New gameplay mechanics.

If you subscribed to our mailing list or if you were at Stunfest 2016, you might have tested our 0.3.4 pre-alpha demo in which you’ve seen new gameplay mechanics. How about a quick rundown?

3 command units

When starting a game, you now have to choose one out of three different command units that will influence your early-game strategy. Their typical use in a team game is highly complementary and allows for smart choices and specialization.

 

Excavator - Sentinel - OUtpost      
Excavator – Sentinel – Outpost

 

The Sentinel is a powerful battle station with a deadly laser turret and heavy armor. Its firepower is sufficient to hold off a small army and defend its base. However, it moves slowly and has a smaller control zone compared to other command centers.

 

The Excavator has advanced mining capabilities: it is able to forage for Sharp Crystal hidden deep underground. Using an Excavator enables production and base development right from the start of a game, even in sectors that lack sufficient resource supply.

 

The Outpost allows for the most versatile base development tactics. It can move faster and has a much larger control zone than other command units. Additionally, its base energy production is much higher, allowing for fast base development. Its wide radar detection range also allows for efficient enemy and resource detection.

Relay antennas

screen_relayantenna

 

Buildings now need to be inside your command zone in order to function. The command zone can be expanded by placing one or several relay antennas on the map. Every player is allowed a limited number of relay antennas.

Actual ballistics in RTS gameplay and why they matter.

Following the « What you see is what you get » principle, Win That War! Relies on accurate physical simulation, rather than precalculated damage and approximations.

Thus, for example:

  • Damage is applied at the moment of a projectile’s impact (not at launch time)
  • Accidental friendly fire is possible
  • Any object that comes between a unit and its target may intercept a projectile.

All units and weapons have their own characteristics. Here are a few gameplay situations that may occur, as a consequence of realistic ballistics.

Ground attacks

Bombers and artilleries have in common the ability to aim at a position on the ground instead of a unit. They aren’t much good at hitting a fast-moving target. Especially effective against buildings, they can also perform barrage shots to deny access to a zone or prevent enemy passage through a bottleneck.

artillery

bomber

Since projectiles take time to reach their target, it may occur that the damage gets dealt after the attacking unit has been destroyed, possibly resulting in mutual kills.

Seeking projectiles

Seeker missiles are able to circumvent obstacles in order to reach a hidden target. This characteristics, in addition to splash damage, makes them very effective in mountains, where they can ambush their targets and deny passage through tight canyons.

missile launcher

On the other hand, seeking projectiles have their limits. Very fast units such as buggies can easily dodge them by moving in unpredictable patterns.

buggy

Lasers

Laser shots are almost instantaneous. This is why a Sentinel unit and its fast-tracking laser turret will easily decimate an army of flimsy buggies.

sentinel

Lasers can be obstructed by terrain obstacles. This is why, given the order to attack, the AI will try to place its laser-wielding units individually to give them an optimal shooting angle without being blocked by friendly units.

It is possible to give a group of units the order to position themselves for an attack on a specific position using the « Aim » command (ctrl+right click).

→ This update, and more on our Kickstarter page.

3 mega-corporations: pick your side!

MEGA_corpo_logos

When taking part in the online campaign in Win That War! you will have a choice to join one of three mega-corporations that confront each other in a perpetual economical and tactical conflict.
You will choose your side according to your own affinity towards a faction’s style, ideals, or preferred strategies. Each faction has a specific upgrade tree, and a story of its own.

ATLAS CORP

illu-cartel-ATLAS

By choosing to run with Atlas, you choose the firepower and expertise in offensive tactics that have proven their worth over many generations. Atlas made the pledge to bring security to all, in a world where, they claim, dissuasive armament is the one way to maintain an ideal state of orderly peace.
Having a background doing business in the paramilitary weapons market, Atlas Corp. naturally has unlimited access to the latest technologies in all things combat-ready. No one would risk an attack on an Atlas base without a carefully elaborated plan, lest they be silenced instantly.

 

N.A.S.C.A

illu-cartel-NASCOM

NASCA’s researchers and engineers are widely known in 43 major solar systems for being part of the highest-operating humanist activists in these parts of the galaxy. By joining NASCA’s ranks, you take a pledge to dedicate your life’s work to creating better worlds for the future generations. Specialized in infrastructural engineering and environment reforming, they claim to strive for the emergence of a “sane and pure version of our world, one that would not include or comprehend conflicts and criminality”.
Note that if the use of military pressure and economical subjugation proves necessary on the way to making the universe prosperous and worry-free, they are resolved to do it out of devotion, so that the people do not have to.

 

JONN GALT CONSORTIUM

illu-cartel-JONN-GALT

As long as men can remember, the Jonn Galt Consortium has always been around. People would probably fail to be surprised if told that Jonn Galt had preceded the universe. Joining the ranks of the consortium means to become a pioneer, and, as the brochure says, to secure a life of prosperity for your own, that would not be thinkable by working for any other private institution.
The rugged workers and experienced industry men that run the JGC have inherited an empire of federated corporations, that excels in the production of lucrative raw materials, thriving thanks to their near-monopoly in ownership of the most fruitful mining facilities, and their exclusive patents on the most advanced extraction hardware.

 

This article (and much more info) is also available on our Kickstarter page.

Our Kickstarter is live!

We’ve just launched our Kickstarter campaign!

To you, our day 1 followers (or if you’re just passing by), who believe in our project: If you do want Win That War! to come into being, well, this is the time to show your support.

now on ks

If you’re not familiar with the concept of a Kickstarter campaign, it’s what is called a crowdfunding platform. You can donate whatever amount you want, and choose to get various rewards depending on how much you donated. In our case, the rewards are (of course) the game itself, plus early access to the Alpha and closed Beta programs. But there’s also a bunch of awesome goodies, such as : the game’s OST, unique in-game badges and skins to pimp your avatar and robots, 3D-printed figures, artbooks …

See the full video on our Kickstarter page.

To us, every action counts ! Just one euro in our piggy bank to show your support, or spreading the news with your friends to make us known, these things mean a lot to us, because getting good visibility during the first days of the campaign is highly decisive to make it a success!

We’re counting on you!

WinThatWar_Kickstarter

Step by Step #1 the Engineer

Moving on with our new blog sections, this time we decided to tease you with some new eye-candy. Down to the real talk, we’re taking you step by step through the process of implementing an asset, from conception to in-game integration.
To inaugurate this section, Michel the engineer bot is going to be our guinea pig.
A few months ago, this is how Michel used to look:

Miche Insane Unity Win That War RTS

Since Nico has recently joined the team, Michel got a little face lift. We kept the same feel but made him a little more bulky for some additional #galacticswag  (please, be sure to use this hashtag in strict moderation and keep it away from children).
If you’re in the process of creating game assets yourself, feel free to share and compare your own workflow down there in the comments. Here is our usual pipeline:

Research.

michel-recherche

Concept.

michel-concept

Model sheet.

michel-model-sheet

3D model.

MICHEL_TURNABLE_FINAL

Well, now we’ll just have to put it in the game, and the good old Michel won’t exist anymore. Don’t be sad, on the inside, he’s still the same!

 

Stand Up! #1

As we were spring cleaning the blog, we’ve decided to bring a few changes and to create new article categories so that we could write more often about various topics related to WinThatWar! and Insane Unity.

This article is kind of a crash test.

As you may know, we’re working using the SCRUM method, which consists in dividing the tasks into “sprints” that we chose to last two weeks to help us we can redefine the priorities as we go along.

Actually, if you’re a SCRUM’s enlightened, you know that it mostly consists in a gigantic white board covered with dozens of sticky notes and a “stand-up meeting” every morning to let everybody in the team know which task is completed or in progress. In our case, every two weeks, we take stock and build a new release of WinThatWar! so we can all test the new features.

From now on, we will be able to write this kind of articles and update you in (almost) real time.

Dev

We know that it’s really frustrating to have to suddenly leave a game for any reason. So we figured we could create the save/load system and it is now perfectly functional, but on solo mode only.

We’re currently setting up the planetary view. Well, for now, it’s still a prototype. A few days ago it was just a spherical skeleton drawn by some neon green laser on Doom’s computer, who may explain how he did it in an article further ahead. By then, we should reveal quite a few enhancements right after the next “sprint”.

vue planétaire

Gameplay

A brand new building will soon appear in the game: the relay antenna. What is this thing? Well, as the name suggests, it will be used to relay the “network” on a given zone. Without this wonderful invention, you’ll be able to build factories, but you won’t be able to switch it on which could be an issue, right? I only can suggest to do your best to protect your antennas.

Arts

As you know (or you will know by reading this article), we’ll be present at the London EGX Rezzed on 7-8-9 April. We already have published the poster and here is the flyer! Hope you’ll like it as much as we do.

flyer winthatwar

Regarding the artistic production for the game itself, no less than a dozen units and buildings have been designed the last couple months (left to right: buggy, tank, diplomat).

conceptsweb

By the way, we’re working on the buggy’s 3D model and you’ll soon be able to create herds of them. They go just so fast!

buggyweb

Sound design isn’t outdone neither. We found a band, that’s now working with us on WinThatWar! original soundtrack, and we’re really excited about it. Plus, most of the sound effects have been reworked and the ambience sounds have been enriched, especially the “Space Ship” theme which, if you wear headphones, gives you more and more the feeling that you actually are in a cock-pit, guiding your robots armies.

To finish this article, remember that if you’re in London the next couple of days, we’ll be present at the EGX Rezzed where you could play a short demo or ask anything you want about the game to Etham and Perik! See you there (in the “Indie Room” area).

egx-map

London, here we come!

For the very first time, WinThatWar! travels!

The EGX Rezzed, will take place in London on April 7, 8 & 9, and we’ll be there! If ever you plan on spending a weekend in London, this is the time. You could come by and say hello!

In the meantime, here is a sneak peek at the poster we made for the event.

WinthatWar-Poster-resize2

I love splines!

 

A curve

In Mathematics, a Spline is a numeric Function that is Piecewise-defined by Polynomial function, and which possesses a high degree of smoothness at the places where the polynomial pieces connect (which are known as knots)“. Thank you dear Wikipedia, I couldn’t have said it better myself.

“But, what link can there possibly be between Splines and Polygons?” you may ask yourself. And that’s a legitimate question, since I usually write about polygons and cake (made from polygons too).

Well, you have to know you can actually create 3D models by using these famous splines. That’s right!

A basic spline

As you may know, I mainly use 3DS Max to model my vehicles, buildings, etc. 3DS  taught me to use the word “spline” to define a 3D Bezier curve when it comes to design.

Actually, It’s a commonly used technique in automotive design. Seeing as I mostly model vehicles, it makes perfect sense for me to be working with curves.

However, I apologize in advance, because somehow, I have the feeling this post will feel like a tutorial.

The 3DS Max “Lathe” tool works just like an actual shaping tool and allows to easily sculpt an object  with a very smooth shape.
So, as an example, I’ve made a pretty bowl for you:

The process to use Lathe modifier.

I’ve got another little trick for you : You also can do what is called a “Sweep”. This is actually a  standard shape that you’ll select and with which you’ll “sweep” the previously drawn curve.  The shape is then multiplied to create the desired object.
Here is another example for you, and be prepared, I went a bit crazy and I’m now modeling…a mug!

The process to use Sweep modifier.

Anyway, now that you see how it works, let’s get serious and I’ll show you how you can apply it to your 3D modeling.

Once, in my student days, I was looking for a tool to model by using Splines, and I finally found a tool called SURFACE. At the beginning, Surface was a third party plugin, then Kinetix eventually bought the licence and included the tool in 3DS Max 3.0. I don’t know who this third-party is, but I owe him a big “thanks”.

Digging through my archives, I found the following model. That’s what it looked like the first time I tried to use this tool, based on three pieces of circles intersecting with each other.

The use of a Surface modifier

How did the software turn this into that? I don’t have a clue. Voodoo magic?
Well, and so… how do you put this technique into practice? Among other things, you can  use these tricks to model a vehicle. An airplane, for example.

Use of spline in modeling

It can also be used for specific organic creations.
Like for this wonderful purple…marshmallow.
I could probably have made something sexier, but you get the idea.

Chantilly

In short, I love modeling using Splines . The tool “Surface modifier ” is probably my favorite, it’s part of the workflow for all my vehicles .

I also think it’s a good starting point to model an object with a lot of rounded surfaces .

However , be aware that Splines, alone, are difficult to comprehend in 3D for our poor humanoid eyes that can’t decide whether a form is curved or hollow. So we will have to get used to the tool and rotate around your model, regularly move the camera angle to visualize the form , and then use the Surface modifier.

If you’re not using this technique already, I can only recommend you try it asap!

Cheers

Philemon

New year, new team, new trailer

Ok, I admit this title is not the most original I could find.
But, you know, the video is speaking for itself:

 

 

Putting aside logos and the lost territories map made from hexagons, everything you see in this video was captured in-game. As you may have noticed, there is a lot of changes concerning the Sound Design. Hey, we told you there was a reason for Jpeg hurting his car.

Next week, the post will be proposed by Philemon, so you can guess it will be a bit artistic one!

One year already

So, yesterday was Insane Unity first anniversary.

illu-birthday

When we first started the project, two and a half years ago, I already knew we would have a lot of work to do, I knew that would take time, and I knew it would be hard to make it real. But, well, we did it: now, Insane Unity team has grown, we’re 10 members, and when I think about all we got through from the start, I admit I’m kind of proud of us, and I’m thrilled. I’m thrilled because I realize that if you’re persevering enough, you actually can make your project comes true.

Yet, we must confess we don’t really have much good reasons to boast: we’re progressing on the game development but it’s not ready to be available on Steam…. yet.
Just one year. It makes me feel like Insane Unity is just a baby, thinking he has already did a lot since he born, but he still has everything to learn about life. And we still have lots of things to learn about being a “company”. Everyday we learn, everyday we do some self-analysis: are we going the right way?

Moving from a 2 members team to a 10 members team actually involves to do self-analysis often: you must be able to accept criticism, from outside and from inside the team, to justify every choice you make puting your ego aside, to trust others and just hand down a lot of all these things you were used to be in charge of. By joining the team, every single new member brings with him some new ideas, as consistent as your own, and as “founders” we have to connect all these ideas, let everybody in the team knows they’re important and necessary, and to make the good choices for the game. We attempt to take this way, and trust me, that’s not that easy everyday. But, after all, designing and developing a game is mostly about humans relationships, isn’t it?

So, in the months to come, I swear you’ll see what this new team is able to do!

Etham

 

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