You have games like the original Quake 3, old school, very fast-paced, arcade-ish, often with a simple yet perfected gameplay.
Then you have games that attempt at realism, slower paced, based on strategy rather than reflexes.
But, what if you want something in between? And you want it open-source? And you want it to run on an old machine?
The main goal of this engine&game mod is to achieve that balance.

This is basically what has changed so far:
-Four Classes (soon to be five): Combatant, Engineer, Sniper and Heavy (Medic will be next)

-New weapons:
-- Axe
-- 2 assault rifles
-- 2 submachineguns
-- 2 types of pistol and a mini SMG to serve as sidearms (dual or single)
-- 2 light machineguns
-- 3 "full-power" rifles
-- A flamethrower
-- Hand grenades
-- Sticky explosive charge
-Special items:
-- Welding gun
-New player animations.
-Sprinting, weapon magazines, iron-sights zooming, alt-fire, weapon attachments.
-MD5 (doom 3's) Models
-Hitboxes (localized damage, headshots and all), relative to MD3 and MD5
-Pieces of armor protecting different bodyparts
-Fixed turrets
-some destructable environment
-New melee combat (combos, power-strikes, blocking)

What's in the pipeline:
-Wall jumps
-Damage from slamming into a wall
-Medic class with portable medikits
-Rotating doors
-Coop zombie mode
-Powered armor
-Bomb mode
-Whatever is of inspiration!

Some elements of the mod itself may change over time. Balance will likely change, especially since the dev team has been composed only by myself so far.

A more detailed description of gameplay follows.

==Classes and weapons==
There are, currently, four classes. Each class has its own stats and six weapon slots: melee, sidearm, primary, secondary, and two special slots.
As of now, weapons have a further restriction in team-based games, as you can spawn only with your team's weapons (Once you are in game however, you can pick up enemy weapons). To add on that, you can currently use a weapon ONLY if your class supports it, e.g. no snipers with rocket launchers. This will likely change over time, and if you use an unsuitable weapon you'll only have a penalty in spread and/or recoil.

You can wield assault rifles, SMGs and shotguns as your primary weapons, and another shotgun or SMG or an old, WW2-style bolt-action rifle in your secondary slot.
As for speed and hit points, they're average.

You can use a flamethrower or a grenade launcher as your primary, and a SMG or a shotgun as your secondary. You also can carry a satchel charge instead of your hand grenades, and get to spawn with a free gas welding gun - used for repairing equipment and stuff like that.
Average hit points, slow speed (80%) -- to balance out the fact that your flamethrower is really deadly (yet heavy).

You have either a very accurate bolt-action sniper rifle, and a slightly less accurate semiautomatic one (depending on team as of now).
Your secondary is a SMG.
Less hit points (75), but fast speed (120%).

You can have in your primary slot either a rocket launcher or a machinegun, and a shotgun in your secondary.
Also you can bring with you satchel charges instead of hand grenades, just like the engineer.
More hit points (125), but slow speed (80%).

(Medic, coming soon)
The primary slot is restricted to a syringe-style medikit, which heals over a period of some seconds but is plentiful in "ammo". You can keep a SMG, shotgun or bolt-action in your secondary.
You also spawn with a box-style medikit, scarce in ammo that however heals quickly and by a large extent.
Less hit points (75), average speed -- to balance out the fact that you can heal yourself.

All classes can also have a sidearm and hand grenades, and get a default melee weapon (currently an ax - because knives are for sissies!).
You can cook said grenades, with all the risks involved.

Shooting is now less accurate the faster you move, as a tiny step towards realism. This is more or less dramatic depending on the weapon: as a general rule, close range weapons have very little penalty - you can run and hop all over the place and still blast your shotgun around - while long range weapons have heftier penalties -you have to be pretty much still to use a sniper rifle.

Now weapons of the same caliber do the same damage, regardless if it's a rifle or a machinegun.
The type of bullet also affects how much easily armor is penetrated. Slower bullets will mostly damage the armor, while faster bullets will rather damage whoever is in it.

==Hitboxes and armor==
Hitboxes use, as of now, a somewhat simplified version of the player model to determine hits. The damage output is different according to which area is hit:

Head - 6x damage
Neck - 2x damage
Upper torso - 1.35x damage
Lower torso - 1x damage
Limbs - 0.3x damage

There are three pieces of armor:
Helmet - 1.5x protection to the head (if you have one, headshots from most weapons won't one-hit-kill you). Can take 30 points of damage.
Hard armor - protects lower and upper torso, full protection. Can take 100 points of damage.
Jacket - Gives half the protection of helmet or hard armor, and is worn under said hard armor. Protects all bodyparts except the head, and can relieve you from 100 points of damage.

The percentage of damage that is stopped by an armor piece (which means, doesn't penetrate) damages the armor itself, that will be destroyed once it reaches its point of "critical existence failure".

Currently you can't scavenge armor off dead players - that will change, given enough time.

==Other rules==
Sprinting takes your stamina (along with jumping) and multiplies your forward speed by 50%.

Some things in the map can be destroyed if they take enough damage.
In addition, some of these can explode. Who doesn't love exploding barrels?
Currently, said things do not respawn.
Only fixed turrets (heavy machineguns) can have a comeback if wrecked, since an engineer can pull out his "Weld-O-Master 2400" and make it as new once again.

In instaGib mode, the railgun has been replaced to the (otherwise identical) laser gun. In said mode you can choose whether to use hitboxes or not via a cVar.

==Bugs not to be surprised by==
Yeah, a side effect of development. The worst:

-Headshot hit detection is somewhat iffy in the older MD3 models; the bug appears to be solved with the addition of MD5 models.
-A few player animations jump awkwardly from one to another - especially the death animation.

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Why embark in this messy bunch of work? I've asked myself the same thing a few times. But *drum rolls* The time has come, and the benefits of coding NPCs in have piled up with each day of development, and so did inspiration.

The goal is to make AI-controlled entities different from the bots that we already have, that can be interfaced with script files and/or the map editor.

-Singleplayer campaign
Sounds far-fetched? Maybe, but as always I'll start with small steps. A simple mission or two, on the same wavelength of the tomb tutorial map. Think Sauerbraten, they have some fun singleplayer missions to play alongside multiplayer.

-Cooperation / Zombie mode
This is an even more important reason. Using dumbed-down bots as zombies is both limiting and wasteful.

-The reasons why bots aren't suitable
1) The bot AI is built with one purpose in mind: emulating a player as well as they can - the default OA bots manage that well enough. That means considerable thinking depth and independence, working in teams, following the goal of every game mode -- which can imply many things other than blowing someone to smithereens. The bot AI is very complex.

All while the singleplayer/Coop AI would need (for the moment) pretty much two things: Following a script (such as patrolling waypoints) and fighting the player(s) and/or other NPCs. That is true for anything from the final boss to the lowliest cannon fodder.
Merging these two things would probably do more harm than good.

2) Even outside of their AI, bots are coded in every respect like players. Again, the core server code that handles clients (players and bots) is pretty arcane and better just left alone. What to send to whom, etc.
Also, even the game mechanics (not the core, the .vm) would need extensive modifications to accomodate that. Just scratching on the surface, the respawn mechanics.
I did experiment a bit on the bots before moving on to understand this.

3) NPCs should be spawned in relatively large numbers, at the beginning, via map layout, or via scripts, and just be removed at the end of a level or when they die. The clients need, again, some complicated pathways for that to happen.

=== Progress ===
Surprisingly, getting them to spawn without crashing was relatively painless.
Models are still behind however:

Mr. Armor Shard firing his invisible gun.

Using the armor shard as a placeholder. You see a NPC relentlessly firing an invisible gun, complete with invisible infinite, magic-reloaded ammo.

Mr. Armor Shard reaps another kill

Yeah. That used to be me. Now they can target you and hit you with surprising (read: too much) accuracy. However, as of now (7 nov) they can't move, except for falling. They're much like turrets.

Movement, AI, and graphics are the next steps.

(9 nov) Adding movement proved disastrous. Despite having "Fatal errors" in the AI, the Angry Armor Shard o' Doom was teleporting around the map mowing me down with its unlimited ammo, impossible to hit and sometimes to see.
(11 nov) Movement somewhat fixed, but still far from done.
(11 nov, 2) Basic movement (A to B) works
(13 nov) Moving on to weapon usage
(14 nov) NPCs now have a target detection algorithm that considers field of view, target distance, target speed and how much in front of them the target is.
(16 nov) NPCs will now pick a weapon taking into account enemy distance, ammo left and preference (similar, but not exactly like bot weights). Strangely head aim is a bit disappointing now. It will stay off for the moment.
(19 nov) Aiming issues fixed, now giving them a model.
(20 nov) Models are working (the headlessness will be addressed soon)
Enough with these armor shards
(20 nov, 2) Hitboxes work. Wow, it's been quick.
(26 nov) They can now hear sounds. On to map scripting (already partially done).

(30 jul) huge break in the news, but it's still going (albeit a bit slowly).
Now the game will load an additional file alongside the map .bsp (e.g. q3dm1.npcdef) that will contain info about any NPCs used in the map - e.g. hit points, model, speed, acceleration, how you'll interact if you use your action key on them, etc. so that in different maps you can have drastically different enemies - currently up to 8 types, but it'd be really trivial to raise that limit should the need arise.

The rest is done via map editor - their weapon, what to do when spawned, waypoints to follow, etc.
What needs to be done is deaths of NPCs "firing their targets", that is, activating something like a button activates a door. So when you've defeated that boss, the exit door will conveniently open by force of plot.

Additional mapping features (keys, multiple switches to open one door, skill level-based events such as more enemies spawning, ...) are a bit lacking and are on their way in. Already made keys in the classic doom style (blue yellow and red).
The keys could also be used in MP team mode, since the two teams could be made to carry the respectively color-coded key by default...

MD5 support in progress...

MD5 support in progress...

News 4 comments

Of course it's not proving too easy, but it's on the pipeline.

RSS Files
18-08 Release

18-08 Release

Demo 3 comments

Release with many serious or trivial bugs fixed, and some attempts at performance improvement.

28-07 Demo release

28-07 Demo release


Alright, I had to remove and reupload the 26-07 release since it had a bug with the hitboxes. Anyway, this release has the MD5 mostly working, and is...

Adjusted MD5 blender exporter

Adjusted MD5 blender exporter

Modelling Tool

Here is the MD5 exporter with a small fix to allow you to export some animations without some channels. That is, some bones move, and other don't - this...

19-06 Demo release

19-06 Demo release


New, considerable, update. Includes working (at least, freshly tested...) binaries for Linux and Windows, updated pak files with a new map, source code...

Blender Terrain scripts

Blender Terrain scripts

Mapping Tool

Blender scripts to turn an elevation grid into a terrain in .map format to be used in Radiant.

Project RDX Source code, 9 May 2011

Project RDX Source code, 9 May 2011

Source Code

Temporary source code upload. This is split in: engine (openarena-engine-0.8.1) SDK (openarena-RLC) RLC is the old name. Will be renamed RDX soon enough...

Comments  (0 - 10 of 11)

it worked and it was interesting. damage levels seem to be just perfect (in general). it played quite i was hopping for

headshot hits seem to not work at all... except for bots.

is there possibility to swap your primary/secondary somehow (to those laying in ground) ? i couldnt figure it out.

also one wish for shotty: is it possible to make one of the pellets always hit centre ? i think it could balance it nicely to not be completely useless at longer ranges. some games have done this with pretty nice shotgun balance (Rainbow six vegas 2, BF bad company 2, MOH 2010)

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Nubstrike Creator

Gooood, very good
Yeah, the headshots are iffy, they've always been.
I'm now working on implementing MD5 models (those used in Doom 3) so hopefully I'll scrap current hitboxes completely and re-make them from scratch. The MD3 hit box code is horrendously messy.

About shotty:
It already does - one pellet goes in center. The pellet is just not 100% accurate, but comparable with a pistol. The other pellets go off in a sort of hexagon pattern (7 pellets in total), each with its own spread.

Dropping weapons: Select weapon and press H.
The command to bind is "drop weapon".

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either im realy bad or windows (ofcourse its experimental) version just doesnt work.

unknown event *insert number*

i went as far as cleaning my whole baseq3 folder (about 500mb's fo files)

buuuut finished version will be worth waiting :P, i realy dont have a hurry since i need to get new pc, this one is going to toast the videocard. cant realy play much.

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Nubstrike Creator

No worries, probably my fault - haven't really tested the windows binaries. Could be a good time to do so, since apparently they don't work.

By the way, i'm seriously thinking of merging the mod with the xreal engine. Is it as good as it seems? MD5 model support sounds really awesome.

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xreal is neat, not a super engine as they have hyped it to be but very graphics/performance wise.

they have moved on to Wolfenstein ET so the IoQuake 3 version is pretty much dead. but i dont think that matters much.

gotta test the new version of RDX now ---->

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hmm it doesnt work with OA, error i get is "bad system trap 46"

sooo, now i try with chili quake xxl (which comes with external .EXE, one virus infected my Quake3.exe so it was removed.)

i placed pak7-mod.pk3 into baseq3 located in chili quake xxl (its a graphilcal modification, i can run other mods with it but not all) but those binaries i put into Quake 3 folder where chili quake xxl reads them.

result is that i get some weird midgets jumping at me and game with all other basic quake 3 assets.

i guess i have to try with quake 3 demo.

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Nubstrike Creator


Sounds like you are using Windows...

The only binaries I supplied as of now only work for Linux - hence "linux binaries"
the openarena.i386 and etc. files are basically the linux equivalents to openarena.exe and etc.

OA should work, the mod at this point doesn't use much from Q3 / OA aside from maps, textures and interface.

I'll upload a zip of experimental Windows binaries in moments.

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Great to see Quake 3 still being modded, do want to see this mod alive!

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Nubstrike Creator

Yeah, hopefully won't take long. However I always find something new to waste time on.

It's already possible to try a demo, but it's quite tricky to set up as of now.

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great to see it still going :P
So it does work with Q3 and open arena ? I erm... Demolished my quake 3 so have to use OA for now. I spread word a little.


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Nubstrike Creator

Hi, still going and trying to fix bugs.
Yeah, it works on either, even if the source code refers to some Q3 default models, you would likely get a couple headless characters.
One of these days I will upload the .pk3 with assets and a couple binaries, hopefully tomorrow or so.

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