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Game News and Developments

Server Issues

Apologies for the server outage for the past few days, this is due to a hardware fault in our hosted server. We are now moving to a new server hosted by Ellyll over the coming week, so maybe after we move the server won't hang for 10 seconds any time somebody tries to use an obscure action.

Version 2.7.2

Only a point release, but all sorts of things to report!

  • Over 200 bugs, typos and feature requests dealt with!
  • A new mission, Lab! This is an easy one, but everyone must do it if they want to get...
  • CYBERNETICS! A range of new equipment with various varieties available across the game worlds that can let you see in the dark, boost your combat prowess or resilience, and more... read info implants for more information.
  • No more magic free commbadges for Warrant Officers and above. Buy a commbadge implant instead.
  • Beasts of burden: your carrying capacity is now substantially increased when you're mounted on an animal or vehicle.
  • You can now more conveniently buy and sell items that are too heavy for you to carry, like motorbikes.
  • The new liquids system is largely in place. No cocktails just yet though...
  • We have a new, experimental emote system, which is a bit easier to use than myact and is available to all players. Read info emote for more information.
  • The parser now understands that "examine foo's sofa" means examine the Sofa that Foo is sitting on.
  • You can now jump into, onto or over some objects...
  • Commanders can buy a new Officer's uniform, which they can use even after demotion due to new missions being added, etc. Its very nice.
  • The Zoo and the old Combat 1 and Combat 2 simulations have been removed. A new Zoo is under construction on Eden, however...

    Zub has retired due to his long absense from the mud. plett on the other hand has been returned to captainhood after actually doing some things, possibly by accident. So that's nice.

    Still no player-owned spacecraft or the updated spacesuit system yet. It'll come, though!

    Version 2.7.1

    More small fixes and world improvements.

  • We've made our beta webclient, Chrysalis, available to the public. It is still a work in progress, but feel free to try it out if you're feeling brave!
  • We now have slightly better support for the Mudlet client, which amongst other problems has terribly broken compression handling.
  • There's now a reward of 50 credits for the first time you complete each of the 5 training simulations. If you've already completed them, you won't get any reward, sorry!
  • There's an additional Crewman-level mini-mission available on the station - Robot repairs. An easy mission point for everyone!
  • The Combat mission is now worth 2 points to better reflect its difficulty. If you've already done this mission, you'll be awarded the extra point automatically and may gain a rank as a result!
  • Dr. Washington on the Cryosphere can now sell you ‘antibooze’ pills for instant sobriety even following near-fatal doses of alcohol.
  • Crimes committed on French soil will no longer result in your arrest and fining by British police should you escape back to Empire space, and vice versa. The police of all nations will punish acts of piracy, however.
  • The parser now understands stuff like “remove knickers from head”.
  • There is now a bugstodo command, which is shown in brief to players and staff every now and then if there are bugs that they should be paying attention to. If you've submitted a bug, typo or feature request that was fixed, you should verify it was fixed correctly!
  • We now support a new @foo syntax for all commands that accepted targets of the form foo>, such as sing, say and the communications channels like intercom.
  • You can now drool, dribble and snore in your sleep.
  • Commanders now get to use (amongst other things) the echo command, see a whole load more logmessages about what's going on in the game, get to see more information about the game world around them and can use the dynreset command.
  • You can now examine and interact with people's outmost items of clothing and held items, in the same way you could already interact with their weapons.
  • setcol now accepts background colour codes for non-channel custom colours. If you really wanted objects to be shown as magenta text on a yellow background, well now you can indulge yourself.
  • You can once again steal things from other people. Most jurisdictions frown on this sort of behaviour, however.

    We've also dealt with over 100 bugs and feature requests, and there are new missions, spoilers and privacy policy files you should probably read.

    We're sorry to announce that plett and &_D&_az are stepping down as Captains.

    More to come soon, possibly including a revamped spacesuit system and maybe even the long-delayed promise of cybernetic implants and player-owned spacecraft!

    Version 2.7

    Another update with more technical changes than content improvements, but it isn't all bad.

  • We've a new Basic Combat Simulation, by Decroix.
  • Commbadges are now considered emergency equipment, so you can get them for free from every hospital.
  • We've upgraded our scripting language to Lua 5.2.2.
  • We now have a whole new memory management system that might just make the game engine a little more reliable, but I guess time will tell...

    Decroix has been granted the rank of Captain (Retired), in return for his work on the new training sim but doesn't get a full Captain rank given his long absense :(

    And that's your lot (there are more interesting changes if you're an admin or developer, honest!)
    Hopefully we'll have some more new game content before Spring!

    This version of the Cryosphere brought to you by the letters R and C and the number 189.

    Version 2.6.2

    An update in under 3 months? Who'd have thought it? Again, lots of work on the codebase that you might not appreciate now, but there are a handful of shiny new things:

  • The Backwards mission is back! A simulator repair job with a twist...
  • We now have civilian jobs that you can do for credits but no mission points. If you're stranded on a foreign planet and can't afford the ticket back, these'll help.
  • Cargo flights have resumed to Livingstone, New Southampton, Eden and New Lyon. Those starports have also been significantly expanded to handle the new traffic.
  • You can now drag some items that are too heavy to carry... corpses, motorbikes, large ladders and so on.
  • The Basic and Intermediate Combat simulations are now free for everyone, not just cadets.
  • Warrant Officers and above can now access a new message board in the Officer's Club. Keep an eye on it for lucrative testing opportunities!
  • We now support blindfolds, earplugs and gags, if you're in to that sort of thing.
  • If you've been turned into a duck by a senior officer, be careful flying over water because when you turn back, you might not be able to swim...
  • You can no longer sit, stand or mount people who are sitting, standing or mounted on you.
  • A few actions have been retired because no-one used them, and a few common myacts have been promoted to real actions useable by all players. Say goodbye to the likes of asmile and tm, and hello to such delights as jig, stab and yank.
  • The matcher now prioritises unworn and unwielded equipment. So if you're carrying a uniform and wearing a uniform and you type throw uniform, you'll throw the unworn one.
  • Next time you're at the beach, why not go for a paddle?
  • ...and plenty more bugfixes, tweaks, improvements and minor features!

    The Combat system is long overdue for an update, so we've started improving that, too. You can now wield two weapons at once if you wanted, though there's no benefit to doing so yet! You can also now hold shields instead of wearing them, letting you use shields even with bulky clothing like spacesuits and the like. On the downside, you can't wield things you are wearing anymore (sorry) and it is now a rather harder to raise your combat score to superhuman levels.

    The justice system has been given a bit of a tweak, too. Military staff will take a dim view of you being naked and on duty, and gendarmes in New Lyon can have you deported if you're caught in the city without suitable paperwork.

    Version 2.6.1

    By our previous standards, an almost immediate update to 2.6! This is largely a maintenance release with various bugfixes and performance tweaks, but there are a few new features for you all. Amongst other things we have:

  • The Combat 3 simulation is now worth a single mission point to better reflect its level of challenge. Everyone who has completed the simulation already will have been given the mission point automatically.
  • Better equipment handling in simulations. You can now feel free to use any food, drink or medical gear you bring into a sim, and it will be restored to you when you end the program.
  • Tracking of deaths and kills in score. The consider command is more detailed too.
  • Spacesuits now have openable visors. Vacuum exposure is now significantly more dangerous, so don't try throwing yourself out of an airlock! You'll also find that in space, no-one can hear you scream. Or yell, or sing, or whatever.
  • If you had a spacesuit in your inventory before the update, it is now probably broken. Take it to an admin for a refund or repair.
  • You can no longer quit from hazardous locations like deserts, arctic ice caps, vacuum, infernos and so on... you'll be warned if you try, but if you use quit really you'll die and leave the game. Also, if you quit from a small spacecraft, you'll log back in at the spaceport you departed from.
  • Transmogrification now affects emote and echo too. Mobiles have also stopped being able to understand the speech of gagged or transmogrified players.
  • The time and timezone commands are now much more user friendly. If you have a non-UK timezone, you'll be warned if you're logging in when all us Brits are asleep and unable to chat or help.
  • You can now change the meaning of single character command shortcuts like ' and : by using the shortcmd command, if you wanted.

    And that's mostly all, folks. Hopefully we'll have some more missions for you next time!

    Version 2.6

    Well, development has slowed up of late since we all grew up and got jobs, but it didn't stop completely thanks largely to the efforts of Serriaš and Gareth. Version 2.6 is one of the biggest sets of changes since the Cryosphere was first released! Many of the changes are behind-the-scenes, but there's plenty of stuff for players to appreciate too. Many bugs have been squashed, mobiles respond to more things, many places have been decorated and expanded.

    All of our missions have had their points values rebalanced (rewards have mostly gone up) and the mission points requirements for ranks Warrant Officer 1st Class and above have changed. This may affect your rank slightly, but most people will remain at the same level. We hope the new award levels better reflect the difficulty (or ease!) of completing our missions. We now also give you some idea of the complexity, extent and danger associated with a mission in its minfo page. Explanations of the difficulty ratings can be found in the difficulty info file.

    The Medical mission has been given a little bit of an overhaul, and is now worth 3 mission points. If you've already done the mission, you'll be credited with the extra point (which may mean a promotion!) and no-one will have to redo the mission unless they really want to. Feel free to ask! Remember the reward for completing it is now ¢600.

    We are slowly rewriting various minimissions to make them available in various locations, so far Gareth has extended Bulb to Skinner and several parts of Eden, but many more rewrites are planned.

    Simulations generally don't strip you naked anymore... appropriate clothing/equipment will be simulated for you. Which is nice.

    The habitat on Eden has now been extensively redesigned and rebuilt. The city of New Lyon has also undergone a bit of re-engineering, and the activities of the New Southampton Mining Company are now much more obvious on Skinner. The Barane skyfarm complex has been closed to public access, however.

    There's a new commline for Warrant Officer and above, officer. Furthermore, commissioned officers of Midshipman rank and above get access to a new set of high quality equipment. Our Commanders also get a whole load of new privileges, but you'll need to complete all our missions before you find out what they are!

    We now keep track of many more things in our logs. Records of mission completion times (best and worst), deaths whilst attempting missions and number of successful completions are all visible in the output of minfo. You can also get a statement from the bank telling you where all your money went. There's also a record of you progress to tell you how quickly you've been moving towards Commander rank.

    Spacesuits are now a little more sophisticated... but only a little. The safety systems won't let you strip in a vacuum, for example. More soon!

    Fleeing from combat is no longer risk free... your opponent can stab you in the back as you escape! be extra careful. On the other hand, insurance now does a better job of compensating you for death by environmental conditions such as vacuum or fire. The compare command is a little more versatile too, letting you compare bits of armour.

    Hopefully we'll have a more frequent update cycle in the future! Much planning and work has already been done on new features and we hope to bring you things like: The return of the Backwards mission in a new and improved form, an improved version of Ionstorm, Cybernetic Implants for players, along with several new types of minimission and a more detailed and expanded universe to explore.

    This version of the Cryosphere brought to you by the number 5 and the letter L. Many, many thanks to our testers Bingo, Charli, Ellyll, Sunblaze, Picayune, Decroix, Navarre, Arianna and anyone else we may have forgotten. Read the credits and mcredits info files for a complete list of contributors.

    As principle developer, Serrķaš has now been promoted to the Chief of Staff rank, and is therefore the law now. Our server administrator, webmonkey-in-chief and even occasional tester Ellyll has been promoted to Commodore. Sadly, several of our other senior officers are unable to help with the MUD much these days, and have been demoted. We thank &_D&_az, plett and Twiglet for the time they've given to the Cryosphere in the past, and hope they can help out again at some point in the future.

    See also: info oldnews for archived game news items.