Why does it seem I start every news bite the same way? “Damn, has it been a month since I updated?” Well, yes Oswald, it has. Again not much on my part to dedicate to keep up on what’s going on in the Urban Terror Community. I am not out of the loop, just behind. I don’t think much needs to be said when it comes to the development of the “next” release of Urban Terror. Look for an update on the web site in the coming days!

As for level design, I still cannot map…hahah. Too time consuming, like many of you I have some great ideas, but I am nowhere the accomplished level designer, along the lines of INVIS, SweetnutZ, Dragonne (yes I included you!), laerth and others. I will continue to do what I do best, bring you up to date on levels, with that said, let’s start off with someone who has some kick ass talent, along with a previous rocking CTF level. That level designer being MasHeeN. His level, ut_eagle is one of the most widely played community levels to date.

MasHeeN’s latest project is titled, ut_crossing and we have displayed some previous information on it, but now it is available for all to play test and improve. Based around SID’s “post Cold War” theme, here is how the level is touted. “It is 1980. On a cold evening in the USSR, an industrial area holds more secrets than it wishes to disclose, but someone has been searching. Vital documents are missing that prove the existence of this, much denied, processing system. The foreign agents must be found and stopped at all costs!

While I have not played ut_crossing on a test server yet, I have taken a tour of the facility and while I cannot comment on playability, the other “design areas” that make a successful level are there. I am quite impressed with the overall layout, combining both interior and exterior areas for games to frag in. I think one of the most notable features gamers will comment on is the moving train. The sounds are outstanding! The rumble of the train moving through the facility really add to the overall level, same goes for the ambient noises. Being this is a “beta” version of the level, there are still some minor issues that need to be cleared up. I did note some z-fighting (that I am sure will be corrected), minor lighting issues that wash out the texturing and some older textures I would personally change, just because they are old, in terms of when they were released. There are definitely better textures out there that could replace them.

Again, texturing for many gamers is a minor issue, but in my book it is just as important as the five other “design criteria.” It also goes to show you are an accomplish level designer if you can combine all of this criteria together. If you would like to download ut_crossing, I recommend it, but in order to improve on what MasHeeN has done, please comment in this thread on the Urban Terror Forums. I also made a roadie this past week to the East Coast, you can read about my trip in the latest, Oswald’s Rant. Had a great time and I want to thank all those who made it possible: MFDoom, CaptPorno, AGBD, FSKGhozt, Fragging_Newby, Dragonne, QueenBee and those who made the trek to the {TRIAD} LAN Party.

Where Eagles Dare!

Hey hey….Oswald here to bring you the latest and greatest from the world that is Urban Terror. As I am sure most have seen, there is still no release date from the development team. But I have it on good authority they are making excellent progress…hahaha.

Speculation continues to swirl within the community. I can tell you, the development teams wants to release it as badly as most of you want it. But we cannot do that just yet. Still some buggy code to work through. Props to Density and 27 for working their asses off on this.

Today we bring you a new review. Yeah, really another new review of a level that was released around mid-June this year. That level is Eagle by “MasHeeN”. Believe it or not Eagle was his first “official release,” but I will continue to stand behind my principal of “never release your first level.” Eagle has quickly gained in popularity through out the Urban Terror community. You can usually find Thunder, of Thunder’s Playpen having a weekend fling with Eagle, where you can play the same map all weekend long. You can read my thoughts on Eagle, right here.

We also continue our series on Female Gamers over in our Rants Section. Today we talk with Vampyress from UTZ. Many involved in the community know who she is, but now you can get a feel (no, not that type of feel) for who she is, as we are provided insight on her gaming world. Be sure to check out the previous interviews and the introduction here. Thanks to Vampy for the feel…err…I mean interview. Don’t want LOD after me. Hahah.

You “old school” terrorists will remember R.U.C.A.B. from eXKalibuR, during the early Beta 1.x days. There was a full and half RUCAB back then, but recently it has been reborn and eXKa is in the process of updating it.

He has asked that I provide him some feedback on this an internal version of the level. It has always been an interesting level, as eXKalibuR was a “mapper before his time” during the early Urban Terror. His levels were far above those from other level designers. Not sure when we will see a release of RUCAB. From the pak file I received, the level is done, but there are some issues he will need to resolve or it could run the same fate it did before when very few played it. CTF should rock on it. Watch for snipers on the rooftops!

-Update: I also added a new tutorial to the mapping tutorials section. This tutorial will walk you though your first fountain and comes to “the floor” courtesy of The Red Arrow. Check out and get all wet!