As we are a relative small team, we takes small steps. But sometimes, we takes huge steps. Yesterday we did! And we want to share that with you. We gained access to the new Steam Direct, which brings the game at least a quarter mile closer to a first release.
A first release?! WAIT WHAT?!?! Yep! We have been very clear since the beginning; we don't want to bring you the next AAA title, but deliver a great a fun game - name it an arcade online shooter. We named it Tactical Operations. With longer gunfights, easy control on the ground a in the air - both on the arcade side. With real weapons, in realistic settings - both on the known realistic online shooter. Back to the game. Yes we have been testing (read playing and enjoying ourselves) every Tuesday with a few dedicated guys. Bugs reported get fixed within a week, and the next tuesday we have a new build of the game. Small team you say? Yes, but very effective and dedicated.
Since the month is August already and this is the first news since June... you might have guessed that we have had a small vacation dip in our activity. In case you want to check on that activity; throw out a call on our Slack channel or / and join the forums!
For now we go back to testing and developing the game. Release of a first version is close by! Keep visiting us!'
Here are 3 shots of the overhaul on the lighting on maps, you might recognize MAP-Scope and MAP-Blister. The forest-alike map is called MAP-Prelude and is an escape scenario. More to follow soon!
Quick update on our previous news item (Opportunity to join the team). Days after posting this call-to-arms, one from our community joined in the new role: Satansboss. He is taking (excellent) care of the bug-tracker updates, a better workflow between alpha-testers and the development team.
Thanks to Satansboss we also got in contact with Raz, who made a music score for the game (and more to follow). He will also be working on general sounds for the game and voice acting! Do note that we are still looking for someone to do PR and Media for the game! In case you are in doubt or want to talk about the role, please feel free to contact us! Through Slack, Forums, Email – your choice!
Our coders have been eagerly waiting on the release of the new Unreal Engine (4.16.0) and we have moved on to this new version. Biggest improvement here is the complete new audio system (alpha stage still – but already impressive). The engine update further came with some nice small fixes. For a full update on the engine: Link to EPIC website
So, it’s a long time since a news post. Not to worry, things are still moving ahead for Tactical Operations (or just TO4 for the geeks). We still aim to make that beast of a tactical shooter that will keep you up all night to play with friends!
Sadly we had some issues with mostly the performance of the game. Since we target not only the full-blown gamers with their high-price PC’s (I confess I am one of those…), we need to balance the performance on as many hardware as possible. For that we also have our alpha-testing team, so thanks to them we quickly found out that our game was to hardware hungry. We needed to tone down a bit, it’s only 2017!
So far we have had around 10 internal builds with the alpha team, sometimes we need a little more time to give new content or fix bugs, sometimes we have a brilliant solution and want that out directly after testing. And sometimes we simply scale something wrong that needs fixing… (yes that happens.. WIP people!)
Slowly on the better weather is also coming in on our team, so we had the first sunburns, hangovers and heathen up pc’s. Th120 pc’s gave him the finger and it took some time getting the new CPU and most important thermal grease (last time he ordered something from amazon I think). But now he’s back on, hooray! Macfrog has been working hard on further fleshing out the build procedure for our game. In theory this means that even I could start a new build for the testers. In theory yes, because I tend to break things. Speaking of breaking things; I broke the performance on some maps, badly. After several evenings work we are back in the game. As I type this news post, a new build with better performance is cooking, getting ready to be tested. Not really a problem, we have a lot of fun during our testing sessions. Gameplay feels good! Stuff is coming together!
Furthermore we have a more vibrant forums every day. A lot of familiar faces are registered and leaving a message. The constant question, when can I play this game, is still not annoying – it’s a good sign, people like to play the game!
On Slack we also see more people appear, great! We leak screenshots from time to time on that medium. Takes longer for the screenshots to appear on the website or forums. Just a hint… just a hint! And how to get to Slack, follow this: to-public.slack.com And how to get to the forums? Really? You made it to the website, the forums is there also!
For now that’s it. A good sign of progress hereby; a snippet from the update report 2 builds ago
Awesome news! The closed alpha will take place in only a matter of days!
We have send a total of 16 invitations to people we know, 50% people who played Tactical Ops and 50% people who are not familiar with the game. We want to create that unique strategic, arcade kinda feeling that people just love - no matter their backlog of games.
The closed alpha will take place for an unknown period of time. Why? Because we have clear milestones on what we want to achieve for the first open alpha version of the game. We need to tackle a few very tricky things in order to make the game fun and feel right. That means a lot of balancing. ... and we do take that process pretty serious!
As a development team we will keep you updated of our process, post screenshots, bad results (naming and shaming HELL YES) and our route forward. If you want to stay on top of the action; do join our public Slack channel (easy to use on pc / mobile device) and / or our Forums! We are pretty happy with our progress and the game as it is, and we don’t mind sharing that with others through this channel.
See you on Slack and stay tuned for more news!
ps. a little WIP screenshot to keep everyone happy :)