29 September 2010

Will FAS League Play Turn into SSB

Super Smash Bros. Brawl is arguably one of the best selling fighting games ever made. The game's sales aren't the arguable part, but its status as a fighting game is. I know that the guys I've interviewed who play Brawl competitively would argue that it's just as much of a fighting game as Street Fighter or Soul Calibur. Do you think Brawl is a fighting game, and if so, do you think Brawl will ever be playable at EVO?

It’s a real fighting game. I didn’t always think that, but I changed my mind after spending more time playing both Melee and Brawl. We actually had Brawl on the main stage in 2008 (with items on!) and I thought it was one of the best tourneys that year, with some spectacular finishes and outstanding play. Most of the competitive Smash community prefers to play with items off, which is their call to make, but we try to play a kind of “no holds barred” style at EVO, until something is proven to be undeniably messed up. I can’t imagine how crummy Marvel Vs Capcom 2 would be today if we had started banning things the first time we thought something was “overpowered” or “too random.” (Source)

The current FAS League play seems to be similar to the SSBB league play, or at least heading in that direction. Banning weapons is never a good idea so early in the game's development, since players haven't figured out counters; when you ban the weapons, they never will know how to counter them, reducing the amount of skill involved in competitive play. DysPatch, the league admin, even admits the M79 is not a problem in with smaller player counts:

Sep 07 12:56:15 DysPatch - yeah i think the problem is, you only see how effectives explosives are when you have a full server
Sep 07 12:56:17 DysPatch - 1 on 1
Sep 07 12:56:26 DysPatch - if you have an m79 and the other person an AR
Sep 07 12:56:31 DysPatch - the person with the AR is going to win

So why the restrictions on a single weapon that the lead developer doesn't consider unbalanced with lower player counts? An over emphasis on league play and the leader developer catering to a small but vocal minority will not get FAS to the level of popularity that older versions of FA had.

05 September 2010

FAS 1.0E Released

FAS 1.0e has been released!

1.0e includes many new features for FAS, including:

Increased Weapon Accuracies
Decreased Armor Absorption Values
Weapon Re-Balancing
New Server Options
Over 60 Resolved Bugs

Read more about it here, along with download links!

Firearms 1.0e Complete Change Log

The complete change log for FAS 1.0e

- Speed modifiers for heavy and medium armor.
- You can select spectate from the team menu after spawning now.
- Fixed bug where you would be shown in the wrong team colour when an enemy you hurt would commit suicide. This is now shown as an "assisted suicide" in the death notices.
- Teamkills no longer report an assister to avoid confusion with the assister being in the wrong team colour. You are silently rewarded assist points.
- Improved assault rifle accuracy (usually 2-3x more accurate) - tweaked to 1024 unit range
- Improved SMG accuracy (about 1.5-2x more accurate) - tweaked to 512 unit range
- Improved pistol accuracy (to about the same degree as SMGs), lowered damage to compensate
- LMGs now have 0.25x the bullet cone while deployed
- M60 damage lowered
- M1911 damage increased
- SR-25 recoil significantly increased
- Lowered M79 Cost
- Fixed inaccurate skill descriptions
- When healing yourself with the IFAK, it no longer reports the previous healing target
- Fixed tracer rounds on the Vollmer
- Armor damage mitigation modified to lower values. Light 0.4x, Medium 0.5x, Heavy 0.6x
- Different types of armor have different armor hit point values, rather than being 150 for all of them. Light has 100, heavy has 200, helmet has 100, limb armor has 75
- Added new damage sounds
- Run speed reduced to 210 from 230 (~9% slower)
- Sprint speed reduced to 325 from 340 (~4% slower)
- Changed strafe and backpedal speeds. Backwards: 0.6 from 0.8, Strafe: 0.7 from 0.8
- Removed delay between firemode toggle
- Added missing MenuOpen/MenuClose/MenuPulse HUD animations
- Resolved sniper weapon selection slot conflicts
- Delay between voice and radio messages
- Weapons start with full ammo on spawn (6 reserve mags rather than 4)
- Hopefully improved stability of Mortars
- Added a fas_version command
- Reworked the ammobox code a little bit to address the ammoboxes only giving ammo to the current weapon
- Made some tweaks to the lighting effects for the NVG's to help prevent model texture/material washout
- Addressed an area of potentially invalid memory in the round over HUD element which could cause a crash
- Reworked some VGUI panels (MOTD, team panel, loadout etc)
- Fixed hint panel showing a black box with no text in it
- Fixed case where holding down MOUSE2 would continue to play the idle animation when you aim down the sights (G36C)
- Holding down the attack, attack2 or reload key will no longer prevent a weapon from deploying
- Solved some visual glitches associated with bolt action (or pump action) weapons
- Disabled the ability to jump if your stamina is less than the amount of stamina drained for jump
- Slightly upped the stamina drain for jumping from 20 to 30
- Setting fas_endgametimer to -1 will remove the 0 rein timeout, waiting until all the players on the team are dead or a full cap is made
- Added fov_desired cvar which is used in Valve's official games which allows you to adjust your FOV between 75 and 90. Defaults to 90
- You can no longer climb a ladder while prone or ducked
- Burst fire queues bullets to fire, so 1 click = 3 bullets (with M16/FAMAS), rather than having to hold it down
- mp_switchteams is now fully operational and will flip the teams when a server admin issues the command
- Ability to restrict weapons per-server through a weapons blacklist
- Shotgun reload cancelling waits until you have released the mouse button
- View punches for recoil are now applied to spectators
- Firemode recoil modifiers are fully operational
- Marksman skill increases accuracy in 10% increments rather than 5% (5->10, 10->20, 15->30)
- Projectiles no longer spawn at the other side of a wall when you're facing next to one
- Reinforcements are drained on spawn rather than death
- Added 4-directional hit indicators, in addition to the red fade
- Ammo caches will replace partial magazines
- Fix for ragdoll spam on initial spawn which would lag out players
- Re-compressed textures which should help users running on low end machines
- SG550 and FAMAS have been re-animated
- Specular maps added to weapon view models
- Fixed channels and attenuation of some sounds, fixes some issues where you can't hear the gun you're being shot by
- Fixed potential crashes with quick bandaging
- Kill icon for suicide
- Fixed ERRORNAME appearing when destroying SD objectives
- Fixed bug with animations and reloading when going prone with internal magazine weapons (M3)
- Fixed the appearance of an IFAK floating next to a player when a player has been put in spectator
- Weapons can fire underwater
- Added cvar fas_switch_teams_on_rwin which flips the teams and rein count between rounds
- Gunnery II now improves holster/deploy times as the label describes
- Server name now appears on scoreboard
- Game should now end after a full cap results in a team going to 0 reins

New for mappers in 1.0e
- PointsForDestroy keyvalue on sd crates to give players points for destroying the objective