News is a big thing for gaming and so far we have only dabbled into the blogging news field, up until now that is. Welcome to the Editor's Notes, updated with news that relates to the modding and indie scene. Not only will we fill you in on the news but also offer our opinions, giving the community a chance to discuss topics relevant to there interests.
Call of Duty's community manager Rob Bowling has mentioned on a fan podcast (fast forward to the 1:41 mark to hear the discussion on dedicated servers)that Modern Warfare 2 will not be getting any support for dedicated servers. As it stands now all all games even private games need to be run through a service being called "IWnet" which simply put is a peer 2 peer service where the best connection will be hosting the server as a listen server.
Currently mods that use the COD4 engine are all server based. With the above news of dedicated servers being dropped in favour of a more tightly controlled multiplayer system what will it mean for modders? One would be safe to assume that modding is not going to be supported out of the box any more, so only certified maps and gametypes are going to be playable.
Rob_Bowling wrote:I don't know, anything with the modding and changing (of custom game files) I'm not sure what the plan is for later down the road on IWnet for that stuff.
So this either means modders will have to wait for the ability to change content, it just wont be supported or it will be very tightly controlled as far as what is and isn't allowed to be played any more. I cant say I'm to impressed with the initial decision but I will reserve my judgement for "if" they decide to let people know what will be expected as far as modding goes.
Thank you to Mr_Cyberpunk for the heads up!
** Update: Just to give you guys an update on the whole modding issue with MW2, today Gameinformer has just written an article that should give you guys a fair idea with what they have planned for modders.
Someone wrote:"We're just prioritizing the player experience above the modders and the tuners," says West (Infinity Ward head Jason West). He points toward the mounting feedback IW has received from PC fans of Modern Warfare who couldn't find a decent server to play on between all of the cheaters, the insular communities, and huge skill level disparities that the original game's community fractured into. "We thought maybe it would be cool if the fans could play the game," he laughs.
And with that modders hopes and dreams of customising the new game modes have been dashed with what almost seems like a careless statement. You can read the entire write up here. So guys what can we expect now? Will there be a official statement released that will give us hope again or is this it?
Crytek is excited to announce that their latest all-in-one development solution CryENGINE 3 is now available for all developers. CryENGINE 3 is the first game development platform for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, MMO, DX9/DX10 that also is truly Next-Gen-Ready - with scalable computation and graphics for all major upcoming platforms. It provides the complete game engine to create AAA quality next generation games, and includes the redesigned CryENGINE 3 Sandbox level editor, a production-proven, 3rd generation "What you see is what you play" (WYSIWYP) - tool designed by and for professional developers.
CryENGINE 3 also introduces CryENGINE 3 Live Create. It allows developers to work with a single editor, but see and play the results in real-time on PC, PS3 and Xbox360, hooked up to a single dev PC. The engine takes care of the conversion and optimization of assets in real-time; enables instant, cross-platform changes to any part of game creation and as a result materially increases the speed, quality and significantly reduces the risk of multiplatform development.
"With CryENGINE 3 we are releasing the best development solution available today and tomorrow. With its scalable graphics and computation it is next-gen ready and with new features like CryENGINE 3 Live Create the best choice for game developers and companies developing serious games applications alike. It is the only game engine solution that enables real-time development and can ensure teams are able to maximise their own creativity, save budget and create greater gaming experiences." said Cevat Yerli, CEO & President of Crytek.
Carl_Jones_Director_of_Business_Development wrote:We're delighted to launch CryENGINE 3 and we look forward to seeing what developers achieve with our all-new technology. CryENGINE 3 isn't just about providing our trademark highest-quality graphics and our out of the box AI and physics for the first time on consoles - it also delivers real benefits to all disciplines in games development. Programmers will create awesome new effects and gameplay; art, design and audio teams can play as they create with the fastest, entirely real-time WYSIWYP pipeline ever, materially reducing development time and risk - even producers, project managers and suits will love CryENGINE 3! Of course, our international team of more than 20 dedicated support staff are available right now to help our licensees make the most of CryENGINE 3; at their studio or at one of our support centres around the world.
CryENGINE® is the underlying technology for Crytek's critically acclaimed games Far Cry, Crysis, Crysis Warhead and NC Soft's recently released MMORPG blockbuster AION. It has already been licensed to a number of major game companies around the globe, including several recent serious games training and simulation projects. CryENGINE®3 is the underlying technology for the highly anticipated Crysis®2.
IceFrog the current modder who is maintaining the current version of DotA (Defence of the Ancients) a popular mod for WarCraft 3 has been whisked away on the Valve success train, taking on a what appears to be a management role of a team.
IceFrog wrote:I have some really awesome news I'd like to share with you guys. I am now leading a team at Valve! I finally have all the resources needed to do some very exciting stuff that you guys will love. I look forward to revealing more specific details when the time is right.
My goal and top priority in the future is to solve the surrounding issues that affect the DotA experience in order to allow it to reach new heights. Addressing these issues will enable us to further enjoy aspects of DotA such as the gameplay, mechanics, and in-game feel that currently work well and ought to be maintained. As I've said many times in the past and especially after today's developments, I am very excited about DotA's future!
This is fantastic news, DotA and its original creators have had some very awesome success as of late with the original creator Steve 'Guinsoo' Feak has already been snapped up by Riot Games to work on the upcoming League of Legends. Lets hope more modders find success like IceFrog did, and as a form of celebration here is a song about the mod that started it all.
Ah proposing, its a wonderful thing. The act of putting yourself out there to pop the big question sure takes a lot of guts, and in some cases trust in people you don't know. Meet a girl who calls herself Puffy Puppy who wishes to propose to her boyfriend, only this proposal takes place in a post apocalyptic wasteland of all things. Back in early June of 2009 Puffy Puppy asked the Bethesda modding community to help her craft a scenario in which the player (her boyfriend) gets a radio transmission from an unknown person requesting help. Check out the video for the rest of it.
It does not surprise me that modders where willing to help out someone with such an unusual request, go modders go! Oh and if you are wondering he said yes!
I recently had a chat with Travis Baldree, the president of Runic Games about their upcoming game Torchlight and the possibilities it posses as a modifiable dungeon crawler in the same vane as the epic Diablo franchise. As some of you may know I posses a love for the above mentioned type of game that Torchlight is and modding in general, as of yet I have not really been able to mix the two together and that is what really excites me for the release.
Torchlight uses a program called Preditor (The Professional Editor) which in short is a visual editor (WYSIWYG) with a focus on logic scripts that can be edited simply and effectively. With everything and I mean EVERYTHING being able to be edited within Preditor I'm really expecting Torchlight to catch on within ModDB and the modding community in general.
Travis_Baldree wrote: We've exposed just about everything to modding - you can create new levels, new artwork (our formats are open, so models, textures, sounds, music, etc), new quests, skills, classes, monsters, items, itemsets and recipes. All the stats are exposed for tuning modification, and we use a powerful effects system for skills and items that allows you to do some interesting things with them. Everything is basically editable from inside our tool, which also allows you to play the game inside itself (you can snap together a level and run around it, or make a new skill, or what have you, without starting the game proper). We've also got a visual scripting system that is drag and drop with connectable inputs and outputs, timelines, logic objects and so on. Particle editing is integrated into the editor, as well as game-world structure (dungeons, towns, regions, portals, etc). The UI is also moddable, and all our base filetypes (excepting textures and meshes, although there is an intermediate XML format for meshes) are all plain text until they are compressed. As long as you want to make an Action-RPG, you can pretty much make a new game.
Level editing uses tilesets or otherwise known as building blocks, think of this system much like you would Lego. These building blocks can have any number of triggers, animations, or collisions set too them, you can quite literally create a world that will react to the player and what he/she decides to do or even create a complex trap filled dungeon to explore. It will be very interesting to see how Runic Games is going to allow modders to integrate user created quests within the world as it is at release, will people be accepting user made quests from key NPC's in the game? I sure hope so, creating a world and adding to an existing one really is two different things.
Travis_Baldree wrote: As far as 3d model formats go, we're using Ogre3D's native model formats, and they've got exporters for just about every conceivable 3d package. We'll release our own 3dsmax exporters as well, and probably some models, tilesets, and rigs for people to use as a jumping off point. It's conceivable that we may release the full rig/meshset for the characters (hoping we will), but I can't say just yet - it would certainly make custom skill animations an easy thing for people to do.
The support for modders does seem quite high, in-fact they already have a wiki setup for just that, I have yet to get my hands on the editor myself to have a play and explore the options and abilities myself but it does look very promising! Keep an eye out for this title to drop late next month, I have a feeling it will be a great game for user-made content!