Well its time to get the ball rolling and end the wait for the new map updates to be released. I have been working on these new updates for almost a year now and during that time alot of Starcraft II material has come available to me and my project and with the release of the beta version, i was able to obtain everything i needed to complete the Starcraft II look i was after for the new maps.
So I have decided to set a deadline and release one new map on the 1st of June 2010. This will give players 2 months of playability of the new map updates before Starcraft II is officially released to the world. This is the best result i can make for everyone as i still have alot of work left to do and i will release the new map regardless of how complete it is. I will spend the rest of May trying to finish off as much as possible and release what i have done in June.
So its been a few months since the last news article and I've made a few little developments in that time. My main focus has been with the art department and the making of icons and various skins from Starcraft II but i also have been editing every unit with stat and text changes that match that of the unit in Starcraft II. Also some small coding work has been done and the damage system for armor types has been changed. I will now go into detail about these developments now;
The art department has been working flat out pumping out over a 100 new icons for every unit/ability/upgrade in the maps to remove all those annoying Warcraft III icons that have remained in the maps project since its beginnings. Along with the new icons, various other skins were developed including new user interface consoles (UIs) for each race Terran/Protoss/Zerg, based on the consoles from Starcraft II. Skins for unit build queues and transport slots and heaps of other minor but important visual skins have bee developed as well.
The editing team has been hard at work as well. The information gathered from the Starcraft II beta, meant every single unit/ability/upgrade had to be edited with alot of tool-tip text information and resource cost being the main changes made. Some damage point changes where made to those units to match that of the Starcraft II equivalents.
Coding has now become one of the main problem areas for the new map updates. Patch 1.24b which caused the blocking of my maps from working at all, has made developing the maps coding very hard to fix. I have never been able to understand the complexities of JASS coding in Warcraft III and i have only been able to use the GUI side of code editing but with limited results. I was able to get assistants from the Hiveworkshop members in an attempt of repairing the Plyon Field trigger system but was unable to get a complete set of triggers to make the system work at all. This means Protoss will have a unbalanced building build bug in the new maps which im unable to fix in my timeframe and hope it doesnt lead to players playing as protoss due to this glitch. As well as this the mana shield system has been reimplemented but again the coding was pre patch 1.24b and so it wont work with the new updates and so i am hoping to find a substitute ability in replace this bug before the maps release. But one trigger system was developed successfully which was the vespene gas system. This system needed increasing as the new maps now has twice as many vespene mines and so new regions and triggers where developed and the system was finished in April.
The Terran race is the most completed race thus far and is 99% finished. I'm very excited to try out the new Terran's and everything i have changed and added to them. The remaining things i need to do with Terran's is some minor skin improvements.
Protoss have been in heavy development since March and are about 70% completed. The bad news for protoss players is the removal of the Reaver unit but the good news is the addition of 2 new units. The High Templar and Archon units into the game. I was also considering changing the Dragoon unit to a Dark Dragoon type and basing its stats from the Stalker unit in Starcraft II but decided against this as i was unsure how fans would take the change and if it would create an imbalance in Protoss firepower in long games. The Citadel of Adun has now become a primary research building for all Protoss unit upgrades much like the Terran Academy is now. The Carrier interceptor attack has had to be changed to that of a locust spawn ability from previous map version. This means interceptor attacks will be random and no need for building interceptors.
Zerg have had some development and are about 40% complete right now. There isn't too much work that needs to be done other then icon and skin development and editing the units and buildings.
This is a promise everyone and i will release the new map updates on the 1st of June and i hope you all support my project and spread the word and the new map once its finished.