Star Trek: Enterprise - M.A.C.O. is the re-launch of the cancelled Star Trek: Enterprise – Temporal Cold War (E:TCW) single-player Half-Life 2 modification, now based on CryTek’s CryEngine 3 technology. By learning from the mistakes we made during the development of E:TCW and utilizing the majority of the modeling and texturing assets created for its predecessor, we are confident that production will move forward at a far greater speed than the last attempt. Storywise, STE:M aspires to showcase the character-based storytelling format of E:TCW in small, one-hour episodes; gameplay-wise however, it embraces the formula used in the Elite Force series of video games offering both linear combat levels and free roam sections to let players explore the NX-01 Enterprise within reasonable bounds.

Report article RSS Feed Media Release 21

Two new starships, more than a dozen new character models, lots of in-game screenshots and a video clip featuring voice acting work and FacePoser-compatible NPCs. Media Release 21 has arrived.

Posted by JohnBart on Sep 7th, 2008


A public newsletter in the middle of June and a Media Release teaser three weeks ago - besides the occasional chit-chat in the public sections of the forum these aforesaid media reports were the only sign of our activity since Media Update 20 had been released. Lots of things have happened during this period, good and bad alike; now we tell and show you our current milestones.

Ladies and Gentleman, the subspace signal entitled "Media Release 21" is hereby decoded!

Development Report

Reg. number: UE-SF-4312-ETCW

1. First the good news...

Heaps of work have been done in all the major areas of development since the last Media Release. Our dedicated team members are unsparing in their efforts to move the modification out of its current internal alpha state and make it look like an actual, playable computer game. Hopefully, after you have read through this Media Release, you will be able to affirm that they are on the right track.

Now, let us show you the major improvements of the past four months...

Our modellers were diligent as usual and produced a great number of starships, character models and level props since the previous Media Update. Let's showcase the vessels first!

The first starship below might be familiar to those readers who receive our newsletter (or regularly visit our main website). The vessel is the Kumari-class battle cruiser, probably the most widespread warship in service of the Andorian Imperial Guard. The class is equipped with four particle cannons (and ten torpedo launchers on models built after 2155), duranium hull plating, an engine capable of accelerating the vessel well beyond warp 5 and an advanced shield generator. This impressive list of specifications proves that the class rightly composes the backbone of the Andorian Fleet.

Kumari-class cruiser Kumari-class cruiser

Kumari-class cruiser Kumari-class cruiser

The vessel has been modelled by Abs (who sadly can not help us out anymore) and textured by CaptainSource, as usual.

The second starship is also a warship; a Bird-of-Prey belonging to the Romulan Star Empire. For more than a century, the species that founded this large and powerful empire proved to be a real mystery to the United Earth Government (and later the United Federation of Planets) as neither humans nor their allies have known anything about the Romulans, including their looks. This fact becomes even more peculiar if we consider that the Coalition of Planets (consisting of the Andorians, Tellarites, Vulcans and Humans) had even waged war with the aggressor Romulan Star Empire in the middle of the 22nd century.
The mystery of the species was eventually solved in 2266 when a Starfleet vessel could establish visual contact the first time with the crew of a Romulan ship.

Romulan Bird-of-Prey Romulan Bird-of-Prey

Although the designation "Bird-of-Prey" has been in use for centuries in human terminology to label Romulan warships, the name first came to be used in the middle of the 22nd century, when the United Earth vessel Enterprise encountered with the first known variant of the class. The "Bird-of-Prey" excelled the NX-class starships in every way; its advanced weaponry and experimental cloaking device made it a fearful enemy to the Coalition of Planets during the Earth-Romulan War.

The model has been built by our talented and resident modeller, TripTucker, and has been textured by CaptainSource.

Since March, our modelling crew has been strenuously working on new character models to be able to populate our maps as soon as possible. The results of their work can be seen below.

On the left, a screenshot of our custom Enterprise-crewmembers can be seen. Of course we are planning to make more than just ten models, so expect more to come. All of them are FacePoser-ready actors, and as such, they are ready to be choreographed for specific parts in the mod; from crucial storyline characters to extras in the background to give the maps life. On the right, you can see a picture which was already featured in our last newsletter (and on the main websites front page), the first screenshot of the Enterprise crew, who are already being set into choreographed scenes, in the maps, who have been superbly voiced by our talented voice acting crew.

Custom NPCs The crew

The following two screenshots showcase four members of an organization that played a pivotal role during the Xindi-mission in 2154, and who became a permanent part of the NX-01 crew following the mission's successful completion. They are the M.A.C.O.s, the operatives of a special military contingent of the United Earth Military Forces. Even though their organization is not part of Starfleet, Starfleet Command accepted Captain Jonathan Archer's recommendation in 2155 and transferred a detachment of M.A.C.O. troops to every existing Starfleet vessel to serve as additional protection.

Usually, M.A.C.Os are deployed either when a precise surgical strike must be performed against enemy forces or when the escort of Starfleet personnel require additional protection on away missions. 2156 onwards, they became a constant participant of the aforesaid away missions and Starfleet assault squads.

On the left you can see the first commanding officer of the M.A.C.O. detachment stationed aboard Enterprise, Major Joss Hayes. On the right, a trio of M.A.C.O. troops can be seen.

Major Joss Hayes Trio

Besides starships and character models, the team has also been busy in creating additional level prop to fill our existing levels with portable and (some) usable objects. A selection of these can be seen below.

First of all, engineering equipment. The left shot shows a corridor section on Deck-E which was under minor maintenance when the picture was made. It features an equipment case, various engineering tools and an enginner who cannot be seen as he is spending his coffee break in the Mess Hall. :)
On the right, you can see the injector housing of the Warp Core. As its name implies, its role is to house the injectors (equipment pivotal to the undisturbed operation of Enterprise's warp drive). The reason why the housing did not contain any injectors when the picture was made is unknown, but probably the engineers were in the middle of replacing them (or they have been stolen by Romulan spies - I mean the injectors, not the engineers). :)

Deck-E Injector housing, Deck-D

The next pair of pictures showcases some additional decorative elements.
The left picture shows the clean and arranged desktop of Captain Jonathan Archer, while the right screenshot features a large pile of standard-issue Starfleet containers. No one knows what these containers actually contain, but they look really nice. And besides, they can create a nice labyrinth for hide-and-seek if they are embarked to the cargo bay without any logical arrangement.

Enterprise NX-01, Deck-A, a.k.a. the Bridge Containers

All the abovementioned objects have been created by CaptainSource and TripTucker.

Our resident mappers, HerbieZ and LordHorusNL did their best to enhance all our existing maps and populate them with our custom NPCs. Hopefully, all of you will like the results. Let me show you some screenshots about all our current maps in the works.

1. The Bridge

Enterprise NX-01, Deck-A, a.k.a. the Bridge Enterprise NX-01, Deck-A, a.k.a. the Bridge
Enterprise NX-01, Deck-A, a.k.a. the Bridge Enterprise NX-01, Deck-A, a.k.a. the Bridge

2. Mess Hall

The Mess Hall The Mess Hall

3. Sickbay

The Sickbay The Sickbay

4. The transporter and minor repairs on a corridor

Deck-D, Transporter Deck-E

5. Jefferies Tubes (standard Starfleet maintenance shafts) on Deck-E

Deck-E Deck-E

6. Dry Dock (pay attention to the improved lightning effects)

Dry Dock Dry Dock
Dry Dock Dry Dock
Dry Dock Dry Dock
Dry Dock Dry Dock

All the levels have been (and still being) mapped by HerbieZ and LordHorusNL.

Cpangrace, our new and talented animator is busy in creating new custom animations for our NPCs while CaptainSource has started experimenting with FacePoser to be able to create the most important scripted sequences and scenes of the upcoming demo. Our crew of talented voice actors are also working very hard and record their lines every time when their schedule permit.

To demonstrate the talent of the animating and voice-acting crew, CaptainSource created the following featurette, starring our talented Croesus as Captain Archer.
Besides voice acting work, the video also demonstrates the fully-functional FacePoser-compatible 3D facial muscles of our custom NPCs in action. Enjoy!


You can find the original file here.

2. And now, the bad news...

As you can see from the media above we are still working very hard on our modification. However, development takes a lot of time (almost all of our free time, to be more precise) and to make things worse, several crewmembers have left our team in the last couple of months creating thus a small core developer team - probably smaller than the one required to complete this project.

The departing crewmembers include Abs (modeller of the Andorian cruiser), ManaT, Rickenbacker (our two talented coders), Shadow (designer of the new HUD) and Stavaas (a member of our mapping crew). They were unfortunately unable to continue working on the mod for one reason or another. We thank them their dedication and all the hard work they have done. A very special thanks goes to ManaT, who (among others) wrote and implemented a fully functional Zero-G environment to our modification.

Currently, we are looking for several experienced developers in the areas of mapping and coding.

The would-be mappers who apply for the position must be able to produce quality maps that are optimized without leaks. Knowledge of how to create realistic lighting effects and single-player coding events within the map is a great advantage.

Just as I wrote above, we are also in need of experienced coders. The applicants must possess a deep and thorough knowledge of Source-coding.

Besides these, we are also looking for a person who is confident in the usage of the Source Particle System Tool. This tool would allow us to create all the custom effects required for our maps currently in production - from console explosions to sand- and snowstorms.

Knowledge of the Star Trek universe is a great plus for all the applicants, though it is not a requirement.

This help-wanted section above concludes our 21st Media Update.
We would like to thank you for your continuing interest and your votes that constantly keep us in the Top20 list of Half-Life 2 modifications. Keep up the good work!

We guarantee that we will...

Post comment Comments
Henley Staff
Henley Sep 7 2008, 12:11pm says:

Woah good stuff, the VO in the video was good sounded almost like him! Authed!

+4 votes   reply to comment
NullSoldier
NullSoldier Sep 7 2008, 1:32pm replied:

Wow, everything looks pretty impressive, but the thing that caught my eye the most are those ship props and interiors. They are very impressive, you must have some awesome modelers and mappers.

EDIT: I meant to write a new comment and not to reply.

+4 votes     reply to comment
DarthZew
DarthZew Sep 7 2008, 1:19pm says:

WOW!!! Dude this is amazing I think this is the best mod for HL2 I have ever seen and I'm looking forward to playing it.

+4 votes     reply to comment
DarthZew
DarthZew Sep 7 2008, 1:27pm says:

Could you make those containers available to download for garrysmod?

+4 votes     reply to comment
DJ-Ready
DJ-Ready Sep 7 2008, 2:07pm says:

Looks great as usual :)
Good luck with recruiting people

+4 votes     reply to comment
Orion
Orion Sep 7 2008, 2:38pm says:

Wow... Im speechless! Seriously!! Once I pick my jaw up off the floor and get over the shock of all this I might be able to make a proper comment! lol.

Seriously awesome work yet again from you guys! Seriously Seriously Outstandingly AWESOME!! ;)

+4 votes     reply to comment
JohnBart Author
JohnBart Sep 7 2008, 3:49pm says:

@Henley, DJ-Ready, Orion2sirius: Thank you. :-)

@NullSoldier: Yep, the modelling and mapping crew (besides the coders, VAs and our talented animator) do their best to make everything look as authentic as possible. However, as we stated at the end of the report, we could use some extra help on the mapping front... ;-)

@DarthZew: Sure thing. As soon as the mod will be released. ;-)

+4 votes   reply to comment
awesomepossum
awesomepossum Sep 7 2008, 4:10pm says:

Wow, what an incredible amount of awesome content in one post. Nice work guys

+3 votes     reply to comment
ChromeAngel
ChromeAngel Sep 7 2008, 4:52pm says:

Wow HUGE media splurge, I was worried about this mod going quiet.

A word to the wise, if you released all this 2 or 3 images at a time, with your recruitment notice on each post and give it 3 to 5 days between posts you would get seen by a lot more front page visitors at moddb than you will with a single splurge that will come and go in a few days.

Quality total conversion by the looks of it. I hope you get all the contributors you need.

+4 votes     reply to comment
Orion
Orion Sep 8 2008, 11:43am replied:

That's actually a very good point IMO..!With the amount you've put into that one news update, However overwhelming and awesome as it was.. Thinking "Publicity Wise" for your project... Having it spread out over 3 or more updates within say, 2 weeks, would have given you a lot more exposure and repeat profile and / or TCW website visits etc.

(Personally speaking... I would have gladly viewed and praised each update individually and visited your profile a lot more!)

Also speaking as not only project manager of my own project, but mostly as the main PR person, I would have personally spread it out this way if I had that amount of SGTEW content to post in one shot!

Anyway... I'll end the rant... But Im sure ya get the drift of where we're coming from etc! lol... Again... Im amazed by your work guys! You've made me a trekkie again! (Well, from a gaming point of view anyway!) lol.

Please Keep It Up!! ;)

+2 votes     reply to comment
JohnBart Author
JohnBart Sep 8 2008, 1:56pm replied:

@ChromeAngel, Orion2Sirius: Thank you for your advice. Yes, the arguments in favour of this kind of PRing indeed makes sense... It is something that we (or rather I, as the PR-guy of E:TCW) should follow.
Thanks again for the recommendations, guys... ;-)

+1 vote   reply to comment
christian
christian Sep 7 2008, 9:12pm says:

Wow, I'm soooo impressed! So much has been done since your last release! I am really looking forward to this. Keep up the good work! You guys continue to one up yourselves

+2 votes     reply to comment
Mobius_gen
Mobius_gen Sep 8 2008, 10:56am says:

Amazing.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Aeneas2020
Aeneas2020 Sep 8 2008, 5:04pm says:

great work guys you are working towards something most mod teams can only dream of...im not even a trek fan but this is impressive stuff indeed no matter how small your core team gets press on people always come (we were down to as little as 3 at one point)

+2 votes     reply to comment
JohnBart Author
JohnBart Sep 8 2008, 5:37pm replied:

Thanks for your encouragement, Aeneas... ;-)
We hope that a couple of coders will indeed apply in the near future. There's a lot of coding work to do... :-)

+1 vote   reply to comment
Undying_Zombie
Undying_Zombie Sep 9 2008, 5:20am says:

Looks great guys! Keep up the good work. Hope you guys can find decent coders if that is what you guys are lacking at the moment..

I would try to lend a hand if I knew enough.. but to be honest I don't.

Oh and yes I am still around. ( Computer died, using old crappy computer right now.. should get a new, and much better computer by the 26th.. or sooner for that matter.. waiting on it being bult+shipped )

+2 votes     reply to comment
Nathanius
Nathanius Sep 9 2008, 8:34am says:

Absolutely riveting! Makes me mad that i didn't go into a computer programming or graphics course when I left high school for uni... If I did then i'd be able to help!

just remember, never give up! never surrender!

i'm rooting for you lot!

+2 votes     reply to comment
Worldwideweb
Worldwideweb Sep 17 2008, 6:17pm says:

don't let this mod die, please...enterprise is/was one of the best star trek series and a game about it would be....wonderful

+2 votes     reply to comment
JohnBart Author
JohnBart Sep 19 2008, 11:25am replied:

We will do our best not to let that happen... ;-)

+1 vote   reply to comment
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