As you may (or may not..) have read in previous updates, about six months ago we decided to re-code Ham and Jam from scratch. This was a hard decision for us, we had a semi-working version of the mod but ultimately it was deeply flawed in many places. Partly this was down to it being the first release of the Source SDK which was rather buggy and also it was our first experience of actually coding a mod. If we had decided to keep working with what we had inevitably it would come back and bite us in the arse. So we weighed up the pro's and con's and took the step of re-starting the code side of the mod from scratch to allow us a better crack at getting what we wanted doing, done right.
We've learnt alot in the year or so of tinkering around and we are proud to announce that we have finally overtaken the point at which we decided to restart. All the features we had in at that point have been recoded and even more have been added and they all work much better than they ever did. Everything is much cleaner, faster, efficient and modular. Adding stuff is a joy now compared to what it used to be.
To celebrate we've had a bit of spring (summer?) tidy of the media pages and we've replaced all the map images with brand spanking new ones. As well as those twenty new map images we've also re-done the renders page and added thirteen new screenshots of vehicles and weapons which are all textured and currently in-game. We will also over the coming months be adding more images to the playtests sections so you can see some interesting and odd angles we get from our test sessions.
The last bit of media is something that has been a long time coming, we previewed it a few months back but it is now final, you've probably guessed what it is from Spine's previous Developer Diary post but for those who haven't, it is the final "British Infantry" model, created by Jed and Spine (with some original texture work by Alun).
Jed and Spine have spent months working on this models trying not only to get them to look right and accurate, but also optimising them as much as possible to give the best possible performance. We've taken a "modular" approach to creating these models so that producing alternate version is much quicker than before. We'll probably discuss how this works in a future developer diary.
So without further ado...
We've use no trickery in the render except to use HDR lighting and some nice shadows. The models and textures are exactly the same ones as we use in game and the render even uses the same normal, specular and exponent maps. Why would we lie to you?
If you'd like a larger version of the group picture, you can find a copy here and also, Jed has put together a wallpaper for those who might like one which you can grab here. Finally if you're from the U.K. and grew up in the 1980's, you might find this version of the 360 preview more appealing...
Hope you've enjoyed the media update, discuss it in the forums, tell your friends and we'll see you next month!