Half Life 2: Raising the Bar REDUX: Division 1.1 Update Article
Hi, everyone. In this update, we’re going to talk you through our huge list of changes for the 1.1 update for RTBR. We’ve spent the last three weeks patching, passing, and prototyping new features for the mod and facelifting existing features, and these are now ready for you to try out right now! If you’d like some more detail, take a look at the changelog below:
- Refined Gman, Consul, and Mossman materials – reducing phong in particular due to complaints about “plastic-like” light reflection
- Hi-def Gman face – previously using the low-resolution background G-Man facemap
- Refined bullsquid materials – Reduced sheen and iridescence to make it look less moist
- Improved medkit and suit battery textures – Consistency between medkits and facelift of old assets
- Fixed and improved Metrocop particles – Fixing particles leaving the stunstick during melee animations and adding some other particles in too
- Replacements for some Breen graffiti to be the Consul – consistency across design
- Revamped both charger materials – facelift of old materials using more advanced techniques
- Improved both charger animations – adjusting the older and less refined charger animations
- Improved cubemaps on the piston models – previously too shiny
- Improved soldier and elite soldier materials – reducing sheen to better reflect material of clothing
- Revamped teleport interior – facelifting very old and grim textures
- Remodelled Consul Statue – consistency with new consul model
- Fixed wonky cubemap in trainstation on AMD cards – old VTF version
- Fixed very minor material error with the revolver's materials – EOF keyname error throwing up meaningless but annoying errors in console
- Fixed cremator face textures – broken UVs before, now fixed on eyes and ‘snout’
- Fixed up some leak props – some texturing of props that only have UV lines for their textures, some alternate skins for more utility
- New weapon particle effects – for pistol, SMG, and revolver. Currently using same particle awaiting code changes to give each weapon a unique particle effect
- New combine radio sound – styled after the beta’s radio cut-off sound
- Fixed combine soldier, guard, cremator, and metrocop footstep sound effects – previously only made material walking sound, now makes gear movement sound effect. Guard has added beta sound effects for his thumping around. Cremator makes the walking sound effect from the beta
- Cremator has added idle sound effect – previously lacked one. Due to code setup using sentences, currently has some minor playback issues, but these will be recoded at a later time
- Redid the soundtrack for most maps – reorganised the soundtrack due to change in direction regarding the score for the mod. You can check out some of the new tracks over on our Soundcloud in the album Vector Error!
- Fixed critical crash between Lab01 and Industrial – previously was possible to skip the transition point, walk back into it, and crash the game
- Added moving pistons to Industrial – Previously the pistons in Stenographer’s chasm were static
- Initial pass of trainstation – Particularly the centre of the atrium, with minor lighting improvements elsewhere
- Initial pass of terminal – Mostly the buildings in the combine march area, and minor lighting and detail changes throughout
- Initial pass of free TVs – Replacing brush lampposts with models
- Initial pass of Industrial -Stenographer’s chasm improvements, and also changed progression post-zombie-warehouse so instead of a convenient vent it’s a corridor
- Initial pass of lab01 – Lighting changes in basement area
- Initial pass of lab02 – Changes to detailing in Kraken base and post-destruction lab
- Initial pass of construction01 – Some changes in the starting area for progression and minor visuals
- Initial pass of construction02 – Redesigning progression area with vent leading down to the basement area to be less gamey, small tweaks throughout
- Initial pass of arcade – Significant visual change in “combine basement” area
- Initial pass of underground – Reorganised lighting to better highlight progression path
- Initial pass of consulplaza01 – Small detail updates
- Initial pass of consulplaza02 – Small progression and detail updates
- Optimised a lot of files for overall mod file size (about 200 MB) – Downscaling a lot of textures that didn’t need to be in 2k down to 1k, removal of some unused/duplicate files
- Menu background art – Drawn up by Allessandro (concept artist on the team) – replaces gaussian-blurred fade-in for loading. This’ll be used going forwards for future chapter backgrounds
- New intro video – More to-the-point intro video, will also be used for future YouTube video
- Removed bonus map selection screen – Leftover feature from internal builds that use this menu for easy access to zoo maps and the like
- Reorganised file name convention from playtest to release – No physical change as the name had nothing to do with the contents (it was the most tested and refined build after two months of testing, not just the build that was given to playtesters originally), but worth clearing up anyway
- Divided up the mod’s maps better – A new menu chapter now begins later in the mod so people can choose to begin at G-Man, at Trainstation01, or at Construction01 to skip narrative altogether. Chapter One release is being named to Division One – “Division” essentially meaning “Part” in this case, and smaller chapters will be within each Division.
- Menu colour scheme and elements have been adjusted to recreate old steam UI schema – A small visual change in menus and loading screens to improve immersion
We’ve made lots of progress, as you can see, but now, we hunker down and start getting even more serious. We’ve taken on new people since shipping the mod who will help us in a massive pass over division one to facelift all the maps further, bring in new features and new functionality, and will form the more-or-less final version of RTBR Division One sometime in the future. In the meantime, we have others beginning work blocking out the rest of division two so that when the big chapter one update is finally complete, we can begin work on division two, too.
Before ending up for now, then, I want to say we’re looking for a few roles on the team, as ever:
- Programmers – we’re looking for a dedicated and competent programmer who can dedicate a lot of time to the mod setting up custom functionality and features we have in mind.
- Level Designers – more level designers who are competent with visuals, gameplay design, and more will be handy for developing division one and leading the charge on division two.
- Voice actors – We’re still in need of someone able to make a good crack at Eli Maxwell’s voice for Division Two
If any of these roles interest you, please add me on Discord at Kralich#0901.
That’s all for now. These last few weeks have been a very busy time for us, but as we hunker down and get back to work, we’ll continue to be active on Twitter, ModDB, and on our Public Discord. Stay tuned – we’ve no intention of stopping now, and we’re fully equipped to continue pushing forwards, all the way to the Citadel.