Alien Arena is an open sourced game that combines a sci-fi atmosphere with the tournament style deathmatch of Q3A and UT2k4. Major graphical features such as GLSL per-pixel lighting, ragdoll physics, light blooms, real time lights and shadows, textured particles, shaders, and reflective water, create a colorful and immersive deathmatch atmosphere. The game also includes mutators, adjustable effects, bot skill settings, and fully configurable deathmatch, team deathmatch, CTF, All Out Assault, Team Core Assault, Cattle Prod, and Deathball games. The game features original artwork, with a dark, sinister atmosphere combined with an off-the-wall campiness, and trippy, techno type music. There are currently over 60 maps, loaded with weapons(each having an alternate firing mode) and powerups. Alien Arena has fast, smooth gameplay, & players can play online against one another or against the bots. Please post all support issues in the forums for the game.

Report article RSS Feed CRX engine gets extensive performance upgrades and other news.

Alien Arena's CRX Gaming Engine has received a number of major performance upgrades and visual enhancements to boot. Alien Arena can also now be played in both Firefox and IE9.

Posted by Irritant_new on Sep 18th, 2012

Since the release of Alien Arena 7.60, COR has been focusing heavily on improving the performance of the CRX Gaming Engine that powers the game.  Over the years there have been a number of breakthroughs in getting the game to run as smooth as possible on all hardware, but this is probably the biggest jump that we've had in this area. 

Player models are now rendered using VBO, and animated in the GPU, not only allowing for vast increases in mesh rendering, but this will also allow us to release "HD" versions of the models with far more polygons without sacrificing performance.  This change also led to us rendering player shadows using shadowmaps, rather than the Doom III style stencil volumes, also leading to a large increase in framerates.  For example, in our benchmark, we saw increases over 300% over version 7.60's speed.  The disparity increases the more players models are on screen at once.  Without shadows, the framerates in the test went from 130 to 470, with shadows - from 60 to 200.  We also made huge improvements on the bsp rendering speed.  In many cases, map rendering speed increased over 80%.  We expect to make even more gains here before our next release. 

Another thing we improved, was the appearance of shadows.  Using a fast, 4 sample PCF method with dithering, we were able to achieve natural looking, soft shadows, as seen below.

Shadowmapping Soft vegetation shadows.

We are also working on hi-resolution lightmap files, which greatly improve the look and feel of static shadows.  All of these changes can be expected in the next release of the game which will be in the not too distant future. 

Many of these engine changes are to improve Alien Arena, but it might be a good time to mention that COR will be reviving Alteria, completely revamping it using the CRX engine.  For those who don't recall, Alteria was COR's first released title, in 2001.  The game was a hybrid of RTS and FPS, with a gothic/medieval theme.  The game will be using completely new artwork, but we will try to retain the features that made this game innovative and fun.  There is no timetable on the release as of yet. 

In other Alien Arena news, we have secured sponsorship from Kingston, Heat Gaming, and Western Digital.  On top of that, a company called Roozz has ported Alien Arena to an app that runs the game in the Firefox and IE9 browsers.  While there are some kinks to still work out, it offers a new method of installing the game and playing.  Alien Arena was also recently at Dreamhack, and will also be there again later this fall.  There will be some more news soon, as details get ironed out. 

Post comment Comments
DaybreakWolf
DaybreakWolf Sep 19 2012, 7:38am says:

Exciting stuff!

+5 votes     reply to comment
Auth3ntic0
Auth3ntic0 Sep 20 2012, 6:11am says:

Great news. Btw, any chance we'll see you guys on steam greenlight?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Irritant_new
Irritant_new Sep 20 2012, 12:11pm says:

Yup, that is the plan in the near future.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Cope57
Cope57 Sep 21 2012, 7:13pm says:

Nice to see AA has picked up, especially since the forum upgrade.

+1 vote     reply to comment
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Alien Arena
Platforms
Windows, Linux
Developed By
Irritant_new
Engine
Custom Built
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Official Page
Red.planetarena.org
Release Date
Released Aug 21, 2004
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