June Builds – Map Upgrades, Retro Rendering, Crime Features, and More!

New Live Builds are now available, combining all our work for month of June. We managed to get a lot done this month, even making a break into 0.8 with new crime features. Let’s start breaking it all down.

Improved Travel Map Search (Pango)

Some of the randomly named locations across the Illiac Bay can be challenging to search for. Either the name is very long like “Bleeding Redeemer of Kynareth” or just plain weird like “Old Barbyvyra’s Farm”, and players would sometimes need to switch back and forth between quest log and map screens before they could perfectly enter enough of the location name for search to work.

Those days are over with Pango’s most welcome upgrade to search in the travel map. Now you can just enter any part of the name, you don’t even need to spell it quite right, and the search will find all the closest matching locations. Look what happens when I mangle “Old Barbyvyra’s Farm” to just “barbv”.

 

First hit is exactly what I’m searching for, along with a reasonable number of other matches. If you enter enough of the name perfectly like before, the location will be selected immediately without showing the above UI.

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May Builds – Lycanthropy

It’s almost the end of the month, which means a fresh round of Daggerfall Unity Live Builds. May comes bearing the full lycanthropy feature from curse through to cure. If you’re the kind of Daggerfall player who just loves to wolf out (or tusk out if you dig more on wereboars) then this update is for you! Note that some spoilers are below for how lycanthropy operates and the paths to curing or managing it.

Lycanthropy

If you tangle with a stray werewolf or wereboar while out adventuring, there’s a small chance (0.6%) that you will become inflicted by their same curse. Unlike other infections, this one will bypass your normal disease resistance unless you happen to already be a vampire or lycanthrope. On the first evening after infection, you will have a dream about a “man who is less than a man”.

If you see this dream, you have just three days to find a temple healer or cure yourself through magical means. If you let the disease run its course, you’ll be cursed to hunt the innocent once per month and will be forced to shapechange when either moon is full.

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April Builds – Enchantment System

New live builds are now available for the month of April. This release brings a completed item maker UI along with an Enchantment system to drive it all behind the scenes. In this post, I’ll break down some of the new features around enchanting without going too deep into the technical side of things. If you’d like a more technical primer on magic in Daggerfall Unity check out the Magic & Effects Back-End post from last year.

If you have an existing character with “on equip” type enchantments, I recommend unequipping then equipping those magical items again after upgrading to latest version. This will ensure any of the old intermediate effects are deactivated and the new effects are activated correctly.

Item Maker UI

This is the front-end we’re all familiar with. It is here, through the magical power of menus, that new enchanted items are forged. Select your item, add some powers, balance them out with a few side-effects, and give the item a cool name. Then provided you have the gold, a new magic item with all your custom settings will be added to your inventory.

 

There’s not much more to say about the item maker. While it’s the main feature of this release, everything is fairly utilitarian and most of you are probably familiar with this UI from classic. I’ve just made a few tweaks like adding scroll bars and proper text clipping, and fixed a few minor bugs from classic. The really interesting stuff is what’s happening behind the item maker UI with the Enchantment system offering all these powers and side-effects for use.

I also want to thank Hazelnut for his earlier work on the item maker UI layout. I could just get stuck in to wiring everything up without the rather manual process of mapping out buttons and list boxes. It was great to skip that this time, so thank you Hazelnut!

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March Builds Part 2

Just as March was coming to a close, a second round of Live Builds landed for the month. This is primarily a bug-fix release, but thanks to our amazing contributors there’s new stuff too!

Artifact Progress

Some great progress has been made around artifacts lately. There are fixes to their appearance and equipment placement, a new console command to spawn any artifact, and even decent progress on the bespoke effects that make artifacts so unique. I won’t cover the artifacts in great detail here, so check out the UESP Daggerfall Artifacts page for more information about them.

 

Wabbajack (Numidium)

Wabbajack is a magical staff imbued with the chaos of Sheogorath. Striking an enemy will randomly transform it into another type of enemy. This might turn a powerful foe into a relatively harmless rat. If you’re lucky.

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March Builds – Faster Terrain, New Spells, Bug Fixes, QoL Improvements

This article is a bit overdue, it’s for the new Live Builds that dropped on March 03, which in turn is a slightly delayed February build. There’s even another round of March builds coming up with mostly bugfixes, so it’s long past time to write up the change log for early March.

Terrain Performance Enhancements (Hazelnut/Nystul)

This one started in January after Nystul backported some optimisations from his Distant Terrain mod into the default terrain generator. Then Hazelnut added multi-core support for terrain generation so that several computationally heavy tasks could be completed in parallel. That’s a short summary of what was an awesome collaboration with lots of ideas and work being bounced around. And for what turned into almost a complete overhaul of terrain generation, it didn’t cause any major issues, a testament to the skill and dedication of those involved.

Once everything was in place, time to generate each terrain tile dropped roughly in half. This means the world loads more quickly after travel, loading a game, or exiting a dungeon. It’s a huge improvement for overworld explorers and users of Tedious Travel mod (which also received some optimisations around the same time when Hazelnut spotted a timestep issue).

If you use a terrain mod (Distant Terrain, Mountains & Hills), you’ll need to update them for compatibility with March builds.

Sunset screenshot by King of Worms on forums

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January Builds – Vampirism, Spell Icons, More Magic Stuff, New Quest Actions, and More!

It’s time for a fresh round of Live Builds for January 2019. The last month has seen a lot of progress across a wide variety of systems, so rather than waste time on an intro. let’s get right into it.

Vampirism

The full loop of Daggerfall-styled vampirism is now in the game from curse all the way through to cure. Each time you’re mauled by a vampire, you have a 0.6% chance of contracting the disease that will transform your character into one of their kind. Some time after being infected, your rest will be plagued with bad dreams. Unless you like fangs and late-night shopping, this would be a good time to find a temple and cure yourself of diseases.

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