Author Topic: Release: 21.2.0-RC1  (Read 271 times)

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Offline SirKnightly

  • George or Keira?
  • 211
We are trying for quarterly releases from now on. Here is the first!

Change log: (chronologically ordered)
  • Added a dynamic action system for more modder control of effects
  • Removed fireball limit
  • Fixed bomb intercept in multiplayer
  • Changed nebula fog distance from a linear to exponential model
  • Turrets on moving subobjects enabled
  • LZ4 Compression added for game files

  • None

Deprecations are a mechanism in FSO where a certain feature or aspect of the engine has changed or is no longer supported. Since this would normally break existing mods we have the mod table feature "$Target Version:" with which a mod can specify what version of FSO it was developed with. The features listed above will be removed or changed when the target version of a mod is at least the version released in this post.

Previous 21.0 Release Thread

Launchers, if you don't have one already:
All platforms: For every day use, we recommend Knossos, an integrated solution for downloading and launching mods.

Hidden Text: Alternative Launchers • Show
Cross-platform: wxLauncher 0.12.x Test Build (ongoing project for a unified launcher, you should upgrade to the latest RC/test build if you have not yet)
Important: For best compatibility with FSO 3.8 and later you should use at least wxLauncher 0.12.

Windows:  Launcher 5.5g (Mirror) (Mirror) Not compatible with Windows 8+, use wxLauncher above
OS X:  Soulstorm's OS X Launcher 3.0
Linux:  YAL or by hand or whatever you can figure out.

Windows (32/64-bit)
Compiled using GitHub Actions on Windows Server 2019 (10.0.17763), Visual Studio Enterprise 2019


This one is based on the SSE2 Optimizations from the MSVC Compiler.

Hidden Text: Alternative builds • Show

64-bit AVX:
This one is based on the AVX Optimizations from the MSVC Compiler (fastest build if your CPU supports AVX instructions).

32-bit AVX:
This one is based on the AVX Optimizations from the MSVC Compiler.

What are those SSE, SSE2 and AVX builds I keep seeing everywhere?
Your answer is in this topic.
Don't want to deal with that? Use Knossos and it will download the best build specifically for your PC!

Linux 64-bit
Compiled with Ubuntu 16.04 LTS 64-bit, GCC 5

These builds use a mechanism called AppImage which should allow these builds to run on most Linux distributions. However, we recommend that you compile your own builds which will result in less issues.
Alternatively, if there is a package in your software repository then you should use that. If you are the maintainer of such a package for a distribution then let us know and we will include that here.

Not available We recently lost access to our Mac CI environment which we usually used for compiling these builds so for the time being, there will be no builds for this OS.

Hidden Text: TrackIR Users • Show
An external DLL is required for FSO to use TrackIR functions.  The following DLL is simply unpacked in to your main FreeSpace2 root dir.
TrackIR is only supported on Windows.
TrackIR SCP DLL (Mirror) (Mirror)

Known issues:
« Last Edit: March 30, 2021, 10:31:25 am by ngld »


Offline jg18

  • A very happy zod
  • 210
  • can do more than spellcheck
Might I suggest that we make the above change log more accessible to players, meaning (among other things) jargon-free?

As in, what's cool about these code changes, from a player POV? Why should players be interested in trying out this build?

Even though I have a minor in math, I don't understand the implications of the change in the nebula fog distance model. :confused:

We could still keep the technical details, hidden behind a "click to expand"-type button at the bottom of the OP.

Screenshots, especially "before/after" pairs, might be handy to show off changes that have visible impact, which isn't necessarily limited to graphics.

While I'm at it, text to strike:
  • "Here is the first!" (implied by "from now on"
  • "(chronologically ordered)" (maybe mention in "technical details')
  • maybe the whole section about deprecations, since there are none (not worth the post real estate/reader's time)
  • the full filenames (they'll figure out from their Downloads folder which file is the RC, but include the file extension if you want)
  • the "(32/64-bit)" from Windows section header (it's apparent right below it)
  • under "Windows", "Compiled using" (move to hidden "technical details" section)
  • The line about SSE2 (maybe say that if your computer is newer than 20XX for some appropriate value of "XX", try the Alternative Build)

And simplify the section about Launchers; just mention Knossos. An fso:// link that causes Knossos to load the RC build by default automatically for all mods would be ultra-handy, no direct DL required

Also, looks like the links to the OS icons in section headers are broken. Although since "OS X" isn't available, a frowning face version would be appropriate. ;)

Speaking of which, change "OS X" to macOS.

I'm sure I could think of more, but that's enough to start.

My $0.02. :)


Offline m!m

  • 211
In case anyone wants to implement those changes, the template this post is generated from is stored here:


Offline jg18

  • A very happy zod
  • 210
  • can do more than spellcheck
In case anyone wants to implement those changes, the template this post is generated from is stored here:
Oh, I didn't know the template was on GitHub. Thanks. I'll work on getting a PR up, in between work on containers.

I don't have the expertise needed to make the change log more accessible, though. It's great that we have a detailed change log, of course; I'm just guessing many people (including me) don't know what the changes mean.

FWIW, the text issues I brought up are largely stuff that's been around for years.