Ahoy! Assemble the crew and sail the seven seas once more. As the relatively-sizable update hits the decks, it’s going bring with it a naval vessel that is truly a sight to behold. Being one of the largest vessels to date, the 50-Gun Frigate packs enough arsenal to make quick work of others at her broadsides.
Coastal sieges, rocketboats, a ton of roleplay-oriented features, rowable rowboats, a complete redesign of the Naval Battlefield game mode along with various gameplay mechanics and so much more! All packed in one relatively-sizable update.
Before you have a read of our lengthy blog post, do check out the trailer.
A New Vessel! The 50-Gun Frigate
Complimented with a well-organised and trained crew the 50-Gun Frigate based on the ‘La Proserpine’ is quite the sight to behold! Her sheer size and firepower will make other vessels think twice before exchanging broadsides. Unique to the vessel, the frigate also features two chasers at both its stern and bow.
Captains aboard this vessel must carefully assess the direction of the wind and ensure a favourable position. Even though the frigate’s arsenal on her gundeck alone makes one wish they had their foot on drier pastures when facing its broadsides, it is relatively weaker elsewhere.
If you do have to make a turn, raise her square-rigged sails as this will improve your manoeuvrability. A new user interface present atop the mini-map will help you distinguish the sails to raise and lower. Be sure to stay windward!
More Naval Vessels! Rocketboats
Continuing to add upon an already great selection of vessels to sail the high seas, the Rocketboat sees an introduction to Holdfast: Nations At War. Rocketboats will also come in especially handy during the bombardment of coastal fortifications. Work your way through the enemies’ defences and create a breach before the landing parties do their deed.
Load, ignite and fire away!
Rowable Rowboats! Lay Your Oars
Row, row, row! If push comes to shove and you need to abandon ship, you’ll often end up in a rowboat searching for a nearby ship to crew or attempting to board an enemy vessel. Up to four players can assist the crewman steering the rowboat with rowing the boat increasing the speed at which it travels.
Naval Warfront! Combined Naval & Coast
Speaking of coastal fortifications, as we’re sure you’re already aware, the Coastal Siege game mode is making a comeback! Fend off naval vessels and marine-filled rowboats with chain, round and grapeshot as they attempt to capture your fortified position. Muzzle-loaded firearms also see plenty of use in this game mode as the invaders close their distance to the shores.
The Naval Battlefield and Coastal Siege game modes will feature a combined front on the Naval Warfront official servers. Different scenarios will continue to iterate and provide for a unique experience.
South Sea Castle
A New Coastal Siege Map. Balamor Bay
More coastal siege goodness! As the game mode is making a comeback, we thought it best to introduce a new scenario for our long-time followers and new ones alike to enjoy. A lighthouse on Balamor Bay overlooks the oncoming invasion as the garrison must make their stand in defence of the fortification until the timer runs out.
Bridges on either side of the fortification prevent ships from sailing through. However, both of these bridges are destructible and if boats manage to pass through and encircle the fortification, the defenders must organise and bring some men to the rear.
Naval Battlefield. Gamemode Redesign
Having this game mode solely factor in which faction sunk the most ships didn’t make for an interesting dynamic. We’ve also received frequent feedback that engagements on sea weren’t the best they could be as players found it difficult to find a ship to spawn on after theirs was sunk. Thus, we decided to embark on a complete redesign of the Naval Battlefield game mode.
Now, crews that have sunk an enemy faction’s ship will be rewarded a set number of points depending on which enemy vessel was sunk. The lower the ship’s rate and the more guns it carries on its deck, the more points are rewarded. Larger naval vessels such as the 50-Gun Frigate and 13-Gun Brig-Sloop will gather your faction greater score if sunk than a simple Gunboat or Rocketboat.
Here’s a look at all the naval vessels in Holdfast: Nations At War. The team which gathers the most score by sinking ships or killing enemy crewman will become the victor.
50-Gun Frigate - Faction Score: 300
13-Gun Brig-Sloop - Faction Score: 100
8-Gun Schooner - Faction Score: 50
2-Gun Schooner - Faction Score: 30
Gunboat - Faction Score: 10
Rocketboat - Faction Score: 10
Ships and boats will also respawn shortly after they’re sunk enabling the crew that lost their vessel to re-join the round. Having to wait for the next round to join in the battle is now a thing of the past.
Naval Mechanics. Changes & Additions
We’ve undergone multiple changes to existing naval mechanics all aimed towards improving naval engagements. There’ll also be new ones coming into the flock to provide players with more opportunity to perform strategic manoeuvres and overcome their adversaries.
Protect The Stern
Be on the lookout for enemy vessels looking to gather a tactical advantage by manoeuvring behind your ship! Upwards to 30% damage of the overall ship’s health will be dealt if the stern is destroyed.
Fight With The Weather Gauge
Fighting with the weather gauge is of the utmost importance. Ships that stay in favour of the wind will have the upper hand as they can more quickly manoeuvre in and out of a strategically disadvantageous position.
First and foremost, we have increased the size of the wind indicator present on the minimap to aid players better distinguish the wind’s direction. As we’ve mentioned earlier in our blog post, if you do find yourself in a situation where you must make a turn into the wind, raise your square-rigged sails by pressing the number keys shown on the new user interface present atop the minimap. This will improve your manoeuvrability.
Each and every naval vessel sails differently from one another. Learning your way through their strengths and weaknesses will significantly improve your chances of staying afloat.
Global Ship Health Pool
Destroying destructible objects like various parts of a ship’s railing, cannon or masts is no longer the sole determining factor that decides when a ship is sunk. Before this update’s release, whenever players ended up hitting the ship’s hull or any non-destructible object with their shot, they didn’t deal any damage.
Ships are now assigned a global health pool that is unique for each and every naval vessel. Every shot that lands on an enemy ship will deal damage and contribute towards it meeting its end.
A new user interface designed to aid players better distinguish the remaining health of the ship they’re crewing will also serve the purpose of displaying various other ship statuses.
Round & Chain Shot
Select your shot of choice to make quick work of an enemy vessel! Prior to this update, there was no difference between the shots and players could pick either to sink a ship. As a matter of fact, chain shot was slightly more effective than round shot due to the larger hitbox.
Chain shot is now your shot of choice if you’re looking at de-masting an enemy vessel. This shot will prove its use quite dearly when going against larger naval vessels as you want to reduce their manoeuvrability. It won’t be a pretty sight if you receive a full broadside.
Be sure to make your shots count however as chain shot deals much less damage than a round shot if it hits anywhere but the mast. Additional damage to the overall ship’s health will also be dealt when you demast a ship.
Bigger Guns. More Damage!
As the title states, the bigger the gun, the greater the damage. Larger calibre guns like the relatively massive long gun present on the 2-Gun Schooner deals more than the 4-pounder aboard the 8-Gun Schooner.
Player Scoring. Captains & Crew
No longer will one of the most important classes be at the very bottom of the scoreboard! Players that decide to take up the demanding role of the Captain class will now gather score when an enemy vessel is sunk. This score is calculated based on the damage dealt by crewman manning the guns so Captains will also be rewarded for assisting the sinking of an enemy vessel.
Crews that manage to successfully land shots through the use of various artillery pieces on deck will similarly gather score based on the damage that they have dealt to an enemy vessel.
Designated Rowboat Spawns
Designated rowboat spawn positions will ensure that players will always find an available spawn point to join the round. You will find these spawns available on both the Naval Battlefield and Coastal Siege game modes.
As a preventive measure against the frequent launching of rowboats aboard bigger ships, we have now implemented a two minutes cooldown in between spawns. Don’t worry however, if your ship comes to an unfortunate end, the cooldown will be reduced to just 5 seconds so the entirety of the crew can still have its glorious last stand.
Borders placed around the map edge restrict naval engagements to a specific area. This will prevent players from endlessly sailing the seven seas making the fight at sea more engaging. Players that are close to going out of the battlefield area will receive a message informing them to make their way back.
Yellow, red, black, green, blue and a combination of paint schemes for each and every naval vessel present within the game! Take a brief look at all the allied vessels before the engagement starts as this may help you better distinguish ally from foe.
Here’s a look at the 8-Gun Schooner in a black and yellow paint scheme. Prior to this update, this naval vessel only spawned with a black and red scheme.
Ringable Ship Bells
Is it time for breakfast? Stuck in heavy fog with the rest of the fleet? Sound the ship’s bell!
Roleplay Scenarios. Weapon Racks & Overrides
Besides all the naval and coastal goodness, there’s plenty more to play around with in this update! Roleplay sits quietly in the corner of a game like this and seeing the popularity and daily occurrence of community-events, more functionality in support of this would indeed make for an excellent addition.
Providing solid groundwork for various roleplay scenarios to occur, hosts can now configure multiple server-side setting that will take Holdfast: Nations At War outside the confines of its usual gameplay experience. Configure limits for classes, define the allowed spawn-able classes per spawn point and the equipment they spawn with, spawn objects and various artillery pieces on a pre-defined location per map rotation, allow players to equip weapons from racks or even replenish ammunition and more.
To this effect, we’ve also setup up a wiki to centralise all the server-side configuration settings. The wiki is currently a work in progress. We’ll leave it to the good hands of the community to come up with new, interesting and creative ways to enjoy the game!
Beat To Quarters! Crews & Regiments
Prior to this update, servers hosting the Coastal Siege, Naval Battlefield and Naval Assault game modes idled at a 100% CPU usage due to several inefficiencies with how a third-party plugin functioned. Unfortunately, this resulted in renting servers running these game modes to be much costlier than their land-based counterparts.
Now that this is no longer the case, monthly costs for renting a coastal or naval server should be reduced by providers to almost match that of servers hosting army-based game modes. Coupled with the gameplay additions and changes mentioned above, it’ll certainly provide a solid base for crews to thrive and prosper.
What are you waiting for? Beat to quarters! Assemble the crew and prepare to partake in organised events on the naval front.
Community. Join The Discord!
Looking for a good bunch of fellows to play the game with? Do join our Discord! Linebattle events were players are encouraged to play in formations relevant to the Napoleonic era are hosted by the community through the week.
Discord is a great place to be to stay in touch with the game’s development. Feedback is always greatly welcomed. We look forward to seeing you there!
Ghangelog 32 - Game Version 0.30.7082.26288
Naval Gameplay Additions
- The 50-Gun Frigate! Complimented with a well-organised and trained crew the 50-Gun Frigate based on the ‘La Proserpine’ is quite the sight to behold!
- Rocketboats! Rocketboats will come in especially handy during the bombardment of coastal fortifications. Work your way through the enemies’ defences and create a breach before the landing parties do their deed.
- Rowable Rowboats! Up to four players can assist the crewman steering the rowboat with rowing the boat increasing the speed at which it travels.
- Coastal Siege! A community-favourite game mode is now playable once more. Fend off naval vessels and marine-filled rowboats with chain, round and grape shot in an attempt to capture your fortified position.
- New Map. Balamor Bay! A lighthouse on the beachhead overlooks the oncoming invasion as the garrison must make their stand in defence of the fortification until the timer runs out.
» Input the following parameter to play this map on your community server: map_name balamorbay
- Naval Battlefield. Redesigned! Pending on the type of vessel sunk, factions gather a score that will ultimately determine the victor. Sinking larger vessels contributes more score than smaller ones do.
» Ships and boats will also respawn shortly after they’re sunk enabling the crew that lost their vessel to join the round. Having to wait for the next round to join in the battle is now a thing of the past.
- Naval Assault. Redesigned! The Naval Assault game mode has been redesigned to factor in the ship’s sunk instead of the crewman killed as the condition that determines the victor. Ships don’t respawn in this game mode. By setting the commands below per map rotation, it is also possible to prevent players from respawning once they meet their end.
» allow_midround_spawning false
» round_spawn_close_timer_seconds 120
- Naval Warfront! Combined Naval & Coast. The Naval Battlefield and Coastal Siege game modes will feature a combined front on the Naval Warfront official servers. Different scenarios will continue to iterate and provide for a unique experience.
Roleplay Gameplay Additions
- Roleplay Scenarios. Providing solid groundwork for various roleplay scenarios to occur, hosts can now configure multiple server-side setting that will take Holdfast: Nations At War outside the confines of its usual gameplay experience. Take a look at our wiki for more information.
» Configure limits for classes.
» Define the allowed spawn-able classes per spawn point.
» Define the allowed spawn-able classes for every naval vessel.
» The weapons each and every class spawns with per faction.
» The ammunition each and every class spawns with per faction.
» Spawn objects and various artillery pieces by inputting coordinates per map rotation.
» Allow players to equip weapons from racks.
» Allow players to replenish firearm ammunition from ammoboxes.
» Configure the health points for every naval vessel.
» Define the selection of ships to spawn per map rotation. This can be unique for both factions.
- Causeways. Players can now play this map once more on their community server. Due to its sheer size, we thought it could prove useful for some roleplay scenarios.
» Input the following parameter to play this map on your community server: map_name causeways
- Protect The Stern. Be on the lookout for enemy vessels looking to gather a tactical advantage by manoeuvring behind your ship!
» Upwards to 30% damage of the overall ship’s health will be dealt if the stern is destroyed.
- Fight With The Weather Gauge. Raising your square-rigged sails is of much more importance now when sailing into the wind.
» Each and every naval vessel sails differently from one another. Learning your way through their strengths and weaknesses will significantly improve your chances of staying afloat.
- Global Ship Health Pool. Ships are now assigned a global health pool. Every shot irrespective if it hit a damageable object or not will deal damage.
- Round & Chain Shot. Chain shot is now your shot of choice if you’re looking at de-masting an enemy vessel. Be sure to make your shots count however as chain shot deals much less damage than round shot if it lands anywhere but the mast.
- Bigger Guns. More Damage! Larger calibre guns like the relatively massive long gun present on the 2-Gun Schooner deals more than the 4-pounder aboard the 8-Gun Schooner.
- Player Scoring. Captains. Players that decide to take up the demanding role of the Captain class will now gather score when an enemy vessel is sunk by their crewman.
» This score is calculated based on the damage dealt by crewman manning the guns so Captains will also be rewarded for assisting with sinking an enemy vessel.
- Player Scoring. Crewman. Crewman that manage to successfully land shots through the use of various artillery pieces on deck will similarly gather score based on the damage that they have dealt to an enemy vessel.
- Designated Rowboat Spawns. Designated rowboat spawn positions will ensure that players will always find an available spawn point to join the round.
- Launching Rowboats. As a preventive measure against the frequent launching of rowboats aboard bigger ships, we have now implemented a two minutes cooldown in between spawns.
» Cooldown will be reduced to just 5 seconds if the ship is sinking.
- Battlefield Areas. Borders placed around the map edge restrict naval engagements to a specific area. This will prevent players from endlessly sailing the seven seas making the fight at sea more engaging.
- Paint Schemes. Yellow, red, black, green blue and a combination of paint schemes for each and every naval vessel present within the game!
- Ringable Ship Bells. Is it time for breakfast? Stuck in heavy fog with the rest of the fleet? Sound the ship’s bell!
- Naval Announcer. You’ll now be notified when an allied or enemy vessel has been sunk. This announcement is also voice acted.
- Rocketeers are now able to carry ammo boxes.
- Players can now fire round shot from swivel guns on Gunboats.
- Performed multiple changes to better balance the Army Conquest game mode on plains maps.
- Increased the size of the wind indicator to make it more distinguishable.
- Players interacting with the Captain’s wheel or tiller will have a user interface displayed atop the minimap displaying the various sail groups they have raised or lowered.
» The numbers on the sail groups represent pressable hotkeys to raise or lower them. Once again, be sure to lower your square-rigged sails if you have no choice but to manoeuvre against the wind.
- Designed a new user interface to aid players to distinguish the remaining health of the ship they’re crewing amongst various other ship statuses.
- A user interface addition will now provide feedback to players when they successfully damage an enemy vessel or fortification with artillery pieces.
- Ships that have been sunk will have their re-spawn timer displayed in the spawn menu. You’ll also find scrollbars present next to the spawn and class selections.
- Included more varied ship names.
- The bar at the very top which aids players to identify the faction in the lead now correctly reflects the defender’s winning condition on the Coastal Siege game mode. In this mode, the defenders must survive until the timer runs out.
- Ships that get sunk are now displayed in the kill feed.
- Multiple interaction icons have been included to aid players to become familiar with various interaction points aboard a naval vessel. Launching rowboats, climbing the rigging and various others.
- Several additions to the ocean system present on the Naval Battlefield, Naval Assault and Coastal Siege game modes to improve its looks.
- Players steering the rowboat now have their hands placed on the tiller.
- Improved trails for cannonballs.
- World objects now reflect in the water.
- Adjusted the musket and cannon water hit particle effects.
- Improved the animations for pennants atop a ship’s mast.
- Changed the map loading screen for Open Waters. We plan to do the same with other maps in the future so they reflect the update graphics.
Quality of Life
- Cinematic Camera Mode. Players have the option to toggle cinematic view for the free-flight camera. Enabling this will smoothen your movement when turning in free-flight.
» Several setting to adjust the yaw and pitch speed, as well as sensitivity, can be found in the ‘Game’ options.
- You will now find artillery pieces to make use of on all the smaller variations of the plains maps.
- Players are now provided with the option to filter out ‘Private Servers’ from the server browser.
- Servers no longer idle at a 100% CPU usage when hosting the Naval Battlefield, Naval Assault or Coastal siege game mode. Servers idle at maximum usage irrespective of the player count.
» This occurred due to several inefficiencies with how a third-party plugin functioned.
- Switching to a lower quality ocean setting will completely replace the ocean shaders to a much simpler one gathering more performance.
- Administrators can now reload the server configuration file during runtime without restarting the server. Be warned that performing changes to the override commands incorrectly may cause the server to shut down. The same can occur if the syntax is used incorrectly. Changes will occur on map reload.
» rc fileReloader serverConfigFile true
- Administrators are now able to input rc commands in the server configuration file per map rotation. Once inputted, the command will be executed when that map rotation comes into play and will continue to persist through the rounds unless defined in a map rotation thereafter.
» Most of these commands are used for development proposes but can also prove useful for events or other roleplay scenarios.
- Administrators can now configure the time it takes for a ship to respawn by inputting the following command per map rotation.
» ships_respawn_time_seconds 120
- Administrators can now configure the required score that must be gathered by a specific faction in order to become the victor whilst playing the Naval Battlefield game mode. This should be done per map rotation.
» max_tickets 700
- Administrators can now adjust the wind strength. Wind strength impacts both the maximum knots at which a ship can travel and its manoeuvrability when sailing against the wind.
» wind_strength 1
- Administrators can adjust the cooldown timer for rowboats spawned aboard ships by inputting the following commands per map rotation.
» rowboat_cooldown_timer 120
» rowboat_cooldown_while_sinking_timer 5
- Be at the forefront of interplanetary travel! By inserting this command per map rotation, you can enable ships to fly. Press the ‘Space’ key to ascend and the ‘Shift’ key to descend.
» ships_spacemode true
- Solved an issue which caused buoyancy on ships not to function.
- Solved an issue which sometimes causes the weapon used to kill another player to be displayed incorrectly in the kill feed.
- Solved an issue which caused ships to take flight when they hit the rocks on Harouti Islands or the shoreline on Coastal Siege maps.
- Solved an issue which sometimes caused cannonballs to become invisible when fired.
- Attempted fix at an issue which sometimes caused a player to spawn in the middle of the ocean.
- Solved an issue were sails in a damaged state remain visible on the ship even though the mast was destroyed.
- Solved an issue which sometimes caused ships to spawn on top of one another and flip. Same goes for when spawning a rowboat aboard a ship.
- Solved a bug which caused ships in the spawn menu not to retain their correct order from largest to smallest.
- Solved an issue with masts not floating correctly on the water when destroyed.
- Attempted fix towards an issue which caused the initial looking direction to not retain its original position when switching from 1st to 3rd person camera. This caused players to end up looking at another direction when switching between modes.
- Solved an issue that caused interaction icons to still remain visible when a ship is sinking.
- Solved an issue which sometimes caused ships to be pushed back when hit by an artillery shot.
- Solved an issue were sails belonging to a destroyed mast still followed the lead of the ship when being raised or lowered.
- Solved an issue which made interacting with ladder and rope positions aboard a ship to be quite tedious.
- Solved an issue with ladder positions on the rowboat being inverted causing players to frequently fall off the boat.
- Solved an issue that enabled players to interact with the guns aboard a ship’s deck when swimming.
- Solved an issue with the reflection probe not updating correctly causing the ocean to appear extremely bright.
- Solved an issue with normals on the Marine.
- Solved an issue which caused other players to appear jitter when moving in free-flight.
- Solved an issue with an ammo box giving the wrong ammunition on Fort Imperial.
- Solved an issue with server showing up as an empty black bar in the server browser if they are unable to correctly establish a connection with the lobby.
Even though there’s plenty to check out in this update’s release, do look forward to what’s to come! We’ll be heading back to developing game-play oriented features on drier pastures for the next major update. Well placed player-built defences will turn the tide of battle in your favour.
A big thanks to all of those good fellows who joined us in our testing! We do hope to see you once more on the seven seas.
Thank you for your generous support and until next time, may good health be yours. We’re working on the next update.
Discuss this blog post here.
Once again thank you for all of your support from all of us on the Holdfast: NaW team,
- Refleax, Rycon, Dreas, Wrexial, PingPong, Walki, Cameron & Rejenorst
Anvil Game Studios