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Rank: Team Dakota

Medals: Original Spark: Alpha ParticipantCommunity Team: CommunityTeam Dakota: This person is a member of Team Dakota.Beta Forum Participant: Beta Forum Participant

Posts: 125

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#1 Posted: Friday, December 13, 2013 1:44:27 PM(UTC)
Team Dakota is excited to release our first official patch for the Project Spark Windows 8 closed beta.

Since the beta began last week, we’ve added only a few hundred testers as we focused on resolving some problems with the game that we felt would impact the first user experience. In the past 8 days, we’ve been absolutely amazed by what our limited number of users have been able to create. We’ve had over 500 new user created levels shared. You can check out a two minute video highlighting some of the amazing stuff the community has made.

Client Update

The patch will be propagating out to the Windows Store in various regions shortly. In most cases, Windows will automatically update Project Spark when you launch the game, although some users may need to check the store and manually update.

Server Update

The new client update will require Team Dakota to perform a server-side update as well. Once the server-side update is begun, it’s expected to take about 4 hours to complete, but could possibly run longer. During this time, you will likely have limited or no access to the Project Spark servers. We will make an announcement on when the server update begins.

Weirdness Warning

There is the potential for users to experience some oddness during the client and/or server update process. Users with clients that have been updated before the server has finished updating may have limited or no connectivity. Certain items, levels, etc., may not show up until the server update is complete.

On the other hand, users without an updated client who try to connect to the upgraded server may also experience similar issues. The resolution for this is to manually update your client.

In order to minimize the impact on our existing beta testers, we will be waiting to do the server update until the client has propagated to most of our regions, which means we may not be able to provide much notice prior to scheduling and executing the server upgrade. Watch Facebook or Twitter for updates.

Patch Contents and Beta Keys

The main goal of our first beta patch was to resolve many urgent issues that were adversely affecting users. Once the patching has been completed and stability confirmed, we will begin sending out beta keys to everyone who signed up at and in chronological order based on when they signed up. We expect to do multiple invite waves per week, with thousands of keys in each wave, although this is subject to change based on many beta-related factors.

Patch Notes List


- Improved overall game performance.
- Fixed several crashes and improved stability.
- Fixed some major UGC related bugs.
- Made many improvements to Champions.
- Fixed several Crossroads issues.
- Various other improvements (detailed below).

Engine & Systems

Made several changes to the overall game engine and systems to improve performance and stability.

- Fixed a crash that could occur with certain out-of-date video drivers.
- Fixed an issue that could cause a crash when Spark Time expired while the client was minimized.
- Fixed an issue that could cause a crash when using touch and mouse wheel at the same time.
- Fixed an issue that would sometimes cause levels to get stuck forever "unpacking" when being loaded.
- Fixed an issue where the Crystal Shard was causing Very Bad Things™ to happen upon Crossroads save.
- Fixed an issue where tokens would not immediately show up if the user was disconnected shortly after purchase.
- Fixed several issues involving player created levels (UGC) becoming improperly locked.
- Fixed several issues that could cause the player to be stuck when going through the First Time User Experience (FTUE).
- Improved overall search functionality.
- Resolved a bug that sometimes prevented attack functions from properly playing associated sound effects.
- Resolved an issue that could sometimes cause a crash when doing character attachments in offline mode.
- Fixed a crash that sometimes occurred when the game was minimized and Windows 8 became locked.
- Fixed an issue where Spark Time was being incorrectly debited for UGC in some cases.
- Improved overall functionality of feed displays.
- Improved the tracking of UGC ratings for increased accuracy.
- Made several improvements to the level sharing system.
- Resolved a shader quality problem that could make invisible enemies appear visible in some video settings.


Made several tweaks to challenges to improve accuracy, clarity, and performance.

- Fixed an issue where the user wouldn't receive full credit for the "Play UGC for 20 minutes" challenge.
- Fixed an issue where some challenges wouldn’t show up around midnight.


Made several bug fixes and improvements to Champions.

- Fixed an issue where Karlsnor would sometimes slide along the ground instead of running normally, as any proper Goblin would.
- Resolved an issue where Karlsnor's dodge ability would sometimes place him in the terrain.
- Fixed an issue where Scarlett's multishot did too little damage and was adversely affected by gravity.
- Improved Scarlett's Decoy ability to improve effectiveness, because everyone at Team Dakota plays a Ranger. Also, it wasn't working well.
- Karlsnor will now properly target non-combat items with his ranged attack.
- Made it more apparent when Karlsnor's rage ability is ready to fire.
- Resolved an issue that prevented Scarlett's outgoing melee damage from displaying properly.
- Scarlett will now more easily interact/target non-combat items at range.
- Nerfed the amount of damage done by Karlsnor's meteor sword, because it was doing much more than intended. And also because Team Dakota hates goblins.
- Scarlett's caltrops can now be used as a single target or area effect mode.
- Scarlett's caltrops will now properly drop near her feet instead of shooting from her bow.
- The Shift key will no longer cause Scarlet to dodge. The F key remains the proper dodge button.
- Fixed an issue where Scarlett's arrows would sometimes get stuck in mid-air after the targeted enemy dies.
- Toned down effect of Karlsnor's Berserker Rage. Sure, he's mad, but he’s not too mad to see what he's doing.


Made general improvements and bug fixes to the overall Project Spark service environment.

- Fixed a rare issue that would prevent the user from playing in offline after a sudden service disconnection.
- Fixed an issue that caused the game to improperly request a beta key from users that were already registered.
- Fixed an issue that prevented the Profile Info Box from displaying in some cases, even when the user was properly connected to the service.
- Resolved an issue that would prevent some users from entering a beta key after launching the game.


Made several bug fixes, tweaks, and general improvements to Team Dakota and User Generated Content levels.

- Added keyboard/mouse functionality to moving boxes in the "Suspension" level.
- Corrected some sound level weirdness in the "Synthesizer" level.
- Fixed an issue that prevented some users from loading the "Swan Song" level.
- Resolved an issue that prevented the "Modular Dungeon 3.0" level from loading.
- Fixed an issue that would sometimes prevent Showcase Levels from loading properly.
- Resolved an issue where some enemies wouldn't fully render in the "Retro Reborn" level.
- Fixed an issue where the box in the "Suspension" level would sometimes go flying when pushed against the ramp.
- Fixed some minor animation issues in the "Swan Song" level.
- Updated the level descriptions for several Team Dakota UGC levels.

User Interface

Did a thorough pass over the UI to fix several minor bugs and improve the overall experience.

- Added the option to turn off First Time User Experience (FTUE) tooltips.
- The FTUE will now only trigger during your initial experience.
- Adjusted the swirl effect displayed during sculpting to make it easier to see.
- Changed the confirmation dialog text when sharing a level to improve clarity.
- Changed the default cursor from 150% to the much larger 350%.
- Corrected a text error for the cancel button when being asked to overwrite a save game.
- Corrected an issue that would cause the character to be unselected when moving with touch.
- Fix an issue where improper messaging would be sent when playing in offline mode.
- Fixed an issue that made Help Dialogs continue to display after being set to off.
- Fixed an issue that prevented the Game Guides from being opened in certain resolutions.
- Fixed an issue that would sometimes prevent Marketplace offers from properly displaying a title or description.
- Fixed an issue where Brush control UI was being displayed while using Power and Attach tools via mouse input.
- Resolved an issue where the background for the brain editor got weird when certain brains were selected.
- Fixed several issues involving crashes during the opening video.
- Resolved an issue that prevented the player from rotating correctly when using touch and mouse control.
- Resolved an issue where the Terrain Material bar would sometimes improperly display after exiting the Prop Gallery.
- Resolved an issue where the multi-edit options could appear cut off and without a background.
- Updated the icon for "Meter" tile to make it easier to view the value shown.
- Woodlands Peak Path will now use the proper texture when painting undersides.


Edit: Accidentally left in one "festival" patch note, and after Tarrah went to great lengths to make sure I absolutely knew it hadn't made the patch. :)

Edited by user Friday, January 10, 2014 3:46:52 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

thanks 19 users thanked MikeLescault for this useful post.
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