In Postal III, The Postal Dude emigrates to Paradise's sister town of Catharsis as he previously blew up Paradise with a nuclear bomb. Due to the economic meltdown, the Dude drives into town and becomes stranded because he can not afford a tank of gas. He must then find work and do various odd jobs to escape the town.

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Hello everybody! Here we are back once again with another devblog post for Catharsis Reborn, discussing the work of the past few months.

This was an update that was supposed to be released around a month after the previous devblog, a smaller scale series of updates to be released as a template for a new devblog format, releasing shorter but much more frequent blogs to clue people into our work more often, but things rarely work on the timescale we predict with a project like this as expectations and ambitions meet reality, why this blog took several months instead of just the one will be explained later.

For now, here’s what we’ve been up to since the last blog.

The Showcase

- Alternate Ammo Types:

Dragon’s Breath and Armour Piercing Shotgun Shells

In the last devblog we mentioned that we were giving some of CR’s weapons alternate ammo types to make them feel more unique, with Explosive Shells for the Pump Action Shotgun being the first instance of these alt ammo types we implemented.

CR ExplosiveShellAmmo

The Explosive Shells were one of 3 initial ideas we had for alternate ammo types, the other 2 were Dragon’s Breath Shells for the Double Barrel Shotgun and Armour Piercing Shells for the Autoshotgun, these have now been implemented.

Dragon s Breath and AP Shells

Dragon’s Breath shells will light anyone you shoot on fire while Armour Piercing will boost your damage against armour wearers, and also pretty much anything else you’re blasting, if it can punch through kevlar you can bet it’ll tear through flesh as well!

To help balance these alternate ammo types out with the normal Buckshot shells the max amount of each of them the player can carry is 25 shells (a quarter of the max ammo for Buckshot, which is 100); This way the player can use these powerful alternate ammo types as trump cards, but not as game breakers to be hoarded and then spammed in any difficult firefight.

Tranquiliser Darts and Rubber Bullets

After giving each of the Shotguns their own alt ammo types we turned our attention to other weapons, starting with the Sniper Rifle.

The Sniper’s alt ammo type comes from an idea mentioned in the Postal 3 design docs, chemical Tranq Darts, these are a non lethal ammo type that will knock targets out cold after they’ve been shot.

CR TranqAmmo

Similarly, Rifles and LMGs get a non lethal ammo type in the form of Rubber Bullets, the rubber bullets used by LMGs are separate from those used by Rifles, LMG Rubber Bullets stand out by having a chance to fling targets ragdolling backwards on shots they don’t cause a knockout with.

CR RubberBulletsAmmo

And finally, the Pistols also have non lethal rounds as well, Paintball Rounds, split into Light and Heavy variants just like regular Pistol ammo; Paintball Rounds are more for stunning NPCs than doing proper damage, a shot to the front of the head will blind the target while otherwise it will have a chance to stun.

Paintball shots can eventually knock a target out, but they have a low amount of damage, Heavy Paintball rounds are easier to KO targets with than Light Paintballs.

CR PaintballAmmo

Unlike the Shotgun ammo types, which were our idea, these alternate ammo types were taken from the Postal 3 design doc.

The design doc included other ideas for non lethal ammo types, such as tear gas rounds or rotten fruit/vegetables to be fired from the RPG and a “Diet Pepsi Bomb” as an alternative to grenades, we decided not to include these ammo types.

  • The Pepsi Bomb idea was decided against because the way it would work, temporarily stunning NPCs in a radius, is functionally the same as our Flashbang weapon.
  • The Tear Gas rounds for the RPG were decided against because they would be redundant, as we already have Tear Gas as its own throwable.
  • The Rotten Fruit/Veg for the RPG was decided against because, well, firing a bunch of food from a Rocket Launcher is just a stupid sounding idea.

The design doc also included an idea for a Shotgun non lethal ammo type, Beanbag Rounds, we may end up adding this ammo type later, but for the time being this idea isn’t implemented in CR.

Alt Ammo on the HUD

Ammo counts for Alternate Ammo types have now been made to appear on the HUD, when the player’s current weapon has an alt ammo type and the player has some of that ammo, the amount of the alt ammo the player has will appear above the ammo counter when not loaded in smaller text.

Special Ammo Unloaded

These positions will swap when the alt ammo type is loaded, with the regular ammo counter displaying the amount of alt ammo left and the smaller count being used for the unloaded default ammo.

Special Ammo Loaded

To differentiate between the alt ammo count and regular ammo count, alt ammo will always have its amount displayed in yellow, this way the player can easily know if alternate or default ammo is loaded.

When switching ammo types, the name of the ammo type the player is switching to will also be displayed for a few seconds so they know what ammo is in use.

Special Ammo Ammo Type Name

And when you run out of alternate ammo, you will get a warning message as you switch back to regular ammo, so you won’t find yourself accidentally machine gunning half the townsfolk of Catharsis to death because you thought you were still using rubber bullets…

Special Ammo Out of Ammo Warning

Separate keybind for Alt Ammo

In the last devblog we mentioned that the Alter Weapon button, which is also used for functions like attaching the cat silencer to weapons or changing their fire modes (eg. cycling between Single and Double Shot on the Double Barrel), is the keybind used for cycling between regular and alternate ammo types, now Ammo Type cycling has a keybind of its own.

Alter Weapon and Ammo Type Seper

This means we can have weapons that are able to switch ammo types and also switch fire modes or attach Cat Silencers at the same time, so you can fire your Dragon’s Breath rounds in single or double barrel volleys, or attach a Cat Silencer to your Rubber Bullet M16 and get a pseudo-stealthy pseudo-moral Rifle, this allows weapons to be customised more and gives the player more variety in their arsenal.

- Pickup Models and Icons:

The Flare Gun now has a unique ammo pickup to go with its unique ammo type, like the other ammo pickups it comes with its own unique branding and colour scheme, so it stands out from other ammo boxes:

Flare Ammo Box

Tear Gas now has its own model and icon, making it a fully complete weapon asset wise:

teargas model

teargas icon

The model we picked out is an asset from CGTrader and the icon is, of course, by us.

So far we've decided to keep the textures as they came with the model, as they didn't feel out of place with the rest of the weapons, but they may get a rework in the future depending on feedback, the most important thing for us was replacing the placeholder Tear Gas was using previously (a reused flashbang model).

- NPC Upgrades:

A recent focus of ours has been improving the game’s NPCs, a crucial element of making the game world feel more alive and reactive, these changes have taken many forms, here’s a list of them:


Thought you could die with dignity? Think again!

Remember how if someone died in POSTAL 2 instead of reacting with shock or horror some NPCs would laugh, kick the corpse or just generally be very undignified about the whole thing?

CR CorpseTaunting

Well, this is now included in CR, this is a feature we implemented in a more limited form a while ago where cops would taunt your body, but it was buggy and worked inconsistently, now anyone can do it and they’ll do it to fellow NPCs as well, not just you!

NPC Inventory

The POSTAL Dude isn’t the only character in the game with an inventory system now, everyone has one!

NPCs will now spawn in with a random amount of cash on them and any items they buy with it will go into their inventory, these items will then be dropped if they are killed or knocked out, here’s a little demonstration from one of our test maps.

The game will also keep tracking this inventory data after the player leaves for another map, so if a particular NPC buys an item, you leave the map and return later and find them, they will still drop it if knocked out or killed!

This could lead to some interesting strategies emerging, a particularly cheapskate player might stalk an NPC who buys an item then murder them in a dark alley away from prying eyes to grab it, just to get out of paying!

NPC Item Use

With the addition of the NPC inventories we’ve also made it so that NPCs can use items just as the player does, these items will have the same effects on NPCs as they do for the player, so NPCs can now use healing items both when in combat and passively as they wander about the city, if a food item they use has been pissed on beforehand this can backfire with nasty results!

Play Fetch!

You might remember that in the last devblog one of the new additions to the Dude’s arsenal we announced was the Dog Bone, which can be used to recruit dogs by playing fetch with them.

After introducing the NPC inventory system, we decided to add the ability for NPCs to play fetch in the same way!


Each NPC will have a chance to spawn with a bone in their inventory and if they have one they will be able to play fetch with and recruit dogs, a dog recruited by an NPC will be loyal to them, following them around and attacking their enemies, just like the dogs recruited by the player do!

Our ambition with things like this is to shorten the list of things the player can do but NPCs can’t, breathing new life into the city and making it seem more dynamic.

Police Investigations

Cops will now work on investigating crime scenes in more detail, if they discover a body they will look around the nearby area for possible suspects, if someone is hanging around for too long while under suspicion, the Cop will go after them, that includes you.

CR Investigation

This means that if you escape a crime scene without being spotted, you can pin the blame on someone else and get away with it!

After these investigations, Cops will look for any dismembered limbs to clean up, if they spot one out in the open they will approach it and place it into an evidence bag.

Evidence Bag

Civilians can also now have a wide variety of reactions to bodies: Things like becoming scared, vomiting, or more disturbing responses like playing with the limbs or kicking the body, they also have a chance to rush to the Police to report the crime, which will prompt their investigation.

Home Ownership

We now have a home ownership system in the mod, what this means is that houses across the game world (whether that’s apartment rooms, shacks or full scale houses) will now have certain NPCs assigned as their owners.

If someone that isn’t a homeowner (whether that’s another NPC or the player) is spotted entering a home by the owner, there can be a variety of responses:

  • The owner reports the break in to Police/Private Security, if they’re on the map
  • The owner flees the area
  • The owner tries to defend their home by attacking the trespasser

A home owner alerted to a trespasser will be marked by a new burglar headblob:

CR HomeInvasion


We’ve also made it so that Police Officers and Security Guards won’t be considered trespassers, and that includes you if you put on a Cop Uniform, so the outfit allows you to get into even more areas that would otherwise be off limits, making disguises once again more of a worthwhile mechanic.

Animal Modifications

In Vanilla Postal 3 the cats found throughout Catharsis would always be the “Dervish Cat” variant based on the cats from POSTAL 2 Apocalypse Weekend, the ones that would spin like the Tasmanian Devil when attacking, regular cats were never seen.

Cats in CR now have a random chance to be either regular or dervish cats, regular cats can attack by using a snatch or a pounce while dervish cats still rely on their Tas style spin.

CR PissedOffCreature

If you stun a regular cat using Catnip Spray it will turn into a dervish one when you pick it up, this was inspired by a similar mechanic from POSTAL 2 Complete (, stunning cats through other methods like Flashbang blasts or Taser hits will leave them without the dervish ability.

CR CatStunning

We also fixed issues related to dog attacks, previously they had a habit of jumping at NPCs or the player but not actually doing any damage, now dogs are able to do damage with their jump attacks and they have a tendency to infight with cats.

CR AnimalInfighting

The Dogs also now have a pretty disgusting new feature, after eating a food item they’ll have a chance to take a dump.

CR DogCrap

This feature is based on a Vanilla P3 mechanic where dogs could eat limbs and then… Relieve themselves… But this feature only existed on specific maps picked out by the developers, we’ve changed this so now the mechanic applies to regular food items (which didn’t exist in Vanilla) and can happen on any map. Disgusting, but realistic!

Lastly, cats can also now steal food that NPCs have dropped, they run quite fast when they do this so they’ll be tough to catch!

CR CatFeed

CR CatSnatch

Chain Vomiting

A fairly self explanatory feature, returning from POSTAL 2, if an NPC starts throwing up any NPCs near them will also start vomiting, which can start a chain reaction of puking pedestrians, nasty!

CR ChainVomiting

Item Lures

NPCs will now react to dropped items much like they did in POSTAL 2.

NPCs that notice dropped items will often stare at them, considering whether to snatch the item and store it in their inventory or ignore it, NPCs that choose to take items also have a chance to use them shortly after pickup.


If multiple NPCs have their sights on the same item they can race against each other to grab it, sometimes this can lead to infighting if a really keen NPC has something they wanted stolen from them!

Cops will also react uniquely to dropped items, they aren't as likely to take regular items, but will make sure to grab illegal contraband and search for its own, using a similar investigation process as with corpses, a civilian hanging around near contraband might get mistaken for its owner, and receive a baton to the skull for their trouble!

Cops will also chase after civs who they spot collecting or using contraband items.

And it's not just humans that will take an interest in items, when it comes to food items animals can too! If they get a whiff of food, they can try and snatch it, sneaky bastards…

CR ItemLure

Another classic feature from POSTAL 2 that returns, the game will account for if an item has been pissed on, soaked food items will cause NPCs to vomit and animals to be stunned on consumption, the amount of health they recover when eaten is also drastically reduced, so maybe come up with a healthier diet plan!

Height Stimuli

If you're standing particularly high up above an NPC, for example on a rooftop, they now have a chance to notice and stare at you out of curiosity.

CR TallBuilding

Pathfinding Improvements

We’ve helped NPCs avoid getting stuck by giving them the ability to knock over obstacles, if an NPC detects they are stuck they will check for any nearby props in the way, if they find any they will push or kick them to free up space to move again.

Reaction Improvements

NPCs can now hear sound sources and observe visual stimuli from much further away, they also have much more dynamic reactions to gunshots, unarmed NPCs will observe and then back away and panic, armed NPCs will have a chance to either ignore the disturbance or (if the source was a non-cop) attempt to intervene, if the source of a gunshot is a Police NPC armed civilians will back away while armed Police will move in to back them up.

NPCs will also be alerted to nuclear blasts even from very far away, and shriek in fear after sighting them.

- Hostage Changes:

In vanilla Postal 3 it was impossible for a hostage to survive after you grabbed them, when releasing the hostage the Dude would snap their neck, meaning that they would either die to enemy damage or the player, this is why hostage taking was replaced with arresting when playing on the Good Path.

P3 Execution

This was annoying because it made the hostage taking feature unusable for pacifist players and arbitrarily forces you to murder even if you don't want to, so we changed it, now when you press the kick button while holding a hostage rather than snapping their neck and dropping the body the Dude will release them by kicking them away, sparing their life.

CR HostageSparing

If you just feel like being a prick you can still execute hostages by pressing the use key instead of the kick key while holding them, you're welcome.

We also restored a cut animation where held hostages fell over out of the Dude's arms after being killed, in the vanilla game the Dude would always play the neck snap animation regardless of whether you decided to execute the hostage or if they were killed by enemy attacks, and it looked pretty stupid for the Dude to break the neck of a corpse.

CR HostageDeath 1

- Wanted Stars:

Previously we mentioned that we’d added a Wanted System to CR, and that the Dude’s wanted status would be tracked across level transitions, essentially creating a system identical to the Wanted Bar from POSTAL 2: Commit crimes, the bar increases, get out of sight and it decreases, the more crimes you commit the longer the bar, the longer you have to wait to escape.

Recently we’ve worked on expanding on this system to add more consequences for crime, with the “Wanted Stars”, this was inspired by games like GTA and Saints Row but has its own unique implementation.

How it works is this, if you commit enough crimes to max out your wanted bar, you will get a star added to the bar, this will cause a wave of reinforcements to be sent to take you out, evading these reinforcements or killing/ko’ing all of them will clear your wanted level, to make things a little more difficult the wanted bar will tick down slower while you have wanted stars, making it harder to escape.

Wanted Star on HUD

If you do escape, then max out your wanted bar again, you will earn another star, causing a larger, stronger wave to be sent, and this process will repeat until you reach the star cap, the game will also reset your earned stars back to 1 at the start of a new day, to give you a bit of a break. The number of stars that can be earnt will be capped by story progress, but we plan to have an eventual total of 6, we currently have 4 stars implemented, the first star can be reached from the very start of the game (except in the Bridge prologue level) and the second will unlock after the Demo is completed (in the full game the cap will increase after the start of the second mission), the last 2 can be reached through cheats.

CR Reinforcements 1

Essentially, as the POSTAL 2 slogan said: “The game is only as violent as you are!”, every action has an equal and opposite reaction, the more trouble you cause the more the authorities will crack down on you and your crimes won’t be forgotten just because you escaped their grasp, if they catch sight of you again they won’t make the mistake of treating you lightly a second time.

Something else that’s interesting to note, we’ve also brought back the Police Helicopter to appear on Star number 3 (a military variant is planned for Star 6 as well), the helicopter was a mini boss in vanilla Postal 3, appearing very early game in the Cashmart level, our version of the helicopter can appear on any city map and also has a few tweaks compared to the vanilla version, it will have less health, do less damage and will also have a few extra visual effects (it will start smoking and emitting debris on low health).

This system is essentially a recreation of our old SWAT spawning system, seen in Trailer 3 of the mod, which predated the Wanted System entirely and sent reinforcements when you wiped out all of the cops present on a map, the Wanted Stars introduce a similar level of tough consequences for mayhem, but in a more in-depth, lasting way, it will also give those who want to be challenged by combat more a run for their money!

- Restored HL2 Hint System:

Those of you who have played Half-Life 2 will remember the occasional hints that popped up when picking up new weapons or playing through early game missions, displaying info on keybinds, these were included in Postal 3’s version of Source but for some reason Trashmasters disabled them and implemented their own hint system instead, which was used less often.

We’ve restored the HL2 system and added some tutorial tips that appear in certain circumstances, usually explaining a feature when the player encounters it for the first time or giving advice on early game maps, some of these are related to keybinds and others are related to general knowledge.

tutorial tip

tutorial tip 2

tutorial tip 3

We preferred the HL2 system over the P3 system because the HL2 version allows us to detect the keybind for a certain ability and display it correctly, ensuring that even if the player rebinds their keys the tips will still be accurate.

- Weapon Selector Bindings:

The weapon selector will now show your chosen binding on every category you hold a weapon for, to aid players in quickly swapping between weapons, unbound categories will be marked with an “N/A” marker to remind players to bind them.

Selector Text zoomed in

- Scripting Improvements:

Most people know Postal 3 is made on the Source Engine, but what many people who aren’t familiar with the game’s inner workings don’t realise is that the game is a sort of Frankenstein version of Source with its own quirks, it uses its own scripting language for many functions, this language is known as “Postal 3 Script” or p3s for short, a lot of the programming work that doesn’t utilise the source code goes through this language.

The trouble with that is that p3s is, to put it bluntly, pretty crap, and working on complex coding with it can be a nightmare, given the scope of our mod and all of the features we’ve been adding, which including mechanics never seen in the original game, that tends to be fairly often.

To help with this issue, we’ve introduced AngelScript to the code, a scripting language that can simplify much of the work that would otherwise go through p3s, it isn’t intended to be a total replacement of p3s, but an extension that interacts with p3s and makes life easier when it comes to programming, here’s a summary on our use of AngelScript from Kizoky, our lead programmer:

Postal3Script has always been a very obscure scripting language, lack of documentation, extremely weird syntaxes, and a very odd layout, which is unlike like any other scripting languages out there.

As Catharsis Reborn extended the AI of all NPCs, so did the code too, but this where the cracks began to appear.

Spaghetti, ping-pong code writing from A File, to B File, ridiculously increasing lines where a single Block can go from 1 to 100, and it was very hard to go back and try to fix something wrong with the behavior you wrote, because it's not that very clear at first glance, to really use Postal3Script you have to learn the ins and outs, and I believe even after a month you won't fully grasp it. (just remember that in 2016 the team was struggling with P3S!)

So there had to be a way of doing complex code without Postal3Script, at first (2020-2022) many of the complex behaviors were hardcoded inside the source code because Postal3Script wasn't fully understood back then. Slowly every hardcoded code was put into Postal3Script instead where it was obvious it must be there. (Inventory items for instance, due to scripting)

Creating dynamic events (such as the Wanted Reinforcements) without relying on modifying the maps and compiling back them everytime,was very, very questionable if it could be done with Postal3Script, but after brainstorming on this for hours it was clear it would end up with sweating blood.

LUA was a 'Block' monstrosity like Postal3Script, and it wouldn't have been that easy to implement it in CR, so I went with AngelScript.

Here are several facts about P3S:

- Hard to learn

- Only compiled when map restarts (can't force-recompile)

- Structure has a strict rule

- Compilation errors not always make sense

- Complex code might cause the AI to not work properly

- Very sensitive to spaces, tabs (heavily depends on how the function's compilation was programmed)

- Creativity isn't rewarded

- Complexity equals Spaghetti

- Extremely limited by functions in how you can interact with other entities

AngelScript has none of that, but this time spaghetti equals to programming skill.

AngelScript can access Postal3Script internal functions, like target, caller, memory, weapon, etc.. combine that with C++ syntax and you would get something like Postal3Script++.

We’ve also added the functionality for the code to be compiled with later versions of Visual Studio (a program used for software development), previously we were only able to use Visual Studio 2005 which as the “2005” suggests is a massively outdated program, it tended to be buggy and crash happy and generally very tedious to use for development, now we can use the much better VS-2022, the latest version, which should make our programming work a less frustrating and overall smoother process.

- Custom Launcher:

We’ve also started work on a launcher for the mod that will replace our original method of getting the game running, a Windows Batch File, the launcher will be a much nicer start to the game and includes links to all our social media pages and extra launch settings for both programmers and ordinary players.

CR Launcher

- Mapping Additions:

As most of our mapping work for the Demo has been completed, this field took more of a backseat this time around compared to previous updates, but there are a few things we’ve worked on in the past few months that are worth mentioning:

The “Glass Pass”

This was the first big mapping addition we finished after the last devblog, the way we handled breakable glass in CR’s maps used to be inconsistent, some glass panes would have what we could call “breaking glass”, which is destroyed entirely when damaged, while others would instead be what could be called “shattering glass”, which are damaged at the point of impact and then break further after multiple hits or if you walk into them, you can see the difference between the two in this clip.

The shattering glass looks much nicer and is mechanically more interesting, and we received some requests to make all our glass panes break in this way, we decided to follow through on that request and checked over all the maps, changing those that didn’t already shatter so they did so, now all of the breakable glass in the game will shatter in a very pretty looking way.

Glass Shatter

The “Invisible Wall Pass”

Previously we mentioned our efforts to block up possible escape routes out of the maps from the city maps that had unintentionally been made accessible by the addition of jumping, but we realised that other additions like grenade ragdolling, which in some circumstances can send the player flying off to the boundaries of the map, necessitated more work in this field.

As a result, we looked over the city maps and added invisible walls on all the borders between the playable areas of the map and the out of bounds areas, meaning it should now be virtually impossible to escape unless the players meddles with some serious glitching of the game or uses cheats.

CR InvisibleWallPass

The HugeMart Renovation


HugeMart is an interesting map and one that for CR comes with a long history.

For those of you who don’t already know, HugeMart is the mall of Catharsis City, it can be compared to the “Catharsis MegaMall” of Vanilla Postal 3, in early concepts of the game it was known as either “HugeMart” or “LargeMart” and when making our second city map we decided to include it as HugeMart, this great big blue colossus was added to its top left corner, but at the time it didn’t have an interior to go with it.

The first attempt to produce one was in 2017, when the mod was still very much in its infancy, after a mapper was assigned to the job 4 months passed, very little was produced and the mapper left the team, HugeMart was mostly forgotten about after that.

In 2019 we planned to revisit the area and produce a second version of the map but once again, this time because the mapper assigned to the job was also working on another area at the same time, the Paradise Dream Bridge which now serves as the game’s tutorial. A year later in 2020 versions of HugeMart and the Bridge were delivered, the Bridge was in a solid, mostly finished state, HugeMart…

Old HugeMart 1

Old HugeMart 2

Old HugeMart 3

Well, as you can see, not so much. The map was a colossal unfinished mess and absolutely not something we could connect up to the open world, everything was empty, walls were missing and it didn’t match the exterior at all, rather than try to salvage the map we scrapped this version and went back to the drawing board.

A few months later and alongside a myriad of other mapping projects, HugeMart 3.0 was underway, taking inspiration from both POSTAL 1’s general store type map, EZ Mart, and the brand store based shopping centre of POSTAL 2, the Paradise Mall.

A bunch of new signage was made for the building, the stores were built and in a fairly short amount of time we had something we were comfortable with, so much so that we made public showcases of the map for the first time (see these 2 articles).

Back then there were still a bunch of flaws with the map, lots of empty space and the stores were all shuttered, they weren’t actually enterable, but the map was in a far, far better state than either of our previous 2 attempts and we felt confident enough to connect it to the open world, adding level transitions linking the HugeMart interior map with its exterior in City02, known in the world as the Industrial Estates.

Throughout the rest of 2020 the map received addition after addition to make it feel more lively, with extra posters and adverts made, stores opened up and a secret area added, we also populated the map with NPCs and introduced the Private Security guards, the reskinned Cops who patrol many of our interior maps, this improved version of HugeMart later appeared in our 6th and 7th Demo Trailers.

However, the map wasn’t done, there were still issues to resolve but for most of 2021 and 2022 our priorities were elsewhere and so HugeMart was once again left by the wayside.

But not anymore, in late 2022 we got back to work with the map and addressed some key issues it still had.

Expanding the Map

The first of these was the layout, while it did reflect the exterior of the building much better than previous attempts, there were still problems.

Missing Interior HugeMart

What you see lined out in red in this image is an empty space, which if you look at the exterior of the building:

HugeMart Exterior

Should have been filled. The Brand Stores area of the map, based on the Paradise Mall was essentially tucked away to the side even though it should’ve filled out half the map, about as much as the General Store area of the map, the part based on EZ Mart, which you can see at the bottom.

Another issue with this layout was that there was only one route between the Brand and General Store sections of the map, which meant that if you wanted to explore the Brand Stores the only way to leave after you were done was to backtrack, something we were not fans of, expanding into this missing area allowed us to solve both of these problems.

HM Plan

Essentially, we would build a new corridor on the right hand side similar to the one on the left, connect the 2 corridors together and also link the right corridor with some of the stores and the General Store area, this filled up the missing space and also allowed the player to backtrack out of the Brand Stores section of the map in multiple ways, making the layout more interesting to explore.

New HM corridor

Repurposing the “General Store”

The next thing we decided to tackle after expanding the map was the whole dynamic of splitting the map between the General Store and the Brand Stores: The General Store and the Brand Stores worked differently, in the General Store you would pick up items and then bring them to the checkout at the start of the map to pay, while in the Brand Stores you would pay at an in-store checkout, at least that’s how it worked in theory, we only ever made serious plans to implement vendors in the Brand Stores section.

Really, this dynamic was just our attempt to pay homage to both POSTAL 1 and POSTAL 2 in a single map, but the logic behind this split between the map’s areas didn’t make much sense, when we first showcased the map internally it was criticised for this issue, we put up signs on the doorway connecting the two halves of the map explaining their differences to try and ground the dynamic in some in-universe logic, but other than that we left things as they were.

This time, we wanted to properly tackle the issue and come up with something new, so our wonky tribute to POSTAL 1 was axed and we repurposed the area, to do this we looked to the Postal 3 Concept Art for reference and found something very useful, a concept for a garden centre that seemed to be a similar size to the space we were using for our General Store.

Garden Centre Concept

Bingo! That solved the problem. Instead of this weird General Store/Brand Store dynamic this whole General Store area became its own brand store, a great big garden centre, much less confusing and something closer to what the team at TM/Akella were thinking of while making the game.

CR GardenCenter

What’s left to-do

Does this mean the map is finished now? Unfortunately, still the answer is no. We’re much happier with the state of the area now but there are a few finishing touches to make, those touches being the vendors.

Why aren’t they in their stores yet? You might ask, well the answer is we still need to figure some things out for them. Firstly, the themes of some of the stores don’t fit our existing inventory items, so we have to either add new items to the game or rebrand the stores (we ideally want to go with the first option), we also need to find voice actors who will record all the dialogue for these characters, and lastly they need to be designed visually, in other words we need to pick out which civilian models we will retexture to become the vendors.

Whether that’s something for the Demo or not is an open question, if the vendors aren’t finished by the time we want to see a Demo release we can always put some sort of “Not Open til Later” type signs around the stores to “justify” it, there’s still a reason to explore the map without the stores being open since there’s a secret area to find and some weapons and items to pick up, but of course we’d much rather add in the vendors before release, let’s see how that goes.

And that’s the story of how after 5 years, HugeMart was (almost) finished!

Nav Mesh Improvements

Alongside our work prompting NPCs to get rid of obstacles in their way, we’ve also improved the nav meshes of maps to help them avoid running into these obstacles in the first place.

What is a nav mesh, you might ask? Well, the nav mesh is essentially the data that tells NPCs how to move through maps, without it they will have little to no idea what to do when it comes to pathfinding and will often slam into walls, props or other obstacles and get themselves stuck, a poorly made nav mesh will often lead to the same result.

Nav meshes can be generated automatically using console commands, but these auto generated meshes are often poor quality, marking areas containing unmovable props as accessible, marking areas containing no obstacles as inaccessible, that kind of thing, thankfully these meshes can be manually corrected and we’ve put a lot of time into doing so, meaning NPCs should now be able to move about our maps much better than before, this won’t fix all navigation issues, but a healthy amount of them.

- The Manual:

Moving away from mapping and on to writing, here’s a subject we haven’t really discussed before, the manual!

Recently we’ve been putting some time into making what we call the “Catharsis Reborn Destruction Manual”, this is a manual that has existed for the mod since fairly early in development, but it wasn’t routinely updated and was mostly forgotten about until recently.

In late 2022 this manual was resurrected and made fully up to date with the latest version of the mod, we will likely release a version of it with the Demo and then update it further for a full game build.

The current manual is designed to be a fairly simple guide to the basics of the mod covering the following:

  • A short introduction to the mod
  • Explaining the game’s basic default controls
  • Info on how to navigate the menus
  • Explaining how the HUD works
  • How to recognise certain markers (for level transitions and mission objectives)
  • Describing the game’s weapons and items
  • A few suggestions on what to do while exploring the city
  • Contact info

Along with this there are also a bunch of relevant gameplay tips on things like lesser known ways to use weapons (for example, did you know you can turn the Shop Vac into a makeshift Grenade Launcher?) included throughout, there will be a lot that players have to figure out on their own (as it should be) but this manual will serve as a short starting guide for those interested.

How we distribute this manual is something we still need to decide on, currently it exists in Google Doc form as it is edited but most likely it will receive a release as a PDF included in the game files, for easy access and readability.

Older Additions

As with the previous devblog, we have a section related to things we worked on previously that we forgot to mention, this time it’s a short one, with only one point to include:

- Flashing Pickups:

This was an addition from early 2022 that should’ve gotten a mention in the previous devblog, but by the time we remembered it was something worth talking about the devblog had already been published, oh well.

In POSTAL 2 the weapon, ammo and item pickups had a kind of pulse effect on them where they would flash and then go back to normal, this was added to make them stand out against other props and objects.

It’s a feature that didn’t make it into Vanilla Postal 3, Trashmasters actually implemented it into the game but then scrapped it before release for some reason, so we restored it. Given that CR has much more of a focus on its pickups than Postal 3, with inventory items being dotted around the maps along with the typical weapon pickups, being able to identify what is and isn’t a pickup is important, this feature really helps with that.

Bug Fixes

One of the first things we worked on fixing after the devblog was the game’s “hint nodes”, a hint node is essentially a marker that tells an NPC they have something to interact with, for example if we put it by a garbage can they might drop some litter there, if we put it by an ATM they might go up and kick it, that kind of thing.

But the problem we had was that NPCs became obsessed with them, they would lock on to a node and keep interacting with it constantly, so you would get for example, a terminal litterer who would stand by a bin and drop trash next to it for all eternity, not fun.

To fix this we added a timer system where NPCs wouldn’t be able to use the same node again until an interval had passed, we also made it so nodes being interacted with would be “locked”, meaning other NPCs would not go near them, when in use and become unlocked when the interaction was finished, the result is a more lively feeling for the city as NPCs go about their day interacting with these little prompts as intended.

Another major series of bugs we faced was with our alternate ammo type implementation, as it caused way too many bugs with regular ammo pickups, such as making them give the player too much ammo, making them take ammo away from the player when collected, or even give them infinite ammo if you picked up too many! A lot of work had to go into making it work as intended consistently.

The addition of various improvements to the NPCs also caused havoc as well, with issues like Cops trying to bag non existent limbs (causing crashes), bagging the wrong objects or not investigating things properly, popping up repeatedly, we also had to fix bugs related to the cats, where the game would keep forgetting aspects about them (which texture variant they were using, whether they were the dervish or regular variant) after a level transition.

These things never really like to work without complications the first time round, do they? That’s game development for you.

The Future

With Source mods a pace of spending many years of development is in a way a norm, of course the most well known example is Black Mesa, which took 15 years to be finished, and more recently you can look at G-String which has been in the works for 16, it seems that when working on Source mods you end up falling out of regular time and into Valve time.

But then this isn’t just a Source thing, a fellow Postal 3 themed total conversion project which you have most likely heard of, Postal 3 Unreal, has actually been in development for around 2 years more than Catharsis Reborn.

The difference between our mod and these examples though, is that they all have playable releases of some kind, Black Mesa and G-String are out on the Steam Store (and before that they had beta or demo builds), and P3U has a Demo on the Workshop, while for Catharsis Reborn this isn’t the case, the majority of people who know of our project have only seen it through screenshots or trailer videos and these are only snapshots of gameplay, they don’t tell you what the experience will actually be like.

In the previous devblog we mentioned our plan to remedy this, with a kind of closed testing session that could then be followed by a public release, as per usual we’re not making any promises, but we do feel that we’re drifting closer to a point where we could carry out this kind of closed test.

We’ve already planned out an applications process we can put into practice when the tester phase is announced, and it will be similar to the applications process for joining the team as a developer, where applicants will talk about any past experience they have and why they would be interested in the role, we will give the tester applications their own channel though in order to differentiate between applicants for the Developer Team and the QA Team.

Of course the main factor on applications will be whether the applicant wants to be a tester, committed to helping us root out bugs and giving regular feedback on game feel we can work with, or if they just want to play the mod.

Because as much as we understand that many people just want to give CR a try, that’s not what the testing process is for, being a game tester and being an ordinary player are 2 very different things.

With the updates detailed in this blog, we’ve completed all of the big features and programming tasks we were aiming for over the past year or so, there are still things we have in mind to work on, but these are all unnecessary features or quality of life stuff, so our current plan is this, because so much of our work process lately has focused on prioritisation we’ve decided that for the next few months development will enter an “open season” phase when it comes to programming, this essentially means that developers will get a break from more directed, focused work and will have the opportunity work on whatever they feel like working on, whether that’s a major features or mundane additions, we will keep posting updates during this period and let people know what content is being worked on, but just keep in mind that a lot of this won’t be necessary or even that important to advancing the release of the Demo.

After this “open season” period, we will address several remaining tasks we call “must-do” tasks, things that must be fixed before any kind of release outside the development team, these include fixing various UI bugs, implementing some missing dialogue, fixing issues related to the game’s chapter select and polishing the files to remove certain assets not planned to appear in the Demo, once this process is complete we can move into the closed testing period, address issues brought up during tester feedback, and then implement a public release.

This still raises the question of whether the public version will be a 2 mission Demo (the Bridge Prologue and the first mission of Monday) or a whole day Demo (Bridge Prologue + All Monday Missions), currently the game still only contains these 2 missions, but it's possible for us to do a Monday Demo as well, Monday as planned will have 3 missions, the first of which already exists, the second of which already has all its dialogue recorded, the third has only partially been recorded.

Since we completed the Bridge Prologue and the first Monday Mission we have not worked on missions further, focusing instead on maps, mechanics and the like, but to pick up where we left off would likely not be too difficult, in terms of assets the completed assets for all 3 Monday missions are the maps, and the missing assets are:

  • Textures for the enemy faction, cutscene art assets, completed cutscenes (Mission 2)
  • Cutscene art assets, cutscene audio assets, completed cutscenes (Mission 3)

The enemy textures can be worked on once we clear our backlog of existing art assets to finish, which is a process we’ve mostly almost completed, so the main sticking point is recording all the dialogue for the cutscenes, and then completing them, how long this takes depends on how much time we want to invest in the visuals of the cutscenes and if we can find fitting voice actors in good time.

Our ideal is of course to release the full Monday demo, to give players more content that will help with the frustration of having to wait so long for a release, but if it appears to be too time consuming to add all the Monday content at a reasonable pace, we will likely release as a 2 mission Demo instead, so this all depends on how development progresses in future, either way we will keep the community up to date on our plans through devblogs like these.


So that’s it for today’s devblog, it was supposed to be our last blog of 2022 but instead it's our first blog of 2023, funny how these things work out.

The main reason this blog took longer to be finished than expected was the NPC Upgrades, which ballooned into feature creep as they were being worked on.

For example, here is the initial plan we had for improving animals as part of the NPC improvements:

Animals Before

And here is the plan once it started to be worked on:

Animals After

With each of the tasks we set out to do for our NPC improvements, dozens of sub-tasks sprouted from them and this was accommodated for because ultimately, the more we do to improve and add to our NPCs, the more alive the world of Catharsis we are building will feel, and that’s an aspect which we think is very important for the mod.

But more features meant more jobs to do, more bugs to fix, and a stalling in our ambition to release devblog updates more regularly, once again leading to a radio silence we would rather have avoided.

In other words, we just got a bit carried away, sorry about that, but the plus side is we can release a devblog even more substantial than the last one, we noted in Devblog 5’s conclusion that it was the equivalent of 15 pages worth of writing, this one is the equivalent of 20, so evidently we’ve been busy!

In order to ensure there wasn’t any further delay in getting this devblog out we decided that we wouldn’t release a trailer to go with it, we will still work on trailers in the future, but only when we have a very large body of content to show, possibly after several devblogs have been released, 2 or 3, rather than every devblog having a trailer to accompany it.

We’re also writing devblogs in a new way, starting with this one, previously when the time came to write a devblog we would have to go back over all the features added since the previous one and start listing them, in a rather time consuming process, now instead we will start writing the next devblog as soon as the one before it is released, new features are written about more or less right after they’re added and this process continues until we feel it’s time to release a new update, this should mean that in the future devblogs will have more complete info, as there’s not much of a risk of something new being forgotten about and left unmentioned.

Lastly, we’d like you to let us know what you think of the devblog length, should we release these blogs more often, meaning shorter posts with shorter update lists, or hold off until great amounts of progress have been made and present this progress all in one post, as we’ve done with these past 2 devblogs? We’d be interested to know how often you in the community feel updates should be posted, and feedback we receive will be taken into account when we work in future devblogs.

That being said, that’s all the news we have for now, so to close off we’d like to thank you for your interest in our work and wish you good luck with 2023, until next time!

CR Devblog #5: A Big Showcase

CR Devblog #5: A Big Showcase

Catharsis Reborn 8 comments

An extra-long update on the progress of Catharsis Reborn.

P3A and a confession...

P3A and a confession...

Postal 3 Amnesia 2 comments

Postal 3 Amnesia was very ambicious and me NEXER the lead developer did everything wrong.

CR Devblog #4: Happy Anniversary to Postal 3!

CR Devblog #4: Happy Anniversary to Postal 3!

Catharsis Reborn 5 comments

A CR Update from the team at WJ for Postal 3's 10th Anniversary.

Controlled by POSTAL - Second Steps Update

Controlled by POSTAL - Second Steps Update

Controlled by POSTAL 3 comments

New info update for the mod. New state, new weapons, and pretty nice cameo.

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Comments  (0 - 10 of 23)

You know, RWS does still have the source code and the only reason they haven't fixed it is because it's in Russian.
So theoretically, if you had a team willing to work on the game, fix the bugs and balance it all out (of which there are at least two that I know of) and at least one or more Russian coders (and I'm sure there must be some around) then maybe, just maybe, RWS could be persuaded to let a hypothetical dev team have a crack at fixing that S.O.B.

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I am trying to learn russian to fix the code but i dont have it

Reply Good karma Bad karma+1 vote

That's not true, the source code is not in Russian, but there are already teams working on revisiting Postal 3 unofficially

RWS absolutely hate the game, so they're not going to officially sponsor projects related to P3

Reply Good karma Bad karma+1 vote

Rest in ****


Due to the DRM being broken for about 9 years (as right when Windows 8.1 came out which broke them unless you have to install the patch manually).

Reply Good karma Bad karma+1 vote

como se arregla el problema de lanzar cosas ! se crashea si tiras granada o algun otro articulo

Reply Good karma Bad karma0 votes

Install the No-DRM fix. Verify integrity of game files through Steam. Play. In that order.

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according to that Guest user said that the grenade crashes the game, this issues is common and according on PCGamingWiki, it's only happen on NODRM fix, this has been finally fixed with that P3 Sourcemod template which includes the fix:

and even with that, that wasn't enough as Postal 3 can crashes easily in some other ways, and theres no way to fully fix that issues without access to the game source code or reverse engineering it, RWS may have the source code but its likely written in Russian, and they (probably) don't want to translate the comments written on the code as it's costing them lots of time and money, resources so they decided to gave up to going back to Postal 2 to creating Paradise Lost.

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so sad this game was turned to ****. I'm glad to see that people are recreating it though. :/

Reply Good karma Bad karma+4 votes

Please, someone create a mod to correct all the bad **** in this game

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Postal 2 the best...

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