Vector Thrust

Vector Thrust is a fast-paced cel shading action-arcade flight simulator.
Offering an extensive variety of game modes to chose from, with quick, action-oriented instant play, or the opportunity to experience an immersive story-based campaign, Vector Thrust offers something for everybody, appealing to both players wanting to get straight into the sky and those who want to experience something deeper.

While the game is still in an Alpha Build, the player has full power over the game in order to tweak, edit or mod every aspect of the game. Adding custom skins, changing a parameter of a unit or creating full-blown battle scenarios is easy and open to anyone. With over 16 different fanmade mods and addons already avaliable for download, ranging from paint schemes to HUD revamps and even completely new aircraft, Vector Thrust offers near-unlimited expandability and adaptability.

Above all, Vector Thrust delivers a tactical, intelligent AI, where every unit works to complete its mission in a dynamic ever-changing battlefield that is never played the same way twice.

More info, features and content will be added weekly, including new maps, aircraft and others.
Features:

  • Lots of modes
  • Campaigns
  • Challenges
  • Advanced Tactical AI
  • Ace Squadrons
  • Custom content
  • Mods Supported

Minimum:
Windows XP SP3, Windows Vista SP2, Windows 7
CPU with 1Ghz
GPU: 128 MB DirectX®–compliant, Shader 2.0–enabled video card
Ram 500Mb
Hard-disk space 500mb
DirectX Version: DirectX 9.0c

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Blog RSS Feed Report abuse Latest News: Report 047: Grunts and Aces

20 comments by timeSymmetry on Apr 10th, 2014

This time the update is to announce something different.
As it was hinted before, it is about the AI.

It has the expected improvements in making the AI more effective in killing the player; this update is also introduces something in a completely different direction.

But before that, let me confirm, the AI is now smarter with a more fine tuned logic that also fixes one noticeable bug the would result in the AI not avoid crashing to the ground, now if that happens is by their own mistake and not due to bug in the logic.

Also the AI players will now dynamically chose between the special and main weapon by considering the battle condition, ammo and each weapon characteristics, but like everything else, the personality may affect the selection, so it is not really a matter of always selecting the most effective weapon.


And that’s it, now we have an even more lethal AI. Awesome!
But in other hand, this also becomes a problem.

Veteran players or anyone that is skilled enough will probably be able to deal with them on even terms. But what about the players that jump into the game for the first time?
They are almost certainly jumping into a world of pain.

Something I also noticed with the existing AI, it actually does not work well in highly scripted missions, they are too unpredictable and engage the player in their own ways, it is great to create an emergent gameplay, but not so much if you want to create a sequence of well coordinated events.
This is also an issue, as the VT wants the players to create their own campaign, this could limit some scenarios.

For both of these reasons it was made new and alternative type of AI, that from here on it will be referred as the “Grunt type”, and the AI type that was here from the start it will be referred from now on as the “Ace type”. And this new grunt type was made to be used mostly on campaigns and normal missions.

But how different is the Grunt from the Ace type?
Right from the start, this new AI is the complete opposite of the Ace; it is bland, predictable and easy to shot down.
To have a better idea, the grunt type is the regular AI you will probably find in other similar flight games.
They rely on numbers and while they can still harm the player, their lack of skill is used to make the player feel like a true ace always in control of the battlefield.


In short the Grunts are best used for easy levels, large numbers, or heavy scripted levels.
Aces are best for bosses, or dynamic battlefields.

But that is not everything that is added in this regard.
To help the level design it was added two small tricks that can be applied to any unit and both AI types.

One that was inspired by the older Ace Combat, if you played them you probably may have noticed that some aircrafts on the global map simply do not move unless you get too close them. Although this not very accurate, this is very helpful in the level design, otherwise these enemies would simple move away from the area they were supposed to be protecting.
But to better fit VT this trick was been slightly changed from “The AI will only act if they are in the player’s view range.” to “The AI will only act if they are in the enemies’ view range.”
So if you have an AI partner the meets these agents they will fight properly without the need of the player intervention.


Another trick, is the hidden state, this makes any unit even if they are non stealth, hidden from the global map until they have been spotted once. This is great for ambushes, surprise attacks or even eater eggs.

Both these tricks are very simple, but open a lot of possibilities of making missions, something that should be explored not only in future missions, but also to be implemented in all that have been done before.

Something also to be revised/updated, the weapons loadouts.

The new idea is to make conceptual special weapons more likely to be found on conceptual aircrafts, prototype weapons and prototype aircrafts and fictional weapons on fictional aircrafts.
This is not golden rule, is more a guide line for arranging the loadouts for the aircrafts.

Let’s use this as an example, the UA-10D.


The ucav version of the A-10, a conceptual design evolved from the A-10C.


And it will be equipped with the AGM-124 Wasp
This weapon is like a real micro missile pod, it was made to engage multiple tanks at the same time.


And an example of a fictional weapon, it is not noticeable from this screen, but it is armed with a Gatling gun that starts to fire when is close to the target.
Despise the novelty it may have, it is only useful against large targets.

And finally something you will probably hear more from me in the future.
We need more ships!

The problem is not much about quantity, is more about their role in the missions.
Due to all the weapons systems some ships contain, each are like a small boss.
The problem lies in that most modern ships have very advanced Anti-air systems that can track aircrafts beyond visual range, this created a situation where one side we have completely inoffensive ships and the other side highly lethal ships.

So the real problem is that there is very little in between, as a result what is really need is more ships that serve as point defense with different characteristics to help bridge between the both extremes of difficulty.

To ease the content creation the new ships you will see added in the future will likely be either conceptual/speculative or fictional designs.

Here is a preview of you can expect to see in the future:


The STAC is a conceptual Trimaran carrier design; part of the “Avpro project”.

Also, all the ship units will be revised as well in other to have their own sub subsystems be independently targetable and destroyable like a regular boss.
And that’s everything for now.

Stay tuned, more reports will follow.

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Su-33 Skin pack

Su-33 Skin pack

Apr 15, 2014 Vehicle Skin 4 comments

A small skinpack I came up with while trying to regain my inspiration to finish other packs. Contains 5 Su-33 and 1 Su-27UB skin.

Knights of the Round Table - Broken Mirror

Knights of the Round Table - Broken Mirror

Jan 29, 2014 Vehicle Skin 4 comments

A preview version of my Knights of the Round Table: Broken Mirror skinpack.

AFDS skins 2nd edition - first pre-release

AFDS skins 2nd edition - first pre-release

Jan 17, 2014 Vehicle Skin 8 comments

Just a short little pack for those who wanna fly these planes. This is NOT final release, it's just the first pre-release of these skins. Holst's skulls...

Forest Fly Over

Forest Fly Over

Sep 28, 2013 Singleplayer Map 4 comments

The harshness of the desert, relieved by a green forest.

ADFX-02 "Morgan"

ADFX-02 "Morgan"

Aug 18, 2013 Vehicle Model 5 comments

Start over from Zero. Fly the aircraft that would've started the entire world over from scratch.

Random collection skin pack

Random collection skin pack

Jul 10, 2013 Skin Pack 0 comments

A few random skins, that don't belong to a themed pack.

Post comment Comments  (1100 - 1110 of 1,487)
DEathgod65
DEathgod65 Aug 25 2012, 8:54am says:

Are Carrier-based aircraft coming anytime soon in Vector Thrust? I don't see much navy stuff being added since the DDG-51 and Karel Doorman Frigate

+3 votes     reply to comment
timeSymmetry
timeSymmetry Aug 25 2012, 1:37pm replied: Online

Since you mentioned, the next MiG-29 to be included in the game update will be the MiG-29K (it is really the only carrier cable aircraft at the moment)

But yes, you are right, it wasn’t added any more sea unit after those two.

We already have a destroyer and a frigate, it would be best if the next units were from other types, like a Fast attack craft or others.

Throw a suggestion if you have some unit in mind.

+3 votes     reply to comment
bornloser
bornloser Aug 25 2012, 6:19pm replied:

Personally I think what we need new buildings even more than new units. With units after the community reaches critical mass players are going to start filling the gaps themselves, but few of the people who play games like this are going to be interested in modeling structures (or trees) especially if they are just part of the scenery. Well, that, and it's hard to find blueprints for factories and military installations.

+2 votes     reply to comment
timeSymmetry
timeSymmetry Aug 25 2012, 7:06pm replied: Online

Yes, currently the game still offers a weak variety in ground buildings.

After the addition of the skirmish is finished, the next step will the development of the first campaign with story, but it will take some time and will have lots of other updates in between.

But with that, it will be added more maps and buildings, although the real priority will be to finish adding buildings to the existing maps.

But I agree with you completely, it is not easy at all to find helpful information about factories and military installations.

Just so you know, for the existing units, I think 2/3 of the building development time was spent only on researching.

+2 votes     reply to comment
DEathgod65
DEathgod65 Aug 26 2012, 3:23am replied:

I think the only real ground buildings you would really need to model with detail would be Airfields, since they would probably be the only structure players would see up close.

As for the naval units, the the Russian Kirov and American Ticonderoga-Class would be a pretty formidable addition to the game, heck seeing how much firepower they hold, they could probably be 'Ace' units in the early stages of the campaign.

For Naval Aircraft, IMO, the F/A-18 Family would be a great addition, and with the EA-18G Growler variant, ECM measures and jamming could be added, if not already in the game.

+3 votes     reply to comment
bornloser
bornloser Aug 27 2012, 1:25am replied:

Actually, as long as we're talking naval stuff, I forgot to suggest LCACs

+2 votes     reply to comment
dhannemon13
dhannemon13 Aug 27 2012, 3:28am replied:

And helicopters :D
Like Mi-28N or AH-64D..
And please, transport planes like C-130 or An-12, for airborne invasion mission, and supporting the ground forces.. :)

+1 vote     reply to comment
timeSymmetry
timeSymmetry Aug 29 2012, 7:45pm replied: Online

It will be fun to see a LCAD.
Helis will be available soon, and most likely be playable right from the start.
The first unit will be the AH-64.

+2 votes     reply to comment
timeSymmetry
timeSymmetry Aug 22 2012, 7:29pm replied: Online

No, at the moment there isn’t any aircraft with the thrust nozzle animated, but they probably will be in the future.

But the "turkey feathers", with some exceptions, they are not modeled and instead they are painted in the texture.

+2 votes     reply to comment
bornloser
bornloser Aug 22 2012, 9:00pm replied:

Yeah, thrust nozzle is what I meant.

+2 votes     reply to comment
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Vector Thrust
Platform
Windows
Developer & Publisher
timesymmetry
Engine
Ogre Engine
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Official Page
Time-symmetry.com
Release Date
Released Jun 26, 2012
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9.3

166 votes submitted.

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Highest Rated (12 agree) 10/10

I am sorry I couldn't give it a 10/10 out of euphoria; but this is still an alpha; I am glad that such a ace combat pandora box has been opened; i was very pleased, really; and the only reason i cannot be more precise is the state of advanced sleep deprivation my brain is suffering from. The musics seem sometimes to be out of place and we can barely see what the entire game will be; but...... This is a godlike game. Really. I have never been so hooked on a game this "young" since years. Not even…

Jun 26 2012, 8:54pm by Wheaton_Adams

Style
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Combat Sim
Theme
War
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Single Player
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Indie
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