Posts Tagged Release

0.6.1 Hotfix 4

Welp, we finally managed to track down the Black Ground bug, by means of Google research and an Ouija board. Turns out AMD cards can’t use a 2.0 vertex shader model in the same pass as a 3.0 pixel shader model, but rather than doing something sensible like, I dunno, telling me about it, instead it adopts the much more interesting approach of falling over randomly and not drawing anything.


Fixing this meant adjusting a whole bunch of shader files, and I lost track of which ones had been modified somewhere along the way, so to get the hotfix you’ll need to re-download the game. If you extract the files into your existing Species folder and merge/overwrite, you should be able to keep your save games and exported creatures.


Also made a few small tweaks and fixed one of the more common exceptions. Potentially-stable release ahoy!

– Fixed the Black Ground/Invisible Creatures issue people with AMD cards were experiencing.
– Fixed the ArgumentOutOfRangeException that was causing crashes after an unspecified period of time.
– Tweaked Body Pitch so creature’s don’t lean back as much as a result of growing legs
– Tweaked CalculateReach so creature’s can’t increase their reach by having a not-expressed neck length.

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Species 0.6.1 Released

Welp, here we are. Species 0.6.1 can now be downloaded from the download page.

Get the latest release of Species here!

This release was all about cleaning up the back-end code for future features and making visual improvements.

Be warned, this release is likely to be amusingly buggy for a week or three. Whether or not that’s a good thing depends on how much you enjoy watching me scramble about like a lemur on fire trying to keep up with the necessary hotfixes. And let’s face it, of course you do, that’s hilarious. You bastards.


Stability Improvements

- several fatal crashes have been fixed (‘System.OutOfMemoryException’, ‘CladeDiagram.CollideBranches’, ‘UIManager.Paused_Export_Update’),
- the method for addressing problems when the game is minimised or graphics card is lost has been improved,
- built-in troubleshooting for some start-up problems (running from the zip file, running from Program Files, running on computer with unsupported graphics card) has been added

Aesthetic Adjustments

- Procedural texturing: creatures now have different top, side and underbelly textures, giving them a more distinct appearance and more recognisable body covers.
- Custom textures: beaks, claws, teeth and mouths now have their own (appropriately horrifying) textures, blended into the triplanar texturing.
- Fur: Fuzzy wuzzy was a bear, fuzzy wuzzy had no hair, but the creature’s in Species do now. And they find bear meat tasty.
- Water reflections: They only reflect the skybox, but they significantly improve the appearance of the game nonetheless.
- A new Species ALRE logo. Now with infinity% more cladeogram and cycad leaf.
- Adjusted Tree Shaders make better use of dark greys and oranges, meaning trees have more colour variety and look more natural.
- An improved wasteland texture.
- Fixed that weird blue shading on trees when you pause the game (it still happens on grass).

Content Additions

- Body coverings: fur, feathers, scales and skins. Also squid skin, toad warts, echidna spines and human forearms (ewwww…).
- Leg shapes: from 6 in 0.6.0 to 20, meaning a much greater variety of knee shapes.
- Heads: a number of additions (and of course, the existing heads had to be adjusted to provide beak and mouth textures and fur polygons).
- A selection of the Body Part Voting Competition head types.


- Added an "Indirect" rover drive mode to the game options. Seriously, try it out. It's hilariously broken.

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Last minute stuff…

First, fixed an introduced bug that was giving canivores the ability to eat vegetation and removing herbivores ability to eat anything. A single missing “-” and herbivory stops being viable. Let’s hope that’s the last major error and the release is stable! (“Haaaaaahahahahahah!”)


Second, since I haven’t spotted any other bugs recently, I followed through on my threat suggestion to include an Indirect Rover Control Mode, where the rover uses it’s AI to attempt to drive in the direction you point the camera. The result is every bit as broken and insane as you’d expect, and it. is. GLORIOUS.


Finally, Species has adopted a new, less minimalistic logo.




The clade diagram was planned from the start: the symbolism there is an obvious match for Species. I find it amusing how the game’s name correlates with a mass extinction, but then again I’m easily amused.


The cycad leaf was more a case of Throw It In: it was originally going to just be the middle arc, but that looked too much like a planet. While that wouldn’t have been a bad representation of the games’ scope, it’s too reminiscent of space and science fiction in general.


I was about to delete it when I threw some fronds on it on a whim, and liked the result. And the additional symbolism is nice: cycads are an ancient clade*, evocative of prehistory, nature and dinosaurs. All good evolutionary stuff.


We’re still on track to release 0.6.1 on February 1. 🙂



*footnote: if anyone uses the term “living fossil” I will personally inject live cockatoo’s into their bloodstream.** I generally don’t do this because it’s a bugger to find a syringe big enough, but I’ll make an exception.


**footnote: don’t worry, it doesn’t hurt the birds. It’s actually fairly close to how they reproduce in nature (they’re Australian).




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Species 0.5.0 is out!

Species 0.5.0 is out, and with a second alpha release under our belt we are now a totally professional games development outfit- pfffhahahahah I can’t say that with a straight face.

I do, however, feel like we’ve reached a milestone. 0.5.0 introduces several massive new systems (including temperature, grazing, 3d trees and a water plane) and dramatically changes the look, feel and scale of the game. It’s also a lot less clunky and a lot more streamlined than 0.4.1 was, and the evolution itself is much more interesting and unpredictable than before thanks to tweaks and bug fixes.

Get it here:

It’s still an alpha release, of course. It still has it’s fair share of bugs and oddities, and a long way to go. But we’re on our way.


Left-click to select a Creatures or Species, or Use the Selected Tool.
Use the buttons on the UI (or C/X/Z) to switch between Creature/Species/Ecosystem Selection Modes.
Use the Details And Statistics Button (or Tab) to discover more about the selected creature, species or world.
Use the buttons in the top-left (or ~, 1, 2 or 3) to set the Time Accelleration

RTS Camera
– Pan: WASD, Up/Down/Left/Right, or move the mouse cursor to the edges of the screen
– Rotate camera: Q/E, or Right-click and Drag
– Zoom: Scroll the Mousewheel, Shift/Ctrl, or Page Up / Page Down

FPS Camera
– Move: WASD, Up/Down/Left/Right
– Rotate Camera: Right-click and Drag.
– Toggle Flight: Press Spacebar
– Rise/Fall: Q/E.
– Sprint: Hold Shift.

Orbital Camera (activates in Creature Detail Mode)
– Rotate camera: Right-click and Drag
– Zoom: Scroll the Mousewheel, Shift/Ctrl, or Page Up / Page Down

New Features

Biomes (x23)
– Now each with a distinct ground texture, grass billboard, and vegetation type.
– Based on a variable fertility/temperature map, continually updated in real time.
– Biomes include snow, swamps, forests and lava plains.

– 3d Instanced models (thanks Jade!)
– Edible foliage (because only lollypops uniformally decrease in size as you eat them)
– More realistically scaled trees. (creatures can now walk under the tree’s)
– Hereditable tree simulation.
– Tree’s influence biomes.

– Biome-specific Billboard grass (purdy!)

Water Plane
– Creatures float, and swim at 1/3rd their normal movement speed.
– Has a heavy influence on fertility.
– Water replaces the crater in prevent

– Player triggered only, for now.
– Temperature (enables global warming and ice ages)
– Fertility (enables droughts)
– Water height (enables floods)

– Grassy biomes are grazable, providing a secondary food-source for herbivores.

– 5 tracks, set to play randomly with 3 minutes of quiet between each track.

Species Names
– Species now have randomly generated names, (with genuine bio-latin-gibberish!)
– The blank slate slugworms are now officially known as Primum Specium.
– Names mutate during a speciation. (closely related species will have similar names)

New World Page
– Pretty new biome-compatible preview map
– Creature-type Preview Thumbnail
– A variety of new options, including statistic modifiers, vegetation growth parameters and diet efficiencies.

Other features
– Simulation Time tracked. (because everyone likes knowing how much time they’ve wasted)
– Revive Button
– Species List (w/ populations) visible on Ecosystem page.
– Flash of red text when creature hardcap is reached.
– A number of new head types.
– etc.

Tweaks and Fixes

– Explainy Tooltips
– Redundant selection-mode buttons
– New players should be able to find their feet a lot faster. (hint: bottom of your legs)

Fat Torso Mutation Bias
– Fixed.
– Creatures now evolve into a much greater variety of forms. (this is honestly one of the biggest fixes )

Thin Legs
– Increase speed, but come with a stamina cost
– Vice versa for thick legs

Facial Feature Mutation
– fixed an issue that was suppressing the expression of facial features (Species: now with even more hideously surreal faces!)

Meatpile/Corpse size
– Smaller on both counts. (RIP my massive fields of meat. You will be missed)



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