News

chr

chr

We are close!

TacByte

Hello and welcome to our Devblog #14. As you might know, we expanded our testing to include the First100 Discord group, so let's talk about the impressions the players had and what we have changed as a result of your feedback. Furthermore, we can introduce some new weapons, a new map, some gameplay changes, and a new voice chat. So let's dig in.

The First100 Playtest

TacByte

When we invited "thefirst100" to be testers, we also created a Feedback channel in our Discord, this channel is still open and anyone can read the feedback there. If you are part of the First100 and have not given feedback please think about giving the game another try and giving us your honest review, we really wanted to make the reviews public so the community could discuss what changes might be best for TO4.

So what have we learned from the feedback?

Let's go into some detail, one of the main concerns was the audio, for example, weapons are too loud, it's too hard to track footsteps, etc. The good part of this is that we are totally aware of this issue and it was already on our todo list. Why was it like that? The simple answer is, right before we increased the test group we added Fmod Studio (an audio plugin for the unreal engine) to our game and it still needs a lot of work. For now, we have re-balanced the audio and changed mixing levels so the game should sound a lot better, Feedback from those changes have been very positive.

Player damage feedback was also mentioned, an example of this is, if you get damaged it could be difficult to pinpoint where the shot had come from, are they behind me or left? Our game is all about being able to react quickly when someone is shooting you, but this is difficult when you don´t know where they are shooting you from. However, with the better audio balance and changes to TO4's damage indicator you see now clearly from which direction you got shot. With these changes, we have also added hit sounds that indicate you have hit your target and also visual confirmation of a hit via a hit marker on your target. Both are optional but this will give those that want it even more feedback about what´s happening around them in the game. So the way TO4 gives players feedback has improved a lot but we know the audio is something that will need more work in the future to be at a standard we will all be happy with.

The buy menu, options menu, and the UI design was another issue, they are not exactly what we envisioned either and don't look as good as they should. But we wanted to focus on the functionality of the menus first. We are planning a complete UI overhaul sometime in the future, also, we found out our buy menu is not as self-explanatory as it should be, so maybe that will change sooner, rather than later.

Damage and armor balancing was another topic you raised, we will be working on this continuously during development until every weapon feels correct for its use. We appreciate all the feedback about it, we have already made some adjustments.

Some people disliked the speed of the game, others disliked the visuals, to those people we thank you for your candor. The majority of players enjoyed the game. If you did dislike the game hang around, the game is not finished yet and hopefully, you will like it in the future when it is in a more finished state. Thank you to everyone who has tested the game and left feedback, we really appreciate it.

So what's next?



Big closed Alpha with Discord Members

Tacbyte

We announced in Discord and in our recent live stream, that we will be inviting everyone in our Discord group to play the game and join in testing TO4. We haven't announced a solid date yet but if everything goes to plan we want to do this before July 2019, currently we are still on track to achieve this. As always we will communicate in Discord if we encounter any issues that could change our ETA. We do have one hurdle on the horizon, it is an upcoming Unreal Engine update that is especially important for our project. The reason why this update is important is we had to implement a limit to the client side FPS due to a problem when the client FPS got over 144 FPS there are some strange glitches and stuttery gameplay, the next update should solve this issue, so cross your fingers for us, we hope that the update will work flawlessly but you never know. If everything works as intended we will have potentially about 1000 Players from our Discord group with access to the next round of TO4 testing but, that could be a lot more if some of the 5000~ Steam users that have our game on their Steam Wishlist also join our Discord before the next round of testing starts. You can still join our Discord group to secure a place in the next round of testing. Discord is working really well for us on this project, it gives us that direct and instant communication to the community, enabling us to give you feedback and information about our current progress. This should be the last round of testing before we release TO4 on Steam's Early Access platform fully.

New Map

Ssswing

Ssswing has been working on a new map called Fueled, Inspired by community requests, this map will be bigger than other maps and will be a Bomb Scenario map. It is still only a work in progress but has been added to the game to test layout and gameplay. Check out the recent Screenshots he has supplied us.

FOV Slider, Voice Chat, Sniper Overlay and Character Speeches

DarkSoe & TH120

We have implemented an ingame Voice chat currently limited to your own Team, with this feature we also added some dropdown menus to the scoreboard screen to mute players, you can also mute the text chat. Furthermore, you can check their Steam profile. Our first sniper reticle had a crosshair with a red dot in the center, players disliked it so we removed the dot and now you just have the crosshair. We have also started to add voices to the characters, both male and female characters will have their own unique voices.

New Weapons

Slayer5530

Slayer5530 has prepared new animation sets for some of the new weapons in TO4. We have added a FAMAS, MAC10 and a Vector to the arsenal, audio still needs some work but the animations are done and implemented to our game. Whether these weapons will be in the main loadout or if they will be optional for our TO4ST weapons has not been decided yet, but for now, they are included in the main game for testing purposes. You can see them in action in our latest Livestream. Furthermore, he is close to finishing the M40, you will love it!

Grenades

TH120

Our grenades are deadly and can instantly kill you, so we decided to limit each player to one grenade for now. We want to add more explosives types, so you maybe can have a grenade and another explosive Item in the future, this is not a final decision. Furthermore, the grenades should now be flying smoother in the air and look less jittery.



Building Changes

macfrog

Macfrog has once again changed our game file building process, this change allows us to publish updates faster and helps to speed up the bug fixing process, instead of building the Windows client, Windows server, Linux client, and Linux server all at once, we can now exclude components from the build process. For example, we can exclude both the Linux server and client builds, this means we are now just building the Windows versions of the game cutting the build time in half, as most of the work on TO4 is done in windows we can then test the windows versions in-house before pushing the update or fixes to all the branches, then releasing the new files to the test group for further testing, if the build fails for whatever reason we've not wasted too much time. This lowers our iteration time by a good 50% or more, this will be vital once we are live on Steam for fixing bugs and getting Hotfix patches out as soon as we can.



Latest Livestream

TacByte

Here is a link to our last Livestream on Twitch, which features most of the thing we have written about here in this Blog, including the new weapons and their animations and more. So why not click the link and take a look?



Final Words

TacByte

So that's it for now, we will keep you updated. If you wish you can join our Discord by clicking this link.

Thank You

TacByte

Stresstest

TacByte

Hey everyone, we hoped you all had a great Christmas day and are continuing to enjoy this festive season, we said in our last devblog that we were going to start an internal stress test in December, yesterday that happened and we invited thefirst100 group from our Discord group to test the game. This test should help us to estimate an Early Access release date for everyone.

We keep you updated!

Enjoy the rest of your holidays from the Tacbyte Team.

Going Forward!

TacByte

Hey everyone, welcome to our devblog #13. Before we delve into the blog we want to say that despite the lack of DevBlogs we are still developing the game, we are investing a lot of our time and effort into this project and we are getting ever closer to an Early Access release date.

If you would like more information then you should consider joining our Discord server, there we will answer your questions and give other updates about our development. Currently, we have 750+ Members, so come and chat with us.

Closed Stresstest

TacByte

Let's start with some good news. In our Discord, we have the "TheFirst100" group (The first 100 Members to join our Discord server) and this group will get access to the game in December 2018. This means we can open the game to a larger testing group and they can finally play the game, we know it took such a long time. If this test goes well and our systems are robust enough we will expand the testing group sometime in the new year. We are sorry that we can´t grant access to everyone right now, Please remember this game is not finished or nearly finished yet, we've invested a lot of time getting TO4 to this point and now its time to allow more players to try/test our game with us, We are looking forward to having more people giving us their views and or criticisms of the game. Primarily opening our game up to a bigger group will enable us to test the performance of our servers/clients under a heavy workload. This test should also show assist us to balance our maps and help us to make adjustments where needed. More details will come when we are close to the test.

TacByte team changes

Jack M & Skyline

Our Discord members have already noticed that we have two new members "Skyline" and "Jack M" in our Tacbyte Crew. Some people maybe recognize "Skyline" due to the fact he was part of the project in its early stages, "So welcome Back Skyline". Now we have 3 coders, that's awesome news for us at TacByte, furthermore, he is familiar with the project and he has already started working on the game. Jack M is our Sound designer, he prepares and edits the projects Sound files so they can be implemented into the game, up to yet we didn´t have a Sound designer and we are glad that "Jack M" has joined our crew "Welcome Jack M". The full potential of his sound design will come out when we have added FMod to the game. We are still working on that.

The unraveling of a planetary sized constricted ball of hair aka our Code

TacByte

That's how Skyline described our code, of course, it isn´t as bad as it sounds, but it is kinda funny and worth repeating in the blog. This is just a part of our development when we started this project our knowledge of Unreal Engine 4 wasn´t as good as it is now. We grew with every problem we solved. So some parts of the code that are working need to be rewritten, in the end, it's better for all of us, a clean code will help us when problems arise, then we can find and fix them easier and quicker. There was also a tremendously work at the code that was put in by TH120 & DarkSoe, it's not possible to show that, but you will feel it when the game will run buttersmooth in the end. The Viewers of the last Livestream saw that we suffered a lot of server crashes, that has now been fixed, small error big impact, however, there are plenty of bugs left to fix/find, so let's leave that to our Dev team and Alpha-Testers, On a side note we would like to thank the active Alpha Testers for their work on TO4, Thank You. Now let's move on to some new Features that have been added to the game. Main Menu, Crosshair Editor, Shell-Out, Gameplay

Main Menu, Crosshair Editor, Shell-Out, Gameplay

DarkSoe & TH120

The Visual of the Main Menu remains the same but the plugin that we used has been replaced with our own code, now it's our own Menu, we wanted to hold off replacing it but we had a lot of complications working with the old menu plugin so we thought no time like the present. We have also added a Basic Crosshair Editor, nothing super fancy but it does the job for now. We have also added an alternative Weapon Hud, some of our Alpha Testers liked it some didn't. Take a look at the picture. We added a Shell-Out animation to all our Weapons, so when you're firing a gun you see the empty shell ejected from the chamber and the shell falls to the ground and remains, it also makes a sound when it collides with the terrain. Fine tuning is still needed but it works and gives the weapons a better feeling. We made some gameplay changes to the hacking and bomb scenarios. Now you can defuse or hack (same panel) with a maximum of 2 players at the same time to speed up the hacking or defusal. This is only something we are testing and we are not sure if it's a good idea or not. What do you think?



Map work

Ssswing

The maps Scope and Blister suffered from some scaling issues and didn't match the performance we needed for the game. Our new versions have Tacbyte's own style, they are a lot bigger and the performance of the maps has been greatly improved. All of our Alpha testers are really happy with these changes, since the gameplay on it improved drasticly. It is difficult to do comparison screenshots because both the maps are really different now, but take a look at the pictures from November 2017 and November 2018.
Check out our Media Section (High Resolution), we have recently updated it with new Screenshots, or just check it here below (Low Resolution).

Blister November 2017 (OLD)



Blister November 2018 (NEW)



Scope November 2017 (OLD)



Scope November 2018 (NEW)


The Map-Prelude had some minor visual changes. It's now a more damp forest, with reflective pools, muddy tracks and a more tense feeling to it.

Prelude November 2017 (OLD)



Prelude November 2018 (NEW)


We are also happy to mention a new map (WIP name: FollowTheMoney), its a smaller map focused on 2vs2 and 3vs3 gameplay. The mapshots are from a very early moment. In the mean time we are working on RapidWaters and Converge to increase performance and gameplay on these maps.

FollowTheMoney (NEW MAP)



New Weapon Animations

slayer5530

Slayer made you some new Eyecandy to look at and the Special Force finally gains its correct MP5, our Silenced MP5A2 is out and the original MP5SD is in, we know you wanted it, obviously the Terrorist still have the MP5A2.

M16



SSR Mk20



Aug



MP5SD



Introducing TO4ST

DarkSoe & TH120

TO4ST is our "Tactical Operations 4 Server Tool" this addon to the admin panel will enable the server owner to configure the server in many ways, for now, DarkSoe has been working on TO4ST Weapons. So you can create Servers that allow or disallow certain weapons on the server, as an example, you could set up a server which ONLY allows Sniper rifles and Pistols, TO4ST will also Auto Buy set items at the beginning of each Round. Currently, you can only make these changes in the Servers Config file, but this will change in the future and this function and any future admin functions/options will be added to the Admin Tab. We can´t wait to see Desert Eagle only servers again.

Final Words

TacByte

We hope you enjoyed our Devblog and we hope we took away some of your concerns or doubts about out develoment, we are steady working at the game. Some more news about this very soon. Again we mention: feel free to join our Discord channel and join our growing community!

Thank you

TacByte

Not a Devblog

TacByte

Hi everyone, I just want to say that this is not a devblog it's an update on what we are up to and what is happening with the development of TO4. We are still having problems with the latest UE4 update. As usual UE4 updates can be good, bad or both, this one has been a really bad one for our project. We have sorted out most of the problems on our side, but there are still some issues remaining we are having difficulty fixing, fortunately, we are not the only development team with these problems and it is looking like it could be a bug in the Unreal Engine. Hopefully, these problems will be fixed soon.

Because we don´t know when these issues will be fixed and the problems have slowed our development, we have to consider a workaround and try to find different solutions to avoid issues like this in the future. Sadly this means that we will have to invest our time into something that we won´t need later on, right now we feel like we are moving two step forward and then we are forced to take one step back.

We said this should be the last Engine update before we enter Early Access. We would like to stick to that but with these current problems and some sound issues within the current 4.20 build. We will most likely be upgrading again when UE 4.21 is released, we hope that by upgrading to 4.21 it will fix several of issues and give us a more stable engine for TO4.

Even with these problems, we have been working on other areas of development, we have reworked a lot of include paths paths in our game code, we spent a tremendous amount of time analyzing and fixing build issues and bugs. We fitted a new graphics card in our build server without it game builds were impossible. A massive change we have made is now our devs can create Local builds, that means our team members can do test builds without uploading them to the Steam dev branch. Somethings just don't work within the editor and need to be tested once fully compiled (not using the unreal frontend), as you can imagine this is going to help us a lot with both development and workflow. We are continuing to climb this Mountain with your support! This is just another small Hickup on our journey. Hopefully, we won't have too many more.

From all of us on the TacByte Team, we thank every one of you for your continued support and patience.

Recruitment

TacByte

Hey, everyone, we have some news that I'm sure some of you will be excited about.

We are having another Alpha-tester recruitment drive! We want to recruit between 20 to 30 new Alpha-testers, this will be the biggest recruitment we have done so far and most likely the last one before we open testing to thefirst100 group. (planned for this year)

Please don´t apply just for the chance of getting a sneak peek at the game, that will only slow our development, we need enthusiastic active people that really want to bug test and to do stress testing with us. So please, if you don`t have the spare time or you are not committed to submitting bug reports don't apply, also consider that you could be taking the place of someone who really wants to help out and has spare time.

If you would like to be an Alpha-tester for our game you will have to join our Discord server and fill out the form in #apply_for_alpha_2 channel, you will also need an activated account on our Website

Thank you!

Number #12!

chr & kulan

Welcome to our new Devblog, in this blog we will talk about our release plans, introduce a new member to our team "ojl10", we have an update on TO4's weapon list and some screenshots of some Models and Weapons. So let's get directly to most frequently asked question first and then on with the rest of the blog.



Early Access 2018?

TacByte

Everyone wants to know when the game will be available at steam, so here is a summary. We can´t announce a definite release date, however, we do set our own targets within the development team and our current plan is to start some kind Early Access or a larger Closed Alpha at the end of 2018. We are on track to achieve this target date, on the downside there are still some aspects of the development that we can´t predict a timescale for, as an example of this Anti-Cheat, how long will it take to discuss (with the provider) and implement the Anti-Cheat and to be honest, we've never done it so we are not sure, we can only speculate. So this is not a confirmed date, problems could arise that we didn´t account for. We will keep you informed as best we can to any changes that might alter the target date, in a future Devblog closer to the end of 2018 we will inform you of our release strategy in more detail. We believe we can attain this target and we thank you for your continued support!.

Linux Client? wait I mean Server don't I?... Both!

macfrog & th120

Yes, you have read correctly, we really have been working on a Linux version of both the Server and Client for TO4, The first iteration is now complete and both server and client are running. We will ship the Linux Client as an unsupported version of the game (for now), this means if there are problems or bugs we will be prioritizing the Windows version above Linux (sorry Linux people). A lot of people prefer to run a Linux based OS on servers to save the cost of a Windows license. So we are really happy that we can supply Linux Server files, this should make the cost of running or renting a server cheaper once the game is released. There are still a few small issues to sort out, but overall both are working better than expected for a first iteration. The Linux client will be available from the Linux Version of Steam. Here are some pictures so you don´t think we are fool around.



Weapons Line-Up

TacByte

It really took us some time to decide what weapons we will have in TO4, but finally, we can present an almost complete list, there still might be a couple of changes but we don't think anything major will change. Take a look, we have replaced some of the weapons.

Pistols

  • M9
  • Glock 22
  • Desert Eagle
  • Stealth Hunter (Raging Bull Substitue)
  • P250 (optional)

SMG & Shotgun

  • Vector (SMG II Substitute)
  • MAC 10
  • Remiberg (Mix of Remington and Mossberg - we dont have a better name for it)
  • Saiga 12
  • SPAS 12
  • MP5A2
  • MP5A2 Silencer (MP5SD Substitute)
  • MP7 (optional)

AR & Sniper

  • M4A1
  • M16
  • AK47
  • AUG (SIG Substitute)
  • SCAR SSR (MSG 90 Substitute)
  • M40 (Parker Hale Substitute)
  • M4/M203
  • MK18 (optional)
optional = These could replace a weapon listed above or be added as additional weapons to the list. For now, they are not in-game.

As you see we are still missing a scoped Assault Rifle and we haven't decided which Light Machine Gun we should use. The M60 could have its comeback or maybe it will be the M249. We have also talked about whether we should use the SKS instead of the SCAR SSR, in the end, the team decided to pick the SCAR. One weapon we definitively didn't want to use was the AWP/AWM, that's not a weapon we think you want to see in TO4, we think the M40 is a good choice. Are we making the right choices?

Weapon Animations

slayer5530

The whole team loves slayer5530's weapon animations and we always look forward to him presenting us with new ones. We are really glad to have him on our team. There are a lot of new Animations he has made, but sadly due to holidays, they didn´t make it into this blog but we should be showing you some new animations within the next few weeks. As a taster here is our new M9 Model, take a look.

New M9



Robin replaced the Pizza box!

robin

Our Modeler robin finished the bomb model and slayer5530 rigged it for our game. It's now ingame and only missing the planting animation, which is WIP.

So if you had hopes that the Terror team would keep delivering pizza at a Bomb spot or you loved the idea of RP'ing a Pizza delivery person, robin is the one you want to complain to. If you wondering why we keep referring to it as a Pizza Box, here is a delivery in progress which will explain.

Pizza box



TO4 Bomb Model


robin has also been modeling an M40 Sniper Rifle for us. This means we will have our own unique Model. As you know we do currently use a lot of Marketplace assets/content within TO4. However, we are actually proud to have this one made from scratch using a high poly model for reference we bought. Creating good models can take a lot of time so it's currently impossible for us to create bespoke models for all our weapons. Maybe in the future. Here are some screenshots of his work in progress. What do you think about it? let us know in the comments section.


Discord Notifications

chr

I don´t want to ping everyone with everything we publish, so in the future, you only be notified with the @everyone function when it's a big announcement that is really important for us to let you know about. Now I have created a new role called "@subscribed", this role will be used on all our discord category "News" from now on. This means if you wish to be notified when we update/upload something to our Social Media Accounts or that News has posted on our Website, you have to give yourself the role "subscribed". If you don't the channel will still be highlighted when something is posted, you just won't get a mention notification.

How to get the role "@subscribed"?

I created a channel called #botspam, just type in that channel "?rank subscribed" that's it. I have also added the rank NA, SA and EU. This will come in handy when we release our game and you look for matches, feel free to join one of them if you wish. So to join either group type "?rank EU", "?rank NA" or "?rank SA".

If you have a request for a different region you can contact me in Discord, to see all available ranks just type in "?ranks"

Last but not least a big Welcome to, ojl10

TacByte

Some of you may already be aware of our new member ojl10, he is joining TacByte as a Modeler- So Welcome aboard ojl10!

Like most of us on this project he has limitations on time he can invest into the project, however, he already created, fixed and changed some in-game models, not everything is visible in pictures, but it really helps us out. In the next Blog we will show some more.

Upcoming Devblog

TacByte

So that is it for now, but expect more news sometime in July. We hope you enjoy your sunny summer holidays with your family and friends, I know that some of Tacbyte team have vacations planned, so bye for now and above all else HAVE FUN!

The delayed #11

chr & kulan

Hi everyone, I know it's been a while since our last devblog and we were trying to publish a devblog monthly, sadly this did not go to plan, be reassured that TO4: Tactical Operations is still in development and the team is working on getting the game to open alpha testing as soon as possible. We have had some bad news over the last couple of months, but on a positive side, we have made some progression in the development of the game. Well on with the blog I guess bad news first.



The Q1 Dream

TacByte

As we have announced in discord sadly we won't be able to release the game for public Steam access in the Q1 of this year and we don't have a date for when we will be able to, we are not going to make the mistake of getting players hopes up with another release date till we are 100% sure we can achieve it, we are trying to be as honest and transparent as possible, but in a development like this there are so many problems that can arise, but when they do we will try our best to inform you.

Our first-person weapon animator slayer5530 left the group early february, this has put a pause on that part of the development, slayer5530 has a lot of stuff going on in his real life at the moment and those must take precedence over any project. This ment we had an issue with manpower, he is now back, however, this outlines one of the major problems with developing a game like this its man-hours, we are not paid for working on this project and everyone on the project is doing it in their own free time, sometimes family life or our 9-5 jobs impede on the time we have free to work on this project, that is something we can't predict. When these problems arise we have to adjust our development plans and this could have massive implications on the development schedule, luckily we have managed to move forward again.

slayer5530 is currently working on the reload animation for the Glock and Beretta, stay tuned!



Builds and upgrades

macfrog

We also had a problem with our main game build server, the issue was a dysfunctional harddrive, game builds were taking up to 16hours to complete, This had massive impact on testing and development speed, Reasontlly we had the opportunity to upgrade our server hardware, macfrog worked on moving all the files and systems we need to the new hardware and integrating it with our current infrastructure, with that problem fixed we can now do a game build in under 2 hours, we have also partnered with a server hosting company we will announce them later on.

Refactoring and bug fixing

th120

If you watched our Stream in January you may have noticed that our game server crashed a few times, that has been tracked down and fixed, On that note, th120 is refactoring the code, for those that don't know Code Refactoring is re-writing the code making it cleaner and quicker but without changing the functionality, this might take a bit of time but in the long run it will speed up development and make future changes and additions to the code easier. Furthermore, the network load of our game was reduced which results in a performance boost, since the game feels smoother, we have also increased our game speed a little to match a more arcade feeling playstyle. We also decided to use Steam's Master server because we had issues via our own and this lays a foundation for steam features like joining friends on a server from your steam friends list or their profile, we also want to use Steam groups for clans/squads, there will still be a way to use Clantags without a Steam group but we think Steam is the best way to go.



Voiceactors

chr

Firstly, this has no priority and is not part of our Early Access plan, however, some sounds are needed for the game and chr started to look for Voice actors and found a female and male vocal actor for our game. The game will have automated sounds triggered by actions and sounds you can trigger via a menu and maybe hotkeys. So you can get a feel for what we have in mind here we have mocked up a quick (not final in any way.) sample.

Fire in the hole!


I´m under heavy attack!

If you want to check some of their previous work you can check out their websites listed below.

CCC from Purple Rogue (female)
Website from Zach Stevens (male)



Music for MAP-Prelude

bluekoala202

bluekoala202 finished his edits on the Track for our MAP-Prelude and its now ready to be implemented to the game. How you like it?

Levelmusic for Prelude by bluekoala202



Wait what, Prelude? Which map was that again? No worries here are some screenshots.

PRELUDE



MP5 Navy Silenced

darksoe

You know our MP5 Navy model, we have now added a silencer for the Special Forces for those stealthy kills. Take a look!



More Rapid Waters Pictures

ssswing & bluekoala202 & chr

After the overwhelming response to our announcement on Facebook about a new map being worked on for TO4: Tactical Operations, chr has created a montage from the newly envisioned Rapid Waters map to reawaken your dreams or nightmares. bluekoala202 gave the video a jungle jingle.



Minimap and VoIP

th120

So we added a Blueprint minimap (WIP) to the game, hopefully, this will help with tactics, If you have time to look at it while bunny hopping.

If you would like to air your opinions on these or any of TO4: Tactical Operations features now is the time to like and follow us on one or all of our social media pages and have your say or directly join our Discord server.

This is Number 10!

chr & kulan

Hi everybody, so it's the first Sunday of the month and it's time for the new devblog. This devblog is more text-based than we normally publish, the main reason is, we have been doing a lot of work on the Backend systems, cleaning up the games current content and editing code. So let's see what some of our crew has been up to.



Steam and Future

macfrog & ssswing

Well, the first steps have been made, for the last week or so the TacByte Crew has been able to play TO4: Tactical Operations on Steam and up to now our TO4 alpha testers had to play the game by downloading the game from one of our servers and loading it using our custom launcher, this has now changed and our alpha testers also have access via Steam, this a huge step towards our open Early Access. Here are some more details and the reasons why this is so important for us, and you.

Macfrog, has been working on the backend stuff for Steam and was able to create an additional Steam AppID for TO4, this means we have now got our main Steam AppID that will be used for our Early Access on Steam and will be opened to you once our closed alpha testing is complete, this will be the one you want to add to your Steam wishlist (http://steam.to4.co). The new Steam branch will be a test branch and will be used for our closed alpha testing and any further Steam tests before public release.

This second steam branch has paved the way for a friendly user test. Wait, what is that?

Firstly, this test will be using the new branch on Steam and it sounds really simple but, trust me it wasn´t, Steam has allowed us to get Steamkeys for TO4: Tactical Operations on our testing branch, with those keys we can now control how many players have access to our game via Steam, if we were to go directly into open Early Access, we would have no chance of controlling the number of players and we are fairly sure our systems are not stable enough or big enough to handle that just yet, also, we are not sure that we have the manpower or infrastructure to react to server failure or a problem quickly enough for general release, we can't predict how many new players will try the game when it pops up on their Steam store. We really want to deliver a working Early Access game, nobody wants to boot up a game to be faced with an empty server list or a game-breaking bug, that would just create a negative impression of our game to people that have not followed the development process. That's why we will do a big closed alpha testing period with friendly users first. What are friendly users? Well, friendly users are Thefirst100 (we have not forgotten about you), people like you and also people in our discord group, the people that have followed us and have given their opinions, help and encouragement during the development of the game up to yet, also, those of you that have given us constructive criticism. That's our friendly user test.

We will be starting this test with Thefirst100 group in Discord soon (see told you we had not forgotten you). If this works as well as intended, we will then send out more keys to our other discord users, then the followers, members, YouTubers, and streamers on our other social media outlets. Please, remember we will still only have a limited number of keys for this closed test, so don't be too disappointed if you don't get one, more will be released at a later date.


Optimizations

th120 & ssswing & darksoe

Th120 was concerned about the performance, so he started to change the blueprints system in the unreal engine to C++, collectively they have also, reworked all the lighting on the maps from a dynamic lighting system to a semi-static lighting system, as player shadows are quite important for gameplay the team decided not to use full static lighting for the game, while testing, we also found a bullet impact effects that dropped the framerate quite drastically, they have now replaced that, while they were fixing that, they also took the opportunity to add some dedicated impact sounds that were missing. They have just finished these modifications and the first results are very satisfying. These changes have made TO4: Tactical Operations run a lot smoother and also at a higher frame rate, as with all competitive games, the higher frame rate the better. Optimization is an ongoing process and we will try to squeeze as much performance as possible out of the game without affecting graphical quality or playability.



Elvis (it's not the real one, he's still with the aliens)

So, firstly, a big welcome to Elvis (Graphical Artist), Elvis sent us a mock-up of a new UI for TO4: Tactical Operations and we really liked it, he will be working with the team to see if his vision of the UI can be implemented to the game.

What do you think?

Final Words

TacByte

There is still a lot of work left to do, but we are getting closer, Do you know any friends that might like the game? Please if you have not already done so, add TO4: Tactical Operations to your steam wishlist (http://steam.to4.co) and ask your friends to do the same!

DEVBLOG #9



Back in business!

Hi everybody, we are back with our first Devblog of 2018. We hope you had a great Christmas and an outstanding new year. So let's get on with the blog.

Early Access

TacByte

We are on target for our release to Steam's Early Access, we also want to release a quality product and a solid foundation for the game. From that foundation, we the TacByte team with the help of you and the community can make the game we all really want to play. we also have to be realistic, we are developing the game voluntarily in our free time and have real-life commitments jobs and families etc. Right now we can offer a really fun playable gaming experience which will only improve over the course of the development process. Currently, we are solely focused on creating that solid foundation before we release the game via Steam's Early Access. As always we will be transparent about the development, our triumphs, and our failures. Please be aware, if we do have a very good reason to postpone the EA release to increase the quality of the game or to fix major bugs/problems that may arise, we will do but reluctantly. But if that does happen, we will let you know immediately.

So here is what we want before we release the game on Steam for Early Access, it's like a glimpse of our roadmap for this stage of the development.

The Game...

  • to be downloadable through steam
  • to updates through steam
  • to have the following Gamemode: Team-Deathmatch
  • to have the following Scenarios: Hostage Rescue, Bomb Scenario, Hacking and Escape.



The Servers

We will launch official servers and also to have a selection of private servers (servers ran by players) to help cover more areas and so we have enough servers for player demand. We can confirm that we will have plenty of TacBytes servers located in Germany and we will have at least two servers in North America. This means you won't be able to run a private server on Day 1 of Early Access, but, we will be releasing a server pack via SteamCMD as soon as we can. There will also be a Linux version of the server files sometime in the future.



The Animations

The game will have at least one fully animated weapon for each class, right now, we can confirm both the Desert Eagle and AK47 are completed, we have more weapons that are half done (Baretta, Glock, MP5A2, SPAS12, M4A1) and some if not all will probably make it into Early Access. The MSG90 will be added with or without animations because it uses a scope and is playable without the complete animation. Movement Animations are very basic, they can look stuttery and will need more work, we would like better animations for movement but they can be done while we are in Early Access. 3rd Person Animations: Another one we would like before Early Access but will probably be further on in development. 1st Person Animations: Missing Weapon animations will be added one by one and get patched in with our updates these to will more than likely done after we have released on Steam.




Daily Builds and Engine Update

We have completely changed the process of building the server/game files, we now generate new server/game files every night, With this, we can directly react to the Alpha testers, implement a fix or add content and see the results the next day, this rapid iteration of builds should make the development process a lot quicker, also, The Unreal Engine was recently updated, we have also updated our game and are now developing using the newest version of the engine.



Polishing and Features

  • Overhaul of our Main menu (done)
  • Overhaul UI´s (WIP)
  • Overhaul Buymenu (WIP)
  • Overhaul Server browser (WIP)
  • Recoil System (WIP)
  • Female Skins (done)
  • Skin Selection (done)
  • Integrated Music (WIP)
  • New Buy Menu (WIP)
  • Fixing Bugs (WIP)
  • Map Vote (done)


We do have more things we would like to show and talk to you about, but, as a lot of you might know we planned a live Stream a while ago but we had to cancel it, we still really want to show you the game live, So!, why not join us on our live stream on Sunday 21-1-2018 and we will talk more about Early Access and our development plans then. We will be making the Stream available afterward via YouTube, VOD by Twitch or on some other platform so if you miss it you won't have missed out.

Sorry if this feels like a slow start to the year but we are all just getting back to our normal routines and getting back up to speed with the project after the festive season.

New Footage



Desert Eagle Gameplay

TacByte

Hey everybody, we have published a new gameplay video on youtube, we really don´t want that you miss it, so take a look! Also kudos to our alpha tester Valle for playing an awesome Victim!



Female Model

darksoe

The female player model has now been added to the game. We have shared a picture or two on Twitter and Facebook, If you missed them please follow us and you won't miss future announcements. However, If you did miss them here they are for your viewing pleasure, thanks to our alphas valle and hellium for helping out with the photoshoot.

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