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November 2018 - Squad's Next Phase

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Hey soldiers!
 
We know this doesn't look like your usual Recap, but while we are finishing up the last parts of a hotfix update for Alpha 12, we thought we'd lay out what we have planned for the next stage of Squad development, similar to what we did earlier this year.

 

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Alpha 12.1 Patch

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So, first up is the performance, bug fixing and balance patch that we are working on right now, which should be with you all shortly. We have looked at all the community feedback and improved what isn't quite working as intended, fixing as many bugs as we could in three weeks (obviously) as well as starting on the optimisation work that we'll talk about in a minute.

 

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Unreal Engine 4.21 Upgrade

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After that, the team is planning to upgrade Squad to Unreal version 4.21. We have been on version 4.16 since August 2017 and a year of NOT upgrading has been very useful, allowing our programmers a lot more time to concentrate on features. However, the recent success of Fortnite (a large multiplayer 100 player game) has brought so many cool and useful features into UE4 that it is worth the time to upgrade now.
 
Just as a very brief overview, some of the 4.21 for engine features that are relevant to Squad: there have been big improvements to the landscape system, making it cheaper and faster, networking has been overhauled, a lot of bugs have been fixed, a proxy system for statics, better profiling tools, and a whole bunch more. Check out the Unreal site for more information.
 
Our current status is that we have a buggy version of the upgrade working in Editor now. The next steps for us are to fix these bugs, test, and release. There might be some extra content, bug fixes, and features included, but it will be mainly about getting the engine upgrade in place, so we can start using the tools.
 
This will be the next major Squad patch released after Alpha 12.1.
 
The rest of the following is what we are working on right now and going into next year with the aim of getting the game fully featured to leave Early Access.

 

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Optimisation

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After Alpha 12, we are switching more developers to working full-time on optimisation all the way to release from Early Access. Not all systems developed for Squad over the years turned out to deliver the expected performance; engineering mistakes have been made and need to be corrected. The same applies to UE4, as bug fixes and performance improvements done on the engine level need to be carried forward into Squad's codebase. We have expanded the team to approach these issues more thoroughly than ever.
 
The first step is finding and understanding performance issues. This includes writing analysis tools to detect the cause of performance issues.
 
The second step is addressing these problems, which always requires a custom tailored solution. Sometimes, even at this point, tools need to be written to transition existing game data into new systems. We have already made a start and hope to have some of the first results in the hotfix, but will be aiming to include optimisation improvements in every patch from now until the end of Early Access.
 
We hope to share some articles on the issues we are finding and fixing, but we intend to focus on the fixing first, then the talking later!

 

Optimisation is a big task with a lot of crossover into features and bug fixing. Just to be clear, specific aims we are targeting are:

  • 100 player servers with good performance
  • An indepth improvement of the ragdoll system
  • Better frame rates for players both with low-end and high-end systems
 
We have read a lot of community posts asking us to stop with new features and just optimise the game. We hear you! However, there are a few features we think you might like still...

 

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Helicopters

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Yep, it is time. Not much to say beyond the obvious here: they're coming to Squad!
 
Currently, programmers are working on the flight model and we have a temporary flyable vehicle in-game. All of the art and interaction-based features can be worked on in parallel.
 
The current flight model is far from final, but looks awesome! Expect more updates in Monthly Recaps as development continues.

 

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Commander

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We want to introduce a basic commander system before we leave Early Access, as it really completes the concept of a true coordinated teamwork-focused military game. With a player on each side driving team-wide strategy and aiding squad leaders with the tools at their disposal, the Commander will be an essential factor in victories.
 
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We won't be aiming to include every awesome idea we have for the commander role, but it will lay the groundwork for expanding on after we leave Early Access. Features we are aiming to roll out on introduction are:

  • Making use of the new Command UI to facilitate giving orders and keeping track of your team.
  • Airstrikes, artillery barrages, offensive fire support capabilities.
  • Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), non-pilotable high altitude observation for the Commander.

 

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Damageable Turrets and Vehicle Wheels/Tracks

While the first iteration of components was introduced in Alpha 12 in a limited capacity, damageable turrets, tracks, and wheels will complete the vehicle fidelity we wanted, offering more ways to disable parts of vehicles without outright destroying them. Turrets are in and working with wheels and tracks in progress.

 

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Steam Join on Friends/Party system

We are trying to find ways to make it easier for groups of friends to easily join the game in a single squad, on the same team. This is quite a complicated task as it involves working with not only with Steam, UE4 and Squad code, but getting them all to play nicely together
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This is something we have wanted to do for a while but always had higher priorities. However, for a social game based around friends and teamwork, being able to play easily with your friends is long overdue. No promises on this one as it is not the easiest feature to implement, but we have very talented people working on it.

 

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Sign-off

There are some big milestones for Squad in the near future, but we've put together a team more than capable of taking it on. In fact, we're already getting excited for what comes after release... There is actually quite a lot of extra content being worked on that we haven't talked about and we'll update the progress of these (Including Fallujah! It's not ready for the spotlight just yet.) In the meantime, have a sneaky vehicle teaser below!
 
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Offworld Out.

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Two words...

 

Y   E   A   H       B    O   I  

Edited by shipidge

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Well, that is pretty damn amazing.

And is coming in the hopefully near future. Nice work guys, you are bring yours and ours dream alive!

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Great to see commander role coming before 1.0! Fireteams were complete success!

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Will there ever be a real time server browser or is it impossible in Unreal Engine 4,You can que to a full server and load into a 30 people one because it didn't show you that a round ended and people left,it takes about ~5 mins to update to the the new round player count

 

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Man, I just got GOOSEBUMPS and a big grin on my face seeing all of this! You devs are the best!

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1 hour ago, Disco said:

Great to see commander role coming before 1.0! Fireteams were complete success!

Yep, with offmap assets like PS, I can't wait for airstrikes..... :ph34r:

 

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Work on the game continues, it makes me happy.
But the 3D model of the tank is made poorly. Only in this image I see 2 critical errors made when creating the model.
Judging by the chassis, this is the t62 tank. In this case, to the right of the main gun there should be a loophole (oval) for a coaxial machine gun (PKT 7.62 × 54 mm). On the left should be the gunner's sight (TSH2B-41).
You have on the 3D model, they are confused in places most likely. Since I do not see the other half of the tower I can not be 100% sure. But besides this, the gunner's sight is closed with a cap.
I hope you read this and correct the mistakes made.
If you need clarifications or materials to weigh edits I am in touch.

Spoiler

ÐаÑÑинки по запÑоÑÑ Ñ62 ÑиÑиÑ


P.S. I hope you add a machine gun to the commander, please.

Edited by Togma

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not a fan of the commander role if its a commander role..if its a fire support and logistics support role then yea, but I wont be following some numpty or worse still, a egotist with Patton esq grandeur ...

 

as for the rest of it.. nice.

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4 minutes ago, embecmom said:

not a fan of the commander role if its a commander role..if its a fire support and logistics support role then yea, but I wont be following some numpty or worse still, a egotist with Patton esq grandeur ...

 

as for the rest of it.. nice.

A commander is a great addition. In PR the commander can help coordinate the team, by talking to the individual squad leaders and take care of coordinating transport, logistics and support when they need it. As of giving orders, in my experience squad leaders are quite cooperative if you give them suggestions instead i.e. Squad 1 is going for that objective, maybe you should build a firebase at this location etc.

 

The commander can further provide more Intelligence to the squad leaders by utilizing the UAV and thus easily tracking enemy armor and firebases. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, embecmom said:

not a fan of the commander role if its a commander role..if its a fire support and logistics support role then yea, but I wont be following some numpty or worse still, a egotist with Patton esq grandeur ..

Imagine if all 8 of your squad members took the same shitty attitude to your leadership. ^_^

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7 minutes ago, Psyrus said:

Imagine if all 8 of your squad members took the same shitty attitude to your leadership. ^_^

Ic an already co-ordinate with the rest of the squads directly... there is no need for a commander to tell me to do what I can already discuss witht he rest of the squads... nothing about shitty attitutde its just simple mechanics of the game... the role is one to support the squads not tell them what they should be doing ...  

my squad need me for a rally and communicating what other squads are doing ... what is the commander role going to do...?  tell my squad to go to x and defend? why?  I can already decide that for my self if its needed... do logi runs? 

 

Edited by embecmom

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You don't have to follow the Commander's orders if you don't want to, or if you think they are unreasonable, just do what you want. If it's anything like PR, then the Commander will be there to provide intel through the UAV and give fire support, he may suggest a course of action but there's nothing saying that you have to do what he says.

 

Your complaints sound more like "These changes have ruined the game even though I haven't played yet"

Edited by SShadowFox

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5 minutes ago, SShadowFox said:

You don't have to follow the Commander's orders if you don't want to, or if you think they are unreasonable, just do what you want. If it's anything like PR, then the Commander will be there to provide intel through the UAV and give fire support, he may suggest a course of action but there's nothing saying that you have to do what he says.

 

 

sort of what I already said..

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5 minutes ago, [83][GT]PFC_Chaz said:

Would we be able to possibly get humvees back soon?

 

How about you look into why they removed in the first place. That will probably give you your answer.

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That heli is Mil Mi-8MTV5 with ramp of Kazan helicopter plant, and judging by the presence of LCD screens in the cockpit, its an export version for Afghanistan, China or India, but its cool, Russia might update and include LCD versions to its own army too in future anyway. Never the less, being fan of helicopters I'm all excited for the coming update.

full?d=1514061194

 

 

P.S.: Still have hopes for jets too.

Edited by Hokunin

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5 hours ago, embecmom said:

...

 

No need to worry about commander role. It will be great! You can check out PR or PS to see how it works but i hope it will be done much better in this game (cause there was some limitations on what could be done in BF2 engine). Its seldom used cause not everyone have what it takes to be in that position but when u do have competent commander, round is freaking great!

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36 minutes ago, Disco said:

No need to worry about commander role. It will be great! You can check out PR or PS to see how it works but i hope it will be done much better in this game (cause there was some limitations on what could be done in BF2 engine). Its seldom used cause not everyone have what it takes to be in that position but when u do have competent commander, round is freaking great!

played PS and it works relatively well as a support role and when they call in the bombers/fighters... that is amazing... just knowing how some SLs are in squad with the way they want to take over.. I just hope there is no ability for the 'commander' to restrict the squads somehow.

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I have seen many unreal engine 4 videos of flyiable jets so why cannot we include them into the game after choppers?

Edited by StealthyWarrior

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