What have we been up to since Alpha XIII was released? Read all about it in our development report.
Posted by plumo on Jun 15th, 2013
0 A.D. Development Report #12
Wildfire Games, the international group of volunteers developing 0 A.D., are happy to present this month's 0 A.D. development report.
If you want to find out more about the development of this open-source, cross-platform real-time strategy game or if you are interested in game development in general, it might provide an interesting read.
If you want to be part of this project, we urge you to post your application in our forums. We are currently looking for Gameplay, AI, Sound and Graphics Programmers along with Animators and 3D & texture artists. You prefer to do something else than programming or drawing? Luckily for your portfolio we are also looking for a Sound Lead, Video Editors, a Documentation Manager and Scenario Designers. Still no luck? Head to our forums and join our active community!
!!! We are in need of (skilled) programmers. If you are one, redirect yourself to this thread. Your contributions are crucial !!!
Performance has been a major bottleneck for quite some time. We know the problems, and we are committed to resolve them. Last two months we've seen an influx of new contributors who are keen to help us fix the lag. sbte committed some patches (sim interpolation optimization) and a couple of memory leaks have been fixed (thanks, Markus). Kuranes has also been working on optimization and his work seems very promising. He added VBO support to minimap entity rendering (1,5 ms/frame to 0,8 ms/frame, which may seem trivial but every millisecond counts!). But this is just the tip of the iceberg, his many other optimizations are WIP or being reviewed by us, but when they are committed to the game the increase in performance will be noticeable! Last but not least we have Redfox, a retired 0 A.D. programmer who became active again. Currently he is working on font rendering, but like Kuranes, he is dedicated to implement major code optimizations, and he has the know-how. Their work will make 0 A.D. the enjoyable and fluid experience, you always wanted it to be!
Peter a.k.a. alpha123 has joined the programming team. Peter has contributed quite a few patches to the game and has been a valuable contributor in design discussions.
Programming & Art & Sound
Our new project lead, Mythos_Ruler has been busy as well. So busy in fact that I'm reluctant to write down all the things he has been working on last two months. The major new feature is the blacksmith. Although the models are placeholders for now, in the near future you'll be able to upgrade your units in this new building. He also added new technologies, a new Spartan hero (Brasidas), rebalancing and tweaking the stats of almost every unit ingame, a new map, normal and specular map for desert terrain ... we could go on and on, but we insist you check out our next alpha release.
historic_bruno committed a lot of patches and bug fixes. I'll mention just a couple of them: updating Valgrind headers and fixing some memory leaks (patches by Markus), updating Boost Library to 1.53.0 and improving SDL 2.0 support among many other. He also added a game speed option to the match setup.
Leper also had a productive period. He cleaned up code, and reviewed and committed many functionality patches, that were written by contributors like Josh and KareemErgawy among others.
stwf has kept working on the Soundmanager. Memory leaks have been removed, code has been cleaned up and multiple song playlists are now used by civs that have multiple tracks defined.
Wraitii committed a few fixes and improvements related to water. More importantly, he is completely reworking the water code: adding support for different water heights (e.g. lake vs. sea), optimizing foam and shore waves ... On top of that, ships received a sinking animation! Never has loosing your fleet been more pleasant to watch.
Enrique has been working on shields, unit props and buildings for our next civilization: the Ptolemaic Egyptians! He is also designing, modeling and texturing the new blacksmiths.
Omri Lahav has been working on some new material for the Mauryans. He has just invited two new guest musicians (didgeridoo and celtic harp) to capture their performance. How many freeware, open-source projects have a live recorded soundtrack? We are sure you will hear the difference.
Yves is working hard on upgrading Spidermonkey. The first benchmarks are a bit disappointing, but Yves won't give up. This is not a simple task, but in the end performance and functionality will benefit greatly from the upgrade.
alpha123 and quantumstate reworked the armor system. Damage = Attack - Armour was changed to: Damage = Attack * 0.9^Armour (in case your unit has a 10% armor bonus). This change was necessary as techs now have the same effect on each unit. So a 10% armour tech will decrease damage by 10% for every unit.
We also want to thank all our contributors that are committing patches with new features and fixes. Not all of them make it into the report, but we are grateful. We can't do it without you guys and gals!
This month special kudos to sanderd17 who is giving archers range bonuses based on map height and Micket who modeled a Hippo and an Oryx (and a WIP tiger).
We'll get back to you next month with the latest development news!