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The One Man MMO Project
The story of a lone developer's quest to build an online world :: MMO programming, design, and industry commentary
The Combat Update
By Robert Basler on 2020-02-03 21:20:10
Homepage: email:one at onemanmmo dot com

The Combat Update is now live. Players with the Launch Week Edition will be able to try out The Combat Update the weekend of Feburary 8-9.

[A new force beaming in.]

My goals with this release were to finish some features that had lingered partially-done too long, to add new units and gameplay elements, and to make combat more exciting. Players will notice a lot of bugs fixed, quite a bit of additional polish and some improved visuals. While I accomplished the bulk of my goals with The Combat Update, I'll admit I'm still not entirely satisfied.

[A small skirmish, I'm looking forward to larger battles.]

Gameplay Changes

The sole new unit is the Independents' Spy Satellite, there is a video of the unit in action and full details here.

[Redeploy Forces moves your base to a new location.]

Players have long suffered with having to logout completely to move their base, but those days are over. Players can now Redeploy Forces while not in combat to move their base and all their forces to a new location.

Force Attributes have reached their final form. Since I wrote about them I have added a level cap at 80 which caps refundable attribute points at 15. Attributes give by far the largest boosts to in-game abilities, so don't neglect them as you level up.


Unit pathing and collisions are greatly improved. Pathing had a major redesign as well as lots of bug fixing. One example of the problems I fixed is that previously dead units would disappear, but they would remain in the collision system until they were removed from the simulation by the server, so other units would end up taking very circuitous routes to avoid colliding with dozens of invisible dead units during battles.

Unit health replication got some work which makes uncontrollable zombie units a thing of the past.

Something that I wanted to add for quite some time was for weapons to take a period of time to travel to their target. Previously missiles would damage their target long before the on-screen missile struck. Now only lasers and lightning are instant-hits. You can see how that works now in this video.

The Loot System has also reached its final form, you can learn about the extensive loot changes here.

Unit Veterancy is also done, although it might be a little overpowered.


Loot crates from combat now only persist for five minutes but I added sparkles. Because loot crates should sparkle.

[Some of the new consumables on the new Inventory screen.]

Miranda gained a standalone Inventory Screen which players can toggle with I. On the Inventory screen players will find a number of Consumables which have been added to the game. You can learn more about the slot and bag system for Inventory Containers and Design Cases here.

A great number of new unit statistics are now visible to help players compare components as they level up.

One rule change players may not appreciate is that units purchased from a Vendor, or from Consumables such as crates can no longer be deployed while in combat. It didn't seem fair to allow players to add a hundred extra fresh units in the middle of a battle.

Visual Changes

The big visual improvement in The Combat Update is the Upgraded HUD and Minimap. I made a short demo video.

[PCF soft shadows beneath units.]

The other big visual improvement is PCF Soft Shadows. Miranda had Variance Soft Shadows already, but they didn't show up too well below smaller game features such as individual units. Shadows are very important for anchoring units to the terrain visually.

[Part of the unit sale effect.]

I've long wanted pretty effects for unit creation or sale, those are now in. I also added four levels of weapon effects.

When repairing units, the units now display an icon to indicate they are being repaired, and I also made it so that starting a repair doesn't deselect the currently selected group of units. This makes it easier to pick out all the damaged units in a group for repair.

For the number-conscious, The Combat Update includes:
  • 54 Additions
  • 160 Bug Fixes including "Independent units AI will attack units on their own team" and "Ctrl-Attack unit can attack itself."
  • 99 Changed Features
  • 17 Removals including perks for medium/heavy armour and medium/heavy tank and the shockwave effect for guns.
Weirdest change: "Moved rocks in game 1/2 tile to east and south so as to better align with collision grid."

Miranda is also running on new server hardware which is a lot more convenient for me to update and debug.

I hope everyone enjoys these new toys. There's more to come!

By Kurt on 2020-02-12 05:03:40
Homepage: email:
Looking good m8, just coming back to this after i bought t some time ago, looks more polished and interesting, are there more enemy mobs now ? do you have a constant onlineplayerbase now so world is more active ?
By Robert Basler on 2020-02-12 18:13:30
Homepage: email:one at onemanmmo dot com
Thanks! Much of the work in this update was polish and there are indeed more NPC's.

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