Howdy folks! It looks like July has come and gone, with all sorts of things going on. New stuff from new and old comers. The model competition is heating up with sweet looking ships. So let's get to it, shall we?
The drought of campaign activity has come to an end! (for now)
Newcomer, Lt. D releases Bem Cavalgar
, a campaign about jousting in fighters. Or maybe its about Vasudans bent on fighting protecting their doomed homeworld. It boasts such features a persistant loadout, command hub and other fun things. It seems like a perfect campaign.
A little... too perfect.
I'm Blaise Russel.
Oh, well that explains that then. (Welcome back!)
Hobbie has revamped the old X-Wing Redemption mission idea and brought it into the FreeSpace universe
in a single mission release called... The Redemption Scenario. It's also his first released mission, so be nice!
BTA gives us a small preview for Dusk Wars: Act 2.
More music, more ships, more explosions! What's not to love?
dukka has launched an ambitious project, a totally original total conversion using all sorts of community assets. It's called Children of Rosenthal.
He's got purdy screenshots and all sorts of universe fluff, its definately a must-checkout.
And Rheyah also gives a small preview for his own campaign, Shetland
. Its a new take on what might happen after FS2 and there's a lot of words detailing the background and gameplay ideas.
I think something's wrong over in SCP land, there has been no new official builds in over a month. I fear a dark lord has taken residence in the tower of code. We must gather a party and get the code flowing again.
Well except for karajorma who posted a test build with better event log logging
, now with snapchat. So that's neat! (What? Oh, snapshots! That's cool too.)
Anyway, z64555 has been steadfastly continuing his work
on the new cross-platform generation of FRED, wxFRED. He's put together a small preview with lots of neat pics!
TOO MANY THINGS TO LIST THIS MONTH. Let's keep this quick and witty.
I decided to share some neat skyboxes
I'm using for JAD. Brighten up those dull systems!
Darius releases city blocks
ready to be flattened by giant bombs and beams.
Headdie shows off his continued progress
on his Wayfarer.
Raven2001 shows off some sketches for a fighter
he's building for the competition. Can't wait to see it in THREE-DEE.
whitearrow's got some more pics for his heavy frigate
work in progress. Looks like a sanctus mixed with a star destroyer. Sweet.
ShadowWolf is up to making more ships! This time, a chunky spec ops cruiser.
It's cruisin' to give others a brusin'.
ShivanHunter's been spending his non-hunting time finishing up that rad looking modular station.
But there's just one problem with it: its not released yet!
Lepanto's got some more progress on his Vasudan bomber, now with a cockpit!
I'm sure its opponents will be crying "Dammit, its an Ammit. Run forrit."
wookieejedi has released a public beta of his Star Wars Original Trilogy Mod!
Let the force be your guide and free the universe from imperial rule. Or crush rebel scum. Both are equally as fun!
fightermedic continues his break from reviving campaigns to helping give the Vasudans more toys. First a refresh of the GTF Reshef
and a high tech shielded Vasudan corvette, the GVCv Mahal
(no pun for that one I'm afraid).
Steve-O shows that the Federal Navy still prides itself on the phrase "Victory through superior firepower". The Saracen/Durga revamp
is nearing completion!
bobbtmann has a pair of ships to show off! First, more progress on the Home One.
With that by your side I'm sure you'll fall fall into a certain predicament.
Next is his entry for the modding contest: The sexy GTF Iapetus
. It's like someone combined a race car with a Myrmidon!
This month on Scooby watch is the Seagull, obviously some kind of AWACS type ship!
I can tell because of the giant dome on top that says "Shoot Me." (You pick these things up over the years)
And now we come to Oddgrim's spot. As usual, he just has to show off his amazing Vasudan ships.
I will restate what I said to him in IRC, in the next JAD I'm going to use all his pretty Vasudan ships for a mission. So I can BLOW. THEM. UP.
*Drops mic, walks off*
Last month we played Nuclear's Rogue Intentions which left is on a cliffhanger just as we were about to get lost. Uncharted Territory is good follow up to that, since its about becoming lost and using your wits and devices to make it back home before baaaad things happen.
Wait, getting lost and using your wits and devices. Axem, that's Homesick. Why do I want to play another campaign where that happens?
Because, doofus. That's why. The campaign takes place alongside the retail FreeSpace 2 campaign. You're assigned a skunkworks type of mini-group, testing out new technologies. The most prominent of which are a stealth system that uses mini subspace portals, which can hide ships of any size from sensors. The catch is that the stealth system works best in the nebula. You know. The nebula. Where all the Shivans are. The GTVA sure loves to test new technologies with Shivans present. And you've also got a powerful long range beam weapon, so that's nice.
So you're trying to provoke some Shivans to test this stealth system when... THINGS GO WRONG. The subspace stealth system causes everyone to jump out and throw you into another system. From there you start trying to find a way back home, while not being horribly killed by those darn Shivans which, by the way, are here too. After attacking a Shivan supply depot and intercepting some navigational data, you find a jump node that might just lead you back home.
After clearing a node blockade with your ultra powerful beam cannon by playing stealth spotter, you find the node isn't stable enough for you to traverse yourself. So now we've got a neat mission coming up. The transit of Shivan ships temporarily stabilizes the node enough to escape through. So we need to sort of ride the wake of this Ravana destroyer headed for the node. However this mission suffers from a weird bug that seems to have been introduced between its release and now that won't allow you to win the mission. But a little putzing around in FRED quickly resolved it anyway (click here
for a fixed mission).
Anyway, after following the Ravana, you're back in that fun nebula. Just as you're getting your bearings, the Ravana does a 180 noscope and starts killing dudes. Things get panicky when a ship gets disabled and one ship wants to leave it, while another wants to dock with it and save the crew. You can leave them to die or cover them anyway. I like saving people, so that's what I did. After that, we've got a nice reprise of the spotting for a powerful beam cannon as you take down the Ravana that's been causing trouble. And then its running a gauntlet of endless fighters to the node as you escape to Gamma Draconis.
Now a certain choice or outcome sort of breaks the story into two endings here. Let's go into spoiler mode for some indepth talkings, even though I'm sure you have an idea what the outcomes might be.
So the Good Ending.
You make it out to Gamma Draconis, make contact with the GTVA and find out the Capella evacuation is in full swing. Many Sathanas-class ships are swarming around the star and the GTVA is about to sever the nodes to Capella. Great timing huh? So the last mission of the campaign is really one giant escort mission to get out of Capella. I guess there's nothing special gameplay-wise about the mission, but there is a certain feeling that I really liked. When the mission starts, the convoy group ahead of you greets you while fighting off Shivans. Your group is all like "Whoa dude, that's a lot of Shivans!" and the reply back is "Yep, what's new?". The contrast is interesting because that's probably how those pilots in Capella are feeling now. It's past fear and panic, just a sort of calm before the end. Or maybe they're just real badasses. I also liked this game of telephone between the convoy groups. The group ahead tells the group behind it what to expect in Shivan forces and any other well wishing. Plus a cameo by the Aquitane was nice. Those feelings of familiarity were good. It was nice to have a campaign where I could actually go home after getting lost. Potentially anyway.
And now the Bad Ending.
Because of various delays, you didn't make it to Gamma Draconis as soon as you could have. As a result, Capella happened, as you can see by a giant red nebula that wasn't there before. Every one quietly resigns to their fate. And so did my realist astronomer side. I kid, kind of. Now I don't know how far the two stars are from each other, but Capella is 42ly from Earth, and Gamma Draconis is 154ly. So its safe to say that light from Capella is going to be hitting Gamma Drac in about 100 years, and that nebula will probably never be that visible or large. BUT! As a story telling tool, it works. The nebula is a kick in the head for the player. You've played FreeSpace 2. You know how it ends. You know why that nebula is there now. You know you're not getting back home. As this dawns on everyone else, it gets even more depressing.
Like Rogue Intentions, Uncharted Territory goes a great job of expanding the horizon of what goes on in and around FreeSpace 2. It's another side story, another memoir that gets written and read (unless you hit the bad ending anyway). The characterization on your wingmen and the command crew is light, but the campaign instead focuses on the atmosphere of being lost and just getting home. It's also short with action at every turn, so there's no time for character development! I most enjoyed this little unexpected detour, and I hope you do too.
Now if you'll excuse me, there's been some trouble out in Luyten. It seems... there's a civil war.DUN. DUN. DUUUN.
Continuing the 2013 Screencap Season...
Last month's theme was Turrets. There were quite a bit fewer submissions that I expected! What, did I kill the contest with cool new rules or something? Despite that, there were a few shots that stood out from the bunch and it was tough to decide between them. So, who got the best shot of turrets being turrets?
Knossosfs2 with this brilliantly minimalist image of those deadly blue beams powering up.
Honorable mention goes to MatthTheGeek's sweet shot
of missiles and turrets and to The_E with this really nice broadside
that, sadly, still has that FPS gauge in the corner.Screencap Scoreboard:ssmit132 - 1
X3N0-Life-Form - 1
FreeSpaceFreak - 1
mjn.mixael - 1
Belisarius - 1
MatthTheGeek - 1knossosfs2 - 1
More than halfway through and there's no runaway winner yet! Suffice to say, I want to see more from you guys. Who is going to get that gold badge next year? Who will get the right to say that they
take the best screenshots EVAR? And if you haven't gotten on the board yet, that's OK. There's still five months for you to win. As it is, you only need to win two of them!That brings us to this month's theme which is... Fleets. Let's see your best formations EVAR!
Watch those HUD gauges (especially that sneaky FPS gauge) and check out the Screencam Script
to help you win a badge and bragging rights. You can see the rules and the previous winners here on the Wiki.
Did you know there's a war going on? Alien invaders, quite possibly from space, have invaded! By this I mean Spoon has started a Wings of Dawn forum game where people command fleets to stop the advance of the invading alien forces. All the spots are filled, but there's tons of cool role-playing going on. If nothing else, just check out the neat battle snippets Spoon has put together.
Until next month!