HLL Patch #9 Live Now & Developer Briefing #51!

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Hi everyone!

Welcome to Patch 9! This ones a big one with extra information, so we’ve combined it into Developer Briefing #51 too.

Today we’re excited to launch a large number of fixes and feature implementations in this patch, so thank you all for your feedback and patience whilst we worked on it.

The end of the year is always a pressured time and here at Black Matter the team is hard at work - both on announced and unannounced features. We’re now preparing for a sizable Update 4 launch in December, but to hold you over we wanted to release a large number of fixes to serious issues in order to make your experience on the battlefield as good as it can be as we reach the holiday season.

In slightly different news, we’d love it if you’d support us by voting for Hell Let Loose in the “Better with Friends” category in the Steam Awards! It’d be a pretty cool medal for us all to pin on our collective chest!


The Patch Notes

Features

Loadouts

We’re beginning our implementation of the Loadout system by adding a new unlockable loadout for the Officer. We’ll be reviewing feedback on these as we add additional loadouts for each role.

You can expect further Loadouts to arrive in future patches and updates!


In-game Loadout and Customisation Selection



Players can now alter their customisations and loadouts in-game per role. This is to enable you to choose map-appropriate attire where necessary.


Reserved Slots

Community server hosts and administrators will now be able to offer reserved slots to their community members.


Important Bug Fixes

Thanks to the brilliant community support (seriously, you’re awesome) in testing on our designated test servers, we believe that we have finally fixed the experience bug. However, due to it happening in rare and prolonged play on large population servers, it has been hard to get 100% final reproduction on the absolute fix. We have not experienced it in QA since this fix, but we are hesitant to promise the community an absolute fix without being able to finally sign it off in a testing environment. As such, we will be combing through community reports to make sure this is the end of it.

We have fixed an issue where players will wait in a queue, join, and then be kicked due to the server being full.


Offensive Gamemode

We’ve been monitoring the changes we implemented for the Offensive mode, and received resounding feedback that the intensity of the landing in the first sector was much closer to where it needed to be, but that the attackers were effectively being spawn-camped by Germans coming down onto the beach.

As a result, we’ve implemented “turn back” volumes that will now prohibit the defending force from progressing too far into the attackers spawn area (on Omaha, this means leaving the shingle wall and bunkers and walking down onto the sand).

Tl;dr - No spawn camping.


Customisation



Added many new US helmets to the cosmetics array. The majority are unlocked by increasing your Career level. Several are unlocked by increasing the Medic and Officer level -
  • Winter Painted Medic M1
  • 1st Ranger M1
  • 2nd Ranger M1
  • 5th Ranger M1
  • US Navy D-Day M1
  • D-Day Tactical Stripe M1
  • D-Day Engineer's M1
  • 3rd Infantry M1
  • Padre's M1





We've also added Winter uniform for Axis Officer!


SFX
  • All grenades now have collision audio for when they hit the ground.
  • Audio collisions for US and German Supply Drops.
  • Implemented and refined the sound of a bullet striking you (both in the body and head) to better explain your death.

RCON
  • Enabled the creation of reserved slots using the RCON tool.

HUD/UI
  • Fixed: On-screen HUD elements now position themselves correctly when using an ultra-wide monitor.
  • Fixed: The spacing on the pause menu while in-game is inconsistent.
  • Fixed: When viewing the loadouts, the values on the tooltips of the binoculars and the watch are inconsistent between roles.
  • Fixed: "Show/Hide Chat" text overlaps certain menu titles.
  • Fixed: UI element for building constructibles is not removed when mantling or vaulting.
  • Fixed: Role description does not refresh to the top when changing role.
  • Fixed: Make a friendly occupied tank green like the unit color for infantry.
  • Fixed: 'Kicked due to high ping' text format is inconsistent with other notifications.
  • Fixed: [Omaha] While playing as a German soldier, Strong Points that are not active do not display on the Strong Point UI when inside a Strong Point.
  • Fixed: 'Your connection to the host has been lost.' text format is inconsistent with the other notifications display.
  • Fixed: On Omaha, the HUD displays "Sector on Cooldown" to players inside a sector that is captured.
  • Fixed: The "You killed yourself" death message does not display if the player cooks a frag grenade but does not throw it.

Gameplay Functionality
  • We have stopped enemy players building in your HQ sectors until the HQ sector itself can be captured. This means that players from the enemy team will not be able to mine vehicle spawns or build Engineer barricades to block in your vehicles unless the sector itself is in play.
  • The 'Switch Team' cool down timer will be in effect if the player opts to switch teams but returns to their previous team.
  • Officers are now awarded XP when players spawn on their Outposts (instead of when they are placed.) This is to reduce cheesing of endlessly replacing OPs.
  • Added player markers translucency slider option.
  • Adjusted Garand iron-sight appearance to make the sight picture clearer. We understand that the community is in two minds about this, and will watch for feedback on this adjustment.
  • Set player name tag view distance to max by default for new players.
  • Added 30 extra seconds to the end of round summary screens in order to better parse information and debrief.
  • Capped proper ammo and equipment amounts so that using an ammo box won’t give you crazy surplus. We’ve also adjusted the Medic role to begin with a higher amount of bandages and morphine.

Visual Improvements
  • Fixed: Some US helmets have a noticeable drop off in LOD at a short range.
  • Fixed: Uniforms within the Barracks appear to be lower resolution than other assets within the menu.
  • Fixed: [Hurtgen] The German accents are missing on the 'Hurtgen Forest' title when opening up the map.
  • Updated some posters with more authentic versions.
  • Fixed: There is a graphical issue with the Omaha loading screen.
  • Fixed: Stretched polygons are visible when the German LMG wearing the Heer Summer Uniform goes into prone, critical or fatal stance.
  • Fixed: The in-game map compass is not orientated with the Player's HUD compass.
  • Fixed: [Omaha] Locked sectors that trigger the 'Turn back' state and respawn timer aren't clearly defined on the map.
  • Show player shadow in FPP in order to increase immersion and sense of self. This currently doesn’t look 100% perfect, however this has been implemented now as it will carry over to the new animation system (which will polish many of the visual issues currently present with this).

Omaha Beach
  • Fixed: Grass can be seen clipping through the house in sector G6.
  • Fixed: A floating haystack can be observed in a barn in sector A5.
  • Fixed: Some bunkers on Omaha are too dark for players to navigate around in.
  • Fixed: The character can walk on the wooden seedlings frames from the B5 area.
  • Fixed: The character displays an erratic movement when attempting to climb a trench from the H7 area.
  • Fixed: Misaligned piece of terrain within sector I6 of Omaha.
  • Fixed: Interior lighting is passing through a house in sector B7.
  • Fixed: Grass can be seen clipping through the house in sector F6.
  • Fixed: Grass can be seen clipping through the house in sector F7.
  • Fixed: A specific landscape poster is incorrectly rotated on the wall.
  • Fixed: A metal sheet is clipping through the wooden fence in sector F6.
  • Fixed: Grass can be seen clipping through the house in sector F5.
  • Fixed: Sandbag clipping through a trench within sector I3.
  • Fixed: Multiple rocks are floating above terrain in I6.
  • Fixed: A stone wall is clipping into a trench in sector H5.
  • Fixed: The character remains stuck upon reaching a specific location on the map border.
  • Fixed: A specific House in F3 has a noticeable LoD change at 47m.
  • Fixed: Terrain is clipping through the wooden floor of one of the beach huts in sector I5.
  • Fixed: Incorrect interior reflection present within a particular building.
  • Fixed: The Omaha tactical map is noticeably offset.
  • Fixed: The bulbs in street lamps do not appear to be on but have a visible light source.
  • Fixed: On Omaha, windows with dark glass leave concrete bullet decals when shot.
  • Fixed: Multiple sets of stairs in F5 are missing collision.
  • Fixed: There is a stone platform at the top of a stairway that has no collision in sector F4.
  • Fixed: An exterior pipe can be seen clipping into a building interior in grid square F5.
  • Fixed: Areas of hillside terrain in H7 have visibly low resolution textures at short range.
  • Fixed: It can be difficult for the player to stand out of the hole at the top of the stone bunkers.
  • Fixed: The underside of a specific cliff bush is visible.
  • Fixed: The player can clip their camera through the terrain in certain areas and see under the map.
  • Fixed: A pile of rock and wood situated in I5 is partially missing collision with the character while in prone position.
  • Fixed: The small stone bunkers have the incorrect collision applied and does not allow the player to enter or exit the asset.
  • Fixed: One wooden shack placed between stone houses is missing collision in sector F5.
  • Fixed: Misaligned trench within sector A5 of Omaha.
  • Fixed: Walking up/down a specific set of stairs causes noticeable camera jitter.
  • Fixed: Inaccessible building within sector B7 of Omaha.
  • Fixed: The player can partially clip through raised sand in the I3-I8 sectors from the Omaha Beach.
  • Fixed: Misaligned terrain in sector D3.
  • Fixed: LOD issues present on a house in sector D5 of the map.
  • Fixed: Multiple collision issues present in sector D6 of the map.
  • Fixed: In sector D7, certain building/road icons on the map doesn't match up with assets in the in-game world.
  • Fixed: Misplaced wooden archways near one of the stone bunkers in sector H7.
  • Fixed: There is a visible seam on one of the walls in sector I4.
  • Fixed: Noticeable frame drop within sector H4.
  • Fixed: The player is not able to climb through either window of a shed located in sector I5.
  • Fixed: Invisible collision present in D7.
  • Fixed: 2 large invisible collisions present in I4.
  • Fixed: Invisible collisions present in F3.
  • Fixed: A wall model is missing collision in F3.

Foy
  • Fixed: Snow textures have been observed as pixelated along the edges
  • Fixed: Tanks are unable to drive through some fences within Foy

Utah
[/list]
  • Fixed: Beach logs low poly models appear floating on Utah Beach.
  • Fixed: No player collision on the middle of the metallic fences that surround hay stacks.
  • Fixed: The character remains stuck upon reaching inside a metal construction from the B5 sector.
  • Fixed: Multiple visual issues present in sector A7 of the map.
  • Fixed: Players can become stuck inside a small building with no exit in sector A5 after deploying at an Outpost/Garrison positioned near it.

Hurtgen
  • Fixed: Players can get stuck between boxes and a wall in sector E6 of Hurtgen
  • Fixed: A floating light switch and wiring can be found in sector I5 of the map
  • Fixed: Smoke can be seen through other smoke when looking at it from inside of The Scar

Animations

We are currently focusing on all animation work in our experimental animation branch. As a result we are only fixing system-wide issues and are avoiding issues specific to our current implementation.

Fixed: Cooking a German grenade while running then halting movement will result in the incorrect FPP animation


Optimisations

Fixed adjacency and index buffers


SMDM
  • Fixed: The German Medium Tank can be driven onto the crashed plane in E6
  • Fixed: There is an invisible collision in sector E1
  • Fixed: Invisible collision present in sector E10
  • Fixed: Invisible collision present in sector E5

Crashes

Fixed: The user may experience a blue screen system crash after the EAC boot flow when launching the title


Bugs Fixed
  • Fixed: The player is able to place anti personnel mines inside wooden logs.
  • Fixed: Multiple bunkers have a narrow doorway preventing players from walking through.
  • Fixed: The gaps in sandbag walls have extended bullet collision.
  • Fixed: [Omaha] The countdown to turn back will not dismiss itself if the sectors are unlocked while it is on-screen.
  • Fixed: Turn Back timer resets when the user moves between two locked sectors.
  • Fixed: 'All Servers' and 'Favourites' headings do not highlight correctly while searching for servers.
  • Fixed: [Omaha] The player is able to place Anti Personnel mines under water.
  • Fixed: Supply Drop flight path does not scale correctly with the magnification of the map.
  • Fixed: Tank can still be repaired when the wrench is no longer aimed at it.
  • Fixed: Sniper Rifles suppress team killed players.
  • Fixed: On the Loadout, the Browning M1919 and MG42 display an incorrect ammunition count on their tooltips.
  • Fixed: "Vote to Kick" and "Vote for Map" both go on cooldown whenever either is initiated
  • Fixed: The audio for the sliders will continue to play if the cursor continues to be dragged past its limit.
  • Fixed: On Omaha, the "Vote For Map" and "Vote to Kick" cooldowns reset to 10min when a column is captured.
  • Fixed: Rotating an Outpost/Garrison into an area it cannot be placed while it is being built results in the construction audio to carry on till completion.
  • Fixed: Player does not take damage when throwing a grenade under a hedgehog and stands on top of it.
  • Fixed: Firing at dead bodies with the Browning results in the dead bodies being moved un-realistically.
  • Fixed: The cooldown for rebuilding an Outpost after it has recently been dismantled occurs once per life.
  • Fixed: When friends join game with a friend, place them in the queue instead of attempting to skip the queue.
  • Fixed: Tanks begin to move erratically when they take damage while unoccupied
  • Fixed: [Omaha] Capture progress will not increase if the player is in the strongpoint when driving a tank.
  • Fixed: Players do not receive a notification if their request to join a Unit is rejected.
  • Fixed: No visual indication present on the 'Field Manual' search bar.
  • Fixed: Audio can still be heard and received from users with mic volume and voice volume on the lowest setting.
  • Fixed: [Omaha] The character is missing collision with the bottom of the moving boat if is located in deep waters.
  • Fixed: [Omaha] The German team can place Garrisons within 150m of their 3 starting Garrisons.
  • Fixed: When a player is banned for team killing, the global message states the player was kicked.
  • Fixed: The server queue is updated only after a player joins the queue.
  • Fixed: Swapping from a unit to Commander on the deployment screen requires two clicks of the 'Join as Commander' button.
  • Fixed: The user cannot always connect to a server with 90 ping on the first attempt, and will exit the server to a defunct enlist screen after a successful connection to said server.

In Testing
  • Sainte-Mère-Église German Offensive and Warfare Modes
  • Foy Offensive Mode and Visual Overhaul

Currently working on (non-exhaustive list, we just want to give you some idea)
  • Continuing HUD and UI updates.
  • Overhaul of Commander tactical map UI and HUD to improve and broaden functionality.
  • Implementation of full non-verbal communications systems.
  • Implementation of Recon vehicles for both teams, as well as fully fleshing out the Recon mechanics within the game to give proper purpose to Recon units at every level.
  • Implementation of US heavy tank variant.
  • Implementing mocap and making large changes to our TPP animation systems. These will result in a much more natural look and feel.
  • Our FPP experience - with a focus on gunplay - is being overhauled in a separate branch.
  • This is to both match our new TPP look, but also to greatly increase the fluidity of the FPP experience.
  • New customisation options for both forces.
  • Diving (performed by proning while sprinting). This is wrapped up with our FPP overhaul currently.
  • Bullet penetration.
  • Map balancing (addition of cover and other features in locations that are either boring or creating a tedious gameplay experience).
  • Wheeled vehicles.
  • Updating all audio and SFX. We’ve been testing reflections and different reverb volumes alongside all new weapon fire and reload sounds.

A gift to you and a first look at something new!

To celebrate our one year dev briefing anniversary, we’ve put together some customisation options to match the wintery experience we’re having in the Northern Hemisphere. Tune into the 52nd dev briefing next week to see how you can get your hands on them! (spoiler alert, they’re free!).


A 'cool' looking helmet.

Lastly, we know we’re always talking about the many maps in development. To pique your interest, we’d like to show you the first image from an as-yet unannounced map...




If you’re enjoying Hell Let Loose, you can help us by leaving us a review on Steam!

See you on the frontline!

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