THE THUNDER UPDATE
New Merc: Thunder
Thunder tells anyone who'll listen (and you really have no choice, THE DUDE'S LOUD) that he's ex-Spetsnaz. He's kind of vague on precisely which unit, or where he served, but he's so useful under fire that nobody gets too worked up. His English really is very good, if heavily accented. In fact, no one has ever actually heard him speak or seen him read Russian, including Sparks, who definitely does. Her theory? A lot of passports suddenly became available in the chaos that followed the Dirty Bomb attacks, providing some with an irresistible chance for a clean slate... So, he's Thunder and he's Russian. Got it? Good.
Thunder works best as the first person into the fray to shield his allies with his massive body. He's no slouch on offense either, as he can clear a room with a combination of LMG fire and a party favor with a nasty kick...
Thunder's lone ability is more than enough to knock his enemies senseless. Cook and throw them like any other grenade, and they will detonate with an intense flash and concussive blast, rendering his victims helpless long enough for his team to deal with. Thunder even found a way to include an electronic scrambling effect with each explosion; any Deployable objects in the area of the explosion will be briefly disabled as well, incapable of shooting, healing or blowing themselves up.
New Primary Weapon: MK46 Light Machine Gun
The MK46: For when you just need a little more dakka. This Light Machine Gun holds more rounds than anything but Rhino's minigun and has a fearsome rate of fire. While not as accurate as an Assault Rifle, Thunder's never seemed to mind. After all, if it's worth shooting once, it's worth shooting many, many times.
It's been clear through player feedback and gameplay data that some Loadout Cards are significantly more popular than others. While our past focus has been on weapons, we’re now working through many Augments to help balance them out. Our ideal end goal is that, while still appealing to individual playstyles, each Loadout Card should be equally desirable overall.
With that in mind, we've begun by improving the following Augments:
- Cool - Now doubles the time it takes Mounted MGs to overheat (from 1.5x)
- Big Ears - Now enemy footsteps and other appropriate noises are 50% louder to you (from 30%)
- Untrackable - Turrets, Mines and other deployable defenses now react 35% more slowly to your presence (from 30%)
- Flying Pig - Now also increases Long Jump distance by 10% as well as removing falling damage
- Enigma - Now reduces duration of being spotted by 60% (from 50%)
- Sneaky - Now reduces the amount of sound you generate when running by 50% (from 30%)
- Springy - Now also reduces Long Jump penalties as well as penalties for consecutive jumps
- Quick Draw - Updated the text to better reflect the functionality: "30% faster weapon switching"
- Quick Charge augment no-longer allows Sparks to fire extra shots with her REVIVR and only reduces the charge time as intended
- Reduced the collision box on Proximity mines so they sit more flush with the environment
New User Flow
Your feedback, through the new Feedback Tool and across community channels, has helped us to get new players up to speed a little more quickly. Pop-ups now describe features as they're unlocked, so players know what they've achieved and what they're in for next!
We've adjusted the rewards for the first few levels of play. When a player reaches Level 2 (after their first match), they now get a New Operative case - An Equipment Case that only contains Loadout Cards for Aura and Skyhammer. The resulting Loadout Card can be used in the next match for greater clarity on how they work within the game.
The credits usually gifted at Level 2 are being added to the Level 4 reward, for 25,000 Credits all at once. This gives players enough (or nearly enough) Credits to permanently unlock a Merc.
- In Objective Mode, the base spawn wave timers are now more greatly impacted by the player count on each team. This is to help counteract imbalanced teams and maintain the intensity of the game between different match sizes.
- For example, teams with 8 players now have a 30s spawn wave, 4 players have a 15s spawn wave and 2 players have a 7.5s spawn wave
- Updated the Public Skill Rating system (used for balancing Casual games) to include a longer game history and exclude shorter matches
- Added Voice Receive Volume to front end Settings menu
- Removed Win & Loss stats from Profile page due to them reporting inaccurate values
- Added Steam DLC link to the Store
- Improved appearance of completed Missions in dropdown menu
- Added the status of Daily Play Bonuses to the Quick Join screen:
- Updated Knife attack audio
- Continued work on the audio mix to prioritize important gameplay elements
- Updated the level lighting to improve player guidance throughout Dome
- Continued collision, performance and bug fixing on Dome
- Continued collision, performance and bug fixing on Overground
Notable Bug Fixes
- Fixed bug where players could spawn with the incorrect Merc for their chosen Loadout Card
- Fixed several bugs with Mounted Machine Guns by reworking their behavior
- Fixed bug where the EV was almost immune to Molotov fire damage
- Fixed bug where the wrong objective icons would show on some loading screens
- Fixed bug where players spotted by IR Goggles weren't visible through Smoke when spectating
- Fixed bug where healing audio wasn't always playing for Healing Stations
- Fixed bug where revive audio wasn't playing for spectators
- Fixed bug where Rhino's Minigun firing audio could sometimes not play
- Fixed bug with missing reload audio when ironsighting with the Ahnuld-12
- Fixed bug where the first person SMG-9 reload audio was heard by other players
- Fixed bug where Medics could obtain Revive Badges by killing and reviving their team-mates with Friendly Fire enabled
- Fixed bug where the next map wasn't always highlighted in lobbies
- Fixed bug where winning map would not be chosen or displayed correctly in pre-game lobby
- Fixed bug where the Blishlok obituary icon wasn't showing correctly
- Fixed bug where Phantom's Refractive Armor wasn't disabled when planting C4 in Execution
- Fixed numerous text bugs throughout the game