OpenTTD development picked up pace recently so this year release is finally not just a number. Here is a full changelog and I'll go over some those changes in a moment. But first I want to tell that we're already running 1.9.0 on some servers and more will be switched to it as more players update their game. CityMania client is also ready and have a few features on its own, so check its changelog as well.
As for new stuff in 1.9.0 first thing I want to mention is actually a bit of an issue. There may be a significant performance drop for some players on games with a lot of vehicles. So if your game is lagging definitely try using CityMania client that has this issue fixed and recommend it to your friends ;)
Also there are several significant changes for city-building:
- As towns can now grow up to 70 times faster so GR and next values shown in CityMania client are also about 70 times larger. So what was GR1 is now GR69 and so on. But no core mechanics were affected by that, so end speed of town growth should be the same. Also funding still sets a new house to be built in about 2 days and each CS wastes about 1 day. So all new stuff is only available for games with server controller. We've already took advantage of that in our new CB game modes so growth rate of town should scale much smoother now with amount of deliveries instead of jumping between GR1 and GR2. We also plan to have some fun exploring super-fast growth rates in near future so keep an eye for that ;)
- Town growth rate now updates after each new house, not just every month. So old trick with funding at specific house counts is no longer useful.
- Houses can be built on road turns (that was previously a feature in our town simulator) so our beloved spiral layouts are now even better. And in general there is much more room for creativity with your roads. For example, crazy curly spirals are actually a very viable option now.