The first version of the engine was known as W3D ("Westwood 3D") was highly modified version of SurRender 3D engine, developed by Hybrid Graphics Ltd. Westwood used W3D for Emperor: Battle for Dune and updated for Command & Conquer: Renegade.

After Westwood was bought by Electronic Arts the engine was further updated for Command & Conquer: Generals, and renamed to SAGE. The rendering part remains nearly identical to the W3D engine, but most other elements have been redesigned from the ground up.

The SAGE engine allows for dynamic lighting that casts realistic shadows and realistic reflections on most objects. High quality visual effects are now possible with the SAGE engine powering games. One example of a unique effect is the stop-motion camera. Blow up a gas station, for example, and the action will freeze in mid-explosion, and the camera will quickly pan around the environment, revealing pieces of debris and shrapnel suspended in the air, before the action promptly resumes. The SAGE engine also allows games to take place during different times of the day, with realistic lighting and shadow changes, etc.

A new, highly modified version is now used to power Command and Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars.

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Blog RSS Feed Report abuse Latest News: Balance Info and HUD Updates

About Red Alert: A Path Beyond with 3 comments by Chronojam on Sep 28th, 2014

By now, you've hopefully had a chance to take APB 2.1.3.1 out for a spin. It mixes things up a bit, so don't forget to leave us your feedback. We're working on another update for that, with more code fixes and some balance refinements. If you haven't had a chance to play it yet, please do. Pyryle did a great job getting all the tweaks in place.

APB 3.0.0?

Concurrently with the APB 2.X branch, work also continues behind the scenes on the next major version (let's call it APB 3.X), which principally revolves around a lot of engine changes.

There are a lot of changes coming, and it's not all just unit stats. That said, a lot of the balancing has been revisited substantially. A lot of old balancing was done how it was because of engine quirks, unsurprisingly; that's why the Hind chaingun was changed to an autocannon, that's why snipers were removed.

Months and years of changing things around and units being added or removed has left us with a bit of a mess. All the raw numbers are being cleaned up and numerous old armor definitions are being discarded or brought into line to make future adjustments easier on us.

Fixing up the armor is one thing I was not personally looking forward to really dealing with, because it's rather clunky and we have a lot of legacy crap in there -- lots of fractional changes have resulted in some weapons doing (for example) 0.1753x versus a particular armor, with the actual weapon set to do 31.067 damage. That's hard to think about, and hard to talk about, and makes it harder to compare units against each other both for players and for us devs.

Moderator Pushwall has recently been promoted to full staff and is working on balance refinement as  a logical continuation of how Gamma's weapon/armor interaction worked out.  Thankfully, in addition to Pushwall coming on board to help out, Danpaul's also working on some better tools to handle unit balancing beyond "loose text files and spreadsheets and a calculator." Progress!

HUD Updates

Talking more about the big update, we've got some battlefield intelligence updates.
 
Better targeting feedback is being improved. In addition to hitmarks and hitbeeps (audible damage feedback, which you can toggle on and off as you please), your range to target is now displayed when you aim at something.

Since we've added locational damage, we're looking into having the crosshair indicate if you are aimed at a weaker or stronger portion of an enemy vehicle (probably by color). Altogether, you should have a better idea of whether or not your target should be, or actually is, taking damage now.
 
In addition, context-sensitive radio commands are being looked into. The idea is that you will be able to have a couple keys to press to indicate something about your current target. Instead of just pressing a few keystrokes for a vague "Attack my target" and hoping somebody nearby figures out what your target is, the radio command sent will actually specify what your target is. This way you will also be able to specify a particular building to attack, or defend, just by pointing at it.
 
Helpfully, radio commands will also specify what you are. Asking for health? Radio commands will say what unit you are, so your team knows if you're a vehicle that needs a Mechanic or a soldier calling for a Medic.

Somebody says the base needs repairs and you reply "Affirmative?" Now your team will know if you're just some far-off Medium Tank that's agreeing, or are a Technician who can do something about it!

To make things more helpful, your radar icon will blink as a little quote bubble for a few moments, too. There was a hilarious bug that cropped up while testing this that ended up breaking all vehicles such that firing your weapon would cause your whole vehicle to stutter. Also, your soldier would stand outside the tank in a T-pose, and the camera would shift underground. The fun things we run into!

Camera Updates

Earlier, we added options so that the cameras could be shifted around a little bit more than before. Mostly this was useful for making an offset third person camera for soldiers, or a vehicle like TS:Reborn's GDI Titan mech. But, wouldn't it be cool if you could have a slick offset view for the V2 Launcher, too? Or how about a close "gunner's view" for the Ranger? Each of these would make aiming easier, but you could only have one camera profile per vehicle.
 
Obviously that had to change. We're able to have an arbitrary number of cameras per unit now, and will be grabbing some help from the testers to craft some new options. After all, everybody has a different favorite perspective. The keybind is shared with the infantry first/third person view toggle and you can also cycle backwards through the list when also holding "shift."

oWbttjA.gif

Ranger cameras during test (GIF animation)

We'll probably have two or three per vehicle, depending on what makes sense and what works well during testing. A Minelayer doesn't really need too many camera options, but a Longbow or Hind could probably use a couple. If you have any suggestions, we're listening.

Battle Info Screens


Team Info Overlay Replacement

Alright, so we once had static updates bound to the J/K/L keys for team, overall, and server info. These were opaque, took up your entire view, and also locked your controls, and yet they were just snapshots that didn't actually update until you opened them again. Yuck.

Now, we've got some brand new non-modal displays that will show you your team info, or a player overview, or your base status and they update live as every point or credit is earned, or purchase is made, and so on. Plus, they don't lock your controls, so you can keep on driving/shooting/playing.

The team display shows your teammates, their cash, their score, their kills and deaths, what soldier they're using, and what vehicle they are in. If they're simply riding along in the vehicle, they get a [+] indicator prepended to the unit name. If they're on your team and are a spy, their soldier type has [Spy] prepended, so you know!

The players display shows both team's players, their score, kills, and deaths. The same [Spy] notification shows up for spies that belong to your team. The bases display shows both team's structures, AI-controlled Ore Trucks, support facilities such as Service Depots, plus defenses such as Tesla Coils and their current health -- all updated in real time of course.

That's it for this update. Don't forget to follow us on Twitter at @BHPTeam and Facebook as Bluehell Productions. We're trying to keep these updated with important information and news updates for things like when the site and services (TeamSpeak, IRC, gameservers, etc) will experience downtime. Also if you want to tell your friends about the games, these are easy ways to get them aware.

Games
Battle for Dune: War of Assassins

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Updated 6 months ago TBD Multiplayer Tactical Shooter

Battle for Dune: War of Assassins brings you the experience of the 3 great houses, Atreides, Harkonnen and the Ordos first hand in this Dune First Person...

Battle for Middle-earth

Battle for Middle-earth Battle for Middle-earth

Updated 5 months ago Released Dec 4, 2004 Single & Multiplayer Real Time Strategy

Using the Lord Of The Rings movie license, The Battle for Middle-earth is a Real-Time Strategy game based upon both the renown literary works of J.R.R...

Battle for Middle-earth II

Battle for Middle-earth II Battle for Middle-earth II

Updated 6 months ago Released Feb 28, 2006 Single & Multiplayer Real Time Strategy

Wage war in the North and assume command of the most storied civilizations in all of Middle-earth history - the Elven and Dwarven armies - or fight on...

Battle for Middle-earth II: Rise of the Witch King

Battle for Middle-earth II: Rise of the Witch King Battle for Middle-earth II: Rise of the Witch King

Updated 3 weeks ago Released Nov 27, 2006 Single & Multiplayer Real Time Strategy

This is an expansion pack for Battle for Middle Earth II. It adds new armies such as Arnor & Angmar and has many new expanded heroes and units. The game...

C&C Generals: Zero Hour

C&C Generals: Zero Hour C&C Generals: Zero Hour

Updated 4 days ago Released Sep 25, 2003 Single & Multiplayer Real Time Strategy

Prepare to unleash the absolute latest in modern weapons technology against the world's most powerful Generals in Command & Conquer Generals: Zero Hour...

Post comment Comments  (20 - 30 of 33)
synysterkha18
synysterkha18 Jan 7 2009, 12:11pm says:

is SAGA can be downloaded from westwood sources??

0 votes     reply to comment
nukeu
nukeu Aug 11 2009, 3:22am replied:

soo were can i find the downdlode???

+3 votes     reply to comment
morphfox
morphfox May 6 2009, 6:50pm replied:

i hope lol

+2 votes     reply to comment
feillyne
feillyne Aug 1 2009, 6:39am replied:

It can be modded. Greatly! So why do you need to download anything? Suffices to learn how to mod. That's all.

+3 votes     reply to comment
rodrodenas
rodrodenas Oct 8 2008, 11:35am says:

on zero hour, a mod with a 3rd or 4rth faction about post nazi germany,what if hitler escaped?can you imagine a scenario like in yuri's revenge? i can give suggestions on what troops, hardwares to use...ideas of what could have been..my idea is probably better on rotr mod or it could be a new mod. picture a third reich faction using nazi super weapons...

+1 vote     reply to comment
willyTHERAVEGER
willyTHERAVEGER Nov 21 2009, 4:38am replied:

WOW.. SCARY
GOOD IDEA

+1 vote     reply to comment
icebladefox
icebladefox Jun 24 2008, 12:08am says:

well then whats the next best engine to make mods for on kanes wrath?

+2 votes     reply to comment
Handgun_Hero
Handgun_Hero Jun 6 2009, 10:52pm replied:

You can get SDK's for it that work with Generals, Generals Zero Hour, Battle of Middle Earth 1 and Battle of Middle Earth 2, I have one.

+2 votes     reply to comment
iambryan1234
iambryan1234 Jun 28 2008, 7:34am replied:

Pah. Electronic Arts sucks big. But i must admit i liked C&C3 but the storyline is f**ked up. Heaps of gaps in there.

+3 votes     reply to comment
feillyne
feillyne Aug 1 2009, 6:35am replied:

Only a game... it's only a game. Should issue a book with the complete storyline, fill up the gaps somehow.

+2 votes     reply to comment
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Platforms
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Released Jun 14, 2001
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Highest Rated (4 agree) 10/10

one of the best RTS engines out there.

Feb 7 2010, 7:21pm by Maxen1416

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