Patch Notes: 0.2.0

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We meet again, Rune Knights.

It’s been in the making for some time now, but we’re finally ready to roll out our first major update. The focus for this update: new weapons, Runesmith VO and SteamVR support!

We’ve added four (count ‘em: four!) new weapons to the roster: a mace, a rapier and two new non-weapon offhands that allow you to focus on your dominant hand’s weapon. The Knight Blooded Crest, one of these offhands, also introduces our 7th Super: Concussive Blast. When used, it will knock enemies away from the player in a suitably flashy fashion. Higher levels cause the blast to deal damage, which is pretty awesome.

This update also introduces some new VO from our Runesmith, Agatha, who should now be noticeably more present. With each enemy you encounter for the first time, Agatha will provide some backstory about the foes you're fighting. Additionally, she’ll make comments in the Runeforge, as well as react to how you’re doing in the run.

We’ve also finished fully integrating our support for the Rift S and Knuckles controllers. Additionally, SteamVR is better integrated to allow for custom button mappings through its Input Action interface.

Combine everything above with some balance updates, bug fixes, and some more polish around the UI and First Time User Experience, you’ve got yourself an update! Be sure to read the patch notes below for the specifics about what’s changed.

So, that’s about it for now! Give the new weapons a try, listen to that new dialogue, and, of course, let us know what you think on our Discord.

Keep slashin’!

- Dave, Project Director


Bug Fixes

  • Resolved an issue where using Concussive Blast under certain conditions would cause the game to crash.
  • Fixed issue where unsupported headsets weren't properly defaulting to the Vive on Steam VR, resulting in playability issues.

Four New Weapons!

With 0.2.0, we’re adding some new weapon types to the mix. Notably, the mace (which has a very unique spring/weight combination) and the Offhand Armaments, which are focused on players that want to double down on a one-handed playstyle. Credit for these weapons SHOULD be retroactive, meaning if you’ve already defeated both current bosses, these weapons should be available the next time you visit the Runeforge.

  • Vestal’s Wrath - Flanged One-Handed Mace with Soul Burn
    • Unlocked after defeating the Aether Horror at the end of Tier 1.
    • A stalwart and strategic heavy weapon that excels at rapidly smashing through enemy Guard. Although difficult to block with, catching blocks on the mace enables it to rapidly charge Soul Burn, making it a reliable source of health damage in the hands of a skilled Rune Knight.
  • Duelist’s Edge - Rapier-style Sword with Stasis Strike
    • Unlocked after defeating the Twin Captains at the end of Tier 2.
    • Elegant sabre that boasts better handling than even the arming sword, enhanced mobility, and some of the highest damage output in the game… as long as you don’t lose any health.
  • Knight Blooded Crest - Offhand Armament with Concussive Blast
    • Unlocked after your first attempt at the Shattered Woods.
    • A weapon of Martial prowess. In exchange for an offhand weapon, the Crest offers a unique super: “Concussive Blast”. Concussive blast is on a short cooldown, knocking back and briefly stunning all nearby enemies.
    • Additionally, the Crest features Martial Focus, which passively increases the Guard Damage (on block AND on hit!) of your other weapon by 30%.
  • Spellsword’s Charm - Offhand Armament with Void Trap
    • Unlocked after defeating the Aether Horror at the end of Tier 1.
    • For those who favor evasive styles and heavy use of Supers. Although armed with Void Trap for strategic play- the main feature of the Spellsword’s Charm is its innate Trait (Arcane Focus), which DOUBLES the Super Gain rate for both of the Rune Knight’s weapons.

The Runesmith Speaks!

This update gave us the chance to implement additional VO we had already recorded for Agatha (the Runesmith) to make her feel more present after the tutorial.

  • Added a variety of new dialogue that occurs in the Runeforge.
    • Returning from a run, buying weapons and even some idle chatter!
  • Added new dialogue for important moments of the game, such as encountering and defeating enemies for the first time.
    • Because some encounters are one-time introductions to enemies, you may not hear all dialogue unless starting a new Profile.
  • Added new keepalive dialogue that occurs during combat.
    • Your Runesmith companion should now feel more present beyond the tutorial!

Platform Support

With our 0.1.2 patch, we allowed all unsupported headsets to play the game without any major workarounds. With 0.2.0, we’ve added more official support for the Rift S and Knuckles, while also opening the games control bindings through SteamVR.

While we can’t promise to support every headset, we’re definitely listening to your feedback, so let us know if there's any way we can make it easier for you folks to play.

  • We have added full support (tutorial images, controller models and default button mappings) for the Rift S and Knuckles Controllers.
    • For folks that have already been playing with Index controllers, be sure to disable Grab/Summon as Toggle in Gameplay Settings if you want to try out our default button mapping.
  • SteamVR Input Action Integration
    • You can now, through SteamVR, define custom controller mappings based on your personal preferences.
    • Each supported controller now has default controller mappings as well that have been published to Steam.
  • Rift S Headsets now properly defaults to “Room Scale” being enabled.
  • Partial support for Windows Mixed Reality.
    • We have control mappings for the Windows Mixed Reality headset and controllers.
    • KNOWN ISSUE: In-game tutorial cards will still show Vive controllers.

User Interface & Settings

  • Pulled settings from other tabs to create a Gameplay Settings tab for ease of access.
  • New Gameplay Setting: Look Direction Movement
    • This setting (when enabled) allows players to change forward movement to always be based off of the direction the player is facing, rather than the direction the player was initially facing while moving.
    • By default, this setting is disabled, but we’d definitely recommend trying it if you ever felt that the walking movement’s direction ever
  • "Face the Flame" callout received an art pass for non-room-scale setups.
  • Improved readability for Reward Moment UI, with better respects to sorting orders.
    • Things should more reliably sort in a way that makes it easier to read in general.

First Time User Experience (FTUE)

Immediately after Launch (both on-stream and at PAX West) we saw some rough edges that we wanted to sand off. In order to help the first time experience flow better, we moved the inspection tutorial to be right before learning about your Supers. This also let us move up the Pausing tutorial, which felt awkwardly placed near the end of the tutorial.

  • Adjusted the position, phrasing and timing of several tutorial cards.
  • Moved Weapon Inspection tutorial to the “How to Use Supers” Tutorial.
  • Moved Pausing Tutorial to Room 3 of the FTUE.
  • Adjusted enemy positions in several rooms.

Balance Changes

With the game now in the wild, we’ve been receiving all sorts of great feedback about what’s feeling overpowered, underpowered or just plain...weird. While balance is an ever-changing beast, we took 0.2.0 to try and smooth things out a bit.

  • Traits
    • “Guarded” Trait 50% -> 25% Bonus Guard Damage.
    • “Fleet” Trait: Now grants 1 Dash charge any time an enemy is slain, regardless of weapon (kills from supers also count.)
  • Weapons
    • Arming Sword: Level 8 Upgrade now gives +5 Dash Damage instead of +2 Guard Damage.
      • The Arming Sword is meant to be a well rounded weapon. At higher levels, the high base power level of the “Guarded” Trait, and the Arming Sword’s innate high Guard Damage made it too efficient at blocking, making it more specialized than we’d wanted. Moving some of its power to Dash Damage helps it maintain an identity as a weapon that gives a “little bit of everything” as it levels up.
    • Heartseeker:
      • Innate Trait Bonus Health Damage on Combo Finish 3 -> 4
      • This should help the Heartseeker Axe more reliably kill Husks in two Crits. (Now one Crit can be a glancing blow.)
    • High Arcanist’s Blade:
      • Enkindled Trait unlocked at Weapon Level 1
      • Bloodthirsty moved to Weapon Level 4
      • Adjusted base Stats:
        • Initial Health Damage 6 -> 4
      • Adjusted Stats at Level 10:
        • Health Damage 7 -> 6
      • Level 10 now gives +2 Guard / +1 Health Dmg instead of +1/+1
      • The High Arcanist’s blade was an interesting weapon that didn’t really shine until it unlocked the “Enkindled” Trait. We felt that Enkindled made a much more iconic innate Trait for the High Arcanist’s blade. To keep the weapon from being too strong at Upgrade Level 1, we took some of the Sword’s stats and distributed them later in the Upgrade tree, to preserve the weapon’s strength at Rank 10, but make it more nuanced at Rank 1.
  • Supers
    • “Stasis” Duration 15s -> 7s
    • “Stasis” Level 3 changed to “Increases the Damage of Stasis Strike to 75.“
    • We’re keeping a close eye on Stasis, since as players have pointed out, taking an enemy out of the fight completely can be very strong. We still like the option that this gives players getting used to the game mechanics, though, since it takes some stress off of facing down two opponents at once. Reducing the duration should still provide a brief respite, without removing the opponent from combat completely.
    • We want Stasis Strike 1 to provide a strong Crowd-Control ability to assist new players that want to get used to fighting multiple enemies at once- but the scaling potential of Stasis Strike was too strong and too easy to achieve. Now, Stasis Strike should scale in offensive application without scaling in CC in a way that trivializes the game when combined with other powers.
  • Enemies
    • Combo Crit Minimum Duration Reduced to 0.5s from 1s.
      • Knights, Spellswords, Captains:
        • Min Crit Duration 1s -> 0.5s
      • Aether Horror:
        • Min Crit Duration 1.5s -> 1s
      • Combo Limit increases are very strong but didn’t have much tradeoff. This change should make Combos after 5 a bit harder to land, without making high combo limit builds worse. Daggers will still be able to follow up easily, but heavy weapons may become more difficult to land deep combos with. Our goal is to make sure there are viable high & low combo builds across all Ranks of weapons.
    • Captains:
      • Guard Damage Hit Mult 1 -> 0.9
      • Granting Captains a 10% resistance to Guard Damage from strikes, to make Captains a little more challenging to rush down at high weapon Ranks.
    • Empowered Knights:
      • Phase Two Guard Dmg Block Mult 0.75 -> 0.6
      • Empowered Knights now gain more resistance to Guard Damage from blocking when entering their Phase Two. This is to compensate for their increased number of attacks. Sneaking in Guard Damage hits around their attacks will remain as effective as it was.

Notable Bug Fixes

  • Optimized Combat UI for improved performance.
  • Made sure all fullscreen FX properly stretches for when FOV is modified.
  • Vegetation LOD no longer sorts incorrectly on level load.
  • It is no longer possible to kill the Knight in the Tutorial before the boss lands. This was very impressive, though.
  • It is no longer possible to quit out of the “Calibration” screen that appears if you stand up when in a seated calibration mode. This will fix some common exploits relating to the Rune Knight’s maximum height. Additionally, the calibration screen will appear more consistently if we detect an unusual height change during play.
  • Empowered Strikes should properly expire after killing an enemy with it.