Natural Selections 2′s Exosuit Is “A Can Of Boom”

By Jim Rossignol on August 28th, 2012 at 5:00 pm.

Get away from her you BITCH / 20 seconds to comply etc
We all like robot battlesuits. Yes, even you, Steve. So it is with whirr-stomp gladness that we are able to reveal Natural Selection 2‘s exosuit. Yes, it’s a robot suit, with a man inside, with guns for arms. And it is clearing away aliens like a leaf-blower at work in the park. Unknown Worlds explain the wider context of this auto-death machine: “Along with this mechanized pain train, the impending Exosuit patch includes a brand new map: Veil. The patch is also packed with bug fixes, balance adjustments, and performance improvements. The physics system has been completely overhauled. A new hint system gives greater accessibility for new players, while a menu option allows experienced players a clear HUD. New commander UI’s are making it easier for those of you who aspire to lead, and a new power grid system will allow you to place structures more deftly.”

Instant beta access is available with a pre-order.

So there’s that.

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33 Comments »

  1. Alexander Norris says:

    As an aside, this now makes the game feature-complete, I believe. Steam preorders are up soon, and the game should be released before October.

    Yay! We’ll finally have European players so I can play more than one match a week. Maybe they won’t all be terrible, either.

    • Hallgrim says:

      PSA: Beta-access with pre-orders ends on September 4.

      “On September 4, pre-orders will become available on the Steam Store. At this time, instant beta access for pre-order will end. Natural Selection 2 will release in the very near future, soon after Steam pre-orders become available.”

  2. Keymonk says:

    But can you speak to the monsters?

  3. lagga says:

    oh god yes a veil remake, for those who didn’t play NS1 it was the equivalent of de_dust2, had so many amazing clan matches on the original, probably more excited about the map than the exosuit :D

    • DarkFarmer says:

      dust…. 2? surely de_dust is the “dust” of counterstrike.

      • quaunaut says:

        The way he phrased it was intentional. de_dust2 is to de_dust as ns_veil is to ns_eclipse.

        • lagga says:

          This basically, ns_veil was added in version 2.0 using the same tile set as ns_eclipse (being by the same mapper), and then also like dust2 it became by far the most popular map for clan matches.

          • mivvian194 says:

            If you’ve taken some time away from trying it out, you should give it another shot. Performance/stability have been the primary focus and continue to be, so things are getting better rapidly. The difference between a few months of development on this game is really astounding.
            http://www.indiedb.com/games/vroom

          • jondare says:

            Holy crap they’re getting smart… Now it’s not just some random comment and a link, now the link is disguised as a link to a game :S

            Who would have thought Skynet started as a spambot?

      • Sic says:

        de_dust2 was vastly superior, and in actual matches de_dust was almost never played, whereas de_dust2 was one of the most played.

  4. Miker says:

    For anybody who’s played the beta, can you give an overview of technical performance? Like avg fps at high settings at 1080p, and give your specs?

    • Vandelay says:

      Can’t give specifics, but I can say the performance has improved dramatically since the early days of the beta. My i5 Sandy Bridge (unclocked), 2GB ATi 6950, 8GB RAM plays it very nicely at maxed out settings running at a res of 1680×1050.

      They have also sorted out the network issues, as far as I can see. Where you were lucky to get through half a match of 4v4 you can pretty much guarantee to complete a full 8v8 game.

      If anyone was holding off pre-ordering due to reports of instability, you really shouldn’t worry now.

    • Musey says:

      Performance to date has been pretty universally terrible on all but the most cutting edge machines due to lua scripting implementation things that I don’t really understand (something like making it easier to implement balance changes at a lua level while being less efficient performance wise).

      However! This patch marks the first round of “massive performance increases” in the run up to release – we’ll be able to give you a more accurate picture of performance as soon as it becomes available.

    • Wi1son says:

      I get average 28 fps with i5 750 and 4870 with all graphics on low…you decide.

      • viverravid says:

        The game is CPU limited on almost all setups, so you could probably bump the graphics up to high and keep your 28fps.

        Raw clockspeed is the main determiner of performance. They took a gamble with putting all the gameplay code in lua – it makes it easier to mod, but also easier to write cheats for, and very good at chewing up CPU cycles.

        • LionsPhil says:

          That seems odd, given Lua is generally highly regarded for its performance as a scripting language, and writing the game logic in a scripting language was a workable idea all the way back for the original Unreal Tournament in the age of the sub-GHz single core that might even be called upon to do software rendering as well.

          • viverravid says:

            NS2 does almost everything – including player movement and prediction – in lua. One of the main performance issues is garbage collection on all the temporary vector objects iirc.

    • BrendanJB says:

      I’m running a Corei7 2.8ghz, 4gb DDR3 ram, 1TB 5400RPM HDD, and a GeForce 525m on Windows 7 64bit. I can run the game on all high with no AA at variable framerate of 30-50fps, except for when anyone fires a weapon. I don’t know if it’s a specific issue with my setup, but whenever there is muzzleflash on my screen the entire game drops to about 10fps. So there are still a few hiccups that need to be ironed out, but it’s definitely a lot better than it used to be.

  5. FlipJay says:

    You put an apostrophe in UIs. Please don’t turn into one of those.

  6. EPICTHEFAIL says:

    I want this game so badly. The sheer badness of Left 4 Dead versus means this is the only high-profile (ish) game with an asymmetrical multiplayer that has a chance of being good, provided your commander is not a bleeding idiot. Knowing the internet, this will almost certainly be the case in any games I join.

  7. Vandelay says:

    Are the Aliens not getting any more toys? Things already seem a little one sided when jet packs come out to play. Can only imagine the carnage the exo-suit will bring on top of that. (Might just be the few games I’ve played and I’m awaiting the onslaught of people saying the Aliens are currently op late game.)

    Few balance issues aside, loving this game though. Any RPS community for this yet?

    • cmc5788 says:

      The Aliens already have plenty of toys, they’re just down-tuned for a Marine team without exo. Now that the exo is in, the numbers can be adjusted to keep everything in line. The last thing they need is to add more stuff and make the job of balancing even harder. Feature complete, baby.

      • Vandelay says:

        Ah, makes sense.

        Definitely pleased they are at feature complete stage now. Should allow them to focus on getting all the bugs and performance issues ironed.

    • SPMaximus says:

      Gorge is probably getting webbing to help balance against jetpacks, but that probably wont make it in until after the game releases.

  8. Hensler says:

    Even though they don’t have too much in common, I forgot all about NS2 in my mad desire for Planetside 2. Seems like this has been in development forever, but it looks like it’s paying off.

  9. Dreforian says:

    Trailer did a good job of showing as much as telling. I LOVED the aliens’ tongue cam….jaw cam?
    I got it. MANDIBLE CAM. Something I’m reasonably sure I’ve never seen before. It makes me think of playing a first “person” zerg. I loved that when the hulk knocked away the exosuit’s guns, the exosuit smacked it right back. I also liked the tracking rather than cutting back and forth between frames of the gun firing and bullets impacting. I think other trailers/movies have worn out my taste for that technique.
    Will the exo really have melee? If my wallet relents and I purchase this shiny, I predict my first dilemma will be whether to go with a flamethrower or a teleporty alien.

  10. geldonyetich says:

    I enjoyed the original Natural Selection and have been looking forward to Natural Selection 2 for the longest (read: “delayed time and time again”) time.

    I shelled out for the beta via pre-ordering, and I’m encouraged to see that there’s ample-enough of a player community to at least have 3-4 full servers at a time. The main dread of there being a host of empty servers (as is oft the case for this genre of shooters) would seem not to apply to Natural Selection 2. Still, I can’t help but think the game would be better off going F2P with micro-transactions – that’s how TF2 got to be so popular, after all.

    Despite being gorgeous and harnessing much of the appeal of the original, Natural Selection 2 needs three core things:

    * Balance – For example, I’ve seen Marine Commanders bawled out for daring to waste our resources to build turrets. That’s crap. All tools need to be useful, viable choices, or else the balance simply isn’t there.

    * Better Performance – My poor babby computer with a 6.9 “graphics experience index” is insufficient to handle the demands of Natural Selection 2. Those little skulks are fast little buggers, and very difficult to hit when your frame rate is chugging, but unfortunately my situation is so dire that I even have a hard time reliably munching on slow, ponderous marines when playing a skulk. But then, I have yet to play the latest, supposedly-performance boosting patches.

    * Stability – Last time I played, the client crashed an average of once a match (which last about a half hour, sometimes dragging out to be considerably longer and more satisfying). Your mileage may vary.

    My experiences with Natural Selection 2′s beta state is that it is still very much a beta state, despite how long the game’s been getting worked on. The former problem I’m having has been caused by perpetual redesigns of core mechanics, while the latter problems are a result of an ambitious engine. How things will ultimately turn out with the game has yet to be determined, but it seems I’ve already bought it, so my stake in it is as solid as the next guy’s.

    • cmc5788 says:

      If you’ve taken some time away from trying it out, you should give it another shot. Performance/stability have been the primary focus and continue to be, so things are getting better rapidly. The difference between a few months of development on this game is really astounding.

  11. hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

    Glad to hear there are lots of BUG fixes in this one.

    Seriously, where is the pun chain?

  12. Brothabear says:

    omg..get some creativity and STOP dick-riding the Mech genre…..What a coincidence that HALO 4 also announced mechs…