1946. Mankind has just suffered one of the most brutal wars it ever faced. While the rest of the world is still rebuilding, a scientist of unmatched genius by the name of Albert Einstein decides to act. With a device he was engineering at a secret research center in Trinity, New Mexico, he travels back in time to kill the person who he sees as the root of all misery: Adolf Hitler. He catches up with Hitler in 1926 and disposes of him without thoroughly considering the consequences, as time will soon tell.

It's now the 1950s. World War II never happened -- at least, not yet. Germany remains a peace-loving country with close ties to other European nations, now facing increased tensions with Russia under Josef Stalin's rule. In order to realize the glorious Marxist dream he has envisioned, Stalin mobilizes the forces of the USSR. His goal? The conquest of Europe. The nations under threat form the Alliance that seeks to put an end to this madman's nightmare before he can see to its completion. The Great World War II has begun.

  • Steamroll over Europe with the high-powered arsenal of the Soviets or repel the invasion with the technological superiority and cunning of the Allied Forces in a team-based FPS inspired by Westwood Studios' hit real-time strategy game, C&C Red Alert.
  • Wage warfare on the land and in air with units ranging from Mammoth Tanks and Chinooks to Phase Tanks and Longbows.
  • Pacifist? Repair your base as an Engineer, support the war effort as a Medic or Mechanic, or infiltrate the enemy stronghold and steal intelligence or assets with Spies and Thieves.
  • Classic C&C economy management comes into play, giving players the choice on what character classes and military hardware they want to bring to the fight. Early infantry skirmishes give way to full combined-arms conflict, with high-tech war vehicles including the stealthy Phase Tank, nuclear Demolition Truck, and high-voltage Tesla Tank!




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Red Alert: A Path Beyond Dev. Blog


APB update coming soon! In the meantime, have a dev blog of the latest changes that will be implemented.

Water Effects Tweaked
Come on in! The water's fine! Water effects have been tweaked just a bit so that the blue fog/tint that normally only shows for submarines now shows for anything going underwater. Anything! Even those soldiers doomed to a watery grave... Good day for a swim still!

jGWQvzY.gif


Planes Free-look
Players love to fly our Yaks and MiGs. For our intrepid pilots, they will be glad to know that planes will now be able to free-look. This should offer better visibility when necessary and offer better scouting to report enemy movements back to your teammates. Remember that you can now type in team chat and global chat without fear of crashing or stalling out, thanks to previous improvements in our flying mechanics.

x1Nhf8Z.gif


New Unit Sounds
Before we get into what we have added, let's preface with something neat. For those who have been keeping up with Command & Conquer news, CCHyper, Nyerguds, Tore, TaxOwlBear and Chad1233 have shared Red Alert Beta with the community!

Click the image below to be directed to the Reddit thread celebrating this present to the C&C Community and all its full details.

ztjw5uaeckr31.png?width=


From the Beta, we have been able to make use of unheard voices for our units. Particularly, we have given our Thief new lines.


YOFy5g6.png Allied Thief
“Like candy from a baby.”
“Let’s pick ‘em clean.”
“Time for a little five-finger discount!”.

Players should know however, that you will only hear these lines when you are actually in range to steal. Good luck to those brave infiltrators! May you make a clean getaway after the Soviets hear "Credits Stolen".

Additionally, we have added another line to our generic Allied infantry.

h18YOGI.gif Generic Infantry
"It is done."

Perceptive listeners may have previously heard these lines in Counterstrike's Radio 2 Remix, during the vocal break in the track. Before CCHyper and Co.'s delivery of this build, these voice lines were not isolated from the track nor found anywhere in the game files. With the release, we are fortunate to now be able to add finer details such as these to A Path Beyond.

Battlefield Unit Reference
Players familiar with Renegade's menu may recall the EVA Data Link that included the map, objectives, and data for your campaign missions. Players may also recall there was a tab for Characters, Weapons, Vehicles, and Buildings. What we are excited to unveil is the Battlefield Unit Reference for our APB units!

eCzWFfX.png


Thanks to CMDBob, we can now offer this useful resource to players new and old. Pushwall is adding the models and unit descriptions and will ship this out with the next APB update! As you may guess, there is much to fill out. We have barely scratched the Characters tab after all!


And that concludes this dev update for APB! However, there is much more to show! Dghelneshi, our scripts and coding wizzard, would like to show you the following...


Dynamic Lighting Improvements

The way lights were handled in W3D has been a thorn in my side for a while so I recently decided to tackle that problem. Especially spot lights were basically unusable (not a single one is presently used in any 5.0 project) due to various shortcomings both in the engine and the editor.

To be clear, I'm almost exclusively talking about how light interacts with dynamic/moving objects, not about the baked vertex lighting for static meshes ("light solve"). The latter is not easy to replace at a reasonable performance cost despite how terrible it looks, so I'm leaving that for the future. I'm also slightly misusing the term "Dynamic Lighting" to mean static lights illuminating moving geometry. We do not have moving lights in W3D.

Lighting in W3D
The most egregious problem was that most of lighting calculations were done on a per-object basis, at the center point of the model. For example, the incoming light direction was calculated once for each mesh and thus every light was effectively treated as a directional light (infinitely far away) in the pixel shader. This means that there was no smooth distance falloff (attenuation) for the light across a larger object. The only thing that was considered per-pixel was the angle between the mesh normal and the incoming light direction.

You can clearly see the jarring visuals this can create in the screenshot below (walls are usually not lit as dynamic meshes, but they demonstrate the issues quite well):

BtxW6Kv.png


The wall in front is lit by a red spot light, while the back wall is lit by a white point light. There are horrible discontinuities in the lighting across the three wall segments, and the leftmost segment in the front doesn't receive any lighting because its center point is not within the maximum attenuation radius of the light. Furthermore, the tree to the right is fully lit up despite only grazing the red spot light cone (the cone visualization is also new) because it is still only checked aginst the radius, not against the actual cone.

The latter is not just a minor visual problem since we can only have a maximum of four lights processed per object (for performance reasons), so if there are multiple spot lights close to each other with non-overlapping cones, but overlapping spheres according to their attenuation radius, the game might have a difficult time picking the lights that contribute the most light to this mesh, leading to annoying situations where lights suddenly "pop up" or flicker when you're moving through the world.

This means we largely had to make two fundamental changes:

  1. Move the code that handles light attenuation from the CPU side to the GPU pixel shader and pass all the relevant information along (light position instead of direction, inner and outer attenuation radius, etc.).
  2. Improve the light culling code so that it can more accurately predict how much a light would contribute to the resulting illumination of a given mesh.

New Changes
#1 was mostly straightforward, modern GPU shader code is quite flexible and the worst case performance impact was below 10%. The overall behavior of lights was kept close to what it was before in order to not force the project developers to relight all of their maps.

#2 required adjusting the code to work with the bounding boxes and spheres of the objects instead of just the center point. Every model now first checks its (axis-aligned) bounding box against the bounding box of the light (hierarchically using an AABB tree), then its box against the light sphere and for spot lights it also calculates the intersection of its bounding sphere with the spot cone (box vs cone is much more complicated and costly).

The picture below shows the sphere vs cone test in action, with various colors representing the different individual tests that are performed in that function (you may notice the cone visualization now has a proper spherical cap instead of just a circular base).

y6Q5nrt.png


If all of these tests succeed, we try to approximate the potential contribution of this light by doing the same light calculations that would now normally happen GPU-side and per-pixel at the center point and the eight corners of the bounding box of the object and averaging them. This kind of code needs to exist for light solve anyways. If more than four lights pass the intersection tests, we use the approximate contribution to (hopefully!) pick the four visually most important lights. If we don't additionally use the corners for the approximation, we can run into problems where the light is considered for inclusion, but displaced by other nearby lights that visually contribute less in the end. I'm still not happy with this result but for now I can't think of anything better that isn't even more expensive.

The two screenshots below illustrate the "popping" behavior that can happen if light culling isn't picking the most important lights correctly.

pDYygkw.png


8aqAyAX.png


During the course of development, a few smaller changes were made to improve various aspects of lighting:

  • Accurate visualization for the spot light cone instead of just a sphere like for point lights
  • Numerous types of objects that don't actually use any dynamic lighting now don't unnecessarily have their light environment calculated as per the description above
  • The rotation controls in Mammoth were actually broken in a few ways, this has been fixed.
  • Light attenuation has been changed to a quadratic falloff instead of linear (between inner and outer radius), for a smoother appearance without changing the overall look too much
    • I considered using a more physically accurate attenuation model, but decided against it since that would make the light's maximum influence radius bigger (potentially forcing a higher light limit per object) and the results would look so different that all lighting would have to be redone across all of our 5.0 projects.
  • Added inner cone angle setting to spot lights, replaces "spot exponent", which was completely unused anyways.
  • Light solve and approximate light contribution now use the same code instead of there being two functions that even slightly disagreed with each other (e.g. spot light direction was not consistent between static and dynamic lighting, which is yet another reason why they were not used at all)
  • Small changes to specular lighting shader code

After all of this work, the scene from the first screenshot now looks like this:

wYvyaUs.png


Aaaahhhh... Much better!

[Bonus Round]

Actual Dynamic Lighting

Since I was already working with the lighting code, I decided to disable light solve and quickly hack two moving lights onto a vehicle just to see how well it would work. I had to increase the maximum number of lights per mesh to 64 to make it even remotely viable, despite this being a very small map (still not quite enough for the gigantic terrain mesh, which touches every light on the entire map...). This made the game run at barely 60fps on a GTX 1070 and a small empty map, so please don't expect anything to actually come out of this any time soon. It was just a test, this is not a feature announcement. Various things in the engine would have to be fundamentally restructured to make this even halfway realistic in terms of performance.


Light Solve and Transparency

A small change to light solve makes it actually shine light through transparent objects like windows (though it effectively just ignores them instead of doing any fancy light transmission calculations since we can't easily sample textures on the CPU...). The screenshot below shows a test scene where I just deleted all lights inside the APB war factory on Guard Duty and only let it be illuminated by the sun shining through the windows. I wouldn't quite call it "pretty" due to the lack of bounce lighting and the usual issues with vertex lighting, but I would say it's at least somewhat interesting to look at. I pushed the light solve change out to the main branch and so far nobody has screamed at me yet.

gRIlAAW.png


APB 3.3.0.0 Update

APB 3.3.0.0 Update

News 2 comments

MASSIVE APB UPDATE! New HUD, new flamethrower, new boats, MiGs and Cruisers ingame, many performance issues squashed, and SO, SO MUCH MORE! Read the full...

Air & Naval Update!

Air & Naval Update!

News 4 comments

Check out this sneak peak to see what we have in store for our next patch!

Red Alert: A Path Beyond MiG-29 Update

Red Alert: A Path Beyond MiG-29 Update

News 8 comments

Another update on the Soviet MiG-29! Our lead texture artist has been hard at work adding detail to the model!

Red Alert: A Path Beyond 3.2.4.0 Changelog

Red Alert: A Path Beyond 3.2.4.0 Changelog

News

A lot of balance changes in this new update, along with the addition of the Chrono Tank!

Add file RSS Files
BHP Launcher (OBSOLETE)

BHP Launcher (OBSOLETE)

Full Version 2 comments

ATTENTION: This download is obsolete, and APB will no longer be distributed on this platform. Use the w3dhub Launcher to download APB.

W3D Hub Launcher

W3D Hub Launcher

Installer Tool 15 comments

The W3D Hub launcher installs and manages all of the most popular mods for Command & Conquer Renegade. Providing game downloads and automatic updates...

APB Texture Pack v.2.0

APB Texture Pack v.2.0

A Patch Beyond Texture Pack Demo 2 comments

This is a demo of my mad texture pack.

LevelEdit Path

LevelEdit Path

SDK 1 comment

A simple utility that allows you to easily re-route your LevelEdit application to point to a new game source folder, without the hassle of using regedit.

Mapping & Mod SDK v2 - RA:APB Gamma

Mapping & Mod SDK v2 - RA:APB Gamma

SDK

Updated for RA:APB 2.1.2 content. Art source files, mapping tools, compile/decompile utilities, and documentation to get you started on creating your...

Obsolete - v 2.1.2 Mac Full Client - RA:APB Gamma

Obsolete - v 2.1.2 Mac Full Client - RA:APB Gamma

Full Version

(Obsolete) For Mac gamers, this is the RA:APB 2.1.2 full game client Wineskin. Thanks for Darklord42 once again for preparing this special wrapper for...

Comments  (0 - 10 of 1,790)
Guest
Guest

How do I add AI or bots?

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
[oO]
[oO]

I realize that I am a bit too late, but I assume some people may still wanna know it, hence why I'm writing for future:

Start a map, press ~ button and type BOTCOUNT [number of bots without [ ] signs]. Keep in mind, though, that many maps still don't support AI. The maps that support bots (according to the official site):
-Pipeline
-Rock Trap
-Metro (Not sure about this one. At least I remember something along the lines on old versions)
-Camos Canyon (also not too sure, but I think I was playing it with the AI). There may be other maps and I really wish team did PROPER information with maplist suitable for bots. At least because current online in the game is as dead as my sense of humor.

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FRAYDO Creator
FRAYDO

thank you [o0]! additionally, this feature has been extended now to online multiplayer -- our moderators can now enable bots on the server during low player counts

Reply Good karma+2 votes
Epsilon2
Epsilon2

From the looks of it you can add bots on every map but the ones [oO] mentioned are the ones bots act competently in, every other one they act dumb, game may also crash if bots are added in a map they are not designed for.

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elpinguinofrio
elpinguinofrio

I'm very confused. Where can I download the game?

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FRAYDO Creator
FRAYDO

link provided here for you and anyone else interested - W3dhub.com

Reply Good karma+2 votes
Noddynod443
Noddynod443

You need to download the W3D Hub Launcher, then download the game through that Launcher.

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stalkerforever
stalkerforever

It's insane how long you guys have been working on this, congratulations for not giving up. How complete/playable is it, are there people playing it online?

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FRAYDO Creator
FRAYDO

APB is fully playable and 99% complete. The 1% is maybe dogs? :v

people are playing online! activity tends to pick up over the weekend, although you can quickly summon a game via our Discord as well Discord.gg

Reply Good karma+2 votes
ThaneWulfgharn
ThaneWulfgharn

Hmm... Your renders are really high quality. Why don't you port to Renegade X? Sticking to the old Renegade engine is such a loss compared to your work (graphically speaking)

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Coolrock Creator
Coolrock

The team that is left working on the game don’t want to start from scratch again. They’re happy with the progress they’ve made over the years. We’re pushing to get the game to a point that feels complete. Not very many developers left!

Reply Good karma+3 votes
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Red Alert: A Path Beyond
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Highest Rated (10 agree) 10/10

i haven't even played it yet, but i still give 10!

Mar 14 2011 by KBraid

Style
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Red Alert: A Path Beyond
Red Alert: A Path Beyond First Person Shooter
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Our friends from around the C&C Community have come together to launch this new website, Cnc.community, w… T.co

17hours ago by w3dhub

Everyone is prolly having their own Remastered release parties but see, you want to join ours because we’re cool an… T.co

Jun 4 2020 by w3dhub

In case you missed the 14v14 APB action this past weekend, Aprime streamed his games! Join us this weekend too! Youtube.com

Jun 3 2020 by w3dhub

Fan submission! Check out MoltenJam's first video, APB Yak Training! Youtube.com

May 31 2020 by w3dhub

New Ground Zero blog! Our asset collection has grown and our first alpha has been shipped out to our testers. Read… T.co

May 30 2020 by w3dhub

It is with utmost regret that we must inform you that Tiberian Sun: Reborn has been removed from our launcher and t… T.co

May 26 2020 by w3dhub

For those of you on Windows 7 and experiencing technical issues with our W3D Hub Launcher, we have an easy fix. Thi… T.co

May 26 2020 by w3dhub

The BHP forums will be shut down by the end of June. If you require any data from them please contact a member of the staff team.

May 30 2016 by bhpteam

Red Alert: A Path Beyond is not over. Secure.w3dhub.com

Jan 13 2016 by bhpteam

We, as a team, all members past and present, would like to thank you for your endless support over the past 13 years.

Jan 10 2016 by bhpteam

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