Hello everybody. It's been a bit more than a week, but I have a title graphic I like and I don't want to change it. So welcome to this weekly bulletin! Motivation has been a factor in the slow update this week, but it hasn't been the only factor. The other factor has been that I've been doing a bunch of mapping, as has Morpher. So there's a bunch of mapping stuff to show off.
First though, here's a mockup of some terrain we've been working on. We've had tiles for these pieces in-game and functional for a long time, but this week I've been putting some effort into bringing them up to standard and fitting them in with the rest of the set:
These fit better with the rest of the city tiles. While on the subject of terrain I'll note that I've also been working on the interior tiles, but this week that mostly meant converting more of them into a game-readable format. There's nearly enough there to make it usable.
Mostly though, this week we've been making maps. I've been focusing on Singleplayer and Co-op stuff, and Morpher has been adding to our increasingly reasonable roster of Multiplayer maps.
This is DM: Uphill (2), a rainy, pine-clad slope littered with the ruins of past habitation. One player starts at the top of the hill, the other at the bottom. The roughness of the incline should make for some interesting sieges while also allowing for Nod's signature mobility.
He's also wrapped up work on another map, currently unnamed.
Resources at each player's starting location are slim, so rapid expansion is necessary to draw the game out. The canyons between each starting location are occasionally the sites of meteorite impacts, and ion storms sometimes roll across the entire map.
I've been doing layout for two more singleplayer focused maps. First, Lost Squad, which I've mentioned before in these bulletins, here. The mission follows a group of GDI commandos who become separated from their extraction point while in possession of some extremely sensitive information. They must hide from Nod as troops are scrambled to kill them, and must enlist the aid of the Forgotten to break through Nod's forces and reach the extraction point. Meanwhile, GDI forces are deployed to break through the very same Nod emplacements.
Previously I'd been working on the beach where GDI's forces are deployed. Now I've begun work on the ruins and wastelands into which the commando team is thrust.
This is an example of the environment behind Nod's lines. Further away from their fortifications the world becomes a lot more mutated.
And here is a small group of Nod units responding the GDI's presence on the beach:
So that's the co-op mission I've been working on. I've also been working on a small Nod mission for their main campaign. In early missions you are a lost people, alone in the desert. Much of Nod's technology has been lost as the minds behind it have died or aligned themselves to other splinters of the brotherhood.
Having evicted a group of scavengers from one of Cabal's Cores and cleared the area of berserk cyborgs, you must fortify the position and prepare for attack. The Fist of Nod, a traditionalist sect of the brotherhood, has become aware of your presence in their territory. It is unclear whether they aim to secure the core for themselves, or whether they simply want to kill you specifically. In either case, the core is of the utmost importance for reclaiming much of Nod's lost technology.
More on this one later perhaps. But as with a lot of singleplayer stuff, I don't want to give too much away.
Perhaps the most important change this week has been updates to the Tiberian Odyssey Client, which shares a lot in common with the launchers for CNCNet, Dawn of the Tiberium Age, and Twisted Insurrection. Now it shares a bunch more in common with better map previews and a dropdown box for gamemodes, eliminating the need to prefix every map with DM: or IW: or CTF: or whatever. Which is pretty sweet. The current art for this client is pretty rough so I won't show it off here (though I've started on giving it a nice new look).
Anyway, here's an image of the new map preview, which shows who is attached to which starting point and their colour. It's quite spiffy.
A massive thanks to Rampastring for making the client, and Bittah Commander for walking Morpher through its functionality. I'm going to assume most of you are already aware of their fantastic mod, DTA, but if you're not then you should definitely check it out!
And that's pretty much what we did this week.