Star Traders: Frontiers Update #47: Major Milestone "ELDER"
This one is big -- that's why we used all caps. ELDER completely reworks the meta for Crew Combat, so we suggest at least reading that section of the update.
While the update press for Star Traders: Frontiers slumbered for the last 18 days, we have been in the crunch at Trese Brothers HQ to complete and polish the Major Milestone ELDER update. It's so huge and sprawling that we've broken the release notes into 3 sections below -- the complete Crew Combat Rebuild, the Faen Saga and Everything Else.
Flowery words, aside -- let's talk specifics!
Crew Combat Meta RebuildWith the release of ELDER, everything is new again in Crew Combat. Previously, each combatant took a single action per round which grossly limited the best actions and put the focus on high DPS AOE attacks. The new meta now charges your combatants an Initiative cost per action and as long as they have remaining Initiative, they can take another action.
Each weapon and Talent defines its own Initiative rules, so you can fire a Pistol (6 Initiative cost) more times a round than your HMG (14 Initiative cost). Buffs, Debuffs and Healing each define their own cost.
AOE attacks multiply the Initiative cost of the weapon by 2X, so firing a 10 Initiative Rifle in an AOE attack costs 20 Initiative.
If you take an action that reduces your Initiative score to -10 or worse, you suffer a lasting Initiative penalty and are guaranteed low Initiative on the next round.
Weapons like Snubbers, Snipers and HMGs all cost more Initiative to use but pack walloping punch for it. Second-hand blades that can be matched with a Pistol are now real weapons that can be deadly and cost 6 Initiative.
The Piercing and Deflection system has been rebuilt to use a percentage system. Whenever an attack is made, if Piercing is equal to Deflection there is a 50% chance of a Piercing Hit, which reduces the enemy armor by more than half. For every % that Piercing is higher than Deflection, that is a % point higher chance of a Piercing Hit. Match targets for your best damage.
The auto-equip routine and therefore the AI got a lot smarter about equipping weapons and armor. There are new restrictions -- Sniper Rifles require a Job with Rifles Skill and Heavy Armor requires some combat Job. No more E-Techs carrying Sniper Rifles and wearing Heavy Armor.
With the new Initiative based system, almost every Crew Combat Talent has seen some form of change or tweak. Remember you can always Retrain your fighting men and women to pick new Talents. Everything is new again in ELDER.
v2.2.17 - Crew Combat Meta- Weapons define an Initiative cost to use (basic Pistol is 6, Rifle is 10, HMG is 14)
- Standard Attack Talents are 1X Initiative cost, AOE Attack Talents double (2X) the Initiative cost of the weapon
- Buff, Debuff, Healing Talents all have set Initiative cost as well
- Any Debuff or Debuffing Attack that reduces Initiative goes into effect immediately -- can strip enemy of Turn; +Init Buffs are included next Turn
- Bleeding and Bio-Poison now kill a target when they reach 0 HP
- Rebuilt Piercing and Deflection system to be % based, more impactful
- Rebalanced many Crew Combat Talents, including all On Init Talents, all Talents that modify Initiative, and all Bleed and Bio-Poison Talents
- Swordsman gains new attack Talent Flash Fury
- Weapon display now includes position for default attack talents
- Vastly improved quality and power of second-hand blades (equip with Pistol)
- New weapon/armor restrictions: Heavy Armor requires combat Job training, Sniper requires Rifle Skill from Job
- Auto Equip routine now equips Heavy and Stealth armor based on conditions (Stealth Skill, low Evasion)
- New animations, visual effects for crippling orders and buffs
- Improved Initiative equation to reduce randomness and narrow the band of Initiative rolls
- "On Initiative" Talents now fire on the very first turn of every battle
- Rebalanced Traits and Gear that modified Initiative
- Renamed Armor's Evasion stat to be Dodge to avoid name overlap with Evasion Skill (Strong Dice vs. Ranged Attacks)
Faen Saga ArcsMany Captains have already experienced the intrigue at the Faen family court from Valencia's side of the story. With this update, both Erik and Zette are now eager to loop the player into their angle, aims and schemes.
As both Zette and Erik's storylines have timers in which their window of opportunity closes, you'll get the best results with a new Captain and may find that they reject you outright if a Captain who has passed through the Duel tries to chat them up.
This is far from the end of the Faens' story, but sets the table for future eras and their potential interactions.
v2.2.17 - Faen Saga- Added Zette Faen's full story arc
- Added Eric Faen's full story arc
- Added hours of new story content
- Added new bosses, twists
- Uncover new lore and secrets
- Arbiter Brokstrom story missions now include +Personal Rep and +Influence bonuses
- Increased pay for many story missions
- Switched Valencia weapon component stash to water purifiers
With the release of the Faen arcs, we have knocked the final item off the v2.1.x family and all eyes and energy are turning toward v2.2.x!
Everything ElseThere is a long list of "left overs" in the ELDER milestone update. We've made a host of small tweaks to make important data more visible -- a ship's engine when considering a purchase, the legality level of goods when taking a stash or cargo mission.
We've added new Talent art and also made some reduces in power for Broadside Angle and Vigilant Scanners ship combat Talents.
v2.2.17 - 4/2/2018- Cargo and Stash Missions include details about cargo legality as well as permit
- New ship hulls for sale now list their Engine details in the offer
- Fixed issue with custom difficulty resulting in 119% or 111%
- Improved display of max character and job level
- Added 8 new Talent icons including many ship victory talents
- Fixed crashes and improved runtime performance
- Starting planet is considered Visited
- Improved Free Relanding interaction with Orbital Traits and Rumors
- Rebalanced Broadside Angle and Vigilant Scanners Ship Combat Talents
With ELDER release, we are on to the next major features, UI improvements and story eras!