In this second dev diary we ask for some fan input and finish off importing all the new C&C unit graphics for the Civilization 2 - Command & Conquer African Campaign Scenario!
While working with Metropolis on the Civilization 2 - Heroes of Might and Magic 2 Mod I started thinking about how cool it would be to play a dark and moody C&C style Civ2 scenario as I'm a huge Command & Conquer fan (so much that I run a retro C&C tribute website) and particularly love the dark and moody world of C&C2 Tiberian Sun. Both games use 2.5D isometric graphics that might allow for not too difficult graphic conversions too. So I started looking around to see if anyone had made any C&C scenarios for Civ2 and sure enough someone had! A CivFinactics user named Wonx2150 had created an old Command & Conquer scenario for Civ2 that contained some custom terrain and units. I was particularly impressed with his Africa map which recreates NODs Africa campaign in C&C1 but it also included some C&C2 sequel units making it a sort of hybrid scenario. Unfortunately the scenario was still very Civ2 looking and little bits of custom graphics here and there were nothing amazing so I decided to make a special remastered version (with Wonx2150's permission) of the scenario using as much imported authentic C&C2 and C&C1 graphics as I could! I've also been dreaming up a rather complicated and difficult Civilization 2 - Red Alert 2 Siege of New York scenario so I figured this project would be a good training exercise in preparation for the big one! It's 20 years too late but I'm doing it anyway haha!
Viewers of the previous dev diary 1 will know that I've been importing new enhanced unit graphics into this enhanced remaster of Wonx2150's C&C scenario and things have been going well, however one of these units has creates a question...
To cloak or not to cloak...?
The NOD Stealth Tank spends most of its time cloaked in C&C until it attacks. Civ2 doesn't support any sort of unit transparency so all I can think of is a chequered effect. However with so few pixels in the model you lose a lot of identity and detail. But when on standard zoom your eyes do seem to 'connect the dots' and create a not too bad cloaking effect. So which one I should go with folks?
In-Game - Standard 1:1 pixel zoom:
So far the feedback/votes I've already received elsewhere on forums is for Cloaked! So I've gone with that for now. However I've stuck the uncloaked version in a unused area of the units file to easily swap it back in if more people prefer it.
So stealth tank vote aside I'm pleased to announce all unit and terrain graphics have been finished now which was definitely the hardest part. Now I just need to sort out the city buildings, extra bonus graphical changes and re-balancing all the units Attack & Defenses as some of Wonx's original units are pretty unbalanced.
Here's a shot of all my finished unit graphics in-game! Those with a keen eye will also notice that I've now replaced all Civ2 special resources with C&C2 decorations (+Red alert mines) too. :)
And finally here's a more detailed breakdown of the unit changes and additions I've made to Wonx's scenario. Obviously Wonx's original units were more Civ2 style with C&C repaints, whereas as previous discussed in Dev Diary 1 mine are taken directly from C&C games and mods to create a more authentic C&C feel (but still with some repaints to fit into Civ2 better). I plan to do something similar with my Red Alert 2 scenario units too. As previously mentioned Wonx's scenario is a sort of hybrid C&C1 and C&C2 scenario as it set during the C&C1 Africa Campaign however it features some C&C2 units. I thought it would be fun to continue that theme since C&C2 is of course an isometric 2.5D game like Civ2 which makes asset conversion much easier haha. I still wanted to include as many C&C1 units when possible however C&C1 units are mostly 2D top down and are often too low res even for Civ2 lol so that is why I used units (with permission) from cool C&C2 mods like Crystallized Doom and Twisted Insurrection , along with the Red Alert 2 Mental Omega mod as they include lots of cool remade higher res 2.5D C&C1 units.