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Clockwork Empires Early Access gets its first monthly update

by: Jeff -
More On: Clockwork Empires

It's been a month since Clockwork Empires went into Early Access via Steam, and now we're getting our first of many monthly updates, dubbed "Conscript Steelcog versus THE MURDERCULT" by the developers. In Clockwork Empires you take on the role of a junior bureaucrat in a fledgling colony in the new world. Your job is to order the colonists around to ensure they stay alive (cabbage crops good. Invading fish-people bad), keep them busy so they don't join a cult (As they say, idle hands are the elder squid god's playground) and most importantly, bring glory to the Queen and her empire (and most most importanly, earn enough prestige to get a promotion).

Here's a brief overview of things to expect in the latest patch:

  • Cults do more interesting things like build shrines, sabotage crops, and murder
  • New ways for your colonists to die in the form of a new monster
  • A new tropical biome
  • Improvements and updates to farming and militia commands
  • Ability to save and load the game
  • A lot of graphics business involving texture cleanup and something called almost-zero draw overhead pass
  • Fish people now have guns and will eat colonists. But they might feel bad about it.

If you're interested in more details, you can read the full patch notes after the jump. If you want to know more about Clockwork Empires you can check out their website- Even if you don't  know anything about the game, the devlog usually makes for a good read. If you're ready to plunge into the Early Access, you can get it for $29.99 via Steam.

The Gaslamp Games Development Special


It is time for the monthly update to Clockwork Empires! This month is v31, or as we like to call it, Conscript Steelcog versus THE MURDERCULT.

This being a monthly update, the changes will go live to every Clockwork Empires player via Steam.

We have also updated our Clockwork Empires: Development Progress report! Please check it out if you’re interested in the overall status of the Clockwork Empires project broken down into excruciating detail along with pictures of cats.

(Don't own the game yet? Clockwork Empires can be purchased on ClockworkEmpires.com via Humble or from Steam.)

Patch Notes:

Clockwork Empires v31 update: “Conscript Steelcog versus THE MURDERCULT”

New Features Overview

  • Cults do more interesting things (murder, farm sabotage, shrines)
  • A new monster may appear (in very special circumstances)
  • Added Tropical biome (new plants, new animals, new crops, new foods to cook, and lots of Fishpeople)
  • Many improvements to farming and crops
  • Militia conscription added and military control improved
  • Fishpeople now have guns, feelings; may eat your colonists.
  • First pass at almost-zero draw overhead (AZDO) pass (requires config file opt-in)
  • Lots of texture cleanup to reduce memory footprint of game

And much more! Everything is basically better, details below.

Detailed Update Changelog


  • First pass at almost-zero draw overhead (AZDO) pass
  • We did lots of texture resizing and texture cleanup to reduce memory footprint of game
  • Save/load implemented
  • Save/load stability improved
  • unicode username support (for users with non-English characters in their windows username)
  • performance improvements
  • fixed many crashes
  • FIXED: Save crash when saving a game after a character has been buried
  • FIXED: Save crash when creating a job with a triple dependency
  • fixed yet more crashes
  • some really weird rendering errors fixed


  • added new tropical embark position
  • can select tropical embark position on embark map
  • added a ton of new content for tropical biomes
  • biome generators modified for tropical biome creation


  • FIXED: crash when attempting to drop a body
  • FIXED: corpse dropping errors
  • FIXED: crash caused by going into infinite loop of trying to drop temporary tools
  • FIXED: crash with overseer jobs being deleted
  • fixed up some memory icons (incl. temp fix for frontier justice memory icon)
  • added “Military Training” trait (and a couple others, for fun)
  • FIXED: sleeping is not 10x as fast as intended
  • immigration event pulls from a limited set of colonist types (rather than ANY valid)
  • Colonists now given from 1-3 traits. (Lower classes get one only. Military characters always get “military training”.)
  • Added a significant number of new memories for citizens to experience.
  • Some traits now have physical effects
  • Added militia footsoldier & NCO uniforms
  • Soldiers now start with weapons
  • FIXED: afflictions and damage assignment bugs
  • Colonists can form friendships
  • Making friends makes people happy
  • FIXED: freezing in place when approached by fishpeople
  • made eating raw food less desirable
  • Can now form militias via militia button & assign civilians to military squads as militia
  • “sacrificial dagger” is now a valid weapon
  • Possessive pronouns now correctly added to character memory descriptions
  • Axe murder re-added
  • Cultists will now build creepy little shrines
  • Cultists can turn into REDACTED
  • a starving colony will receive one food bailout from the Colonial Ministry
  • FIXED: workcrew job category filter toggles (though more categories need to be added; some jobs are awkwardly categorized eg. foraging/farming)
  • combat tasks now prioritized over hunting /unless/ character is “Big Game Hunter”
  • FIXED: memories not being removed


  • civilian workcrews can be conscripted to transform into a militia squad
  • civilian labourers can be moved to a military squad to become militia soldiers
  • militia soldiers are less good at combat, civilians w/o certain traits become upset when conscripted
  • rally points can be set per military squad
  • Military loadouts (as in, soldiers try to keep a gun handy)


  • Fishpeople now have morale & will run when they’ve had enough
  • Fishpeople morale affected by combat & seeing death
  • Fishpeople now have weapons, including guns
  • Adjusted quality/quantity of fishpeople attacks slightly toward “quality”
  • Fishpeople attack spawns slightly fewer fishpeople (now that they have weapons)
  • FIXED: fishpeople now have gibs
  • FIXED: various issues with attack_melee and fishpeople using melee weapons
  • FIXED: fishpeople weapons not added to player commodity list on spawn
  • fishpeople made more aggressive in tropical biome


  • REDACTED now have “armoured” tag and more hitpoints


  • FIXED herbivore run animations
  • FIXED: people no longer think that killing animals is murder
  • Aurochs is no longed tagged “dodo”
  • Added “Giant Beetle” to tropical biome, can be hunted & butchered
  • Added “Junglefowl” to tropical biome, can be hunted & butchered
  • FIXED: “Junglefowl” no longer shoots out giant gibs
  • FIXED: hunting animals should no longer trigger combat music


  • Alerts can be put on job requirements when job requirements fail, with snooze timers.
  • Click & drag rectangle performance improved
  • Work Crew job filters fixed
  • some sounds added to main menu
  • some sounds added to click & drag order creation
  • FIXED some missing commodity icons
  • Icon displayed on receiving affliction should no longer stack if character receives lots of damage in a short period
  • spoiled crops now generates alert
  • lacking guns for military will generate alert
  • character info window expanded slightly
  • sounds added to some UI buttons
  • sounds added when giving orders via click & drag


  • Gabions can be built and work! Build gabions!
  • adjusted utility of gabion construction (no longer higher than basic military duties)
  • Added fieldstone foundation textures to a bunch of low-tier buildings
  • Turned off “make stone bricks” job (stone blocks will be treated separately from bricks)
  • Short wander added to end of dropping item in stockpile (to stop people from stockpiling themselves)
  • First pass on adding particle effects to modules (this is really cool – ovens make smoke, etc.)
  • added low-end “stone oven” module
  • balance: food cooking time halved
  • FIXED: issues with graveyards
  • improvements to chairs/table placement
  • one work crew will now work together to construct all modules in the building
  • improved minor trim textures on procedural buildings
  • FIXED: workers no longer attempt to make coconut curry directly from coconut palm tree
  • new food commodities added: preserved orange cup fungus, preserved white cup fungus, sugar loaf, molasses, rum, chicha, moonshine, maize, maize stew, coconuts, coconut curry, chillies, etc?

Natural Objects

  • Clay and Sand are now mined with a shovel rather than a pickaxe
  • Doubled berrybush exhaustion chance
  • Stone outcrop spawning increased
  • Made starting colony biome more consistently temperate (to distinguish from tropics)
  • clearables now can require varying amounts of work to clear (grass is easy to clear, shrubs less easy)
  • added foraegable Coconut Palm to tropical biomes
  • added more fungus varieties for tropical biomes
  • improvements to various textures to read better when zoomed out


  • Crops planted/tended by mad cultists will occasionally be Evil
  • Evil plants will be removed by non-mad non-cultists
  • Removing evil crops is upsetting
  • added sfx to “till soil” job
  • People farming will now sow seeds in addition to hoeing the fields
  • Added new agricultural crops: sugarcane, chilli peppers, redid maize
  • Some more crops rescaled (I heard you like big cabbages.)
  • improved maize models
  • various balance adjustments to make farming more forgiving
  • corruption particle effects added to corrupted crops
  • FIXED: harvesting corrupted/spoiled crops no longer causes errors
  • rebalanced priority of farming jobs
  • crops can now be set per-biome, tropical crops only grow in tropical colonies, temperate crops in temperate colonies
  • sounds added to tilling soil, for real!
  • FIXED: nil index errors


  • made curry really good
  • Removed some FSM console spam, made other parts actually say what was printing them (so they are now useful console spammers)
  • This was a real commit message: “- made steak biome look more appetizing”
For Queen & Country,
-- GG