We are excited to announce the release of the massive v18.104.22.168 update for the award-winning space strategy game Distant Worlds - Legends. The comprehensive update includes a ton of improvements and fixes that boost performance and the overall gameplay experience.
To celebrate this huge update, we are placing all Distant Worlds titles on sale for two weeks, starting today and ending on September 4th, at 33% off! That means that Distant Worlds, which is normally $39.99 for the download price, will now be $26.99 and the two expansions are reduced to $16.99 from their normal download price of $24.99! This is a great opportunity to pick up that extra expansion you’ve been waiting on or jump into the whole series.
The update improves player and AI ship design, including improvements to the design screen itself. Players will now be able to save optimized design templates for any faction and also have the ability to set detailed design policies for their empires. Fleet handling for both player and AI factions has also been improved, as well as ship management for the private sector.
To get the update, click here to go to the download page for Distant Worlds - Legends. The update is comprehensive and will bring all versions of Distant Worlds: Legends to version 22.214.171.124. Please note: Distant Worlds – Legends REQUIRES ownership of the original full Distant Worlds game, including the Return of the Shakturi expansion.
Here is the full changelog:
- Fixed bug where abandoned ships would sometimes have multiple different
reactor types in their designs
- Altered order in which components are dropped off AI military ship designs
when attempting to fit within construction size limits (armor is now higher
priority to keep)
- Improved Design selection for pirate ships so that they do not prematurely use
advanced optimized designs
- The AI will now create new designs to replace optimized designs if tech is
significantly better than best buildable optimized design
- Starting designs for new empires now more accurately reflect starting tech
level (when using advanced tech start)
- Optimized designs now properly have their Date Created reset to the current
date and Build Amount reset to zero when loaded
- Added extra filters to designs screen: Show Latest Buildable Designs, Show
Non-Obsolete Buildable Designs
- Added new AI design settings in Empire Policy screen.
- Can now fine-tune how designs are generated with settings like how
many shields, engines, weapons are used, etc.
- Thus each race now has a particular set of focuses for their ship and
- Also have multiple new tech focus settings (now 6, instead of 2) which
are used to guide which research projects the AI selects
- Reviewed base AI design templates for all ships and bases so that AI designs
are more challenging to play against
- Ensured that new designs properly obsolete old designs of the same type (e.g.
Carrier, Resupply Ship)
- Auto-retrofitting no longer downgrades spaceport sizes when population is
below threshold at a colony (but will still upgrade spaceport sizes when
- Toggling the auto-retrofit settings in the Designs screen now also propagates
these changes to all individual ships/bases of that design. This ensures that
ships are not auto-retrofitted when their role is set to not auto-retrofit.
- Improved AI selection of research projects so that better uses tech focuses
(from Empire Policy) and race-specific techs
- Fixed bug in Designs screen where filtering design types would always
exclude obsolete designs (even when 'Show All Designs' was selected)
- Changed "Save Designs" button in Designs screen to save all selected designs
in the grid below, instead of all designs. Ctrl-click to multi-select designs
- Tweaked AI research project selection to give priority to: special race tech,
Tech Focuses from Empire Policy, optimized design components
- Fixed bug where some ship designs would be repeatedly auto-created even
when no new components researched.
- Adjusted some default AI ship designs (e.g. mining ships): added energy
collectors, more engines.
- Ensured that AI base designs always have armor.
- Increased number of mining components on default AI mining station designs
from one to two.
- Increased number of construction yards on default space port designs by 50%
- AI retrofits now upgrade space port sizes when appropriate (e.g. small to
medium, medium to large).
- Accelerated ROTS storyline progression when have expensive research
- Slightly altered how retrofitting works - private ships are always retrofitted if
new designs are available, whereas retrofitting for state ships is prompted by
your advisors (if Empire Policy setting 'Prompt for Retrofit when new tech
becomes available' is enabled). Retrofitting is no longer controlled by the Ship
Design automation setting.
- Added extra filter to show only state ships, state bases, private ships or private
- Default view is now 'Show non-obsolete designs.' (was 'Show latest designs')
- State-owned designs can now be designated not to automatically retrofit (e.g.
via advisor suggestion). This setting will flow through to any ships or bases
built from the design, but can also be changed individually for each stateowned
ship or base. These ships and bases will only retrofit when manually
ordered to do so by the player. See top of Design Detail screen for this new
setting. Also see Components tab in Ships and Bases screen to update this
setting per ship. Also available in a column on the main Design List screen.
- Added new button 'Manually Upgrade Design' that functions similarly to
'Copy as New', but also obsoletes the existing design to save time.
- Added ability to turn design upgrading on or off for each subrole. Thus you
can automate ship design for some ship types (e.g. private ships), while
manually designing other types (e.g. military ships). See Empire Policy screen
for settings (Research & Design section). Also available in a column on the
main Design List screen.
o Added extra buttons in Design Detail screen to allow adding and removing
multiple components from a design at a time.
- Design auto-upgrading can now be enabled/disabled for all subroles, including
- Can toggle design settings for auto-upgrade and auto-retrofit by clicking
directly in column in design screen.
- Adding and removing components in Design Detail screen no longer scrolls
component toolbox at far left.
- Fixed problem where energy requirements were sometimes not being
calculated correctly for new ship and base designs.
Pre-loaded Optimized Designs
- Added new feature that allows usage of pre-made custom ship and base
designs loaded per race from folders at game startup:
- New designs subfolder under main game folder can contain
subfolders for each race containing saved design files, e.g.
"C:\Matrix Games\Distant Worlds\designs\human\"
- These design folders are also used by any themes/mods (i.e. you
can create a designs subfolder cointaining race subfolders in a
- These designs are loaded for each race at game startup and are
used as optimized designs for each empire
- These optimized designs are used whenever an empire has all the
required tech and is within current construction size limits. These
optimized designs are always preferred over all other designs,
unless made obsolete
- If multiple optimized designs for a single subrole can be built (e.g.
multiple optimized destroyer designs), then the most advanced
design will be preferred
- Optimized designs also guide AI research decisions: preference
will be given to research projects with components required by the
- Because of the above, you should make custom designs that use the racespecific
tech and tech focuses (from Empire Policy) for the race, otherwise
there will be many required research paths, and research will be diluted, e.g.
Boskara designs should utilize Shaktur Firestorm torpedoes (race-specific
tech), and Phasers (Empire Policy tech focus)
Creating New Custom Design Files
- Create custom designs in the Design screen and then save them to a file
- Ideal setup to create new designs is to start a new game at max tech level
(Level 7) so that all components are available, then create custom designs at
various tech levels (different components that become available at different
times in the game)
- Note that saved designs preserve the ship/base picture and any race-specific
tech, so design files probably should not be shared between races - i.e. you
should create different custom designs per race
- Lowered required file permissions for reading custom Empire Policy files -
this should ensure that these customized files are always used when their
Theme is enabled. Also should no longer matter whether customized file
properties are read-only or read-write
- Increased maximum skill count for intelligence agents from 3 to 4.
- Increased chance of randomly generating new intelligence agents.
- Reduced memory consumption when have many characters, especially in
custom themes with unique character images.
- Fixed bug where if your race has a victory condition to keep it's leader alive
then you will not get any replacement leaders after your initial one is lost for
whatever reason (e.g. dismissed)
- Fixed bug where foreign characters (e.g. invading general of another empire)
were being assigned to the winning invading empire when the colony is taken
- Fixed bug where characters on ships that you take over remain in their
- Fleets no longer auto-refuel when ships under construction mistakenly
- Fleet mission "Repair and Refuel" (from Action button) now correctly both
repairs AND refuels all ships.
- Now ensure that automated fleets intercepting enemy forces wait at defend
location until enemy attack force arrives.
- Military ships no longer jump out of a system to pursue escaping enemies
unless manually ordered to do so.
- Ships no longer flee from disabled threats (e.g. threat is non-functional, OR
cannot move and is out of weapons range, OR has no weapons or fighters).
- Manually controlled fleets now automatically refuel as needed if a refuel
location is in the same system.
- AI fleets more careful about invading colonies with adequate attacking troops.
o Changed fleet posture setting: for the AI to alter the posture of a fleet both the
following conditions must be met: Fleet Formation is automated AND the
fleet itself is automated.
- Fixed situation where gain control over an enemy fleet when you gain some of
the fleet's ships when taking over a spaceport where they are retrofitting.
- Queuing construction ships to build new mining stations and other bases using
Action buttons now works better: idle construction ships are given much
higher priority when selecting which construction ship to use.
- Improved stickiness of defense fleets to defend target
Ships and Patrolling
- Rebalanced AI selection of patrol locations for automated military ships - now
avoid too many ships patrolling same location.
- Improved patrol missions - automated ships now patrol for longer at a
- Military ships no longer keep engaging threats after manually ordered to do
something else. (manually-assigned missions now always override
- Troop loading improved - all available troops at a colony will be loaded when
a ship or fleet is ordered to pick up troops.
- Ships and fleets now more persistent when patrolling planets - will patrol
- Automated military ships now better at prioritizing which mining stations to
patrol, more importance given to fuel sources.
- Ensured freighters carry minimum amount of resources for orders (thus less
trips) - especially affects bases in deep space that need constant fuel
- Added further fixes to ensure that freighters do not attempt to dock at
incomplete space ports (i.e. no docking bays), but instead dock at colony of
- Further improved freighter availability by reducing empire willingness to do
freight missions for other empires.
- Freighters no longer attempt to dock at unfinished space ports, but instead at
- Increased reputation hit from bombarding colonies.
- Fixed bug where bombarded colonies that were totally wiped out were
becoming 'lost colonies' that could be acquired.
- Rebalanced bombardment so that colony damage occurs at a slower rate.
- Fixed bug where bombarded planets (zero population) were often becoming
lost colonies that could be reacquired when visited.
- Increased damage to troops from bombardment.
- Fixed Protectorate display in Diplomacy screen. (narrow end was wrong)
- AI empires now give diplomatic gifts only when other empire's evaluation
drops below friendly threshold.
- Fixed AI empires sometimes canceling military refueling rights when have
Mutual Defense Pact.
- AI empires now more likely to use Trade Sanctions against other empires.
- Ensured that invalid advisor suggestions in diplomatic message panel are
removed, e.g. treaties no longer valid, bases already built, etc.
- Fixed bug where other empires were asking you to remove military forces
from system when they were no longer present.
- Fixed bug where Shakturi would sometimes not declare war on the Ancient
Guardians (Return of the Shakturi storyline).
- Fixed bug where AI empires would initiate trade sanctions and then
immediately lift them.
- Fixed bug where AI Empire in Mutual Defense Pact with you sometimes
mistakenly cancels treaty.
- Fixed bug where setting a subjugated empire free sometimes did not remove
visibility of all their ships.
Victory Conditions and Game Balance
- Altered default victory conditions settings: territory, population, economy
now all 33%. Default Time To Apply = 20 years (up from 10).
- Altered default pirate proximity for new games to Average (was Nearby).
- Fixed bug for the Boskara race victory condition "Control the most
Homeworlds" (was not including defeated empires when counting
- Increased costs for some pirate offers: independent colonies now 20000 (up
from 5000), special discoveries now 30000 (up from 10000).
- Ensure player always has nearby supply of Caslon fuel at game start.
- SilverMist space creature is prioritized as bigger threat by the AI.
- Increased font size for project descriptions in Research screen.
- Improved description of Intelligence Agent traits Sober and Addict to explain
that these apply their bonuses only when the character already has the relevant
- Now refresh selected empire information in Diplomacy screen when close
- Now properly revert zoom level when load saved games.
- Fixed missing text for title of message when civil war or revolution in another
- Increased size of popup message panel so that message text not cut off.
- Slightly widened diplomatic relation info section in empire list area of
- Added ‘Move to Top’ button in construction queues on Ships and Bases
- New Start Game options: empire territory colony influence size slider
(defaults to current setting), maximum colonization range slider (this is off by
- Colonization range limits are now off by default in Start New Game screen.
- Fixed rare crash when zooming out to galaxy level
- Fixed rare crash when checking colony resource bonuses
- Fixed rare crash when opening Troops screen
- Fixed crash when editing development level on super-high quality planets
- Fixed crash when starting new game after reverting from Theme with many
- Improved memory management to further minimize out of memory crashes.
- Fixed rare crash when new resource appears at colony.
- Fixed rare crash when evaluating ship commands.
- Fixed crash when using game editor to change development level on highlydeveloped
- Fixed a crash that could occur when exiting the game
- Fixed rare crash when independent colony becomes a new empire
- Fixed rare crash when drawing system links
- Fixed rare crash when AI assigns blockade against colony
- Fixed rare crash when manufacturing components for construction
- Fixed rare crash when editing an empire with very high war weariness
- Fixed rare crash when zooming into systems.
- Fixed rare crash in diplomacy.
- Fixed crash when take over colony with un-owned troops.
- Fixed crash when building ships.
- Fixed crash when ships exit hyperspace.
- Fixed a number of rare crashes related to ships.
- Fixed crash when AI disbands excess troops.
- Fixed crash when an empire's last colony is wiped out through bombardment.
- Fixed crash when assigning ship mission.
- Fixed rare crash when empire is destroyed.
- Fixed occasional crash when independent space port scrapped ships.
- Fixed occasional crash when assigning pirate ship missions.
- Fixed crash when reviewing system threats.
- Fixed rare crash when invade colonies.
- Fixed rare crash when disbanding troops.
- Fixed other rare crashes
- Fixed bug where game would sometimes lockup.
- Fixed rare situation where ships would sometimes not undock properly,
preventing hyperjump from working.
- Fixed bug where moving to another ship that then hyperjumps would drag the
other ship through hyperspace.
- Fixed bug where planets would sometimes become invisible.
- Fixed bug where could build wonder twice at colony by accepting advisor
- Fixed bug where could not build bases that are over construction size limit at
- Fixed issue where some ruins could not be investigated.
- Fixed bug where destroyed planets were sometimes not properly removed
- Fixed rare bug where a unique asteroid field comprised of barren rock planets
- HyperStop Gravity Well Projectors now also stop pirates from jumping close
- Fixed situation where too many mining ships of the same empire were
clustering around a single planet/moon/asteroid
- Fixed bug where you could sometimes still colonize planets that were outside
- Fixed display bug when describing happiness bonus from ruins in Colonies
- Can now build both mining stations and resort bases at same location if
scenery at location.
- Fixed bug where Ardilus creatures were sometimes not visible.
- Space ports built from advisor suggestions are now located over colony
instead of further away.
- Fixed empire territory bug when invade enemy colony (was not updating
territory display properly)
- Fixed bug where mining ships were not completing a mining mission when
the planet that they were mining was colonized (they were stuck)
- Fixed bug where sometimes the wrong tech focuses were saved in Empire
- Fixed bug where alien race descriptions were missing special tech descriptions
when starting second game in a session
- Fixed problem where retrofitting a ship or base with damaged components
would cause components to be lost.
- Gas clouds with gas mining stations now properly excluded from potential
mining locations in Empire Navigation Tool and Expansion Planner screen
(note that gas clouds allow more than one empire to build gas mining stations
at them - but only one per empire).
- Improved overall game performance
- Improved mining ship target selection - now mines at planets/moons/asteroids
that are nearer to your empire
- Construction and mining ships now properly flee from nearby space creatures
- Fixed mixed up setting for Empire Policy setting "Prompt for Retrofit when
new tech becomes available" - now properly allows auto-retrofitting
regardless of this setting.
- Allow placement of resort bases in the game editor at non-planet locations.