Last week there was no update. As always, my apologies. Things have continued to occur, but it hasn't really been stuff that looks good in screenshots or which makes for particularly worthwhile discussion.
Morpher has been doing a bit of coding, and has overhauled the day/night lighting loop which he has been adding to most maps. I've been doing campaign mapping, but it's all in either so rough that it's not worth showing or so spoilery that I don't want to show it. SG SCIPCION has been working on some interesting new plant life, which will make some areas start to look a bit more alien and mutated. They're still work in progress, but there's some pretty interesting shapes and textures already coming along here.
Apart from a bit of mapping, I've been working on terrain a lot recently. So lets talk about terrain.
Specifically, lets talk about ice. Ice is pretty cool stuff in TS; heavy units will crack it as they travel over it, or just plain fall right through it if they're heavy enough. Weapons fire with break it too. It'll grow back over time as the water re-freezes. That adds a bunch of interesting opportunities by way of tactics.
The challenge is balancing it such that GDI doesn't have to invest in helipads early, taking up a lot of space and defining how they build their base for the remainder of the game. We also don't want snow maps to encourage too much hover vehicle spam, although the presence of hover vehicles in GDI's roster is a good way to offset the potential impact of ice-heavy maps. Ice should be tactically interesting to use, and Nod should be able to force GDI into having to cross it on occasion, but it shouldn't limit the toolkits of either faction in the process. All in all, it might take a bit of playtesting and iteration to get it right but it shouldn't be a big issue at all.
From a visual standpoint, the ice shores are pretty blocky. I've been working this week on making a set of ice shore tiles and this is a difficult thing to avoid. They're set up differently from the regular shore tiles at an engine level, and act more like terrain blends than shore pieces. smooth curves may be impossible, but at the very least I am rounding off the corners to make the set a little less jagged.
The other terrain thing I've been doing this week is an extension of some terrain stuff I've shown in the past. I've been blending the pavement cliffs to the earth tiles, and now I have both low and high versions of most of these blends. This is important for the process of porting the pavement cliffs into the snow theatre because I can now simply replace the dirt with snow. That ought to simplify the process.
Simplifying the process is good, because I am starting to get tired of staring at all these tiles in Photoshop.
Other things I've done since the last update include continuing to remake the temperate shores and creating a new set of tiberium. Though the former is incomplete and the latter is still a pixely mess.
And that's a lot of the things we did these past two weeks!