Hive Time

2019-11-29 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Today's update brings conflict warnings to Binder, and further implementation of InputMap actions across the game. At the moment, the population, defence, production, activity, resources, research, and foraging screens don't respect the "select" action, but I'll get to that in a future update.

Other than that, you're free to effectively rebind what was left click to any other button and have that behave correctly everywhere outside the main menu (to avoid people getting stuck and not being able to fix binding mistakes, I don't think I'm going to allow rebinding the menu controls). This is pretty exciting!

There are also a bunch of other minor changes, including a revamp of how camera panning works. Previously, I was doing some calculations based off camera zoom level, with the idea being that when you're zoomed in, you want to pan slow, and when you're zoomed out, you want to pan fast.

In theory, this is fine, but it's also important for the distance to feel consistent with mouse movement. It turns out my initial implementation was a bit off, with the playspace moving faster than expected under the cursor when zoomed all the way out. This wasn't super noticeable when playing windowed (which I generally do), but when playing fullscreen (as someone testing the game pointed out to me yesterday), it felt pretty off.

Now the game uses Camera.project_position() to work out exactly how many 3D in-world units the number of pixels that the mouse has moved represents, and pans by that amount, giving consistency at every scale. Huzzah!


Full changelog:

  • Added Hive Time icons for Binder buttons
  • Added custom button text and icon support to Binder
  • Added binding conflict notification to Binder
  • Added negative colouring for actions with no/conflicting bindings to Binder
  • Added custom mouse_entered signal handling to Binder
  • Added reset option update_bindings() in Binder for resetting all bindings to default
  • Added mouse over sound to Binder buttons
  • Added sound effect for completed research
  • Added bindable show_shortcuts action (default Alt)
  • Added 'No saves found' text to load menu when no saves are present
  • Refactored mouse button naming in Binder
  • Refactored binding string representations in Binder
  • Removed newline from Grid info radial menu option
  • Updated birds_and_crickets_loop to be less noisy and reenabled it in the ambient sound pool
  • Updated layout of Binder confirm and cancel buttons
  • Updated Binder to not duplicate action_list when set
  • Updated vignettes to use InputMap actions
  • Updated events to use InputMap actions
  • Updated cells to use InputMap actions
  • Updated bees to use InputMap actions
  • Updated radial menus to use InputMap actions
  • Updated activity indicators to use InputMap actions
  • Updated camera handler to pan based on projected distance of cursor movement rather than multiplied by camera zoom for gesture panning and mouse panning
  • Updated margins and ordering of stuff in controls settings
  • Fixed missing space in target deployed defenders
  • Fixed production facilities playing pause animations when already paused any time a bee leaves
  • Fixed scrollable area for 2D widgets in main menu not resizing correctly when transitioning from fullscreen to windowed mode
  • Fixed barracks cell coverage not catching the top row or the left most column of the play space

2019-11-28 Devlog

Good evening, fellow bee lovers!

Today's update brings in a couple of big changes. The most important of which is a first pass on custom key/mouse button bindings. To get this up and happening, I wrote a quick little side project called Binder, which takes some binding definitions with default values, loads any stored custom values from file, and sticks all of that into Godot's InputMap action list. It can also generate a UI for displaying those, adding and removing bindings, and saving that all out to a configuration file that's separate from the game's normal config file (so if a busted bindings file is somehow crashing the game in a way that makes that UI inaccessible, deleting that file is a low-impact way of resetting it).

I think that longer term, I'd like to make Binder into something that other people can use, but it needs a bit more polish, and that'll have to come after Hive Time is released. One piece of important Binder polish (and one that Hive Time will need) is a warning for when bindings conflict, so keep that in mind for the next couple of builds!

Another important change is a change to the user data path. This should now be directly in the US user data folder. On Linux, that's ~/.local/share/hivetime, on MacOS, that should be ~/Library/Application Support/hivetime, and on Windows, it should be %APPDATA%/Roaming/hivetime (I haven't yet double checked that on Mac or Windows builds, so apologies if that's incorrect). You should be able to copy your saves and config.cfg across to this new path without any issues. If you get stuck, just give me a nudge and I'll sort you out.

The number one change that is going to let me sleep at night is moving in-game music onto its own bus and controlling the volume of that rather than the volume of the music player directly. This doesn't stop the popping from occurring (best I can tell, that's a Godot bug that's beyond my ability to troubleshoot at the moment), but it does mean that I can have the bus muted at the point that it can potentially occur - it's intermittent, but only happens when a new track is started, and seems to happen within 0.01 seconds of the track starting.

I came across the idea for this solution when I was testing the game with the music muted (it still plays in the background so that if you turn the volume back up, it'll be where it's meant to be without having to track how much time has passed, etc.), and the popping was still occurring, leading me to speculate that if the pop isn't coming from the AudioStreamPlayer node, then it must be happening at the bus level. That's all boring stuff for you, but it's a big weight off my mind.

Last, but not least, I've finally gotten around to tweaking the beesitter decline notification threshold so that it'll only trigger if the population has gone down over three 30 second samples in a row. This sits on top of the other metrics I was using to calculate the projected number of deaths/beesitter births, so I still need to do a touch more tuning before I'm happy with it, but this should decrease the noise levels a bit in the meantime.


Full changelog:

  • Added music audio bus
  • Added WIP version of Binder for saving custom key/mouse bindings and loading them as InputMap actions
  • Added default bindings for for quick_save, quick_load, pan_modifier, pan_up, pan_down, pan_left, pan_right, toggle_inspect, zoom_in, zoom_out, zoom_way_out, pan_to_centre, repeat_build, select, and leave_menu
  • Added custom key/mouse binding UI to controls settings
  • Added activity notification for quick saves (Ctrl+S) and autosaves (default every 10 minutes)
  • Refactored music handler to control bus volume rather than audio player volume (seems to fix that popping!)
  • Refactored input handling to use InputMap actions
  • Removed Godot default bindings for zoom_in and zoom_out
  • Updated user folder to be in user data folder (not under godot/app_userdata anymore)
  • Updated near clipping plane
  • Updated antialiasing dropdown text
  • Updated beesitter population decline activity notification to only trigger when population has declined for three successive samples (on top of other checks)
  • Fixed zoom stutter when zooming in/out before previous zoom had finished
  • Fixed camera rotation not being reset when zooming out to the menu/returning from menu
  • Fixed cooldown cost sometimes showing negative values
  • Fixed potential crash when loading a broken save where hex type IDs are out of sync

2019-11-26 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Another update full of miscellaneous bits and bobs today. The most noticeable one is probably the addition of more themed widgets in the main menu. I still have to make scrollbars look nice, and rework the save/load screens, but it's nice to have everything else looking close to final.

I think (fingers crossed) I've also sorted out some of the frequent crashes in recent builds. It turns out that my efforts to try to address the popping when changing music tracks has resulted in a bunch of instabilities in the music player which were leading it to try to play a new track without a track being set. I've got another strategy in mind for getting rid of the pop (not the Beetles song - that's going to stay), so fingers crossed that that comes together when I have time to implement it.


Full changelog:

  • Added extra case to 'Something furry this way comes' event to prompt players to deploy defenders when defenders are available
  • Added extra case to 'Bear attack' event to highlight when undeployed bees might have helped
  • Added hexagonal theme to sliders, checkboxes, and buttons in settings and new game screens
  • Added error logging when trying to customise a bee that doesn't exist
  • Added error logging when trying to show details for a bee that doesn't exist
  • Added error logging when trying to show details for a portrait that doesn't exist
  • Added error logging when getting bee hat or effect instances when none is present
  • Added error logging for when a bee can't work out how to return to the hive
  • Added error logging when trying to close a radial menu that's already been closed
  • Added error logging when trying to play a music track with no track specified
  • Tweaked main menu layout slightly
  • Updated 'Bear attack' to use genericbad for default case
  • Updated positioning of bandana hat
  • Updated positioning of bearskin hat
  • Updated positioning of bobby hat
  • Updated slider lock icon to be invisible when disabled and partially transparent when in unlocked state
  • Updated category icons for role, storage and production
  • Fixed possible crash when trying to close a radial menu that's already been closed
  • Fixed possible crash when trying to play a music track with no track specified
  • Fixed music fade out state never being reset when resuming a track
  • Fixed save thumbnail camera position not being set correctly
  • Fixed research progress being reset after loading a save
  • Fixed population sliders being enabled when updating lock icon states when loading a saved game
  • Fixed other population lock icon state weirdness when loading a saved game
  • Fixed custom role sometimes not applying

2019-11-25 Devlog

Good evening, fellow bee friends!

Today's update brings in a new camera option that tilts the camera as it zooms in, getting up close and personal with bees and giving a better view of their hats (some of which need realignment now!).

There are a few other miscellaneous changes, but nothing particularly noteworthy aside from a fix for a possible crash when saving via the main menu. Today's been mostly spent getting the new Hive Time press kit and @Hive_Time Twitter account put together. Both always seem to eat up a lot more time than they need to, but they're done now (for Hive Time) at least, which gets things ready for the upcoming release date announcement. Exciting times!


Full changelog:

  • Added some new bee names
  • Added camera tilt when zoomed in
  • Added tilt when zoomed to video settings
  • Refactored camera handling
  • Replaced occurrences of 'everybody' with 'everybee' in vignettes
  • Updated depth of field thresholds
  • Updated quotes for consistency in events
  • Fixed grid tiles sometimes lingering when destroying disconnected cells
  • Fixed population slider unlock notifications not pointing at nursery cells
  • Fixed destroy repeat shortcut triggering destroy sounds when attempting to delete grid tiles or throne room
  • Fixed crash when saving via the main menu

2019-11-24 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Today's update brings in a feature that I've had planned since before we started development. One of the core concepts of Hive Time is about the fluidity of populations over time and the transient nature of an individual's life within a generational community.

Part of that is getting players to embrace the population churn of normal bees coming and going, making critical contributions to the hive with their short lifespans. Another part of that is finding a way to perpetuate the lineage of Queens, harvesting and producing until the hive can be assured of a successor, who is (theoretically) just as mortal as everybody else, but still playing a part in the permanence of the hive as an entity.

That's all well and good for me to say as a writer/designer, but unless a player has reason to think about this stuff, it's unlikely that they will. I've tried not be too overt when presenting these concepts (part of Hive Time's charm comes from its bluntness along other axes), but I have been putting in small things here and there that invite players to reflect on their experiences. Hive Time may ask players to accept that their bees are cogs in the machine that will eventually die, but through little character moments in vignettes, the ability to customise special bees, and the (comparatively) long presence of Queens it also asks players to remember them as interesting and worthwhile individuals.

To help give an opportunity for players to remember their time during a Queen's reign, portraits of deceased Queens are now added to the back walls of the Throne Room, hopefully prompting players a reason to think about their experiences and the countless little bee friends whose lives they've overseen.

The portrait images themselves are temporary, and there isn't yet any variance in what sort of silly stuff the dead Queens might be carrying, but it's wonderful to finally cross this item off my todo list :)


Full changelog:

  • Added deceased queen portraits to throne room
  • Added banners to upgraded throne room
  • Added reign tracking for queens
  • Added camera position to saves
  • Added collapse extra hud option to interface settings to default population and goal huds to hidden
  • Added OS name to log on startup
  • Refactored effect displaying code
  • Fixed possible crash when trying to auto-continue research when no workshops are present​

2019-11-23 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Tiny update today, as I spent most of the day on other projects, and spent most of my Hive Time time doing concept art for event images.

The main change in this update is limiting the camera to the available play space (no more getting lost in the green void).


Full changelog:

  • Added limits to camera movement to keep it within the play space
  • Renamed 'ambient' music folder to 'interstitial' (applies to custom music folders too)

2019-11-22 Devlog

At last, a Hive Time update!

There are a couple of noteworthy bits and bobs in today's update. The biggest (for me) is an overhaul of how environmental sounds (crickets, birds, etc.) are handled. Previously these were done in 3D, positioned above the hive, and captured by the same audio listener that hears the individual bee sounds as it moves up and away from the hive.

Through past experimentation, I discovered that these were putting significant load on the Godot's audio server, and were likely the cause of stuttering, garbled audio that I've been trying to properly address for a long time. According to Godot's profiler, moving these to 2D divided audio server frame time by 10, and it allowed me to more finely control the volume/overlap of sounds (previously, I had each sound player pushing 8db of amplification, which is nuts). There's a slight overhead from having to align the camera-relative 2D space that the new sound players live in with the game's 3D space, but it's minuscule by comparison. I haven't done thorough testing yet to confirm that the garbledidooks are properly gone, but I'm feeling pretty good about the impact of these changes.

I also fixed a problem where environmental sounds were tending to be clumped at the top of the playspace. To make sure I was seeing where they were getting placed, I used the witches hat hat as a visual indicator. It was fun to see little objects scattered across the playspace, but now that all that is fixed, they're gone. Maybe I'll add some other stuff in later ^_^

The change that's likely to be the biggest (for you) is the addition of a visual indicator to Workshop and Upgraded Workshop cells that tracks the progress of current research. It's subtle, but if you know what you're looking for, should still be visible when zoomed out. I haven't decided on the final presentation for this, but as what has probably been the single most requested feature, I'm glad to have it in :)


Full changelog:

  • Added research progress indicator to workshop and upgraded workshop cells
  • Added progress rings to interface settings
  • Added cell name to info item in radial menus
  • Added proper buttons for toggling population and goal HUDs
  • Added click hitbox to vignette indicator
  • Added debug mode option to system settings (enables debug shortcuts)
  • Added debug shortcut (Shift) for skipping the main menu at startup (must be pressed and held after window creation, but before logos appear)
  • Refactored environmental sound effects to use 2D audio
  • Removed vignette trigger from cell click event
  • Removed old population and goal HUD toggle buttons
  • Removed environmental cricket loop 3
  • Updated DOF to have more consistent balance between near and far
  • Updated beesitter decline warning threshold to be more generous
  • Updated menu shortcut (Esc) to exit inspect mode instead of jumping straight to the menu
  • Updated debug HUD toggle to only work when debug mode is enabled
  • Updated camera position to default when starting a new game or loading a save
  • Fixed upgraded storage cell resource height going weird when levels are updated while cell is popped in
  • Fixed inspect state not being reset when loading or starting a new game
  • Fixed clumped distribution of environmental audio
  • Fixed config version not being saved to file and triggering a config reset to happen every time the game is run
  • Fixed activity/event notification effect not appearing at default scale

2019-11-21 Devlog

Hello bee friends!

Small update today with a bunch of misc fixes/tweaks.

Biggest change is having a toggle to enable debug shortcuts/cheats. Currently this also displays a pretty clunky menu, but I'll likely rework that at some stage soon.

There is also potentially a fix for the audio popping that would intermittently occur at the start of a music track. I'm not entirely certain that I've nailed it down, but I haven't heard it all day, and that feels unusual. Fingers crossed!


Full changelog:

  • Added debug HUD with buttons for debug shortcuts
  • Added shortcut for toggling debug HUD (`)
  • Added reset to defaults button to each settings section
  • Added setting for the scale of event/activity notification size
  • Removed role selection buttons from bee customisation for Queens
  • Updated settings margins to remove gaps between sliders and their labels
  • Updated queen cooldown upgrade to take a bit longer
  • Updated royal decree upgrade to cost less jelly
  • Fixed music exists checkbox in event selector not working
  • Fixed bee and bird tweens not being cleared properly
  • Fixed explore button disabled state not being reset when loading or starting a new game
  • Fixed inspect button receiving clicks while radial menus are present
  • Fixed select sound being played multiple times when clicking new hive from the main menu
  • Fixed background music/interstitial tracks playing immediately after event music finishes
  • Fixed frequent events potentially interrupting tutorials
  • Fixed cell cluster cost in radial menu growing every time costs are refreshed
  • Fixed menu music volume not being updated when resetting to defaults

2019-11-20 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Today brings in some big changes to the main menu! Clicking "New Hive" now shows a menu with game-specific options, mostly comprising of things that don't make sense to set per-game like "skip obstacles", but also including a couple of new options. The majority of these are things that I'd normally call cheats, but for now, I'm labelling them as "Find your own fun."

The settings menu has been broken up into a bunch of submenus, which should make stuff a bit easier to see/find. There's a new interface section that currently includes the "hide HUD" and "always show shortcuts" options, which makes a bit more sense than just dumping them into the video section.

All this stuff represents changes that I've had planned for a while, and which will serve as a stepping stone to other things I'm hoping to add before release (such as custom keybindings).

There are a few other misc changes as well, so check the changelog if you're interested. Note that this update will trigger a config file reset!


Full changelog:

  • Added version number to config file
  • Added config reset for any config files without version numbers
  • Added config reset for any config files prior to preview-171
  • Added version number to settings menu
  • Added new settings section heading font
  • Added new section settings selection indicator
  • Added alternate queen vignette foreground
  • Added 360 main menu tile flip for transitions that lead to the same tile
  • Added new game menu
  • Added customise all bees game option
  • Added unforgiving game over game option
  • Added Alt+Enter shortcut to main menu
  • Added dimming effect on other radial menu items when mousing over a back button
  • Moved skip obstacles, skip tutorials, skip events, skip vignettes from settings menu to new game menu
  • Moved always show shortcuts into interface settings
  • Moved hide hud into interface settings
  • Updated handling of dead queen when choosing to continue playing (not very tested, may result in crashes?)
  • Updated research completion handling to automatically continue paused research options if there are any
  • Refactored settings menu to use submenus for each config section
  • Refactored menu freeing
  • Fixed Alt+Enter shortcut not working while radial menus are displayed

2019-11-19 Devlog

Hello, bee friends!

It's new hat Tuesday! Beesitters get three new hats and Builders get one more. This gives every role except Queens three non-default hats for use by special bees.

There are also a couple of minor fixes, including a fun oversight that reset bee lifespans (excluding Queens) when loading a saved game.


Full changelog:

  • Added shortcut (Alt+Enter) for toggling fullscreen
  • Added nurse hat, grad cap, and bifocal hats for special beesitters
  • Added face shield hat for special builders
  • Updated position of settings menu tile to appear in bottom right of menu space
  • Updated some music handling stuff in an attempt to address popping when playing new track
  • Fixed bee lifespans not being loaded properly from saved games
  • Fixed new hat being applied before new role when customising
  • Fixed memory leak when closing menu

2019-11-18 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Several new hats for special bees today, as well as a proper implementation for the generic events that I pulled out for the last build.


Full changelog:

  • Added earmuffs hat for special Builders
  • Added straw hat and bushman hat for special Foragers
  • Added implementation for generic vignettes
  • Fixed bee customisation dialog defaulting to no hat when switching to roles other than Worker
  • Fixed bees getting new names after having their roles changed by effects or customisation
  • Refactored bee import flags
  • Refactored vignette processing
  • Renamed welding helmet hat to welding mask
  • Updated obstacle spawning and connection processing to always be disconnected
  • Fixed jelly production vignettes not being loaded correctly
  • Fixed queen vignettes showing random names when current queen is unavailable
  • Fixed roles not applying correctly when closing customisation menu by clicking off

2019-11-17 Devlog

Greetings, bee friends!

Another mixed bag of updates today!

Special Builders now have a welding helmet that they can wear (and hopefully see through), and the "A new Queen arises" event now has images, showing the coronation of a new Queen.

I've written 15 new vignettes, and temporarily removed the 10 generic ones that were previously showing up for Wax Assemblers. I've added 5 more generic ones and separated them all out from the cell-specific vignettes so that they can be be used for any cell type when I get around to adding them back in in a future build.

I've also renamed the "traffic cone" hat to a "witches hat" hat, since that's what I call them and "traffic cone" isn't as big a part of the Australian vernacular that I'm drawing upon for this game.


Full changelog

  • Added new queen event images
  • Added welding helmet hat for special builders
  • Added throne upgrade as a requirement for forager upgrade research
  • Added 11 new wax assembler vignettes
  • Added 1 new honey refinery vignette
  • Added 4 new jelly refinery vignettes
  • Added 5 new generic vignettes
  • Moved generic vignettes to generic_vignettes.json (not currently implemented)
  • Updated 'The mark' nursery vignette text
  • Updated 'A graceful return' event text
  • Reduced royal decree jelly cost and increased pollen/nectar cost
  • Renamed traffic cone hat to witches hat
  • Fixed typo in flower substitutions
  • Fixed possible crash when worker finishes working after construction on an upgraded production facility starts
  • Fixed beesitter decline notification being repeated infinitely

2019-11-16 Dev stream

Cheese makes a bunch of hats for Hive Time on

2019-11-16 Devlog

Buzz buzz buzz buzz!

Today's update has a whole stack of stuff!

Six new hats are available to give to special bees (three for Workers, three for Defenders). These only have cosmetic value, but they're fun and that's nice. If you'd like to watch me make them, I managed to catch it on stream. Special bees will now also pick an initial hat at random.

One awkward side effect of this is that changes have meant that any saved bees from the past week will be loaded without hats. I've decided to overlook this since it's primarily a cosmetic thing, and since a full population cycle (ignoring special bees whose hats you can change manually anyway) takes about 90 seconds, it's not an issue for long.

Peter's passed me a new music track that is the new default event track, freeing up "Working Well" to be used for overtly positive events. This should help expand the tonal range of events a bunch, and I'm looking forward to seeing how the game as a whole feels with this change.

There are a bunch of new/previously missing building info screens that are in now.

In addition to all that, there are a whole bunch of bugfixes as well. Exciting times!


Full changelog:

  • Added a new bee name
  • Added generic neutral event music track
  • Added slugmonkA to dead not-last queen event
  • Added activity notification when beesitter population reaches zero
  • Added activity notification when beesitter population starts to decline (needs tuning, probably isn't as sensitive as it needs to be)
  • Added new traffic cone, party hat, and sunglasses hats for special workers
  • Added new bobby hat, aviators, and bearskin hats for special defenders
  • Added random chance for any role-specific hat to special bees
  • Added random chance for any trail effect to special bees
  • Added building info screen for upgraded nurseries
  • Added building info screen for upgraded barracks
  • Added building info screen for wax assembler
  • Added building info screen for honey refinery
  • Added building info screen for jelly refinery
  • Updated building info screen title for jelly refinery
  • Updated upgraded workshop info screen to use normal workshop background for now
  • Updated bee bumble behaviour to prevent bees from stopping on the throne tile
  • Updated research screen to always show unlocked research options regardless of whether research conditions have been met
  • Refactored hat handling (will cause bees in saves made between preview-155 and preview-163 to have no hats)
  • Fixed default hat not being set properly when loading save games
  • Fixed upgraded barracks intermittently only covering base barracks range
  • Fixed upgraded production facilities not playing animations
  • Fixed cells under the mouse cursor getting pop-in events when selecting a category in a radial menu
  • Fixed role lock states not being reset when spawning a new queen into a new hive or when loading a saved game
  • Fixed role lock buttons remaining enabled when spawning a new queen into a new hive
  • Fixed build allocation indicator in radial menus not being updated when construction finishes
  • Fixed upgraded production not receiving pause/resume state changes

2019-11-15 Dev stream

Cheese plays Hive Time and works on some bug fixes on

2019-11-15 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Another update with misc fixes from today's dev stream.


Full changelog:

  • Updated production facility upgrade research times
  • Updated production facility upgrade construction costs
  • Fixed typo in 'Weirder science' event reported by chiitoo
  • Fixed possible crash where production animations could start/stop on production facilities that were still being upgraded
  • Fixed possible cases where production checks could use the wrong hex type for upgraded production facilities
  • Fixed possible crash when setting paused state for upgraded production facilities
  • Fixed new slider activities triggering when sliders were locked by players
  • Fixed forager population HUD indicator not enabling
  • Fixed population limit increasing when nurseries are destroyed

2019-11-14 Devlog

Hello bee lovers!

Today's update brings in a bunch of misc fixes and small tweaks. I've spent the past couple of days taking it easy and having a break after the big push of the past week or two. Planning to do a stream in the morning, and then back into polishing things up!


Full changelog:

  • Added tooltips to bee customisation dialog
  • Added alert activity type
  • Removed confirm button from bee customisation dialog
  • Updated music player to avoid playing the same background track twice in a row
  • Updated hero bee chance and hero bee limit to be lower
  • Optimised worker production handling code slightly
  • Fixed special bees dying when changed to a role that's over capacity if they're over half the base bee lifespan
  • Fixed flickering in build preview materials
  • Fixed cells along the western edge of the playspace not being connected properly to the rest of the playspace
  • Fixed some cases where non-primary cells of multicell constructions would be marked as not connected after loading
  • Fixed some obstacles receiving decay material overrides
  • Fixed population locks being loaded with the wrong state
  • Fixed a typo in 'There's nothing like it' vignette reported by ozoned
  • Fixed several cases where production facilities would retain producing state after worker bees had left
  • Fixed population lock icons loading with the wrong state
  • Fixed defender population slider not unlocking correctly
  • Fixed repeat build actions working on under-construction cells
  • Fixed empty cell and cell cluster build actions always playing the build sound regardless of whether anything is built

2019-11-12 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Today's update has a bunch of misc tweaks and fixes. Turns out that yesterday's attempt at tackling Worker bees not prioritising construction wasn't as thorough as I'd hoped. This should properly be addressed today (unless I've overlooked something again!). To make up for it, there's also a small optimisation for Worker and Builder efficiency that will stop them from deciding to take a bumble break if the construction they're heading to is finished before they get there.

I also spent a little time looking at which sounds are creating the biggest load so far as audio performance goes and have decided to halve the default the environmental audio count (at some point I'll put a setting in like I have for bees). On my dev machine, this come close to halving the amount of CPU time eaten up by the engine's audio server, which is good, but it doesn't really address that I want/need to play more sounds rather than fewer (more on that later).


Full changelog:

  • Added activity notification when a new population slider is unlocked
  • Added population slider lock state to save file
  • Added click prompt to bee details pop up
  • Added added icon for hero bee spawn activity notifications
  • Fixed workers not being assigned builder temp role when taking a break from construction
  • Updated worker and builder behaviour to have workers not already at a construction site when it finishes immediately find a new construction site without bumbling
  • Updated spawn chance for special bees to be a little smaller
  • Updated default environmental sound limit to be smaller
  • Refactored production pause state control
  • Fixed possible crash when starting a new game after environmental sound volume is set to zero
  • Fixed max_deployed_defenders condition returning false when deployed defender count is equal to target
  • Fixed some possible crashes relating to doing queen related things after the current queen has died

2019-11-11 Devlog

Hello hive friends!

Today's update has some quick bug fixes and optimisations for hive destruction/decay stuff, as well as a fix for a regression of Worker-bees-not-prioritising-building-until-there's-a-workshop.


Full changelog:

  • Fixed workers and builders constantly bumbling when no workshops are present
  • Fixed multicell constructions not properly setting connected state to all of their cells
  • Updated all cell destruction to be queued and actioned at once
  • Fixed destruction of non-empty cells always destroying the underlying empty cell
  • Fixed normal destruction triggering disconnected notifications

2019-11-10 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Today's update brings in what is (unless I come up with some high impact/low scope stuff before release) the last gameplay feature I'll be adding. Cells that are disconnected from the hive (that is, cells that don't have a direct or indirect connection to the throne) will now decay over time and eventually be destroyed.

This means that when Old Bitey punches the hive around a bit and separates your big bank of nurseries from the rest of the hive, you'll need to scramble to reconnect them before they disappear. Bees will still continue to use decaying cells, so you'll still be able to eke the benefit of Defender patrols or Builder research time if you aren't able to or choose to not reconnect separated hive chunks.

This stuff is still pretty rough/untested - the game will slow down/go a bit weird when a lot of cells are being destroyed at once, destruction events on disconnected cells will end up losing their decay effect. I'll tidy that stuff up in time, but for now, I'm super glad to mark this one off my todo list! :D


Full changelog:

  • Added tracking of whether cells are connected to the throne or not
  • Added destruction timeout to disconnected cells
  • Added decay effect to disconnected cells
  • Optimised cell tick processing slightly
  • Optimised cell input processing slightly
  • Fixed crash when loading pre preview-156 saves containing multicell constructions

2019-11-09 Devlog

Bees, bees, bees

Today's update adds special bees (internally I've been calling them "hero bees," but that's marginally gross terminology I picked up way back when I worked in the retail industry). These bees live a bit longer, work a little more efficiently, move a little faster, and stand out a bit visually.

Aside from Queens, all of the bees in your hive end up being pretty transient, and I wanted to have some special ones that players could get attached to - when you've got a population of 500 bees, keeping track of all of them is too hard anyway.

Alongside this, I've also added bee customisation options. Currently, you can only customise special bees, but I'll probably add an option to the settings screen to enable it for all bees. Right now, it lets you change bees' names, their role (this probably won't be enabled for everyone if I do add a setting to enable it hive-wide, since that'd risks breaking some things), what hat they're wearing (currently only default hats or no hat, but I'll add a bunch of role-specific hats in a later content pass), and what kind of effect trail they leave behind (currently this is three boring ones, but I'm going to add more exciting stuff later).

Peter managed to find a nice way to bring back the previously orphaned track that we removed from the game a while back. Rather than filling in as one of the background music tracks, it's getting a place of prominence as accompaniment to the final event of the snail monk chain. It's very nice to have it find a home (this time for sure!).


Full changelog:

  • Added some new bee names
  • Added new music track for the 'Slime blessings' event
  • Added activity type for bees
  • Added rare special long-lived bees
  • Added sparkles, bubbles, and dots effect trails for special bees
  • Added customisation options for special bees
  • Added force hero debug shortcut (Ctrl+N)
  • Updated activity indicators to not count time while moused over
  • Refactored bee hat management
  • Fixed some unused variable warnings

2019-11-08 Devlog

Hello, bee friends!

Today's update is superficially small, but kinda big on the inside. The main feature is the population slider locks that are enabled by building upgraded Nurseries, Workshops, Barracks, Map Rooms and the Upgraded Throne Room. These allow you to set a slider where you want it to be and fiddle with the rest without affecting it. Multiple sliders can be locked, but obviously, that's going to give the rest of them less wiggle room (if there's only one unlocked, you won't be able to move it).

While implementing this, I did a big refactor of population handling, which simplifies and unifies a whole bunch of code. I haven't given it super thorough testing, but ideally, this should resolve some lingering slider funkiness such as negative slider values too.

There's also a new research option that allows more than two Queens to be active in the hive at once by shortening the cooldown between Queen spawns, allowing for more Queen effects to be active at once When used in conjunction with the Royal Decrees upgrade.


Full changelog:

  • Added queen spawn cooldown upgrade
  • Added population screen's slider lock buttons (enabled by upgraded role-specific cells)
  • Refactored birth ratio handling
  • Reworked population screen widget structure

2019-11-07 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Today's update brings in upgraded resource facilities! Upgraded Wax Assemblers, Honey Refineries, and Jelly Refineries provide a speed boost to Workers carrying resources away to store, or frees them up entirely by sending resources directly to adjacent storage facilities. Both of these free up Worker bees to do more with their little lives, whether that's hopping back onto production sooner, or jumping into any of the other roles they can fill. Upgraded production facilities also allow for manual control over production priority, overriding the default proportional prioritisation of empty storage.

Initially, I'd wanted to do an adjacency bonus for having multiple production facilities next to each other, but since that isn't scalable in any way that's rewarding or fun (to keep 5 honey refineries running at full efficiency, you'd need 45 pollen, 45 nectar, and 180 honey coming in every second, and that's without taking costs of honey production into account).

With the way the game is structured, making production cheaper or yield more only makes the mid/end game less interesting since you're already capable of producing more than enough resources. A reduction to the time that Workers spend storing produced resources feels like a much better approach since it has knock-on effects that influence all their other activities, but still feels relevant to production.

I also spent a little time trying to track down a lingering bug where production facilities won't reset their production state when the last Worker leaves (you may spot production animations continuing when nobody's around), but haven't quite nailed it down yet. This doesn't have a gameplay impact, but it does prevent the production screen from showing accurate information on why production is/isn't occurring in certain circumstances.


Full changelog:

  • Added wax assembler upgrade
  • Added honey refinery upgrade
  • Added jelly refinery upgrade
  • Added storage adjacency/worker rush bonus for upgraded production facilities
  • Implemented production screen priority sliders
  • Removed numeric labels from production screen priority sliders
  • Refactored foraging payload calculation
  • Refactored production priority handling
  • Fixed possible crash when a bee finishes production after a production facility is upgraded (shouldn't have occurred in live builds)
  • Removed old construction menu code from the jam UI
  • Removed some extraneous logging

2019-11-05 Devlog

Greetings, fellow bee lovers!

Today's update adds a new research option for building multiple empty cells at once, making mid/late game hive expansion a bit less click intensive. When selected, the cell cluster build option will build empty cells in all unoccupied cells that are adjacent to the selected cell (constructing a maximum of 6 cells without overriding anything that's already present).

There are also a couple of research tree changes, making the upgraded throne room and the things it enables no longer require an upgraded workshop. This helps give the sense of two distinct branches of research rather than one miasma.


Full changelog

  • Added empty cell cluster upgrade research option
  • Added minimum beesitter population condition to 'specialisation is for other insects' event
  • Added event list dropdown to event selector debug screen
  • Added bee effects to bee object for future portrait stuff
  • Updated throne upgrade research to not require an upgraded workshop
  • Updated wax assembler upgrade research to not require an upgraded workshop (not yet implemented)
  • Updated upgraded barracks model to reduce zfighting on posters when zoomed out
  • Refactored queen effect selection code
  • Fixed tops of honey and jelly refinery build previews not being transparent
  • Fixed typo in throne upgrade research description

2019-11-04 Devlog

Hi friends!

Today's update brings in some changes to the event handling system, giving it more granular control over how frequently certain types of events occur. This should increase the frequency that wasps, ninja fruit flies and Old Bitey show up, which in turn raises the relevance of hive defence.

This builds on top of several big changes to events, and enables things like the new Old Bitey event, where an event that warns players that Old Bitey is coming fires first, creating an effect that counts down until Old Bitey actually arrives. For a potentially catastrophic event like this one, giving players a grace period/time to prepare has been something I've been moving toward for a long time.

Being able to trigger events immediately after a set duration or immediately after some conditions are met (whether visible to the player or not) gives me a whole lot more flexibility when it comes to designing/writing them, and I'm looking forward to reworking some of the more complex events, like the slug outlaws and vinehopper scientist chains.


Full changelog:

  • Added frequent events list for events that should occur with tighter rotation
  • Added 'Something hairy this way comes' event
  • Added deployed_death_multiplier effect
  • Added max_deployed_defenders and min_deployed_defenders conditions
  • Moved Old Bitey event to special event list and added variations depending on deployed defender count
  • Refactored handling of effect follow ups
  • Refactored event handling (minor change pending future changes)
  • Updated build system to bail before deploying when repo is in dirty state
  • Fixed possible crash when role swapped bees become undeployed defenders while outside the hive

2019-11-03 Devlog

Buzz buzz!

Today's update adds a new research option for deriving extra benefits (and maybe a drawback or two) from future Queens. This is a late game thing I've had bouncing around in the back of my mind for a while that's intended to give some variance and texture to each Queen's reign. Currently researching this will give every future Queen two positive effects and one negative effect that will last for their entire life. These are limited to harvest multipliers, lifespan multipliers, and efficiency offsets at the moment, but I'm hoping to throw some extra things in that are more specific (a Queen that somehow attracts bears sounds like fun).

Speaking of fun, there's a new effect type that I've added (currently used in the negative branch of the vinehopper science chain) that blasts a hole in the hive and damages surrounding cells. Exciting times!

Also new in this update are a couple of pieces of background music from Peter: a new background music track called Morning Buzz, and a new ambient interstitial track that features a ukelele. Here are some thoughts from Peter about the former:

"Morning Buzz is the 4th and (at least for now) final major background track for when the hive is in business-as-usual mode. When working on the main chord progression I was thinking a lot about a feeling of pleasant anticipation in getting a task underway, which to me gives this track a morning feel - after dawn, but before things have settled into an afternoon routine. Classical winds have featured elsewhere, but here I've given them a bit more of a spotlight, with the Oboe getting itself a solo in the second section where the melody gets a little more wistful."

I managed to pack in a few bugfixes today as well, the most noteworthy being the resolution of the long-standing barracks-get-weird-at-the-edge-of-the-playspace bug. That should be resolved now. Upgraded barracks' hexagonal indicator in the Defence screen is still not the correct aspect ratio, but that's a cosmetic thing that I can deal with down the track.


Full changelog:

  • Added Morning Buzz background music track
  • Added new ukelele 'ambient' background music track
  • Added destroy_cell_type_punch effect for punching holes in the hive
  • Added coordinate based get_surrounding_hexes implementation
  • Added throne upgrade too bee role upgrade requirements
  • Added Queen bonus upgrade research option
  • Added Queen bonuses
  • Added activity notification when new research options become available
  • Added debug shortcut for zeroing active cooldowns (C)
  • Removed some extraneous logging
  • Removed birds_and_crickets_loop.ogg from distant environment sounds rotation
  • Refactored research requirements checks
  • Updated research name for Throne Room Upgrade for consistency
  • Updated research screen to remember which tab was last selected
  • Updated Queen effect indicators to show remaining life rather than total lifespan
  • Fixed possible crash when calculating canBuild for multicell constructions that go off the edge of the playspace
  • Fixed barracks' coverage range being truncated when intersecting the edge of the playspace
  • Fixed cases where the parent cell of a multicell building wasn't being acquired properly
  • Fixed destroy_cell_type_punch sometimes missing adjacent cells
  • Fixed lifespan_multiplier and lifespan_offset effects not converting role name to role enum
  • Fixed extra select sound being played when opening research screen
  • Fixed distant environment sounds not being audible
  • Fixed wrong effect being applied when loading tutorial effects from saved games
  • Fixed effect details eating mouse input
  • Fixed effect details indicator's vertical centring
  • Fixed queens potentially getting multiple bad bonus effects

2019-11-01 Devlog

Welcome to November!

Upgraded Barracks are here, rounding out upgrades for all of the role-specific cells. These have double the radius of non-upgraded Barracks, making the hive easier to cover with fewer buildings. Right now, there isn't a minimum frequency of defence related events, but I'll be addressing that in a future build, which will make Barracks a bit more relevant.

Today's update also includes researchable efficiency upgrades for all specialist roles, increasing the resources that Foragers can carry, how quickly Builders progress research and construction, etc.. These currently require an upgraded workshop and upgraded versions of the relevant associated cells to be built (eg: Beesitter upgrade needs an upgraded Nursery.

Currently it's not so easy to spot when these become available, but in a future build, I'll be adding an activity indicator when new research options are unlocked to help guide players towards stuff.

The last couple and the next several updates have been/will be focused on pushing in more gameplay-relevant content (cell upgrades, bee upgrades, research options, events, etc.), moving closer to what's going to be in the release version of the game.

Some of these are going to come in a bit rough and not-quite-fully-featured (for example, the upgraded nursery will be exposing some options for managing population sliders a little differently, but those are something I can add later without having a big impact on gameplay/balancing), but I think this is the best approach to get me closer to release as fast as possible.


Full changelog:

  • Added efficiency upgrade research option for beesitters
  • Added efficiency upgrade research option for builders
  • Added efficiency upgrade research option for foragers
  • Added efficiency upgrade research option for defenders
  • Added upgraded barracks
  • Added icons for radial menu options leading to submenus
  • Updated ordering of cell upgrade research options to match cell research options
  • Updated tooltip delay to 0.5 seconds
  • Updated rendering engine to use Godot's multithreaded model