I know its been awhile and I'm sorry for that, but I've been really busy. With 2aw in fact. I looked at trends in the gameing industry and saw that more and more games are moving away from the standard approach.
Thats why I wish to take a new direction with AFF:2AW. A browser based direction. I see so many things move to the browser; E-mail was the first to move, then news and docs, later Interactive things moved, and now I feel its time for games… any game.
Some new things in this alpha:
- finally started some development after months of inactivity due to moving and getting up to speed in my new job
- made the circles around objectives less jagged. I am thinking of dumping circle all together and use some icon instead. It really does not matter that much that spawn and control points have defined size to the player.
- fixed bugs related to crashing and firing of weapons
- optimised AI and collisions some what.
- texture pre loader for the system view
Looking forward to next Alpha?
In 2aw I have a problem with scaling and zooming. I am not playing with the ships at all! I am playing with radar dots, ship ranges and icons and its not visually pleasing! Might as well bring out excel. I fear that the epic battles of the game are hidden behind the icons....
Recently I have switched 2aw simulation to pure integer maths. This makes math computation same on all platforms. It does not mater how compiler orders float point instructions the integer ones always follow same order and produce the same result. It even would not matter which architecture of the CPU its running on x86, x64, PPC, A4 or some other breed.
HUD interface always is a delicate balance between too much information and too little. Some times less is more, for instance 2aw uses range-rings to tell you how far the ships can fire, icons when you zoom out, grid stems to show you the height of the ships relative to the grid, and the grid itself. On one hand this info tells you a lot about the game, an interface that tells you a lot requires you to memorize less.
Katana was concepted to be a fighter-bomber combo. It eventually became a heavy interceptor for the USN. it is larger than a fighter, but smaller then the smallest corvette.
The first rough version of Katana was some what between a Rapier and a Warbird in terms of scale. This was done to establish a reference for future concepts.
One problem you get in any kind of RTS and in 2aw in particular is blobbing. Blobbing is when you take a blob of units and hurl it at your opponent.
The problem I find with blobbing is that it requires no skill but usually works really well. The reason it works well is math.
I always had a problem with my clouds not looking realistic enough. In Second Antarean War I wanted to fill the maps with stuff - empty space maps are not interesting. The stuff that you find in space are rocks, dust clouds, nebulas, stars and space stations.
Long time without some screen shots of what we are working on. Lots of things have went on in the game. I have just started working on shaders - i hope more screen shot worthy stuff will come out soon. Next I have fixed more desync bugs. Avoidance has been programming into the ship's ai. Next big task is getting the weapon fx working right and then work on ability fx. Abilities are important part of the game that are still missing.
A secluded landing platform somewhere in the Undercity. Technically, the Undercity is any section of an imperial metropolis devoted to maintenance, utilities, and other vital, but not necessarily residential or commercial needs.
Starcaft is the most popular RTS of all time. It might not be the best but it is the most popular. Just recently I got into an discussion on how StarCraft implements networking. We where talking about two types of networking which are lock step networking model and server correcting model.
Because 2aw is a tactical game - there is no resource gathering and no building on the map - there needs to be some thing interesting on the map to make it relevant. We came up with putting control points throughout the maps. Control points gives you win points, after you have a 1000 more win points then your opponent you win the battle.
Many RTS games have a info panel in their HUD. This panel is used to display many different types of information, mostly about the in-game units.
fix for overflow into longs on 32 bit machines
now sending debug log back to server again now that i can have 32bit message headers (because of new server)
stop order fixed
parts all players in the zone before closing it
admin zone commands
Purpose of the meta game is to prove an interesting backdrop to the battles that happen in the zones. Features need to for a good meta game: 1 Players can choose to ignore it 2 It is slow paced, like a browser game that takes days to play out. 3 It must utalize players do stuff for you.
Now that have released the alpha version to a few people i can find sync problems much faster. The sync became better now but its still not 100%. I can play games between win32 and lin64 till completion now. Also fixed up lots of desync reporting i can find them diagnose them much better now.
What do you think is the next big thing for 2aw alpha?
In the quest for the best rock shape, I went to the next best thing - marching cubes. Marching-Cubes is an algorithm to convert a 3D math density function into a triangle based 3D model. So basically I come with math function and then wrap it with triangles. Marching cubes allow me to make much more interesting formations.
Second Antarean War (2aw) uses the lockstep model. This is an older model used in many RTS and early FPS games. Basic premise is that each client runs the game in parallel. The clients run the same commands so the game running on all the clients is the same. The server in a way does not run the game at all, all it does is act like a chat server sending messages from and to the clients although it has two other function - marking the end of a "turn" and making sure the game is in sync.
Its hard to fit units into roles. How much should a ship cost? How much damage should it deal? Over which units is it good at now, what should it be good at the end? Are all hard question pretending to proper balanced RTS game.
As you all know we are currently working on improving the game alot! We got Saktoth a game designer on board from the Complete Annihilation fame. We been working alot on improving the actual game part of the game.
Angels Fall First
The Second Antarean War
The Second Antarean War is a multiplayer team-based real time strategic battle simulator.
Angels Fall First : The Second Antarean War
Closed Beta has Started !
The galaxy is changing.
A plan decades in the making, the Antarean systems have declared their independence, reforming the once great Antarean Empire. With their strength of will and technological know-how, the Antarean Star Empire has set out to regain its lost territories, and gain new ones.
Each day that the Antareans' power grows, more and more systems flock to their banner, leaving behind the now fractured alliance known as the United League of Planets.