Multiverse Version 3.5.4

It’s 2023 and here we are with another update for The Multiverse Launcher. The release information as always is below, but first I need your attention for a moment.

We care a great deal about the integrity of the launcher, which is why each update is tested thoroughly before being released to the public. Due to some beta-testers having other priorities at the moment, public releases aren’t occurring as frequently as we would like.

To speed up this process, we need more people to help test. If you’re a fanatic of Populous: The Beginning and would like to get early access to the launcher’s updates with the goal of finding and squashing bugs, please contact myself or Toxicity on Discord or by email.

With that out of the way, I’ve got some of my highlights and a great big change log for you to ingest. Remember, to install this update you’ll need to run the updated installer:
>> Click here to download the Multiverse Launcher

WARNING: As always, your launcher settings may reset with the new version. When the launcher is opened for the first time it may crash and restart automatically, and any previous game saves may be unplayable.

New Followers(?)!

I’m not sure how well a ghoul will follow your commands, but the launcher now supports the creations of user Zyraw (most known for his creations of Ascension: Chapter 1 and the glorious Boat Races); new followers that have been created for use in upcoming campaigns.

Archer, Melee Ghoul & Ranged Ghoul

I’ll let you speculate as to how the Archer, Melee Ghoul & Ranged Ghoul will affect gameplay, as you are sure to soon see them in the promised Ascension: Chapter 2 and Witching Hour campaigns.

Smoother Flybys

Gameplay has been 60 frames per second (FPS) since version 3 of the launcher arrived, however, the flybys that introduce the player to the world were always capped at 30fps for technical reasons. Our lord and saviour Toxicity has decided to raise his staff at these technical issues and send them into the abyss (and unlike Gandalf, Toxicity followed through with his threat).

All your flybys will now be markedly smoother and you’ll soon be forgetting about how lethargic our level introductions once were.

30 FPS vs 60 FPS

High Definition Cutscenes

Before you start getting too excited at the thought of the original cutscenes being upscaled to 4k, this is a change that means the launcher now supports higher quality video formats. Campaign creators can now include such videos to inject even more life into their stories. You’ll be asked to install LAV Filters when installing the latest release, and you’ll need to do this if you’d like your launcher to be compatible.

Priests tell very convincing tales

Have you ever been in on the brink of world domination only to have it abruptly halted because enemy followers cannot be converted by your preachers due to having reached the population limit?

No longer! Your priests can now turn even the most devout enemies into believers of your own Shaman.

Stop cheating!

Only if you want to, that is. To deactivate cheats you must now enter the BYRNE command again, the same way that they are enabled. This allows users to keep cheats enabled whilst having access to the console for other shenanigans.

Less frustrating hover timers

Some people, myself included, can get a little frustrated at trying to click the action boxes that pop-up when you hover over or right-click units, buildings and other objects, because they disappear so quickly.

The latest update has extended the time that these little windows remain visible and can be interacted with, hopefully removing some of the aggravation that they’ve caused in the past.

Are you a scripter?

There have been numerous changes to the support for LUA scripting that the launcher provides. If you’re one of the few who enjoys creating content for others to enjoy, make sure to bookmark Toxicity’s github page:

In future updates...

You could expect to see;
  • New world editor

Full Patch Notes

  • Added Camera View setting which can make the game run top view mode by default; ending flybys, world view switching and level restarts are taken into account and will return the user their preferred view mode.
  • Flybies now play at 60 fps by default. Their speed and duration have been adjusted to not cause dizziness.
  • Added support for custom movie custcenes in HD format.
  • Added a CTRL + R (reboundable) command for restarting the level during Speedrun mode.
  • Archers and Ghouls are now unlocked and accessible in every campaign, however, they first require some configuration before being fully usable.
  • Added new feature Owned Stoneheads under Mods category. When enabled, the human player can no longer pray at Stonehead not marked as blue or neutral.
  • AI's hardcoded base spell bucket rate can now be adjusted on a per tribe basis. This controls how quickly they can "re-charge" their spells.
  • The sprogging rate for every Hut stage can now be adjusted on a per tribe basis. This controls how quickly braves are spawned from huts.
  • The population cap increase from built Huts can now be adjusted on a per tribe basis.
  • The max. mana amount drained by training troops can now be adjusted on a per tribe basis.
  • Added support for 8-directional sprite animations (HSPR bank).
  • Similar to the original Swamp spell, the DoT variant can now have a maximum kill count before disappearing.
  • DoT Swamp can now be configured to be removable similar to normal Swamps.
  • Lua's debug library is now available for use whilst playing in Develop mode.
  • The Installer now includes LAVFilters as an optional install.
  • Fixed the ALT + C screenshot command.
  • Fixed a 1.01 bug with trigger linked spells.
  • Fixed a 1.01 issue with camera tracking where it would not reset upon level restart.
  • Fixed a race condition where memory was being allocated twice without first being freed in Raw Input mode.
  • Fixed an issue where the Scripting Manager was disposing of in-use scripts upon failing to load a level (version mismatch).
  • Fixed an issue where the Scripting Manager was mistakenly removing the Parent script when disposing of unneeded Child scripts.
  • Fixed a crash occuring when the user returned a wrong variable type from within Lua Events.
  • Fixed nondescriptive error messages being shown to the user when errors occured in certain Event callbacks.
  • Fixed mouse becoming invisible when inside encyclopedia screen.
  • Fixed several 1.01 issues that prevented Firewarriors from consistently shooting their targets.
  • Fixed 1.01 bug where Firewarriors would often run aimlessly and endlessly on the map's shorelines.
  • Fixed 1.01 bug where key modifiers got stuck after ALT-tabbing.
  • Fixed two crashes that would occur when an invalid person tried to execute a command.
  • Fixed a crash that would occur with invalid persons queueing buildings.
  • Fixed a crash that would occur in the Level Select menu after visiting the Solar System through the "New Game" button.
  • Fixed incorrect usages of the memset function that were causing it to write beyond the allocated memory.
  • Fixed issues where the AI would sometimes spam spells on the same position, most notably with the Tornado spell.
  • Fixed a logic issue where the AI would only use the Tornado spell on training huts with people inside.
  • Fixed an issue where the AI would fail to destroy buildings targeted by their Tornado spell.
  • Fixed event notifications not having the correct color when using tribe skins.
  • Fixed DirectInput mouse not working. Please note that some MV features will not work with DirectInput.
  • German translation fixes and new additions (Thanks to Nefarius).
  • The Installer will now allow users to change the install path every launch.
  • Update notifications will now include a warning to let users know their save files might become incompatible after updating.
  • Preachers can now convert followers when past the original 200 population limit.
  • Multiverse will now always default to and force load the English localization.
  • Firewarriors will now always shoot at the center point of buildings.
  • Pressing TAB+F11 will no longer toggle BYRNE cheats mode off. To do so, type "BYRNE" again.
  • Painted textures (Blocks) will now only be drawn in revealed fog.
  • Added some delay to the searches that the AI Shaman performs for enemy towers and training huts.
  • Increased the visibility duration of TID menus (e.g. when hovering over people or buildings).