Here’s our twentieth alpha release! Read on for what’s new…
Stages? Who needs stages?
We’ve removed stages! In their place, upgrades, weapons and alien forms have unlock thresholds; the current state is shown in a bar along the lower edge of the game window, with markers indicating unlock (or re-lock) points. For the moment, they’re set up as for stages, but we expect to change this (as we already have on our dev server). We don’t yet show what each marker represents; however, that’s on the to-do list.
Bots are now available in our release builds! You can now start a local game and add bots (via the/botcommand) without having to recompile.
Humans now have firebombs to throw at the aliens! Cheaper than the fragmentation grenades which have been available since, well, Tremulous, they explode with less force but, like the flamer, they throw out some burning fuel and may set fire to nearby alien buildings. (And, yes, there’s [firebomb] too for chat.)
You now get to see whether friend or foe is in your sights, and you get to see when you’ve damaged something. Watch your cross-hair…
Unvanquished has been ported to SDL 2. This brings various improvements – better handling of window manager hot keys (Alt-Tab etc.), mouse motion and multiple monitors, for example. There’s still plenty which we could do to better make use of SDL , though. (It can still be built with SDL 1.2 for compatibility, e.g. you want to use externally-compiled SDL but 2.0 isn’t readily available.)
More engine and renderer changes!
FXAA (fast approximate anti-aliasing) has been added. It requires the GL3 renderer, but may not work on some older Intel hardware due to driver deficiencies. Click here if you want to read more about FXAA. To enable it, /set r_FXAA 1.
Some work has been done on multi-threading, allowing the renderer to run in a separate thread. This will help with complex scenes, giving a frame-rate boost (possibly as much as 40%) because it allows the game to get on with processing your input and talking to the server while the display is being updated – so long as you have a multi-core CPU (which you probably do). To enable it, /set r_smp 1 then restart the client.
GeoIP support is present now. Some will have noticed “$PLAYER has connected from $COUNTRY” on some of servers – that’s basically it, except that admins get /listgeoip too.
Improved IPv4 and IPv6 support – the server list now shows servers which are listening on both IPv4 and IPv6 once only, and you’ll connect using whichever protocol is preferred and available. (If you have publicly-visible IPv6 addresses and you want IPv6 to be preferred, /set net_enabled 7 (assuming that its value was 1 or 3) and restart the client, and you’ll be connecting via IPv6 where possible by default.
There are some animation fixes for alien buildings when they’re destroyed but there’s no overmind. We’ve also quietened loading of animations – there were “couldn’t load” messages which some thought were errors, but these were actually harmless.
Warnings issued by admins are now recorded in the ban log, and admins get to see who has active warnings against them via /listplayers and /showbans.
There’s also the usual set of miscellaneous fixes and rendering improvements.