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The official development blog for Los Santos Muertos.
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Welcome everyone, to the first beta release of Iron Armada. After four years of development, Iron Armada is now finally moving towards a full release. Developing Iron Armada has been a massive journey, that has given us valuable experience, and a lasting appreciation for our supportive community. If you would like to play the latest version of Iron Armada, consider downloading the game on Steam. The beta includes many new features, as well as a few work-in-progress features we are still improving before the final release.
Introducing automaton units, single-player modes, and cooperative modes. For the first time ever, Iron Armada now has full single-player support. This is possible due to an overhaul to our server-side wrapper and the inclusion of new automaton units. Automatons are drones that work similar to normal ships, but include a special artificial intelligence core which can take control of any ship it is attached to.
Introducing pressurization and airlock mechanics. You voted on this mechanic... alright maybe two years ago, but it is now finally done. After a considerable amount of work, we've finally created a highly performant (yet still very simple) system for ship pressurization. Ships now require airlocks to seal decks, and unsealed decks will be exposed to the vacuum of space. However, fear not! Your player is equipped with a suit that features emergency oxygen reserves... so you can still survive for limited amounts of time in unpressured environments. Just make sure you don't stay exposed to the elements for too long.
Introducing advanced logistics, docking mechanics, and expanded resources. After a considerable amount of testing, we've finally settled on a new system for managing resources and building ship tiles. Resources can be mined from planets, salvaged from debris fields, and stored in containers. These containers connect to any manufacturing facilities and allow for the construction of new tiles (or new ships, if you are using a shipyard.) Resources can now also be transferred between ships using the new docking mechanics, which can allow for new advanced gameplay mechanics (like tanker vessels.) Additionally new systems (such as salvage lasers) have been added, so that specialized ships can mine resources without requiring players to leave the safety of their ship.
Introducing voice communications and squad mechanics. A new entirely optional feature is the inclusion of wings and voice communications. Players can now create wings that other players can join, and use voice communication between either other wing members... or with other faction members. We feel that this will help advanced players communicate with other teammates better, and hopefully also organize better strategies (if they choose to.)
Introducing torpedoes and expanded weapon functionality. A major inclusion in the newest build of Iron Armada has been torpedoes and new weapon mechanics. Torpedoes are weapons with an explosive area of effect, but are much slower than conventional weapons... and can be easily shot down. Additionally new mechanics like weapon deviation, flak fire, armor penetration, and explosive damage will make combat much less predictable than before.
Introducing the shipyard and ship blueprint management systems. No longer are you required to build ships from scratch. If you have saved blueprints on your computer, you can now request them from shipyards (provided you have the resources.) Shipyards also allow players to manage their existing blueprints, or generate new ones by scanning any ships that are docked to the shipyard installation.
Introducing a simple in-game tutorial. Lastly, to help with new players... we have created a simple in-game tutorial to help explain the basic mechanics of Iron Armada. This is something we hope will help players learn Iron Armada more quickly, and make multiplayer matches more focused on gameplay... than on training up newbies.
In closing. Thank you so much for your support over the years. Creating Iron Armada has been an incredibly worth while experience, and we've enjoyed every moment we've put into building this game. This beta release is still a little rough, and naturally we're hoping with your feedback we'll be able to get our game over the finish line. However this version of Iron Armada is the most feature complete version of the game we've released to-date. With your help, we'll be able to finally release the version of Iron Armada we all originally envisioned!
Thank you so much, and hopefully I will see you on the battlefield soon.
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Welcome everyone, to the first full release of the Los Santos Muertos modification. After two years of development work, Los Santos Muertos is now finally moving beyond the beta phase. This does not mean that we are ceasing development... however this version of Los Santos Muertos is the most stable, feature complete, and expansive version of the modification that we have released.
Welcome to Los Santos Muertos
Let's talk about the newest version of Los Santos Muertos. In Los Santos Muertos you can play as six distinct factions, or as a renegade survivor unaffiliated with anyone. You can purchase a wide variety of vehicles from faction vendors... or scavenge and repair vehicles from the wasteland. You can trade with vendors... or loot random supply caches discovered throughout the world. Bases allow players a place to save vehicles, save gear, and save their character. The Los Santos Muertos unique extraction system means players can't disconnect to avoid combat or to avoid losing their gear... so every engagement is high risk, but also high reward. Players who enjoy playing Escape from Tarkov, DayZ, or other multiplayer survival games will enjoy the unique blend of competitive and cooperative gameplay offered in Los Santos Muertos. The full list of changes will be listed below.
Los Santos Muertos 1.0 Changes
- Added functionality to Radios. When a Radio is equipped... all friendly faction members who also have a radio equipped can see your location on the map. However... non-friendly players who have a radio equipped can also see your location (and your alignment) but only at short distances. This will be useful for linking up with other faction members, and also identifying what the alignment of other radio-equipped players are. This is essentially a basic IFF system... but is entirely optional, since the radio can be equipped and unequipped at will.
- Added finite ammunition to all vehicles for every ammunition type. Every vehicle now has limits to the number of rockets, bullets, grenades, shells, or other ammunition types that it can carry. Vehicles can be rearmed by purchasing each individual ammunition type at faction vehicle chop-shops. Most faction bases sell a selection of different vehicles, with more advanced vehicles being randomly available. This random advanced vehicle chance resets each real life day.
- Added a tutorial to the base game. We think this will help a lot of new players learn the game much more quickly. It can be easily opened, and explains most of the base mechanics of Los Santos Muertos.
- Expanded high-tier bases with more garages and more storage space. This should make high-tier factions worth the risk of joining. Currently high-tier factions are more strict about rules of engagement... however now these factions offer more facilities to members. This should make both low-tier and high-tier factions worth joining... depending on each individual player's play style.
- Countless bug fixes and balance changes. This includes everything from custom base borders (which fixes faction NPCs spawning way outside base perimeters... YAY NO MORE BANDIT HIGHWAY OF DEATH) to fixing the fact that keys were somehow able to open every single door. Obviously I'm sure there are still bugs that remain... but we feel confident that we have fixed most of the obvious and game-breaking ones. If you find any additional ones... make sure to report them on the forums!
Hopefully you all are enjoying our modification. If you are, consider making a donation to keep development going. You can donate on our DonorBox page here: https://donorbox.org/lossantosmuertos. We are currently working on a standalone project, and if enough support is garnered... we may be able to make our next survival project on a standalone game engine.
However... until next time, I hope I see you in the wasteland. It has been an honor to work on this game, and see so many people enjoy it. I am hoping this is only the beginning... and if you stick with us, I'm hoping we will be able to take the game much further.
Long live Los Santos Muertos
- Los Santos Muertos 1.0 Changes
Welcome to our first official development blog of 2018! The past eight months have been a crash course in improving our infrastructure, expanding our network, and generally improving our understanding of how best to build and maintain a successful development community.
Improved community systems, functions, and infrastructure.
We're excited to have ever improving development infrastructure. Since last year, we've spent considerable time expanding our development, community, and legal platforms. Now we're happy to have automated applications, improved development issue tracking, and expanded legal infrastructure. For those of you who have followed us for years, you'll know how important this is to us... and how much security, peace of mind, and time these improvements will save our development teams.
If you wish to follow the project, try to stay active in our primary development channels.
Introducing Warfare 1944
For our first major development blog of 2018, and after months of work, we're incredibly excited to reveal our Warfare 1944 project! Warfare 1944, being built on Unity, is the perfect project to round out our development résumé.
Our community now has active projects in every major concurrently popular development platform, including Unity (Warfare 1944,) Unreal Engine 4 (Harsh Doorstop,) and Java/LibGDX (Iron Armada.) This gives us the golden opportunity to explore (and connect with) each respective development community we work in, finding new talent, ideas, and opportunities everywhere we go!
Screenshots from our first multiplayer event in Warfare 1944.
Version One, Roadmap
As with all our projects, we like to keep our first prototype playable build humble... but keep our long-term ambitions high. However this means that, as always, our first prototype will be simple... and will serve as a baseline build for us to modify into the full game we all want to play.
Version one is currently planned to include:
- 12 Weapons
Currently we plan on implementing the M1 Garand, Karabiner 98k, M1 Thompson, Maschinenpistole 40, Sturmgewehr 44, Browning Automatic Rifle, M1 Bazooka, Panzerfaust, Luger, M1911, Stielhandgranate, and MK2 hand grenade.
- 2 Maps
Our first two maps will include a traditional "Normandy" beachhead style map, and a "Carrier Assault" style map using our newly developed aircraft carrier. Naval vessels will not be command-able in our first playable build, however we think our "Carrier Assault" map will give players an idea of what naval combat can look like in future builds.
- Advance & Secure
Naturally our community is rooted in Project Reality, and we have no intention of releasing a tactical shooter without our beloved Advance & Secure gamemode. The first version of Warfare 1944 will include a simple version of this gamemode, that is balanced for infantry.
All planned weapons for Warfare 1944, version one.
The current feature list is still only scratching the surface of what we have planned for Warfare 1944. However more importantly, we build all our games to function like a platform... just as much as a game. So our long-term features plan to incorporate systems for user creation, workshop support, and beyond... just as much as we plan to incorporate new content and mechanics.
Assets currently being rigged, animated, and developed into fully functional pawns.
Plans for drive-able vehicles, command-able naval vessels, one hundred player servers, and more are all on our roadmap. We already have a significant amount of experience developing similar systems for our other games in the past (for instance Iron Armada's multi-crew ship system) so while difficult... we expect over time (and with the community's support) all these things (and more) will slowly make their way into our game.
How To Participate
If you are interested in being a part of the internal prototype playtest... keep an eye on our official channels! Also ensure that you file a beta tester or community developer application on our forums!
Otherwise... thank you so much everyone to your ongoing support, especially our monthly supporters who keep our community lights on. I hope many of you are proud of the work that we have done, and how far we've come from a simple server community. If you want to continue following our progress, and our story... make sure you follow these official development blogs by signing up for our direct notifications and you will always stay informed!
Until then, I hope to see you on the battlefield!
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In previous versions of both Project Reality & Project Reality: ArmA III... bases have been static, with fixed positions, and fixed assets. This means starting from the same bases, assaulting the same positions, with the same assets... every time. Boring. We intend to change this... by developing an entirely new asymmetrical, dynamic, and player driven form of base construction... that deeply impacts the entire enduring engagement of each missions, based on each team's early-game decisions.
If you wish to follow the project, try to stay active in our primary development channels.
Introducing Forward Arming & Refueling Points
ArmA is a big game... and big games deserve big features. We've been working to redefine how forward outposts function in ArmA to compensate for the gigantic terrains and asymmetrical environments players encounter. Our solution... the Forward Arming & Refueling Point... your new universal deployment point for Project Reality: ArmA III operations.
A deployed and fully upgraded F.A.R.P.
Forward Arming & Resupply Points allow teams (with combined effort) to fully define the forces available to them, while supporting your entire team on the front-lines. These constructible forward bases not only allow a team to fully support vehicles on the battlefield... but also serve as deployment positions for team assets... including tanks, helicopters, light vehicles, and more.
Varying stages of F.A.R.P. deployment
F.A.R.P. bases are deployed from deployment vehicles (available at other upgraded forward bases.) Each forward outpost has expansion points (or nodes) that can be used to expand each base's functionality over time. These nodes can be upgraded to serve as vehicle respawn points, offer repair/refuel/rearm services, expand base defenses... and more.
A player deploying a F.A.R.P. node into a helicopter deployment pad
These nodes are permanent when deployed, or until F.A.R.P. is destroyed by enemy forces. Each node only serves a singular purpose, and only serve as respawn points for the vehicles it deploys... vehicles are not purchased in Project Reality. If the vehicle dies, it will respawn at the F.A.R.P. node it was deployed from after a fixed respawn delay. With this system, each team can ultimately create proper forward operating bases, that supply and maintain entire motor pools for a team.
A variety of deploy-able nodes available at constructed F.A.R.P.s
These permanent nodes change the entire combat environment for each operation, with each team able to decide what assets THEY need for the given operation. This system should create exponentially greater variety in team engagements, allowing each side to adapt to any given situation... as long as resources and deployment times allow.
Base Construction Mechanics
For the curious, here is an in-depth outline of the current F.A.R.P. deployment process. Please keep in mind that all these details are subject to change, our system is still a work-in-progress, and we are preparing to change our designs based on player feedback from future scheduled playtests.
A simple mock-up of a deployment vehicle deploying a new F.A.R.P.
To deploy a new forward outpost, a deployment vehicle must spawn at an established F.A.R.P. and travel outside of the outpost's construction radius to establish a new starting base. These deployment vehicles are spawned from "Deployment Vehicle" deployment nodes that can be built at established bases. If no deployment vehicles are available at forward bases, a permanent deployment vehicle node will always be available at each respective team's starting base.
A simple dissection of forward outpost nodes and hubs
When deployed... each F.A.R.P. has only five expandable nodes. These nodes cannot be sold or undeployed... and are permanent when upgraded, unless the F.A.R.P. is destroyed by enemy forces. Players will need to build multiple forward bases to have a variety of assets, supplies, and deployment points to engage from.
Stages of forward outpost construction and expansion
As the forward outpost naturally expands, the central structure also automatically expands with it. When newly deployed, a forward outpost only exists as a single deployable cargo outpost. However when the forward outpost successfully constructs three fully developed nodes, the central structure automatically upgrades to a tier II cargo headquarters. Lastly when the forward outpost successfully constructs five fully developed nodes, the central structure fully upgrades to a tier III cargo tower.
Showcase of possible expansion node combinations for different deployed F.A.R.P.s
Nodes are deployed using credits generated over time by deployed forward outposts. Each F.A.R.P. generates its own resources over time, which can be used to deploy nodes, deploy ammunition supplies, repair supplies, infantry equipment, weapons, and more. There is no other way to generate resources for a forward outpost, so defending long-standing forward bases is important to long-term mission strategy. Additionally resources spent on expensive expansions (such as close air support, main battle tanks, and more) may have serious consequences compared to purchasing cheap early-game expansions (such as light vehicles, transport helicopters, and beyond.)
All forward outpost hubs offer supplies and logistical assets depending on their tier
Powered by R3F Logistics
Finally, all forward outpost hubs can supply infantry squads with supplies, ammunition, logistical assets, and even armed emplacements in exchange for generated resources. Each advancing tier of a deployed forward base unlocks more powerful equipment and supplies available to infantry squads. Tier I forward outposts only offer basic fortifications and logistic equipment, such as sandbags, crates, and barbed wire. Tier II forward outposts offer more useful supplies, such as ammunition and medical supplies... greatly decreasing the amount of supplies needed to be flown into the area, and turning a tier II forward outpost into a local resupply hub. Tier III forward outposts offer advanced equipment, such as anti-tank emplacements, thermal sighted turrets, anti-aircraft launchers, anti-tank mines, and mortars.
New Development Repository
Unfortunately we have recently experienced a serious security risk when using Github while working with previous developers of Project Reality: ArmA III. We witnessed a highly damaging abuse of repository administration permissions, that allow contributing developers to delete, transfer, or otherwise deface parts of our repository without authorization.
Unfortunately while using Github, this issue is virtually unavoidable when working with large teams. It is a problem similar to giving twenty of your friends the password to your Facebook account, and waiting to see which friend ultimately presses the "delete account" button... even when nineteen don't. This incident caused serious setbacks for our development progress, and we have since spent considerable time finding and building preventative measures before continuing development on Project Reality: ArmA III.
In response to this, we are proud to finally reveal our new code repository at https://gitlab.bluedrake42.com/
Our new self-hosted development website, powered by Gitlab
With this new platform, we'll have greater control over our intellectual property, and have greater chance at thwarting improper usage of repository permissions, as well as having more direct recovery alternatives in the event of catastrophic events. Currently the server runs Gitlab Community Edition on our own web-server in Utah, is backed up by Amazon Glacier services, and provided support for by Liquid Web management services (all services I recommend very highly, and who help me considerably keeping this community alive.)
We're hoping that now with a new platform to build our products on, as well as new confidence in our web security (although we are always learning and improving <3) now is the best time to continue developing Project Reality: ArmA III!
As always... we always strictly adopt a "when it is done" development mentality. In fact we go beyond that... since this is a community developed modification, we have also strictly adopted a "you can help us get this done faster" mentality. This means if you see an issue, or a feature you want, you can be the person to fix it, create it, or donate it. We only will finish this project as fast as the community comes together to help us.
If you are interested in contributing,make sure you join the project forums and Discord server. Additionally if you are interested in supporting our server, and ongoing development, make sure you VISIT OUR STORE to consider becoming a supporter. Additionally if you want to follow development directly, or possibly apply to become a developer for Project Reality: ArmA III please consider REGISTERING ON OUR NEW DEVELOPMENT REPOSITORY!
Otherwise, thank you so much to everyone for your patience over the past few months, and we're excited to show you some of the incredible things we've been working on! We hope you are just as excited about the future of Project Reality: ArmA III as we are ❤️
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Welcome to Harsh Doorstop's first development update, showcasing what we've accomplished, and what we're next looking to complete. Our goal is to create an enjoyable, modifiable, multiplayer, team-work oriented platform for our community... developed affordably, and available for free. A strong reliance on third-party content makes this possible. Our core development team consists primarily of programmers and gameplay designers, orchestrating assets either purchased, developed in-house, or donated to the project.
If you wish to contribute to the project, try to stay active in our primary development channels.
Pre-Alpha v0.01 Video Showcase
Enjoy the first video showcasing in-game footage of our initial framework. This framework showcases fundamental systems functioning in a multiplayer environment, including multi-passenger networked vehicles, true first person mechanics, large-scale detailed terrain, and elemental match management systems (round reset, factions, scoreboard, and match time.)
Initial Features & Functions
The first versions of Harsh Doorstop focus primarily on building fundamental systems needed to support a full game. Things such as multiplayer support, networked vehicles, true first-person perspectives, and basic infantry weapons. These systems are going to be continuously improved and polished throughout the lifespan of the project, and lay the groundwork for more advanced features in the future.
Our current priorities revolve primarily around polishing vehicle integration (including network smoothing, physics balancing, and player interaction detailing) implementing new player animations (being custom developed by mistwalker) and balancing for realistic gameplay (which will better showcase our framework's potential for tactical gameplay.)
Upcoming Features & Updates
Subsequent versions of Harsh Doorstop will focus primarily on implementing wider variety of content, as well as establishing a pipeline for importing regular third-party content, and building an intuitive user interface for more seamless clientside game management (right now you launch the game and connect to servers through .bat files.)
Importing third-party content. Building a reliable pipeline to regularly import third-party content will have major impacts on content release frequency. Unlike other commercial titles, Harsh Doorstop is openly embracing the idea of utilizing community developed content already available for Unreal Engine 4 on the open market. Using this to our advantage will allow us to implement large quantities of content at a fraction of the cost, in a fraction of the time, keeping our project free to the public, but still content rich.
These assets are not free without a studio license (the above assets are created and licensed by Hum3D studio) so we will need to purchase (and fully convert, animate, and import) each asset for use in Harsh Doorstop. Each asset (depending on complexity) costs anywhere between 300$ and 1000$ after completion. To cover these expenses, we will be running small community fundraisers as we continue development of the game. With consistent funding, more assets can be purchased, imported into the engine, and released in Harsh Doorstop... allowing for constant new content available to the community (as long as our budget allows for it.)
For those still skeptical on the feasibility of importing third-party assets into an existing Unreal Engine 4 game, here is an example of an identical model (purchased from Hum3D) imported into a playable build of Unreal Engine 4 by our team.
We converted this
User Interface Overhaul
The current version of Harsh Doorstop has only a placeholder (or otherwise entirely absent) user interface for player interaction. However we have been building an entirely overhauled menu, interface, and heads-up-display for Harsh Doorstop. The new menu systems should allow all players to easily navigate through dedicated hosted servers, manage video settings, as well as communicate with other players, and manage in-game inventory items.
Here is the prototype radial menu working in-game
Unlike other commercial titles... Harsh Doorstop has strictly adopted a "when it is done" development mentality. In fact we go beyond that... since this is a community developed game, we have also strictly adopted a "you can help us get this done faster" mentality. This means if you see an issue, or a feature you want, you can be the person to fix it, create it, or donate it. We only will finish this project as fast as the community comes together to help us.
However for today, that is everything to update you with! Thanks so much for your support everyone, and we all look forward to seeing you on the Harsh Doorstop battlefield! If you have any questions about the project, be sure to visit the forums and Discord!
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