Re: September 22nd

#35
Right, so we've been posting pictures all over the place. Time to hit you with some knowledge.

So, obviously, we missed our hundred day deadline. It's way off back there somewhere. ButI think that the ladt six or so months have been probably the most intense sustained burst of real work on the mod in literally years, and it is absolutely paying dividends, both in the assets which we've been showing off and in less visible things (missions, background fluff, non-model assets like head anis, etc. etc.). So I'm going to brng you up to date with where we're at in some detail, and where we want to end up.

First of all, assets, specifically models. With VA's completion of Blackwood, we now have functional ingame models for every single ship in Act 1. 2 of these models are using incomplete textures (not placeholder - they're both partway there). One of these, unfortunately, is a particularly large job, and may take a few weeks or more to finish, however it will not in any way impede testing or FREDding or bugfixing or anything that we still need to do. It can literally be the very last thing we put into the archive before release.

Next, missions. Every act 1 player mission is now in a state which I'd be happy to call alpha-ready, with one exception. That exception applies to an older mission which was actually complete, but, due to its unique nature, became unplayable after we upgraded to Fury AI. We considered scrapping the mission, but we've received some help from m|m, who's offered to script some interesting new gameplay mechanics in for us, which should go some way to fixing the balance issues. Unfortunately, until I get the script, I can't rebalance the mission, so we're in a bit of a holding pattern on that one.

You may also have noted I said "Player" missions - we have three ingame cutscene missions in Act 1, of which 1 is finished, one is half finished, and one is yet to be started. Fortunately, however, the completed one is probably the most complex, and none of them are really likely to be particularly time consuming - once you eliminate the pesky player's influence, bugs tend to be less common.

Other assets are actually pretty good, I think. Our backgrounds have been assembled for awhile, and the skybox we're using for EP is the only one we need for Act 1. New weapon effects/sounds (few that they are) have also been done for awhile, although VA is in the process of sprucing up a few key effects for one of our key sequences. Otherwise, most of our little bits and bobs (HUD guages, head anis, weapon tech models etc. etc.) have been built mostly during fits of procrastination, so we're fairly good on that front, although filling in the gaps will be one of the tasks I'll be undertaking during beta testing.

What we really lack are music tracks and CB anims, though we don't need all that many of either. And, luckily, neither of them are critical from a beta testing PoV. So, the net result of all that? I can assemble a fc2 and, for the first time ever, we'll have something resembling a campaign. In short, Act 1 is going to Alpha. :D

Of course, I call it alpha, but at the stage of completeness we're at, it's closer to beta, really. It's just a useful way to distinguish the "rough edges" release that'll be tested internally over the coming days and weeks in order to produce the slightly more polished, more refined version that'll go out to external beta testers (once I have the script I need and have finished the last of the ingame cutscenes, of course), to be viciously ripped apart in search of bugs and inconsistencies.

This is a really big step for us, and while it's come later than I would have liked, I'm also stoked to have finally gotten here.

Keep an eye on this thread over the next few weeks, things are really going to start speeding up now. :D
TI - Coming in 2011 - Promise!
:flag9:
"Everyone has to wear clothes, and if you don't, you get arrested!" - Mr. T

Re: September 22nd

#40
The recent silence has been my bad. I went from a lot of free time to very little - the result of the field season starting and some personal bullshit. But now I'm back! From Outer Space! I just walked in and found you here with that sad look upon your face! I should have changed that...

Erm.. yes.

Anyway, I'm back in full on FS mode, expect an update tomorrow or Friday.
TI - Coming in 2011 - Promise!
:flag9:
"Everyone has to wear clothes, and if you don't, you get arrested!" - Mr. T

Re: September 22nd

#41
So even my updates are massively late... :oops:

So, you want an update now, I'm sure, if you're reading this. Let me apologize again for taking as long as we have. Unfortunately, our efforts to kick this thing in the arse before the beginning of field season (and the corresponding death of my free time) have, as it should be obvious by now, failed. That doesn't mean we've stopped working on Act One though, far from it. I've been FREDding pretty intensively these last few days and weeks, and the score sheet is this:

- I have one mission that is waiting on some SCP changes (all have been coded, I just need a build that integrates all of them - should be forthcoming in the next week or so) and will need rebalancing and some minor rebuilding.
- One mission is complete as far as it can go without a finalized asset from VA.
- One in mission cutscene needs some tweaking of the camera movements and such, which I should complete tonight.

That's it. Literally the only things standing in the way of the beta will be one asset, one SCP build and a few hours (tops) of FREDding. Moreover, since this delay has been so long, I've had time to replay and replay missions, and do a lot of my own bugfixing, which means that the beta testing should be a minimally disruptive process (at least, in terms of bugs reported - we're still going to have this thing tested intensively). And then, the only thing standing between Beta and release is one texture job, which is almost finished anyway.

I know it's frustrating for those of you watching, and believe me, it's even more frustrating for those of us on this side, but we are still working at it, and we are making major progress, even if it doesn't always seem that way.
TI - Coming in 2011 - Promise!
:flag9:
"Everyone has to wear clothes, and if you don't, you get arrested!" - Mr. T

Re: September 22nd

#42
Hi guys,

I was going to keep this one semi-quiet until I got the texture finished on it (I say semi quiet since I showed a couple of people on IRC) but I know we're taking ages, so I fiugured I'd throw it up as evidence of continued progress. :)

1293

This is the Atlantis - a redesign of an old idea for a megafreighter which has been part of the TI story for years and years now. The old design, though, was a bit ambiguous as to what it was, and it was way to well armed - it kept killing the pirates it was supposed to be cowering from :) This, by the way, is the "almost finished" texture job I mentioned in the previous post, and that's true. It's probably 80% done, but I want to get those last few polies painted before I post up a picture of the diffuse mapped version. Keep an eye out over the next week or so (well, if I don't get it up tomorrow, it'll be at least a week before I get home... so either tomorrow or next wednesday/thursdayish.
TI - Coming in 2011 - Promise!
:flag9:
"Everyone has to wear clothes, and if you don't, you get arrested!" - Mr. T
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