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  • Nick Thomadis

Major Update v1.1

Updated: Jan 24

Hello fellow admirals,


On December 10 2021 we entered the Steam Early Access. Up to now the development period was both exciting and engaging for us developers and all the players who follow our project. At first the campaign was very limited, featuring only two playable nations and a small map.


During 2022 we did not only focus on enriching the campaign but developed dozens of features that you, the players, requested, making Ultimate Admiral: Dreadnought a very unique game, currently the only one with a so in-depth 3D ship design system, offering a diverse experience, each time you play a campaign or a custom battle.


We had announced on Steam our plans to fully release within about 12 months, and despite all the difficulties we faced as a development studio with several of our members being affected by the war in Ukraine, we managed to accomplish our goal to finalize the main features of Ultimate Admiral: Dreadnoughts within the scheduled time frame.


We are finally very glad to announce the next and biggest update so far for Ultimate Admiral: Dreadnoughts. The v1.1 update aims to be the base for the full release of the game as we finalized the main content of the campaign, and developed all those we have promised and many more according to the valuable feedback of the players.


The formation system has been revamped and large fleets are much more easily manageable

Now the campaign is fully fleshed with all the necessary components to allow a simulation of historical playout and challenges on different and many gameplay levels. During the beta procedure we managed to fix several bugs, new and very old, so that v1.1 can be truly an upgrade compared to the previous public version. Please read in more detail what the new major update includes:


MAJOR NEW FEATURES

  • Shared Designs: This is a feature we wanted to make from the start, but because it would break many times during the development process, we decided to postpone it until now. You can now design ships in the special “Shared Designs” interface which you can find in the main menu. Those designs are then available for the AI auto-design in campaigns or as shareable ships in Custom Battles.

"Shared Designs are accessed from the main menu

With this new system you can create very effective ship designs that the AI opponents may use randomly or always and this can greatly speed up the campaign fleet generation. The default option is “Selective” which makes the AI use those designs when it fails to produce a valid ship within a few tries. “Always” makes the AI choose those designs in priority. You can also select to not use at all those designs.

The "Shared Designs" interface allows to design ships for all nations and technology years, that can be shared in the Campaign and in Custom Battles for AI generated fleets but also to work as templates for Custom Battles

This new feature also allows you to share the designs you make with your friends as each ship is stored in a separate file which you can copy/paste in the “Shared Designs” folder.

The ship files can be found in the game's save folder and can be shared with friends

  • Improved Fire Control: Now the ships can effectively target multiple targets from both sides of the ship with the same weapon group. Previously each weapon group, for example secondary guns of 3-inch caliber, could only lock into one target and so if another target was approaching from the other side, the 3-inch guns would switch to this target and stop firing at the previous one, creating a very abusive situation against battleships which could not utilize fully their multiple secondary guns against destroyers that surrounded them. With this new feature, which was one of the oldest and most requested from the players, the fire control should be much more effective and realistic.


The new fire control allows gun groups to target different targets from both sides of the ship

  • Task Force limit: The Task Forces can now have a specific number of ships depending on the commanding level that is researched in campaign. The commanding level increases the maximum crew that can be commanded in a Task Force and is researchable in “Naval Communications”. Basically this new feature does what it was requested for several months, it brings a realistic balance on the amount of ships that can consist of a fleet, preventing the AI and player to mass all ships into a single task force. Additionally it does not allow to create a group of dozens of large battleships and win every AI fleet that comes near. The new limit simulates a realistic aspect of naval warfare that makes a naval task force able to cover a specific area with a limit of ships and the nearby area with another group.

MAJOR CAMPAIGN FEATURES

  • New Provinces and different initial settings: The map has been enriched with several new provinces. Additionally, the initial controllers of those provinces are different according to the year you start the campaign, based on historical facts. Austria-Hungary remains as a major nation after 1920 supposing that it was not dissolved fully but it functioned as a buffer state against Italy which was very dissatisfied from her World War I gains. Unrest levels and economy are also varying according to the starting year of the campaign as well as the government.

Many new provinces, sea regions and map mechanics are added

  • Government mechanics: Now each nation has a different government depending on historical facts. The base governments are “Absolute Monarchy”, “Constitutional Monarchy” and “Democracy”. Constitutional Monarchy and Democracy have a parliament, elections and five different parties: Nationalists, Right Wing, Center, Left Wing, Communists. According to the government that rules the nation, different modifiers apply affecting the GDP growth, province income, naval funds, land army power and unrest. The flags of the Major Nations change depending on their governments, for example, when Nationalists win the elections in Germany, the Nazi flag is used. Constitutional Monarchy is a special type of government which filters out the effects of the different parties that win the election every 4 years. Both types of Monarchy are abolished when there is a revolution and democracy becomes established.

The Politics panel became enriched with diplomacy options and various statistical details

  • New diplomacy options: The player can now interact with the other major nations more by using five different options: Improve Relations, Increase Tension, Cancel Alliance, Peace Treaty, Naval Invasion. Each option becomes available according to the situation. “Improve Relations” and “Increase Tension” appear for a nation that is not at war with you. “Cancel Alliance” may appear when the nation is allied for more than a year and the alliance is not involved in a war. “Peace Treaty” appears when during war a peace treaty event triggers but negotiations fail. The “Naval Invasion” appears when you place a fleet of more than 100,000 tons in a sea region of an enemy major nation.. All those options except “Naval Invasion” have a chance to succeed as you do not take the decision but try to influence the government for the respective action and the AI can also use them against you or other nations.

  • Land Conquering: When a war starts then if the enemies border each other, there is a chance that the strongest nation in the military (According to the size of army, naval force and economy) chooses to initiate a major offensive. You see on the map the attack direction towards the neighboring province and each turn battles occur which may increase the advance for the attacker by a proportion. If the attacker advances 100% towards the defender’s province, the province is immediately conquered. If the advance stalls below 25% for many turns, the defender repels the attacker and the offensive stops. If a peace treaty is signed the value of the province is reduced according to the advance of the attacker and so it can be gained as a war reparation more easily.

  • Naval Invasions against major nations: As mentioned above, players can fully control when they want to make a naval invasion against a major enemy. All they have to do is mass a large number of Naval Task Forces in the sea region and choose the action “Naval Invasion” in the Politics. In the next turn a “Naval Invasion” mission instance is created where you must place ships inside in order to support the naval invasion. The naval invasion triggers land battles each turn if you have some ships to transfer troops. Eventually, after some turns, the invasion may end in a failure or succeed and the province becomes yours. Naval Invasion can be ordered similarly by AI opponents.

  • Land Battles and Logistics: Land battles generate losses for any involved side which are reducing the home population. Allied nations (Major or small) will participate in the battles depending on their distance from the battle and their naval power. As battles happen in the defender’s province, the economy of this province becomes damaged accordingly. The Logistics factor greatly affects the efficiency of the armies and is dependent on the transport capacity and naval power of the nation. When a nation loses its naval power, then its land armies become significantly weaker.

  • Conquering of smaller nations: During peacetime, special events can trigger missions against other smaller nations where your land armies attack automatically or you have to send a fleet to begin a naval invasion with the mechanics described above.

Land battles are now happening in various scenarios and army logistics are depended on fleet power

  • Rebellions: When unrest rises a lot for a major nation then provinces may revolt especially the distant colonies. Your fleet may support the defense in special missions where you must send a fleet in the highlighted radius. Similar rebellions happen for the non-playable nations, for example the Ottoman Empire may lose a lot of her provinces due to rebellions.

  • Alliance & Ship trade with smaller nations: The smaller nations may sign a special alliance agreement with Major nations which positively affects the economy of the major nation, and allows the trade of warships. The major nation can sell warships to the smaller nations upon their requests. When you accept a sales order then the requested ships are automatically added to the building queue with a payment in advance and the rest of the profit is received when they are completed. The sold ships can be ceased if needed during their construction but this can negatively affect the relations with the small nation which may result in the alliance ending. The sold ships are added to the fleet of the small nation and during war they can aid their allies in their vicinity. For example, you or the AI can sell ships to Greece and Greece’s ships will participate in naval battles for her allies.

  • Shipbuilding capacity: The port capacity of the home provinces affects the size of domestic shipyards and their capability to support the construction of warships. The larger the home port capacity the larger is the shipbuilding capacity of a nation. When the shipbuilding capacity becomes exceeded due to simultaneous building of many ships, then the construction rate decreases resulting in severe production delays and increased construction costs. In that case, it is advised to at least suspend the construction of some ships to speed up the building of the rest of the warships. In a few words, you will no longer be able to build infinite ships of a certain limited tonnage but the production capability will be dependent on the port capacity of your home provinces in a given maximum tonnage. If the port capacity becomes damaged during a war, then you will notice a major deterioration in the shipbuilding capability for your nation for the following years.

When the total shipbuilding capacity is exceeded the ships under construction/repair/refit have delays

  • Oil resources: The game now simulates the importance of oil resources as they gradually become discovered in the 20th century based on historical facts and random situations. Oil resources boost the economy of the nation that has them in various ways and also affects the fuel dependency of the fleets. If a nation has not a direct access to oil resources then ships with oil fuel are significantly more expensive to maintain and the fuel takes longer to replenish. On the contrary, nations with oil resources that are at a high level depending on the population needs, will notice a significant boost in fuel replenishment rate and the ability of their fleets to operate in distant waters becomes increased. Oil discovery events notify where oil is found and on the map there is a special icon which highlights the oil production provinces. Barren provinces of the middle east will become very rich and important when oil becomes discovered in their soil.

The straits/canal mechanics do not allow passage to enemies during war

  • Canals/Channels finalization: In the previous update we introduced the Kiel canal and its limited functionality. Now all the major canals and strategic straits are available and will allow passage only to allies. For example, the Dardanelles and Bosporus straits belonging to the Ottoman Empire will not allow trespassing of enemies of a major nation that is allied with. Other major nations may order a naval invasion simulating the Gallipoli campaign in order to seize those straits.

16x NEW HULLS*

The famous American Ship “USS Maine” whose destruction was one of the major reasons that caused the Spanish-American war of 1898 is now offered as a detailed model in the game. It is available for the USA as a “Coastal Defense Ship” from 1890 till 1898 with a displacement between 6,100 and 8,500 tons. In addition, the following new variant hulls of early technology are now available:

  • “Turret Ship” for China from 1890 till 1905 with a displacement between 5,500 and 7,500 tons, a ship which resembles the ironclad battleships of the Beiyang Fleet.

  • “Experimental Turret Ship” for China from 1890 till 1905 with a displacement between 5,750 and 8,200 tons, a ship which supports many turret guns but is very vulnerable and slow.

  • “Coastal Defense Ship” for China from 1890 till 1894 with a displacement between 3,200 and 4,200 tons.

  • “Coastal Defense Ship” for Germany and Austria from 1890 till 1894 with a displacement between 3,500 and 4,500 tons.

  • “Armored Cruiser II” for Austria from 1890 till 1907 with a displacement between 3,500 and 10,500 tons.

  • “Armored Cruiser III” for Austria from 1890 till 1897 with a displacement between 5,000 and 7,500 tons.

  • “Turret Cruiser” for Russia and Spain from 1890 till 1907 with a displacement between 5,000 and 7,500 tons.

  • “Armored Cruiser II” for Spain from 1890 till 1907 with a displacement between 7,500 and 11,000 tons.

  • “Medium Cruiser” for China from 1896 till 1921 with a displacement between 7,500 and 9,500 tons.

  • “Small Torpedo Cruiser” for France and Russia from 1890 till 1893 with a displacement between 850 and 1,500 tons.

  • “Torpedo Cruiser” for Germany, France and Russia from 1890 till 1893 with a displacement between 1,000 and 2,000 tons.

  • “Torpedo Cruiser” for the USA, Britain, Japan, Spain, China and Italy from 1890 till 1893 with a displacement between 1,000 and 2,000 tons.

  • “Gunboat” for the USA, Russia and Spain from 1890 till 1893 with a displacement between 1,000 and 2,000 tons.

  • “Small Semi-Dreadnought” for China and Spain from 1905 till 1916 with a displacement between 9,500 and 11,500 tons.

  • “Small Semi-Dreadnought” for Italy from 1899 till 1908 with a displacement between 12,500 and 15,500 tons.

A variant of the new detailed hull model based on USS Maine





NEW GUNS The following different looking guns are added:

  • New Mark-1 guns for calibers 2-inch up to 13-inch for the USA.

  • New Mark-2 and Mark-3 guns for calibers 2-inch up to 9-inch for the USA.

  • New Mark-1 guns for calibers 2-inch up to 13-inch for China.

  • New Mark-2 guns for calibers 2-inch up to 9-inch for China.

NEW NAVAL ACADEMY MISSION

  • “A different fate”: Design a ship similar to USS Maine and defend against a force of more modern Spanish warships.

FIXES, BALANCES & MINOR ADDITIONS

  • Fixed several issues which could cause turn lags or crashes in the campaign.

  • Fixed problems that could cause too much depletion of ammo / fuel in battles involving submarines.

  • Fixed supply of ships being too scarce in large voyages away from ports.

  • Fixed minefield damage being too much on some occasions.

  • Reworked tension mechanics to work more subtly.

  • Fixed many longstanding issues of the ship formations.

  • Fixed some ship targeting issues (mainly with the new Fire Control improvements).

  • Overall improvement on Battle AI and Campaign AI.

  • Fixed ship stalling caused by problems of evasion and formation logic.

  • Minor fixes on some hulls.

  • Added more new parts: funnels/towers for several early tech ships.

  • Various other minor fixes, improvements and optimizations. The fixes are in a very long list. Anyone interested can check the beta list of fixes here: https://steamcommunity.com/app/1069660/discussions/3/3732952742338691344/

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By reading the above you may have noticed the sheer amount of new content, therefore, it is expected the game to have a few unresolved minor issues or unrefined details, arguably fewer than other games in full release status but we must address them before fully releasing Ultimate Admiral: Dreadnoughts. This is why we cannot yet announce the release date, as we will need some days to polish the game.


After the full release, Ultimate Admiral: Dreadnoughts will continue to be supported for at least 6 months, as we will keep adding even more features, ships, and any necessary fixes. We hope you will enjoy the new update and continue to share with us your valuable feedback and criticism, which so far has helped us enormously in developing this game.


Thank you all for your continuous support! Please keep sharing your feedback in our forums: Official Forum

Steam Forum


The Game-Labs Team


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Hotfix Update v1.1.1 24/1/2023

https://store.steampowered.com/news/app/1069660/view/3653016388848313472

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