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    PlanetQuake | Articles | Interviews | Big Fuzzy Focus: True Combat
   

Big Fuzzy Focus: True Combat
Take a good look at the progress of True Combat beta045 for Quake III realism.
— by Pappy-R


 - click for full size image
Don't get too mellow in this quiet scene. Death is everywhere.

Pappy: What have been the hardest goals to achieve to date, and do you have them licked or still on the drawing board?

Tier: The hardest part was getting into the code. If you know the code and its systematics, nearly everything is possible. Nah, wait, sometimes it is hard to work around the limits the engine sets. But this didn't occur too often.

Coroner: For me, as the coder primary concerned with modeling realism for TrueCombat, the hardest part was to realize that many things are not possible without havin' excess to the Q3 engine. Q3 is an extremely modifiable, state of the art engine, though we hadto realize that it is not possible to add some very important realism features as a mod team, limited to modification on the Q3 virtual machine. It is our challenge, hopefully together with other realism mod teams, to get such basic features as additive dynamic light and a better sound system out of id's hands.

Pappy: Was it difficult getting a team together, and are you still looking for help?

Tier: Uhh...yes, in the beginning, we were just two guys working on the mod. It took us a long time to get things started and get other people into the boat. But the hardest part is not getting the team together, but to hold it together. Team coordination isn't the easiest thing to do and doing it over the net doesn't make it easier. I think, we lost some time due to the "normal" coordination problems every Virtual Team should know.

Coroner: Yeah, I guess, TeamTerminator has ironed out now, using the frictional heating we had in the past. The team is now ready for take-off and the release of .45 should kick-start future projects. The most important thing is that TeamTerminator is still a small team and we definitely need some backup ...

Kyle: It seems that halflife and counterstrike monopolized must of the talented skinners and models. Whenever I see Anderins (existence mod)*plug* work on the old HL engine I can't help but be totaly blown away, it's just incredible the quantity and quality of models there are avilable to counterstrike, everyone knows that one of our biggest issues was getting all weapons skinned, that said, YES we are looking for talented individuals who are willing to help us out (skinners, mappers, model makers, etc...) just drop me a line at swat@planetquake.com or use our TC PR forum.

We had some team members gone MIA ( Jolly*Boy where u at dawg?) but to me Team Terminator is the best team I ever worked in, they could be doing a pokeman mod and I would still stick with them, thanks to True Combat I had the honour and the pleasure of meeting people like N'tec and Five*elle from such distinct places like Turkey and South Africa, people that I'm lucky enough to call friends now and that I'd possibly never met if it weren't for True Combat. For me the strenght of true combat is the team behind it... sure there are the occasional fights and diss's and some team members (namely me) are hands down hard to take but y'know what? at the end of the day there's nothing but respect and love ( in an all hetero way ) between team members, the whole Internet could go down tomorrow and I'd still remember them all...

Pappy: What do you think are the strongest points or features about your project that will attract players?

Tier: For me, the strongest point is the overall realism we achieved so far. The maps, the models, the sounds and the play physics all add together to a really great and immersive experience. If you are into realism in FPS, you should definitely take a look at TrueCombat. Another point that I am very proud of is the fact, that there are many different styles to play TrueCombat. We don't have fixed classes or something like this, but you can choose the way you want to play it via the equipment you take with you. Sniper, sneaker, or Rambo...it's up to you to choose.

Pappy: How open do you think you are to community suggestions, and have there been many?

Tier: As I said before, the fact that we released our betas early and often until 0.41 gave us a good impression of what the users liked and what just didn't work right. There has been very much influence from the community so far (just remembered the ever-lasting question about the crosshair )and we are not going to change our policy in this aspect. If you have ideas you would like to see in TrueCombat or something really makes you go mad, just post in our forum. This way, your opinion isn't lost, but chances are that we will do it..

Coroner: We had a big history of public 'babysteps' before we reached beta .41. And in fact TrueCombat changed its appearence a lot from he very first beta to the now public .41. Since our team grew that time and there were many ugly things that had to be changed (like the unskinned weapons in .41) we stopped the babysteps and worked for a bigger one. In the end we implemented a lot of community induced changes and ideas in .45. After the release of .45, I would like to do more babysteps again. At the moment, the community and the TrueCombat fans are quite unhomogeneous and part of the people expect TrueCombat to become a CS like game, others are heading for ultra realism, the third part for action. We will never be able to satisfy all of them, though we try to learn from the constructive criticism we get, that's what a mod is for.

Pappy: Why did you choose the Quake 3 engine for your work?

Tier: Coroner and I are hard core Quake players. When Q3A came out, we decided to make a mod for it. Q3:Terminator. The rest is history. We looked at other engines or games, like Kingpin and Unreal Tournament which would have been a great help in making TrueCombat, but we are just used to Quake and like the way it is build. And if you look at our screenshots, you will have to admit that the Q3 engine can still impress people visually..

Coroner: Uhh, ... actually, I started building maps long ago and decided for the Q-series cause of the quality and stability of the tools. I didn't ever really played 'vanilla' Q3. However, I bought the metal box edition, ..., yes, call me a hard core Quaker.

Kyle: There are so many games out there based on the q3 engine (american mcgees alice 2 name one), I think Id really managed to create a solid and impressive game engine. But all this talk about engines its kinda stupid, just look at Counterstrike it uses quake1s engine (Hl is based on the q1 engine not q2, modified q1 but still q1) and it still kicks ass, Content over style baby.

Pappy: If you could have anything you want happen with the project, what would that be?

Tier: Hmmm...difficult question. TrueCombat going commercial one day would be a blast, but at the moment I would really like to see TrueCombat presented at QuakeCon this year. Ohh, and I want to meet JC from id software one day, if this could be possible. Not to get down on my knees to praise him as the one and only holy programmer god, but to talk to him about engines, computer graphics, building up families...

Coroner: ... , dunno what you mean with building up families in this context? I want to reach a degree of realism and quality unseen in any mod before.

Kyle: No high expectations here, I know how life goes and I have both feet on the ground.. I just wanna have fun with this and meet new people online, a big shout to Choppi, lt.frag,chatt... everyone all around the worllllllddddd...

On a side not and completely unrelated topic I just want to assure everyone out there that there is nothing but respect and friendship between Team Terminator and silicon ice development. Certain individuals with 2 much free time on their hands went in our forum to trash Urban terror and went to the Ut forums to trash TC. I had the pleasure of meeting Gottabekd and wetwired and they are good people and I wish only the best for them and their mod, as someone who played UT2 and Tc45 I see that the 2 mods dont compete with eachother but compliment each other since they are so different. Some people just have the utmost lack of respect for mod teams not being able to see that we are loosing our time and money developing something for them and just have the need 2 start sh*t between everyone, well you better take a quick attitude check or as mr.Durst said " you'll get knocked the f*ck out..."

Take Care & Peace.


Related Links:
  True Combat
  True Combat Central
  Team Terminator Forums


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