https://www.openra.net/ OpenRA - News Feed 2018-07-05T20:00:00Z OpenRA developers https://www.openra.net tag:www.openra.net,2018-07-05:/news/map-design-contest-2018/ Map Design Contest 2018 Announcement 2018-07-05T20:00:00Z 2018-07-05T20:00:00Z <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180703-mdc2018.jpg" width="600" alt="Map Design Contest 2018" /></p> </div> <p>Attention, all map designers and modders!</p> <p>It is your time now to show everything you’ve got at the coming Map Design Contest! Between grinding and thoroughly testing competitive 1v1 maps, unleashing artistry and entertainment in casual maps and implementing highly intricate scripting in modded maps, you will have pretty much anything that is possible to be inserted into a map file to be put up for a competition!</p> <p>Well respected representatives of community are induced into the map judging jury that will decide the best of the best submissions in the contest among the categories. Forum attendants are also encouraged to participate in selecting the most popular map of the competition through the Popular Vote which will be held after map submission period is over.</p> <p>The contest starts on July 7th; you will have just more than a month to submit your works for it. Be sure to check all the rules and time regulations at <a href="https://forum.openra.net/viewtopic.php?f=83&amp;t=20573">OpenRA’s new forums</a>.</p> <p>Don’t hold on your creativity, and may the best map win!</p> tag:www.openra.net,2018-06-10:/news/devblog-20180610/ A few development topics 2018-06-10T13:00:00Z 2018-06-10T13:00:00Z <p>Development has slowed down a lot recently, but OpenRA is far from dead. I wanted to write something to bridge the news gap until our next official news post, so here’s a brief update on a couple of recent projects. We hope to ship these plus many other changes in a new playtest series starting in a few weeks.</p> <p>One big change affects how we package and distribute our “official” OpenRA builds on Linux. For many years we have automatically generated a deb package, but then relied on downstream packages for other distributions. This has worked well in most respects, but sometimes delays in updates would strand players on older versions, stopping them from playing online. Another long-standing issue on many distros is the (lack of) support for installing playtests and releases at the same time, as players are able to on Windows and macOS.</p> <p>Our solution to these problems is to adopt the <a href="https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/wiki/Appimages">AppImage</a> packaging format, which allows us to distribute a portable version of OpenRA that should work on most modern Linux distributions. AppImages can exist alongside normal distro packages and even other versions of OpenRA, which makes it perfect for trying out playtest versions without overwriting the stable release. We will be retiring our deb packages and OBS repository as part of this change, but fear not because stable OpenRA releases are also available on <a href="https://flathub.org/apps/details/net.openra.OpenRA">Flathub</a> if you prefer a “proper” installation that integrates more closely with your system.</p> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180610-download.png" width="600" alt="OpenRA Download page" /></p> <p>A sneak-preview of the new download page featuring Linux AppImages.</p> </div> <p>Our modding community has continued to be a major focus, driven in a large part by active discussions with and Pull Requests from the modders themselves. We have recently achieved two major modding milestones which we are looking forward to support from the next playtest:</p> <ul> <li><strong>Feature parity between the Mod SDK and the main OpenRA mods</strong>: the Mod SDK can now package Linux AppImages alongside the existing macOS .apps and Windows installers. Mods now also integrate properly with the online and in-game server lists (no more "Unknown Mod (id)"), and modders can define their own acknowledgements text to be displayed in the in-game Credits dialog.</li> <li><strong>Improved tools and documentation for mod updates</strong>: Updating mods to a newer OpenRA engine has historically been difficult and prone to errors. We have developed a completely new OpenRA.Utility command that significantly improves on the old command for semi-automating the update procedure. More information about this tool and how to use it can be found on the <a href="https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRAModSDK/wiki/Updating-to-a-new-SDK-or-Engine-version">Mod SDK Wiki</a>. </li> </ul> <p>Another major project over the last few months has been identifying and eliminating performance bottlenecks in the graphics renderer. These changes have roughly doubled the FPS that can be achieved on many systems, which is great news for for Tiberian Sun and some of the ambitious community mods where modest systems previously struggled to achieve a stable 60 FPS. It is useful for our default mods too, because less time spent rendering the game means more time is available to smooth over other performance hiccups that can occur during large battles, resulting in a smoother play experience.</p> <p>The main driver for this work has been a project to improve OpenRA’s performance on the latest Raspberry Pi devices. These changes have improved performance from a painful 10 FPS during large battles (using the Red Alert main menu as a test case) to a more tolerable 20 FPS. We are still not happy with performance on the Pi, and have identified several areas in the game code that could be targeted to improve performance further. We hope to be able to officially support a Raspbian release in the future once performance has improved to an acceptable level.</p> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180610-pifps.png" alt="Raspberry Pi Performance" /></p> <p>Renderer improvements (red and orange lines) significantly improve performance on a Raspberry Pi 3B+.<br />The next target for optimisation will be the tick_time (light blue line).</p> </div> <p>The upcoming playtest includes several other great features that I haven’t covered above as well as the usual set of iterative balance tweaks and bug fixes. Keep an eye on the <a href="https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/wiki/Changelog-(bleed)">development changelog</a> and <a href="https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/milestone/20">release milestone</a> over the next few weeks if you are curious about the full feature set and progress towards a release.</p> <p>At the end of May we made the jump to a new forum, splitting away from the old Sleipnir’s Stuff content. See <a href="https://forum.openra.net/viewtopic.php?f=81&amp;t=20549">this thread</a> for more details. This move opens up a number of opportunities, such as resurrecting our plans (which were prototyped and then shelved in 2016 due to lack of web developers) to include an in-game authentication system that can be used to securely identify yourself to game servers and other players, instead of relying on insecure passwords or IP addresses. This may not be completed in time for the next release, but if it isn’t then we plan to make it a priority for the following one.</p> <p>We still receive a lot of questions about a release date for the Tiberian Sun mod, and unfortunately the answer has not changed in the last year: we don’t know, but it won’t be soon unless we can attract new developers with the right skills to help. Progress is still being made on gameplay features (e.g. we recently merged support for placing gates on top of walls, and the special logic for tiberium critters), but a release is blocked by a handful of critical bugs and missing features that cut deep into some of the oldest and ugliest parts of OpenRA’s code. Resolving these issues takes a significant amount of work, and we currently only have one person (with very limited time) with the knowledge required to tackle them.</p> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180610-tibsun.png" width="600" alt="Tiberian Sun mod" /></p> <p>Tiberian Sun progress has all but stalled due to lack of manpower.</p> </div> <p>While the mod is broadly playable, it is still missing some important features (e.g. super weapons) and other important features contain game-breaking bugs (e.g. subterranean units, cloak generators). We would have to disable these features if we wanted to release a public build now (like we did in the early days of Red Alert, Tiberian Dawn, and Dune 2000), and try to rebalance the rest of the game around their absense. This is not a path we want to repeat after our experiences with Red Alert.</p> <p>OpenRA’s Red Alert mod is well known in the C&amp;C community for including a collection of arbitrary gameplay changes that were not in the original game or series. Many of these changes were introduced in the early days of OpenRA to help balance the game and make it play well despite missing core gameplay features (back then these were things like like 5 infantry sharing the same cell or a proper implementation of the “classic” engineer behaviour). Over time, these changes became entrenched, for better or worse, as part of OpenRA’s identity. Many of these changes are considered almost universally positively (e.g. the fog of war, unit veterancy, Flak Trucks), but others have been much more controversial (e.g. Hinds on the Allies, Kill Bounties, re-usable engineers).</p> <p>This dichotomy between “Original Red Alert” and “Original OpenRA” has caused significant conflict among our players and contributors on the forum and the community Discord channels. These discussions were reignited last year by the change to building auto-targeting, and have increased in passion with recent discussions about finding a way to move Hinds back to Soviets and removing Kill Bounties as a default feature. On one side of the issue are thoughts that the RA mod should abandon some of the changes that don’t make sense in the world of Red Alert 1 (e.g. Kill Bounties, but not the Flak Truck) and instead double down on the things that made the Command and Conquer series memorable. On the other side are thoughts that it is exactly these changes that made <em>OpenRA</em> great, and that it is an insult to our community to discard these features motivated by misplaced nostalgia.</p> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180610-hinds.png" width="600" alt="Allied Hind" /></p> <p>The Allied Hind. Hero, or heresy? Let us know what you think about OpenRA’s gameplay changes below!</p> </div> <p>We would greatly value input from the wider OpenRA community on the topic, so leave your thoughts in the comments below or <a href="https://forum.openra.net">on our new forum</a>. The results of this discussion will steer the future direction of OpenRA’s Red Alert mod. Please aim to be polite and constructive; comments that insult or abuse others will be moderated.</p> tag:www.openra.net,2018-03-19:/news/ragls5-and-team-tournament/ Red Alert 1v1 and 2v2 Tournaments 2018-03-19T14:00:00Z 2018-03-19T14:00:00Z <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180317-ragl-V.png" alt="Red Alert Global League Season 5" /></p> </div> <p>Greetings, commanders!</p> <p>Red Alert Global League is rolling yet again, with Season 5 starting on April 2nd. Masters division is as strong as ever this time, with several players returning to the top flight and new promising contestants rising up as well; Minions are split into 2 groups as the single division wasn’t able to hold that many good players. To raise the stakes even higher the map pool now includes mostly new competitive maps so that players are challenged to improvise and develop new tactics and strategies on the battlefields.</p> <p>New players are always welcome to register and take part in the League. It is always exciting to prove your worth against others in a fair competition, and there is also a chance to get some prizes through playing. Be swift on the matter though, as the registrations are to be closed on March 24th.</p> <p>League rules can be found at <a href="http://ragl.org/glforum/?view=thread&amp;id=12&amp;part=1#postid-22">ragl.org forum</a> and <a href="https://docs.google.com/document/d/1-MiyXf7BootBMm4cL811-3kjCYAzsFO3J85JLdEGFMY/edit?usp=sharing">as a googlesheet mirror</a>. Further registration guidelines and current roster are available at <a href="http://ragl.org/glforum/?view=thread&amp;id=11&amp;part=1#postid-19">ragl.org forum</a> and <a href="http://www.sleipnirstuff.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=82&amp;t=20470">on sleipnirstuff</a>. You can also ask anything about the League, find opponents for a match and have a casual chat at <a href="https://discord.gg/UcUztfr">community discord server</a>. <br /></p> <p>If you don’t like small tactical action mano a mano, but rather prefer to feel the support of your teammate as well as the heat of the battle, there is a new 2v2 Team Tournament starting soon just for you! Two-stage event spanning from April 4th till April 22nd is already gathering some big names around and will definitely be a nice show to observe and participate.</p> <p>Registration deadline is March 25th, so gather yourself and your fellow partner and sign up ASAP! Tournament registration info as well as all the data you need to participate and a platform to find a companion for the tournament in case you still don’t have one can be found in <a href="http://www.sleipnirstuff.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=82&amp;t=20484">this thread on sleipnirstuff</a>.</p> <p>See you on the battlefield, commanders!</p> tag:www.openra.net,2018-03-07:/news/release-20180307/ Release 20180307 now available 2018-03-07T23:00:00Z 2018-03-07T23:00:00Z <div style="border-radius: 4px; background-color: #272d2c; padding: 5px"> <div style="margin: -10px 5px"> <p>We are today pushing a new bugfix release that addresses a collection of issues that were missed during the playtesting phase of release-20180218.</p> <p>The changes in release-20180307 are:</p> <ul> <li>Fixed an issue that could cause excessive debug log file sizes.</li> <li>Fixed a compatibility issue with mono 5.10 and newer.</li> <li>Increased the minimum required mono version to 4.2 (fixing the “Failed to query server list” issue).</li> <li>Fixed Windows build scripts to account for <a href="https://blog.github.com/2018-02-23-weak-cryptographic-standards-removed/">GitHub API changes</a>.</li> </ul> <p>Head on over to our <a href="/download/">download page</a> to grab the new release, and spread the word!</p> </div> </div> <p>The <a href="/news/release-20180218/">original announcement</a> for release-20180218 is included below:</p> <hr /> <p>We are excited to announce the first <a href="/download/">OpenRA release</a> of this year! Over 700 commits from 43 contributors were merged over the last six months, with each commit helping to fix bugs, improve code quality, or add new features that improve the single- and multi-player experience.</p> <p>The main focus of this development cycle was modernizing core parts of the engine and game code to support the work-in-progress Tiberian Sun mod and other community projects. Thanks to our contributors, and to everybody who tested the playtest and reported bugs! Please note that changes to the way hotkeys are managed mean you will need to redefine any custom hotkeys in the Input settings.</p> <p>The changes weren’t all behind the scenes; an overhaul of the multiplayer UI added long-requested features:</p> <ul> <li>The server browser shows the name/faction/team of connected players</li> <li>The server browser is now also available as a tab in the server lobby</li> <li>The main menu and server browser will notify you if a new release is available</li> <li>The Global Chat has been removed from the server browser and lobby</li> <li>A chat dialog has been added to the in-game menu</li> </ul> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180102-serverplayers.png" width="600" alt="Server player list" /></p> <p>The new server player list is one of several improvements to the multiplayer UI.</p> </div> <p>Of course, we realize that the vast majority of OpenRA players do not play online. We haven’t forgotten about you either! Improvements for the singleplayer experience include:</p> <ul> <li>The full Harkonnen campaign in D2K</li> <li>Refinements and improvements to several campaign missions in Red Alert and Tiberian Dawn</li> <li>A fix for the AI cheating when it uses superweapons and support powers</li> <li>Several other changes that should improve the AI behaviour and performance</li> </ul> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180102-airstrike.png" alt="AI Airstrike" /></p> <p>Improvements to the AI support power targeting mean that this will be a rarer sight.</p> </div> <p>Other notable changes include:</p> <ul> <li>New lobby options to disable bounty, build radius, and re-packing Construction Yards</li> <li>Units will no longer target enemies revealed by the Red Alert GPS Satellite</li> <li>A collection of community-driven balance changes for Red Alert and Tiberian Dawn</li> <li>Fixes for many graphical glitches and polish issues</li> <li>Fixes for several platform integration issues on Windows and macOS</li> <li>Further improvements to memory usage and performance</li> </ul> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180102-mapoptions.png" width="600" alt="Expanded game options" /></p> <p>The Map Options tab includes several new settings, and can be customized by scripted maps.</p> </div> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180102-winmacos.png" width="600" alt="Windows and macOS improvements" /></p> <p>Platform integration fixes include “Pin to taskbar” support on Windows and 64 bit support for macOS.</p> </div> <p>As always, we suggest you read the <a href="https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/wiki/Changelog/1277bf3eb2b17e29fe9f2f6fd658c90771d7edbe">full changelog</a> if you’d like more information on the full list of changes.</p> <p>Now <a href="/download/">download</a> and head to the battlefield!</p> tag:www.openra.net,2018-02-18:/news/release-20180218/ Release 20180218 now available 2018-02-18T20:00:00Z 2018-02-18T20:00:00Z <p>We are excited to announce the first <a href="/download/">OpenRA release</a> of this year! Over 700 commits from 43 contributors were merged over the last six months, with each commit helping to fix bugs, improve code quality, or add new features that improve the single- and multi-player experience.</p> <p>The main focus of this development cycle was modernizing core parts of the engine and game code to support the work-in-progress Tiberian Sun mod and other community projects. Thanks to our contributors, and to everybody who tested the playtest and reported bugs! Please note that changes to the way hotkeys are managed mean you will need to redefine any custom hotkeys in the Input settings.</p> <p>The changes weren’t all behind the scenes; an overhaul of the multiplayer UI added long-requested features:</p> <ul> <li>The server browser shows the name/faction/team of connected players</li> <li>The server browser is now also available as a tab in the server lobby</li> <li>The main menu and server browser will notify you if a new release is available</li> <li>The Global Chat has been removed from the server browser and lobby</li> <li>A chat dialog has been added to the in-game menu</li> </ul> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180102-serverplayers.png" width="600" alt="Server player list" /></p> <p>The new server player list is one of several improvements to the multiplayer UI.</p> </div> <p>Of course, we realize that the vast majority of OpenRA players do not play online. We haven’t forgotten about you either! Improvements for the singleplayer experience include:</p> <ul> <li>The full Harkonnen campaign in D2K</li> <li>Refinements and improvements to several campaign missions in Red Alert and Tiberian Dawn</li> <li>A fix for the AI cheating when it uses superweapons and support powers</li> <li>Several other changes that should improve the AI behaviour and performance</li> </ul> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180102-airstrike.png" alt="AI Airstrike" /></p> <p>Improvements to the AI support power targeting mean that this will be a rarer sight.</p> </div> <p>Other notable changes include:</p> <ul> <li>New lobby options to disable bounty, build radius, and re-packing Construction Yards</li> <li>Units will no longer target enemies revealed by the Red Alert GPS Satellite</li> <li>A collection of community-driven balance changes for Red Alert and Tiberian Dawn</li> <li>Fixes for many graphical glitches and polish issues</li> <li>Fixes for several platform integration issues on Windows and macOS</li> <li>Further improvements to memory usage and performance</li> </ul> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180102-mapoptions.png" width="600" alt="Expanded game options" /></p> <p>The Map Options tab includes several new settings, and can be customized by scripted maps.</p> </div> <div style="text-align:center"> <p><img src="/images/news/20180102-winmacos.png" width="600" alt="Windows and macOS improvements" /></p> <p>Platform integration fixes include “Pin to taskbar” support on Windows and 64 bit support for macOS.</p> </div> <p>As always, we suggest you read the <a href="https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/wiki/Changelog/1277bf3eb2b17e29fe9f2f6fd658c90771d7edbe">full changelog</a> if you’d like more information on the full list of changes.</p> <p>Now <a href="/download/">download</a> and head to the battlefield!</p>