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Urban Terror

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The 27 Days of Terror: Day 4 - Level Overview Riyadh

in Urban Terror - posted Tuesday, 08 August 2006 by FrozenSand
One level that has been a community favorite among CFTers was the release of Riyadh, created by .EXE for Beta 2.3, released August, 2001, nearly 4 years to the day! Since that time, the level has remained relatively unchanged. It did receive a minor update in 2002 for the release of Beta 2.6.

Riyadh is one of the few levels that were mirrored for game play, which might explain its popularity among Urban Terror leagues. Each outpost now has five different entry points, including a large, partially open main entrance, a main side entrance, two lower doorways and finally one new hallway that brings gamers in on the upper level.

Most gamers will immediately recognize the changes on Riyadh, which includes new buildings on each side of the level and some ruins, such as buried and broken walls placed on the center hill that divides the level in half.

I decided to add the new buildings to provide some cover for the spawns and interest to the map. I've played the map a lot and noticed how hard it is to get out of spawn once the opposing team has taken the hill so I added the buildings to give some cover on that side. I added the walls on top of the central hill to add some interest and cover up there,??? says BladeKiller.

The design changes, with the addition of the buildings will definitely added a new dimension to the playability of Riyadh. The sniper rifles were heavily used on Riyadh, so much so that is did turn some gamers off to this level. up to this version I did not like this map very everything has changed,??? says DarkDancer. He goes on to say, “the new buildings and the walls on the hill make this map much more playable for non-sniping guys like me.???

Frea]{ has similar thoughts, glad ut_riyadh received some work. It always was a fun and fast map in my opinion. The only problem was that it was easier for snipers than auto monkeys, but the few new buildings should help these to get through other side of the map more easily.???

Along with new buildings, the skybox and lighting has been changed as well, which makes Riyadh a great looking level. Take a tour through this desert oasis and don’t forget to pack your weapons.

The 27 Days of Terror: Day 3 - SWAT Team

in Urban Terror - posted Monday, 07 August 2006 by FrozenSand
BladeKiller has put in literally thousands of hours over the years creating, modifying and completing reskinning the many of the models used in Urban Terror today. Like some assets, the models have remained unchanged since Urban Terror Beta 2.0, which was released June, 2001. Prior to that release, the models that were included were the original models from out inaugural release August, 2000.

For the new release, the male and female models have been built from scratch, started by CGMonkey and finished by BladeKiller. We will get into the model details in a future update [yes, that means you must wait some more...patience young grasshopper], when we talk about their development and animation.

Today we bring you the first in a series of screenshots that intend to bring out the culmination of the time and effort to create the new skins that will be included in the upcoming release. “I tried a lot of things before settling on this “theme??? including camouflaged pants and then camouflaged vests, and then 27 asked for a Kill Bill outfit for the Red Team females. Yellow didn't look good though so I changed it to red, from that came the idea of the Red Dragons and the males in orange prison garb and that prompted the blue team as SWAT and a theme was born,??? says BladeKiller.

One of the big complaints from the community has been the visibility of opposing players, depending on the skins we previously had. Beta 2 brought the idea of leg and arm bands, which would increase the visibility issue and you would be able to pick out your teammates easier. Skins were continually updated and changed throughout the 2.x development cycle. The bands were finally removed prior to 3.0 in lieu of new skins, again created by BladeKiller.

So, with visibility in mind, BladeKiller took to creating new skins for the upcoming release, with input and ideas spawning from the Quality Assurance Team. “Brolly helped with the idea of the dark vests and Hybridesque with the idea of using black for the red males to go with the orange instead of brown, like I was trying, and Tango for being blind and not being able to see the first skins I tried with the old models which propelled a lot of this.???

Comments from around the Quality Assurance Team are rather positive. “Visibility seems good on the maps I tried (casa/turnpike/austria) and I think they look pretty good. I hope other people will feel the same,??? says woekele. Snoppis chimes in with, “What can I say, they are extremely good looking i never thought they could look so good.??? BladeKiller was continually looking for input throughout the design process to make sure we did not run into visibility issues. Finally, Hybridesque sums it up with, “[the models/skins] are light years from the old Athena [they were so archaic]...was nice to watch BladeKiller develop those skins.???

The 27 Days of Terror: Day 2 - Community Expectations

in Urban Terror - posted Sunday, 06 August 2006 by FrozenSand
The development team holds close ties with their community since the beginning of Urban Terror back in 2000. During that time we have listened to suggestions, feedback and criticism from the community that has made Urban Terror what it is today.

We know that anticipation and excitement runs high as the development team and community gear up for a new version to be released. Sometimes that anticipation has paid off with a great release, while other times frustration quickly set in upon release due to a missed bug or some sort of niggle [that is coder speak] that should have been resolved prior to release.

This upcoming release is one of the most highly anticipated releases based strictly on the amount of time the development team has spent refining and updating the current version [3.7] you are playing online.

For months many gamers have been speculating on the release, while others have quit asking and some have taken the "it's done, when it's done" approach. Hmmm, who coined that phrase? A day does not go by the question is not asked, “When is Urban Terror being released????

The 27 Days of Terror: Day 1

in Urban Terror - posted Saturday, 05 August 2006 by FrozenSand
Today begins the first of twenty-seven updates in the development of the new version of Urban Terror as we close in on the actual release. While it has been over a year since the last release, v3.7, much has transpired since that time. Rehashing some of the old news, we made a few announcements about converting the mod to RtCW:ET, which was cancelled by the development team. Prior to that we incorporated as a legitimate business, while Silicon Ice Development may live on in our memories, the development team became officially known as Frozen Sand, LLC. We spent about 12 months working on a playable demo that we showed off to some in the industry who provided input and feedback.

We did take a considerable amount of time off from any sort of development from Urban Terror. When we made the decision to move forward with a new release [you know it as 3.8], it was originally intended to be a small patch in order to fix some minor issues and provide an update to some of the current levels. Tub has spent a goodly amount of time updating his levels and instead of letting them go to waste we decided this would form the basis of our release. As usually happens with any update, minor changes are added, other levels are modified, models are tweaked, code is changed. Before you know it that \"small patch\" has suddenly turned into a full blown, major release. That is where we currently are on this current development cycle.

This release is going to be a whole lot more than \"just a step\" from 3.7 to 3.8. We are fully aware the community has been yearning to play a new version of Urban Terror for some time, an early or incomplete release would not have satisfied given the amount of time that had passed. I am sure some updated levels would have pleased Team Survivor and Capture the Flag players to some extent, but to the development team there would not have been closure on the mod. It is rare to see any development last that long on a single game on a dedicated engine.

While the development team has been streamlined, we do have some very dedicated individuals working to make this release happen. Even though the [development team] players have changed over the years, the game has stayed the same. We know our roots; gamers want to experience that fast paced action Quake III Arena is known for. People like TwentySeven, Bladekiller, RabidCow, HighSea, Lt1, |NV|S, Riche and ShminkyBoy, just to name a few have put forth great effort, long hours and sacrifice to complete this upcoming release.

Over the next 27 days you will see the fruits of our labor as we prepare for the release of Urban Terror. You will be given a look at the models, levels, weapons and other \"features and goodies\" that have been included during this development cycle, along with video shorts of the new Urban Terror. We will talk to the development team, along with some community supporters and people involved in leagues such as Clanbase and STA.

We look forward to providing this information and media to those in the community who have continued to stand by the development team and support the game they love to play, Urban Terror.

Fraggin' in da Hood

in Urban Terror - posted Saturday, 20 May 2006 by FrozenSand
Today we bring you more screenshots of an upcoming level from Urban Terror. Today's offering, ut_crewnshaw brought to you by |NV|S, who actually barely escaped with his life trying to get photographs from the hood. Remember, you got to fly the right colors when in Crenshaw.

From the screenshots you can see some exciting changes, such as the terror taking place during nighttime as opposed to daytime in previous versions. "I'll be adding some new faster routes to the flag, and there will be some areas that will require some climbing or wall jumping to get to," says |NV|S. When looking at the new layout, gamers can expect a Crenshaw that is now the size of the highly popular, Turnpike, "it's much faster paced for CTF and for TS/Bomb." The entire level is also being modelled in Maya as opposed to Radiant.

For all those gamers who want to frag "old school" ut_docks will have a facelift. |NV|S says, "I am totally retexturing Docks as well, there will be no route or game play changes, but a major "sexification pass" will be done on it. Screenshots on that will be forthcoming as well."

Rommel Revisited

in Urban Terror - posted Thursday, 18 May 2006 by FrozenSand
Yes, believe it or not development does continue on Urban Terror. As for news, it's been rather quiet for some time as we continue to put the finishing touches on the next release. Today we have a few more shots from an updated Rommel, originally designed by Bar-B-Q, since then updated and revised by Bladekiller and RabidCow.

As for a release date, we have a general idea as to when we would like to get it to the gaming community, but are going to hold back for a bit longer until we are sure we are ready for the release. Once the announcement is made we will start coordinating our efforts to get FTPs and web sites to host the new files.

Tour Thingley

in Urban Terror - posted Sunday, 26 February 2006 by FrozenSand
One of the new levels that will be included in the upcoming release is called Thingley (ut_thingley) developed by newcomer, Riche. The level is based off off Thingley, Wiltshire in southwest England. This is one those levels that has been under constant change from the first day it was added. Along with testers providing their feedback and assessment of gameplay on Thingley, BladeKiller and RabidCow have been involved heavily with transforming Thingley from what it was originally, to where the map is today.

Some of the changes in the level are subtle, such as changing texturing, adding trim to buildings, the placement of flower beds or the height of a wall. other changes were fairly major, such as lowering the red side of the level [accomplished by RabidCow], working on the spawn location in relation to the position of the flag. RabidCow also removed some of the buildings [created in Radiant] and replaced them with full scale models created in 3D Studio Max.

Other changes including a well model in the park, most of the tunnels were made into Z-shapes, gave buildings overhangs and chnaged long straightways so they are jogged [can't give snipers that advtange now, can we?], added stone walls in the park and modified some of the wooden fences into stone and rot iron on the main street. Most of the chimneys were replaced with models or unique brushes. Riche also made a church for a different level, which he then created a prefab and included it in Thingley. Oh yeah, we also added a ferret!

Progress Report

in Urban Terror - posted Friday, 24 February 2006 by FrozenSand
Hopefully with this news piece we can clear up some of the confusion as to the state of development, current testing and the upcoming release. We understand we are answering questions from two groups. Those who don't necessarily frequent the forums and those who hit the web site from time to time.

State of development: Originally the upcoming release was to be centered about new or updated Urban Terror levels. Tub had put a considerable amount of time working on his levels (for the now defunct ETUT), so instead of not getting them to the community we decided to work up a "small" patch. Development being what it is, the scope of the project started small, but eventually increased in size. This is both good and bad. Bad because the development cycle increases, meaning you have to play the current version and wait longer. Good because we are taking the time to fix problems, update features and add some that "new car smell" to Urban Terror.

Current testing: Testing continues on both sides of the Atlantic, where have increased our European testers recently in order to provide more complete feedback and have a larger pool of QA testers to pull from when we need something tested. To date, the QA gamers continue to provide feedback, discuss changes/features/current implecation, troubleshoot levels and game play and get in some test matches to get an overall idea of how the upcoming version of Urban Terror will play. For inquirying minds, we are not actively seeking new QA members, but have approached some community gamers to be included in the testing.

Upcoming release: No, we have not set a date for the release. I know this comes as no surprise, but we are still working on completing the core of the game. Currently, we still have a list of items and features, along with testing and troubleshooting that needs to be accomplished in order to provide a window for the release date. Once we are within a 2-3 week period from the release date, we will start to unfold all the changes that have taken place during this development cycle.

It is our hope this will be the final Urban Terror that helps spur the community and carry us over into our new Urban Terror project. We understand the community is not getting any larger right now, but we still have a great core group of gamers that enjoy the game and want to see it flourish. We believe there is still a lot of life left in Urban Terror or else we would not continue working on it.

Coming tomorrow..tour ut_Thingley by Riche (finished by BladeKiller)

Development Update

in Urban Terror - posted Tuesday, 24 January 2006 by FrozenSand
The development team has been very ?hush hush? since the start of the new year in regards to the ?3.8 patch? scheduled for release later this year. Since the start of 2006, the team has made great strides in continuing development for Urban Terror. ?We are pleased with the work that has been accomplished this month,? said BladeKiller.

QA testing is in full swing with a near full team comprised of gamers through out the world with a wide Urban Terror background and varying skill levels (please no Oswald sucks jokes). Our testers have been available nearly 24/7 play testing an array of different features and all the updated levels to ensure they are problem free. Special thanks to the clan leaders on QA who have been instrumental in organizing test play sessions. We do want to mention Woekele, tango, String and Kr0m for their continued support, as well as the other gamers participating on the QA Team.

As for details to what is included in the release, we will continue to keep those within the team, but many of the features and fixes we were after have been accomplished and are being tested on a continual basis. What is not really a surprise are the levels that will arrive with this release. Currently there are some 20 levels being modified, test played. These levels are a mix of development team created and community supplied levels. As in the past, we have shown off some of the work, such as the levels from Masheen, as well as the work INVIS continues to do on his levels. Many of the current levels will still be supported and played, some with changes to improve the playability (changing spawns or flag spots for example). We are also including some never before seen levels courtesy of Riche.

Thanks for the Maps!

in Urban Terror - posted Monday, 23 January 2006 by FrozenSand
It is with much regret the Urban Terror Community says good bye to a long time support web site for the mod. As of February 1, 2006, MidgetKiller will be shutting down the Urban Terror Map Depot, citing "lack of interest" and a "change in goals."

The Map Depot has been a mainstay in the community for a few years with MidgetKiller at the helm, hosting and maintaining the site as new files for Urban Terror were released over the years. He has helped many gamer out by providing those hard to find levels for the mod and has been a wonderful source for help when it comes to gamers interested in level design.

Silicon Ice Development (now Frozen Sand) wants to extend their thanks to Brian Hill for all his time and effort put forth over the lifetime of the Map Depot in support of Urban Terror and most of all in support of the community that rallied around his web site. This will be a difficult site to replace as the amount of information contained within will have no home.

Please take time to show your appreciation of thanks for what MidgetKiller accomplished at the Map Depot. Both him and the web site will be missed terribly. From those of us on the development team, we extend our thanks for what you have done for the team, such as creating and hosting our current web site. Your support and talent will be missed. Best of luck with your future endeavors!
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