Friends of Terror

It is still hard to believe there is a group of dedicated individuals who have the desire and make the effort to keep Urban Terror alive. The fact we still have a very strong and dedicated community is a contributing factor to the longevity and success of the game.

I have been fortunate over those years to meet (yes, face to face) with many individuals on different levels as it relates to Urban Terror, from the invite to Quakecon in 2000 and 2001, to LAN parties in NoCal, SoCal and Colorado Springs and an appearance on TechTV (when it was around). There have been closed door, sit down meetings with Activision and id Software, which was more of a “wow factor” for me at the time since we did not know where we wanted to take Urban Terror.

If I knew then, what I know now, Frozen Sand (at the time, Silicon Ice Development) could be mentioned being on par with Splash Damage. Those guys had their shit together! They also had an amazing group of talented individuals. Not saying our development team hasn’t, because we have had over the years many contribute to the game.

Meeting gamers, executives, sponsors and personalities alike have been some of the best memories I have had. I mention this because I was able to meet Lt1 (aka Rob Bergman) last night, as he flew into NoCal for some training. Now, it’s not often that an opportunity arises, which will have gamers come in contact with each other, let alone team members. Remember, outside of meeting INVIS, BladeKiller and RabidCow I have not met the other talent on our team. But we have all worked together for nearly 4 years (if memory serves me correct).

It’s always interesting to put an alias to face, face to a voice and a voice to the online persona. I flashback to Quakecon 2001 when I was employed by TsN and our station was covering the event. I wanted to meet WarWitch, who at the time covered RtCW and was just an amazing announcer, complete with an entire online persona. With his voice, I expected something other than I got. Here stands a short, maybe 5′-5″ guy with a dark ponytail. Really blew my mental image of him, but nonetheless a great person and top class shoutcaster!

LAN parties are always interesting, especially when they were Urban Terror specific. Now I attended a weekly LAN in SoCal and Urban Terror was still rather new, but when our group made the transition to Quake III Arena, we played it every weekend. I did attend the .223 LAN in NoCal in 2003, which was also the first time I met Hottlipz face to face (little did I know we would marry a year later), along with many gamers from .223 and some other local Urban Terror players.

A few larger LANs featured Urban Terror and I was fortunate enough to attend those as well. Once in Los Angeles, where I was on hand to award the winner a custom Urban Terror case that was specially designed and constructed in Australia. I was also fortunate enough to attend EverLAN in Colorado Springs a few years, once when they did use an older version of Urban Terror.

Again, it is the people who make the game. I could sit here and rattle off a list of people who I have met and known over the years. I would love to have the time to go on a world tour just for Urban Terror. I know it sounds silly (Oh, remind me to talk about my East Coast trip!), but I think it would be a great time! I am sure there are enough gamers worldwide, I could shack up with, drink beer with and game with that could easily fill one month of travel.

The itinerary would include a trip south to Los Angeles and a stop by the GGL offices, where Epileptic Gaming transmits from, because djWheat is still Inside the Game. From there it would be on to Phoenix, Arizona to hook with Blankz, also of iTG. You can blame him for getting me involved in shoutcasting, thus the reason I can’t say Euro names correctly. I would fly to Colorado and check in with Spellbinder, because he has been a long time friend. This would be a coordinated trip to stop in Mesquite, Texas for Quakecon and countless people I know at that event including: Evil John, Tapper, Precious Death, the guys at id Software, especially Robert and of course, just to keep the list short Splash Damage.

The East Coast swing would include a stop to visit with Ghozt, AGBD and Fragging Newby. Hopefully we could find MFDoom, yes the now married Doomy and Capt. Porno. I went shooting with these guys and hung out with them years ago and it was one of the most memorable trips. Especially when you don’t know dick about some guy who goes by ‘A Giant Black Dude.’ Maybe a quick stop over in Florida to kick the shit out of BasiLisK.

The European tour would start with a stop in Portugal, why? Because I still feel they are the best community of gamers going for Urban Terror (yeah flame me, then fuck off, it’s my website and my opinion). From there it would be on to England to see Dick Dastardly and his flatmate, Qster and lord know who else we would find in and around the UK.

A trip would not be complete with traversing he frozen tundra of Sweden, Denmark and Finland (sorry Norway!). Definitely stop by House Valhalla! Many in the Danes and Swedes on the list who have been supporters for many years. A tour of the Rhine, well, Germany to meet Warbird (aka Wolfseye), since he has become a good friend.

An intersting stop would be Slovania, because of SLOfaca, Blaz especially and many of his countrymen have been wonderful to cover and talk to over the years. The Netherlands would mark one of the final stops, to meet “Whoa Keeley” or woekele. I need to forgive my lack of knowledge, but I would want to hook up with J0E and Preat of FROServers.com. Then again I would hope J0E is not nekked getting into the shower.

I could go on and on about the names, faces and places. But it would be an endless cycle. It has been many years and gamers come and go, but it is interesting to note how many names return to Urban Terror saying something like, “this is the only game I come back to play.” Hopefully this sort of comment is typical through out the community. It has been one helluva ride over the years and hopefully there is more in store for our community and us, as a development team.

Parting shot, I must apologize for not mentioning dokta8, Sam Hinton, one of the original coders. He was a big influence on me, a great friend and the one who got me involved.

QuakeCon Coming…

Damn! Two days between posts, I am slacking off more and more it seems. That means one thing. Most of my time is being committed with Silicon Ice Development as we press toward our Beta 2 release for Urban Terror. So, bear with me as much as possible. If you have something of note or something that needs to be p1mped, then e-mail me

Let’s start with one of the more popular conventions held in honor of Quake. That’s right I am talking about the popular event know as QuakeCon 2001. While it is quickly approaching [Aug. 9-12 in Mesquite, Texas], Paul Jaquays of id Software is polling for ideas on seminars for QuakeCon. Last year, Silicon Ice Development took part in two seminars, one hosted by Team Reaction of JailBreak and QPong fame. The other was a roundtable discussion, in which John C. walked in and took part in. Very cool! So, if you think you can contribute a solid idea, check out this thread on the Quake3World Forums.

There is a new interview with BASiLiSK of Terrorstrike, which discusses their plans and future leagues. Check it out. That interview was made available by Urban Terror supporters over at Crossfire: Panadol, Darkness, Charbger and ChemicalBrotha! Also check out their new design on Crossfire as their bring you a comprehensive look at many of the top realism mods. Urban Terror included [yeah, I p1mped our mod].

I know this is a day old, but Graeme Devine at id Software updated his .plan file and talks a bit about the upcoming point release for Quake III. We’ve been working extremely hard to get it to you, and working with the mod community to get all the features into the point that you’ve asked for, and it’s all taking a little more time than we originally anticipated says Graeme. This relationship between mod development teams and a major software developer can on be a winning proposition for all involved. SID looks forward to the new point in order to take advantage of the new information it will include.

It’s Friday!

There is a new rant posted, which I mentioned a bit last night dealing with system specs and mods based on an article out of the April edition of PCGamer. A good read which can be found on Page 110 if you have access to it. While it would be nice to develop a mod for the “intended audience” I think there are other forces at work a development team must reckon with. But nonetheless, I give you my take on it.

While you are checking out the assortment of daily news, I am sure the only word you will hear today will be Tribes 2. All those who preordered and all those who cannot wait to get their hands on the latest and greatest from Dynamix. I dunno. I just cannot get excited over it. Yeah I played a bit of Tribes and it was okay. I am sure Preacher is going to hate me for saying this, but I really don’t have much interest in flying his light armored ass around. But nonetheless, I am sure I will have a copy in my hands at the Netzwerk Terror LAN on Saturday.

Thanks to Apoxol, for taking two impressive screen shots which were exclusive for Urban Terror – Germany. I know, the model is a bit small and hard to see, but it still looks pretty fresh! Check out [Shot #1] | [Shot #2]. Also a small correction on this German site. While SID team member CrazyButcher is a contributor, the site was set up by DASGiB, who is the webmaster and programmer of the site. Good luck!

Got an ICQ message today from an anonymous source who directed me to TerrorStrike. Having talked to BASiLiSK, I knew of his interest in developing this site and expanding on his ideas. Check out what TerrorStrike is all about. Oh yeah and after the fact I did see this reported over on the Urban Terror Guild. BASiLiSK is asking two things of gamers who visit the site: 1) provide feedsback so they can tailor around what the community wants NOT and 2) “It is important [to note] that we have developed components that communicate directly with our affiliate Q3 game servers, so the tournaments we sponsor will run virtually unattended. This will set us apart from other online gaming leagues.” There you go, direct from the webmaster himself. So give him your input and watch another community site take off. Thanks for the support.

Damn, maybe I should start a new 6th Floor contest. Be the first and lucky one to have the answer to this question: “When will Silicon Ice Development release Urban Terror Beta 2?” We always have GameSpy swag to give away. So feel free to e-mail me. Who knows if I will even follow though with this. But it is something to talk about as SID works on the next few builds, closing in on the release of Beta 2.

Remember, if you have a map, any map and want some input, ideas are constructive criticism, send it my way. I am always willing to check it out and provide feedback for you. This goes as far as sharing the level with some of the mappers on Silicon Ice.