Testlive Patch (04.04.2020) - Followers II: Stances, Command system and more!

Greetings Exiles!

Coming hot on the trails of our previous content patch, conveniently titled Followers I, and as announced in our producer letter, we feel now ready to deploy on Testlive the first iteration of our next game update: Followers II!

Given the amazing reception you all gave to our new commitment to make Testlive a meaningful platform to test and improve upon new features, we feel this is the right time to let you all have a first look at our new batch of changes and improvements aimed at overhauling how you interact with your followers.

Among these changes comes a very long and oft-requested feature, AI stances! We have also added a command system for your active follower, so you can give direct orders such as move and attack. There’s more changes and improvements that come with these new additions that will generally improve how AI reacts and interacts in the game. We have also included a couple of commonly requested quality of life changes that will make your adventures in the Exiled lands even more amazing: you can now have a companion and a horse active at the same time, and while riding you can also drag any unconscious NPCs!

We’d love if you would give all these changes a try and let us improve on these features by sending us any feedback you might have regarding possible issues. Remember, this Testlive update is still a work in progress build and many things might still be still under active development!

Thanks again for your ongoing feedback and support.


Please remember that updates can mess with your installed mods. We suggest taking a backup of your current database before updating to any new patch if you have mods installed.


highlights

New follower behaviors!

You can now give your followers a brand new set of engagement rules and tactical preferences to better suit your playstyle!
Behavior
Accessed via a new option in the interaction wheel, you can now assign different behaviors to your thralls and pets. Divided into two sections (Engagement and Tactics), this will give you better control than ever on how your armies react to incoming threats.
Please note that these new options are for your thralls and pets who are set as base defenses and not actively set as your follower (to see which new changes apply to active followers, you can skip a few sections and go straight to the new Follower Command System!)


Engagement behaviors


Under this new menu, you can now choose and customize different rules of engagement for each of your followers. These new options are:

Eng-GuardArea Guard Area
With this option, your follower will only attack when a hostile engages with them or any friendly presence (including you!) within their detection radius.

Eng-GuardMe Guard me
You only want them to attack with those that directly attack you or those hostiles that you engage in combat with? This is your option!

Eng-AttackAllEnemies Attack all enemies
When subtlety isn’t part of your master plan, just let your armies know about this option. They will engage with any hostile that enters their detection radius, old-school!

Eng-AttackNothing Attack nothing
If you want them to know engaging with any threats might be above their gruel pay-grade, choose this option. Any follower with this behavior will not retaliate against hostile activity.

Eng-AttackDistance Eng-ChaseDistance Attack and Chase Distance
You can set at which distance your thrall or pet will detect hostiles (Attack Distance), as well as the distance they might move (together with some new aggro systems) from their designed guard spot while pursuing their target (Chase Distance). These two settings open a new submenu with a range of options, from Lowest (5 meters) to Longest (50 meters).


Tactics behaviors


Within this section, you can set which tactical choices will be preferred by your followers:

Tac-Defend Stand and defend
With this option, your followers will stay firm and keep the designated position against any hostile activity.

Tac-Melee Prioritize melee
Followers with this tactic assigned will try to deal with enemies up-close and prioritize equipping the shortest range weapon they have available in their inventory.

Tac-Ranged Prioritize ranged
This tactic will make your thrall opt for long-ranged engagements, prioritizing ranged weapons in their inventory when attacking an enemy.


New Follower Command System!


By Crom! You can now give direct orders to your active companion. Politely ask them to move, or rudely ask them to annihilate any hostile targets within the press of a button!
Aim and press the assigned key (X by default) to move your companion to the designated location or attack an enemy. Double press that key to make them stop any activity they’re engaged on (and double press again to make them resume that activity). Press it three times and you will ask your companion to return to your position.
You can also hold the command button to open a new radial menu where you can select any of these settings individually!


Some important Quality of Life additions!


We’ve been listening to the feedback you’ve all been sending us since the release of the mounts update and we’ve integrated the two most requested changes! You can now have an active companion as well as your trusty steed, as horses don’t take the active follower slot anymore! And while you’re out and about on your ride, don’t forget that you can now drag any NPCs you’ve left unconscious!


tldr

  • New follower stances!
  • New follower command system!
  • You can now have a companion and a mount active at the same time!
  • You can now drag unconscious NPCs while riding a horse! Yee-haw!
  • AI improvements!
  • …and more!

Currently Known Issues

  • The Follower Command System is currently missing Audio Effects.
  • Target lock keybind while using a controller is currently overridden by the Command key.
  • Given the complexity of the AI changes present in this patch, it is possible that some of the new systems and behaviors might not only not work as intended, but present worse performance than those already available in live. We’re extremely interested in any feedback you can share about AI issues and behavior in this build of the game.
  • This is a Work in Progress build and as such some features might not work as intended. Please share your feedback should you encounter any issues, so we can fix them in a future iteration of this patch.

notes
performance

  • Deployed a number of optimizations regarding server logs.
  • Fixed a number of crashing issues.

exploits

  • Fixed an issue that would allow building inside certain locations.

newadditions

  • Added new follower behavior settings!
    • For the first time, you can customize the rules of engagement of your follower defenses as well as their tactics when in combat.
  • Added new command system that will allow you to give direct orders to your active follower.
    • This can be controlled via a new radial menu (holding X by default), or giving direct input (by single pressing X to move/attack, double press to cancel).
  • Added new animations to provide visual feedback to the command system.
  • Added and reworked AI behaviors to deepen and improve the playing experience.

combat

  • Fixed an issue where Riptide light attacks would deal double damage.

ai

  • Fixed several instances where friendly and/or hostile AI would become non-responsive towards external threats.
  • Reworked several AI components, such as hate list (list of hostile targets) and leash distance (distance they’re allowed to chase their target).
  • Resolved several issues where followers would have troubles teleporting to the player.
  • Resolved a number of issues that would prevent thralls from using weapon combos.
  • Improved AI awareness. They can now detect threats and targets visually and via sounds.

balancing

  • Stamina cost for dodging has been reduced for medium and light armors.
  • Redesigned the Accuracy 40 perk. It is now called Flattening Shot and will allow your heavy shots to push back or knock down targets.

qol

  • Improved navigation on interaction radial wheels. You can now use key or button inputs to ease your navigation.
  • You can now drag unconscious NPCs while riding a horse.
  • Mounts no longer take a follower slot. This means you can now have a follower and a horse at the same time.

animation

  • Added character animations when issuing commands to followers.

ui

  • Added new radial menu options to control follower behavior.
  • Added new follower command menu.
  • New key bindings have been added to control the new commands.

community

Separate TestLive Product on Steam

We heard your input regarding the inconvenience with having to switch back and forth between the main game and our TestLive servers. To make it easier for you and because we really value your testing and feedback, we added a separate product for the TestLive server on Steam.

If you own Conan Exiles on Steam, you should now see a separate Product called “Conan Exiles - Testlive Client” in your library which gives you the option to install an additional instance of the game specifically for the TestLive servers. Please be aware that this will prompt you for a full additional installation.

We are aware that not everyone wants install or has space for two full installations. For those of you who don’t want to play through the additional TestLive Client, you can still access the TestLive servers through our old method.

31 Likes

Acc 40 change should replace Acc 20 perk instead, with Acc 40 left as-is. The bounce is obnoxious, and arrows will bounce off targets instead of hit. If it can bounce of the target, it has obviously hit the target. Might be too powerful for a 2nd level perk, but the perks can be shuffled. Please just get rid of the bounce and let us keep our pen.

3 Likes

I believe that these changes are incredible and will bring significant changes to the gameplay of the game, but please noble developers, also bring (if it is not impossible) something that brings more life to the followers. it would be my dream in this game that I love so much.

3 Likes

FML!!! You guys! Oh my my my my my my MY!!!

I have not loaded up and tried yet but I can hardly believe my eyes! This sounds amazing! And the horses not occupying a follower slot anymore! Fck YEAH! We’re almost where I wish it to be :star_struck:

I will be sure to give my feedback and suggestions but first of all I would love to say thank you,
thank you for listening!!!
I will stop here and go test first but thank you so very very much! I cannot WAIT to see what other popular suggestions make it into the official game.

MAN! THIS IS AWESOME!!!

:metal: :smiling_imp:

7 Likes

I agree, this patch is surreal :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

4 Likes

I don’t know if I’m right, but this ability will finally make me leave lethal and non-lethal weapons with Thrall and he will choose the non-lethal one (the club that only makes him pass out) and the thrall won’t kill everything ahead?
If this is going to be very useful, I will no longer need to carry the thrall weapons in fear that he will kill level 4 thralls that I find.

Can you guys think more about the PVP you guys will kill pvp with adding horses and thralls at the same time , think about the lagg , it’s already laggy with just having a horse or a thrall . Do proper testing with actual PVP players cause all I can see is me throwing someone on floor for my thrall to follow up and kill him sounds super op already since 6 guys on a horse is already hard enough. Imagine with them having thralls too that’s just a game killer right there. All the servers including my private populated or not has been crashing , crazy lagg with pvp and also lots of undermeshing everywhere you can do it same undermesh spots with new stuff like chairs, barrels you guys need to focus more on that .
@Hugo
@Ignasis

7 Likes

Maybe you should get more of the PVP community to give you ideas all I see is PVE players getting what they want

4 Likes

Downloading now.

Let the breaking commence!

@Ignasis
@Hugo
Think about the solos, think about they new players playing. This game is not noob friendly what so ever. Alphas don’t care if you don’t know or not. Maybe making noob friendly servers could be useful , also this time with quarantine making them game easier to get would bring the population higher

Beautiful! That’s all I really need to say. :heart:

This sounds like a great move in the right direction. Horses may finally begin to see some use now that we don’t have to sacrifice taking a thrall with us. Hopefully this also means that horse AI is being tweaked so that they avoid combat when the player dismounts. Be a bummer if they still get under foot and place themselves in harm’s way.

3 Likes

Bravo Zulu. Can’t wait to see what else you are working on. This is really a great game getting even greater.

1 Like

Awesome enhancements !

I found that the update was missing when starting Testlive from the .exe and after some investigation realized that Steam had an ‘Update Pending’. I am assuming this is connected to minimizing internet traffic since updates usually happen automatically to the game in the background (it’s set that way intentionally).

To anyone that encounters this, please check Steam.

I’m outa here to enjoy Testlive !

Regards

jim

So uhhhh, I hopped into testlive for a bit to try out the new arrow perk, and all the green shalebacks were attacking me when up to now they’ve been the docile ones.

Is this supposed to happen?

Okay so 1st thing:

Could we get a way to view a given follower’s current behavior settings at a glance (preferably on their info screen)?

2nd thing: My horse doesn’t attack anymore. Fine, I’m okay with that. However, he still has tactics/behavior settings. If these don’t do anything, could we just nix the radial option on horses?

Still playing around with how far I can send a follower and aggression radius (basically I’m sending him to start fights), but other than him not finishing his combat combos a couple times, nothing game breaking yet.

Side note: I may re-bind sheathe because every time I put my weapons away my follower sprinted ahead.

Verified that my horse is now passive no matter what setting I place him under, or if I have Millard Fillmore (my test follower) with me at that the time.

I even set the horse to aggressive at max range, then stood behind him as an archer shot arrows into him. He still did nothing.

1 Like

Again, awesome enhancements !

Abnormal behavior of thrall (Cimmerian Berserker lvl 10):
Stance: both guard and follow
Engagement: attack all
Attack distance and follow-target distance: max

Thrall runs back and forth continuously and in some cases does not attack anything. It took >15 seconds for him to attack a bird that was attacking me (standing still in God mode and after removing God mode). It’s possible a nearby deer (non-aggressive, but I told him to attack everything) confused the AI. He’s damn hard to target that way :aaaaaa:

Thanks for the update !

Regards

jim

Edited PS: After everything was dead or had run away from the general area, the thrall returned to his guard spot and stood still.

Wooo!! this is awesome!

1 Like

Oh my god, I’m so happy about it!