Vector Thrust

Vector Thrust is a fast-paced cel shading action-arcade flight simulator.
With an extensive variety of game modes like the unpredictable and vicious Quick Action, a customisable Skirmish Mode, and multiple immersive story-based campaigns, Vector Thrust aims to please both players wanting to get straight into the sky or those who love a flexible, diverse and customisable game experience.

Vector Thrust gives the player full power over the game to alter any aspect of the game they choose, ranging from simple tweaks to full-blown modifications. Adding user-made skins, changing unit performance and parameters or even complete battle scenarios is easy and open to anyone. With fully fleshed out Map, Mission and Campaign editors, Vector Thrust boasts unlimited expandability and adaptability.

With advanced tactical AI that actively analyses and responds to a dynamic battlefield, as well as over 200 fully playable aircraft and even more naval and ground units that all work to complete their objectives in different ways, Vector Thrust offers missions that are never played the same way twice.

With regular updates containing new game-modes, aircraft, and other important features brought to you by a friendly, active and involved team from around the world, Vector Thrust offers an all-new aerial combat experience in a unique artstyle that will be sure to please both arcade flight sim veterans and new pilots.

Features:

  • Engage at your discretion with a variety of game modes
  • Take part in an scarred and battle-weary world with a series of campaigns
  • Unlock over 200 aircraft through an simple, yet competitive challenge mode
  • Pit yourself against advanced tactical AI that responds to the world around it
  • Clash against titanic aerial fortresses and superweapons
  • Duel with a myriad of Ace squadrons, each with their own unique combat strategies
  • Modify your game with easy, simple modding tools and share your creations with others

Minimum:
Windows XP SP3, Windows Vista SP2, Windows 7
CPU with 1Ghz
GPU: 128 MB DirectX®–compliant, Shader 2.0–enabled video card
Ram 1GB
Hard-disk space 3GB
DirectX Version: DirectX 9.0c

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Blog RSS Feed Report abuse Latest News: Report 056: Beta

19 comments by timeSymmetry on Feb 26th, 2015

The beta is here!

In a way this event is very dear to me, is great to see it giving the final steps towards the release.
This project holds a special place in my heart, I'm not sure If I ever talked about the history behind this development, but if not I'll do it someday.

Also, new report! It has been a while, I feel I'm already not used to this, but I definitely should write more, there are always interesting things to tell that are not just showcasing what it was done.
But about this report, first I'll plan talk about that the beta has, then what didn't make it and lastly I'll talk about what will come next.

But before everything, I just noticed that there was an incubator patch that wasn't be posted the change list, it is still important to tell because these changes are also in the latest update.

  • ADDED: first quick action play is pre made
  • ADDED a 30% chance of playing in quick action mode with an aircraft that hasn't been unlocked yet
  • ADDED option to see and buy pass for aircraft that don’t have challenge
  • ADDED sob objects layers
  • ADDED the condition to not show “pull up” when fly bellow to low ceilings, (useful for tunnels)
  • FIXED the fire rate in the sub weapons
  • FIXED Lock sound keeps played when player pauses the game
  • FIXED displaying “map editor” when returning from a mission test
  • FIXED units’ sound being played when returning from a mission test
  • FIXED the crash when pressing esc during the splash logos
  • FIXED Crash on deleting a condition in mission editor
  • FIXED lose message being misaligned from the center of the screen
  • FIXED In-flight and action cutscenes were deactivated in past builds
  • FIXED missing skeleton file on Coldpigeon
  • FIXED SNB-02A misaligned with collision model
  • FIXED missing engine Animation for the F-22V
  • FIXED S-210B having SP weapons when is not intended
  • FIXED model skinning issues in X-16S
  • FIXED MiG-29IB being called UB in game
  • ADDED: F-16XL-1
  • ADDED: F-16YZX
  • ADDED ComplexM1
  • ADDED: AGM-124A
  • ADDED: N-156F (late) Challenge
  • ADDED: Have Blue 1001 Challenge

Now about the changes addition of the beta, first the something really important that may easily go unnoticed:

Pilots! Finally!
It is a simple a rough model, but I feel is enough for the purpose it is intended.
Not all aircraft have them but this will be added will the following updates.

More aircraft:
Although it may come as a surprise to some as these families are not the first that come to mind.

Still they are needed to make a more gradual evolution towards the J-31.

More bombers:

At this point I feel that the interdictors interceptors and penetration role is more than fulfilled for bombers. The next units to be added going to be the much needed cargo transporters and AWACS.
This goes to the idea someday the bombers may be playable, so this is gradually building the variety of available

But before that the B-52 model needs to be updated.

Glow trail:

I find the visual effect interesting but I feel it is hard to get used to certain situations.
But because this is mostly about personal taste there will be an option to make it like it was before
Although this can create some interesting stuff especially in a more Sci-fi environment.

the other change comes from a discussion on several threads.
This made me think it was time to cleanup some mechanics, in this case namely the challenge mode and other interconnecting systems.

This mode has evolved a lot since it was first debated, some things mutated into completely different shape that originally intended to be initially.
While this happened gradually some of the old mechanics remained linked to the user interface.

Most of them were the family points and levels for each game mode. These where initial meant to be used as requirements to unlock some aircraft. But soon after implementation the whole idea didn't looked to be practical as it seemed on paper.

Also considering the game tries to be as customizable as possible, even in as small things how the lock behavior works, it would be great if it was less restrictive as possible.

So the family points were turned in into an alternative way to unlock new aircraft.
Whoever, the past unused system remained visible and admittedly, made this system less noticeable.

Still, considering that the VT can be easily edited/"cheated" this means points system must be as a nice and fair alternative to completing just one challenge, this also means the player shouldn't have to grind that much to unlock the aircraft they want. Especially because I'm sure no one will willingly spend hours grinding to earn some points when they can simple open a note pad and change a simple value.

And lastly, due to the nature of VT, this means grinding can't be used as way to increase the game's length

Still I hope this new arrangement makes everything more intuitive and a more pleasant experience to everyone, and in these three options available use the way you like the most.

Now that we talked about what this beta update adds, let's talk about what didn't made it

New death and game effects,
This is something that was very unfortunate to not be included. But at the same time it is something very easy to include in the next update.

Currently that are several big units, fully armed and everything, but their death animation, by this I mean the explosion, is far from impressive or even interesting. This new feature was only tested in some units and not fully applied to any model, but now it is possible to make the model start to explode and burn as it gets more damage.

Weather effects defined by mission.
Although not very requested I'm sure everyone is interested to be added as soon as possible, the only issue why this wasn't applied in any mission/challenge is because it was implemented vary late for release and then I've found some issues. I fear that it could have greater problems so it wasn't applied to any new challenge released

3d mesh used as explosions.
This is another important visual feature, there are some explosions that need to be more artistic and detailed, this means the traditional way of doing effects are not enough. With this is now possible to make effects out of 3d animated models.

[this is an effect that was used for testing, for this purpose it must be as noticeable as possible]

I think you all already haven and idea in what effects this will be useful.
Actually I add to upload again the build because I've noticed in time there was a 3d explosion active.
For anyone interested in this you can find how to activate it in the "SimpleExpl_water.ini" onf the effect folder.
Later this will be implemented to reactor as well, I've plan to after this is enabled update some of the missile exhausts and other effects.

And the last thing that wasn't completed, very sadly for me was the revamped campaign.
I've been talking about the revamped campaigns for a while. Some steps can actually be seen in this update but most of it had to be pulled off. But just to be clear, when I mean revamped, I mean something almost new.

The development of this beta was going well, however I made two "mistakes", first to address what has been said before in the forums I wanted to make new maps, and more unique to those that are available now. However in this process required time to study new ways and gave less time for the actual missions.

As usual, some code issues to join the party, nothing serious, but they always a time waster.
But the real mistake I see here is that I've saved the biggest and most elaborate missions for last.

As the paned release date draw near I has forced to leave something out to the beta, but still believing that it could be released I continued to work on it, however the fatal blow came when I realized I wouldn't be able to finish the first map on time.
I don't want to say much about it, but this map and the first missions is extremely important for the campaign.

Immediately after I've considered every solution that came to mind, I was going to add something to make the campaign skip the first mission. But then, almost at the last moment I felt this was not the best way to deliver the campaign so I removed most of it and fall back the previous version instead.

Then what next?
Well at this point, the process should be to close each individual section of the game.

What happened with the campaign was a good lesson, fortunately was on beta not on release, but to prevent similar issue, the first area to be 100% should be the campaign. As soon the content that was initially planned beta is complete, the campaign will be released to the public, but after that that rest will be added only in the final EA Update.

The rest of the challenges will be done next; making the campaign first will also help in providing new maps and content to play around in the challenges.

But in the immediate future, what to expect the next updates?
First, there are some challenges and units specs that need to be fixed.
Then add the weapons they were left behind and then add the pilot model to all aircraft.

I feel that these last days I've been a bit slow due to the stretch that it was to release the beta, but I hope be able to release the next update on Sunday/Monday like usual.

Stay tuned, more reports will follow.

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R-505U (AI)

R-505U (AI)

Mar 26, 2015 Vehicle Model 6 comments

Had a bit more of free time and did the R-505U. It's a bit fatter than the AC3 model, which was a consequence of using some less accurate blueprints...

XA-20 Razorback Updated

XA-20 Razorback Updated

Mar 25, 2015 Vehicle Model 4 comments

Updated version of XA-20 Razorback from my first HAWX conversion pack. Now with animations (including spinning guns!), specmap and cockpit model + texture...

R-103 Delphinus III and R-99A Forneus fix

R-103 Delphinus III and R-99A Forneus fix

Mar 22, 2015 Vehicle Model 2 comments

This fixes the low top speed of these two aircraft, plus gives some extra maneuverability to the R-103.

Rebel Raiders B-66 Black Widow

Rebel Raiders B-66 Black Widow

Mar 22, 2015 Vehicle Model 4 comments

Playable bomber from Rebel Raiders Operation Nighthawk. Extract to VectorThrust folder.

Invasion

Invasion

Mar 21, 2015 Singleplayer Map 10 comments

Alternative history... the day after the Allenfort destruction. As Black1, support Erusean operation in attempt to invade the ISAF HQ in North Point.

F/A-12 Lonely Eagle Updated

F/A-12 Lonely Eagle Updated

Mar 20, 2015 Vehicle Model 0 comments

Updated version of F/A-12 Lonely Eagle from my previous Rebel Raiders mod. Now with animations, custom afterburner flames, textured hardpoint and a (simple...

Post comment Comments  (50 - 60 of 3,178)
John_Silver
John_Silver Mar 13 2015, 10:36pm says:

TimeS, I've got a question.
I'm making a mission that have two stealth aircraft face each other. Is there any way I can make enemy AI ace ignore my (player's) stealth capabilities? Too much cheance of losing track of each other, otherwise.

Also, I think editor would benefit from NPC mission "pursue player" (or "pursue specific unit" with "player" as subsetting), that would make enemy go after the player, while ignoring other friendly units.

+1 vote     reply to comment
timeSymmetry Creator
timeSymmetry Mar 14 2015, 5:38pm replied:

@John_Silver for that it seems better to add a special code for a specific Ai to ignore Stealth and pursue a single unit

@MyHatismyFriend & Nergal01, I have to check, it is possible that the mutator is just a placeholder.

@IbizenThoth & bornloser, yes that is definitely needed.

I´m going to prepare a new update to release soon, nothing special yet, but I´ve been fixing some stuff in the editor and in the game overall that it can be useful to everyone

+1 vote   reply to comment
John_Silver
John_Silver Mar 15 2015, 1:19am replied:

Um, to claify.
The game doesn't have a way to make AIs ignore player's stealt now, but you're considering adding hat option, right?

Also, by "targeting player" I meant that it doesn't have to be tied to ingoring player stealth, bt rather the NPC mission for enemy ace squadons, so that they would target player, specifically, even when there are other friendly units present. (Alternately, it could be realised trough adding "player" target priority setting for "Destory enemies" mission).

+1 vote     reply to comment
timeSymmetry Creator
timeSymmetry Mar 15 2015, 11:01am replied:

I see thanks for the clarification, I didn’t understand that way at first, so a new kind of NPC mission, to Hunt/Protect the player.

+1 vote   reply to comment
Nergal01
Nergal01 Mar 14 2015, 7:12pm replied:

TS, any chance of including "improved" more readable templates for planes, weapons, etc in the next update?

+1 vote     reply to comment
timeSymmetry Creator
timeSymmetry Mar 15 2015, 11:02am replied:

I was going to add the updated template in that thread, but yes I can update the rest and include in the next build

+1 vote   reply to comment
MyHatismyFriend
MyHatismyFriend Mar 14 2015, 5:20am replied:

I think it's broken at the moment but there is mutator support in the Mission Rules window. Turn on the No Stealth Mutator and you should be good (when it is fix)????

+1 vote     reply to comment
Nergal01
Nergal01 Mar 14 2015, 7:31am replied:

Last time I tried mutator doesn't work at all on battle scenarios though.

Maybe enabling it via hardcoding will do the trick?

+1 vote     reply to comment
IbizenThoth
IbizenThoth Mar 14 2015, 12:19am replied:

Personally, I think we need much more granular options for tweaking NPC behavior than simple skill sliders. I mean, I get the feeling that AI do different things differently at different levels, but the slider is really opaque as a method of controlling AI behavior.

+1 vote     reply to comment
bornloser
bornloser Mar 14 2015, 12:38am replied:

agreed, skill should just be reflexes and accuracy while everything else has its own parameters.

+1 vote     reply to comment
IbizenThoth
IbizenThoth Mar 14 2015, 1:05am replied:

It would also make it easier to understand how certain behaviors work, especially if you turn off all behaviors except for one.

+1 vote     reply to comment
SlyCooperFan1
SlyCooperFan1 Mar 8 2015, 12:10pm says:

I'm getting sick of this. The editor in the game is horrendous, and me even trying to make a mission causes so many CTDs that it isn't even worth it. Why are fixing the game's bugs not on top priority, TS? Why do the editor and the full game still have to have so many crashes? Put failsafes, show errors in the game itself and return to the title screen, try to figure out alternate ways that variables can be set in the mission editor. It doesn't matter how many aircraft or revamped campaigns you added if the damn game itself won't work. No game on Steam should crash this much, and it's just depressing. Beta or not, some of these issues have been here since 2012. Just drop the content and fix the bugs.

+1 vote     reply to comment
timeSymmetry Creator
timeSymmetry Mar 8 2015, 3:32pm replied:

@SlyCooperFan1, this behavior is mostly personal preference, I usually like to know immediately when there is an issue with the new content so I can fix it, rather than the game simply ignoring it.

But I can completely understand that it can be frustrating for someone making content.

I’ll add a fail safe for everything I can remember and make a new log so it can be more readable because the ogre log has already multiple prints, some of them false positives that don’t have any value to the player.

@Hellrot_RuRu34 the memory issue has been fixed, but then it cleaned a lot more textures that it should and introduced that lag from log “missing texture” printing issue. Because I still haven’t found a way to experience that issue myself, I when back and removed the memory cleaning code.

+6 votes   reply to comment
Nergal01
Nergal01 Mar 8 2015, 8:19pm replied:

While we're still at it, can you at least please, find out why the log keeps returning non-fatal ERROR:white.png or GreyBase.png not found for every like, 5 minutes?

+2 votes     reply to comment
szboudreau01
szboudreau01 Mar 8 2015, 1:03pm replied:

Yes.
Just.

Voice packs are just one example that can be so often ****** up because of typos. The game simply does NOT have something else to do with a mistyped line.

Let's say I made a file titled;
fireawaycoward.ogg

and I forget an A somewhere? I just accidentally crashed my game.

Why can't it just play a silent file when it can't find the thing specified in the .ini? It already does this with skins, too.

And all those other bugs and crashes, this is just one that seriously could be fixed, and could've been fixed the very moment the first radio pack came out.

+1 vote     reply to comment
SlyCooperFan1
SlyCooperFan1 Mar 8 2015, 3:04pm replied:

While I understand that you've been really outspoken against the game lately, leading everyone to downvote you, I'm surprised even one person downvoted you on this. This is one of the biggest things. The game does NOT need to fatally crash if it can't find a file it wants to reference. In most cases, it should continue gameplay smoothly with a simple error in the log to note that the file couldn't be found so it just didn't do anything.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Hellrot_RuRu34
Hellrot_RuRu34 Mar 8 2015, 12:19pm replied:

Yeah, the game really needs to be more fatal error-resistant. It'd really help if it generated crash logs at least. Or does it already?

+3 votes     reply to comment
SlyCooperFan1
SlyCooperFan1 Mar 8 2015, 12:22pm replied:

It does. Ogre.log and MyGUI.log under the VectorThrust folder. Problem is, most of the time, the errors generated are not readable by anyone. SoundBuffer? OpenAL running out of memory? How am I supposed to figure out what any of that means? The fatal errors are mind-boggling, and there's still so many of them.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Hellrot_RuRu34
Hellrot_RuRu34 Mar 8 2015, 12:42pm replied:

That sounds like the game runs out of memory.

I believe TS said previously that the game now unloads some resources from the memory. However, I've been browsing through planes and paint schemes at the plane select menu, and one texture turned up white. When I chose the next plane - game crashed.

This leads me to believe that VT still won't unload resources when nearing the memory limit. Dealing with that would solve a lot of crashes.

+3 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 25, 2012
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9.3

177 votes submitted.

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Ratings closed.

Highest Rated (13 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

Lowest Rated (2 agree) 5/10

Pretty unplayable at the current moment, UI's too small, the game is also very buggy for me currently, every time I start the game it just likes to empty out all my controls, so I have to keep 'reverting to default' and resetting my modified controls over and over again. And also Desura seems to have wiped all my skins and modified content when I update (And also wipes all options again, including Display options) I understand that this is a Alpha version, but the game's bugs and problems are too…

Jul 2 2012, 3:59am by DEathgod65

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