It’s Out! Finally!

I think things are slowly returning to normal. This past weekend has been outstanding. As many know Silicon Ice Development released Urban Terror Beta 2.6 yesterday. It was a very long and tiring day for those on the development team who took part in the release party festivities. Mad props go out to all of SID, especially Density who was a real trooper the last few days when it came to the code base.

If you missed Friday and Saturday, we held back to back, Urban Radio programs. Saturday’s program, the Urban Radio Pre-Release Party was out of control. You can download and listen to the shows from the Radio tab. Thanks to the guys at TsN Central we had enough bandwidth to accommodate nearly 600 listeners! Now that is support! It was an excellent time for all, as we discussed the upcoming release, new features, weapons and support features for the mod. Things such as the kick ass Urban Terror Manual. Course I am pimping it, cuz I spent a few months working on it. My contribution to Beta 2.6…hahah.

As for the mod itself, the Beta 2.6 release was very successful! The servers are increasing in numbers, gamers are at an all time high and everything…well most everything is going well. There are bugs and we are aware of many of the common issues that the community is bringing out attention. Of course they are catching things we had fixed, yet something seems to causing problems. So, SID is working on it.

As for the level designers, thanks to Dragonne has updated the def file for Urban Terror. This def file has new keys for the doors: gamemode_open and gamemode_shut. You put the game types that you want the doors locked open or locked closed in those keys I mentioned. If you are not sure what we are talking about, then load up ut_rommel in Team Survivor and CTF and you will notice the tunnel system is locked out and you cannot access it in TS. But in CTF they are open. Nice, huh?

Many mixed responses on the new levels SID released with Beta 2.6. One person will bad mouth ut_uptown and then the next person will praise the changes. It is like that for many of the updated SID levels. The same can be said of ut_riyadh, seeing as those two levels have stirred some controversy in the mod. Guess some gamers do not like change.

As for new levels, the community has responded very to the new levels. Mines by Bar-B-Q is a very popular level, many enjoy the ambiance of the level. Yet a few have had a hunkmeg issue with it. Others seem to like WU’s offer called Turnpike, as it offers fast game play and some excellent texturing.

I think by far, the most popular level was RabidCow’s Twin Lakes, version two, that SID decided to include in the distribution. RabidCow has spent months working, tweaking and improving the original level. All his hard work definitely paid off as Twin Lakes is just visually amazing. You should check out the sky box. WOW! The big trees are well, just freaking huge! The texturing is the highest quality, along with many great features. Check it out!

New Levels from SID

Ooooh, where should we start? How about with a “confirmed” rumor that the new point release for Quake 3, 1.32 will be out next week, as reported by RogeR over on Planetquake3. Of course I have been mum on the entire cloud surrounding the point release, since I did sign an NDA with id Software and was not going to compromise anything that I knew. So, the community has been digging that news, as is SID.

As promised, we are going to show off some of the work that the level designers of Silicon Ice has been up to. Some might know the name, WU. He is a level designer, who has been around the dev team from the beginning. Actually a long time member, but his only level he really did, that still remains is called Beachhouse. Maybe some of you heard or have seen screen shots of it. It was never released, due to missing textures. WU has been hard at work on a new level we featured in our ‘Latest Action Shot’ a few days ago. The level is called ut_turnpike and is a industrial/urban type area that features an overpass. Currently it only supports TS and TDM, as he told us, but he is going to look at adding CTF spawns and flags.

We will keep tabs on the progress of this level. No decisions as to when we will see this level released for Urban Terror. Also, if you check out the action shot today, Bar-B-Q [coned] has been busy, as usually. When he is not out with the [PIT] crew coning gamers, he is actually mapping. His new level is called ut_mines and features and semi-abandoned series of mines. Interesting level, some nice work, perhaps his best to date. Yeah, I know its tough to beat Rommel…we will be feature more shots of this level soon.

Ever wanna see BIG…I am talking BIG trees? Soon you will, thanks to ydnar and RabidCow. No further information on that…yet. But the screen shots I have seen are highly impressive. RabidCow, again on the cutting edge of level design and development. Props man, Twin Lakes is going to be amazing! We will present some screenies on that level soon as well.

Now, I don’t even know why I am going here, but I have been at it again, dabbling in GtkRadiant. I am going to blame Kostas this time around. I saw his level and got the bug to go back in and see if I was “skilled.” Hahaha…let’s put it this way, I have a full layout. If this work gets past the initial stages, it will make it’s way into a CTF level. Way too early for any sort of screen shots. Of course, we have seen me do this in the past. So, right now, don’t hold your breath.

Coming tomorrow, meet rustyTNT from |d’angels|, down in Australia. We will tell you about how her interview came about for the continuing Fem Fatale Series, right here on The 6th Floor.

Do you have what it takes?

Our interviews with the Urban Terror mappers continue this week. Recently we added, the following Silicon Ice Development mappers to our Interview Section: BattleCow, Bot Killer, The Riddle and WU. Give them a read and get inspired!Maybe you have noticed that the Action Quake 2 information is slowly beginning to go the way of the dinosaur here at The 6th Floor. Sorry A-Team! But look at it this way, you laid the foundation for many other realism mods. Thanks! On that note, you can check out the new Help Section for answers to any further questions. The same can be said for the Links Section. It even includes the new Urban Terror button to place on your site! While you are at it, grab The 6th Floor button also.Next on the agenda of reorganization, working on the required files, editors, tools and tutorials to get you started on your way to mapping heaven for Q3 and specifically, Urban Terror. There is an overwhelming amount of information out there, which could possibly deter someone from wanting to begin. I will help to wade through all the muck and help sort it all out.Not much news out of the Silicon Ice Development camp. The word came down from dokta8 and GottaBeKD, they have implemented ‘func_breakable’ in the Urban Terror code, which will allow for breakable glass. We have heard the mappers are quite excited about this new feature! He coders themselves were so excited they decided to throw rocks and play around in a glass for countless hours. Sounds like they need to be put in a white, padded room. Keep up the good work guys!

Oswald Rant: Urban Terror Development Team – Mappers

Although mapping is usually a task left to those in the community, the Urban Development Team did take on a few known mappers from Action Quake, along with a couple new names to create a core group of maps for the beta release. Although not all the mappers are included here with a bio, the team members are: Battle Cow, Gerbil!, Gimp, mourne, NRGizer, The Riddler and WU.

Mourne is currently working on his first mod in Urban Terror, but has been playing Quake since the beginning. Before that it was Wolfenstein and Duke Nukem. Another id Software fanatic!

“I love doing graphics stuff primarily Photoshop, but my main deal is computer hardware and software, mostly networking. I’m in college doing a Cisco networking program, and am 3/4 of the way thru it. I am then going to take a test and become CCNA certified.”

Most of mourne’s spare time is spent on workin on Urban Terror, creating maps. “I just finished Thief: Gold (one kick ass game)….I also play Action Half-Life and Action Quake 2…as soon as I can get my hands on Thief II, I am play that! Sometimes I load up SNES and play Chronotrigger, FF5, FF6 and Metroid 3.”

NRGizer is known in the Action Quake 2 community thanks in part to his contributions in the way of four maps, based on the small, west coast, Finnish town he lives in. “The maps I made for AQ2 were semi-popular, but I feel that I’ve really found my place now, where I can take advantage of the massive polycounts coming with the Q3 engine. Other than mapping I guess I’m a little of an all rounder when it comes to computers.”

His personal background includes all things Urban Terror and school. Before UT there was also time for some sports, like basketball and also some music. I live in a little town named Malax (6000 inhabitants), Finland. I’m going on my second year in Vasa Ovningsskola where I’m attending the IB programme.

WU is the final mapper and considers himself fairly proficient with Photoshop and loves to map, that is why he is on the Urban Development Team.

“I started mapping for Quake 2, but I never released anything due to quality (I was learning…hehe). I played AQ2 some, but probably not as much as the others. I played Rogue Spear addictively for a little while as well. Quake 3 1v1 is probably my favorite for now (until this beta comes out of course =P ). Being an lpb, I love q3dm17 (I’m a rail whore). Most of one map is done (the urban one in some of the screen shots), as well as a lot done of that beach house map. I have never done realistic mapping, so this has been a bit of a learning experience for me. Well, I really have to get to mapping now or else this map won’t be done in time for the beta.