22 October 2009

Red Barron

In a FAS Input Forum Thread, it was asked if FAS would have a similar jump mechanic to the HL version of Firearms where people were able to jump around and still and be able to fire effective. "The only penalties we have for jumping are a stamina decrease, and a slight disorientation of the screen similar to that of FA," DysPatch said. This goes along with other comments in the past about FAS having a more arcade like experience, not a tactical shooter.


FAS has material penetration - meaning you can shoot though some objects in the maps - according to DysPatch is this FAS Input Form Thread. The amount of damage though walls depends on many factors. According to DysPatch: "It is based on the material and thickness of the wall. If its a thin metal sheet, you bullets will pass through it with ease. If its a thick concrete/brick wall, it wont pass through."

Remakes Redone

DysPatch has updated his developers journal with a list of changes he has made to his maps - ps_snowstorm, tc_rubble and tc_iwojima - as well as

PS_Snowstorm (Most heavily modified of my maps):
- Added two rather large routes on either side of the middle capture point.
-- entrance/exit to middle
-- entrance/exit to center
-- exit to underground tunnel

-- entrance from sniper tower
- Elongated the middle to fit more players

- Moved last flag capture to the bunker left of the spawn exit

- Replaced old sniper tower for red with a new one that has more cover

- Added new right to the left of the sniper tower incase red is being pinned down at their spawn

- Added alternate spawn exit for blue to drop into the dark building incase blue is being pinned down at their spawn

- Added two new routes at the end of both tunnels in hopes to reduce spam

16 October 2009

Ninja Post

Shinobi has updated his blog with screen shots of ps_derailed and ps_crossfire.

Crossfire had a lot of extensive play testing and some of the narrow pathways have been expanded into more open rooms to help with flow. For example, "turning a long stretch of hallway into a garage so that there can be some width and crossover to the main route."

Derailed had a similar problem with bottle necking in some areas. These areas have been competently redone from one route to four routes. In addition, the whole blue side of the map has been opened up and the cap points have been reduced from five to three.

09 October 2009

Medical School

In a FAS Input Forum post, Oelund gave insight to the future of the medic skill. Oelund plans for future RCs plans to add first person animations when a medic treats a person.

"Like if you surture somebody you'll see your weapon holster, and a hemostat would appear, he'd then take a surture needle and wrap the thread around the hemostat backwards two times in preparation for a instrumental knot, and grap the needle with the hemostat. both would then holster and the weapon would reappear," he described. While this sounds like it would take a while and slow down gameplay, he says it would only take two to three seconds.

Oelund continues saying that treating people would still be instant on the target; also there would not just be one animation for every medic ability. Other animations would be, "opening a pack of quikclot for medic1 skills, unrolling a Samsplint for treating broken legs."

Pass the Ammo

In a FAS Input Forum post, Oelund commented about the possibility of a variety of ammo types in future versions of FAS. While it would be possible to have many ammo types such as Full Metal Jacket, Armor Piercing Steel Core, etc, it would not be beneficial to game play. The change in ammo types would make the differences between weapons less noticeable. If a weapon is coded for weaker damage compared to another and suddenly a player has the option to increase the damage by selecting a different ammo type, it would make one of the weapons redundant.

This is not to mean that no weapon would have different ammo types. Shotguns and grenade launchers, with their variety of specific shells, would provide unique ammo types as well as keeping balance. Also, some specific weapons that are available in different chambers, such as the Robinson Armament XCR, could be a candidate for multiple ammo types. This weapon would be an exception to the rule, as the entire upper part of the gun is changed out for the new caliber. In addition, the two types of rounds it can chamber - the 5.56mm and 6.8mm SPC - would be easy to balance, "6.8mm is more powerful, but magazine only hold 25 rounds (vs 30 in 5.56)."

This is still speculation and is a long way off. It a weapon like this ever does come, it would be with or after FAS implements its weapon-attachment system it has planned for future RCs.

Breaking the Mold

Don't expect every FA map to be remade for FAS. In thread in the FAS input forum, DysPatch commented that, "I have sorta promised myself I wouldn't make any more "remakes," primarily because they often don't play the same in Source, and they are a pain in the ass to balance." While many players would like older maps for nostalgia stake, trying to balance older maps while keeping them look like the original was to much work, according to DysPatch. In addition, all the resources to make a older map new could put to the creation of a new, better map.

Though, this is not to say that no more maps would be remade. The strongest candidate for a remake so far is obj_bocage as it has all ready been started by undertone.

Annual Alpha Tester Journal Updates

mg23, a recent addition to the FAS alpha testers, had posted a lengthy post in the FAS alpha tester's journal. mg23 is an FA veteran, playing since 2.4 and participating in many leagues in the infamous clan, [S^D] as well as playing a Firearms League (FAL) match in FA2's remake of ps_river. As such, he has came into testing FAS with many expectations: fast game play, benefit to the player who can aim, and benefit to the player who knows how the game is played.

With all this experience with various versions of Firearms, mg23 concludes that, "FA:S is a more polished and more fun game that is lead by a dedicated team of developers who are looking to make this game as it should be." The old maps remade to FAS are enjoyable, says mg23, but the newer maps are not overshadowed by the nostalgia of older maps, able to hold their own.

Weapons were a major concern for mg23 as well. "I'm a sniper at heart, but I've been a staunch advocate of rushing until reinforcements are depleted," said mg23. He believes that the weapons should all be useful for pushing forward and capturing objectives. If you enjoyed this type of game play as well, mg23 reports that this style of game play is prevent and any worries about weapon balance has been laid to rest. While he enjoys the M4 and Sako for their variety of use, he has been impressed greatly by the M24. "The M24 is... incredible. For the first time I feel like picking up a bolt action rifle in a Firearms game," he said. In addition, there is no scope sway in FAS - unlike later editions of Firearms on HL - making them able to take on ARs that are good at long range.

In summary, "FA:S is what Firearms should be: it's fast, great-looking, and a blast to play. It's also nearing completion, so it's something tenable for you folks. Those worried that league play is not getting its fair shake need not be worried. It's my belief that FA:S will have a lot to offer competitively, and I look forward to seeing how this fully develops."

More Sand

Understone has updated his developer's journal with some new screen shots of ps_sand. Currently, undertone has been working on HDR lighting and color for the map, as well as a few balance issues such as adding doors to the spawns to prevent spawn camping, as well as the adjustment of props and removal of some cover elements.