Intro

Well, hello there Prospectors!

Patch 2.6.0 is our last patch for 2022 and we are including a lot of changes and adjustments to fix and solve some of the bigger pain points from our community.

We are going to have the maintenance for 2.6.0 on the 14th of December, exact times will be communicated separately.

With 2022 coming to an end, we want to thank all of you for being part of this wild ride and being a part of our community. Keep your eyes on our social media channels for our first Community Challenge Event that we will share with you in the next week, as you can grab some nice rewards from it!

In case you have not watched it yet, take a look at our recent Dev Update video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IU-9dfyfMdk

And with that, let's dive into the changes for Patch 2.6.0

Changes

Matchmaking

One of the biggest pain points that we saw from the community in recent weeks was that matchmaking felt unfair and caused a lot of frustration, especially for newer players. We took a look at the system and are going to change it quite drastically. The problem statement with which we approached it was the following:

"As a Player I want to make sure that I am matched against Players close to my skill level. This way I don't feel bored or too stressed but I can enjoy the tense uncertainty The Cycle: Frontier offers."

Note: We see this is an experiment. It can be easily toggled to the way it was before. We are trying this method out, to get live data, as you can't get the amount of data on a test server that is necessary to see how it truly impacts the gameplay experience. The learnings that we can get from these changes will be very valuable to evaluate additional adjustments that may come in the future.

So what are we doing exactly?

  • Duos and trios now also have beginner buckets - A squad only gets into a beginner match if ALL squad members are beginners.

  • We extended the amount of matches that players spend in the beginner buckets.

  • Matchmaking is now based on PvP K/D (Kill Death ratio). What we hope to gain from this:

    • Give players who may be terrible at PvP a chance to succeed. Give players who want PvP and want to duke it out with other skilled players what they seek. This should limit the amount of frustration a new player encounters, as we also checked the gear that is commonly used by players with a high PvP K/D, while still giving the opportunity to encounter different playstyles on your adventures on Fortuna III

    • Another bonus of using this method is that it will be more difficult to exploit or 'cheese' than the previous methods of matchmaking. 

This also mean that we adjusted the buckets of the different maps again, including absolute separation of squad sizes in Map 1:

  • Bright Sands Buckets:

    • 2 different buckets for Solos, for Duos and for Squads (so 6 buckets in total).

      • This means: You should NEVER be in a lobby with squad sizes other than your own on Bright Sands.

  • Crescent Falls Buckets:

    • Same as before

      • Solos only, for players that are still having a hard time

      • Good Solos, with some Duos

      • Good Duos, with some Trios

      • Good Trios

  • Tharis Island Buckets:

    • Solos, with some Duos

    • Good duos & Trios

We will monitor the changes closely to make sure our desired goal of making the game less oppressive for newer players, while keeping it fun for those more experienced prospectors is achieved.

Cheat Victim Compensation

We adjusted some of the features of the Cheat Victim Compensation, this means that no package should go missing on its way to you. We also adjusted the way the system checks and compensates items that were in your safe pockets at the time you dropped to the planet.

AI

We tuned some of our AI values to lessen the frustration for players encountering them for the first time.

  • Reduced Rattler Beam damage by 30%

  • Reduced Tick damage by 35%

  • Striders have been taught how to wait their turn and we introduced a global cooldown for Strider attacks to prevent all from attacking at the same time when surrounding the player

Misc.

  • After some player feedback, we have adjusted the sound of the bird sound trap, so they cannot be mistaken for footsteps as easily.

  • We increased the spawn radius for drop pods, so players should spawn a bit further away from each other.

  • We adjusted some of the ways in which the ban hammer strikes, to identify more cheating patterns with our partners.

  • Max player count on Bright Sands & Crescent Falls was reduced by 1. You're gonna have so much room for activities. 

  • We reduced the Letium requirements for the the level 9 Player Quarter upgrade by 100. You will need 50 Lithium instead of 150 now.

  • We adjusted the amount of items that are needed for early delivery missions and all dead drop missions.

  • We implemented some additional tweaks to our report player function. The easier it gets for you, the easier it is for us.

  • Additional adjustments to our anti-cheat detections.

  • We have added a functionality to redeem codes within the game, this gives us the option to create codes for items etc. on our end. (Do I hear giveaways?)

  • We have adjusted the pricing for our Sprays, Banners and Weapon Charms. These items will now be cheaper to get, as we heard your feedback.

  • Vanity tiers will be reflected with the proper color in your inventory, this will be improved on in Season 3. We will also increase the variety of vanity tiers.

  • Additional preparations for the Community Challenge, stayed tuned!

Bugfixes

  • We have fixed several spots on our maps, be it out of bounds or stuck spots.

  • We have fixed another small issue in the tutorial that could hinder players from finishing it.

  • We have fixed an item dupe exploit.

  • We have fixed an issue that caused Prospectors to go invisible while emoting. Our sci-fi prospecting world has lots of cool things, a cloak of invisibility is not one of them.

  • We have fixed most of the desync issues that you encountered when fighting our AI. Thanks to the Council and the Focus Test Group for checking it out and giving valuable feedback!

  • We have fixed an issue where players could get stuck on the station without being able to use their keyboard.

  • We have fixed an issue that insurance got voided when an item was put in your safe pocket. Seems like the warranty seals kept peeling off in Prospectors' pockets.

  • We have fixed the "timeout" errors that some players received when reporting other players.

  • We have fixed an issue that hindered squads to deploy under certain conditions.

Frosty Frontier Fest 2022

Something

If you have not signed up for free goodies yet, make sure to click this link and check all the details! https://thecycle.game/news-and-media/frosty-frontier-fest-2022

As a part of the Frosty Frontier Fest, we will have a Community Challenge for all Prospectors, more news on that will go out on the 22nd of December. Don't worry, we won't leave you out in the cold without all the juicy details. 

Known Issues

  • Player Reporting

    • It can happen that you get stuck when reporting another player. A restart will fix this and we have it on our "to fix ASAP" list.

  • Weapons

    • There are multiple hit registration issues present at the edge of the AOE when shooting with the Komrad.

    • No-reg hitmarkers and kill markers reports are being investigated by the team. 

  • Fortuna Pass

    • Claiming an Archetype displays duplicate body parts beside it (Chest, Gloves, Boots).

    • After completing one level purchase in the 'Fortuna Pass', the next consecutive purchase displays the icons of items from the previous purchase.

  • Gear visibility

    • In match, you don't see your own Backpack (can be evident when emoting) but can see other Prospector Backpacks.


As usual, don't forget to join us on Discord (https://discord.com/invite/thecycle) and our Reddit (https://www.reddit.com/r/TheCycleFrontier/) and make sure to follow us on Twitter (https://twitter.com/TheCycleGame)

Keep the feedback coming as we always appreciate constructive suggestions as to how we can improve the experience of Fortuna II. Y'know the gig: Fortuna Favors the bold!

If you want to read up on some Cycle holiday lore - https://thecycle.game/news-and-media/miracle-over-neptune

As usual, during the holiday period our office is closed and therefore our reactivity might be slower. We do, of course, have people on-call to check if there are pressing issues that require us to jump on them. The last two weeks of the year, is the only time where development slows down a bit, but we will be back in 2023 and release the next patch in mid-January. 

In case we don't hear from each other again - Happy Holidays, stay awesome and have fun on Fortuna III! 

Your "The Cycle: Frontier" Team

Any feedback? Please share it with us in our discord server

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