This week has seen the release of the latest Mac beta build and an accompanying PC build (it’s 1.2.07, the same as the current released game, but running on a different server setup), so even if you don’t have a Mac, and you have beta access, you can help the beta out as we’re focusing on looking for any issues playing between Mac and PC. This is an important step towards the Mac release and is the first time players from different platforms will interact with each other in the Elite: Dangerous universe. As always thanks for the feedback so far, it had been invaluable.
In last week’s Powerplay AMA David mentioned that I would be doing a crime special covering the changes relating to crime in the Powerplay update. We’ve covered a few in previous dev updates, but I’ll collate them all here in one place for easy reference.
Fines will now take seven days before they mature into bounties, so giving you more time to clear them off.
Active bounties are changing so that they are issued by minor factions only, even for systems owned by one of the three major factions. You won’t be able to pay these bounties for seven days. We’ll tweak the friendly fire to be a bit more forgiving and we can balance this number further if needed. We’ll also apply the friendly fire to hits on players in the same way they are for NPCs.
Whenever you commit a new bounty offence in a jurisdiction where you already have an active bounty then the bounty value is increased and the timer reset to seven days. If you gain a fine in the same jurisdiction then the bounty value is increased, but the timer is not reset.
An active bounty is resolved in one of the following ways: Firstly if a ship detects the bounty and destroys you then the bounty is claimed and removed. Secondly if your ship is destroyed, but the bounty is not detected then the following happens: The bounty becomes dormant and can only be detected by authority scans by agents of that jurisdiction and if detected will become an active bounty with a new seven day timer. If a dormant bounty is not detected within seven days then it is removed. If an active bounty is not claimed or made dormant within seven days then it will be cleared.
Note that when a bounty is removed, for whatever reason, it is added as a legacy fine for the same amount and for the same jurisdiction. Legacy fines never expire and are automatically added to the rebuy cost if you restart in a station or outpost owned by that minor faction.
We recently added caps to bounties per jurisdiction. These caps will remain although they do not apply to fines and legacy fines.
During the Powerplay beta we’ll also trial a new crime of ramming at speed within no fire zones. If travelling at over 100 m/s and you collide with another ship within the no fire zone then it will be considered a crime. There has been some vigorous debate on this so it will be interesting to hear peoples’ thoughts on this once it’s in place.
Something we’re looking at a bit futher down the line, but might not make the Powerplay update is the concept of interstellar bounties. These occur when fines and/or bounties for minor factions within a major faction cross a threshold then they are combined into an interstellar bounty. They work in the same way as normal bounties except that the jurisdiction is counted as the whole of the major faction. There will be legacy interstellar fines in a similar way to the legacy fines already described.
One last piece of news for Powerplay before I sign off for this week and that is an improvement to how we cache shaders, especially for celestial objects like planets and stars, which is one of the causes for stutters that have been identified. We’ll continue to investigate other causes.