UPDATE: Beta is now available for download! Head over to my downloads page, and make sure to report any bugs!
As some of you all may have noticed, I have taken a bit of a sabbatical from modding. I am happy to say that now that summer is here, I'm back to work, and it's time to start expecting some new updates.
The next release of UnitPort, v0.3.0, will move the addon from alpha to beta phase. To give you a vague idea of what this means, exactly, I will put it in these terms (which I find just as amusing as they are accurate): Alpha = Build Up, Beta = Clean Up, Final Release = Give Up. Anyway, the point is that there won't be so much new content anymore as there will be polishing things up. This being said, this is what to expect in the next UnitPort release:
1. A new diplomacy UI, allowing players to make and break alliances. No one is safe anymore...
2. Add some final units. Just because new content won't be focused on doesn't mean that there will never be any new content again. In 0.3.0, some units will be added, and some will be deleted.
3. A general balance pass will be done over all units in the game. This is nothing final, but it will create an outline for what the game will look like. As of now, the plan is to spread out the techs even more, making some techs (aka tech 2) actually worthwhile to focus on and making experimentals more elite and rare on the battlefield than they currently are. Note that, despite these changes, the revamp balance mod will still be almost essential for normal balance.
4. Add in regeneration for all units. I can't go much farther with that one...
5. Fix all the bugs I can find. Duh. The question is not if there are bugs, but where the bugs are.
6. Add tarmacs for all structures. For those of you that don't know, tarmacs are the textures that appear under each structure and look something like concrete. Most unitport structures do not currently have tarmacs.
7. Update the restrictions. Now, I don't encourage playing with restrictions (as you're only limiting your skill at the game when you do), but for those that like to anyway, you will be happy to know that it's finally time to actually make the restrictions work.
8. Descriptions of all unitport units will appear in the Unit Wiki. This takes a LOT longer than you would think, and I a significant accomplishment.
9. Add new advice tidbits for the loading screen. Most supcom2 players don't need to be reminded that experimentals are powerful, and don't particularly care who Brackman is. ("Oh, yes." some of you are saying.) New advice will be added that will, at least, assist new UP players in getting used to the mod and/or help them learn something.
10. Fix up the research tree. If you're looking for a whole new format, you're going to be disappointed. By "fix up", I mean "move around techs that are in the wrong spot".
11. Add in a mysterious new UI which will remain a surprise until release. Mwuhahaha.
Now, most of you probably just skipped all the numbers and are looking for that proposed release date. Well, here it is: my goal is to be finished by the end of July. Yeah, yeah, that may not be as close as I implied, but one must understand that all of those bullets that I'm sure you just read will take a long time to pin down. The balance alone -- even just an initial pass like this -- is a huge task because I have to look at EVERY unit. You all have been quite patient the last few months waiting for a release (or maybe no one cares...but let's not think about that possibility). Wait just a bit more, and you'll be rewarded.
Feel free to PM me or post on the mod thread (or, for that matter, right on this letter/article) with any questions about beta, though I won't guarantee any answers. If you have a crash question/installation problem, then you're NOT going to post here, but scroll up, click on "tutorials" under and to the right of my name, and read the entire crash EAQ.
Make sure to stay posted for future updates about the upcoming release.