|Release Date||24 Jul 2020|
|Previous Version||Next Version|
- 1 Introduction
- 2 SCP-096 Rework
- 3 Spawning Tickets
- 4 Stamina
- 5 Status Effects
- 6 Decontamination Displays
- 7 Alpha Warhead Lights
- 8 Main Menu and UX Overhaul
- 9 Intractable
- 10 Balance
- 11 SCPs
- 12 Quality-of-Life
- 13 Miscellaneous
- 14 Afterword
- 15 Other Changes
- 16 Conclusion
We’re very happy to announce that, after a long and challenging development process, SCP: Secret Laboratory's next update has arrived and is now fully available to everyone. Scopophobia rivals Megapatch 2 in its scale - this update brings major reworks, large performance improvements, rewritten systems, and more.
Scopophobia (n.) - an abnormal fear of being looked at or seen.
The Shy Guy is among the oldest classes in the game. Although mechanically it mostly works well, it uses an outdated model, and all of its voice files are taken from SCP - Containment Breach. SCP-096 was long overdue for a revamp, and its complete rework is the highlight and namesake of Scopophobia - including a brand-new model, completely revamped sounds, and a fully remade user experience.
SCP-096 is now our most polished and well-presented SCP to date, and we'd like to keep its exact mechanics a surprise for players to discover in-game. As a result, they won't be in these patch notes, but all of the changes to SCP-096, big and small, exist in-game for you to discover and play with - or be killed by. If you've played or followed the beta, you may know already what's in store for you, but if not, then keep an eye out!
SCP-096’s character info screen has also been fully updated to match its new mechanics, to keep you and your teammates up to date. Technically, you can also just go into a local server and view the info screen from there, but is there any fun in that?
In the interest of transparency, though, here's a few highlights you can look forward to:
- - Full revamp of the rage system, scaling effective health and duration with the amount of targets.
- - Three active abilities - some used when docile, and some used in rage.
- - Completely original model, animations, audio, and voice acting made by our amazingly-talented artists and sound designers.
- - Is now the tallest SCP in the game.
SCP-096 received extensive changes during the beta period for Scopophobia, and right now we hope that they’re in an acceptable state. We’ll be working internally to provide further refinements in upcoming tweaks.
One of SL's longest-standing problems is its respawn system. While it lets players get back into the round after dying instead of having to wait for it to end, it also has no limits; as a result, squads can constantly respawn and go into the facility, throwing themselves at remaining targets until they win through sheer numbers. This never feels satisfying to do, and often results in the game dragging on far past when people wanted it to end - especially if the last squad member is away or hides to wait for a respawn.
Spawning tickets is our solution to this problem. In short, rather than having an unlimited pool of reinforcements, both military teams - the Nine-Tailed Fox and Chaos Insurgency - draw from a limited pool of tickets. Every time a respawn wave occurs, every respawned player consumes one ticket from the pool.
The likelihood of each team spawning is now determined by their tickets. If a team has twice as many tickets as the other, then that team will spawn twice as often. Once a team runs out of tickets, it won't respawn! If this happens to the Nine-Tailed Fox, they’ll be permanently disabled for the match; the Chaos Insurgency, however, can continue to spawn if they gain more tickets somehow. If both teams are out of tickets, the Chaos Insurgency will be the only team that spawns.
Tickets aren't just consumed. Different actions throughout the facility also cause tickets to replenish for the various teams. These actions are as follows:
- - Starts with 14 tickets
- - +1 whenever a Class-D escapes
- - +1 whenever a Scientist dies
- - +2 whenever a cuffed Scientist escapes
- - +2 whenever a Class-D or CI uses an SCP item
- - Starts with 24 tickets
- - +1 whenever a Scientist escapes
- - +1 whenever a cuffed Class-D escapes
- - +1 for every 25% max health lost on an SCP, up to 4 total tickets per SCP
All of these values, including default tickets, SCP health loss intervals, and ticket returns for various events can be configured by server owners in the gameplay config. Additionally, although we highly recommend using the system, owners can opt out of it by simply disabling it altogether.
As a disclaimer, although this is a refinement of the current system and an iteration upon outdated mechanics, we do intend to modify win conditions more heavily in future updates. Spawning tickets may or may not be removed when new win conditions make their way into SL, and we'll likely be refining it as time goes on until that point!
From its conception, SCPSL has been a fast-paced game. Human classes can run constantly at a fast pace, and even the slowest SCP classes move at a jogging pace. Going into this update, we wanted to place more emphasis on the movement system without slowing down the overall pace of the game.
In order to accomplish this, we've introduced a new system - stamina, also known as a run meter. While sprinting, you will slowly deplete your stamina, and you can't sprint while out of stamina. Walking, standing still, or sneaking will allow your stamina to replenish so that you can run again.
Default values for this are very forgiving. It takes about 20 seconds at a full sprint to run out of stamina, and it regenerates in less time than that, meaning that you'll still be sprinting more often than not if you like to play the game fast and hard. In order to keep the pace of the game the same, walking speed has received a substantial increase for human classes. Sprint speed has also been increased, but by a much smaller amount.
Stamina's main purpose is as a design tool to interact with various parts of the game in a better way, and we've added a few of these already (as you can see in the Balance Changes segment.) We've been very careful in designing and tweaking stamina throughout the testing period to get it to a point where it doesn't feel strangulating to play with and so that it serves as an addition to make movement more interesting instead of restricting it heavily.
Stamina doesn't currently affect SCPs in any way - only humans. Stamina does, however, play a part in a lot of different status effects, and so disabling it entirely will cause some of them to behave strangely, as well as providing a nerf to revised items such as adrenaline and SCP-207.
A Note on Configuration
When we were initially planning stamina, we were nervous of the public response. As a result, when the feature was announced, and public reception was mixed, we said at the time that we would allow server owners to fully configure, or even remove, stamina.
However, as time has passed, and the feature has become more refined, our development teams have gradually decided that allowing heavy configuration of stamina can and will result in an unhealthy dynamic between servers and the game's overall intended balance. So, at least for the time being, we've decided to keep stamina hardcoded. Unless modified by third-party mods, stamina will be the same across servers. Mods or plugins can modify stamina's values rather easily, but configuration won't be a vanilla feature for the game.
Our reasons for this choice are as follows:
Stamina will play a large part in further balancing of the game. SCPs will interact with it, and disabling or heavily modifying stamina will leave future additions or balance amendments feeling incomplete or broken;
Several important new systems now interact with stamina, such as status effects, and without stamina, they may behave improperly or result in errors;
Server-side stamina configurations will result in inconsistent experiences between different players, and cause confusion as to what is and isn't an intended feature.
This doesn't mean that we're done with stamina, or that we're forcing it to remain in its current state. We know this feature - and this decision - will be controversial, and although feedback has thus far been mostly positive, we'll be closely watching general preferences and the overall public response to stamina. If stamina ends up being a feature that the vast majority of people hate, or that no longer fulfills its purpose, then we may remove it entirely.
We ask that you keep a close eye on how matches flow in light of this decision, and let us know how stamina feels, both as an SCP or as one of the game's many human classes. Feedback is a very big part of what goes into our balance decisions, and this choice wasn't one we made lightly.
Our second Devlog spoke about status effects, and they've been fully realized and implemented in this update. For those unfamiliar with the concept, a status effect is a temporary change to your general condition or the way you play the game; for instance, SCP-207 is a status effect that speeds you up while slowly draining your health.
Scopophobia includes a slew of new status effects! All of them can be applied via a new Remote Admin panel and text-based RA queries, and some of them occur naturally in-game. In addition to migrating all old temporary conditions to the new system (like SCP-268, SCP-207, and the Pocket Dimension), this update includes the following new status effects:
- - Amnesia prevents you from opening your inventory or reloading.
- - Bleeding is a damage-over-time that starts out dealing high damage and decreases over time.
- - Blinded hugely blurs your screen, preventing you from making out any detail.
- - Burned increases all damage taken by a small amount.
- - Concussed blurs your screen depending on how fast you turn your camera.
- - Deafened greatly muffles everything you hear.
- - Decontaminating is now a status effect, and drains 10% of your max health per second until death.
- - Disabled cripples your movement speed.
- - Ensnared stops you from moving at all.
- - Hemorrhage quickly causes damage while sprinting.
- - Poisoned is the inverse of Bleeding - it starts with low damage and slowly ramps up.
In addition, there are also some stamina-related statuses:
- - Invigorated causes running to cost no stamina, although running will still pause stamina regeneration even if it doesn't have a stamina cost.
- - Asphyxiated quickly drains stamina, and drains health if stamina is gone.
- - Exhausted cuts max stamina and stamina regeneration rate in half.
- - Panic slightly increases all stamina drain.
Some old mechanics have also been moved to status effects. For instance, 939's vision is now tied entirely to status effects, meaning admins can place the effect onto other classes! However, be careful when using these effects with RA; many aren't intended to be placed onto classes they shouldn't naturally occur on, and doing so can cause glitches and oddities for them.
Medical items can be used to cure status effects to varying degrees. For instance, SCP-500 reduces the damage of Bleeding and Poisoned to their minimum values, while painkillers can remove Concussed and Burned outright. With the advent of negative effects on players, it was astute to give some medical items tweaks to balance, and to give them new niches. Almost every effect interacts with medical items in some way - experiment!
As mentioned before, though some of these are already implemented, some of them only exist in code and remote admin. In adding these effects, we wanted to provide a design tool for the future, as well as give plugin devs and server admins a new mechanic to tinker with in different ways.
This was a feature requested a long time ago by our patrons. Now, in Scopophobia, we were able to make it a reality, thanks to our rewrite of decontamination code!
In both checkpoints in Light Containment Zone, you can now find large screens on the LCZ side of the doors. These displays show the remaining time until the zone is decontaminated, featuring animations for starting up and counting down, as well as an appearance change during the final 30 seconds. If the server has decontamination disabled for whatever reason, it'll simply show the Foundation's logo instead.
A little-known fact is that decontamination actually happens after just under 12 minutes, instead of 15 minutes - this was a deliberate choice to keep the game moving at a fast pace while preserving the feeling of rushing to get prepared and armed in early-game. As such, you'll see this happen in real-time on the displays, which will count down at a slightly sped-up rate, slowing down whenever reaching an announcement or during the final 30 seconds.
Alpha Warhead Lights
In the early versions of SL, whenever the alpha warhead was enabled, all the lights in the facility became red, which increased the tension of the match and provided a better atmosphere. Due to the lights having outdated code, we had to cut this feature some time before Megapatch 2's release. Bringing them back has been requested a lot since then, and as a result, for 10.0, we've rewritten the system and put it back into the game.
Once the Alpha Warhead turns on, all lights in the facility - even those in places that previously lacked red lights, like the Entrance Zone - will turn bright red, reflecting the countdown taking place and providing a visual aid to accompany the siren. The lights will turn back to normal once the warhead is cancelled, but will remain on for the rest of the match if the warhead detonates.
Main Menu and UX Overhaul
Although Secret Laboratory's HUD has always been functional enough to accomplish what it sets out to do, it's very simple - especially its main menu. Part of our update cycle for this patch included a careful revamp of our entire user experience. Not only does this include the in-game UI, but it also includes the whole main menu!
The server browser has been completely revamped. You now have a lot more flexibility over how you find, view, and enter servers, including a long overdue system: Favorites. This allows you to 'favorite' servers by clicking a star icon on their browser entry, then switching to a Favorites tab that lets you see only servers that you’ve marked as favorites. This browser also includes a Refresh button and a Rejoin button, to join the last server you were connected to, and you can click on a server's entry to view its info without having to switch screens.
Other tabs of note are Official, which shows all official servers; History, which shows a history of all the servers you've played on before; and Friends, which shows any servers your friends are connected to. In addition, when connecting to a server, you'll see a representation of your connection progress, along with dioramas from around the facility and tips to offer flavor and advice.
We've also overhauled the Settings tab, which features true toggle buttons, dropdowns, and switching between tabs without having to go into submenus. Every single aspect of the main menu has been iterated upon and tweaked into a modernized, less simplistic version. You should find the menu faster, more performant, and more effective than it ever has been.
Let us know what you think!
In Scopophobia, we've introduced a framework to interact with objects in the facility to display an image on your HUD. This feature is currently very small, and only exists in a handful of places, but we felt it was worth mentioning. In the future, it may be used for things such as computer displays, or documents that provide worldbuilding for SL's setting.
Right now, you can interact with the artwork in the Class-D cells to see a zoomed-in detail view of them. Additionally, in light of our first ARG, which happened during the last weeks of 2019, we've also created an intractable in-game plaque commemorating the event and featuring the names of some of its participants, which is located in the place where it all began.
This feature may see a lot of use in upcoming updates. Stay tuned!
As part of our ongoing effort to spice up the core gameplay, we've tweaked the balance in the following ways in order to accommodate the new mechanics introduced in Scopophobia.
Hi! It's me, the anonymous voice for developer's notes. We've done these in previous changelogs to show transparency in certain changes and why we've made them, and we see no reason to stop, so you can find little tidbits throughout the balance sections about why we did certain things.
-Floating Changelog Voice
Stamina will undoubtedly change how players move through the level, and so as to not make it an "island" (a mechanic with no interconnecting parts to the rest of the game) we've implemented it in different ways throughout the base game, including shifting some of adrenaline's power to a new stamina-preserving effect.
-Floating Changelog Voice
- - Flashbangs now cause the Deafened status effect
- - Frag grenades now apply Burned and Concussed to human players, with duration scaling with range; at point-blank, these effects are applied for 10 seconds
- - SCP-500 now removes the Concussed and Deafened status effects, and reduces the damage of Bleeding and Poisoned to their lowest possible value
- - Medkits now remove the Bleeding and Burned status effects
- - Adrenaline now removes the Concussed status effect
- - Adrenaline now grants 30 AHP, from 50
- - Adrenaline now grants the Invigorated status effect for 20 seconds
- - Painkillers now remove the Burned and Concussed status effects
- - When consumed, SCP-207 grants infinite stamina while its effects remain on the player
- - Deals half damage against SCPs
- - Magazine size reduced to 75, down from 100
This is a tremendous change, and one with large ramifications. The Logicer has consistently been the strongest weapon since the game's release, sporting a huge magazine, high damage, and rapid rate of fire. Coupled with the fact that all Chaos Insurgents spawn with the weapon, and it meant that nearly any SCP could be consistently killed with relative ease in any situation where more than a few players encountered it at the same time - especially the new SCP-096 - which obviously breaks intended balance. Next update, we'd like to rework the Logicer into something completely different, or even replace it entirely. However, in its current state, it would be difficult to do this without making the update take even longer or adjusting more weapons, and so, as such, we're greatly reducing its power against SCPs. The weapon still remains a powerhouse capable of effectively dispatching threats at close range, but it should no longer be a guaranteed death sentence for SCPs that aren't 939.
-Floating Changelog Voice
The Heavy Barrel in conjunction with the Gyroscopic Stabilizer was an incredibly strong combination, being a straight upgrade in nearly all situations unless you wanted to use a silencer. Both attachments have received adjustments in Scopophobia.
-Floating Changelog Voice
- - The Heavy Barrel now reduces firing rate by 20% on the E-11-SR and the P90
- - The Gyroscopic Stabilizer now greatly widens the crosshair on the E-11-SR
Our intent with these changes isn't to nerf them outright. Heavy Barrel is no longer essentially a straight upgrade, and instead deals the same DPS as the base E-11. The goal of the change is to shift the attachment to be stronger at medium and long ranges (because of the higher damage per shot and thus its decreased falloff) but worse at close-ranges than the normal weapon (because of the slower firing rate making it easier to miss shots.) This change applies to the P90 as well, both for consistency and because the heavy barrel turned the P90 into the weapon with the highest DPS in the game. The Gyroscopic Stabilizer is another attachment with a straight buff - except in this case, instead of a negligible downside, it has no downside. Rather than a numbers nerf, which feels like a temporary change, we decided to give it a unique downside. This allows it to be a strong attachment for players who prefer to aim-down-sights or use long-range scope attachments without penalizing them for playing to its strengths.
-Floating Changelog Voice
- -Movement speed increased to 6 m/s (was 5.6 m/s)
SCP-049 has been the slowest SCP in-game for quite some time, and with the increase in walking speed conferred by the addition of stamina, we discovered that people now walked so quickly that SCP-049 could simply be out-walked. Because 049's slow speed has been a consistent problem in the past as well, we've decided to tentatively bump it up to match that of SCP-106, in hopes that the good doctor will now perform better in a post-stamina environment.
-Floating Changelog Voice
- - Windup on attacks has been removed (was previously 0.2s)
- - Hands are now less prominent on the screen
- - Attacks now destroy windows
Zombies have been one of the most inconsistent classes in SL since their original conception due to outdated code and design practices. We recently revisited their code, where we adjusted some of these old elements and removed the windup on the attacks to make them feel less clunky to use. They should now feel much more consistent to play.
-Floating Changelog Voice
- - Attacks now inflict Amnesia for 3 seconds
- - Multiple attacks will add onto the duration of the effect
- - Attacks now consistently deal 65 damage, instead of a random amount between 50 and 80
SCP-939 fills a strong role right now as a brawler, able to catch up to humans in a chase and bring them down. Stamina may be able to make SCP-939 much stronger, as it'll be able to catch humans after they become exhausted, and so we felt this was a good time to adjust its balance a bit. Randomized damage numbers are something we've been moving away from, as you can see with the standardization of weapon damage and past changes to SCP-049-2's damage. 65 is the average of the old numbers, meaning its balance will stay statistically unchanged, but players should no longer be able to survive more bites than they should be able to if the damage rolls low, and conversely, they won't be able to survive too few bites if that damage rolls high. Finally, Amnesia is meant to serve as another way to apply pressure to humans if they're hit once - 3 seconds isn't much, but it incentivizes getting out of range and neuters combat effectiveness towards 939 at point-blank.
-Floating Changelog Voice
- - SCP-106 can now walk through windows
- - Allowed SCP-079 to lock down rooms in Entrance Zone as well as more rooms in Heavy Containment
- - Tesla gates now do more damage per tick, but only tick three times; the net effect is that the damage per blast is greatly reduced but is still immediately lethal to humans, SCP-106, and SCP-049-2, but will no longer one-shot high-health SCPs
These are wide-spanning changes, but they're not final. In fact, it's highly likely they'll receive changes after they've had some time to exist for a bit. For Megapatch 2, we released 9.1.0 - Megapatch Minipatch - as a response to ongoing feedback and to further refine the changes introduced in the update, and it's likely the same thing will happen here. Let us know your thoughts!
- This update also includes a bunch of smaller changes that didn't fit into any of these other categories. In no particular order:
- Adjusted compression and import settings across many of the game's assets. This has resulted in a dramatic improvement in RAM usage with no drawbacks and no visible difference in quality!
- Dropped flashlights now have a light source
- Players now leave behind ragdolls and drop their items when leaving the server; disconnected SCPs will play their recontainment announcement
- Ragdolls now maintain the velocity their player had on death; this includes SCP-173's broken chunks, each of which have independent physics
- The info screen now toggles on and off, instead of requiring a held keypress
- The info screen fades in and out, instead of simply appearing and vanishing
- Revamped the appearance of the hitmarker to be more consistent and intrude less on the crosshair. Did you know that the old hitmarker was off-center? You do now.
- Updated the textures of the Research Supervisor keycard and the Cadet keycard to show their new names instead of their old ones (which were Major Scientist and Senior Guard, respectively)
- Remade keycard inventory icons in neutral lighting - they previously had a blue tint applied to them
- The health bar now has a more stylized appearance
- Artificial health now always displays separately, and shows its remaining amount as a number
- AHP is now visible to spectators
- Status effects, such as SCP-268, are now visible to spectators
- Improved the appearance of the overlay that displays when at low health
- Expanded CASSIE's vocabulary, as well as adding prefixes and suffixes to it, such as "pro-", "anti-", "un-", "-ish", and "-like"
- Implemented a custom parser for CASSIE so that different localizations of decimal points produce the same result
- Trying to fire a gun while it has no ammo in its magazine is now audible to all players, instead of just the person trying to shoot
- The MicroHID now breaks windows
- Pickup up items now shows a circle around the cursor that gradually fills, instead of a simple progress bar
- Picking up items is now handled on the server, preventing cheats from allowing instant item pickups and equalizing pickup times between players with different ping
- Decontamination is now handled server-side, and should perform slightly better
- Added a new "PLEASE WAIT" screen when launching the game
- Updated translations with community contributions
- Updated the credits list
- Updated the RA interface with new panels for status effects and spawning tickets and added new command queries pertaining to these
- Added a new RA command, pfx, to assign status effects to players with the given intensity (syntax: pfx (list of IDs) [effect name]=[effect intensity].)
- NOTE FOR ABOVE: Not all status effects utilize intensity; for most effects, you'll want to use tpfx, listed below.
- Added a new RA command, tpfx, to assign status effects to players with a duration (syntax: tpfx (list of IDs) [effect name]=[effect duration in seconds]. for example, "tpfx 1 poisoned=10" will assign player number 1 the Poisoned effect for 10 seconds.)
- LocalAdmin now uses a cleaner console display and should perform faster
- Removed unused script assets in order to improve file sizes and loading times
- As a consequence of improvements to door code, the "ACCESS DENIED" animation now lasts about half as long
- Fully rewrote some backend systems for stability, expansion, and performance
- Greatly optimized tesla gate performance
- Blood no longer appears on doors due to consistent rendering issues
- Ragdolls now disappear after two minutes to conserve long-term performance; this can be configured per-server using the new config key "ragdoll_cleanup_time". If set to 0, ragdolls will remain forever, identical to the old system
- Added additional colliders throughout the level to prevent nonsensical deaths as well as out-of-bounds glitching
- Implemented the ability for servers or plugins to change a player's display name
- Added the ability for servers to change the intercom's displayed text through RA
- Added a server config for a multiplier applied to damage dealt by friendly fire
- Bypass mode now works to open the panel in the Alpha Warhead control panel in the Surface Zone
- Blocked @here and @everyone mentions in cheater reports. (You jerks.)
- Fixes towards players appearing twice on the same server
- Fixed several broken achievements
- Fixed The Bloodening(tm) by preventing blood decals occasionally having their scale set extremely high
- Fixed SCP-207's third-person model having collision
- Fixed the Tutorial class model being locked into the pose of holding a keycard
- Fixed a malformed collider in LCZ straightaways that allowed players to scale the wall
- Fixed a collider in SCP-106's chamber that allowed players to slide down the side of the floating cube to avoid fall damage
- Fixed the elevators at Gate A and Gate B teleporting items into the void
- Fixed elevators also moving items and grenades that were sitting just outside of their doors
- Fixed sinkholes being able to spawn if their spawn chance was set to 0
- Fixed a long-standing culling issue when standing inside the Class-D cells
- Fixed frag grenade chain explosions not working on dedicated servers
- Fixed the squad size limit config being ignored
- Fixed some missing materials in room prefabs
- Fixed an issue where SCP-939 couldn't see thrown grenades
- Fixed SCP-939 being unable to see SCP-173's model through walls
- Gate B's elevator interactable on the Surface Zone no longer leads to Gate A in the facility
- Huge improvements to our backend systems and performance stability
- A lot of other things we probably forgot to list!
Originally, we wanted to release this update in March of this year, in a much different world. In May, we released a public beta so that you could experience the update and have a say in its development. Now, four months past our initial release time, we're releasing it at the end of July. Suffice it to say, a release this late in the year isn't what we had planned. We lost a lot of goodwill when Megapatch 2 took so long, and we wanted to make up for it with this update, and move back towards a regular release schedule.
From all of us: we're sorry it took so long. Though an apology doesn't make up for the delay, we still mean it, and we hope that Scopophobia can be fun enough that it was worth the wait. We appreciate the continued support very much. The amount of changes in this patch is even greater than those of Megapatch 2, and we hope you're as happy with the update as we are.
Expect a patch coming soon within the next few months with refinements that we couldn't squeeze into Scopophobia, as well as changes and tweaks depending on how things go from here. After that, we'll certainly be trying to have some fun with the holidays later this year, and beyond that... well, we have ideas.
In the meantime, enjoy what we've made together... and don't look behind you.