Hello UE4 community,
we would like to show you the game we’ve been developing for quite some time now.
Barrage is a multiplayer hybrid of genres; think real-time strategy meets first person shooter meets “Worms” in space. It’s probably best described as an “Artillery RTS”. Gameplay is focused around raining destruction on your foes from afar, taking advantage of the unique ballistic trajectories possible in outer space to hit them from all angles. The basic premise is this: each player starts out with a home planet in a star system, which consists of many other planets, moons, asteroids and weird celestial oddities, with the aim of expanding their empire across the star system whilst simultaneously defending their home planet from annihilation. Throughout the course of the game, players will wage all-out war on each other, initially with missiles, lasers and other conventional weapons before developing even more exciting, bizarre and destructive experimental weaponry, including solar flares and black holes!
Fast paced RTS gameplay mixed with fps skill shots
Wide array of different weapon categories and tiers
N-body gravity approximation for projectiles
Multiple tech paths allowing different styles of play
At the moment we’re in a pre-alpha stage preparing the game for a greenlight campaign starting hopefully this month.
For the latest updates on our progress, follow our Twitter account or check out our website.
thought it would be a good idea to post the progress we made this week.
First thing was that we’re using Ray Traced Distance Field Soft Shadows now. The results are imo pretty impressive and so much better than what we had before (compare with 3rd screen from my first post) http://i.imgur.com/GqFP3Pj.png
It’s been a month now, since we passed Steam Greenlight and would like to keep you updated on the progress we made till then.
If you’re following our Twitter account (if not, you should definitely do so! @BarrageGame](twitter.com/BarrageGame) ) you may have already noticed that we’ve been working on more buildings for the alpha version. With the tier 3 missile silo and the moon creator finished, we’re almost done with our complete re-design for the buildings we plan to integrate in our first testing version.
With that being done, we’re coming closer to a playable alpha version and hope to reduce the placeholder and “work in progress” assets as much as possible.
Besides working on gameplay-centered features we also try to do a bit of technological research on how we could improve the game in general.
One opportunity we took lately was to implement NVIDIA’s HBAO+ tech. With NVIDIA opening up their Gameworks framework to UnrealEngine4 users we had the chance to check out their advanced rendering techniques. HBAO+ adds very realistic and detailed shadows around objects while having the same performance as UE4’s normal Ambient Occlusion.
It’s pretty exciting for us to look into techniques that used to be AAA-only not so long ago.
Most of the programming is focused on the alpha version features as well. This includes mostly frondend tasks like creating a way to join a server through a server browser, a menu for starting matches, ingame alerts but also small gameplay fixes for example that solar power plants don’t produce energy when not facing the sun.
For the next few weeks we plan to keep our programming focus further on these tasks to smooth out most of the edges on our UI and menu system. While it will definitely miss some features in the alpha version we would like to have the implemented features polished.
We haven’t figured out the exact procedure of our alpha test signup but as mentioned during Greenlight the idea is to target people who hopefully don’t mind to test an unfinished product and giving constructive feedback. We don’t want people to think that it’s basically a free demo and represents the final state of the game. If everything goes according to plan we will probably start the application in May and close the signups when we have a appropiate number of testers.
However, there will be definitely a big announcement here and on our social media websites so you won’t miss it.
Another small update about the work I did the last few days.
I started working on the tier 2 shield generator. I imagined the final ingame version could have some particle effects coming out of the nozzles or maybe the sphere spinning around.
Here’s the high poly version: http://i.imgur.com/dPDd7Fx.png
Also finished the lowpoly and baked the maps. For me it’s always super impressive what a normal map can do. Almost like magic.
After a period of radio silence, it’s time for another blog post!
The primary reason for the relative lack of updates: we’ve been spending a great deal of time over the last two months fixing various bugs and “features”. Now for the good news: we’ve fixed the majority of issues which were holding up the release of the alpha version.
Another crucial task has been getting the playtesting servers up and running. We’re excited to report that we’ve successfully tested some transatlantic gameplay without noticing any serious problems!
The most important non-programming task throughout May/June was to put a short trailer for our alpha testing together. It’s a rather time consuming task because unfortunately we don’t have a lot of video editing knowledge in our ranks. Nonetheless we’re done with the base material and the upcoming days will be mostly about further polishing the editing and including a nice song.
Being busy with the mentioned work on our upcoming trailer there wasn’t a lot of time to work on artistic tasks for Barrage. During the last few days we’ve started to work on another level to add some more variation. Apart from the changed visuals it also has some gameplay related alterations due to the different planet biomes and changed orbits.
We’re almost finished with the trailer for our alpha version.
I continued to work on the planet explosions a bit more and I have to say I’m pretty satisfied with the result (I’m not a VFX artist at all).
We’ve been hard at work since our successful Steam Greenlight in March and we’re now very pleased to officially announce the upcoming Barrage alpha version. It’s been a long ride already and we’re incredibly proud that the game is finally coming together!
As we mentioned earlier in the year, the main tasks after our Steam Greenlight campaign were to remove any game-breaking bugs, polish the gameplay but also to take care of backend related tasks like creating a game updater/launcher and organising a proper match server system. As it happens, said tasks have turned out to be considerably more time-consuming than we had first imagined! We’ve spent the best part of the last few weeks adding in-engine demo recording to enable the testers to easily record footage of their testing sessions, as well as various smaller-but-still-important things like the game manual.
We’re now at a stage where we believe that the game itself is ready to enter the first phase of player testing. Of course, it’s still a very early version and is neither feature-complete nor entirely free of bugs or other issues, but we’d like to emphasise that this closed alpha test will play a huge part in shaping the final game and the contributions of keen playtesters will be invaluable in this process.
The most important question, though: when will it start?
As some of you may already have noticed, a sign-up button appeared on our homepage several weeks ago. We aim to release the alpha version within the next 3 weeks, so sign-up now!
It’s been a pretty long ride so far but we finally made it to the first public alpha tests. If someone from the UE4 forums signed up as well: Please check your inbox with some instructions how to download the game launcher.
For further details please check out our forums.
If you haven’t got a mail. It’s not too late to sign-up for the next round of alpha invites.
After we received some very valueable feedback during the early alpha tests, we started to add a lot of polish to the game. One of the most obvious feature we added is the new full-blown planet biome system.
Instead of tediously handplacing every single rock and tree we added a system that scatters all kind of vegetation, rocks, mountains, decals and craters depending on the planet type.
This allows us to craft pretty nice looking planets in a minute.
it’s so good to see a great game idea to be realized. I’m a big RTS fan, and love artillery games too, so combining RTS with those n-body gravity effected missiles could be real fun! it’s definitely a game to follow. is it only multiplayer?
thanks for kind words! Well, I guess it depends what you mean by singleplayer. It’s extremely unlikely that we’ll have an actual sp-campaign/story mode but we already have decent AI implemented.
So you can already play the game on your own.