Awakening of the Rebellion 2.7 is the upcoming Version and its a massive Update and Improvement then the actual release Version 2.6. The AI is almost rewritten and will be a challenge as ever before There are new Story Events and reworked existing ones. All Space and Ground-Units are updated and/or replaced with new Models/Textures. New Soundeffects and Music-Tracks, a New Galaxy Map that is almost Canon and new Space and Groundmaps.

Report RSS Summer Update 2017: Closed Alpha!

In depth update about the last 6 months of development, new features, and hitting our alpha milestone!

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Awakening of the Rebellion Summer 2017 Update

Welcome everyone to another AotR update! It’s crazy to think that it’s been half a year since our last official mod update. Rest assured there has been a lot of fantastic additions on our trip towards AotR 2.7. I want to officially welcome Maxim, who has joined the SMG team full time to help us towards our goal. He’s so awesome, in fact, that most of the update will feature work he has been working on. Maxim started as our dedicated Galactic Conquest specialist, and has since dived into story campaign scripting, infrastructure overhauls, and even overhauling the entire AI. He has become a very valuable team member and it has been fantastic working with him so far. Truly a man of great talents!

We also have a new way to interact with the AotR community, our new AotR Discord server: discord.gg/tCX6Rtf We plan to use this as a more involved forum for the mod.

Come join the fun!

Anyways, there’s a lot of things to discuss so let’s get to it.

“Wouldn’t it be cool if…”

Ah yes, our infamous internal phrase of both wonder and despair. The result of many fantastic planned (but let’s be honest, mostly unplanned) things that naturally happened as Maxim joined our team as a full member. With a new teammate come new ideas, and we embraced many of the ideas with open hearts and minds. While Sly and Steinerhave been diligently working on our graphical overhaul, Maxim and I began to dive deep into the bowels of all things design and programming.

A Galaxy Not So Far Away

Before our cartographer Maxim joined on board, there were many requests to have a more canon AotR galaxy. At the same time, however, there was an overwhelming amount of feedback about how amazing the AotR galaxy was gameplay-wise. The web structure and clusters made conquering the galaxy very challenging with many avenues of attack to fend off. The ring of intersections also provided a tactical buffer between the entangled hub of the core and the outer rim strongholds.

At many points during development I had thought about when the right time would be to tackle such a project. There were many concerns to doing such a massive overhaul. We already had a story that was balanced and which relied on our old planet structure. Also, our galaxy was very different from the canon galaxy, which posed many design challenges as well. Maxim came in and showed us that we can have our cake and eat it too.

Initially Maxim had created a custom private modification to the AotR galaxy based on the Strategic Improvement mod’s galaxy coordinates. While that layout had the canon side of the galaxy implemented very well, it didn’t scream AotR to us. After seeing how inaccurate the AotR galaxy was, we knew it was impossible to keep the classic web in the game while also having canon planets.

So our entire team got to designing. We asked ourselves, what are the pillars of gameplay in AotR’s galaxy? What makes it AotR? We came up with 3 unique design elements for our galaxy: Strongholds protecting Clusters, Intersections protecting the Core, and the ability to traverse the galaxy in a circle around the border. The entire team planned the new galaxy around these pillars, while keeping planets relative to where they would be in canon. We also took into account positions for additional planets planned for our future expansions within our structure. While we break some of these rules due to the limitations placed by the canon, believe us when we say, this galaxy is one of our proudest achievements yet. And while we are sad to see our iconic galaxy web go, we know it is ultimately for the better. Maxim pulled something that was in our minds into a complete playable experience in under a month of work, and for that we are eternally grateful.

The Empire faction still starts out relatively centered around the core, while also having territories in the new Sullustian stronghold and the mines of Kessel. The Rebels continue to have their Hoth territories and Mon Cal Regions, but are now also a pretty immediate threat in the mid rim. The Black Sun have holds on previous Clone Wars Separatist planets, along with the Mandalorian and Ord Mantell sectors. Each faction is now on the move to try and unify their territories together, but ultimately a player will find it quite challenging to be able to hold everything. The entire galaxy’s infrastructure capabilities have also been rebalanced around the new layout, with each sector providing something unique that will make you think twice about letting the bonus fall into enemy hands. Sacrifices will have to be made, and it’s your choice to determine which areas are worth giving up.

Infrastructure Overhaul

Another key component of AotR’s gameplay is the extensive build tree of ground structures. However, there were some key design points with the old system we were not satisfied with. When playing as the Empire you could have 4-5 building slots completely dedicated to identical looking barracks structures or three consecutive buildings just dedicated towards army posts. For a non AotR veteran, the system to acquiring new ground units would get pretty daunting, with multiple tech centers for factories and barracks. On the other hand, the Rebels and Black Sun were uninteresting to play, mostly offering a linear progression of building ground bases.

At first we began to simplify the system. We figured there was no need for the Empire to have multiple techcenters just to gain access to one new vehicle or infantry squad. After taking a look at our unit lineup, we cut down the building levels to 3 tiers or less. But then we saw another fantastic opportunity. As we began to experiment more with working in Lua, Maxim and I realized very quickly the power of the system available to us.

For 2.7 we have designed a building upgrade system. The idea is fairly simple. Build a Level 1 barracks, and you can then choose to upgrade that building to a Level 2. But here’s the kicker, the Level 1 barracks will be replaced with the Level 2 barracks. If you decide you no longer wish to keep a more advanced building facility, you can then choose to downgrade it back to the level before and receive a credit refund for the difference in cost. Each building will now also have a weekly upkeep cost, so you might need to start thinking if you really need an army post on a back world planet.

Once we were happy with the Imperial infrastructure, we began to think about how to use it for the other two factions. The Rebels will rely on the level of their main base to determine what other structures they can build. Upgrading a Rebel base will also upgrade the other structures they have built if applicable. Meanwhile, the Black Sun will be the only faction able to build up to three of each building type (except the defensive ones). Each faction now has a unique playstyle, and there are now many considerations a player has to make when choosing how to build up their empire.

There are also some new buildings you can look forward to such as a Shutter Shield Generator, which blocks bombing runs and orbital strikes around a huge portion of the base, but offers no concealment from ground fire. The Black Sun also have their entire ground structure set reworked offering a complete new set of production buildings, a black sun outpost that provides garrisons, and two types of ship traders specializing in either refitted clone wars tech or new free market ships.

Putting the Intelligence in AI

After doing the infrastructure overhaul, we very quickly realized the main problem with all these changes was that the AI was not keen to our changes. We had to rip apart the AI and reconstruct it from scratch. Editing the AI is not for the faint of heart, and we had to learn the entire structure in order to know where to do the changes we needed. There is lots of undocumented behavior (on top of the already mangled mess that was the previous AotR AI). Many long nights were had to understand, reorganize, and implement the AI. I still to this day wonder if Maxim even needs sleep at all.

Not only did we add new functionality so that the AI could understand and use the building upgrade system, the entire AI has had a decision making overhaul which was mostly redesigned by Maxim. If you thought the AI was smart and challenging before, you better prepare yourself. This AI is no joke. They know your plans, they know how to beat them, and they are planning for galaxy-wide domination. You have been warned.

Closed Alpha Build

Because of all the advancements made in the past 6 months, we are now at what is considered the Alpha stage in development. For those that aren’t keen on software development slang, Alpha basically means we are feature freezing the game. We are at a point where all of our main system overhauls are completed, but we still need to finish some implementation and final polish of the new content. As such, we are sending out builds of 2.7 to a closed participant pool, in order to give us design feedback and stability testing.

Before anyone starts to ask for a build, please know that asking us for a build will not get you one. Our test pool has been selected by the team, and you will be messaged if you are one of the lucky few. If you are an active viewer of EaW related content on Youtube, you may begin to see some gameplay footage of the new version popping up. We are not at the point yet where we wish to give out a build to the public, as many things are still in progress.

So that about sums up the last 6 months of development time. There is a lot of things I probably missed, but what fun would a new release be without at least some surprises? Thanks for reading and of course for being such a great supporting community.

Comments
leyamasa
leyamasa

I am looking forward to the final grand design of 2.7 . I'll keep supporting of whatever I can possibly do for you, AotR mod team.

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Jennings17soco
Jennings17soco

This Maxim guy sounds like he's the G.O.A.T

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-MaxiM- Creator
-MaxiM-

Well I'm good at what I know, but I still need to learn more and I was also responsible for some of the bugs ;) But thanks for the kind words regardless :]

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avsbes
avsbes

looks great, i especially like the new building system. but i have a question:
will there be an Open beta? or will the beta phase also be closed ? and when can we expect a beta ?

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-MaxiM- Creator
-MaxiM-

Havent decided on that yet

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emanuelm707
emanuelm707

can wait to try it out when it comes out ill be playing it for days

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CT-1138
CT-1138

AOTR has to be the most ambitious mod I have seen in EAW to date.

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KinQQz
KinQQz

objectivly that probably goes to the vong mod, don't get me wrong tho AOTR is amazing aswell.

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Sly442 Creator
Sly442

There's also the late Ultimate Empire at War which aimed to span from the pre-Ruusan Republic to the New Republic.

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Kad_Venku
Kad_Venku

There is a lot of ambitious projects all over ModDB.
Sadly only a few of those ambitious projects ever made it to a release.

With that in mind I'd personally count AotR amongst the most ambitious and iconic mods that have been released.

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DarthRevansRevenge
DarthRevansRevenge

another is TR:ICW submods. there is some crazy stuff just waiting to start work on as soon as 2.2 comes out, which is massive in it's own right

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killdivas
killdivas

I don't care how old this game is- if we can keep getting quality content like this, I'll still be playing it on Windows 25 in the year 2030.

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DarthRevansRevenge
DarthRevansRevenge

i saw a light blue in the corner... are the Chiss a independent faction that can attack? or is that the EoTH? or someone else?

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-MaxiM- Creator
-MaxiM-

Light blue is the CSA, Chiss are dark blue and at the moment vey minor. They just hold nirauan, maybe in the future we make the new factions also attack :]

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graywolf126
graywolf126

Looking good guys. Changes sound awesome. Can't wait to try it.

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Armynumber23
Armynumber23

Im very excited for this mod,(Question)- Are we gonna see things canon from the movie or legends?

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-MaxiM- Creator
-MaxiM-

Everything we like will come in, so a mix of canon and legends :)

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DarthRevansRevenge
DarthRevansRevenge

currect me if i'm wrong. you use legends to shore up Canon, correct? but stay as canonical as possible?

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ThatOneBullet Author
ThatOneBullet

It really depends on the situation. We try and keep the story canon based on Disney, and fit in parts from Legends where it makes sense. For units we mainly go for Legends since there are some questionable changes in Disney canon (such as A-wings having no shields)

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Jeroenimo
Jeroenimo

Interesting, why did you try to rebuild the AI in the first place? Surely the vanilla FoC AI wasn't that bad?

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-MaxiM- Creator
-MaxiM-

Since we changed the whole infrastructure we had to adjust the AI anyways (otherwise it wouldnt build any ground buildings) and while i was at it, I also changed alot more and now I am going to tackle the Tactical AI, which has some flaws and will be much better in the future.

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TaShadan
TaShadan

Awesome! Looking forward to it!

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skyline5gtr
skyline5gtr

Good luck guys and stay strong the last stretch. Message me if you need another tester or fresh set of constructive eyes

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dafaulkn
dafaulkn

Hey guys, so over the years of playing EAW, I've only wanted to see 4 changes. Tell me what you guys think of these.

1. Have the ability to create your fleet's defensive formation over a controlled planet (like ground units on ground maps). The automated formation sometimes don't fit my defensive combat tactics. I would even settle to have my ships start closer to my space station. I like to let my space station take the bulk of enemy fire because it can repair itself, my star destroyers cant.

2. Have the ability to send multiple fleets from multiple system to one location and they exit hyperspace at the same time. 2.6 AI can do it. Is there a why for us to do it too? that possible?

3 Would save us hours to have an auto retreat button next to the auto resolve button for space combat. If land units are over a system and an enemy ship arrives I should have the option to just have them retreat with out me having to go through the loading screen and waiting for the cool down to retreat. Auto resolve sometime just kills my units.

4. After hitting retreat from space combat, I would love to see all the fleet leave when entering hyperspace and not just a few with some remaining. Over even just a cut scene from the movie when entering hyper space, like the star traces

Are these types of updates even possible? Share you thoughts!
And thanks for all the changes so far, you guys have really made the game soooooo much better.

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Phasm
Phasm

Amazing to hear from you guys, definitely looking forward to further updates. Been following this mod for ages and enjoyed it immensely.

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zombiedeadpool0
zombiedeadpool0

I have to 2 (Questions) if you want to answer but take your time :D

1: Is 2.7 come out in December cause we can't wait!

2: I saw the footage in this game and the characters, vehicles and space looks pretty smooth like my jaw just dropped when i saw the images, even the gameplay looks marvelous but there is one thing i'm curious....Is there Galen Marek in AOTR? I did saw Kota which that was a blessing cause he is funny and took a pain in the butt to add him but wondering "Where is Galen?" I'm curious that's all.

That is pretty much it ._. Have a nice day good sir.

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Rookisa46
Rookisa46

Please don't ask about release dates... But to answer your question, I'm willing to bet that Galen will also be in the game seeing as Kota was added to the game.

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Rookisa46
Rookisa46

Yay! N1 Star fighters! I like the look of the mod already. I can't wait for future updates to this mod!

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Norean
Norean

As much as a love this mod. I find it impossible to do much of anything, best I was able to do as the rebels was hold out for a few ingame weeks before I was out of money to replace the losses I had taken during. You get no time to prepare and barely any income unless you are playing as the empire. And now you are making it even harder to survive the start of the game. I like the challenge, but I don't want to play a game that I know is going to be a loss.

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