate their quantity
  • added another stone resource – contains mostly stone

Other Changes

  • fixed bugs with the level (such as rocks intersecting buildings)
  • the ‘oil tank’ area has been modified with cover
  • workbenches make you craft faster when standing next to them
  • added new player animations
  • improved melee attack animations
  • added locked backpacks and lockpicks test ( off by default )
    • when you die your backpack is locked for everyone else but you for a time
    • someone else can use a lockpick tool to bypass this time
    • lockpick tools are a default blueprint
    • you can’t use lockpicks on doors
    • the amount of time the backpack is locked for is per-server and can be set with the command player.backpackLockTime seconds
    • can be turned off by setting player.backpackLockTime to 0
  • footstep sounds will never play the same sound as the one previously played
  • grass textures have been improved

 

Known Issues

  • there are a small number of areas with what seems like invisible walls
  • there are one or two rocks without collision
  • there used to be  about 200 wolves in one area of the map, we fixed it, though.

The second one of these. Here’s what’s on our minds.

Cheating

Cheating is still a huge priority for us. Thousands of people have already been VAC banned. Even though VAC is doing a great job, a lot of people think it’s not responsive enough. What use is a hacker being banned in a week, when he’s on the server annoying you right now? We agree.

So we’ve been talking to a few different companies about other anti-cheat solutions. If we go for one of these, we want it to be super super lightweight. We don’t want to force you to install an obstrusive third party program. We don’t want to make you sign up for another system.

We’re also taking steps to deal with some of the more obvious of these problems ourselves. This is something we’re hoping you’ll start seeing the results of quite soon.. but please understand that we’re doing this from scratch – and these things take time. The very last thing we want to do is rush out a system that accidentally bans legitimate users – and then have to unban everyone. There needs to be no doubt that a specific steam account has been used to cheat.

It’s important to realise that there’s a lot about our anti-cheat measures that we can’t talk about, for obvious reasons. So it might look like we’re not doing anything about cheats. But please keep in mind that making the game as cheat free as possible is in our interest just as much as yours. It’s our game, of course we care.

Early Access

We feel like we aren’t making it clear enough that the game is Early Access. Rust is still in development. This isn’t 95% finished, like a regular beta. This is 10% finished. We’ve got the bare bone foundations of a game here. We’re still developing it.

This isn’t just is trying to make excused for putting out a buggy game. This is how it is.

Update Speed

We really feel like we’re letting you down with the slow release/size of updates. We’ve been trying to throw out weekly updates, but this isn’t consistent.

We’re looking at our work-flow and trying to identify ways to get stuff done faster. A lot of this is us thinking to ourselves “is spending 2 hours tweaking the colour of that texture a good use of my time”. But there’s a lot of ways we want to enpower the community to help us out. These are things we’re thinking about right now, and stuff we hope to be experimenting with in the future.

Trello

We have a Trello up with issues and stuff. This is just for us. You can see what we’re working on, and we’re trying to post updates regularly on the cards so you can experience the progress. This isn’t all we’re doing, we have a private board too – to hide some surprises/secret stuff we’re working on.

This isn’t somewhere for you to post bug reports, issues or requests – but you can certainly sign up and give us a vote on the cards you think are important or are looking forward to.

Server Stability

The huge attacks we were seeing on our servers a month ago seem to have stopped. We have reports of people attacking individual servers, this doesn’t seem to be any more of an issue than in a game like TF2.

Servers do start to suffer once they’ve had 200 people building stuff on them for a week or so. This is something that was impossible for us to test before we had 200 people that wanted to play. We are looking into performance issues, and fixing them where we’re can. This is an ongoing thing.

Server Hosts

We’re not looking for more GSP’s right now. We’re happy with the small group we’ve got. We’ll make a news post appealing when we’re looking for more.

Popularity

We are blown away by the popularity of Rust so far. It doesn’t even seem real yet. Our original plan was to release on Steam Early Access, without making a big deal of it, and slowly build up a bigger fan base by releasing regular updates, until we reached a point where we felt the game was ready for a bigger audience – and then start advertising it and bringing more people in. The unjustifiable popularity is both a blessing and a curse.

It’s a blessing because we’ve sold 750,000 copies in a month and a half, and this is an amount we never even imagined selling over the game’s lifetime. We’ve been the number one best seller for two weeks, we never imagined ever being listed. Rust has already made us 2/3rds the amount of money that Garry’s Mod has made in 8 years – and we never imagined reaching GMod’s popularity ever again. We’ve been the fourth most played game on Steam at points, reaching 50,000 online players – this is more than we could have ever dreamed of.

But it’s also a curse because the amount of people playing has kind of given us a sensory overload. We see all these amazing things happening, voices from all directions, ideas, bugs, cheaters.. and we’re scrambling to catch up with everything. So please don’t be offended if we’re not doing what you want us to, if we don’t respond to emails or tweets, if we’re not administrating the servers properly. We are still adjusting our trajectory, there’s still a lot we want to do.