It’s been a long ride, but we’re finally ready to launch the 0.7 update on the LIVE servers. It took longer than we anticipated, but after the dreaded 0.3 update we have to make sure each new update we bring to the “main” branch of the game is stable, works without major problems and doesn’t have any game breaking bugs that might affect the enjoyment and experience of players. After as thorough testing as possible with the limited resources we have and also with the help of our testers on the PTE servers that started in late August, we’re happy with the progress we’ve made on the update, and – bar any major last-minute problems – it should be available later this week!
Since it’s been a long time since we’ve first announced the update, let’s focus on what the new update brings to the table in terms of performance, stability, and new weaponry as well.
As some of you may know by now, the most important thing to come with the 0.7 update is the engine switch from our previous version to the new one. Live version of the game have been using Unreal Engine 4.19 so far and that means we couldn’t utilize a lot of functionalities that came later on. Keep in mind that the 4.19 version has been released in March 2018 and had a lot of support for what we’ve been doing, but we had to move forward to 4.21 in order to get the tools we required for optimization work.
The one of the biggest changes and reasons for the engine switch is the Replication Graph, which came with the 4.20 update. In simple words, replication is a term that describes how server and game talks to one another, talking about how player moves, where he is, what’s the player’s state – not to mention different variables every player has. The Replication Graph decides, what information are important depending on where a player is. So, for example if you have 10 players fighting on the other side of Moscow, there’s no point in knowing how each individual bullet flies in a building half kilometer from you, so Replication Graph helps dealing with that, freeing up CPU from calculations. That helps with performance, but in order to utilize that freed up space, we had to adjust our netcode as well, and that took a lot of work from our programmers.
On the other side, we had to do work on optimization of World War 3. We knew that the performance wasn’t great, but being an Early Access title we have more possibilities to adjust our work plan than maybe some studios do. Work has been going great and from our PTE tests we can be happy with what we’ve achieved in the last month and a bit in terms of performance. Those who haven’t had a chance of playing 0.7 update on the PTE should see an improvement in how the game plays for them!
In terms of new content, we have a lot of changes coming your way: There’s a whole new Challenge System, that consists of daily challenges, resetting every 24 hours, so you and your fellow soldiers have something to do in addition to… killing other players. It’s not a final version, it’s the start of a much bigger system that encompassess progression as well.
We’re introducing a new squad manager, which isn’t a “sexy” change, but it had to be done. We weren’t happy with how squad manager worked this far in World War 3, so we had it reworked so it works properly, without any problems and helps players enjoy the game together with friends. We couldn’t fix things with how the manager was set up previously – now it shouldn’t cause any issues.
We’ve also brought a new VOIP system to life – the one we had previously wasn’t what we envisioned and it also didn’t work well with our game. Now it has a lot more options and sounds more like you’d actually be in a battle, so it helps with immersion, too. But remember: our VOIP is squad-only, for both performance and gameplay reasons.
From a visual perspective, there’s new lighting on our maps, with also helps with immersion, new vehicle HUDs (but those are still a WIP version, you could see how the new HUD looks in our Weekly Reports couple of weeks ago).
As you may conclude on your own by now, the 0.7 update is much more techy than anything else, but in case you are more interested in assets, we have something new for you as well! With 0.7 update, we’re introducing VAB Mobile Spawn Variant, which is a replacement for BCV for one of the teams – just so you can quickly determine if you’re dealing with friends, or foes. It always appears on the opposite side of the match, so if you’re encountering something different than BCV – run or prepare for a fight.
In terms of strikes, we’re bringing Napalm and Smoke Artillery for players to use. Those two are designed to help with hiding your forces from the enemy’s rifles and to cut enemies off from getting to a capture point. They are helpful for tactical approach and utilized properly may change the course of the game.
Breakthrough game mode
One more thing: Because of the workforce we had to move in order to finish up the 0.7 update, Breakthrough game mode, the community game mode designed by you, but polished by us at the studio, will be releasing with the introduction of the 0.8 update. The update itself will be more content-oriented in comparison to the 0.7, so stay tuned! As we have told you last week, we are still aiming for the Breakthrough’s PTE release early October and if nothing dramatic happens, we’re still on course and nothing has changed in that regard.
Thank you for being patient with us and we are confident that the wait will be well worth it! Have a productive week and see you in 0.7, Soldiers!